1. Know Your Objective
2. Selling Single or Multi-brands?
3. Human Resources for Store Operation
4. Shopify Payment Gateways and Digital Wallets
5. Multilingual on Shopify
6. Checkout Process, Order Management and Fulfilment
7. Best Customer Service on Shopify
Are you thinking of creating a website on Shopify? Assuming you have gathered all the information you need for setting up the store and have a solid plan in mind, what are the next steps? Finding a Shopify Expert Agency, like us Navy FAB is always a good choice to start off with. Nevertheless, no matter you want to create a store on your own or find a professional third-party vendor or agency to help you set up the Shopify store, we sincerely believe you should consider the following factors to ensure you build your site and get it up and running more effectively.
1. Know Your Objective of Building a Shopify Website
Navy FAB specializes in building websites for brands, whether from scratch or revamp. From the first client meeting, we try to understand the types of products and services our clients are offering and most importantly, their objectives and goals. Imagine you are building a new website, are you a new company planning to sell new products, or are you already a well-known brand looking to expand and grow your business online?
For a brand that is newly established, the main objectives would be to gain trust and impress the customers. Efforts need to be put into design and website content as first impressions are important. Finding professional photographers can help provide clear, aesthetic product pictures on your website that reflect your brand and style. Content is also essential in building boosting customers’ confidence in your brand. Having original and unique copywriting can not only give a better understanding of your products but also a chance to influence and attract customers to purchase them.
On the other hand, if your brand is already well established and you now want to create a new sales channel to further boost sales through an online platform, the focus would be on optimising both sales channels. This can be done by providing exclusive online offers to attract consumers to your website or by creating a special shopping experience in physical stores. You need to ensure that the incentives for consumers to shop online and offline will be unique in order to avoid cannibalising your in-store sales with e-commerce sales.
The main point to bring out is that the basic fundamental of creating a good ecommerce website is to have a clear objective. However, not many merchants are sure about their aim of creating a website which makes it hard to build upon the elements of the website design.
2. Selling Single or Multi-brands on Shopify?
Whether you are selling personal brands or standalone brands on an online platform, Shopify is the best option as the layout design can be changed through modifying the Shopify Themes while the flexibility does not hamper the design consistency like Wix. Moreover, Shopify being a North American company, the themes available on the Shopify store are westernised, categorizing into different industries and most importantly are always up to trend!
Depending on the situation, selling multi-brands can be profitable or might not. If your store offers unique brands and products, or if you yourself are a well-known KOL, then there is a high chance for your site to be successful. However, if your site offers goods that can be easily found in markets, or your brand is not well established, then you might have to bet on your luck.
No matter the former or the latter, in order to have a strong digital branding, you must follow your company brand guidelines as well as adopting the design and layout framework of Shopify. Remember to send the brand guidelines or at least a design brief over to agencies to design the website accordingly. If your company does not have a brand guideline, it is recommended to start off by creating one before setting up a store.
3. Human Resources for Shopify Online Store Operation
As an Ecommerce Agency, we not only want to focus on the website design for our clients but also to create a website that can build a successful online business. One of the factors is that we are unable to control how many staff are appointed to operate the ecommerce business. It is common for companies to assign their marketing staff to take over and follow up with the ecommerce site since not many companies have job positions such as Ecommerce Manager. However, no matter what their position is, from our experience, it is more efficient to coordinate the website design and has a higher chance of building a successful ecommerce website if the person in charge is fully managing it later on.
Even when your company has a lot of resources and is willing to pay a considerable amount of development fee to hire Shopify Experts like Navy FAB to design and build the new Shopify website, a contact point / person in charge is still essential to coordinate the communication between the company management and the Shopify Expert, especially in terms of website design and development requirements. Clients need to prepare all the related project materials such as product pictures, banner images, copywriting related to the brand, company policies like shipping and return policies throughout the project. This communication is two-way and involves a lot of back and forth. In case the vendor doesn’t perform as expected, this person in charge can be held accountable.
When the project is completed, this contact point still plays a very important role. Using Navy FAB’s clients as a reference, once the Shopify store is launched, the client can join our support and maintenance services as the online store design may need to be updated occasionally according to the marketing and promotion plans. The person in charge should continue to act as a bridge between Navy FAB and the client company management for communication.
4. Shopify Payment Gateways and Digital Wallets
If you are wondering how to accept payments on Shopify, you can simply use Shopify Payment where it supports Visa, Master, American Express, Apple Pay, Google Pay and Shop Pay. You may not need to find a third party payment service provider to accept these common credit card payments. Moreover, as Shopify Payment is fully integrated with your store, you can track and view the payout in the Shopify admin panel.
Shoipfy supported the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region as early as in 2018, other areas include :
- New Zealand
- United Kingdom
- United States
Shopify Payment fees depend on the Shopify subscription plan. You can upgrade your Shopify plan as the credit card rates decrease marginally for higher plans. Find more information related to transaction charges in Shopify Pricing. As Shopify Payment is their own payment service, it will not include “Additional fees using all payment providers other than Shopify Payments”.
