When (and How) Should I Update my Shopify theme?

by
Ivan Kadic
January 19, 2023
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5 min read
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Just like the clothes in your closet, the design of your Shopify store goes out of style. However, unlike fashion trends, website design trends move a lot faster. What might have looked fresh and modern 6 months ago could now look dated and unprofessional.

But how do you know when to update your Shopify theme? Keep reading to find out. 

Check Your Google Analytics Data

One of the first things to check when trying to determine if your Shopify theme is due for an update is your Google Analytics data. If you see that your bounce rate has been increasing or that users are spending less time on your site than they used to, that's a sign that your website design might be confusing or unattractive. Use Google Analytics to take a closer look at your user data and see if there are any other factors that could be affecting your website traffic. 

Compare Your Site to Your Competitors' Sites

Another way to tell if it's time for a Shopify theme update is to compare your site to your competitors' sites. Take a look at 3-5 other websites in your industry and pay attention to their designs. If you notice that their sites are more modern or easier to use than yours, it might be time for you to make some changes. Of course, you don't want to blindly copy what everyone else is doing—that's not how you stay ahead of the competition. But, taking inspiration from other successful websites is a great way to check if yours is keeping up with trends.

Examine How Your Site Looks on Mobile Devices 

It's important to make sure that your Shopify theme looks good on both desktop and mobile devices. As more people are using smartphones and tablets to shop online, it's crucial that your site is optimized for smaller screens. 

Open up your website on a few different devices and see how it looks. If it's hard to navigate or if the text is too small, those are both signs that it's time for a Shopify theme update. 

Keep in mind that people shop differently on mobile devices than they do on desktop computers. So, even if your current theme looks good on mobile, there might still be ways to improve the mobile shopping experience for your customers. 

For example, if you have a lot of products on your site, you might want to consider adding filters so customers can easily find what they're looking for on mobile. Or, if you have a complex checkout process, streamlining it, so it's easier for mobile users to complete could make a big difference in conversion rates.

Listen to Your Customers' Feedback 

Another way to tell if it’s time for a Shopify theme update is by listening to feedback from your customers. If you’re getting a lot of comments or complaints about how difficult it is to navigate your site or find certain products, those are both signs that something needs to change. Of course, not all customer feedback should be taken at face value—sometimes people just like complaining!—but if you notice patterns in the feedback you’re receiving, those are worth paying attention to. 

Check this article to find out how to update your Shopify theme without losing any of your content.

How Often Should I Update my Shopify Theme?

How often you need to update your Shopify theme will depend on a few factors, such as the type of business you have, the frequency of new product releases, and how often trends change in your industry. That said, a good rule of thumb is to update your theme at least once a year. This will give you ample opportunity to make any necessary changes and ensure that your site is running smoothly. 

How to Prepare for a Shopify Theme Update? 

When updating your Shopify theme, there are a few things you'll want to keep in mind. First, be sure to create a backup of your current theme before making any changes. This way, if something goes wrong, you can always revert back to your original theme. 

Second, take some time to review the changes you want to make before implementing them. 

Once you've made your changes, be sure to test them thoroughly before making your new theme live. Nothing is worse than releasing an update only to find out that it's full of bugs! 

Why Update my Shopify Theme?

There are a few reasons why you should keep your Shopify theme up-to-date: 

  1. Newer themes tend to be faster and more responsive than older themes. This can help improve both your website's speed and search engine ranking. 
  2. Updating to a newer theme can help freshen up your store's look and feel, making it more appealing to customers. 
  3. As new features are added to Shopify (such as checkout enhancements or adding sections), older themes may not be compatible with these new features. 

Updating to a newer theme can help you take advantage of the latest and greatest that Shopify has to offer.

Wrapping up

Use these tips as guidelines but ultimately trust your gut—if something feels outdated or unprofessional, chances are it is.

Updating the design of your Shopify store can be daunting, but it’s worth it in terms of increased traffic and conversions. A modern, sleek design will give customers confidence in your brand and make them more likely to buy from you. Plus, updating your theme doesn’t have to be expensive or time-consuming; there are plenty of great themes available for purchase that won’t break the bank. 

Having trouble finding a Shopify theme? Check our directory of 130+ themes with reviews from other Shopify store owners. Read their experiences and pick the best for your business. 

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