Back in 2006, Tobias Lütke and Scott Lake launched Shopify. This online commerce platform is designed to help you start a business, manage it, and grow it all in one place. Since 2006 it has come a long way and you can now use it to create your own online stores as well.
In fact, more than 1.7 million businesses around the world use Shopify to sell their products or services online. Some customers will visit the site to make an online purchase. However, a lot of customers will place repeat orders with their favorite brands using subscriptions.
If people have subscribed to your business using Shopify then staying on top of these subscriptions is vital to ensure customer satisfaction. This is where using a Shopify subscription app can make things much easier.
So what do these do and how do you pick the best app available? Read on to find out everything you need to know about how to choose a Shopify subscription app.
What is a Shopify Subscription App?
Subscriptions on Shopify make it easy for your customers to place recurring orders easily with you. To make this easy to manage, there are a number of Shopify subscription apps available.
These apps help you set up weekly, monthly, or annual customer subscriptions. You can even use them to set up subscriptions for specific dates each year. So if someone wants to place a recurring order around an anniversary, for example, they can.
These apps store vital information about the subscription frequency, customer details, and product information. This means that you can always deliver the products and services your customers are looking for perfectly on time. They can also provide useful metrics to track patterns in customer subscriptions, which are useful for your marketing strategy.
Who Should Use a Shopify Subscription App?
Subscriptions are helpful for anyone selling products or services on Shopify. You may only offer these services via a subscription, in a similar way to online streaming services.
Or you might like to offer your customers subscription incentives. For example, you might want to offer them a discount if they sign up for an annual subscription.
In that case, you’ll want to have all of the information about these subscriptions stored securely. So installing the best subscription app for Shopify is essential.
Why Are Subscription Models Important?
As we’ve already mentioned, subscription apps are a helpful way of storing your customer subscription information. However, there are also some significant advantages to using them. Let’s take a look at some of these.
1. Subscription Apps Improve Customer Retention
If you want your business to be successful then securing long-term customer loyalty is essential. However, with more businesses competing in the market than ever before this can be difficult.
Subscription models are the perfect way to ensure that your customers keep coming back for your products. After all, once they’re set up, a customer will have to spend more time canceling their subscription than keeping it going! This seriously boosts your customer retention.
2. They Help Your Business Be More Consistent
In business, planning is key, and knowing your monthly projections can help you calculate losses or profits in advance. This ensures that you keep your inventory in proportion to demand and don’t waste money.
With subscriptions, you can be certain that a set amount of trade will be coming your way each month or year.
3. They Are Simple and User-Friendly
Subscriptions also make your customers’ lives easier, which improves their overall experience of your business. It can help them place orders quickly and plan their budgeting.
Customers that are happy will be much more likely to keep using your business. Better yet, they’ll recommend it to their friends and family and bring new customers in!
Understanding the Different Type of Shopify Subscription Apps
If you are thinking of using subscriptions for your business, then understanding different types of subscription models is important.
This will help you find the right model for your business. The app you need depends on the type of products or services that you are selling.
1. Replenishment Subscription Apps
Replenishment subscription models are all about saving your customers time on regular purchases. They essentially replenish them automatically. This is a common type of subscription for food and grocery supplies.
These models make it easy for customers to customize the items that they want. Or they might have default items put in place if they forget to customize their orders. These are popular for weekly or monthly subscriptions that deliver goods regularly.
2. Curation Subscription Apps
Curation subscriptions are all about tailoring your goods to your customers’ specified needs. However, your customers do not choose exact items.
For example, fashion brands, such as StichFix, offer boxes of “surprise” clothes on a monthly basis to suit an individual’s fashion preferences. Or you might have signed up for a monthly wine delivery and specified the types of grape that you want to try.
So your customers have an element of choice but you make the final decision on what suits their preferences best of all.
3. Membership Subscription Apps
Membership models mean that customers can only access products or services if they subscribe. This is very popular with online streaming platforms, such as Netflix, Spotify, and Hulu.
A lot of membership subscriptions are charged on a monthly basis, as most customers find a small monthly payment more appealing.
Choosing the right app to suit your business is essential. So let’s take a look at some of the things that you should look for in a Shopify subscription app.
Features to Suit Your Business
Last year the top 100 subscription apps available on the App Store generated $10.3 billion! But before you hand over money for a subscription management app, it’s important to identify the features that you’re looking for.
As well as helping you store data and set up customer subscriptions, the most popular subscription apps on Shopify help you grow your subscription base. They do this by providing useful metrics on:
- Your active daily and monthly users
- The number of subscribers you have and the number of active subscriptions in use
- The average length of subscriptions to your services
- Your churn rate (which relates to the number of customers who choose to unsubscribe from your business)
This can help you figure out how to get more subscriptions on Shopify by targeting the right customers.
