You just started an online store on Shopify. Congratulations!
But that’s just the first step to taking your products and services to the consumers. To actually get them to notice you, it’s going to take more than just marketing at the beginning.
It requires you to be where they are the most active at making online purchases!
Yes, we’re talking about one of the most debatable strategies to grow your online business on Shopify - Sales channels.
What are Shopify sales channels?
A sales channel essentially refers to a way in which a Shopify store takes its products to the business’s target market, either through direct or indirect routes. This includes online marketplaces and social media platforms.
Now if you’re wondering why you should even care about online sales channels, when you have a Shopify store of your own, let us explain.
Why should you use sales channels to increase Shopify sales?
We’ll give you a few reasons why you should consider integrating your Shopify stores with sales channels.
1. Get your brand more visibility
Sales channels - online marketplaces and social media platforms, have an established audience. They already have consumers who are actively engaging with brands and making purchases. So listing yourself there, gets your brand noticed too!
2. Get more sales on your products
Because consumers are already in the frame of mind of exploring brands and making purchases, you are more likely to get sales. And don’t worry, once you sell through a sales channel, you can always introduce these new customers to your online store and encourage them to make the purchase from the site next.
3. Get to your ideal customers for lesser
The cost of customer acquisition is increasing by the day - no matter what marketing or advertising channel you make use of. Since sales channels have their own audience already established, you get to cut down on your expenses of building an audience to introduce your products.
4. Get ready to streamline, scale and focus
Another advantage of listing your Shopify store products on sales channels is getting to focus on what you do best. Sales channels like online marketplaces have established processes like logistics in place. So you don’t need to focus on those aspects as you start to sell online!
Well, the good thing is that it is not even difficult to get started with sales channels. Shopify integrates seamlessly with most popular sales channels.
So this makes it easy for you to manage your inventory as well - no matter which sales channel and how many sales channels you’re selling on!
Popular online sales channels to use for more Shopify sales
1. Online Store
The first and foremost sales channel to know about when you want to sell online is your online store and checkout. When you start an online store on Shopify, you will need to pick a subscription plan to get a Shopify-hosted domain. You can also set up your own domain if you’re migrating from another platform to Shopify.
Why should you choose Shopify as your online store?
- Easy to set up an online store - you can literally get started in minutes
- Use readymade and customizable Shopify themes to brand your store design
- Set up advanced marketing and conversion features with the help of Shopify apps
- Strong community of app and service partners, and business owners supporting one another
- Easy to scale!
Need more reasons to choose Shopify for your online store as a sales channel? Read this.
Facebook is no longer just a social media platform for networking. With more than 2.89 billion monthly active users, Facebook is one of the biggest social media platforms. And with its marketplace, now it has a lot to offer to online businesses.
Why should you choose Facebook as your Shopify sales channel?
- 93% of businesses across the world being active on the channel
- About 78% of consumers make purchases through discoveries on Facebook
- Post and sell products directly from the Shop tab on your store’s Facebook page
- Manage all your inventory through the Shopify store
Want to set up Facebook as your sales channel? Read this step-by-step guide.
3. Buy button
If you’re someone who has a website or blog, you can actually sell your products through them too. This includes CMS including WordPress and Squarespace; and you can just embed buy buttons that connect with your Shopify checkout.
Why should you choose the Buy button as an added sales channel?
- Buy Buttons help you add your products to your external website and blog posts
- make purchasing the products easier for customers by removing the need to go to a separate page to finalize their order
- You can track Buy Button orders from your Shopify admin (the Buy Button sales channel is included in all Shopify subscription plans)
Want to use the Buy Button to your website or blog? Read this step-by-step guide.
There are more than 1.3 billion active monthly users of Facebook Messenger. The conversational channel is clearly an opportunity for online businesses to sell as of today.
Why should you choose Facebook Messenger as your sales channel?
- Sell directly from conversations with customers
- Send order and shipping notifications
- Respond to customer questions and turn them into sales
- Use the Messenger channel with Shopify Inbox
Want to set up Messenger as your sales channel? Read this step-by-step guide.
With roughly one billion monthly active users, Instagram is also one of the most popular social networking channels worldwide. It’s visual-first approach makes it an even more suited platform to showcase your products and entice consumers to buy from you.
