Starting your own Shopify store is a smart way to set foot in the world of selling online. The eCommerce store builder is a convenient option when you wish to build an online store
We spoke with Matthew Palfrey, Director at BretContreras.Store and a Shopify expert, to understand how entrepreneurs can start their eCommerce business with a Shopify store and make the most of SEO and social media marketing. Read on!
Tell us about your journey as a Shopify expert.
I stumbled upon Shopify in 2009 when I was searching for a way to build my own website.
I didn’t have a big budget and so I needed an affordable platform that would permit me to make edits and changes as and when needed, without having to hire a web designer.
Fast forward to today, I now run one of the most successful Shopify development agencies in Asia-Pacific, with a portfolio of stores under my belt. My company, Digital Start Lab, focuses on eCommerce without barriers.
How does social media help eCommerce businesses in building a strong customer base?
Like SEO, social media (and marketing in general) is unique to your business. While most find that social media can be a useful channel to market their website or business, it is not a pre-requisite to having a successful business.
I know many 7-figure business owners who don’t focus on social because they have such a strong referral business. But if you are going to indulge in social media then do it well.
Use your social media channels to engage, delight and help your customers – not just because you feel you have to.
Could you share some tips for individuals who wish to start their Shopify store?
The most important advice I can give to anyone considering starting a Shopify store is to just start! Entrepreneurs typically don’t stumble upon million-dollar ideas, however the most successful share one common trait – the ability to take action.
Yes, it’s important to be diligent and you need to focus on a great product or service coupled with fantastic customer service. But these things can also develop over time.
My mantra is that if you have a great product, service or idea then the only way to prove it is by putting it out to market and to start selling.
Finger painting is often thought of as something that’s just for children, but Iris Scott has shown that you can create beautiful works of art using your fingers instead of a brush. One day while painting, artist Iris Scott realized she had run out of clean brushes.
How important is it to invest in website SEO for eCommerce businesses?
SEO is important for search results, but it’s one part of the puzzle. And it’s always important to view SEO as a dynamic multi-faceted medium, not simply keyword-optimized blog posts.
My priority isn’t just SEO, but in ensuring that my websites are the most useful locations for the search terms they are associated with. We always devote as much effort to answering the question “How can we be the best location for a user to find what they need?”
Why did you choose a .STORE domain name for Bret Contreras’s website?
We definitely gain an SEO boost from the .STORE domain and it helps us to differentiate from our content site. Our customers know that they are at the right location for purchasing our range of products and services, which is a great benefit.