Creating a Shopify store is very simple. But creating one that is primed for success, not so easy. That’s the reason why some entrepreneurs opt paying for a done-for-you Shopify store.
You are not alone. There are thousands of people who want to start a Shopify store but don’t know where to begin. And even though Shopify has made it easier to create a website – even for non-experienced web builders – the process might still be too difficult and very time-consuming to some.
This is the reason why pre-built ecommerce services are chosen by a lot of online entrepreneurs. These services eliminate the need for a time-consuming and headache-inducing process. Instead, they enable you to jump right into selling without going through the bloody process of creating a website.
In this article, we will talk about everything you need to learn about done-for-you ecommerce stores. So, keep reading.
If you are new to the ecommerce space, you might have already heard of Shopify and Amazon FBA. But the term “done-for-you ecommerce store” is not usually part of the conversation. It is used interchangeably with the term “pre-built ecommerce store”.
As the name implies, a DFY online store is a selling platform that is pre-built so that the buyer can just “turn the key” and start selling. That’s why they also call them “turnkey websites”.
There are several kinds of done-for-you online stores:
- An existing online store that already has products and has generated sales in the past. You’ll find brands like these on Empire Flippers.
- Dropshipping stores are prebuilt by product suppliers so that website buyers can readily use them in their dropshipping business.
- An ecommerce store built from the ground up according to the buyer’s demands, preferences, and business model.
In this article, we will solely focus on ecommerce stores built from the ground up.
- When Do You Need A Pre-Built Ecommerce Store?
- Create An Ecommerce Store But You Have No Experience
- Avoid Costly Mistakes
- Launch A Branded Website From The Get Go
- Avoid Wasting Time
- Eliminate The Need For In-House Web Developers
- Drawbacks of a DFY Ecommerce Store
- Originality Could Be An Issue
- Is It A Proven Idea?
- Branding Could Be A Hit-Or-Miss
- Missing Knowledge Foundation
- Limited To The Services Offered By The Seller
- 5 Tips to Find The Right DFY Ecommerce Store Designer
- Where to Find Done-For-You Ecommerce Stores?
- Examples of DFY E-Commerce Stores
- Should You Buy A DFY E-Commerce Store Or Should You Just Create One?
When Do You Need A Pre-Built Ecommerce Store?
A ready-made online store can be useful to you for a number of practical reasons. A store like this would be best for you if you to:
01. Create An Ecommerce Store But You Have No Experience
As a business owner, you want to launch as soon as possible. However, juggling retail sales and technical stuff are two entirely different things. If you have no experience with the latter, things may be very difficult for you to start.
With a pre-built Shopify store, you let expert web builders do all the creation and store optimization needed. When it is done, your business will be ready to launch.
02. Avoid Costly Mistakes
It happens to the best of us. Making mistakes when making your own ecommerce store is very possible when you are doing it for the first time.
Shopify offers free and paid themes that you can use for your online business. In the event that you purchased a template, and weeks into designing it, you have figured out that the functions it offers are not the best match for the functionality that you need, you would have no choice but to start over.
A mistake like this is a difficult pill to swallow especially when you have dedicated weeks to building the ecom store. That means spending money on a new template. Not to mention the time you already spent.
03. Launch A Branded Website From The Get Go
Creating an online store is a little difficult on its own. Implementing branding ideas in your online business adds another level of difficulty.
Branding is a team effort that requires research, design, and several hours of getting inspired by other ecommerce brands. You can launch dropshipping businesses or Shopify stores without the need for branding. But it will not be beneficial for you in the long haul.
If you are in it to win it, branding should be on top of your mind when launching a website.
Paying DFY Shopify services helps you execute your branding idea. That is, if you are partnered with the right people. More on this later.
04. Avoid Wasting Time
Do you plan to launch your dropshipping store? You must act fast because in the dropshipping business, you should ride the hype of a product before it is gone. Thus, if you have no web design experience, paying for a pre-built dropshipping store might be the best choice for you if you want to start right away.
05. Eliminate The Need For In-House Web Developers
Creating a Shopify store can be as easy as creating a Facebook page if you want simple functions such as Home, Product, Collection, and About page.
However, store optimization and integrating third-party apps might require a bit more knowledge and experience that you might not currently have. If that is the situation, hiring a web developer (in-house or contractual) could be your best option. But doing so could be pricey
Hiring a web developer minimizes the probability of encountering potential problems when your ecom store is up and running. In the same way, hiring DFY ecommerce services lessens this possibility because they are experienced in launching online stores.
