Introducing Stiletto - the essential Shopify theme to fuel your ecommerce growth. Learn more.

2. Common mistakes when getting started

This article outlines a few common mistakes merchants sometimes make when they're first setting up Stiletto, so you can learn from them rather than repeat them.

Here are the top four common mistakes to watch out for:

Too many home page sections

While Stiletto comes with a huge variety of options for configuring your home page, merchants often seem a little too keen to make use all of them. Your customers typically rely on your navigation to discover your products and learn more about your store — so you shouldn't feel too much pressure to display all your products and store content upfront.

Instead, think of the home page as a way to offer a snapshot of your store and brand and highlight new or featured products and collections. Using the homepage Sections sparingly, make a statement with some crisp editorial photography, establish your credibility with succinct written content, showcase a small selection of products that you think represent you, and then stop.

Too many block elements

Stiletto has been designed with two categories of Sections in mind: full-width sections (such as the Slideshow) and block sections (such as the featured product section, the featured blog section etc.). Stacking too many of one type of Section can create visual fatigue.

We recommend having at most three block elements before a full-width section. Think of the full-width sections as refreshing the eyes of your visitor after each section of blocks: too many block elements in a row and you're going to get a sense that instead of having a neatly designed website, you have a collection of boxes (too much structure). Too many full-width elements and you will lose any sense of structure at all. Balance the two to create a visual rhythm.

If you do have multiple block sections in a row, consider using Stiletto's Contrast style option to add some subtle contrast to ease the flow and create some balance.

Too many unnecessary apps

There are a lot of great apps out there that can expand what your store can do. However, it's not always clear to merchants how apps are related to themes and how they work. To help avoid any surprises or headaches, we want to outline a few things to consider.

The number one thing to know is that our support policy does not cover app setup or any issues caused by apps. Simply put, there's over three thousand apps on the app store that go through a different vetting process than themes, so compatibility between apps and themes, and any bugs that may result, are the responsibility of app developers.

Another factor to weigh is that apps can affect the performance of your site and slow it down and some apps will add code directly into your theme file, which stays there even if you uninstall the app and this may cause problems. They can even break part of your theme functionality.

Here are a few questions you can ask when making a decision about whether to use a particular app:

  • Does it add value to the user experience and benefit your customers?
  • Does that value outweigh the tradeoff of a slower page speed, for example?
  • Do the reviews highlight any common problems?
  • Does the app have good documentation and provide active support if something goes wrong?

When setting up your store, the footer might be the last thing on your list, but customers often look there first when they want to learn more about your store, your policies, and how to keep in touch. We might think of the footer as a kind of info desk that helps establish your credibility and keeps customers shopping.

If the footer is left incomplete, it can make your site look unfinished, which is enough by itself to make customers second-guess shopping at your store. It's the details that matter when it comes to putting together a store that customers can trust.

With Stiletto, you can add three different types of blocks — link lists, a text block, and a newsletter — and up to four blocks in total. Add link lists to share info about your store and policies or let your customers jump back into your collections to continue shopping. To finish things off, we highly recommend adding a newsletter sign-up and setting up your social media links to display as icons. You can add a short tagline with a text block.

For more details, see our article about how to set up the footer.

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