How Much Does It Cost to Build a Shopify Website?


Ecommerce took a big leap in 2020 when the pandemic hit. A prime example would be Amazon’s founder Jeff Bezos. His net worth grew by $75 Billion dollars in 2020 alone.

Due to this, there were a lot of people who jumped on the bandwagon of starting an eCommerce business. Some profited and some did fail too.

If you are someone who has been wanting to start one, you would have had this question of how much it would cost you to build a Shopify/eCommerce website? right?

A Shopify website would cost you around $29/month to start, if you do all the designing and setting up part by yourself. Otherwise, if you hire someone, you could get a Shopify store built for an extra $30-$100. You would also need around $500-$1000 to run the store.

Things to BuyCost
Shopify Plan$29/month
Hire an Expert (Optional)$30-$100
Marketing PurposesMin. $500
Shopify Apps (Optional)Around $100
Theme (Optional)$9.5/month
Total Cost$739/-

If you exclude the 3 optional things that I have mentioned above, you will need a minimum of $529 to start and run your Shopify store.

Cost Breakdown

There are basically 2 things that you would need to spend on. A Shopify plan and a budget for marketing expenses are necessary to start and run the store. Spending money on a freelancer/expert, theme and apps are optional and You can buy them once you start making money from the store.

Shopify Plan

Shopify is one of the best eCommerce platforms on the market right now. It is the preferred platform for a lot of eCom experts and entrepreneurs. That’s mainly because of their easiness and the wide variety of functionalities that they offer.

Their pricing plan starts at $29/month which isn’t cheap and neither expensive. However, when you compare it with WooCommerce, you might find Shopify to be on the expensive side.

They do have higher pricing plans which you won’t ever need until and unless you start scaling.

Here are the pricing of all their plans:

The few advantages of selecting “Shopify” or “Advanced Shopify” are that:-

  • They offer more staff accounts: You will only need them once you start scaling your business.
  • Fewer Transactions fees:- If you use a third-party payment gateway, you will be charged anywhere from 0.5% – 2% per transaction (depends on the Shopify Plan). The only way to eliminate this is to activate Shopify’s own payment gateway (which is not available everywhere).
  • Advanced reporting: You won’t need them until you start scaling your business.

So, my point is, don’t select these plans if you are a beginner. The Basic Shopify plan would be more than enough

Related ArticleIs WordPress Good for Ecommerce?

Hire a Freelancer to Design your Store

If you are weak at designing or do not know how to do so in Shopify. I would recommend this freelancer for doing so.

I have personally used this service and can confidently say that it’s really good. This freelancer completely designs the website for you including the logo.

This service cost $30, but if you want to include a premium theme along with other features, you can select the Standard plan which costs $70.

This is optional and I would only recommend this only if you have the budget to do so. If you don’t have the budget, try learning how to create and design a Shopify store from Youtube.

Marketing Expenses

Marketing is the most important thing about starting this business. If you are poor at marketing, you would have a hard time making money.

The minimum amount of money that I would recommend you start with is at least $500. This is needed in order to test out your products with different demographics.

If you are planning to start a dropshipping store, you may need more than this depending on when you find a winning product.

If you are so weak at marketing, I would highly suggest you go to Youtube and find videos related to eCommerce marketing. Try to learn about Facebook ads, Youtube marketing, Influencer marketing, Snapchat ads, Tiktok ads, etc.

There are a lot of online courses based on marketing for eCommerce. Make sure you don’t pay for such courses as most courses teach what’s already there for free on Youtube.

If you already have an existing audience like an Instagram page, Youtube channel, or a blog with some traffic, you could monetize that traffic by promoting your products to them.

Related ArticleWhat Is The Average Profit Margin For a Dropshipping Business?

Shopify Apps

Shopify apps extend functionality to your online store. There are some apps that I highly recommend that you use in your store.

One thing to note is that these apps are optional and you do not need to buy them if you do not have the budget to do so.

These apps do help you increase your sales and I recommend them once you start getting some orders on your store.

Free apps are also available on the Shopify app store and you may use them as an alternative to the paid apps.

1. An Upsell App

An upsell app is used to increase your average order value. By recommending related products to your customers when they are checking out, you have a high chance of them buying them too.

For example: Let’s say you sell a TV remote. While the customer checks out, you ask them for some batteries for the remote. In almost all cases, the customer ends up buying the batteries along with the remote thereby increasing your sales and revenue.

2. An Email Marketing/ SMS Marketing App

Email marketing and SMS marketing apps are a must. They help you reach customers who have already bought from your store or someone who has abandoned their cart while checking out.

One thing that most people fail to understand is that; you have a higher chance of converting an already existing customer rather than converting a new customer.

So, Make sure you send emails or SMS to your customers regarding any sales or exclusive discounts.

3. Pop Up app

A pop-up is a great way to attract some customers to any discounts, or any sale that you have in your store.

An exit intent pop-up is what I use the most. It triggers when a person is trying to exit your store. This pop-up should contain some kind of offer or exclusive discount code which might make your visitor stick to your page and buy something.

You could also use this pop-up to collect emails, which can then be used to market your products or send discounts in the future.

4. Reviews App

A reviews app is a must for any store. Customers will only buy a product if they see some good reviews. There are a lot of apps that enable you to do this.

Also, while choosing an app, make sure it has a feature that lets customers upload photos or videos to your store.

Shopify Theme

At the time of writing this article, Shopify officially has only 9 free themes. The problem with this is that there are thousands of online stores that use these free themes.

In order to separate yourself from them, you have to be using a premium theme.

However, this is also an optional thing. If you are on a tight budget, you can skip this step. This won’t be necessary until you start building a unique brand.

Your theme is one of the most important parts of your online store. It will surely affect your sales. It doesn’t matter if you use a free or premium theme, make sure that it’s fast, looks good, and doesn’t have any awkward colors.

Now, if you are looking for a clean, minimal theme, I would recommend using Debutify. They do have an unlimited free plan. You may only choose to upgrade if you want to use their extra features.

There’s also another workaround for this, you could ask this freelancer to build an online store for you depending on your needs and they will include a premium theme with it.

Related ArticleIs Dropshipping Without Shopify Possible? (The Ultimate Guide)

Overall Costs and My Recommendation

So, the overall cost of starting a Shopify store can range anywhere from $500-$1000 depending on whether you buy the premium themes and apps.

What I would recommend is, start a Shopify store with the $29 plan. Use a clean theme like Debutify and design it. If you do not know how to design a website, outsource it to this freelancer. Install some free apps that can help you increase your sales like the Upsell app, email marketing app, etc. Then, with a budget of $500, start marketing your store using different techniques.

Am I Too Late to Start a Shopify Store?

This is one of the few questions that people ask a lot. No, you are not late. Ecommerce is just starting to take off. There’s still a huge potential in this industry.

If you already have a physical store, try to scale it by adding an online store too. You could easily increase your sales.

I hope this article helped in one way or the other. Share this with your friends or family who would want to know about this. Have a good day ahead!
Peace!

Ash

Founder of Stashlr. Writes about Blogging, Affiliate marketing, Dropshipping and everything else. Also happens to be a software engineer.

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