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How to Automatically Discontinue Products on Shopify
Last modified: December 7, 2023
Products don’t last forever, and sometimes you need to discontinue products or ensure that they’re not put on sale for a period of time. For instance, products might be only available for a certain time during the year such a ticket sales, seasonal licenses, etc. Or you might have seasonal products that you only want to sell in the run-up to a holiday/event to get the best value for the product (e.g. Christmas).
Managing this stock manually can be done with ease if you have a small enough store with fewer SKUs. However, it isn’t always possible. Instead, you might want to make the process automatic. That is, you will automatically remove a product from your store (discontinue) when the product is no longer available for sale.
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The Benefits of Automatically Discontinuing Products on Shopify
There are numerous benefits to making the process automatic. For one, it keeps your website relevant and fresh, allowing you to improve the trust and aesthetics of your website. It would look rather poor if customers saw Christmas jumpers on your store in April.
It’s also more time-efficient for you to have the process automatic. This will allow you to spend more time marketing your website instead of maintaining it. Therefore, you can grow your audience better and faster.
This option can also prevent you from having to take queries from customers who might want a discount because a product is now out of season. Whereas if the product was in season, they would be happy to pay full price.
How to Automatically Hide Products on Shopify
If you’re looking to automatically hide products on Shopify, then the best option is to use an app on your website. There are numerous options that are available, however, one of the top apps for this task is Auto Hide, Auto Publish. This app allows you to set a date/time when products can be hidden and published to ensure that you are only showing products that are available at the set date/time that you want to sell them.
This can be very beneficial as it prevents you from accidentally leaving a product available and the low cost allows you to put your time to better use. The app will also hide products if they get below a specific stock threshold that you specify to your customers, therefore, it has a wide range of functions to help you keep customers happy when they’re making orders on your website.
Strategies for Discontinued Products on Shopify
SEO Considerations for Discontinued Products
When discontinuing products, it’s crucial to consider the SEO impact. Deleting product pages can lead to lost search rankings and broken links. Instead, mark products as out-of-stock and redirect URLs to relevant pages.
This approach maintains SEO value and guides customers to alternative products.
Utilizing Out-of-Stock Notifications
Instead of hiding out-of-stock items, leverage them for customer engagement. Implementing back-in-stock notifications can convert potential losses into future sales.
This strategy keeps customers informed and encourages return visits to your store when products are available again.
Automated Collection Rules for Inventory Management
Automate the visibility of products based on stock levels using Shopify’s collection rules. This method ensures only in-stock items are displayed, reducing manual effort and improving the shopping experience.
It’s a seamless way to manage product availability without affecting customer trust.
Managing Discontinued Products on Shopify
Creating a Discontinued Collection
For products that are permanently discontinued, consider creating a ‘Discontinued’ collection.
This archive can showcase the types of products you’ve offered, serving as a historical catalog and potentially attracting customer interest in similar current products.
Handling Out-of-Stock Products
For out-of-stock products, clearly communicate their status to avoid customer frustration. Use clear messaging and consider offering alternatives or the option to be notified when the product is back in stock.
This approach maintains a positive user experience and keeps customers engaged.
Strategic Product Visibility
Decide strategically which products to hide or keep visible. For temporarily unavailable items, consider keeping them visible with an out-of-stock status.
For permanently discontinued items, redirect their URLs to similar products or categories to retain SEO benefits and guide customers to available options.
Conclusion: How to Automatically Discontinue Products on Shopify
When you want to automatically discontinue or hide products on Shopify, there is only one option, using an app. Apps can help save you time, ensure accuracy and can even help you get the product back on the store when it is time to sell it again if you so wish. Use the app recommended above to get the task started.
Can discontinued products still appear in search results on my Shopify store?
Discontinued products can appear in search results if they are not properly removed or hidden. It’s important to update your store’s search settings to prevent discontinued items from showing, ensuring accurate search results for customers.
How can I analyze the impact of discontinued products on my Shopify store’s performance?
Analyze the impact by tracking sales data and customer feedback before and after discontinuation. Use analytics tools to assess changes in sales patterns and customer engagement, helping you make informed decisions about product management.
Can I automate the restocking of discontinued products on Shopify?
Automating restocking for discontinued products is possible if they are temporarily out of stock. Use inventory management tools to monitor stock levels and automatically update product availability on your Shopify store.