Other app features can help you with financial forecasting and spending. For example, some apps offer a projection of your monthly recurring revenue (MRR) or annual recurring revenue (ARR). This is based on the number of active subscriptions that you have and patterns in the length of subscriptions.
Lifetime value and cost per acquisition metrics can help you identify exactly how much it is costing you to bring new customers in. So you can assess whether or not your marketing strategies are cost-effective.
A Budget to Work for You
When looking for a subscription management app, it’s important to keep your budget in mind.
After all, you want to find an app that you will be able to set up and keep using for the foreseeable future. So forking out for an expensive app that you have to ditch after a couple of months won’t be worth it.
It’s worth noting that some subscription apps charge a transaction fee for processing customer payments. If you’re working with a tighter budget then it is a good idea to avoid these.
Some apps may offer different packages at different prices. For example, a basic package will be cheaper than one offering the full range of metric features.
If you aren’t sure about your budget these are a great option. You can always start on a cheaper package and upgrade in the future. Or, if you do have to downgrade, then at least the bulk of your information will still be saved in the app so you won’t have to start from scratch.
An Easy Interface
In order to get the most out of your subscription app, you need to be able to navigate it easily. This is where the design and interface of the app make a big difference.
A subscription app does not need to be overly complicated. If you have a lot of services or products on offer, these should be organized logically and in a way that makes them simple for your customers to find.
A lot of subscription apps give you the opportunity to customize your design to make navigation simple, which is very handy.
As the business owner, you want the information you need to also be readily available and easily accessible as well. That way you won’t waste time trawling through the app looking for the subscription information that you need.
Great Customer Service Support
Setting up your subscription app can make a huge difference in how easy it is to navigate. If you aren’t very tech-savvy then it’s important to look for an app that offers great customer service support.
In fact, this is essential even when your app is up and running.
If something goes wrong with your app then you need to resolve it as quickly as possible. In that case, you’ll need to get in touch with a customer support agent.
Ideally, you want to find an app that offers 24/7 customer support. You should be able to contact this support in a number of ways such as:
- Over the phone
- Via email
- Via an online chatbot
- Using an online portal for reporting issues
A lot of apps also offer automatic troubleshooting information so that you can look up tips on resolving issues quickly. It’s a good idea to look out for these when searching for an app. That way you can be sure that if a problem arises your app will be back online in no time at all.
One of the best ways to find out everything you need to know about Shopify subscription apps is to check out reviews of them. These will tell you all about the experiences that real businesses have had using them.
You can use them to learn more about key features that you might be looking for and to spot any red flags.
When searching for reviews, make sure you look at independent sources, such as app store or Google reviews. That way you know that the app developer isn’t just pushing good press!
It’s also a good idea to look for recent views, as app developers are constantly updating and improving the features that they offer. So recent reviews will tell you the most about how good an app is at the moment. Reviews from more than two years ago will probably be out of date.
If you have the time, it is also worth checking out the companies that have left useful reviews. As we’ve already mentioned, different apps will work better for certain types of businesses. So you want to find a review from a company that provides similar services or products to your own.
Alternatively, you can look at which apps your competitors use. This can be a helpful starting point for your research.
Using the Bold Subscription App
Bold Subscription is an app that lets you launch a world-class subscription service. There’s an impressive 60-day free trial that you can use to get a feel for how it works. Bold allows you to set up a subscription program in just a few minutes. Its out-of-the-box features are intuitive and easy to use.
Bold makes managing your subscription service a total breeze. The subscription portal is flawless and effortless for customers to use. There are self-manageable delivery intervals, payments, orders, and more.
Now you can control every aspect of your subscriptions in one convenient location. You can also decrease churn and boost LTV through its automatic dunning management.
Its core features include:
- Seamlessly integrates with Shopify Checkout
- Easily add subscribe options and save options with a few clicks
- 100% customizable
- Works flawlessly with Shopify discount codes
- User-friendly dashboard
- Powerful APIs, developer tools, and webhooks
- Automated email updates to improve customer relations
- The ability to offer one-time purchases and subscriptions in the same transaction
- Much more
As you can see, the Bold Subscription app has a ton of valuable features. If you plan on starting a subscription service, then this app is a must-download for you. To get started with the Bold subscriptions app visit this link.
Tips and Tricks for Choosing the Best Shopify Subscription App ( quick video )
Find the Perfect Shopify Subscription App for Your Store Today
As you can see, when it comes to choosing a Shopify subscription app for your business, there are plenty of things to consider. Keeping these in mind will ensure that you find the perfect app to manage your business’ subscriptions perfectly.
Want to find out more about how to make the most of your Shopify store? Then check out our latest blog on optimizing your store ranking right now!
For more great content to help you develop your Shopify strategies, check out the rest of the merchant posts on the site. If you want to see a list of our top recommended Shopify apps visit this link here.