How to Make Money on Shopify in 2024

If you subscribe to a service from a link on this page, Reeves and Sons Limited may earn a commission. See our ethics statement.

how to make money on shopify

It seems to me that as of late, everyone is thinking about setting up a Shopify store. The ecommerce platform has become an excellent gateway for people who are interested in making money online and diversifying their income streams, mainly because of how easy it is to get your store up and running.

In the United States alone, Shopify owns 28% of the ecommerce platform market, and every other person thinking of setting up a store uses Shopify to get started.

Don’t get me wrong; Shopify isn’t just for starters.

Big names like Heinz, Gymshark, and Red Bull all use Shopify. It’s extremely versatile, which no doubt contributes to its success.

There are plenty of ways to make money with Shopify, and no, it’s not just about starting a store and selling something. That’s what we’re going to explore!

10 Ways to Make Money on Shopify

In this article, we’ll talk about 10 ways people are using Shopify to generate an income.

1. Launch Your Shopify Store

By far the most common (and most effective) way to make money on this ecommerce platform is by launching a Shopify store. Setting up your Shopify store is extremely easy.

Now, let's talk about what you're selling. Back in the day, you needed a garage full of stuff to sell stuff. Not anymore. Shopify is all about giving you options.

You can source your products from various sources, and if you already have a retail outlet, you can simply take it online.

If you are already running a business or have an idea for what you want to sell, this ecommerce platform is easily the best choice. You don’t need to be tech-savvy at all to get started.

Its setup process is like following a recipe for your favorite dish—simple, step-by-step, and pretty much foolproof. You pick a theme that screams “you,” throw in your products, set up how you want to get paid, and voila, you're ready to roll.

It's like playing in a sandbox, but instead of sand, you're playing with designs, features, and all the cool stuff that makes a store uniquely yours.

Sure, you’ll have to spend $29 at the very least per month for the Basic plan (or check out our full Shopify pricing plan comparison), but you get a ton of additional features, such as: detailed sales reporting, shipping and tax rate calculations, and a lot more for that price.

Unlike other ecommerce platforms like WooCommerce, Shopify doesn’t require a whole lot of tinkering before you start selling, which makes it such an easy draw for aspiring ecommerce store owners.

2. Start Your Own Shopify Dropshipping Business

One of the easiest ways to make money with your Shopify store is to start your own dropshipping business.

Dropshipping has become a buzzword for good reason—it's accessible, low-risk, and offers a flexibility that's hard to beat.

Let me break down why it's so popular and why so many entrepreneurs are diving headfirst into it.

Unlike traditional retail models, you don't need to stockpile inventory or rent a storage space. The thought of investing a hefty sum in products without knowing if they'd sell is daunting.

With dropshipping, you only order from suppliers once you've made a sale. No unsold stock means no unnecessary costs, making it an incredibly low-risk venture.

Dropshipping also offers the ultimate location flexibility. As long as you have a laptop and an internet connection, you're in business.

The ability to manage your store from anywhere in the world means you aren’t anchored to one place.

Plus, here’s the real kicker: you're not limited by what you sell. Many dropshippers choose products on the fly depending on what’s trending and maximize their profits.

Remember fidget spinners? Yep, there are people who ended up becoming millionaires by selling those toys online!

3. Start a Clothing Brand (Print-on-Demand!)

The allure of print-on-demand (PoD) lies in its incredible flexibility and minimal upfront costs.

Imagine being able to design your own products—be it t-shirts, pants, accessories, or home decor—without worrying about inventory or unsold stock.

This is what makes PoD so appealing. Each product is printed and shipped only when a customer places an order, significantly reducing the financial risks associated with traditional retail.

Plus, with services like Printful, the whole process is all too easy. You have the opportunity to create unique designs that cater to specific niches or trends. This level of personalization and uniqueness can set your products apart in a crowded marketplace.

And the best part? You can continuously test and update your designs based on customer feedback without any additional cost.

