Are you considering Shopify or Shopify Plus for your business? Choosing the right platform can make a world of difference in your e-commerce success!
In this article, we’ll compare Shopify vs Shopify Plus to help you make an informed decision. Both platforms offer powerful features, but there are some key differences to consider.
We’ll dive into the features, pricing, scalability, and other factors to help you determine which option is the best fit for your business. Whether you’re just starting out or looking to scale to new heights, this guide will provide the insights you need to choose the right version of Shopify for your needs.
|💡 Take a look at how Shopify compares to other eCommerce platforms:|
What Is Shopify?
Shopify is a well-known platform for eCommerce merchants of all sizes. Shopify is trusted by millions of merchants, with many famous brands opting for its easy-to-use interface, customization options, and dedicated support.
According to the data from Demand Sage, Shopify had more than 2.1 million daily active users in 2023. It is also predicted that Shopify merchants will have over 700 million customers in 2023. Nearly 649 million people purchased from a Shopify store in 2022 alone.
Shopify is one of the best comprehensive e-commerce platforms that supports starting, growing, and managing your business. It is a cloud-based and hosted solution, meaning you can access it from any device with an internet connection, and Shopify takes care of software and server upgrades and maintenance for you.
Shopify offers some of the best features:
- Simple storefront creation: Range of professional themes, branding options, domain names, and customization options such as blogging to make it easy for anyone to create a storefront.
- Shopping cart and store management: Shopify provides various options for managing your store, including abandoned checkout recovery, automatic carrier shipping rates, customer profiles, and refunds.
- Marketing and SEO tools: Shopify offers tools for marketing and SEO, including Google Ads credits, discounts, and social media integrations.
- Analytics: Shopify provides analytics tools to help you track the store’s performance and make data-driven decisions.
- Mobile app options: Shopify allows you to create mobile apps for your store to reach customers on the go.
- Product organization: Shopify offers various levels of product organization to help you manage your inventory.
- 24/7 dedicated support: Shopify has a support team available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, by email, live chat, and phone to assist you with any questions or issues you may have.
What Is Shopify Plus?
Shopify Plus is an enterprise-level e-commerce platform that builds upon the features and capabilities of the standard Shopify.
The primary difference between Shopify vs Shopify Plus lies in the target customers.
With Shopify Plus, businesses can access advanced features and tools to support them in managing their online stores and growing their businesses with higher revenue and sales.
In the following section, you will discover some crucial aspects of Shopify Plus that will aid you in comprehending the distinctions and opt for the most suitable one for your business expansion.
To give you a brief overview, these features include:
- Exclusive apps
- Exclusive management tools
- Additional API calls
- Exclusive Shopify Plus community
- Unlimited staff account
- Merchant Success Program, and much more.
Shopify vs Shopify Plus: An In-Depth Comparison
While the core Shopify plan is still a great option, Shopify Plus takes things to the next level with its advanced capabilities and tools.
Let’s explore what sets Shopify vs Shopify Plus apart and why one of these two may be the right choice for your business. As a preview, here’s a comparison table:
|Pricing||3 pricing tiers: Basic ($25/month), Shopify ($65/month), Advanced ($399/month)||$2000+ per month based on sales volume|
|Level of support||
|Themes & design||
|Number of staff accounts||Depending on subscription||Unlimited|
|Checkout||Standard customization with certain features||Full access to the checkout code with Script Editor|
|API integration||API calls at 2 calls per second||API calls at 4 calls per second|
|Applications||Access to Shopify App Store||Access to Shopify App Store and other exclusive apps|
|Wholesale channel||No exclusive feature, only with methods such as using discount codes or opening a separate store||Exclusive wholesale channel feature|
|Merchant Success Program||Standard program available to all users with online resources||Advanced and exclusive program tailored to the specific needs and goals of each enterprise-level business|
|Access exclusive resources
||Access to public resources only||
||Built-in analytics dashboard||
|Extra stores||1 extra store||Up to 10 extra stores|
||Includes Shopify POS Pro for free for all locations|
When considering a platform for your business, pricing is an essential factor. It’s worth noting that Shopify vs Shopify Plus have different pricing structures, so it’s necessary to carefully weigh the options and select what works best for your budget.
