Shopify is one of the leading e-commerce options for companies and individuals who want to be able to quickly set up a feature-rich online shop. All Shopify users have access to free templates that can be used, plus a large and growing selection of beautiful premium templates that can be purchased for affordable prices. Shopify is a hosted system, so you won’t have to go through a complicated installation process on your server, and support and billing for e-commerce functionality and hosting is combined and managed in one place.
Many designers and developers love Shopify because it’s a great system to use for client projects. You can create custom themes for your clients, or even make money by selling your templates in their theme shop. Developers can also create and sell apps in the app shop. Shopify has a partners program that allows designers to earn a commission by referring clients, and they also have an experts section where you can get listed so Shopify users can easily find you for custom work.
In this post we’ll highlight a number of resources that will be very helpful to designers/developers who want to learn more about Shopify, and also for shop owners who want to find some great resources to make their e-commerce site even better.
Official Shopify Resources:
Shopify Compass helps shop owners learn more about running a successful e-commerce website. Join online courses, learn from a community of experts and participate in special online events and workshops.
The Shopify Manual
The Shopify Manual is the go-to guide for Shopify users. You’ll find documentation for just about all of Shopify’s features and functions. The information is neatly categorized, and you can also search to find what you’re looking for.
Developers can get all of the needed information about Shopify’s API from this documentation.
If you’re a designer and you’re interested in learning more about how to create custom themes for Shopify, this is a great resource.
The Shopify Partner Program
Through the partner program you can earn money by referring clients or by acting as an affiliate.
Shopify Theme Store
If you’re looking for a great template to use for your e-commerce website, the official Shopify theme store is the best place to start (we’ll highlight some of the best themes below). There is a growing selection of really high-quality designs, and you’ll find templates in a variety of different styles and for sites in different industries. If you’re a designer, the theme shop provides an opportunity to make some money by getting your themes listed for sale.
Shopify App Store
Shopify comes with many essential features, but further extension is possible with the help of apps. The app store includes a wide variety of apps that do all kinds of things to make your online shop more profitable or more efficient (we’ll highlight some of the most interesting apps below). There are apps for marketing your products, increasing sales, integration with social media, managing inventory, accounting, reporting, and more. If you’re a developer you can create you own apps to be listed for sale in the app store.
If you’re looking for a designer to create a beautiful custom design for your e-commerce site, this directory is a great place to start. The designers featured here have been approved by Shopify, so you know they’ll be familiar with the system. You can also find developers to create custom apps for you, if needed. Designers and developers can apply to be listed as an expert to make it easier for potential clients to find you.
Examples of Shopify-based sites in the real world can be seen in the showcase. At the end of this post we’ll showcase some of them for inspiration.
The forums can be a great place to find answers to your questions, or to help others by answering their questions.
These resources do not come directly from Shopify, but they can be a great help to designers and developers.
This cheatsheet lists the tags that you can use when coding themes.
Shopify TextMate Bundle
This free resource allows you to use TextMate for coding Shopify themes.
There are more than 100 themes available in the theme shop, and here are some of the best. We’ve also included some that can be purchased at ThemeForest.
Vanity Shop ($46)
Eighty Three ($56)
High Fashion ($64)
Responsive (San Francisco) ($180)
Mobilia (Napa) ($180)
Mobilia (Milan) ($180)
Symmetry (Chantilly) ($180)
Atlantic (Organic) ($180)
Envy (Stockholm) ($180)
Mr Parker (Sunset) ($140)
The apps available allow you to add some really helpful functionality to your site based on your specific needs. A browse through the app shop will give you all kinds of ideas about how you can improve your shop. We’re showcasing some of the best and most interesting apps here.
Shopify POS Pro ($89/month)
Basic POS is included in all Shopify plans which accepts credit cards online and in person. It keeps everything in one dashboard for both your online shop and retail store. The Pro plan comes with added features such as online shopping with in-store pick up and exchange, customized shipping fees, and the ability to add unlimited store staff to track registers and commissions.
S Loyalty: Loyalty Suite (Free – $19.99 – $99.99/month)
Create a customer loyalty program and automatically reward your customers for purchases, referrals, likes, and more.
Bold Discount ($99.99)
With this app you can easily run discounts, daily deals, and holiday sales.
Email Template Creator (free)
Easily create professional looking order confirmations and shipping updates.
Privy ($10 – $20/month)
Grow your email list from your Shopify store with email marketing, & SMS tools, including exit-intent driven popups & banners.
SEO Image Optimizer (Free-$25/month)
Gain traffic on Google image search with this daily automated SEO optimizer.
Use DataFeedWatch to list your products in Google and 200+ shopping channels.
Email Offers ($15/month)
Automatically follow up with customers with customized offers to increase repeat business.
Refersion ($89/month and up)
Create an affiliate program for your shop with Refersion.
Neat A/B Testing ($29/month)
Find out what sells best and maximize your shop’s profits with simple split testing.
Product Options ($20/month)
Create product options with file uploads, radio buttons, checkboxes, dropdowns and more.
Yopto Product Reviews (free to install, growth $29-$299/month)
Automatically email customers to ask for product reviews, and display the reviews on your site.
Bold Sales Motivator ($10-$15/month)
Display messages to customers when they add a product to your cart and encourage more sales.
Exit Offers ($10/month)
Sell to people who are about to leave your shop or abandoning a cart.
Bold Upsell ($9.99-$59.99/month)
Add upsell offers to increase the average transaction.
Wishlist + Reminder ($5/month)
Add wishlist functionality to your shop so users can mark the products that they want.
One Click Social Login ($1-$10/month)
Allow customers to login to your site using their social profiles.
Automatically track your shipments and allow customers to check on the status of shipments.
Integrate your site with Zendesk for customer service.
Allow live chat functionality on your site to communicate with visitors and offer instant support.
If you’re looking for some inspiration, here is a showcase of excellent custom Shopify themes.
So Worth Loving uses handwritten elements, pops of color and lots of photos of their products in use to create a fun, personalized feel to their shop.
Homies highlights their best sellers, featured products, brand values and customer testimonials on a clean, open home page. Visitors immediately get a sense of the store’s style and story. Dropdown menus make navigating their store a breeze.
Keeping it simple with a slideshow header featuring select products and a little brand storytelling gives 49th Roasters a minimal, bold impact.
Wide panels and great product photography is the name of the game for Studio Neat. The focus is all about the product here, but we still get a sense of the brand’s personality with poppy graphic features.
Island Creek Oysters makes the most of consistent branding with font and color throughout their bright, fun but super clean site.
Not to distract from their beautiful products, Pop Chart makes great use of a minimal design shop. Their use of color and subtle image hover effects reflect the shop’s fresh, colorful prints.
An eye-catching animated header gives visitors a sense right away of the brand’s style and sense of humor. Graphics and animations throughout the site make browsing the shop fun and exciting.