In part 2 of our Manufacturers’ Guide to Shopify we’ll review adding products to your store.
Manufacturers are setting up their own Shopify stores to earn new revenue through ecommerce. In this three part tutorial, we’re teaching you how to set up your own store in three 20 minute lessons. In part one, we went over the basics of setting up your account, choosing a theme, setting up payments and customizing your checkout. In part two, we’ll learn how to customize shipping, add a product, variants, and how to view your store online while you work on it.
Step 6: Customize your shipping.
Choose “Settings” from the left-hand navigation.
Make sure your address is correct and the one you want to show on shipping labels as your company’s return address.
Zones and rates
You can leave these as defaults, but you may wish to designate shipping rates by weight if you are shipping heavier items. If you will be shipping from the United States, like our fictional company, ManufacturingXYZ, you can make the change by clicking “Edit” in the Domestic area.
From here you can add weight ranges and assign a shipping cost to each. Any product you add that is within that weight will cost what you denote here.
You can print shipping labels out on your office printer when a purchase it made. Choose the type of printer you have here.
Step 7: Complete other functions in the Settings menu
If you are operating out of the United States you don’t need to make any changes because taxes are already calculated for you.
In this module, you can modify the messages your customers will receive at each step in the purchasing process. Shopify has messages already written in each of these, though, so modify only if you wish.
Also in the module is the option to receive notifications on your desktop when actions occur in your store.
All of the images and other files you upload to Shopify are viewable at a glance here.
The account module contains your account details like your billing information. When you are ready to purchase a plan for your store, you can do it here. The Basic Shopify plan is $29/month at the time of this post and contains most of what you need. We recommend starting with that and increasing the plan if needed later.
You can also add Staff members here if you wish to have another member of your team manage your store.
Step 8: Add a Product
At last, it’s time to add your first product! You were beginning to think it would never happen, right?
To add your first product, click “Products” on the left-hand navigation. With “All Products” selected, click the “Add product” button from the business side of the page.
For the title, add a descriptive title of your product. For our example, we’re going to borrow a product from www.globalindustrial.com. The product will be titled: “Plastic Storage Container – Attached Lid.”
In the Description box, describe your product thoroughly but also use selling language to entice the customer to purchase. For our example, we’ll borrow again from www.globalindustrial.com and the description will be:
Safe, Secure, and Sustainable. The improved all plastic attached lid container leads the industry in design and proven performance. Taken out was the traditional metal hinge –replacing it with a safer and more durable all plastic hinge. This series of plastic shipping containers is the choice of much of the distribution industry. Manufactured from high grade-high density polyethylene plastic, the enhanced storage container is made to ship, store, and distribute goods and products in the toughest of environments. The all new plastic hinge design means there is no metal in the hinge of the container –making this container the safest and most sustainable in the market. Raised lip edges allow secure stacking. The attached lid container saves money too while allowing empty containers to nest inside each other when not in use. Molded grip handles have an integral hasp to accept cable ties for security. The Best Value plastic storage container offers increased safety and durability –all at a great value.
When adding an image, we want to make sure it’s as clear and good looking as possible to help sell it. Therefore, we’re going to again go to the Shopify Help Center and look up what size is recommended.
Higher resolution photos will look more polished and professional to your customers, and we typically suggest 2048px by 2048px as a guideline for square product images.
We upload our images to our image editor to make them the right size before uploading to the store. We’re using Canva.com.
“Price” should be the price of the product. If you want to make the product on sale, fill out the “Compare at price” which should be the price of the product when not on sale.
The SKU (Stock Keeping Unit) can be any number that’s relevant to you. It is for keeping track of inventory. You could enter “1” for your first product.
The Barcode could be the ISBN, UPC, or other code for the product.
For the “Inventory policy” you can select to allow Shopify keep track of the product’s inventory or not. If you select to allow Shopify to track, you will be asked how many of that inventory you have in stock currently. You will have the option to allow customers to purchase the product when out of stock but we don’t recommend this as you could get very backed up and into a bad situation.
Either select the weight based one of the weights you set up earlier or just estimate the weight of the item and let Shopify’s defaults take care of the shipping math.
Choose the option name. You can write in anything you want. Options could be size, color, type, and more.
For every variant you add, a line is added to the list below where the price, SKU, barcode, and inventory can all be filled out accordingly.
Search engine listing preview
The search engine listing preview is an important tool for getting organic traffic to your site. The tool shows how your product will show up in search engine results. To learn SEO strategies for your site, check out this blog post.
To find this section, scroll back up to the top of the page and look to the column at the far right.
To fill out “Product type” use a simple descriptive word or phrase. For our Plastic Storage Container we’ll borrow from Global Industrial again and write: “Containers-Shipping.”
For “Vendor” it will be us, so we’ll write our fictional company name: ManufacturingXYZ.
With “Collection” think about how you might group your product so it is easy to find. For our example, we’ll borrow from Global Industrial again and write: “Premium Attached Lid Distribution Containers.”
Lastly, for “Tags” you’ll aim to write a list of words or phrases that help describe the product to help customers searching through your shop to find what they’re looking for. For our example, we’ll write: Attached lid, storage, container, plastic, shipping, distribution, premium.
Click the blue-purple button in the lower right to “Save product.”
Congratulations! You’ve added your first product.
Step 9: View your online store
Now it a good time to view your online store!
To do so, in the left-hand navigation, click the icon that appears to the right of “Online Store.” The icon is a square with an arrow pointing to the upper right.
What a fine store you’ve built!
Wow! Your store is coming right along…only one more lesson and you’ll be ready to launch! Go here for part 3: Manufacturers’ Guide To Shopify: Finalizing Your Store.
If you’d like discuss your ecommerce opportunity and other proven marketing strategies that will help you to realize your full potential as a manufacturer — please reach out to us using the form below. We look forward to speaking with you!