It’s not uncommon for brands to believe that customers will come pouring in after they launch a killer online store with great products.
If you build it, they will come, right?
Unfortunately, that’s not always the case.
With so many businesses setting up shop online, creating buzz around the launch of your new store is not just good marketing, it’s vital for success.
When ecommerce businesses aren’t seeing the growth they want, that’s when the discounts start. The hope is that a sale will increase sales. But you can’t get more sales when you lack an audience.
The thing is, there are several avenues to take when figuring out how to generate buzz around your new brand or products.
One of our favorite ways to do this? A coming soon page on your website. These pages are a great way to tease your new brand or products and inspire some curiosity or anticipation.
In this article, we talk about how Shopify merchants can use coming soon pages to create excitement around your brand, so you have a group of hungry consumers ready to click “buy now” after you launch.
A coming soon page isn’t just a placeholder page with filler content. It’s a tool to help you build an early audience before launch.
You can use this page during the pre-launch period to build hype around your brand, build interest in what you have to offer, and even gauge the interest of your products with your audience.
Some of the most successful brands have taken this approach to launch ecommerce stores, products, and brands. Noah Kagan worked for months to build a pre-launch audience before Mint.com went live. When it launched, the company had over 20,000 people begging to use the product.
The Soma water filter was seeded through friends, family, and other personal connections before the product’s Kickstarter went live. It was successfully funded at over $147K.
Harry’s, a men’s grooming brand, gathered nearly 100,000 emails all starting with a coming soon page.
The peanut butter brand Saha took their audience-building tactics to the next level by setting a lofty goal to target the 37 million Americans who skip breakfast with their PBGO product. Saha used referral rewards after the initial signup to help grow its launch audience.
Their pre-launch campaign helped the company grab 20K signups with a 94% referral rate.
So, what does this mean for you?
With Shopify coming soon pages, there are tons of ways to create the perfect page to build customer interest around your launch. Your page can be customized to help you create a focal point for your pre-launch audience-building efforts. That way, when you’re ready to launch, you have an established list of interested potential customers.
When a new store is launched, Shopify populates the password page (the coming soon page) with basic information using a simple template. We’ll dive into best practices for customizing your coming soon page later in this article.
To create your coming soon page, log in to your Shopify admin dashboard. Then click on “Online Store” in the menu on the left-hand side, then click “Preferences."
Once the preferences window opens, scroll to the bottom. In the “password protection” section, you can enable the coming soon page by clicking “enable password." Then, you can customize the basic message your customers will see when they land on the password page.
Unfortunately, there isn’t much wiggle room to customize this page in the general settings. For more control over the appearance of the page, you’ll need to edit the template file for your password page. If you want to make customizations not available in the theme settings then you’ll want to edit the password.liquid template.
From your Shopify admin dashboard, go to “Online Store” and then click on “Themes.” In the “Themes” window, click the “Customize” button.
In this window, click on the down arrow in the top menu to select the “password page.” This will take you to the password page editor where you can adjust the header, footer, and body content on the page.
In the header section, you can add and resize your logo. In the footer section, you can include social icons and edit the social call to action (CTA) if you wish.
The content section provides a few more options to customize the headline, subheading, placeholder text, and the call to action.
Overall, this is still only going to get your Shopify Coming Soon page so far...so luckily there are even more options available to you.
Editor’s Note: The options depicted in the screenshots above are from Shopify’s default “Debut” theme. Other themes may have different customization options available for the password page.
Currently, with Shogun Page Builder, you can create a new Shopify landing page using elements from the Shogun Elements Library — with similar functionality to a traditional coming soon page — and set this as the homepage.
From here, you can customize the page, and embed a third-party email form, like from Klayvio, to collect emails from interested customers. This helps your coming soon page become even more customizable and useful as you can build it your way (vs. relying on the default).
However, there are a few limitations to this approach:
Editor's Note: We’re constantly working on improving Shogun Page Builder, so stay tuned for updates as we roll them out!
Many Shogun customers choose to create their own Shogun-built landing page in place of the Shopify coming soon page because of the limitations on customization we mentioned above.
Instead of putting up a cookie-cutter coming soon page, make it your own. Here are just some of the things you can do with Shogun Page Builder elements:
The customization possibilities are endless 💡
#cta-mini-pb#Build anticipation with a totally customized Shopify coming soon page. Start your free trial
Shopify provides a very simple coming soon page with basic formatting when you create your first store. This basic design includes a password lock to prevent anyone from accessing your store while you build it. You can share this password with those involved in the development and UI/UX testing.
Remember, if you’re using Shopify’s free trial, the coming soon page will be enabled by default. This page can’t be disabled until you choose a Shopify plan.
So how can you create an engaging coming soon page that sparks customer interest? Let’s look at three best practices for doing so.
The first step in creating a buzz around the launch of your new ecommerce website, products, or brand is to capture their attention. How? Tell them what you’re all about with an eye-catching headline.
The headline is a core component of your coming soon page, just as it is on other ecommerce landing pages. It paints a quick picture of what you have to offer.
Shopidex uses the headline to effectively communicate its value proposition and build excitement for what they have in store. It’s a lot more impactful than a simple “coming soon” message.
Remember, your customers are skimming the page from the moment they land on it. You only have a few seconds to make an impression and capture their attention, so keep your copy brief. However, make sure you don’t skimp on the details!
Include a few sentences to emphasize what’s coming, and what they’ll get when they sign up. This is a great space to include a countdown clock showing the date your store will launch.
If you’re including an incentive for signing up, you can use this space to create a sense of urgency if the incentive will disappear on or before your store’s launch.
Your coming soon page should have a clear and easy-to-spot call to action that stands out from the rest of the copy. The goal with your call-to-action is to make it clear what you want customers to do before they leave the page.
If you want to include social share buttons (Shopify includes these by default), make sure they aren’t going to outshine your main call to action. We recommend using large, bold fonts and a contrasting color for the CTA button, like this one on the Spotify Car Thing coming soon page.
Audience building is a key part of launching. Generating excitement around your launch — no matter if you’re revealing a new product line, ecommerce experience, or a new business idea — will help you hit the ground running post-launch.
By customizing your Shopify Coming Soon page you can start building interest well before your store goes live.
This way, once the store is ready to launch, you’ll have a sizable list of prospective customers who are interested and ready to buy. You’ll have a much larger starting audience, a greater referral potential, and a much higher conversion rate as your audience grows.
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Derek is the founder of Thunder Bay Media and lover of everything related to content writing and copywriting. He has 15+ years of copywriting, content writing, and digital marketing experience and is a featured guest blogger published by more than 30 marketing publications.