Once you have set up an online store, the next obvious step is for you to start running marketing and advertising campaigns to drive traffic to it. But when it comes to converting this traffic, your product pages may not be enough.
You could have detailed out a product well and included the best description, but a visitor may still choose to leave your website without making an interaction. This is where you need to add elements that subtly nudge this visitor towards taking an action – even if it is as small as following your brand on social media.
The good thing is that if your store is on Shopify, you don’t need to build these additional features from scratch. There is an app that you can plug and play to get started in minutes!
To make things even simpler, we’ve created a list of the best Shopify apps to help optimize your ecommerce website for conversions.
- Converting visitors into subscribers
- Creating purchase nudges
- Sharing social proof
- Making sale and discount announcements
- Offer shopping assistance
- Personalized shopping experiences
- Get the communication going
- Word of mouth marketing
- Drive repeat sales
- Understanding your visitors and customers
The following list of apps has been curated on the basis of what leading brands are making use of. To keep things streamlined, we’re including only a few names in the list, but you can explore all the options available to you in our Shopify App Store.
Converting visitors into subscribers
If you’re driving traffic to your website, the very first set of Shopify apps you need are ones that can help you capture their details. Let’s take a look at the best Shopify apps for conversions based on the strategies they help you implement.
1. Email/ phone number popups
One of the most effective ways to nudge a visitor to share their contact details or make an interaction, is using popups. These are windows/ overlays that show up on top of your web pages with a message that offers a discount or deal in lieu of an email address or a phone number.
You can use apps like Privy, Optimonk and Rivo Email popups to set these up on your store. The only thing you need to ensure is that your popup adds value to your store visitor and has something enticing to offer. It is also important to ensure that it gets triggered at the right moment to avoid being intrusive.
Here are two examples of popups:
This helps you build an owned audience with a subscriber list of consumers who are more likely to make a purchase from you. In turn, this will also help you navigate the cookieless future of ecommerce.
2. Gamified email popups
Another great way to capture visitor intent through pop ups is using gamification. This is when you turn the entire experience of the give and take of the offer in lieu of contact details into an interactive and engaging game.
You can implement gamified popups like mystery gifts or spin the wheel to hold a visitor’s attention and make the sign up/ subscribe process more engaging. There are apps like WooHoo that can help you implement these with customizable templates and offers for the games.
Here’s an example of a gamified popup:
3. Form builder
If you are selling products that require online shoppers to share their requirements or customize items, or need a trial/ assistance from you, you can use a form builder to let interested visitors leave their queries and requests.
Once you have identified the fields you require in the form, you can set one up using apps like the Form Builder by Globo or the Form Builder by Hulk Apps. Both the apps come with pre-built form templates that you can customize and add to any of your store pages.
Creating purchase nudges
Now visitors that do decide to stay on your store and browse through pages often need a nudge towards a purchase decision. If you play by psychology rules, you can do this by actively showing them what others are doing.
4. Countdown timer
Create FOMO on your products, deals and discounts by adding a countdown timer on your website. This is typically to let a visitor know that the product or deal they’re interested in may not be available for too long, and they need a purchase decision faster.
You can easily add a countdown timer with the help of apps like the Countdown Timer by Hextom. It lets you easily add a countdown timer in the form of a promotion bar on popups, product pages, cart pages and other locations from where a visitor is likely to drop off.
5. Live sales notifications
Another way to create FOMO and nudge a visitor towards making a purchase decision is displaying live sales notification. As they browse through the website, you can show them how many people are viewing the product at that moment or the sales you’re making. The actions of others are a good nudge to a visitor in their decision making phase.
You can do this with the help of the Sales & Live Activity Pop app by CartKit. The app lets you customize the look and feel, as well as the placement of these live sales notifications on your site to create a non-intrusive experience for shoppers.
Here’s an example of a live sales notification:
Sharing social proof
About 87% of buying decisions start with research on the experience a product or a brand is able to deliver. This typically includes looking into product reviews, ratings and the content shared by other consumers.
