Ecommerce Growth

Ultimate Shopify Plus Checklist: Prepare Your Store for 2024

Ecommerce Growth

Ultimate Shopify Plus Checklist: Prepare Your Store for 2024

Is preparing your Shopify store for a scalable and successful future a challenge you're currently tackling? Do the technical details and strategic steps involved in setting up Shopify Plus feel overwhelming? You're not alone. As experts in Shopify Plus at First Pier, we constantly encounter clients who are eager to expand their online presence but are unsure of where to start or how best to optimize their platforms.

Stepping up to Shopify Plus is a big move that comes with major potential benefits - lower credit card processing rates, unlimited staff accounts, superior permission settings, and more. Yet, the leap to Shopify Plus can feel intimidating without a clear roadmap. That's why we've compiled the ultimate Shopify Plus checklist to guide you smoothly through the journey, whether you're a seasoned Shopify merchant or you're new to this robust platform.

To get started, here's a high-level overview of our Shopify Plus checklist:

  1. Prepare and finalize a detailed project plan, including your business goals, sales models, and pricing plans.
  2. Set up your online store, including entering your business information, configuring your domain, and planning for shipping, taxes, and payment gateways.
  3. Choose and customize your Shopify theme, organize and add products, and set up a blog to engage your audience.
  4. Test the store functionality and check out the process to ensure a smooth customer experience.
  5. Go live with your Shopify Plus store, and prepare for post-launch activities that will ensure continuous growth.

Shopify Conversion Checklist - shopify plus checklist infographic pillar-4-steps

In the sections that follow, we'll dive into the nitty-gritty of these steps, taking you from understanding Shopify Plus's benefits to setting up your store, preparing for launch, and thriving beyond. Buckle up and let's journey into an optimized, profitable future with Shopify Plus!

Understanding Shopify Plus: What It Includes and Why It's Worth It

As we at First Pier often say, making the shift to Shopify Plus is a strategic move aimed at boosting your online store's performance and sales. But what does Shopify Plus include, and why is it truly worth it?

The Benefits of Shopify Plus Over Regular Shopify

If you're wondering whether Shopify Plus is better than regular Shopify, here's a simple answer: It is. Shopify Plus is designed to provide support for higher revenue merchants, offering all the standard Shopify features and more.

One of the key benefits of Shopify Plus over regular Shopify is the exclusive functionality it offers for wholesale sales. If you're planning to sell wholesale or already doing so, Shopify Plus allows you to create a separate, password-protected storefront accessible only to wholesale buyers. This built-in wholesale functionality is a crucial component for a successful omnichannel strategy, something we often stress to our clients at First Pier.

Lower Credit Card Processing Rates with Shopify Plus

Another compelling reason to switch to Shopify Plus is the significantly lower credit card processing rates. For regular Shopify merchants, the Shopify Payments rate is 2.4% + $.30 per transaction, but for Shopify Plus merchants, it can be as low as 2.15% + $. As Steve from First Pier explains, if your business is bringing in more than $5 million annually, it's not only better but also cheaper to be running on Shopify Plus.

Unlimited Staff Accounts and Additional Permission Settings

As you scale your business, you need to grow your team accordingly. Shopify Plus supports unlimited staff accounts, helping you expand your personnel without incurring additional costs. But it's not just about the numbers; it's also about control. Shopify Plus provides additional permission settings, giving you more control over your team's actions in your Shopify admin. These include separate report export permissions and permissions to specific apps.

In short, Shopify Plus is designed to support and streamline your business growth. It offers a host of benefits, from lower transaction fees to enhanced staff account settings. But remember, these benefits are just the beginning. As we move along our Shopify Plus checklist, you'll discover the various ways to leverage this platform for maximum results.

Preparing Your Store for Shopify Plus: A Comprehensive Checklist

Transitioning to Shopify Plus can feel like a big step, but it doesn't have to be overwhelming. We've put together this comprehensive checklist to guide you through the process and make sure you're fully prepared.

Deciding on a Shopify Plus Pricing Plan

The first step is to have a clear understanding of your business goals. Are you planning to sell both online and in-person? Do you want to leverage social media channels like Facebook for sales? Your answers to these questions will guide your decision on the best Shopify Plus pricing plan for your business.

Entering Information About Your Store and Setting Up Your Domain

Next, it's time to enter essential business details. This includes your store name, legal business name, and business address. Your store name will be part of your default Shopify URL, so choose wisely. Setting up your domain is also crucial at this stage, ensuring customers can find your store online.

Choosing a Theme and Adding Products

A visually appealing store is key to customer engagement. Experiment with different themes to find one that best represents your brand. Once you've chosen a theme, start adding your products. Depending on the number of products you offer, this might be the most time-consuming part of the setup. So, give yourself plenty of time to add, organize, and set the necessary tax and shipping information.

