Guide to Picking The Right Theme For Your Shopify Store

Your store’s design is crucial to ensure your shoppers stay and interact with your store for longer. Good design reflects your brand’s personality and makes it easy for shoppers to browse your store. In this blog, we want to help you pick the right theme for your Shopify store.

With this 6-step checklist, you can pick the theme that ticks off all your requirements and learn how to customize it easily. 

6 Step Checklist to Pick the Right Theme for your Shopify Store

1. Understand your budget

The Shopify Theme Store has a lot of themes to choose from— free and paid. Before you start looking at the themes, you need to figure out your budget. Free themes are very versatile and you can drag and drop different elements to customize the theme to your brand. 

If you have a budget for your store design, you can either get a paid theme or hire a design agency to customize your theme for you. Here’s a quick breakdown of both:

Paid theme Design agency
Pricing Pricing starts at $140. Custom web design rates are based on your specific needs.
Set up You will be required to set it up, create designs, and customize the theme to your liking. The agency will set it up for you and create and set up every element for your design.
Future customizations You will have to make future customizations. All customizations will be done by the web developer in the future.
Design details Paid themes work just like free ones. You can drag and drop elements to your preference. Your store design can be customized to the finest details. The designers will work with you to create the mockup and 

If you have the bandwidth to customize your theme, you can choose a paid theme and customize it without any issues. However, if you don’t have a designer or developer, it’s best to work with a design agency. 

At XgenTech, we work with Shopify stores across the globe to set up the perfect design for their store. It’s important that your virtual storefront reflects who you are and we ensure that we deliver a design you are happy with. 

Reach out to us on info@xgentech.net to review your store design and understand how we can improve your store design.

2. Research your competitors

You can grab some inspiration from your competitors to understand the different elements you can add to your store. Here are some things to note:

  • What theme are they using? You can use a Shopify theme detector to learn about their theme. If the search says that they didn’t find a theme, they are either not on Shopify or they are using a custom theme developed by an agency.
  • What elements do they have on their storefront? This can be a bestseller section, blog posts, categories, etc. 
  • What makes their store design stand out? Do they use color to highlight different parts of the store? Do they have product highlights for their best products?
  • What is an element in their design that is distracting? This can be a pop-up or too much text.

3. List the essential features you would like your store to have

Whether you are designing your store yourself or working with an agency to do it, you need to list some must-have features for your Shopify store. By listing these features, it’ll be easier for you to find the right theme faster. You can use your competitor research to grab inspiration for this. 

Here are some ideas to help you get started with your list:

  • Header with video
  • New product highlight section
  • Cart drawer
  • Product filtering
  • Email pop-up
  • Catalog size

4. Check out the themes available

Now that you have your elements listed, you can start looking through your themes. The Shopify Theme Store has 72 themes to choose from. You can use the filters within the list to filter themes based on your catalog size, layout, homepage, product page, and more.

When working with an agency, this step looks very different. Once you have figured out the kinds of elements you want on your store, the agency will provide a design mockup that you can review. You can work with the agency to tweak it to your preferences. Once the mockup is approved, it is developed onto your site and taken live.

5. Shortlist them based on features, pricing, and your preference

Through the filters, you’ll have shortlisted some themes based on the requirements that the themes fulfill. First, try out and customize the free themes that you liked to see how well they work for you. You may have a budget for your theme but it’s always best to try out the free themes available anyway.

You might find that one of the free themes tick all the categories and with some deep customizations, you can make it work for your store. However, if the theme is missing very important features, it’s best to go for a paid theme that does fulfill this requirement.

Note: Even with free themes, you can hire a Shopify expert to develop the add-on features that the theme doesn’t have. 

6. Pick the winning theme and customize it to how you want it

Now that you have selected your theme, it’s time to customize it to your preferences. The theme is a skeleton of the design you want for your store. You can customize it to the most minute details to fit the design you want. Here’s how we suggest you go about it:

  • Make your header image pop! 

Your header is the first thing people see when they land on your store and it needs to be attention-grabbing. Don’t overcrowd the header image with too many elements. Keep the copy on the header short and add a button to take them to your catalog.

Here’s how Blue Door Organics has done it: 

  • Edit colors based on your brand colors.

You can do this by clicking on ‘Online store’ on your Shopify dashboard, and selecting ‘Customize’ next to the live site section. Test out different combinations. Ensure that your ‘Accept’ buttons are either blue or green to indicate positivity.

  • Ensure copy reflects your brand voice. Edit the copy on your store to reflect your brand voice, whether it’s calm and reassuring or excited.
  • Place buttons to engage shoppers. Always take your shoppers to your products or catalog with buttons. Whether this is on your header image or under your featured products, or a product highlight section.
  • Ensure your menu navigation shows your categories. Your menu navigation should have a Homepage to take them back to the storefront, your different product categories, a Contact page, and an About page. Here’s an example from the brand Sans Faff:

  • Add an About page with your brand story. Make your shoppers empathize with your brand with an About page that explains why you started the store. Here’s an example from the store, Rowing Blazers:

  • Add a page about your hygiene standards. During this time, it’s crucial to inform your shoppers about your store’s hygiene, from your manufacturing to packaging, to delivery.
  • Customize your footer. Add all your pages to your footer for easy access. You can also add an email signup form here and links to your brand’s social profiles. A simple customization like Lindsay Nicholas’s store does the trick too:

Choose the right Shopify theme!

We know that choosing a theme for your store is an overwhelming process. You want it to reflect your brand’s personality, but at the same time, you want to make sure that your target customers love it too! 

With so many parameters including the functionality of the app, responsiveness, customization, and more to take into consideration, a lot of brands make the mistake of choosing the wrong theme. 

Well, that’s why we’re here. 

The XgenTech team focuses on understanding what your Shopify brand is all about and helps you choose a theme that can be customized to suit your style and make your customers fall in love with your brand. 

Need help? Reach out to us on info@xgentech.net

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