15 Low-Cost Shopify Tools for E-commerce Entrepreneurs

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Shopify tools to help you grow your online store.

COVID-19 has driven a massive growth in E-commerce spending.

To put it in perspective, consumers spent more online in April and May of 2020 than they did during the entire holiday season last year.

“According to our data, it would’ve taken between 4 and 6 years to get to the levels that we saw in May if the growth continued at the same levels it was at for the past few years,”

Vivek Pandya, Adobe Digital Insights Manager, as quoted by Forbes.

The numbers won’t stay that high forever, but experts are predicting that at least some of our new shopping habits will persist well beyond the current pandemic.

“Our research indicates that new habits formed now will endure beyond this crisis, permanently changing what we value, how and where we shop, and how we live and work.”

Oliver Writer and Emma Blackburn, writing for Accenture

If your Shopify site has seen a spike in sales and you want to keep the momentum going, these tools can help.

1. Groove (Help desk and knowledge base)

Is your email overflowing with customer questions and return requests?

We’re not ashamed to say it. We think Groove is an ideal choice for E-commerce entrepreneurs.

Groove’s Inbox will replace your email as the place you go to communicate with customers—and we make it easy with a direct integration with Shopify.

Using it feels a lot like using Gmail or another email service—which is exactly the point. We want it to be easy for anyone to start using.

Our Shopify integration lets you see exactly who you’re talking to and how much they’ve spent with you over time.

Even if you’re not that tech savvy, you can set up Groove and get started with it in less than 15 minutes.

In addition, Groove’s knowledge base software (which is included for free with all accounts) is a secret weapon for many Shopify owners.

It gives customers a way to answer questions on their own—without them having to email you for help.

Note: You can try Groove free for 120-days, no credit card required.

2. Image Resizer

Ever land on a product page and there’s just one grainy image of the product—one that doesn’t inspire much confidence that you’re going to get what you want if you order?

Contrast that to a product page with multiple high-quality images of the product you’re considering.

Shopify Online Image Resizer tool will help you get those images right, and it’s free! You can even resize a set of images all at once to help you speed up the process.

3. Hatchful

Need a logo for your store but don’t have a huge budget?

Hatchful might be just the option for you.

If you’re tight on cash, you can use one of the free options created by its logo generator. Here’s what I got when I entered a generic “My Online Store” into the tool:

If you have some money to spend, you can choose a premium option for something a little more unique.

You can find Hatchful on the web or in the Apple App Store.

4. SKU Generator by Katana

If you have more than a handful of products, you’ll need some kind of system to organize your SKUs.

The Free SKU Generator by Katana is a simple, free tool that can save you major headaches down the road.

The tool lets you enter different variations of your product name, then systematically creates SKU codes for each one to keep everything organized.

5. Burst

Need a stock image to add to a menu page or to your homepage?

You can browse Burst from within Shopify, or you can choose an image directly from the Burst website.

In either place, you’ll find a wide variety of royalty-free stock images you can use to add color, life, and energy to your site.

Bonus tools: Not finding an image you like on Burst? Try Unsplash or Pixabay for additional options.

6. Exchange Marketplace

Looking to buy an existing Shopify store instead of building a new one from scratch? Or wondering what you could get if you sold your store to someone else?

Shopify’s Exchange Marketplace is just the place.

Prices to acquire a Shopify store range from a few hundred dollars all the way to seven-figures or more.

7.  Smile.io

Smile.io is one of the most popular loyalty solutions on the market for Shopify e-commerce stores.

Issue reward points when customers create an account, share a product on social media, follow your brand, or make a purchase.

Smile.io has a free plan for new users plus the option to upgrade for additional features.

8. Slogan Maker

Confession: I spent entirely too much time experimenting with slogan ideas after stumbling across Slogan Maker, a free web application from Shopify.

If you need a good slogan for your e-commerce store, the tool provides a surprisingly robust number of options.

Just enter a few keywords and see what it suggests:

9. Shopify Themes

Want a different look for your Shopify store? Shopify Themes is the place.

If you’ve never set up a Shopify site before, the marketplace provides hundreds of options for the look and feel of your website.

Once you’ve chosen a theme, you can test it out on your store, adjust the content, colors, fonts, and a wide variety of other design options.

10. PayWhril 

PayWhirl adds a simple widget to your e-commerce store that allows customers to set up payment plans for your products.

Once a customer chooses a payment plan, PayWhirl’s cart tool will automatically send invoices and payment information so your customers can track their progress.

PayWhirl is great if you have international customers as well. It supports all major credit cards and transactions in over 100 international currencies.

11. Free CPM Calculator

Is paid advertising a part of your strategy?

Shopify’s free CMP Calculator lets you run the numbers to see if your campaigns are worth the cost.

Just enter your variables in the calculator and Shopify calculates the rest.

12. WishList Plus

Wish lists are great for consumers, giving them an easy way to save products they’re interested in or share them with friends.

WishList Plus makes this process easy for both your customers and for you.

Users can create lists right on your site from a WishList module that’s added to your website. If a customer switches devices, their activity syncs so they can pick up where they left off.

13. Recart

Fact: The average open rate for email is somewhere around 15%.

Also a fact: The average open rate for Facebook Messenger is over 70%.

Recart gives you access to your customers in a whole new way by pushing messages to them in Messenger.

Share promotions, weekly specials, or updates about recent purchases.

And do so in a channel with engagement rates you could only dream of with email.

14. Facebook and Instagram Autopost

If you have a following on either Facebook or Instagram, one of the easiest things you can do is post new products when they become available.

To engage people who follow your store, Facebook and Instagram Auto Post lets you automatically post new product listings to either platform.

It’s simple to use and once you set it up runs automatically to let followers know when you have something new.

15. ReferralCandy

Wish customers would recommend you to more of their friends, family, or coworkers?

ReferralCandy gives them a nudge to do just that—giving you the power to offer rewards, coupon codes, gifts or other incentives for referring you to their network.

It’s easy to customize and doesn’t require coding skills.

Conclusion: E-commerce tools for growing small businesses

Wherever you are on your entrepreneurial journey, the tools above should help you do more with your Shopify store.

As you grow, we invite you to try our product.

It’s the simplest way we know to better support your customers—and tame an overflowing inbox.

You can give it a try here—free for 120 days.

COVID-19

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Nathan Collier
Nathan Collier Nathan is a senior editor at Groove. He’s a former journalist who’s one part storyteller and one part data geek. His talents include writing, data analysis, automation, and the telling of really awful dad jokes.