Drawbacks of a DFY Ecommerce Store
A DFY Shopify website comes with a generous amount of benefits. However, as with everything good, it also comes with a number of drawbacks.
Here are some of them:
01. Originality Could Be An Issue
There are great, highly professional web designers out there. But if you stumbled upon a designer with questionable credibility, you might lose a lot more than you can gain. Some unscrupulous web designers build a template that they simply copy and paste into the websites that they create.
In such a case, originality will be an issue. And as a person who paid the full price, will it be okay for you to know that there exists another ecommerce website out there with a similar design language to yours?
02. Is It A Proven Idea?
As mentioned above, there exist some prebuilt online stores that are already generating retail sales. Now that they are up for sale, will it be a good idea to buy them? Could be or could be not.
That depends on the niche that they are in. You might have to ask why the current owner is selling the website if it still generates profit. It could be that the niche is growing competitively and they want to make an exit by selling the business.
In cases of turnkey websites with pre-loaded products, the question should be, “is it a proven idea?”. Thus, you should do your research to avoid running into a potentially “lemon” business idea.
03. Branding Could Be A Hit-Or-Miss
Paying for a DFY online store based on a template, branding could be a hit-or-miss.
Remember, branding is what sticks to your potential customers’ minds after they leave your store. If you want to have great first impressions, you have to nail your branding right off the bat.
Besides, rebranding can be hard and costly. In most cases, large businesses do this to adapt to changing times. Not to correct a branding error done in the beginning.
04. Missing Knowledge Foundation
Whether you like it or not, you must have a foundational knowledge of how your Shopify website works. Even if you bought one that is pre-built. This gives you the confidence to keep moving forward in your business without heavily relying on external hires to fix problems for you as they come.
Solid foundational knowledge will benefit you in the long run because it gives you the opportunity to save money if finances are tight or if you need to downsize without the risk of impairing your operations.
05. Limited To The Services Offered By The Seller
Done-for-you ecommerce stores are offered by companies or freelancers who are trying to earn from every website that they sell. In most cases, these web developers offer different pricing tiers.
If you don’t have enough budget, you might be forced to choose low-tier services with limited offers. You get locked in by what you can only afford and you will have to pay extra for additional services.
5 Tips to Find The Right DFY Ecommerce Store Designer
To avoid the dreadful experience of dealing with a sham ecommerce website builder, here are five (5) tips that will help you find the right man for the job.
01. Check The Website
A simple Google search of the term “done for you Shopify '' will give you enough results to find a good website builder. Take your time in doing your research. Click and explore the websites one by one to see how they do their business.
02. Look At Their Portfolio
Next, look at their portfolio. Visit the websites that they previously created and have a feel of the experience. Browse the entire websites and see how they execute different types of pages like home, about, and contact us.
Furthermore, read the copywriting on the websites. Do they write a good product description? It is worth noting that online stores are not just all about products and images. Nicely written copies will help you attract customers to buy your products.
03. Do They Specialize In DFY Ecommerce?
You have to make sure that the website builder that you choose has substantial experience in creating ecommerce websites.
That is because ecommerce websites require a different approach compared to ordinary landing pages and blog sites. You want to maximize what these websites have to offer.
Here are three (3) websites that has substantial experience on creating DFY ecommerce stores:
04. What Services Are Included?
As a buyer, you want to get the most out of your purchase. Therefore, it is important for you to find an ecommerce builder that is willing to help you out even after they turned over the store to you.
This is especially important if problems arise in the future. You need someone to help you solve these problems right away if you do not know how to solve them yourself. In a situation like this, 24/7 live chat support will be beneficial for you.
Additionally, websites need constant maintenance and monitoring. And if you want to implement changes in the future, they must be willing to do the job for you.
05. Talk To Them
Lastly, talk to your chosen seller to see if their approach matches your ideas. This will be your opportunity to ask everything that you need to make a decision. So, don’t skip this part.
Make sure that you talk to a real person and not a bot. This will give you an idea of how responsive their customer service is. You want to make sure that when problems arise, you won’t be left on your own devices to deal with a chatbot.
Talk about their team. Do they have UX and UI designers that will help create an appealing website for customers?
This is also the best time for you to discuss your budget and what they can offer within your capacity. If you want a website soon, make sure that their time frame can meet your set deadlines.
Where to Find Done-For-You Ecommerce Stores?
If you are convinced that a DFY online store is the best solution to your ecommerce needs, there are a lot of places you can look into to find the best fit.
