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Shopify Optimization — When is The Time to Ditch That App?

By Rumen Dimitrov • 3 min read
The Shopify App Store is like a Candy Shop, but not every candy is good for you

There are plenty of apps on the Shopify App store. This gives you a lot of options for improving your site.

Many of the apps run on a subscription plan.

And this is good, too, because you are paying for the value you get and supporting the developers so you can continue getting the value.

But what happens when the value simply isn’t there for you?

I’ve recently reviewed a “Messenger list building” app for a client as part of a Shopify Store Optimization.

The app claimed that it can recover a high percentage of abandoned carts and create a list of people which you can later market to. All this via Facebook’s Messenger instead of email.

To prove their point the creators of the app provide a dashboard that shows how the app contributes to the revenue of your store.

My client was around 2 months into using it.

The first month was a free trial and the second he had to pay on a sliding scale, starting from $29/mo and going up the more visitors the app served.

Sadly, the stats were showing that he was getting no financial benefit of the app. It was working correctly, but produced no tangible benefit for the store.

Orders weren’t recovered because of its help, people weren’t looking at its messages.

Moreover, the app tried to double as an customer email automation service of the likes of Klavyo, Drip, Mailchimp, etc. Still the performance on that front wasn’t above 0, too.

After reviewing the performance of his Shopify store I saw that the scripts from this “Messenger marketing” app incurred a major page speed hit.

So, imagine that, not only he was getting no benefit from having the app, but he was paying for it and it was slowing down his website, thus hurting his conversions (shoppers don’t like laggy stores).

Don’t get me wrong — I’m not saying that the app doesn’t work as advertised. If it continues to exist, it is definitely bringing value to someone.

What I want to say is that not all top-rated apps are right for your exact niche — guys looking for mass-gain supplements don’t behave the same as ladies who like quilting.

All these apps may look promising, but you still have to measure their effectiveness in your specific case.

How to go about evaluating the apps you add to your store?

Most apps that add elements to the front-end (your site) will inevitably slow it down.

To have a successful store you don’t need to have dozens of them.

Keep just the app that can justify their existence by bringing you more money than what you are already spending on them… or loosing because of them.

Shopify Store App Management Rules of Thumb

  1. Avoid slow apps Measure the speed of your site before and after you’ve activated the app on your store. If the app slows it down, look for a speedier alternative. The slowdown will have an impact on your conversions.
  2. Avoid money pits If the app has proper revenue attribution you can see if it makes you money or not in a short period of time. • If you’ve got enough 1000+ visitors a day the value of an app will be obvious within less than a month. • If the app is not directly contributing to revenue, use a tool like HotJar to find out the way your visitors use it. Are they using it all? Are they confused by it?

Based on the above you can purge monthly the apps that bring you no money or don’t ease your sales/fulfillment process in any quantifiable way.

As you remove the apps you don’t need, don’t forget to keep an eye on the Shopify App Store. Alternative apps are popping up every day.

TLDR: If you haven’t touched an app for a long time, maybe it is time to evaluate it — is it doing more good than harm? Is it brining you more money that it is taking away?

If you’ve read this far, you’ll like my guide to discovering missed revenue opportunities on your Shopify store!

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    Rumen Dimitrov