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How to Write a Blog Post (That Actually Gets Read)

Blogging lets you teach, inspire, and engage an audience—even drive traffic to your products—at scale. It's one of the most accessible forms of content marketing, but that doesn't make it easy. Here's a proven framework for crafting a blog post that actually gets read. More


The “Yes Theory”: What It Actually Takes to Become a Full-Time YouTuber

For four young strangers who came together by chance, leaving their stable lives behind to bet it all on building a YouTube channel full time...didn't go over well with their friends and family. But because of that choice, these guys have gone from living on a mutual friend’s couch in Montreal, Canada to getting their own place in Venice Beach, California while travelling the world to create content for a fast-growing fanbase of over 310,000 subscribers. Their unique brand of videos have made headlines on major media outlets like Buzzfeed and Fox News. They became friends with the Prime Minister of Canada and other hard-to-meet celebrities. And they've exploded in popularity thanks to a partnership with Snapchat. All of their wins and amazing stories come down to a philosophy and a movement that they've dubbed the "Yes Theory". And it's what's helped them succeed in their quest to live out their dreams as full-time creators. More


8 Bots to Help Automate Your Business (and Get More Done, Faster)

As a busy entrepreneur, you’re likely wearing many hats and working long hours, especially in the early days of your business. Maybe it’s too early to hire staff, or you’re still struggling with delegating to the staff you have. It’s your baby, after all, built from scratch with your bare hands. But what if you could automate some of your daily tasks, leaving you more time to do what you do best? Enter bots. We’ve introduced bots for business in the past, specifically chatbots that perform tasks or return information based on a text or messenger “conversations” much like you’d have with a friend. But bots have evolved beyond their chatbot origins, communicating with us through voice, learning and adapting to our needs, and even talking among themselves. In a growing category in the Shopify App Store, bots help business owners run marketing campaigns, pair store functions with smart devices, and access data via chat. Check out our list of 8 bots, bot integrations, and automation tools that work with your Shopify store to help you get more done without actually cloning yourself. More


Selling Digital Products: There's More to It Than High Margins

Physical, digital or service-based products? You've got a lot of options when it comes to what you sell online. But what are the pros and cons of each? In this episode of Shopify Masters, you’ll learn from an entrepreneur who started a service-based business then transitioned to selling digital products and now to launching physical products—all to the same market. Eric Miller is the founder of UX Kits: a store that sells beautiful assets for creative professionals. Find out what he learned from selling tangible and intangible products, and what you need to consider beyond the high margins of digital downloads. More


13 Cognitive Biases in Ecommerce (and How to Use Them to Sell More)

We like to think we’re rational people making rational decisions. We pore over the data in our analytics dashboards, looking for trends among our customers. We carefully weigh the pros and cons of our own purchase decisions, arriving neatly at a logical choice. Right? Wrong. The truth is that the human brain is incredibly complex, contextual and emotional. There are dozens and dozens of cognitive biases, for example, influencing every decision you and your customers make. Here’s everything you need to know about some of the most common biases (and how to use them to your advantage). More


Branding Secrets from 14 Fashion Industry Experts

When does a sneaker become more than a sneaker? What makes a consumer choose one seemingly identical gown or coat or swimsuit over another? Emotion. Branding at its best, speaks to its intended audience like a BFF – it, like, really gets you. And in fashion, it stands up for you, becoming the outward-facing expression of your personality. For small brands and emerging designers, widespread logo recognition is an unattainable (or at least very far-away) goal. But branding is more than a logo. It encompasses values, voice, and design choices that run like a continuous thread through product and packaging and online presence. Good branding is storytelling – a consistent and continuous message, weaving meaning into every piece. How do your nail branding for your own fashion brand? 14 experts weighed in on the discussion. More


How to Find a Mentor as an Entrepreneur (Plus 6 Places to Look For One)

Successful entrepreneurs, or professionals in any field, aren’t made overnight: It takes them years of effort, of trial and error, to amass all the experience and knowledge that got them where they are today. These people who have “been there and done that” offer one of the most understated resources entrepreneurs can benefit from: mentorship . A good mentor can help you avoid common mistakes early on, solve troublesome problems, and offer up valuable connections and advice, while helping you realize your full potential as a person. Here's how to work with mentors on your entrepreneurial journey, and where to start your search for one. More


The Beginner's Guide to Getting More High Quality Traffic

You’ve launched your ecommerce store, you’ve shared it with friends and family, and now… you wait. But what happens when the traffic doesn’t come? If there’s no traffic, there’s no conversions. If there’s no conversions, there’s no profit. Worse, what happens if the traffic comes, but it’s all the wrong people? You know, people who aren’t likely to part with their money for your products because they’re the wrong demographic, the wrong segment. Fear not! Here’s how to get high quality traffic that’s relevant to your unique store. More


What You Need to Know About Supply Chain Management for Perishable Foods

Optimizing your supply chain for speed and efficiency is a challenge on its own. But when you're selling food with an expiration date, it gets a lot more complicated. In this episode of Shopify Masters, you’ll learn from an entrepreneur who has learned how to wrangle multiple vendors and suppliers together in a timely fashion to run his perishable food-based supply chain. Cameron Sheldrake is the founder of Off The Cob Chips: tortilla chips made with real sweet corn. More


