Informing Customers with an Announcement Bar

Shopify Staff (Retired)



They say that small changes can make a big difference. When it comes to your online store, the same idea applies. How can you make a big impact with simple updates to your storefront?


It doesn’t always take a new pop up application or an extensive call to action to convert more sales. More often than not, it’s the small adjustments to your theme that will appeal to new customers and flag a returning client to investigate further. 


Let’s explore the most effective update you can apply to your theme that will certainly make a big difference long term. 


Communication is Key


When a visitor lands on your homepage, whether it be the first or 100th time, they will be looking for a reason to click through your store. 


Naturally, a person’s attention will be drawn upwards. The unconscious habit of a buyer is to notice the branding of your store first to determine if it appeals to them. As their gaze scans through the branded elements of the header, the potential customer will take note of the first piece of information they land on - preferably one that doesn’t require scrolling. This is why the announcement bar is so important. The announcement bar tends to be under utilized as merchants often wish to share key information by making a big statement. 


Merchants opt to create a large section of information coupled with a product image. This tactic likely requires scrolling through the homepage. That behavior is not guaranteed if the visitor is not compelled to do so by their first glance at your store. 


Using the announcement bar to provide exciting and concise information will provide the visitor with interesting facts about your business without much effort.




What should you include in the announcement bar?


There are two effective pieces of information to include in your announcement bar:


  1. Free Shipping Conditions: It’s common for any store to have a condition set for free shipping. Whether the customer must spend a certain amount to obtain free shipping or that free shipping applies to all orders, this persuades a customer to purchase from your store. Without utilizing the announcement bar for this information, this context will go unnoticed until checkout. It’s best to include it as a first call to action and the announcement bar is the way to do it.
  2. Discount Codes: Promotional discount codes are a great marketing tool for upsells and conversion. The natural positioning for this information is in the announcement bar. Other sections on your homepage are designed for bulkier texts and attention grabbing images. A discount code is short, concise and best displayed in a minimal statement. This is exactly what the announcement bar was designed for. 


Always consider updating the information 


It will be important to keep your announcement bar regularly updated for returning customers and visitors. Perhaps the free shipping announcement did not encourage a visitor to purchase a few weeks ago but a discount code might do the trick if they check-in again. 


The announcement bar is in direct view when landing on your storefront. With more and more shoppers making purchases through their mobile devices, having an announcement bar will be more important than ever to avoid scrolling. Therefore, updating the information on a weekly or bi-weekly basis may just make the difference for an uncertain visitor or returning customer. 


Updating the announcement bar is also a great marketing tactic to share new sales or promotions. It’s a simple strategy to apply seasonal updates throughout the year. Whenever you have a mother’s day discount, or a semi-annual sale, or a BFCM promotion, including it in your announcement bar will generate interest and grab the attention of any returning visitor. 


Designing the announcement bar


Every theme will have different features and settings for the announcement bar design. However, two important points to consider are colors and links which can be found in Online Store > Themes > Customize > Announcement bar:


  1. Colors: When selecting the background color of your announcement bar, it should reflect the branding color palette of the rest of your store. You don’t need to make the bar bright red or neon yellow for it to effectively draw attention (although, should these colors apply to your brand then go for it!) The best recommendation for color choice is to pick a favorable color from your brand palette and go approximately three shades darker. You can utilize the Color Hex Codes to design a palette.


  2. Links: For whatever information you decide to display on your announcement bar, be sure to add a link to one of your pages. If someone is interested in any information on your homepage, they will automatically be seeking an easy-to-find link to view/learn more. Typically, it is helpful to link to the “All Products” page so that they can have a diverse overview of your catalog. If the information on the bar speaks to a specific collection or product, you can link to a more narrow section of your store. Whatever feels best for your scenario.



Level up with an application


Our App Store includes a variety of applications that can boost the look and functionality of your announcement bar. A great feature to consider through an application would be a countdown timer like one provided through the app Privy


The countdown timer is popular when promoting a sale such as BFCM since it adds an extra layer of interest when landing on your homepage. It also provides a sense of urgency to purchase which is known to help convert sales. 




You can discover many other exciting features through add-on apps to amplify your announcement bar. Take a look at all the options available directly from our App Store


Implementing an announcement bar is a small change that will certainly bring a big impact to your conversion rate over time. When a visitor lands on your homepage, it’s important to give them a reason to want to shop. An announcement bar avoids scrolling, presents useful information in a subtle way and converts sales naturally. Utilizing this feature is the best way to provide compelling and concise information without the need to scroll. Long term gains are possible with small updates like this. 

Promotion image (Anonymous)