The Shopify Plus Channel Software Development Kit (SDK) lets you connect with shoppers at unlimited touchpoints and interactions. You can use it to introduce your e-commerce store anywhere on the internet.
Putting Your E-commerce Store on the High Street
Remember the first three things you learned about starting a business? Location. Location. Location. When it comes to opening a storefront on the high street, it’s easy to understand what that means. More people are walking past, more people are there to shop, more people are willing to buy.
Translating that lesson to ecommerce is a bit trickier – there aren’t the same physical high streets to rent a space from, but that doesn’t mean they don’t exist. Instead, location on the internet refers to finding out where customers are – and putting yourself right in front of them. Online shopping opens up a world of possibilities for customers, who can now buy ten different things they want from ten different stores in five minutes, when it would have taken half a day to walk around and find them in person. It also means a whole new world of opportunity for ecommerce stores, who can be in hundreds of “places” at once.
The world of ecommerce is changing rapidly. Just a couple of years ago, merchants could only sell directly from their websites or go through conglomerates like Amazon with plenty of hassle attached. That’s no longer the case at all. You can integrate your store with multiple sales channels – meaning you can sell the same items on websites other than your store while keeping all of your inventory and checkout process centralised and easy to manage.
Sales channels are opening up left and right, letting you put your items directly where your customers are, using social selling like Buy Buttons on Instagram or Pinterest, conversational commerce through Facebook Messenger and more.
Shopify has come a long way in making it easier to integrate a store with other websites, and has introduced sales channels like Kik, Buzzfeed, Amazon and Houzz. Now it’s time to take it a step further.
Shopify Plus and the Sales Channel SDK
Shopify Plus is Shopify membership tailored for enterprise developers and merchants who want to get the most out of the ecommerce service with full customisation capability and powerful developer tools in a cloud-hosted platform. They’re about to introduce a Sales Channel Software Development Kit, allowing merchants to sell basically anywhere on the internet. Note that the sales channel SDK is only available for Shopify Plus members.
The Basics of Developing Your Own Sales Channel
The current sales channels that exist -- like Facebook, Twitter, Amazon, Pinterest and Wish, are a good start. But they’re by no means the only places people are using the internet. Shopify is opening up the possibility for merchants to build their own sales channel integrations.
Be where your customers are
If you know what websites your customers are using, you can build a sales channel that puts your products on their screens without them having to travel to your website. You can go past social media sales channels and get to any marketplace or website, mobile app and whatever’s next.
The easier you make it for your customers to buy your products online, the higher your conversion is likely to be. By making your customers notice your products when they’re already thinking about relevant things, you’re not making them go out of their way to buy. For example, the recently added Houzz sales channel lets you sell homeware to potential homebuyers -- when they’re looking around for a house, they’re already prone to getting excited by what they’ll put inside. And there you are, swooping in. When you develop your own, you’ll be getting potential shoppers at their pique interest.
Beat out the competition by getting there fast
When you develop your own sales channel, you’re the first to use it before it catches on with other merchants. That means you’ve got a window of time that a customer base is all yours to woo. Now’s the time to make it happen.
What Can You Do With The New SDK?
The new Sales Channel Software Development Kit includes APIs and a UI Kit. Here’s what you can do:
You can choose whether you want to list one highly targeted product or your whole catalogue.
Create Real-Time Checkouts Directly on the Third Party Website
Make it stupid easy for customers to buy a product without having to leave the website they found it on. You can include a checkout on a third-party site with all the features your customers expect: adding to a cart, reserving inventory, processing payments, and calculating shipping and taxes directly.
Jump the Queue
Shopify’s Sales Channel SDK isn’t available to everyone just yet -- so now’s exactly the time to jump on board. Sign up for early access and to start developing sales channels that bring your store to your customers.
Want to build a sales channel that brings you closer to your customers? Elkfox is here to help.
We are Shopify Plus Experts - certified developers that can help you build and create a custom Shopify experience that gets merchants closer to their customers in a targeted, creative and data-driven way. Talk to us today about using Shopify’s Sales Channel SDK.