Note: The information in this article regarding commissions refers to the old version of the Shopify partner program. It is being kept as-is for archiving purpose so people can see what the Shopify partner program used to be.
Looking for something different to promote on your blog? Something easy, that doesn’t require a new, separate niche blog and a complicated ad campaign? Today we’re going to talk about the Shopify partner program, and before you roll your eyes and sigh, trust me – this is a product that can be promoted on any blog, in any niche, no matter your target audience. Ready? Let’s rock!
What Is Shopify?
Shopify is an online platform for small to mid-size ecommerce stores.
Now stay with me. I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking, “Pfft! This is one of those make-money-online products and I already know my readers won’t be interested.” But you’re wrong…
There are readers in every audience who will be interested in Shopify, and with a potential $358 commission PER SALE you really don’t want to pass this up.
Shopify has been in existence since 2006. Currently there are more than 42,000 Shopify shops online and in 2012 they had a combined total of 9.9 million orders and $742 million in sales.
You can read my Shopify review if you want, but here’s a brief run-down on what makes them different from other ecommerce solutions like Amazon, Ebay, Etsy, Magento and Volusion:
Hosted by Shopify: Building your own reliable online store is difficult, to say the least. You have to install shopping cart software, payment processing software, software to handle taxes, customer support software and that’s just the beginning, that doesn’t even include the website itself. Trying to make everything sync without gobbling up your bandwidth is a real headache, which is why most smaller businesses look at options like those mentioned above.
Shopify hosts your shop and they handle all – and I do mean ALL – of the internal programming you need to run your business smoothly. You just name your shop, upload product images and descriptions and you’re ready to sell.
User-Friendly: Shopify is geared for the beginner (But don’t let that fool you – keep reading!). Creating your shop is as easy as typing in your store’s name, your name and a password.
Professional Design: Even the most basic, free themes are completely customizable and the designs are amazing. Honestly, I don’t know how people make money with an Etsy shop or by selling products on Amazon or Ebay. Their layouts do nothing to make your products shine. But the Shopify layouts, even the free ones, look like you hired a professional web designer to set up your shop.
Search Engine Optimization: First, you can use your own domain name which, in my opinion, is a major plus. When customers buy something on Ebay, Amazon, or Etsy they tell their friends, “I bought it on Amazon!” (or Ebay or Etsy). They don’t remember your name or the name of your business – at all. So the ability to use your own domain name makes your shop searchable with the search engines and increases brand awareness among shoppers.
Shopify also uses H1, H2, and H3 tags for headings and sub-headings, you have the ability to add titles and title tags, you can create anchor text links, and you can use categories and collections – all of which means better search engine optimization.
Integrated Blog: This is what really sets Shopify apart from all the rest, even the big, expensive guns – each shop has an integrated blog.
Now you and I both know the SEO benefits of having a blog. You have all those URLs on the search engine indexes and you can target competitive keywords. When you share one of your links you’re not just linking to a boring Amazon or Etsy, listing you’re actually linking to an informative blog post.
Plus a blog helps you engage your audience, and while you have their attention… hey… there’s your online store! You don’t have to try to get them to click a link and go to another site, and you don’t have to worry about trying to make that other site and your online store reflect the same brand.
Affordability: If you’re serious about your online business you’re paying at least $25 a month for web hosting. If you want to add an ecommerce store to your website you’re going to have to invest in some very expensive software and probably hire a designer. We’re talking major investment here if you want everything to run smoothly and if you actually want to see sales.
Or, you can spend $40 a month plus a transaction fee on each sale and try to sell your products on Amazon. Of, you can spend 20 cents a listing plus a transaction fee and try to sell on Etsy, or you can join the already over-crowded Ebay marketplace and really rack up some listing and selling fees.
Like I said, Shopify is geared for small to mid-size ecommerce businesses. For just $29 a month and a two percent transaction fee you can list up to 100 products and you’ll have unlimited bandwidth. Plus you’ll have all the benefits mentioned above.
Even if you don’t sell a single product you’re still saving money in hosting, software and maintenance fees – especially since you don’t have to pay separate hosting for a blog.
For just $59 a month you can list up to 2,500 products with only a one percent transaction fee, and for larger businesses, for just $179 a month you can list an unlimited number of products with zero transaction fees – no matter how many items you sell each month.
Let’s Get To The Point: What’s In It For Affiliates?
Remember, Shopify is a product you can promote on any blog, no matter the niche. I’ll explain more in a minute, but first let’s talk about money and opportunity.
1. Shopify Commission Plans: Amazing
Shopify offers two commission plans to choose from:
200 Percent Per Sale: The “per sale” commission means that each time one of your referrals opens up a Shopify ecommerce store you earn 200% of his subscription fee, up to $358 per sale. This is a one-time only payment, per customer.
20 Percent Per Month: This option means that for each customer your refer you’ll receive 20% of his monthly Shopify bill, including his transaction fees. This stays in effect for as long as your referral remains a Shopify customer and you can earn up to $35 per month, per customer.
2. Shopify Quality Product With a Wide-Open Market
When I look for an affiliate product to promote I look for two things:
Is it a quality product?