Why should you choose Instagram Shopping as a sales channel?
- 80% of Instagram users are influenced to make a purchase by what they see on the channel
- 130 million Instagram users tap on shopping posts every month
- Sell products on Instagram by tagging them when they appear in posts
- Manage product inventory easily on your Shopify store admin
Want to start using Instagram as a sales channel for your Shopify store? Read this to set up Instagram Shopping.
6. Wholesale channel
If you’re a business that has products to sell to other businesses, you can actually set up a separate, password-protected storefront for these customers. But the wholesale channel is only when you’re on Shopify Plus.
Why should you choose wholesale as a sales channel?
- Sell the same products at different prices
- Add wholesale-only products
- Expand your business into wholesale
- Wholesale customers and orders are trackable on Shopify admin
Want to set up a wholesale channel for your Shopify store? Read this guide.
A popular wholesale marketplace where you could list your business and wholesale products is Handshake. It lets you reach out to and sell online with retailers.
Why should you choose Handshake as a sales channel?
- Get your business discovered by retailers
- Connects you (the merchant who sells wholesale) with retailers
- There are no commission fees for selling and buying on the Handshake marketplace
Want to get started on Handshake as a sales channel? Read this step-by-step guide.
How to choose the best Shopify sales channel?
There are a number of sales channels that you can leverage to sell more online. But that does not mean that you need to be everywhere!
To keep your efforts streamlined and remain focused, you need to be where your target audience and ideal customers are. Here are a few things to get answers to before setting up a sales channel:
1. What is your business model?
- Are you manufacturing your own products?
- Are you dropshipping?
- Are you making most of your revenue by selling wholesale?
2. What is your payment processing cycle?
- What are the payment channels you use to accept orders?
- How do these channels work with the potential sales channel?
- Does your profit margin support the commission fee for the channel?
3. What is your target audience’s purchase habit?
- Which channels do your ideal customers use to shop online?
- Are your products designed for mass appeal or do they have a specific audience?
4. What is your brand’s positioning in the market?
- Are you positioned as an upscale, luxury brand? Your channel needs to help you convey that!
5. What are your business goals?
- What do you want to achieve with the sales channel?
- What are your immediate goals (more sales, revenue, profits)?
6. What are the types of products you sell?
- What category do your products fall under?
- How frequently does your audience need your products?
- Is the need for your products influenced by seasons, market changes, etc?
7. What are the pros and cons of the potential sales channel?
- How does the sales channel help you reach your audience?
- What are the tools and features it offers to help you sell online?
- What are the possible challenges you may face when setting up the channel?
Now even if you have it all figured out, there is another aspect you need to take into account - your Shopify store’s eligibility for the sales channel you want to be on.
How to check for channel eligibility for your Shopify store?
Before you add a sales channel to your Shopify store, you will need to change some settings to meet eligibility requirements of some platforms.
If your store does not meet the eligibility requirements of a specific sales channel, it appears as ‘Unavailable’ in your Shopify admin. You can click on ‘You can’t add this channel’ to also see why your store isn’t eligible, to make the required adjustments.
For example, there are some channels that will limit the information you showcase on the product listing. Others may require you to offer specific delivery time as well.
How to add or delete an online sales channel to your Shopify admin?
Watch this how-to video made by Shopify on adding and deleting sales channels to your store:
Here are the steps you need to follow:
- Go to Shopify admin
- Click the + button beside Sales channels
- Click on Add sales channel
- Select the sales channel you want to add
- Click add channel
Do you need Shopify sales channels to sell more?
We’d say, yes.
In times when the competition for consumer attention is growing by the day, it’s important to be present where they are the most active.
Sales channels are like platforms with an established audience. Being present and selling on these channels, helps you drive more attention to your brand, and eventually also get consumers to your Shopify store.
Yes, it might seem like you’re having to pay commission to the sales channels initially. But the visibility you get will help you grow faster.
Think about the number of times you purchased a brand's product from Amazon because you trust the retailer’s delivery policies. But later on, once the experience was good, you went straight to their store to make the purchase.
That’s exactly the reason why we recommend Shopify stores to explore sales channels.
Need help selecting a sales channel for your Shopify store? Reach out to our Shopify experts for a consultation.