How Shopify Apps Work

If you’re a Shopify newbie, you’ve probably noticed there are many apps you can add to your Shopify store. In this article, we’ll show you how Shopify Apps work, and how to use them to improve your online store. Read on for everything you need to know about Shopify Apps!

How Shopify Apps Work…

Shopify apps are basically third party websites that can access your store data once you give them permission. These permissions are given when you install one of these apps – there are a lot out there for you to try, and the way how Shopify Apps work gives you full control over the information you share according to the apps you pick.

What happens when you install a Shopify App?

The moment you install a Shopify App, you are in reality giving permission to that app so that it can access your store through Shopify’s API. You can uninstall the app at any time, which will revoke the permissions and make it so the app has no longer access to your store. This brings us to our next question…

What are APIs?

In layman’s terms, an API allows two different applications to communicate with one another. The way how Shopify Apps work is that these third-party apps are able to ‘talk’ to your Shopify store.

There are many apps so it’s hard to trust that all of them will be good for you, so picking the right Shopify Apps for you is essential for your store to continue working correctly and for your data to be secure.

How can you pick a Shopify App?

There are two main things you should take a look at before you install any third-party app on your Shopify store.

The first one is user reviews. This would seem to be pretty straight forward – if you’re looking at an app that has dozens of good reviews and other users are saying it worked just right for them, then you can probably use that app without any issues. If an app has mostly negative reviews, you might want to refrain from using it, even if it’s free. The fact that an app is free should not be of any difference to how an app works.

The second main factor comes afterwards, on the install page itself. When you try to install a Shopify app, you will see at a glance all the information that this app will have access to. It can update products or read customer information, among many other options. If all the information that the app requests access to seems reasonable for you, go for it. If it seems like the app is asking for too much information or sensitive information for you or your customers, then you shouldn’t install it. Usually, you can trust the best-rated apps to just ask for access to what’s strictly necessary – but sometimes you might run into an app which seems good but that could represent a risk to the safety of your customers’ information and data.

How does a Shopify App interface work?

The way a Shopify App looks like and how it interacts with your data will depend strictly on the app. Some apps appear within the Shopify app themselves, at the admin area; while some will mostly redirect you to the app’s website (because Shopify apps are essentially third-party websites). These two types of Shopify Apps can be quite different even while doing the same thing, but we recommend using apps that work within the admin area of your Shopify store since they are more convenient to use and integrate better with your store. These apps that have full integration seem to perform better on average than the ones that force you to go to a third party website to use them.

Will a Shopify app have a negative effect on my store?

The goal of any app developer is that people use their app. If people notice that something is going amiss because of it, people will stop using it and leave bad reviews. So, while issues can always happen, usually most developers do the best they can so that an app will be of help to your store and not collect some data it shouldn’t or mess up your store organisation. The goal of an app developer is to get more revenue, and that only happens if he is able to get good reviews; so you shouldn’t be worried about diving in into the world of Shopify apps if you pay attention to the reviews and the data access required.

Although, you should be careful with apps that are not in the Shopify App store since those have not been through the review of Shopify and they might not be as safe for use. Proceed with caution with those.

What are some essential Shopify apps for my new business?

If you’re just starting with Shopify, you definitely should try apps like Boost Sales, which offers both up-sales and cross-sales on the same app. There is also KIT, which recommends the best marketing activities to give that boost you need for your business according to your sales activity. You can also get something like Personalised Recommendation, which offers similar products to the ones your customers are purchasing (a feature that can be seen on Amazon and eBay both and that is highly conducive to impulse sales). Another example of a good app for beginners is Smile.io, which helps you create a reward program with loyalty points. If your brand has a good Instagram presence, you might consider getting Instagram Shop, which turns your Instagram page into a shop and makes your Instagram feed shoppable.

Conclusion

With everything that might improve your business, there comes a small risk. However, you shouldn’t feel afraid to try new Shopify Apps on your online store, especially if they are coming from the Shopify App Store. All you’ve got to do is browse the store, pick something that seems interesting for your business, click on “Add App” and click to accept admin access. Seems simple, right? Because it is. The way how Shopify Apps work is easy and they are meant to be used by anybody. Boost your sales and start selling more today with Shopify Apps!

