Affiliate Marketing: The 12 Best Shopify Apps For Dropshipping Ecommerce Stores
Getting your store set up is the easy part.
Converting visitors into buyers is where you need to spend your time.
The #1 secret to making money in ecommerce is the Shopify apps that your store uses.
The right apps are the difference between -100% ROI and being able to leave your job.
A Quick Overview of E-Commerce Using Shopify/Facebook
Everyone has heard of ecommerce, but how does it work?
I wrote a post on it last week, but here’s the 80/20.
- You sign up with Shopify
- Build a store (no coding needed. //Hey, it’s easy to not code when you can’t code)
- Drive traffic to it through Facebook ads
The idea is that you are collecting orders through Shopify, then each day the orders get sent to a drop shipper somewhere in China who ships the products out for you.
It’s not that hard to set up a Shopify store and run some Facebook ads.
If you can do CPA marketing with tracking, servers, postbacks, software etc. then ecommerce will be a breeze.
The HARD part is getting people to convert when they land on your store.
The secret is to use the right combination of apps.
I’ll do some content in the future on what products to sell, how to do the Facebook side etc. But right now I wanna show you some of the best Shopify apps to use in your store.
If you want a more detailed guide check out my intro to Shopify ecommerce post.
The Best Shopify Apps for Ecommerce Campaigns
Over the past year I’ve run a lot of split tests on my Shopify stores.
There are a ton of things to test – products, brands, themes, copy etc.
Once you find a product that works well, the biggest driver of your profitability is your apps.
You can do everything with Shopify apps:
- Track and automate all of your shipping
- Upsell and cross-sell products
- Automate your transactional process (confirmations, receipts, customer service)
- Use urgency, scarcity, and other sales/psychology principles
I want to share my list of Shopify apps I use in most of my stores to help boost your ROI.
The Shopify Platform
Cost: Free trial, then plans from $29 per month
Discount: Shopify does offer discounts, but they don’t do them in public. If you wanna grab 10% off for your first year + extend the free trial, here’s the link for the discount.
Description: Shopify is the platform we use to build our store on – kinda like you’d use WordPress if you want to start blogging. Shopify is purpose-built for selling physical products, so it’s easy to make up new listings, use templates for design etc.
You don’t need to know any coding to build your store, unless you want something super custom. There are hundreds of Shopify programmers on Fiverr if you need ‘em.
Wanna Sign up for Shopify? Get a Discount Here
One of the Shopify reps got in touch with me at AWA and said he wants to offer you guys an insider deal.
(Shout out to Adam from Shopify, thanks bro!)
The deal is:
- Extended free trial (21 days free)
- 10% off for your first year
The catch is they told us not to make the coupon code public.
App #1: MailChimp
Cost: $0.00 up to 2,000 contact list size
Description: Affiliates should be building email lists. This hooks up your Shopify store to your MailChimp account so you can collect everybody’s emails. It’s free up to email lists of 2,000, and then prices vary.
This gets super powerful when you look at the backend and see what you can do. You can segment your list based on their country, what they bought, when they last purchased etc.
Below is a screenshot of what the email dashboard looks like.
App #2: Better Shipping
Description: This app sets shipping based on zip/postal code & per product… But I use it for maxing out profits by charging different rates for shipping different products as well.
Shipping can kill you if you don’t charge the right rates. The margins are slimmer in ecommerce, so you have to watch out for things can caw screw your business.
Another thing I use this app for is offering free shipping if people order over $xx spend. I know the free shipping pushes a lot more people to purchase.
You can see in the screenshots how easy this app is to set rates for specific products/areas.
App #3: Abandonment Protector
Cost: $8.00 (free trial available)
Description: Sometimes a person will be on your site adding items to their cart, and they exit. There are hundreds of reasons why, but this app retrieves people who abandon the cart and reminds them via email.
You can send multiple emails encouraging them to continue with the purchase.
This is kinda like retargeting, but just on select customers who were super close to buying.
These are super hot leads.
Abandonment Protector also lets you send these emails at time intervals you set, so you can use the stats about email click-throughs to see which intervals/times work best.
App #4: Retarget App
Cost: Custom (10% of campaign spend)
Description: Whenever someone clicks on your Facebook ad, but doesn’t buy, this app will retarget them. The backend of this app is super technical – it does all of the retargeting automatically.
It dynamically creates the Facebook ad, inserts the product that they were viewing. You just have to write the ad text. You can set a budget that you’re comfortable and let it go.
I was skeptical about this app at first.
10% of campaign spend is a lot of money to pay to an app owner, but I’ve made a lot of money from this app. Just test it out and see if it works for your campaign.
App #5: Pixel Perfect
Description: If you’re not a tech guy, this app is a life saver. It installs the Facebook pixel for every single event without any coding. For example, if someone clicks through to your site and views a certain category, the Facebook pixel will collect all of that data.
It records these events: PageView, ViewContent, ViewCategory, ViewNiche, AddToCart, InitiateCheckout and Purchase Events.