Organizing Products into Groups

Organizing your products into groups not only makes your store easier to navigate, but it also helps with SEO. Consider creating collections or categories based on product type, price range, or any other criteria that make sense for your business.

Testing the Checkout Process with Test Orders

Before you go live, it’s important to thoroughly test your store. Make some test orders to see how the checkout process works. This will give you a chance to spot any issues or bottlenecks that could affect your customers' shopping experience.

Removing the Password and Adding a Chat Widget

Once you're satisfied with your store setup, you can remove the online store password, making your store accessible to the public. Adding a chat widget can also be a great way to provide quick customer support and answer any questions visitors might have.

Adding Other Online Sales Channels to Your Shopify Store

The final step in preparing your store for Shopify Plus is considering other online sales channels. Shopify Plus integrates with multiple online channels such as Amazon, eBay, Instagram, and more, allowing you to sell your products across various platforms.

And there you have it! By following this comprehensive checklist, you'll be well on your way to a successful launch with Shopify Plus. In the next section, we'll delve into the importance of B2B wholesale in Shopify Plus and how it can further boost your business growth.

The Importance of B2B Wholesale in Shopify Plus

As we continue our journey through this Shopify Plus Checklist, it's time to delve into B2B wholesale. Wholesale plays a crucial role in expanding the reach of your business, opening doors to new markets and larger orders.

Transitioning from the Plus Wholesale Channel

If you're already a Shopify user and have been utilizing the Plus wholesale channel, it's important to prepare for a smooth transition to B2B Wholesale. Shopify provides a migration checklist to guide you through this process. It's a thorough step-by-step guide, designed to ensure that nothing falls through the cracks during the transition.

The Benefits of Selling Wholesale on Shopify Plus

One of the key reasons why Shopify Plus is a game-changer for businesses is its robust wholesale capabilities. Shopify Wholesale, a dedicated feature available on the Shopify Plus plan, is specifically designed to support high-volume transactions and pricing models.

This feature allows you to offer the same products to your wholesale customers but at different, often discounted, prices. You can even add wholesale-only products that are not available in your retail store. This flexibility enables you to cater to a wider range of customers and meet their specific needs.

Moreover, you can track all your wholesale customers and orders right under your Shopify admin dashboard. It's akin to having a dedicated wholesale channel, fully integrated with your current retail e-commerce setup, all under a single roof.

Creating a Separate Password Protected Storefront for Wholesale Buyers

To enhance the B2B experience for your wholesale customers, Shopify Plus allows you to create a separate, password-protected storefront specifically for them. This not only adds an extra layer of exclusivity but also allows you to tailor the shopping experience to suit the needs of your wholesale customers.

In this separate storefront, you can display your entire product catalog or a curated selection, set minimum purchase amounts, and offer volume-based discounts. This functionality is a crucial part of the Shopify Plus plan and can play a significant role in your wholesale success.

In summary, B2B Wholesale in Shopify Plus provides you with a powerful toolset to expand your business reach, cater to a wider customer base, and boost your sales. With the right preparation and mastery, you can unleash the full potential of Shopify Plus for your wholesale success. The next part of our Shopify Plus checklist will guide you through the final stages of preparing your store for launch.

The Shopify Plus Go-Live Guide: A Detailed Walkthrough

As your go-live date approaches, the final stages of your Shopify Plus checklist involve a series of checks and setups. These steps are crucial to ensure a seamless and successful launch. At First Pier, we recommend the following activities:

Preparing to Go Live: Checking Order Flow, Integrations, Analytics Setup, and DNS Settings

Before launching, you need to thoroughly check your order flow and ensure all your integrations are working correctly. You should also set up any data tracking and confirm your DNS settings and servers at least four weeks ahead of your go-live date.

Data and Content Migration

Migrating your data and content to Shopify Plus involves transferring all your products, customers, and order data. This step is critical to ensure a smooth transition and to prevent any data loss or disruption to your business operations.

Organizing Data and Ensuring Front-End Appearance

Organize your customers, products, and orders using tags, and group your products into collections for easier navigation. Also, pay attention to your store's front-end appearance. A well-designed and user-friendly interface can significantly enhance the shopping experience for your customers.

Setting Up Apps, Integrations, Discounts, and Price Rules

Shopify Plus offers a variety of Shopify-supported apps and integrations as well as third-party apps and integrations to enhance your store's functionality. You should set up these tools based on your business needs. Also, configure your discounts and price rules to attract and retain customers.