Different service providers mean different pricing models.
Here are some of them:
When looking for a creator, the first thing that you can do is ask for referrals from people you know who have already tried a specific creator. That way, you get honest feedback, the good and the bad, from a person who has first-hand experience of the service.
You can also ask for referrals from the owner of a Shopify website that you liked. You can reach website owners through the contact page on their websites. In doing so, be upfront with your intention of asking about where they had their website designed.
Sometimes, you will find the best creator not in the form of a large website employing hundreds of people. Instead, as a digital marketing professional working as freelance web designer.
Freelancing websites like Fiverr and Upwork gives you access to thousands of digital marketing professionals whose specializations range from content marketing, PPC ads, SEO – and yes, web design. In exchange for that convenience, these platforms charge the employer (you) a few extra dollars for the work done.
These professionals hugely vary in terms of their pricing. You can have a done-for-you ecommerce store for less than $100 to over $1000. This gives you a lot of options to choose from that will suit your demands.
Of course, not all freelancers are the same. So, be diligent in choosing a designer to avoid headaches along the way.
You can also find digital marketing companies and professionals on LinkedIn. If you found someone on LinkedIn, you can directly hire them without paying fees, unlike freelancing websites.
LinkedIn is a platform for career-oriented professionals who want to get known in their space of expertise. Thus, you are guaranteed to find a web designer here who can create your Shopify store.
Finally, you can find just about anything on Google. Make a simple search and your wish is Google’s command.
There is one drawback here though, the search results depend on your location. Thus, if you live in the US, you are most likely to find US-based results.
Examples of DFY E-Commerce Stores
01. Coton Frais
Coton Frais is an apparel company based in Marco Island. Their collection extends to chic items for babies, hats, and jewelry. The website is well-curated, everything is in the right place, and the website is very lightweight. Every page loads up in less than half a second. Overall, it provides a very seamless experience.
Their website is created from scratch by Dotcom Engine
Price: $490 to $790 (one-time investment)
Splashes and Spills is a makeup company that specializes in products perfect for artists who use the human skin as an art canvas. They offer glitter makeup, neons, and products that are used for special effects on the skin. The website itself is nothing short of impeccable. They combined the right tone of pink and black to create that easy-to-look feel – and they succeeded at that.
This is a perfect example of why partnering with a creative agency pays huge dividends for a company’s brand identity.
This website is designed by Ovio Creative
Price: Upon inquiry
If you have cash sitting around and waiting for a good investment opportunity, buying an existing online business can be an attractive option for you. Casewale sells phone cases for brands like Apple, Samsung, and OnePlus. On top of phone cases, it also offers Apple watch straps, chargers, and other phone accessories.
This website is for sale for a hefty price of $350,000. Despite being expensive, the listing says that it generates $50,000 in monthly profit. That means that you can get your money back in just less than a year.
You can find ecommerce brands like this on Flippa.
Price: $350,000 for the entire website.
*Disclaimer: This is not business advice and should not be treated as such.
04. All About Greens
All About Greens is a UK-based online business selling kitchen utensils, cookware, apparels, and more. Additionally, they offer digital courses on cooking. The website is well put together and it has instantaneous load speed providing a friction-less experience.
This website was created by an Upwork freelancer named Franziska. She is a Shopify expert and professional web designer.
Price: $75 per hour.
05. Amazin’ Aces
Amazin’ Aces is an ecommerce business selling pickleball paddles. But not just a plain old boring black paddle. They sell colorful paddles with graphic designs in them. The ecommerce store is nicely done and is very easy to navigate. It focuses less on the buttons and more on the visual designs. Overall, the website doesn’t disappoint.
This Shopify store was created by a Fiverr freelancer named George. He is a Fiverr Pro Verified in E-commerce development, website development, and website maintenance.
Price: $945 to $1,545
Should You Buy A DFY E-Commerce Store Or Should You Just Create One?
A ready made Shopify store has a lot of benefits and it also has its drawbacks. However, the things that make it very compelling to buy a pre-built website is that it offers convenience and certainty.
The truth is, you can’t go wrong with a DFY ecommerce store if you choose the right partner.
So, if you are asking if you should buy a prebuilt online store instead of creating one yourself – the answer boils down to your willingness to pay a premium to the cost attached to it.
Because the cost of these services can be substantial, it is very crucial to find the best partner in building your ecommerce site. Always choose a website or professional who has great reviews and years of experience.
At the end of the day, whether you buy one or create it yourself, you still have to get acquainted with the functionalities of your online store.