In fact, you can even create a custom section where your customers can design their own products and get them shipped through your store, like Redbubble does.

The reason why I mention PoD is because of the profit margins. The key here is that you're not making a large upfront investment in inventory. Instead, your costs are directly tied to production, which only happens after a sale is made.

This type of online store allows you to set your own prices and control your margins more effectively. By offering unique, high-quality designs and targeting them to the right audience, you can command higher prices and thus, enjoy higher profit margins.

Plus, as your brand gains traction and your sales increase, your business can grow without the need to invest in additional physical resources or deal with the complexities of managing inventory.

Your print on demand upstream partner handles all the production and shipping logistics, allowing you to focus on creating designs and marketing your brand.

Your primary focus would be on SEO, marketing, and making sure that you promote your ecommerce business on social media.

4. Join the Shopify Affiliate Program

shopify affiliates make money with shopify

You may have read about affiliate marketing for ecommerce and its benefits. If not, it’s basically you promoting another product, and for each sale made as a result of your promotional efforts, you get a commission.

Picture this: you've got a knack for creating engaging content or a platform that draws in an audience. Now, imagine turning that influence into a steady stream of income, all without stocking a single product. Sounds pretty good, right?

That's the essence of the Shopify Affiliate Marketing Program.

Whether you're running a blog, a YouTube channel, or any platform that allows you to engage with an audience, you're set. It's about harnessing the power of your content to introduce your followers to Shopify.

You could be reviewing e-commerce platforms, offering tutorials on starting online businesses, or just sharing your entrepreneurial journey. Each piece of content is an opportunity to include your referral link and earn commissions.

Or, you could be teaching others about the power of entrepreneurship. It's not just about making money; it's about being part of your audience's success stories by guiding them to a platform that can help turn their business dreams into reality.

Plus, Shopify supports its affiliates with resources to help you craft compelling content that converts. This means you're not just throwing links around; you're providing genuine recommendations that can make a difference in someone's life.

And let's not forget the benefits that go beyond just earning commissions. Being an affiliate for a brand as reputable as Shopify adds a layer of credibility to your content.

You're aligning yourself with a global leader in e-commerce, which can boost your authority in the online business space.

Plus, it's a chance to deepen your relationship with your audience by offering them valuable resources to kickstart or grow their businesses. It’s important to mention that Shopify doesn’t always reveal how much you get per referral.

However, we can tell you that for each qualified referral, you can make around $150. By qualified, we mean someone who signs up and converts to Shopify’s paid plan using your tracking link.

5. Create a Shopify Theme or an App

If you know a thing or two about design or coding, developing Shopify themes or apps can be your golden ticket. It's about using your skills to create something that not only looks good but adds real value to online stores.

While you get a selection of free themes, most users generally prefer upgrading to a paid option as it unlocks a variety of new features for them. The same goes for Shopify apps.

Here’s the thing: Shopify has a massive ecosystem. With thousands of entrepreneurs scouring the Shopify Theme Store and Shopify App Store, the potential for your theme or app to get noticed and used is huge.

And with each download or purchase, you're not just earning money; you're building a portfolio, a reputation, and a client base that can lead to even more opportunities.

Let's not gloss over the monetary aspect, though. Selling themes or apps on Shopify can be quite lucrative. You set your price, and with each sale, you see direct financial rewards.

Plus, if your theme or app becomes a hit, we're talking about passive income that can keep your bank account happy while you sleep. It's the kind of setup where your initial investment of time and effort pays off in spades down the line.

And here's a pro tip: Shopify store owners are always on the lookout for ways to optimize their operations, improve customer engagement, or simply make their stores prettier.

If you can tap into those needs and offer a solution through your theme or app, you've got a winning formula. It's about identifying those gaps in the market and filling them with your creativity and technical skills.

6. Sell Digital Products and Direct Downloads

As I talked about before, you aren’t limited to selling physical products. If you have a penchant for creating digital products, you can easily set up a Shopify store and start selling them.