Shopify offers three public pricing plans for its standard version: Basic Shopify, Shopify, and Advanced Shopify.
The prices for the Shopify plans are as follows:
- Basic Shopify: $25 per month
- Shopify: $65 per month
- Advanced Shopify: $399 per month
You can also try any of these plans for free with a 14-day trial. Additionally, Shopify offers a Lite plan for $9 per month, which lets you sell products on an existing website or social media, and a Plus plan for enterprise-level businesses, which we will discuss next.
Each plan comes with a set of core features that allow you to create and manage your online store, such as:
- A fully hosted website with unlimited bandwidth and products
- A secure shopping cart that accepts multiple payment methods
- A built-in blog and marketing tools
- Access to hundreds of themes and apps
- 24/7 customer support
Plans differ in transaction fees, staff accounts, storage, shipping discounts, and reporting tools. Higher plans offer lower fees, more accounts and storage, higher discounts, and advanced analytics.
💡 Check out our evaluation of Shopify’s pricing for a better understanding of store costs before starting an online store or watch this video:
Shopify Plus pricing
Shopify Plus pricing is determined through direct negotiation. You can request by clicking the “Get Pricing” button and filling out the contact form.
While the exact cost of Shopify Plus can vary, retailers can expect to pay at least $2,000 per month based on their sales volume. This is what sets Shopify vs Shopify Plus apart.
Once sales reach $800,000 per month, the charging system switches to a revenue-based model, where you’ll pay 0.25% of your monthly revenue as Shopify Plus fees, up to a maximum of $40,000. For example, if your store does $5 million in monthly sales, you’d pay $12,500 monthly.
If you use Shopify Payments in the United States, you’ll pay a fee of 2.15% + $0.30 for each domestic Visa and Mastercard transaction.
- For American Express and international cards, an additional fee of 1% applies.
- If you use other third-party payment gateways such as PayPal, Checkout, or Skrill, an extra fee of 0.15% will be charged.
2. Level of support
Shopify offers 24/7 support via phone, email, and live chat and the option to hire Shopify Experts for additional assistance. However, depending on the volume of requests and the availability of support agents, you may have to wait in queue for some time before you can get in touch with them.
In contrast, Shopify Plus offers personalized and dedicated support for your store. The Launch Engineer and Merchant Success Manager provides detailed guidance on optimizing your use of Shopify Plus, strategic coaching, and insights into industry trends to assist you in staying ahead of the competition.
- Launch Engineer guides you through the entire store setup or migration process. This personal support will get your business up and running within 90 days or less.
- Merchant Success Manager will take over to help you fully realize your potential with expert strategy and support.
3. Custom themes & design
Both Shopify vs Shopify Plus offer access to over 150 themes in the Theme Store, with prices ranging from $170-$380 for paid themes, apart from 12 free themes.
Shopify allows you to change the theme to edit HTML or CSS. However, this requires a basic understanding of editing, and switching to an entirely new theme can be complex.
In contrast, the Shopify Plus plan offers higher customization by giving you access to Shopify’s theme language – Liquid. With Liquid, you can:
- Make changes at the code level for greater control over your store’s design.
- Have the assistance of a Launch Manager who can write code and make custom edits for you.
It can save enterprise-level businesses time and money by providing top-quality design flexibility without in-house coding expertise for customizing Shopify’s themes.
4. Number of staff accounts
One of the factors that differentiate the basic Shopify plan from Shopify Plus is the number of staff accounts and the level of access that they have to your online store.
With Shopify plans, the number of staff accounts can be created varies based on which plan you opted for:
- Basic Plan allows you to create 2 staff accounts, in addition to the store owner account
- Shopify Plan offers 5 slots for staff accounts
- Advanced Plan allows up to 15 staff accounts
Shopify Plus allows you to create unlimited staff accounts, which means that you can have as many people as you need working on your store.
Shopify Plus also enables additional permission settings that give you more control over what each staff member can see and do in your store. For example, you can:
- Grant access to specific sections of your Shopify admin, such as orders, products, customers, discounts, reports, and settings.