 

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Top 12 Best CMS Platforms (2019/2020)

A CMS platform gives you tools to manage the content on your website, its appearance, and many other things you might need to keep your website up to date. But which are the better CMS platforms out there for different needs in website design and web development? In this article, we’ll go through the highlights of those we consider to be the top twelve CMS platforms for 2019 and the upcoming year. We’ll advise you on which is better for you depending on the web development skills of those who’ll be using it, your website’s goals, and many other circumstances that might at play during your web development process. So, on to the list!

WordPress.org

Did you know that one-third of all websites around are built on WordPress? If not, you’ll figure out why in a minute. WordPress.org started out to be a blogging platform, but these days it has grown into a full-blown CMS useful for any kind of project. We usually use Magento to integrate larger e-commerce solutions, these tend to be stores with over 2,500 products. For smaller sized shops we would go for WordPress with the free to use WooCommerce plugin. There are all sorts of plugins you can install on WordPress websites to make them have all the functions you need, so the installing process is pretty straightforward and user-friendly. If you’re looking for an even easier way to develop a blog or website, you can always count on WordPress.com.

WordPress.com

WordPress.com keeps most of the more advanced features for Premium users, but it’s a lot easier to navigate if you haven’t ever used a CMS platform before. If you prefer to pay and have the platform do all the hard work for you, WordPress.com is the best option you’ve got out there. It’s meant to be even more user-friendly than its .org version, so you should have no issues using it to create any website. Keep in mind that if you want some free CMS solution, WordPress.org might be better for you: with WordPress.com, the free version won’t get you very far, but if you just want to create a blog for your company, it should suit you alright.

Drupal

Now if you’re an advanced user, Drupal should be well-known for you. For high-traffic websites, this is the best solution out there, close to WordPress.org when it comes to the number of users worldwide. Being open-source, you’ll have to host it using PHP on an Apache server, which makes it more difficult to implement than the other options we mentioned previously. For enterprise platforms, Drupal is the more suitable option, being able to withstand a large amount of traffic and having plenty of customisation available through thousands of modules available. You don’t even need to know how to code, being able to use one of the over two thousand themes available to build your custom solution.

Ghost

This one is widely considered to be the best CMS for bloggers. You can either pay for the Pro version and just get it set up instantaneously or host it in your server if the requirements for it are met. It is quite clean-looking, but don’t be fooled – it’s a lot more work to set it up if you don’t choose the Pro version (in comparison to WordPress). Ghost’s “integrations” work as plugins on WordPress, allowing you to set up many options like e-commerce, newsletters and many other features.

Grav

Made for small websites, Grav uses flat-file architecture, which means you don’t need to create a database on MySQL or anything similar to use it. Your whole website can be stored in a single file on your server. This makes it quite easy to install and to create backups for, however, if you’re thinking about using it for a bigger project, forget about it. Grav is lightweight for a reason – you can’t build huge websites using it without realising its shortcomings. However, for simpler websites, Grav should be enough and much easier to set up than WordPress.

Prestashop

Prestashop is a great CMS tool if you want an easy to set up e-commerce solution. If can be used at your store as an invoicing platform as well, so you’ll have all your sales connected with your stock data. You can choose the theme for your online store, but Prestashop is supposed to be simple so don’t expect to be able to code many changes to your online shop. However, it’s still a pretty good solution if you want a hassle-free e-commerce solution.

Shopify

Shopify is arguably the most widely known option for adding an online store to your website. Boasting over a million clients worldwide, Shopify is a good solution for medium to large-sized e-commerce shops. It provides themes that are both customisable and responsive, however, if you’re looking for an option in which you can code your way through it, Shopify is not your best option. Most things on Shopify are ready-made and suit many different needs, however, if you need a bespoke solution, it might not be your option.

Magento

Once again talking about e-commerce, Magento might not have the same amount of clients as Shopify, but it’s more suitable for products and services that need a bit of tinkering about to be integrated into an online shop. If you have a shop with over two thousand five hundred items, you’ll probably need Magento. It allows you to have a larger database and to customise further than Shopify while allowing for extensions that make your life easier as an e-commerce manager.

Wix

If customisation does not matter much to you and you just want your website set up quickly and easily, Wix might be what you’re looking for. This CMS platform comes with plenty of templates that will make any entry-level user happy while making the web development process incredibly easy. However, don’t expect to be able to do with Wix the same you could be doing with a CMS like WordPress – Wix is an entry-level solution like we mentioned, so don’t expect a lot of customisation.