You can see how powerful this is when you gather this much data about your customers into the pixel.
If you’ve used the Facebook pixel before, you know how much of a time saver this app is.
Here’s a screenshot of the events that it logs, and when it fires the pixel on purchase.
App #6: Recommendify
Description: This plugin can make you a lot of extra cash. It cross sells products to drive more revenue per customer.
Here’s an example: If you’re selling men’s sunglasses, someone visiting your site might also be interested in hats, wallets, watches, sunglass cases etc. This app lets you promote any other items you choose.
Here’s a screenshot that shows how it works:
Amazon gets 35% of their sales from cross-sells. Take inspiration from them and use this app in your store.
App #7: Conversio
Description: This app lets you upsell and cross-sell extra products when you email your receipt to customer. The customer is still in a buying frame, so you can see how powerful it is to suggest other products on the receipt.
This app used to be called Receiptful (when it just offered the receipt upsell feature), but now they have a ton of extra features like:
- Feedback system for customers – this is a gold mine for you to help improve your store
- Product review functionality
- Can use it to send newsletters to customers
- Send coupons to customers (this is super powerful for getting repeat customers)
Here’s a screenshot of an example coupon you can send out.
App #8: Hot Jar
Description: I use this app to create heat maps and recordings of visitors to know where sticking points are. I only use this occasionally, so if you’re just starting out it’s not really necessary. It’s good if you’re getting a ton of traffic and you want to optimize at the margins.
App #9: Fomo
Description: Fomo is a very powerful app. It creates social proof and urgency by showing how many products other customers are buying. It displays orders in real time with a small popup.
Here’s a screenshot to give you a better idea of how it looks:
Imagine if you’re shopping in this store. You see someone in your country buying a similar product to the one you’re looking at.
- It reassures you that the store is legit and other shoppers are buying things (social proof)
- You feel a sense of urgency because you can see how many items are left in stock
App #10: Persistent Cart
Description: On a Shopify store, some people add items to their cart, but then leave. You have the Abandonment Protector app to send them follow-up emails, but then any items in the cart disappear.
This is a problem because the customer might not be able to find the product, or they might forget what it was.
Persistent Cart keeps the same items in their shopping cart no matter what device they log in from. It’s cheap, and it pays for itself fast.
App #11: AfterShip
Cost: $0.00 – variable
Description: This app takes care of all shipping/tracking. Shipping is one of the factors that keep a lot of Shopify stores from becoming a big hit.
Here’s what this app does:
- Keeps all tracking of your goods in one place
- Allows your customers to view a page that tells them the status of shipping (this reduces customer service email)
- Sends delivery updates to customers (this also reduces a lot of customer service problems)
This app solves a lot of the problems that come up in stores selling physical products.
You can see how easy it is to set up automated emails, view the stats on your shipping, and keep customers happy with the custom pages.
App #12: In Cart Upsell
Description: This app kinda works the same was as an Amazon cart. When the visitor goes to the checkout, this app offers them a related product.
But the real benefit of this app is that it’s not a hard sell. When someone is trying to buy on your store, you don’t wanna annoy them too much. This is one of the best Shopify apps for upselling that actually helps the end user.
It’s a gentle upsell, and it works really well when you do it on products that someone would really want to buy.
The screenshot below is a great example: a belt as an upsell when they are buying pants.
There are a few extra apps that I’ve found to be helpful, but they aren’t super necessary. Think of them as “extra for experts”.
Some of you guys might be coming from a search/PPC background and you don’t want to have to learn a whole new traffic source. There are plenty of guys out there doing ecom on search, so this plugin can help you there.
Free Shipping Bar
It’s good to test different shipping methods. Free shipping, flat rate shipping, $1.00 shipping, shipping based on GEO, whatever. But free shipping is always gonna help people make a fast decision. You don’t need to use this specific app, you can do it manually in your store. This app just helps “gamify” the process.
Cost: Variable (28-day free trial)
Link: Recart Shopify App
Always Be Testing – The Same Rules Apply Here
Ecommerce is an area I see a lot of growth in for 2017.
The one major advantage we have as affiliate marketers is that we have a different mindset.
I’ve found that the majority of Shopify store owners don’t understand split testing, targeting, optimizing, tracking etc.
They don’t even think to do that sorta stuff.
Most Shopify store owners will set up a store, and then run traffic to it. They are happy with tiny profit margins because it’s just a hobby for them, or it’s an extension of their physical store.
As affiliates, we know that you have to test, test test.
I’ve absolutely dominated ecommerce because I come in with the affiliate mindset.
I see a problem, and I test out 5 solutions.
3 of them don’t work, 1 breaks even, and one takes off.
Then I move on to the next split test.
After 5 split tests I’m light years ahead of the average Shopify store owner.
The same rules apply in all areas of online business – ecommerce is no exception.
If you like this post, then share/comment so I know if I should do more ecommerce stuff!