- Create custom roles and permissions for different groups of staff members, such as managers, marketers, developers, and designers.
Shopify Plus can help you grant access to any team members to work on your online store and have more control over their actions within the store admin. It can be advantageous for larger businesses with multiple team members working on the online store.
Shopify Plus allows you to use the Script Editor to customize your checkout page, a feature not available on other Shopify plans!
Shopify scripts consist of small snippets of code that permit you to create personalized experiences for your customers in their carts and during checkout. You can create three types of scripts!
|Line item scripts||
Bot challenges on the checkout page are helpful during online events to prevent bots or competitors from interfering with the checkout process.
When activated, customers are required to prove that they are human before completing their purchase. Bot challenges can be helpful during online events to prevent bots or competitors from interfering with the checkout process.
6. API integration
APIs allow interoperability with other systems and platforms, adding innovative features to Shopify vs Shopify Plus.
All Shopify plans have a limit on how many API calls they can make per second, specifically 2 calls per second. This means that if you or an app tries to make more than 2 requests in one second, you will get an error message and have to wait until the next second to try again.
This can affect the performance and functionality of your online store, especially if you have a lot of traffic or integrations.
Meanwhile, the API call limit for Shopify Plus is 4 calls per second. This means that you can make twice as many requests as Shopify without getting an error message. This allows you to integrate your online store with more third-party platforms, such as:
- Product Information Management (PIM).
- Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP).
- Order Management (IMS and OMS).
- Customer relationship management (CRM).
- Third-party logistics (3PL).
- Warehouse management software (WMS), etc.
Shopify Plus provides access to additional and exclusive APIs, including REST APIs
- GiftCard: Alternative payment method
- Multipass: Easily direct your website visitors to your Shopify store without requiring them to log in separately or sync any customer databases.
- User: Manage your staff accounts efficiently by quickly adding, removing, editing, and retrieving all necessary information. Streamline your workflow and keep all your records up to date without hassle.
7. Exclusive apps
Shopify Plus offers a range of exclusive apps designed to help businesses with high-volume sales and complex needs, which can’t be accessed publically like the Shopify App Store.
Some exclusive apps include:
- Shopify Flow:
The e-commerce automation platform for businesses to automate many customer-facing tasks and office processes within their store and across their apps. With a simple visual builder, Shopify Flow stores and executes triggers, conditions, and actions to perform tasks such as tagging loyal customers and sending reorder requests, all without any coding required.
Helpful for planning and automating flash sales, product launches, or sales campaigns.
- Script Editor:
Create personalized experiences at the shopping cart/checkout stage by using small pieces of code to apply discounts or customize shipping and payment options for customers. It can help reduce the number of abandoned carts.
- Transporter app:
Quickly import customer, product, and order records into their Shopify store, making it easy to transfer customer records between stores.
- Bulk Account Inviter:
Invite customers imported from another platform/store to activate their accounts for their online business. It is useful after importing customer accounts from another platform or store.
- ShopifyQL Notebooks:
Visualize, analyze & present different business data from within the Shopify admin.
- Wholesale channel:
Supports users with a high volume of B2B sales by providing a dedicated wholesale channel for managing and processing wholesale orders.
These exclusive apps provide Shopify Plus users with powerful tools and capabilities to help them manage and grow their online stores more effectively.
8. Wholesale channel
Wholesale sales can significantly contribute to the growth and expansion of your business. Shopify offers a variety of manners to sell your products wholesale, including using discount codes or opening a separate store.
However, the wholesale channel is one key feature that sets Shopify Plus apart from standard Shopify plans.
Let’s explore more about it, which was previously mentioned as an exclusive app! The wholesale channel allows you to:
- Create a separate, password-protected storefront based on your online store. It means you can offer the same products at exclusive prices to wholesale buyers or even exclusive wholesale-only products.
- Shopify Plus efficiently manages B2B and B2C orders from a single control panel. If you already have a Shopify store, Shopify Plus can synchronize entities such as inventory, orders, and customers between the two stores.
- Create customized price lists or discount codes into smaller segments with specific pricing for each group.
- Create separate pages to display FAQs, policies, and terms related to wholesale sales. Your customers find the information they need without having to leave your site.