You only have to create the product once, and boom, you can sell it as many times as you like. Here's the deal with digital products: they're a gold mine because you're not dealing with the usual hassle of physical products.

No boxes, no shipping – none of that. You create something awesome, list it, and when someone buys it, they download it.

Easy peasy. And the cool part?

Your earnings can really rack up since you're not paying to restock or ship anything.

Let's talk about what you can sell. It's not just about selling online courses or e-books, though I’ll admit, there’s lots of money to be made with those.

Got a talent for design? Sell some templates. Into music? Create and sell your beats. Big into crypto?

Start selling a course on crypto trading, or sell some NFTs! The sky's the limit. In fact, there are now people selling custom GPTs!

Plus, there’s lots of potential for upselling in this space too. We already know that people are after maximum value with every purchase they make, and with digital products, you can throw in a bunch of goodies.

Say your customer is picking up a Photoshop tutorial from you. Why not offer them a bundle of your best templates at checkout? It’s a win-win.

They get a deal, and you get to increase your average order value.

In fact, Shopify has dedicated apps and themes for selling digital products, so you can even sell subscriptions.

7. Become a Shopify Partner

how to make money as a shopify partner

If you’re skilled in any part of the ecommerce journey, from conversion rate optimization to building, managing, or promoting online stores, you can also make money as a Shopify Partner.

Shopify has a program known as Shopify Partners (which was previously the Experts Marketplace), and is exactly what it sounds like: a platform that features trusted agencies and freelancers who offer their services to Shopify merchants in various categories:

  • Marketing
  • Content writing
  • Setting up your store
  • Setting up analytics and tracking
  • Visual content creation
  • Troubleshooting

Basically, for business owners who don’t want to hire someone to help with their stores from external platforms, and need a professional who's been vetted by Shopify themselves, they go to Shopify Partners.

If you’re finding it challenging to grow your store, we, at Ecommerce-Platforms, offer a full suite of growth consultancy services, from store migration to setup and troubleshooting.

We work with some of the top ecommerce experts in the space, and with more than 15 years of experience, can help take your ecommerce store to new heights.

8. Flip a Shopify Store

This is exactly what it sounds like: you buy a Shopify store, grow it a bit, and sell it for a profit. It’s like flipping houses, except instead of renovating, you’re streamlining processes.

And yes, there are plenty of marketplaces where you can buy and sell online businesses. For instance, if you’re into dropshipping but don’t want to go through the administrative and the startup hassle involved, you can just buy a dropshipping business and get started!

Here’s how it goes down. You start with a base—an existing Shopify store. It's got the essentials: a storefront, maybe a lineup of products, possibly even a few loyal customers.

But it’s missing that sparkle, that oomph. That’s where you come in, armed with creativity and a toolbox full of business strategies.

Whether it’s a fresh design, SEO optimization, or a complete operational overhaul, your mission is to elevate the store's value and appeal.

The objective is simple: To amplify the store's worth so when the sale sign goes up, you're not just making a profit; you're making a statement.

The financial upside of flipping Shopify stores can be as varied as the stores themselves. Some flippers pocket a few grand from quick turnovers, while others net hefty sums from more ambitious projects.

Your profit hinges on the value you can inject into the store and your prowess in marketing it to the next owner. It's this potential for significant returns that makes flipping such an enticing venture.

Obviously, I won’t recommend this method to those who’re just starting out in the ecommerce space. This is primarily for experienced business flippers and those with a sound understanding of the ecommerce space.

For those eyeing the flipping game, preparation is key. Understand the marketplace, grasp what drives success in the Shopify world, and map out how you'll add value to that store.

Building connections with potential buyers and immersing yourself in the Shopify community can also pave the way to your success.

9. Offer Freelance Services

You can also offer freelance services in the Shopify space to other entrepreneurs. Keep in mind that this is different from joining the Shopify Partners program or selling digital products; you’re setting up a storefront to sell your services to the ecommerce community.