How to Land Your Business in the Press: 6 Tactics and 5 Tools

Press. It's something every entrepreneur hopes to get for their business, but also something many find elusive. Don't worry, you're not alone. For most entrepreneurs, PR is a work in progress. Unless you’re working on a big launch, which are not regular occurrences, it’s about building a long-term relationship with media outlets and the appropriate reporters. Here are six strategies to keep in mind when looking to get your name in the press, and five tools to help you make it happen. More


How to Hire a Virtual Assistant (And Take Back Your Life)

When you’re starting out with your business, you’re doing it all: fulfilling orders, responding to customers, managing your social media, and so much more. But while we pursue entrepreneurship for many reasons, having less time in our lives isn’t one of them. That’s why the first “employee” many ecommerce entrepreneurs hire is a virtual assistant : someone who can take on the daily tasks and processes that are important for running your business, but not necessarily focused on growing it. If you’re experiencing stress and the other “good problems” that come with success, it might be time for you to consider hiring your own virtual assistant and get back some of those hours in your day. More


500,000 and You

Today, we take a moment—amid the exhilarating madness of our days as entrepreneurs, dreamers, and Shopifyers—to mark a milestone in the history of our movement. Shopify now powers over 500,000 online stores. More


Chip & Swipe Reader Now Available to all U.S. Businesses

Selling in person with Shopify has never been easier. Beautiful, simple, and secure, Shopify’s first in-house designed hardware—our new Chip & Swipe Reader—is now shipping in the U.S. In April, we unveiled our latest addition to the Shopify POS hardware family, and started shipping pre-orders in July. Now, we’re excited to announce that the Chip & Swipe Reader is available to all U.S. Shopify merchants. More


Coasting on Current Trends: How This Entrepreneur Identified a Profitable Niche

By following current trends within a niche, you might just find room for more entrepreneurship—if you can act fast enough. Adrian Brambila is the founder of Kick Push Skate, a store dedicated to providing retro hipster penny boards and gear. In this episode of Shopify Masters, you’ll learn how he uses current trends to find profitable opportunities to serve his audience. More


Introducing the New Merchant Overview Dashboard

In sales, data is power. More data? More power to analyze, compare, act. To boost your ability to make better, data-driven decisions at any time, we’ve made our Online Store Dashboard more comprehensive and effective, starting with this big change: if you’re a multi-channel merchant you’ll now have data from all your channels—not just your online store—right in front of you, in an easy-to-scan one-look overview. More


7 Free Content Creation Tools to Help You Earn More Engagement Online

The brands that stand out today are the ones that know how to get people going by producing clickable, shareable, irresistible media for their audiences to consume. Whether we’re talking about content marketing or social media marketing, this newfound focus is turning companies into producers, creators, and editors invested in content. But even without the budgets of all those bigger brands, there are plenty of free tools that can help you feed your audience's craving for fresh content. Whether you’re starting out or taking off with your business, here are 7 free tools (and some alternatives and resources) to help you create content that's hard not to share. More


How to Start a Business Before You Graduate (10 Kidpreneurs to Inspire You)

A 12-year-old pitches his business on Shark Tank. I’m watching it now on YouTube. At three times his age, hand plunged halfway into a bag of Cheetos, I realize: I am an underachiever. Have you ever wished that you could break the space-time continuum and deliver wisdom from the future to your teenage self? What life lessons, learned the hard way, would you impart? I’ve consulted some pretty bright young people to help me. These amazing kidpreneurs, both present and former, share their stories and advice for Generation Z. Here’s what I wish I'd known 25 years ago. More


The Best Way to Sell a Product for a Problem No One Wants to Talk About

Marketing is at its best when it can get a "hey, that's me!" out of your target audience. But what if your products address a problem that your customers would rather not openly discuss? In this episode of Shopify Masters, you’ll learn from an entrepreneur who had to get creative with his marketing and messaging in order to advertise products that solve bathroom-related problems. Meet Bobby Edwards, founder of Squatty Potty: the original toilet stool designed and made in the USA to give you the perfect posture for optimal elimination. More


5 Google Analytics Segments (and How to Use Them to Increase Revenue)

Google Analytics is like an iceberg. 91% of it is below the surface. So, when you’re browsing around the standard reports, checking your monthly visitor count or your daily revenue, you’re only getting about 9% of what Google Analytics has to offer. The rest is hidden below the surface, just waiting to be discovered. One of the best ways to start exploring the Google Analytics iceberg is through segments, both simple and advanced. More


Cashing in on Custom: Lessons from a 6-Figure Seasonal Candy Brand

When Sarah Hannington couldn’t find a company to custom print Valentine’s heart candies, she started her own business. Just a few years later, her 6-figure side gig, MyCustomCandy produces and ships personalized candy hearts to influencers, celebrities, businesses, and customers worldwide. Customization is touching every product from lipstick to initial-stamped luggage. Even large, mass-produced brands like Nike and New Balance recognized and jumped on the trend towards unique experiences for their unique customers. Sarah didn’t plan to start a custom business. She was just one consumer who happened to stumble upon a missed opportunity, a gap in an industry expected to reach $31 billion USD by 2021. Sarah shares the ups and downs of a custom seasonal business that scales beyond expectation year over year, and her secret to keeping her cool through every crisis. This is her story. More


