Guide to moving your online shop from WordPress to Shopify

While WordPress-WooCommerce can be an effective solution for eCommerce websites, over time many store owners find themselves feeling frustrated and overwhelmed with their clunky WordPress system. 

Too many plugins, plugin conflicts breaking things, malware scares, slow web hosting and a lack of built-in conversion-analytics mean WordPress can become a stressful experience for store owners looking to optimise, automate and scale.

Here’s a story…

Last year I worked with the Bag Ladies Tea to move their website from WordPress to Shopify. The existing WordPress website was old (10+ years old), with outdated plugins that were no longer maintained by the developers. Every few months the website broke, causing the business owner, Tricia, so much stress and frustration as she tried to figure out what went wrong.

When I first spoke to Tricia, it was clear she was craving a user-friendly eCommerce website that worked all the time for her business. One where she no longer needed to worry about web hosting or software maintenance. One that was easy for her to manage.

I recommended Shopify as the best eCommerce solution for her established and beloved brand. I helped her carefully move everything across to the new Shopify space and created a new modern design that’s a beautiful reflection of her brand. View the before and after transformation here.

Why choose Shopify over your current setup?

Here are a few reasons:

  • Built for eCommerce: Shopify’s entire platform is designed specifically for online stores, offering a streamlined experience for store managers and users plus a host of powerful in-built features like Shopify email marketing, abandoned cart recovery and built-in analytics.
  • 24/7 merchant support: Every Shopify plan includes 24/7 support for when you have questions or need something fixed.
  • Seamless scaling: As your business grows, Shopify effortlessly scales with you, handling increased traffic and product volumes without a hitch.
  • App store to extend functionality: Extend Shopify’s functionality with thousands of apps in their app store, covering everything from marketing automation to loyalty programs. All apps need to meet Shopify’s strict quality controls, which ensures only high-quality apps make the cut.
  • Fast, performance-focused cloud hosting: Shopify websites use cloud hosting, which ensures optimal website loading speeds all over the world. Plus – there’s a team of expert developers monitoring and optimising Shopify’s cloud hosting and infrastructure 24/7. This is something you don’t get with a self-hosted WordPress website!
  • Innovation: What I adore about Shopify is that they are constantly improving the store management experience for merchants and users alike. Every 6 months, Shopify releases its Editions, which is jam packed with the latest updates, innovations and plans for the future of Shopify. It blows me away every time. This is the future of eCommerce and it’s incredible!

Ready to migrate your store to Shopify? Here’s your toolkit:

1. Planning & Preparation:

  • Take stock: Make a list of your products, customers, orders, and content you want to migrate.
  • Choose your method:
    • Manual migration: Ideal for small stores with basic needs. Export data from WooCommerce and import it into Shopify (CSV files) or manually copy content.
    • Migration apps: Third-party apps like LitExtension automate the process for a smoother experience (fees apply).
    • Hire a Shopify Partner: For complex stores or peace of mind, consider professional assistance.
  • Backup! Backup! Backup! Ensure you have a complete backup of your WordPress site before making any changes.

2. The Migration Process:

  • Products: Use your chosen method to import product data, including descriptions, images, and variants.
  • Customers: Migrate customer data (names, emails, order history) to maintain your customer base.
  • Content: Depending on your needs, migrate blog posts, pages, or other content using manual copy-paste or a migration app.
  • Theme & Design: Choose a Shopify theme that aligns with your brand and customize it to match your existing website’s feel (or use this as an opportunity to start fresh with a new, user-friendly and conversion-focused design).
  • Ecommerce: Connect to payment gateways, set up shipping rates, store policies and order notifications.
  • Marketing: Connect to your email marketing software, Google Analytics, Google Merchant Center and Meta accounts. Make sure to copy across any tracking codes or pixel data.

3. Post-Migration:

  • Test, test, test: Rigorously test your store’s functionality, checkout process, and mobile responsiveness before launch.
  • SEO: Ensure your SEO rankings don’t suffer by setting up proper 301 redirects from your old WordPress URLs to the new Shopify ones.
  • Go live – Point your domain to Shopify’s servers, which makes your new website live on Shopify.
  • Announce your new website! Let your customers know about your new, improved online store and celebrate the launch.

Remember: Migrating your store can be daunting, but with careful planning and the right tools, it can be a smooth and rewarding experience as you start to benefit from Shopify’s powerful eCommerce features and functionality and say goodbye to your stressful WordPress website.

Need help?

We’re Nutmeg. A Shopify design studio that helps artisan, creative and lifestyle brands around the world harness the power of Shopify so they can launch user-friendly and fuss-free online shops that convert.

Learn more about our Shopify eCommerce service here.

Hi - I'm Megan Hodson

I’m a Shopify + WordPress web designer with 16+ years communications, marketing and digital design experience, including working in eCommerce since 2010.

Our studio collaborates with brave-hearted small businesses around the world, helping them create beautifully-functional websites that convert.

We specialise in:

Shopify Stores: We help you plan and design stunning, user-friendly online shops that are easy to manage and scale alongside your business. Learn more.

Website Transformations: Is your website feeling outdated? We’ll work with you to create a fresh, modern space that reflects your brand and delivers a seamless user experience. Learn more.

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