And, there’s quite a bit that you can offer. The spectrum is wide and varied:

  • Graphic Design: From logo creation to full brand packages, you can offer design skills and even showcase your portfolio.
  • Copywriting and Content Creation: Businesses need compelling content, be it for their website, blog, or social media. You can provide that service.
  • Web Development and Design: Fairly self-explanatory. Build a store for your clients!
  • SEO and Digital Marketing: Helping businesses rank higher on search engines and improve their online visibility can be a game-changer. If you’re into SEO, leverage your knowledge!
  • Consulting Services: Whether it's business strategy, financial advice, or marketing insights, offer that as a service to clients!

The reason why I recommend using Shopify is because it gives you a professional-looking platform that reflects the quality of your work.

It’s not just about having a list of services; it’s about creating a brand for yourself, complete with testimonials, a portfolio, and a streamlined process for clients to hire you.

Moreover, Shopify isn’t just for physical goods; it’s a powerful tool for managing bookings and appointments.

You can integrate apps that allow clients to book your time directly from your store, making the process seamless for both you and them.

Plus, with Shopify Payments, handling finances becomes very easy, offering a secure way for clients to pay for your services upfront or deposit a retainer.

Utilizing Shopify also means you can leverage its marketing tools to attract new clients. From SEO features that help potential clients find you through Google to email marketing tools to keep your existing clients engaged, Shopify can be a powerful ally in growing your freelance business.

10. Sell on Social Media

New technologies have allowed online sellers to promote their products and sell on different platforms. For instance, who’d have thought that you would one day be able to sell stuff on messaging apps like WhatsApp?

Well, with the Shopify Starter plan, you can. Essentially, the plan is designed for merchants who’re just getting into the ecommerce groove, and are looking to leverage social media to sell.

The benefit is obvious: you don’t need to pay a lot of money, and there’s very little downside risk. Whether you’re planning to sell on Instagram or Facebook, you can use tools like Shopify’s Linkpop (which lets you add a link in your bio), to quickly showcase your offerings.

And, it’s cheap too: the Starter plan costs only $5 per month. If you want to start with direct selling on social media, using platforms like TikTok, Instagram, or Facebook, this is a great choice.

Social media platforms are packed with features that can boost your sales, like Instagram’s shopping posts or Facebook’s marketplace. The Shopify Starter plan lets you tap into these features, turning your social media presence into a powerful sales tool.

As I said, you’re not investing in building a full-fledged e-commerce site upfront. Instead, you're going where your audience already is, cutting down on customer acquisition costs and leveraging the platforms' built-in engagement tools to build relationships with your customers.

You can track business performance too using custom reports, as Shopify gives you access to a Live View, and reports including:

  • Customer reports
  • Acquisition reports
  • Inventory reports
  • Behavior reports
  • Marketing reports
  • Order reports
  • Sales reports
  • Product analytics

This is important, because you can check what products resonate with your audience, and how your content is performing in general, thus tailoring your marketing strategy accordingly. You can probably tell this is a great option for influencers.

Start Making Money with Shopify in 2024!

Now that I’ve covered 10 ways to make money with Shopify, it’s important to talk about the most important part: execution.

You can already tell that Shopify gives anyone with an interest in ecommerce an opportunity; you just have to take it.

Whether you’re a keen entrepreneur, a content creator,, or a marketer, you can use Shopify to your advantage. We are still early into 2024, so it’s time to get started!

Naj Ahmed

Naj Ahmed is an experienced content marketer and copywriter with a focus on SaaS offerings, startups, digital agencies, and ecommerce businesses. He’s worked closely with founders and digital marketers over the past eight years to produce articles, eBooks, newsletters, and guides. His interests include gaming, traveling, and reading.

Comments 0 Responses

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Rating *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Try Shopify for 3 months with $1/month!