Store Settings, Checkout and Order Creation, Automation, and Order Management

Configure your store details, add staff, and set up payment methods in your store. Customize your checkout style and behavior. For instance, you can choose your checkout language and make customer accounts optional or mandatory. Set up automation for repetitive tasks and manage your orders effectively.

Expansion Stores, DNS Settings, Analytics, and Final Steps to Go Live

If you plan to sell in multiple regions, consider setting up expansion stores. Adjust your DNS settings, and set up analytics to track your store's performance. Once all these steps are completed, you're ready to go live!

Launching your Shopify Plus store is only the start. Post-launch, it's crucial to regularly review and optimize your store based on performance data and customer feedback. With the right approach and the support of an expert team like ours at First Pier, you're well on your way to e-commerce success.

Post-Launch Tasks for Your Shopify Plus Store

After successfully launching your Shopify Plus store, there are a few additional tasks to be undertaken. These tasks further solidify your store's presence on the web and ensure a smooth shopping experience for your customers. Let's walk through these important post-launch steps in our Shopify Plus checklist.

Changing the A and CNAME Records

The A (Address) record of your root domain needs to be pointed to Shopify's IP address. This directs web traffic from your domain name to your Shopify store. Similarly, the CNAME (Canonical Name) record needs to be changed to your Shopify-hosted domain. This essentially tells the internet that your website can be found at a certain location. It's like providing the exact address of your store in the vast city of the internet.

This step is crucial because it ensures that when customers type in your website address, they are directed to your Shopify store rather than an error page. It may sound a bit technical, but don't worry, Shopify provides clear and detailed guides to help you navigate through this process.

Connecting the Domain in Shopify

Now that you've updated your DNS settings, the next step is to connect your domain in Shopify. This allows Shopify to verify that you own the domain and that it’s set up correctly. Connecting your domain includes adding your domain to your Shopify store and verifying the connection. Shopify has a step-by-step guide on how to connect your domain which makes this process straightforward.

Setting the Primary Domain

If you have multiple domains, Shopify allows you to set one as your primary domain. This is the domain name that customers see in the address bar while they browse your online store. All your other domains will redirect traffic to your primary domain. This helps to keep your branding consistent and ensures a smooth navigation experience for your customers. You can set your primary domain in Shopify with just a few clicks.

Removing the Online Store Password

Lastly, you'll want to remove your online store password. During the setup and testing phase, a password is useful to keep your store hidden from the public. However, once you're ready to welcome customers, removing the password allows anyone to visit your store and start shopping. This can be done easily within your Shopify settings.

Following this comprehensive Shopify Plus checklist and completing these tasks post-launch solidifies your store's online presence and ensures a seamless shopping experience for your customers. At First Pier, we're here to assist you at every step of your Shopify journey. Now, let's get ready to welcome your first customers!


Recap of the Shopify Plus Checklist

We've taken a deep dive into the Shopify Plus checklist, a comprehensive guide to preparing your store for successful launch and operation on the Shopify Plus platform. From deciding on a Shopify Plus pricing plan and setting up your store's domain, to organizing your products and ensuring a seamless checkout process, each step plays a pivotal role in the success of your online store.

We've also explored the importance of B2B wholesale in Shopify Plus and how creating a separate storefront for wholesale buyers can open up new avenues for revenue growth. We've walked you through detailed steps to go live, including checking order flow, integrating apps, setting up discounts, and managing orders. Lastly, we discussed important post-launch tasks, such as changing DNS records and removing online store passwords, to ensure a seamless transition for your customers.

Final Thoughts on Preparing Your Store for Shopify Plus in 2024

As the eCommerce landscape continues to evolve, so too should your online store. Preparing for Shopify Plus isn't just about ticking items off a checklist - it's about strategically positioning your business for success in a digital-first world. Shopify Plus offers a robust, scalable platform that empowers high-volume businesses to succeed. However, like any tool, its effectiveness lies in how well you use it.

Preparation is key. A well-prepared Shopify Plus store is not only equipped to handle high-volume traffic and sales but is also poised to deliver a seamless, enjoyable experience that keeps customers coming back.

At First Pier, we're committed to helping you make the most of your Shopify Plus journey. Our team of Shopify experts is ready to assist you at every stage of your eCommerce journey, from initial setup to ongoing optimization.

As you gear up for a successful 2024 with Shopify Plus, we encourage you to refer back to this checklist as often as needed. And remember, we're just a click away should you need any assistance. Here's to a successful launch and a prosperous year ahead!

For more information, check out our additional resources on Shopify Plus features and our complete eCommerce functionality checklist.

Shopify Plus 2024 - shopify plus checklist

Your journey to Shopify Plus success begins now. Let's get started.

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