6. Product reviews and ratings
The very first form of social proof that you can display on the store are product reviews and ratings. You can display this form of social proof on your product pages to reassure visitors about the quality and the experience the particular product has to offer.
You can easily display product reviews and ratings on product pages, or even your homepage, using apps like Judge.me and Loox. The apps enable you to also set up custom automations to request product reviews, making it simpler for customers to share their feedback and also include product pictures with the same.
Here’s an example of a store displaying product reviews along with purchase pictures:
7. User generated content
48% of online shoppers say that user generated content is one of the leading ways for them to discover new products. User generated content typically refers to the product pictures and videos that customers share on social media or are willing to contribute to your store directly.
You can collect and display your user generated content using apps like Cevoid and Okendo. The two apps are able to pull user generated content from social media as well as reviews to help you display the authentic content in easily viewable widgets across the store. It’s a great way to show how your existing customers are using the products purchased.
Here’s how Krafted with Happiness displays user generated content on their Instagram feed on the website:
Making sale and discount announcements
As an online business, you probably leverage sales every now and then to acquire customers. You may also choose to run discounts and deals on specific products or collections for defined durations. But it’s important to get them noticed instead of leaving it to a store visitor to discover on their own.
8. Announcement bar
One of the most used and effective ways to get important announcements noticed is using an announcement bar. This is a sticky overlay that you can display either at the top of your website or at the bottom, across all the pages to make the message unmissable.
You can add an announcement bar using an app like Quick Announcement Bar by Hextom. The Shopify app comes with a number of templates that you can customize to suit your store branding, promotional copy and call to action.
Here are two examples of announcement bars:
9. Banner images
Another effective way to promote your ongoing or upcoming deals, discounts and more, are banner images. You can add these banner images on your home page in the form of static images or even sliders if you’re promoting multiple things. Banner images can also be added to your product pages to drive the targeted traffic you receive on them to a desired page.
You can do this with the help of apps like Because – Product page banners. It helps you set up dynamic banners using customizable templates for different use cases and promotions.
Here are two different banner images being used by Quirksmith:
Offer shopping assistance
Owing to the lack of touch and feel, online shoppers often have a hard time making purchase decisions. This is where they seek help from the brand in order to learn more about the products they are interested in.
10. Live chat
As per statistics, about 41% of customers use live chat to reach out to brands for customer support. This is a channel through which a store visitor can reach out to get more information around products or the policies your store offers on purchases.
You can set up a live chat on your store using Shopify Inbox. The app lets you set up a custom live chat widget on your store, and also automate responses to frequently asked questions. You can also use apps like Gorgias to automate customer support on more channels like social media.
If you’re new to chatbots and how to use them, read this article on ecommerce chatbots.
If you’re looking at keeping your live chat requests to a minimum, it is a good idea to set up FAQs on your store. You can set up an FAQ section on product pages, policy pages or create a dedicated page to display all the questions in one place.
While some Shopify themes come with an FAQ page template, there are also apps like Easy FAQ Page and Help Center to help you with the same. They offer pre-built templates for FAQ sections and pages, that can be customized to further cater to your needs.
Here’s an example of how AndMe displays FAQs on product pages:
Personalized shopping experiences
As per McKinsey, the majority of online shoppers now expect personalization from brands they are interested in. This includes the experience they’re offered on the website, and how they’re introduced to other products on the store.
12. Product recommendations
Product recommendations basically refer to displaying items similar to a visitor’s interest or previous purchases. This helps them discover items that may offer more value to them or should be bought together with the product they intend to purchase; which is pretty similar to how Amazon introduces products to new and repeat visitors.
You can display personalized product recommendations with the help of Shopify apps like LimeSpot and Wiser. Both the Shopify apps come with multiple types of widgets to display recommended items – new arrivals, similar products, frequently bought together, trending, hot selling and more; which leverage customer data and product variants to display products.
