Shopify is undoubtedly one of the most popular ecommerce platforms business owners use today. Its demand is generated from a host of reasons, it’s affordable, customizable, secure, has tech support and comes with plenty of tools to boost the marketing side of things.

One of Shopify’s biggest marketing claims is that it’s easy to use and setup. Want to make a bit of cash on the side or quickly setup your new business? Shopify is the ecommerce platform for you! This holds true to an extent and is definitely easier to use compared to other ecommerce platforms such as Magento or BigCommerce.

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Yet, you shouldn’t expect your Shopify dinghy to sail too smoothly. You’re still going to experience the odd hiccup here and there as you come across some common obstacles that with Shopify’s inflexibility. Below I will discuss some of the issues you can expect to come across, some you may have to accept, some you can fix yourself via a plugin or app and for some you may have to seek external help.

A Good Read : Battle of the Storefronts: WooCommerce vs Shopify!

International Cart Abandonment

When expanding globally, many business owners run into the problem of losing sales at checkout due to the currency changing to a foreign currency, or unfamiliar payment method. Customers feel deceived, resulting in high cart abandonment rates.

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Creating multiple stores is one solution to this problem. You can create another fully customizable store for your customers, making sure you revise any embarrassing cultural or lingual translations. This does require you to manage orders and inventory in two seperate back ends as well as pay fees for multiple stores.

To help sync and create multiple outstanding stores, it’s recommended that you hire an experienced Shopify web developer.

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CMS Compatibility

Including content on your website is very important. Outstanding content is another way businesses can provide solutions for their customers whilst boosting SEO rankings. Simply put, if content is going to a major part of your store, then you may want to rethink your approach.

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To include content, you want to integrate Shopify into an existing website. Many people want the functionality of Shopify, yet don’t want to give up the features of their preferred CMS. The most common scenario involves Wordpress; for those who want to start selling products or services on their WordPress blog, consider installing WP Shopify.

If you’re website wasn’t created through a popular CMS, I’d recommend Javascript Buy SDK. This library allows you to add products and a shopping cart to any site, but likely requires the expertise of a Shopify expert.

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Achieving a Multilingual Store

This doesn’t refer to literal translation issues for multiple stores, where one phrase means something completely different in another language or culture, e.g KFC’s “finger lickin good,” translated to “we’ll eat your fingers off” in Chinese.

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If your target audience is bilingual, you want your store to effectively communicate with its entirety, without alienating anyone. Unfortunately, Shopify doesn’t support multi language stores, but there are a couple solutions and you should consider the pros and cons of each.

1. Use a Multilingual Theme

For including multiple languages in a singular store, the most common theme to use is ‘Bilingual.’ However, to have multilingual capabilities, your store becomes restricted to the theme, meaning you lose uniqueness.

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2. Google Translate Widget

This is an easy and cheap option that allows customers to translate your store into their language of choice. However, Google’s translations are not foolproof and may leave you suspect to an embarrassing blunder.

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Search Mistakes

The other problem is that Shopify search does not account for spelling mistakes. Ideally a customer with an incorrect search would be provided with suggestions or a “did you mean x.” There are plenty of plugins that can solve this issue, such as Adept Search or ‘Instant Search +.’ Most plugins will provide a free trial period, so take advantage of this before deciding which plugin you’d like to subscribe to. Pick the plugin in which you use the most features!

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Multiple Locations vs Incompatible Apps

In September 2018, Shopify introduced the much needed ‘Locations’ which allowed users that had more than one physical location to manage shipping, orders and inventory with greater visibility. This simplified the process for many retailers who previously had to create multiple accounts for each POS system.

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What’s important to consider is that enabling Locations is irreversible, meaning that you cannot go back to the previous way your store functioned once enabled. For some, this was still a no brainer, for others this was problematic as apps they previously depended on did not function with Locations. Therefore, you either have to find a new app that works or you have to wait for the app to update itself so that it becomes compatible.

Before enabling Locations, thoroughly check compatibility of those apps that provide you value. Perhaps it may not be the time to use Multiple Locations just yet and even though it will simplify business processes at some point, currently it will cause more harm than good.

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As stated earlier, some of the obstacles can be fixed through a plugin, some we hope Shopify will find a better solution for in the future and some are best tackled by a specialized developer. Hiring external assistance allows store owners to invest their energy in the product or service themselves, which your customers will thank you for!

For cost-effective Shopify ecommerce development, I would recommend the team at CodeClouds. Their Shopify experts are up to date with the latest technology and therefore understand the latest obstacles and solutions for Shopify users

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