I've been asked if you need a credit or debit card to start selling on Shopify.
Well, there's different situations where you'll need a credit card to set up an online store.
The first one is you need to make payments to Shopify every month to keep your store open online. Shopify charge you $29 every month to allow you to use their services and features to keep your store open.
When you first set up your Shopify store you'll get a 14-day free trial. During those 14 days your store is online, you can send social media and search traffic to your store, and make sales all while not making any payment to Shopify.
The two weeks are a test period so when you set up your website you don't need to enter any credit card details into Shopify. Therefore in theory you can start a store without a credit/debit card and if you haven't made any sales when the 14 day trial is over, or you don't think your niche will work, you can simply close the site down - having never paid any money to Shopify!
If those two weeks are over and you've had success, you're obviously going to want to keep your online store alive and open. To do this you'll need to enter card payment details into Shopify to allow them to withdraw $29 dollars from your account each month.
So in the short term you don't need a credit card to get started Shopify but in the long term you will eventually need to enter card details in Shopify to be able to use their platform.
You also need to setup a payment gateway to take payments from your customers. I'm using their payment gateway called Shopify Payments which allows visitors to pay for items using their credit cards on my store.
When you set up a payment gateway like Shopify Payments or Stripe, you need to enter your banking details so that when a customer pays you the payment goes directly into your bank account. You will need a credit/debit card or a bank account to receive payments that your customers make to your store.
You may you be able to get away with not having to enter bank details to receive payments from customers if you can setup manual payments through Shopify. This is where you basically give your customers instructions on how to pay you using alternatives method to what Shopify provides. You could for example:
- Ask your customer makes a bank deposit straight to your bank account
- Request that you receive cash on delivery (once you deliver the product your customer pays you)
Manual payments can avoid having to use a credit card but being able to pay with credit card on a webstore is what your customers will expect. If you don't offer this a lot of people are likely to get turned off from buying on your store.
So in summary get yourself a Shopify store setup with a free two week trial and then use that time to test if your store is going to work. If it does then start paying the $29 to Shopify and if not you may want to shut it down and open a new store to try something else.
All questions are welcome to please leave me a comment or share your opinion and I'll try to answer back quickly. Feel free to copy any of my methods to make Shopify work for you.