1.The Theme Store provides free updates to your theme
If you purchased your theme from the Theme Store, you could update your theme for free; this is a perk that is not common to all theme providers. However, due to customizations, these updates are not automatic, and you do have to request it.
2.Updating your theme will lose all customizations if not transferred over beforehand
Before you update your theme, be sure to factor in the time to re-customize everything. You will lose your customizations made to Liquidfiles, CSS files, theme settings and preferences, colors, fonts, social media links, etc. You should take the time to keep a written record of all customizations to your current theme before you proceed with an update. At Carson, we can take care of making the theme upgrade and assuring that you won’t lose all the hard work that you put into making your store look exactly like you want.
3.Theme Store licenses are one-time purchases, licensed to only one account
This means that if you bought a theme from the Theme Store, it is not interchangeable with multiple accounts. If you have another Shopify account, you must re-purchase the theme.
4.You will likely be dependent on your theme provider
Developers generally do not like to touch or alter other developers’ code. If you’re going to update your theme, you’ll likely have to use the same developer, or pay a premium on principal as well as the time and work the new developer requires learning someone else’s code before even updating it. When you buy a Shopify theme, the theme provider is expected to provide lifetime support for questions you may have about the theme you purchased. However, it is very basic 5-10 minute support, and unlike Carson, they can only offer very basic support about your purchase.
5.Consider your competition
Before rebuilding your whole theme just for the sake of updating, interact with your competition’s sites. Figure out what you like and what works, what you don’t want, and how to differentiate yourself.
6.Consider your customer's’ opinion
The main reason you’re updating your Shopify theme is to drive more sales. The best way to encourage this is to go straight to your consumers and ask their opinion on your site. You can run a quick survey campaign on site or by email. In addition to this, there are review apps (Yotpo Reviews, Product Reviews by Shopify), live chat apps (Tidio Live Chat, Userlike) surveys apps (Survey, Poll) and social media apps (Instagram shop by Snapppt, Twitter Feed by POWr.Io).
7.Professional photography can greatly enhance your theme
If you’re now reluctant to update your theme, investing in new professional photography may be just what your site needs. Great photos will not only drive conversion rates, but they are both essential and crucial to your brand. If you are going to update your theme, it’s an excellent opportunity to invest in new professional photographs as well, and do a complete makeover. You can find a great article about how to shoot your products for your Shopify store guest written by Holly Cardew from @pixcphotos here
8.Document before and after analytics
You are updating your theme to increase sales and brand recognition, so after all the work you’re investing to do so, don’t let it go to waste. Make sure to document your analytics such as new visits vs. returning visitors, page views per visit, average order amount, etc., and compare it to your upgraded version.
Upgrading your theme may seem like a quick and easy automated task, but there is a lot of work and consideration that needs to be invested in the project. Always make sure you have the time and money to do it properly, and consider how necessary an upgrade is at the given time. Exhaust all resources such as surveying customers, analyzing your competition, and thoroughly evaluating your theme before deciding to update your Shopify theme.