Not all businesses are eligible to use Shopify Payments, in order to figure out the eligibility, please check the Prohibited businesses for Hong Kong.
Third-party payment gateways like Paypal or Asia Pay (PayDollar) are also supported in Shopify but it should be noted that there will be additional transaction fees according to the subscribed Shopify Plan.
In recent years, e-wallets such as PayMe, Alipay, WeChat Pay, BOC Pay have made online shopping even more convenient. Nowadays, consumers always look for a better online shopping experience, as such, making the checkout and payment process quick and easy is essential. In addition, FPS is also a great option for consumers who don’t have credit cards.
Payme, WeChat Pay, Alipay, UnionPay and FPS can all be integrated into Hong Kong Shopify. Out of a few, QF Pay is probably most of SME’s first choice as Shopify has partnered with them in 2020. The partnership allows e-wallets payments to be accepted in the Shopify platform and excluded from the “Additional fees using all payment providers other than Shopify Payments”. However, to note, there will be a one-off settlement account opening fee. Applying through Navy FAB will have a discounted package on the handling fee. Please contact us for more details.
5. Multi-language on Shopify to Serve Diversified Hong Kong Customers
Given that the main language for Hong Kong is Traditional Chinese, Simplified Chinese and English, those are also the common languages for HK Shopify sites.
Although Shopify has been developed based on English, you can still set Traditional Chinese or Simplified Chinese as the main store language. With the help of third-party apps, you can enable the Shopify store to be multilingual. Langify is our selected app choice as it is easy and clear to be used when compared to other multi-language apps.
Implementing foreign languages on your site helps your brand to reach out to different consumers. A single Shopify store can set up to 5 languages and Shopify merchants can add it anytime, even after the site is set up. Unlike Shopline which does not allow merchants to add languages later, you can decide which languages to implement after the site launch.
6. Shopify Checkout Process, Order Management and Fulfilment
Shopify online store’s secure shopping cart comes with a 128-bit SSL certificate free of charge. The same level of encryption is used as the large banks, your SSL keeps your information secure at all times. What’s more, Shopify Checkout is PCI Compliant. As a certified Level 1 PCI Compliant business, Shopify gives your online store the ability to accept all major credit cards safely and securely, allowing your customers the ultimate convenience.
Therefore, you do not need to worry about the checkout could be easily hacked like WooCommerce; however, to eliminate the risk of vicious cyberattack, Shopify do not allow non-Shopify Plus merchants to modify part of the Shopify Checkout pages.
Obtaining enough information during the checkout process is crucial as sometimes the orders may need additional information to fulfill such as the delivery date, packaging and gift wrapping. As you may not be able to modify the Shopify Checkout, enabling order notes on your cart page or installing related Shopify Apps can help if your customers have special requests.
Sometimes, you may want to customize the products as product bundles for the customers to order. Remember that Shopify allows a maximum of 3 options for each product and a maximum of 100 combinations for a single product. Thus, if your products have more than 3 options or require additional information to be filled in, you may need to add custom fields to the product form or install suitable Shopify apps.
If your orders are relatively small, you can choose to manually create the waybills via Hong Kong Post or SF express and deliver the ordered products to the customers. However, when the order quantity is gradually increasing, you will find this method very inefficient as you need to type the customer address, phone number and package content one by one.
Shopify Hong Kong does not directly offer storage and fulfillment services like Fulfillment by Amazon. Instead, merchants can choose from the third-party apps and integrations or make use of Shopify platform’s rich APIs for their shipping and logistics needs. Some may choose 3PL who offer self logistics services such as Kerry Express. Small to medium sized Shopify merchants in Hong Kong can use ShipAny, which is a shipping tool that supports large order logistics. For installation details please contact us.
As for companies selling fresh and frozen food, they usually deliver on their own or buy in the cold chain delivery services provided by third-party logistics.
7. Best Customer Service on Shopify
Customer is King – it is a cliché but still not every Shopify online store emphasizes quick and quality customer service. Make sure that the customers can easily contact you through contact form or live chat when designing the Shopify website.
We have seen clients who value customer service, aim to humanize their site such as by having online chat services. This gives trust to customers and they will be more willing to check out.
Currently, Whatsapp and Facebook Messenger are the main communication platform in Hong Kong when compared to Emails. Hence, we strongly recommend Omnichat and Gorgias to build up omni channel communication between the customers and your brand. For more details, please contact us.
Above 7 tips are from the Navy FAB team to prepare you for a new website. With reference to the above points and getting even deeper will yield a successful website. Other than the above tips, there are other factors that need to be considered such as how to increase profitability, how to acquire new customers and how to establish a customer relationship management system. As these factors are complicated and vary upon industries, you can book for a time with us for a free 30 mins Shopify consultation.
Lastly, if you have any enquiries regarding setting up Shopify for the Hong Kong market, please feel free to contact us!