9. Merchant Success Program
Shopify Plus offers a Merchant Success Program to help users maximize the value they get from the platform. The program supports third-party integrations, products, platforms, and training to help users fully realize their potential.
In addition to 24/7 support, the Merchant Success team is available to assist you in finding approved Shopify Plus Partners to keep you up-to-date with industry trends and help with events such as flash sales. The program is designed to provide personalized support and guidance to help you grow your business on the Shopify Plus platform.
10. Ability to access exclusive resources
Other resources available to Shopify Plus users:
- A Facebook community
- Partners directory
- Exclusive beta programs.
- Shopify Plus Academy.
11. Analytics options
Shopify and Shopify Plus provide analytics options to help businesses track their performance & make data-driven decisions. On both platforms, you can access detailed reports and analytics that offer insights into your sales, customers, and marketing efforts.
- Sales reports: They provide detailed information on your sales, including total sales, sales by product, sales by channel, and more. Users use this information to track their sales performance over time & identify trends and opportunities for growth.
- Customer reports: These reports provide insights into your customers, including their demographics, behavior, and purchase history.
- Marketing reports: Provide information on the effectiveness of your marketing campaigns, including data on traffic, conversions, and revenue.
- Custom reports: Allows users to create custom reports to track the metrics most important to your business. It provides a high level of flexibility and control over your analytics data.
Shopify Plus offers additional analytics features unavailable on the standard Shopify plan. For example, Shopify Plus provides access to more in-depth reports and a higher level of customization for your analytics data. It allows businesses to track the most critical metrics and gain deeper insights into their performance.
12. Extra stores
While a regular Shopify account allows you to build only one store, a Shopify Plus subscription allows you to create up to ten stores through its ‘expansion stores’ allowance.
These additional stores can be used to create more selling opportunities for internationalization purposes or cater to stores with different physical locations.
It is possible to add expansion stores beyond the standard Shopify Plus limit of ten, however, this involves an additional cost of $250 monthly per store/a revenue share split with Shopify across all stores.
13. POS feature
Shopify POS (Point of Sale) features allow you to sell both online and in physical locations while keeping track of your inventory.
Shopify offers various POS features to help you sell in person and online. However, if you want to access the most advanced and powerful features for your retail business, you may need to pay an additional fee for Shopify POS Plus.
Shopify POS Plus is a premium POS plan that costs $89 per month per device, and it includes features such as:
- Omnichannel loyalty and promotions: You can create and manage loyalty programs and discounts across your online and offline channels, and reward your customers for their purchases and referrals.
- Advanced inventory management: You can track and update your inventory across multiple locations, transfer stock between locations, adjust inventory counts, and set up automated replenishment rules.
- In-depth retail reporting: You can access detailed reports and insights on your sales, inventory, customers, staff performance, profitability, and more.
- Scale up to 20 locations: You can manage up to 20 physical locations with Shopify POS Plus, compared to 8 locations with other Shopify plans.
- Work with unlimited staff: You can create unlimited staff accounts and assign different roles and permissions to your team members.
- Use unlimited registers: You can use as many devices as you need to run Shopify POS at each location, without paying extra fees.
- Create purchase orders: You can create and send purchase orders to your suppliers from your Shopify admin or app.
- Attribute sales to staff: You can track which staff member made each sale and calculate commissions or bonuses based on their performance.
However, if you have a Shopify Plus plan, you don’t have to worry about paying extra for Shopify POS Plus! Many of the features that are included in Shopify POS Plus are also included in your Shopify Plus subscription. This means that you can enjoy the benefits of both platforms without paying twice.
Shopify vs Shopify Plus are both excellent choices for businesses looking to sell online, but which one is right for you?
Shopify has three core plans that cater to small, medium, and large businesses, providing everything you need to thrive at affordable prices. You can try it for free for three days.
Shopify Plus is the premium option, with professional support and powerful features. Although it is more expensive, it is cost-efficient and minimizes workload. It provides everything your enterprise-grade business needs to grow sustainably.
In summary, both Shopify vs Shopify Plus have their strengths, but it is the way to go if you’re looking for the best in support, customizability, and features, then it is the way to go!