Everybody seems to push you to start a Shopify store in order to make money online making it look too easy to be true.
But the question is: how much money does it cost to start a Shopify store, and most important, to run it until it becomes successful and profitable?
Many claim that you can start with Shopify for free and start making money right away!
Is that true? Can you start making money for free with Shopify?
That’s why I wrote this short article where I give you, from my experience with Shopify stores, a breakdown of the costs to keep in mind when getting started with an online store on Shopify.
How Much Does it Cost to Start a Shopify Store?
The cost of starting a Shopify store ranges from $15 to $2,500 depending on who builds the store, the products you sell, and the marketing strategy you follow.
And one factor of those three might affect the cost of the other, as in the following breakdown, where you will understand how much you need based on your situation when setting up your Shopify store.
Shopify Store Setup Cost Breakdown
1 – Cost to Build The Shopify Store ($15-$500)
When building a Shopify store, you need to pay:
- One payment of $15 for the domain name for a complete year.
- $29/Month for hosting your store with the Basic Shopify plan.
There’s a 14-day free trial, which means that you only pay the $15 for the domain at the start.
- Cost for the setup process itself: $0 If you do it by yourself with Shopify Compass courses.
Or, $100-$300 for someone else to do it.
- Logo: $0 If you do it by yourself with free tools like Canva or Hatchful.
Or, $10-$50 for someone else to do it.
- Cost for the Shopify theme: $0 to start with a free Shopify theme.
Or, $180-$450 for a premium Shopify theme from Out of the Sandbox.
Best strategy: Start by creating the Shopify store by yourself, use a free logo maker, and a free theme.
Minimum cost $102 – ($15 for the domain for a full year, and $29/month for Shopify for the first three months until becoming profitable).
2 – Cost to Add Products ($100-$1,000)
In order to add products to your store, you can either add products of your own that you sell, which requires you to have inventory in advance, or you can add products from dropshipping suppliers and buy them only after receiving orders on your store.
- Cost for adding dropshipping products from AliExpress with Oberlo app: $0.
- Cost for adding print on demand products with Printful or Printify apps: $0.
But you might need to fulfill orders from your money once you receive them before getting money from PayPal or credit card processors, therefore, you need around $100-$300 in advance.
- Cost for adding your own products: The cost of the stock & warehousing: $300-$1,000, depending on what you sell and where you store it.
Best strategy: If you sell your own products, make sure that you have some inventory in advance in order to ship quickly. If you don’t have your own product, you can choose dropshipping or print on demand (Best if you already have a passionate audience in a certain niche).
Minimum cost: Minimum of $100 if you do dropshipping or POD. Minimum of $300 if you are selling your own product.
3 – Cost to Do Marketing ($0-$1,000)
The cost to market your Shopify store depends on the traffic source you want to use in order to market your Shopify store, which could be:
- $0 If you start with the free traffic methods for Shopify stores that take sometime to get some traffic to your store (This will mean that you will need to spend on the Shopify $29/month plan until you start getting sales, typically 3 months).
- $100-$200 To start with paid search ads from Google & Bing, before becoming profitable and start spending on ads by re-investing from your margins.
- $100 To start with influencer marketing using Instagram.
- $500-$1,000 To start with Facebook, which is faster to test and scale, but requires more experience and patience.
- $200-$1,000 To start with other paid traffic methods for Shopify stores such as Twitter ads, Pinterest ads, Snapchat ads, …etc.
Best strategy: If you have the money and want faster results, start with Facebook ads or Google Ads, and if you don’t have the money, then start with one of the free Shopify traffic methods.
Minimum cost: $100-$500 for paid traffic methods, and $0 for the free traffic methods.
Conclusion – How Much Do You Really Need for a Shopify Store?
The money you need for a Shopify store depends on your time, business model and marketing strategy.
- If you were starting without experience and on budget:
Realistically, you better learn how to start a Shopify store by yourself with one of the free courses and tutorials, and pay $15 for the domain for the first year.
Keep with you the Shopify fees for three months (3X$29=$87) until you become profitable.
Start with dropshipping or print on demand where you only pay for the product after you get the order, so that you don’t buy inventory in advance, but keep with you at least $100 to fulfill the first few orders.
Total minimum cost of setting up a Shopify store for a beginner is $202.
- If you were starting with or without experience, and have some money, but not a lot:
You need $15 for the domain name for the first year.
You need the Basic Shopify fees for three months (3X$29=$87) until becoming profitable.
You need at least $100 to spend on influencers or search ads.
You need another $100 to fulfill the first few orders.
Total minimum cost of opening a Shopify store for someone with some money is $302.
- If you were starting with good money:
You need $15 to pay for the domain name for the first year.
You need to pay for the Basic Shopify for three months (3X$29=$87) until becoming profitable.
You need at least $500 to spend on Facebook ads.
You need another $100 to fulfill the first few orders.
Total minimum cost of opening a Shopify store for someone with good money is $702.
So, that was the breakdown and the summary of how much money you need in order to start a Shopify store if you were to be realistic, based on your experience, business model, marketing strategy, and budget.
Starting a Shopify online store doesn’t mean only building the store, as that can be done with $15 for the domain name and the free 14-day Shopify trial.
But you need to run the store and start generating revenue, and for that, you need to spend some time and money in order to make your first sale, and then become profitable.
Starting with only $15 for the domain name and thinking that you don’t need more money will only put you in a confusing and stressful situation after you start receiving orders without having money in hand in order to fulfill them.
If you are still confused and need any help, or if I haven’t covered your case in the breakdown above, then tell me more about you in the comments’ section below, and I will do my best to give you an estimate on how much money you need to have before starting with Shopify 🙂