Here’s an example of how product recommendations appear:
13. Customer account page
One of the reasons why we all love shopping from Amazon is the ability to access products of our interest, delivery addresses and other purchase information in one place. The customer account page serves as a personal shopping space where we get to save products in wishlists, set up recurring orders, save multiple delivery addresses and more.
You can set up an extensive customer account page like that of Amazon on your Shopify store with the help of apps like Flits. The Shopify app comes with two templates for customer account pages that can be customized to match your branding, and plenty of add-on features like wishlists, delivery addresses, reorders and more.
Here’s an example of a customer account page:
Get the communication going
Right from the point of their first interaction, you need to establish consistent communication with your subscribers and customers. The idea is to stay on top of their minds to drive a purchase if they haven’t already, or stay on top of their minds to ensure they keep coming back to make more.
14. Email marketing
The only way to make email work for your brand is to make sure you send out the messages in a timely manner. This is why you need to automate your email marketing campaigns before, during and after a consumer makes a purchase.
The most common email marketing automations include sending out welcome emails, transactional emails, order status alerts and abandoned cart recovery reminders. You can also use the channel to send promotional emails and newsletter to get your discounts and deals noticed.
You can set them all up using the Shopify Email app. The app comes with pre-built templates and a drag and drop editor that you can use to design branded emails in minutes, and set up the automations in one place.
15. Web push notifications
Another popular channel that is easy to get online shoppers to opt into are web push notifications. That’s because it does not require them to share email addresses or phone numbers with the business; the notification/ alert appears on their desktop or mobile screen in a non-intrusive way.
You can set up automated web push notifications for promotions, abandoned cart recovery and even time-sensitive deals with the help of apps like Firepush and PushOwl. Both of them come with workflows for different objectives that can be customized further, including the message and visuals you add to the notifications.
Here’s an example of a web push notification:
16. Facebook Messenger
About 21.7% of India’s internet users are actively making use of Facebook Messenger. That’s why we believe it’s important to tap into this messaging platform to communicate with your followers and customers more regularly.
With Shopify apps like Recart, you can set up smart automations on Facebook Messenger. From welcoming new followers and subscribers to sending order updates, cart recovery reminders and more, the app lets you do it all with pre-built workflows that can be customized further to suit the audience you’re targeting.
17. SMS marketing
Text messages are the most commonly used form of communication. As per statistics, text messages see a 98% open rate, which is much higher than any of the marketing channels brands can leverage for promotions.
With Shopify apps like SMSBump, Postscript and TxtCart, you can set up text message automations for marketing, cart recovery and support purposes. All the apps also offer ready-to-use templates alongside automation for various objectives to make it simpler to get started with.
Here’s an example of SMS marketing:
18. WhatsApp marketing
One of the most popular channels of communication in India is WhatsApp and that’s why brands have started to leverage the messaging platform proactively. From sending broadcasts to promote their deals to recovering carts, offering customer support and more, the WhatsApp Business API enables it all.
You can set up WhatsApp marketing and support automation with the help of apps like Interakt, Zoko and QuickReply.ai. But if you’d like to learn more about using WhatsApp for business, read this article.
Here’s an example of a WhatsApp message:
Word of mouth marketing
As per statistics, 92% of consumers trust product recommendations and suggestions from friends and family over advertisements from the brand itself. But to get customers to proactively recommend your products in their network is easier said than done. That’s where setting up a referral marketing program comes in.
19. Referral marketing
A referral program basically refers to a strategy wherein you reward your existing customers to refer their friends and family to your brand. In most cases, both the referrer and the referred customer gets a little reward that they can redeem in the purchase they make from the store, making each more likely to participate and take a desired action.
You can set up a referral marketing program with the help of Shopify apps like ReferralCandy. Apart from setting up a referral program, the app also easily integrates with other marketing apps so that you can keep customers engaged with it more proactively. It also includes a detailed analytics dashboard that lets you track referrals and the revenue you generate from it with ease, helping you optimize it for higher conversions.