I’ve been researching ecommerce sites for a few years now and I’ve paid particularly close attention to Amazon, Ebay and Etsy. So trust me when I tell you that all three of those sites – put together – don’t hold a candle to Shopify. The benefits of that Shopify blog combined with the user-friendly dash, the attention to SEO and the truly remarkable theme designs make Shopify unbeatable and unstoppable. In my opinion it’s the only choice for a professional ecommerce business.
Is there a market for this product?
I think Shopify’s already astronomical results prove there’s a market for this product and I’ll go into more detail in a minute. I also think if you look at Amazon, Ebay, Etsy, Zazzle, and other similar sites you’ll see there’s a real demand for online ecommerce solutions. There’s also a major, humongous need for quality online ecommerce solutions, especially in the small to mid-size business arena.
On the other end of the spectrum, there are other options, such as Magento and Volusion, that offer the high-quality solutions but they’re not user-friendly, the costs involved are astronomical, and they don’t have the integrated blog and SEO benefits you get with Shopify.
Essentially, Shopify is the only ecommerce solution that fills in the gap, providing an affordable high-quality presentation with tremendous SEO benefits that anyone, even a beginner, can immediately access and use.
3. What About Market Saturation?
Here’s the real beauty of promoting Shopify on your blog: Every blogger on the planet could promote this product and the market would never be saturated. Why? Let me explain…
There is no “one ideal user” for Shopify. Anybody who wants to sell something online would benefit from this “product.” So let’s take a look at some blogging scenarios:
If you blog about Baby Care you undoubtedly have some readers in your audience who knit, crochet, or do other needlework and crafts, and some of them would love the opportunity to pick up a few extra bucks. Introduce them to Shopify. Selling their handmade products online, using Shopify, is an affordable solution with much better opportunities for success than any of those other sites – even Etsy.
If you blog about celebrities, movies, or gaming, you undoubtedly have readers in your audience who sell memorabilia on Ebay. Again, Shopify is a much more affordable solution with a much more professional appearance for their shops.
If you blog about fashion or design your probably have readers who design their own jewelry, clothing and accessories. Some of them probably even have an Etsy shop. I can’t stress enough how much Shopify’s blog and attention to internal SEO makes a difference. If I had an Etsy shop I’d move it to Shopify in a heartbeat.
If your blog offers advice for small businesses of any type then most of your readers are looking for ecommerce solutions, either to promote their own products or their own services. Most small business owners don’t have the time or money to set up their own online store, and forget about setting up a separate blog to help promote it. Shopify is the perfect, affordable solution.
If you blog to authors and writers they can sell their books and articles. If you blog to freelancers they can use Shopify to promote their services. If you blog to app designers, they can sell their apps. Anybody can sell anything on Shopify.
No matter what your niche, no matter your audience, there’s somebody reading your blog who is either already selling something online or they want to but don’t know how to get started. Introduce them to Shopify.
How To Promote Shopify To Your Readers
Not really sure you can sell it to your readers? Sure you can. Read on!
When you’re thinking about promoting a new affiliate product there’s always the thought, in the back of your mind, that maybe you should set up a new niche blog so you can really target your traffic. Or, at the very least, you’re thinking about creating a new category on your blog, a little space off to the side, strictly dedicated to promoting this new product.
With Shopify, not to worry. Because no matter what you’re blogging about there’s someone out there who’s going to be interested. Here’s how to promote Shopify on any blog.
1. Make It Relevant
The key is to make it relevant for your readers. Not everyone in your audience is going to be interested, but at $358 a sale, it’s worth at least a couple of blog posts, right? Don’t just spout the general benefits of Shopify because each audience has different needs and concerns. Why would your specific readers be interested?
- College kids always need extra money. They could sell T-shirts or term papers on Shopify.
- New moms always need extra money. They could sell crafts, food products, or online services like writing or VA skills.
- Artisans need an online platform that really highlights there work.
- Small businesses need user-friendly affordable solutions that will help them grow their online brand, especially small businesses trying to conquer local markets.
- Larger businesses need affordable powerful solutions they can easily scale.
Take a spin around Shopify yourself or read my review and learn about all the features and benefits Shopify has to offer. Then promote those that would be most relevant to your specific audience because there’s someone out there who’s just waiting for this opportunity.
2. Compare Features And Benefits
Each audience will have different needs. For example, B2B’s might already have a website where they promote their services but chances are they don’t have a blog or, if they do they’re not maintaining it. Tell them about all the SEO benefits of Shopify, including the integrated blog.
Some of your B2B’s may be using one of the more expensive ecommerce solutions. Point out the cost savings with Shopify, including the fact that hosting is included, a blog’s included and they can get rid of that expensive designer they’ve been paying to maintain their online store.
Small businesses, crafters, college kids – these people all need something better than Ebay and Etsy. Shopify gives them a better design for promoting their products, it’s more affordable, and it’s easier to use.
3. Include A Strong Call To Action
Next, include a strong call to action and send your readers to Shopify. And this is perfect timing. Right now, Shopify is offering a free two-week trial to let anybody who’s interested take their site for a spin and see how it works.
And trust me – once your readers see how easy it is to use and how beautiful their shops are going to look, they’ll be hooked. And you’ll earn yourself a pretty nice commission!