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The Ultimate Shopify Apps Buyer’s Guide

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Aleksandra -
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Chief of Content Marketing
Aleksandra teaches marketing and management at various levels in High School. She writes about marketing, the economics and logistics of the dropshipping business and ecommerce in general.
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Chief of Content Marketing
7 minutes

Third-party apps are a huge part of Shopify’s ecosystem. They help sellers drive millions of extra dollars in sales.

When you look at some of the most incredible Shopify statistics, you’ll find out that there are over 6000 unique apps on their app store, which is why learning how to choose a Shopify app effectively is crucial.

In addition, the total number of apps installed across all Shopify stores is over 25.8 million till 2024.

As a result, you can rest assured knowing that third-party apps are a must-have in order to grow and improve countless aspects of your store.

Now, only one question remains, how to ensure that you’ve made the best possible choice?

Well, all of that will be made clear in this Shopify apps buyer’s guide.

You’ll learn what criteria to look for and what to always avoid. Don’t worry, as choosing Shopify apps for your store is super simple and easy.

So, let’s dive in!


How to Choose a Shopify App Effectively

shopify buyers guide

Before we get into it, let me first clarify a few things about Shopify apps. 

  • The most popular apps on the Shopify app store aren’t always the best.
  • The ones with the best reviews don’t mean they’ll be perfect for your one product store.
  • At the start, you are almost always better off with free apps. (paid ones are for scaling)

If some of this doesn’t make sense, don’t worry, all will be made clear soon.

The reason why I’m sharing this before we start is so you know that it takes a bit more work to find the best Shopify apps than just looking at the most popular ones.

Having said that, let’s have a look at exactly how to choose a Shopify app that will always suit your store best.


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1. Make a List of What You Need for Your Store

how to choose shopify apps

The first step is to make a list of what you want to add to your store. Forget the Shopify app store, for now, don’t even open it for this step. 

Don’t worry, as chances are almost 100% that there’s going to be an app that provides the features you’ll be looking for.

So, take your notepad, open your Shopify store, and start writing bullet points.

They should describe the features that you want to add to your online store in order to double your conversions, collect leads, decrease website load time, and everything in between.

This is a simple example of what it should look like:

  • Add upsells and increase my conversion rate.
  • Collect emails to use for my email marketing campaign later.
  • Countdown timer on my product pages.
  • I want a pop-up message to appear before someone tries to exit my online store.

Keep in mind, this list can include anything that leads towards you making more money from your Shopify store.

So, be realistic, include goals that make sense, and fill up your list with only the most important ones first.

👉 Check out the Best 9 Shopify Sales Tracker Tools For Your Online Store.

2. Browse the Shopify App Store and Shortlist Apps

Next, you want to dive into the Shopify app store and see what type of fish there are in the water. In other words, browse around and see what apps you can find. 

However, now you know what you’re looking for given that you’ve listed down your needs on your notepad as mentioned previously.

So, there are a few ways to do this next step. 

Use the Search Bar

The first one is to type a keyword such as “upsell”, or “email marketing” in the search bar. By doing so, all the apps that provide that service or feature will appear.

Search by Category

The second way can actually be even handier. You basically have to click on Categories in the top corner of the Shopify app store and select the category in which you think your desired app is. 

For example: Let’s say you want to find an app that lists upsells on your product page. Well, you click on Categories > Conversion > Upselling and cross-selling.

shopify apps categories

This will lead you to a new page where you have all the available Shopify apps that offer upsells or cross-selling benefits.

Browse the Collections

Lastly, you can also check out the specially-curated collections by Shopify that list apps based on a few different criteria.

This can include apps that are specifically for growing your business, apps for sales channels, Shopify affiliate marketing apps, apps for launching your store, and much more.

BONUS: Check our extended list of the best marketing apps on Shopify.

What we recommend is that you use the search bar and type in the most relevant keyword about the app you want to install.

3. Consider These 3 Crucial Factors and Decide

So, now that you have a full page of related Shopify tools in front of you, how do you actually pick the best one?

It’s actually quite simple, and by following these three requirements you will always be left with the best choice.


As you may already know, reviews are crucial. But wait, before you start writing down which apps have the most 5-star reviews, there’s something you need to hear first. 

It’s not always about having top-rated reviews. Sure, more satisfied customers are great but you need to read the reviews. You need to see what others are saying about the usability of the app.

Maybe every single review is 5 stars but there’s one crucial feature that the app doesn’t provide for your store specifically.

As a result, read as many reviews as you can and see how others are describing the app.


Alright, let’s get this one out of the way. I know it’s probably not your favorite part. However, it’s important to consider it. 

At first, when you’re starting your store, if you don’t have a lot of extra cash, it’s OKAY to use free Shopify apps. In fact, it’s better. 

Most free apps offer the same features as paid ones, just with some types of limits.

For example, an email marketing app will allow you to send fully customized emails but the limit will be 100 per month.

Then, when you start earning money from your store and collecting more leads, you can pay to use a premium version of the app and scale up.

App Description

There shouldn’t be a reason to mention this at all but so many sellers often don’t even read the description about the apps.

They look at a few images, watch the explainer video, and either skip it or just decide to install it. 

You must read every single word there is in the app description. Every. Single. Word!

Only then will you be able to finally see whether this particular app will have what you’re looking for. Don’t skip any of these steps. It won’t take you a lot of time at all, so there’s no point in rushing the process.


Wrapping up

Hopefully, now you can have a much easier time when it comes to deciding how to choose a Shopify app and be sure that you aren’t making a mistake.

There are thousands of apps in their store, and these steps can help you simplify the entire process and save a lot of time.

About the Author

Profile picture of Aleksandra
Aleksandra Miteva
Aleksandra teaches marketing and management at various levels in High School. She writes about marketing, the economics and logistics of the dropshipping business and ecommerce in general.
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