How to Use Instagram Stories for Marketing (And Why You Should)

Traditional social media encourages us to put our best selves out there because what we publish stays out there. But there’s a new content format on the scene with a 24-hour life span that encourages sharing in a more authentic way. Instagram Stories are quickly gaining ground as a way to keep your most loyal followers engaged while leaving your content open for others to discover. Stories have changed the way we use Instagram, turning the platform into something more than just your online photo album. Here's how entrepreneurs and marketers can make the most of this new "here today, gone tomorrow" social media channel. More


Why Customer Lifetime Value Matters (and How to Calculate It for Your Business)

How do you measure your online store’s success? Do you typically focus on things like sales and revenue? While these metrics are useful for tracking the short-term performance of content and campaigns, they don’t always paint a complete picture of your business’ future. Even looking at your current sales numbers can sometimes leave you with just a fleeting glimpse of your true financial situation. Customer Lifetime Value (CLV) is one of the most important factors in determining your business’ present and future success. It’s an often-overlooked metric that can accurately predict how much your customers are really worth. By measuring the net profit that you’ll take in over the course of your entire relationship with a customer, you’ll be able to narrow down exactly how valuable they are to your business. More


How to Hire Employees 1 Through 20 (According to Mizzen+Main)

Companies are made up of people at the end of the day, and as established entrepreneurs will tell you about the early days, every new hire counts. But as you add more heads to your team, maintaining your company culture becomes harder. On this episode of Shopify Masters, you'll hear from Kevin Lavelle of Mizzen+Main, a brand that offers the best of advanced performance fabrics with the refined look of traditional menswear. Find out how he created a solid company culture from the ground up while building a 20-person team. More


13 Persuasion Techniques to Convince Ecommerce Visitors to Buy More

When running an ecommerce store, it’s easy to forget that visitor #3456 is a real, live person. A person subject to cognitive biases, persuasion techniques, psychological theories, etc. Having a basic understanding of some of the most popular persuasion techniques can put you ahead of the competition. You’ll have insight into how you can turn theory into practice, science into cold, hard cash. Here are 13 persuasion techniques that will give you an unfair advantage in the most important battlefield of all: the human brain. More


Introducing Checkout On Your Own Domain

Check this out... By the end of July, your customers will no longer be directed to checkout.shopify.com to complete their purchase. Instead, their entire shopping experience—from homepage to checkout—will take place on your domain. No more domain switching. More


How to Sell Makeup Online: The Ultimate Guide

It’s projected that the beauty industry in the US will reach an unfathomable $90 billion by 2020 . Want a slice of that pie? Go for it! But first: coffee. And second: ask yourself a few questions. What's your big idea? How is it different from what’s already on the market? Have you identified an audience for your products? How will you reach them? Is that audience underrepresented by current brands? Whether you're jumping on a current beauty trend, or building a cosmetics brand from scratch, we've packed everything you need to know into one handy guide. Learn how to sell makeup online through real examples from established beauty brands while we take you through the ins and outs of manufacturing, marketing, setting up your ecommerce store, and more. More


How to Pick the Perfect Theme for Your Shopify Store

"Don’t judge a book by its cover" is a saying we’ve all heard. In most cases it's a good mantra to live by. But the hard truth in the online business world is the layout and overall look and feel of your website can play a role in how your business is perceived. Visitors really do judge your store and business by its “cover”. That’s why it’s important to pick the perfect theme for your Shopify store . In this post, we’ll take a look at things to consider when picking a theme for your Shopify store so your business and products can shine in the light they deserve. More


How This Entrepreneur Built Relationships With Independent Retailers

Before you can get your products into retail stores, retailers need to trust that they have the potential to fly off the shelves. In this episode of Shopify Masters, you’ll hear from John DePaola, the creator of The Pain Brush Cover, who started selling his product door-to-door and ended up appearing on Shark Tank to get an offer that was 4X what he expected. More


4 Little-Known Ecommerce Email Campaigns You Can Steal to Grow Faster

Chances are, you’re doing some sort of email marketing for your ecommerce store. Why? As Michael Stelzner of Social Media Examiner once wrote, “Email is the glue that binds everything together.” That type of popularity, though, comes with a downside. It’s easy to get stuck sending the same old campaigns to the same old segments, hoping for the same old results. If you want to grow faster, you’ll need to think outside the box and build growth into your ecommerce email campaigns. More


7 Steps to Beautiful DIY Apparel Product Photography

High quality product photography is essential for apparel ecommerce. For many customers, your product images will determine whether or not they buy your product . But essential doesn’t have to mean expensive. The difference between professional and amateur is talent, equipment, and experience. If you have an eye for photography and a modest budget, follow these 7 steps to benefit from our experience and create beautiful apparel product images. More