Nail your Shopify website launch in 7 steps

As a creative founder, designing and launching your Shopify website can be an exciting but daunting task. There are many vital steps to tick off in order to create a fabulous on-brand experience for your customers. To ensure that your launch is a success, you need to have a clear vision and strategy for your website, a cohesive brand identity, engaging copywriting, a well-set-up Shopify store, and a marketing plan to generate hype pre-launch. In this post, we'll walk you through each of these essential steps to help you launch your Shopify website with confidence.
Step 1: Define Your Website Vision and Strategy

I have come to learn as a founder that Strategy is a fundamental way to lighten a company's load in the long-term. Even covering just the core vitals of your strategy makes the world of difference between struggling to keep afloat and plain sailing. Mapping out your route to market relieves some pressure and knowing how to execute the strategy is just as important. Before you start setting up your Shopify store, it's essential to define your website's vision and strategy. Who are you selling to? Without a clear plan, your website will feel like a generic mess that fails to convert your customers. Make time to consider your website's key objectives and how you want to communicate with your customers. Grab your notepad and answer these questions:

  • Who am I selling to?
  • What are the core calls to actions for each page and key section?
  • What do my customers want to do on my website? eg. browse, see a moodboard, purchase, sign up to a newsletter.
  • What are the strengths and weaknesses of your competitors' websites? Refrain form shiny object syndrome for now, you don't need their bells and whistles. Focus on your marketing and visibility.
Step 2: Create a Cohesive Brand Identity

The way a customer perceives your business' branding plays a crucial role in shaping the connection to your company and compelling them to engage and convert. Every aspect of your website, ranging from the logo and colour scheme to the font choices and overall visual appeal plays a part in building trust. An effective brand identity fosters a uniform and unforgettable experience for your customers. A It is essential to establish a robust brand identity before we start building out your Shopify store. Many creatives have a wonderfully clear vision of what their design system might look; you are after all a creative and you've worked mega hard to carve out your own path.. However, if you are tentative in creative this we would be excited to work on it with you, we work with a divinely talented Brand Identity partner. If you need a little convincing, have a peek at the 6 ways I have found that a Brand Identity will transform your business' journey and sales.

Step 3: Craft Engaging Copywriting

Copywriting is a critical component of your website. It can make or break your website, so it's best to have your copy written out before you start building your website. Having your copy in place will make it easier to find the right sections to display your copy. Consider working with a professional copywriter to help you craft compelling and engaging copy that resonates with your target audience. Rosie Broad is our famed go-to gal. She is a dab hand at transforming words into mellifluous passages and paragraphs that tell your story succinctly and on-brand.

Step 4: Set Up Your Shopify Store

The technical part. I relish this park, admin is my thing, I am a bit of a nerd... So, now that you have a clear vision, a killah brand identity, and engaging copywriting, it's time to set up your Shopify store. This step can be tedious, but let's get it right straight off the bat.

  • Purchase your website domain
  • Create a Shopify account and choose a plan - I'd recommend the basic plan to start with.
  • Choose a Shopify theme from the theme store - no shame in choosing a free theme, Dawn is a lovely solution! But be warned you cannot transfer your creation from one theme to another and all Shopify themes are not equal. I need to write a 'What to look out for when choosing a theme' post.
  • Add your products - image under 500 MB, add the alt tags, name your files, write short and snappy product descriptions. See this post to read about writing high-converting product pages.
  • Create the fundamental page templates (homepage, about, products, collections, FAQs, blog, contact, etc.)
  • Set up the additional features to start generating your digital ecosystem (newsletter, Instagram shopping, Pinterest Shopping, abandoned cart, Cloudflare, product bundling, search filters, social media feeds, etc.)
  • Are your payment methods, delivery and returns policies, shipping settings are correctly set up
  • Optimise your page titles, page and product descriptions, and images for SEO
  • Is your website fully responsive? Test it works perfectly on multiples devices (mobile, tablet, and desktop)
  • Test your checkout to ensure purchases, refunds, cancellations, etc., are set up and working.
Step 5: Launch a Pre-Launch Marketing Campaign

Now that your website is almost ready to go, it's time to generate some hype pre-launch. Here are some ideas to get people talking and excited about your launch:

  • Do a countdown on social media
  • Host a giveaway
  • Do a flash sale
  • Offer a special gift for the first customers to buy
Step 6: Launch Your Shopify Website

You've done all the hard work, and it's time to launch your Shopify website. Remember to test everything one final time to ensure everything is working correctly before

Step 7: Leave it alone! Let the dust settle! Focus on marketing your business.

People tent to get shiny object syndrome a week or so after they launch. You will probably have nailed your pre-launch marketing. But if you haven't, your website might not get the traction as you hoped for. It happens, and it is OK, all is not lost. Refer back to the marketing strategy outlined in your creative strategy. Refrain from changing fonts, colours, icons, images, layout. Focus on your marketing. Keep plugging away at it and keep checking in with the (killah) analytics board in your Shopify backend. You can gleen SO much useful data from this source.

Are you struggling to get your Shopify store firing on all cylinders? Are you finding the never ending checklist overwhelming? Get in touch, I offer a complimentary 30 minute discovery call. Let's go over your vision, where you are stuck and decide on the right service for you.

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