Drive repeat sales
Owing to the increase in the options available to an online shopper, it’s important to add strategies and elements that will keep them coming back to your store. This includes tactics such as giving the ability to set up recurring orders or creating a customer loyalty program.
20. Customer loyalty program
A customer loyalty program is basically a strategy that rewards customers for every interaction they make with your brand. This includes sharing product reviews and ratings on the purchases made, creating an account on your store, referring their friends, or making another purchase from you, in lieu of rewards like store credits, loyalty points, cashback and others.
You can set up a custom loyalty program with the help of Shopify apps like Smile.io, Growave or Rise.ai. The apps let you set up a loyalty program page and also tiered rewards to boost customer engagement on the marketing tactic.
Here’s an example from Bath & Body works:
Looking for customer loyalty program examples? Read this article.
21. Ecommerce subscriptions and memberships
One more strategy that you can use to ensure your customers keep coming back for more is setting up a subscription or membership program. This typically includes letting a customer set up recurring orders for a defined period of time, simplifying the process of getting their essentials easily without going through the entire purchase cycle.
You can set up ecommerce subscriptions on a specific set of products or collections, or on all purchases made from the store, using apps like Appstle Subscriptions. They also let you create custom payment modes and subscription models tailored to suit your business type.
Understanding your visitors and customers
Every consumer is different and how they choose to interact with your online store may differ based on their interest and purchase motivations. This is why it is important for you to continually monitor the interaction on your web pages and optimize for higher conversions.
Heatmaps are a representation of data in the form of a map or a diagram in which the various values are represented with different colors. A heatmap basically helps you see the sections or elements on your website that a visitor pays the most attention to and interacts with. It also helps you identify the call to actions that nudge this visitor to take a desired action.
One of the best Shopify apps for this is Lucky Orange. The app lets you watch how visitors interact with your website or navigate through it in real-time, helping you optimize the user experience and journey accordingly. This is especially important for times when you’re running time-sensitive sales and discounts like flash sales.
23. Shopify analytics
Another way to understand your store visitors and customers is to look into your data. The best way to do so is to leverage Shopify Analytics and Reports available on your dashboard as it comprises all the information you need.
From where your website traffic is coming from, the demographics of your customers, most visited pages, popular sales channels, discounts used and more, the reports have it all. You can learn more about Shopify analytics and reports here.
Which Shopify apps do you need?
While the above Shopify apps are targeted at helping you improve the customer experience on the website and establish seamless communication, we do recommend being mindful of the apps you add.
Start by analyzing the needs of your online store, the objectives and goals you want to achieve and the strategies you’d like to implement. Post which, you should start looking at the Shopify apps that will help you achieve those goals, shortlisting ones that offer the best of features for the same!
Remember, add only what you need.
If you’re looking for apps that will help you bring efficiency to invoicing, order management, logistics and similar functions, explore this list of best Shopify apps.
And if you’re looking at extending the channels or platforms on which your products are available, learn more about Shopify channels here.
Frequently asked questions
Why do we need Shopify apps?
Shopify apps help you extend the functionality of your online store by adding features that are more targeted at driving conversions. For instance, adding announcement bars, countdown timers and similar. They are like add-ons to your Shopify store.
How do I use Shopify apps?
Once you have identified the apps you need, you simply need to head over to the Shopify app store, search for the app and click on ‘add app’. You will be able to now see the app in your Shopify store admin dashboard where you can further customize the settings for it.
How do I search for an app on Shopify?
Head over to the Shopify app store and search for the app you need using phrases that describe what it does. If you know the name of the app, you can use the search bar, type in the name to reach its listing.
How to choose the best Shopify app?
We recommend going through the features of the Shopify app and also the reviews it has received to be able to choose the best Shopify app. The goal is to find an app that equips you with powerful features as well as customer support that helps you with the set up.