Shopify Inc SHOP recently inaugurated first-of-its-kind brick-and-mortar location in ROW DTLA in downtown Los Angeles, CA. The space will be utilized by the company’s panel of experts in guiding both the existing and prospective merchants through its robust product and services portfolio.

The experts dubbed to be “Gurus” will be available 24X7 to assist the entrepreneurs and merchants with the required know-how via online portal, telephone and live-chat options. Moreover, Shopify will offer in-person guidance to customers through Shop Class, Retail Tour, Pursuit, among other initiatives.

These initiatives are aimed at providing comprehensive knowledge to small and medium enterprises, and other entrepreneurs regarding the enhancement of business processes online by leveraging various Shopify offerings. The company has already registered greater than 100 entrepreneurs in the first day’s session.

We believe it is a smart move to expand merchant base in and around the location. Notably, more than 400 Shopify merchants based out of Los Angeles have each individually garnered GMV of more than $1 million. Notably, there are approximately 10,000 Shopify merchants teeming in the city.

Moreover, this inauguration has been timed well with holiday season just around the corner. In this time of the year, merchants leave no stone unturned to capitalize on the purchasing furor of consumers.

Merchant Friendly Approach Aids Growth

Notably, shares of Shopify have gained 33.7% year to date, against the industry’s decline of 19.7%.

The outperformance can be primarily attributed to the company’s constant efforts to add functionality to its platform, consequently driving merchant base.

Shopify has been developing various apps, including various AR based applications to streamline customer experience. The company recently enhanced security of its Shopify Payments solution by introducing Fraud Protect. The introduction of Shopify Payments, Shipping and Capital have made it easier for merchants to process payments, ship products and secure financing for their working capital needs, respectively.

Shopify is also working on extending language capabilities beyond English. The company has launched a beta version in six new languages in order to make its platform multilingual and boost international presence.

Further, the company will reap benefits from investments in latest technological developments such as virtual reality (“VR”) and augmented reality (“AR”).

Newly added sales channels like Google Pay, Facebook Messenger, Instagram, Pinterest, eBay and Amazon continue to attract new merchants. Moreover, availability of Apple Pay and addition of Canada Post are some other notable developments that will boost merchant base.

Zacks Rank & Key Picks

Shopify carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). CRM, NetApp NTAP and SS&C Technologies Holdings SSNC, each sporting a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), are stocks worth considering in the same sector. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Salesforce, NetApp and SS&C have a long-term earnings growth rate of 25%, 14.1% and 13.5%, respectively.

The Hottest Tech Mega-Trend of All

Last year, it generated $8 billion in global revenues. By 2020, it’s predicted to blast through the roof to $47 billion. Famed investor Mark Cuban says it will produce “the world’s first trillionaires,” but that should still leave plenty of money for regular investors who make the right trades early.

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