Webflow

If the perspective of coding to create a new website is daunting for you but you don’t want a cookie-cutter like website, Webflow might be your best bet. Webflow not only offers the CMS but also provides hosting, which makes it a lot easier if you need a website done quickly but don’t want to miss out on customisation. It is also responsive, which is highly important in an age in which mobile searches make up for more than half of the total web traffic. Webflow also provides you with a lot of research material that can be helpful in creating the perfect website for you.

Squarespace

Squarespace is an all-in-one solution if you’re looking for a beautiful website. With hosting, plenty of templates to choose from, and custom domains with zero hassle, you can adjust your website to your needs without needing to go the extra mile. It also includes blogging spaces, SEO tools and much more in a single CMS platform, so Squarespace enters this list as one of our favourites for creating a website in a fast and effective manner.

Conclusion

This is our rundown of twelve CMS platforms for 2019 and 2020 that will probably withstand the test of time. Some are older, some are more recent. No matter what, you’ll find a solution for you on this list – it all comes down to your needs for your website and your team’s coding skills. There’s a bit for everyone on this list, so just pick your favourite and you should be all set. Ready?

Not sure which platform is most suited to your business? Then get in touch with our team and we’ll be happy to assist you with your next project.

 

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Websites by Silva Web Designs…

As you may already know, we are a team of developers working remotely across the world, working together to deliver projects in a timely manner without compromising quality!

We offer the following packages:-

  • Brand design
  • Responsive design
  • CMS systems
  • E-commerce
  • Email campaigns
  • SEO (Search Engine Optimisation)
  • App development
  • Hosting
  • Social Media Marketing
  • Copywriting / Content Creation

 

And much more, however, our main passion is web design!

So what do you get from a website build by Silva Web Designs?

In a nutshell, you will get a clean, responsive website that is fully optimised for SEO and speed. We can help you grow your business, whether you need assistance with Copywriting, Google Adwords, Social Media Marketing or anything else in the digital world… we have you covered!

We also provide maintenance and love to develop long-term relationships with our clients, our goal is to help you with every step of your journey to make you as successful as you can be.

Between our team, we have decades of agency experience in building websites that convert… Don’t be fooled by crazy agency prices when you can get the same (or a lot better) quality delivered for a massive deduction of the price!

Which frameworks do we use?

We love WordPress but that’s not our limit, we also work with Squarespace, Drupal, Magento, Shopify, OpenCart, PrestaShop and Larvael to name a few. Whatever the project, we can deliver.

So how do you deliver such a great service?

Taking our most recent project; BeauSocial.

The client wanted a single page web site and needed our team to create a bespoke design and bespoke WordPress theme for their new website. They needed a fairly quick turnaround, a few days… not weeks! (or months, god forbid)

And so we got cracking on this for our client immediately and delivered in just a few days 😉

That’s not to say we rushed the job, we just have the experience to deliver quality work 24/7 to keep out clients super satisfied.

95% of the time, we build bespoke websites, why? Because it gives us the ability to build a website without any restrictions, is built with SEO and speed in mind from the get-go and it’s very easy to update any content/images and everything else across the site.

So the result of BeauSocial was as follows; here is the design of the website:-

https://beausocial.com

As you can see, it’s pixel-perfect to function correctly regardless of browser size and device. Responsive websites at it’s best 😉

Okay, so what else? Well, speed is a major important factor with SEO and the results below show that we definitely adhered to our promises:-

We then continued to support our client helping with their social media accounts, Google AdWords campaigns and providing regular maintenance on their website.

Client = Estatic.

Summary

We have helped a lot of clients now achieving their digital goals at a fraction of the price that you would pay a digital agency.

Is there any benefit to using a design agency? The simple answer is no. You will get the same or better quality and a quicker turnaround in most cases and a massively discounted price that you would pay any agency… People always believe that paying more will result in better quality but that’s not the case in web design at all.

If you need a web developer for your next project, whether it’s a complete rebuild, new website, website updates, maintenance or anything else in the digital world, feel free to drop us an email and we would love to work with you; [email protected]

If you have come this far, thanks for reading… look forward to working with you in the future.

∆ The Silva Team ∆

 

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