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Shopify VS Shopify Plus: The Differences

Shopify VS Shopify Plus: The Differences

31st March 2022
14 Minute Read

Today's article will compare and contrast the two platforms to see which of the two would come out on top in a Shopify vs Shopify Plus showdown.


Written by Madeleine

31st March 2022
14 Minute Read

The Shopify VS Shopify Plus Battle 🥊

Trying to make a decision between Shopify and Shopify Plus for your online store? You've come to the right place, as today's article will compare and contrast the two platforms to see which of the two would come out on top in a Shopify vs Shopify Plus showdown.

As we’re sure you all know, Shopify Plus is more advanced than Shopify, as it embodies the same basic dashboard and functionalities as its counterpart, but also offers additional; features, integrations, support and access to a store's underlying code.

Therefore, we believe that the small businesses who are looking for an outlet to sell their goods online will find Shopify's basic service to be a terrific option.

However, if you are the owner of a large company with millions of dollars in sales, we’d recommend going with Shopify Plus to provide your customers with a more personalised experience.

Quick Answer

Simply put, Shopify is for individuals that are looking to start or move a small to medium-sized business over to the platform.

On the other hand, Shopify Plus is for the large and established businesses that require a space where the company can continue to evolve and expand like; Nestle, Hawkers, Kylie Cosmetics and Budweiser.

So, with that being said, let’s dive into the difference between Shopify vs Shopify Plus alongside the list of features that Shopify Plus unlocks:

Shopify vs Shopify Plus: What’s The difference? 🤔

For those of you that don’t know, Shopify Plus includes everything that comes with the standard Shopify subscription, plus a few extras.

So, as opposed to focusing on what's the same, we have decided to share the difference between the two platforms by highlighting the additional Shopify Plus benefits, features and significant distinctions.

In a nutshell, there are 13 additional features and enhancements included with the Shopify Plus subscription plan and they are as follows:

N0.1: Dedicated Account Management and Engineering

Users on Shopify can contact the platform for support via; phone, email and live chat. Additionally, merchants on the platform can always consult the expertise of third-party experts, such as developers and agencies like us here at Karmoon.

However, users on Shopify Plus will also receive specialised and dedicated support via an appointed Account Manager and Launch Engineer alongside the options mentioned above for guidance through the store setup and migration process.

Furthermore, Launch Engineers are on hand to assist Shopify Plus merchants with every detail, from third-party integrations to locating partners of the platform to collaborate with on custom projects.

N0.2: Theme Customisation with Access To Liquid 🖥️

The next of the Shopify Plus benefits for merchants on this subscription plan is that users will be able to access additional theme customisation opportunities with the assistance of Liquid.

See, stores on the standard Shopify plan can alter their site’s Shopify theme template by using the editor, though switching to an entirely different theme would be difficult for merchants to undergo without assistance.

However, the Shopify Plus package allows for extensive customisation and includes access to Shopify's Liquid theme code.

As a result, this means that merchants will be able to make changes to the backend of their store with Liquid in the toolbox, giving more power back to the merchant.

N0.3: Unlimited Staff Accounts

Staff accounts are another feature to consider when comparing the differences between Shopify vs Shopify Plus.

In a nutshell, only a limited number of staff accounts are permitted with the basic Shopify subscription. However, merchants on Shopify Plus will be able to utilise an infinite number of staff accounts alongside a plethora of other authorisation options.

Additionally, merchants on this subscription set-up will be able to provide any number of members on a team with access to their online store, whilst reaping the benefits of maintaining control over worker actions within the store admin.

N0.4: Control Over Checkout 🛒

As a store owner, it is only logical that you would want to pay special attention to high-spending consumers and their typical behaviour at the checkout.

One of the Shopify Plus benefits here is that merchants on this plan will be able to modify their checkout experience based on the contents of their shopping basket.

Additionally, users on Shopify Plus will receive access to Shopify Scripts and with this feature, online stores can adjust their; delivery methods, customer information and payment options, which ultimately offers the business more control over their checkout experience.

However, for merchants using the standard Shopify plan, specialist applications will be required to alter the checkout process onsite.

Shopify vs Shopify Plus (2)

N0.5: API Integrations

APIs allow third-party programmes to be integrated with any website. So, to help merchants on Shopify take full advantage of third-party apps, plans with Shopify Plus include enhanced API resources such as; GiftCard, User and Multipass.

Here’s a quick run-through of each resource:

GiftCard is a type of alternative payment.

Merchants can; add, remove, amend and retrieve information across staff accounts via the User feature.

Visitors on site will be automatically redirected to the Shopify store when they use their Multipass login (without separate login credentials or the need to synchronise the customer database).

Furthermore, Shopify Plus also enables merchants to interface with third-party apps and create private apps.

N0.6: Exclusive Applications 📱

Another of the Shopify Plus benefits for merchants is that users are provided with access to exclusive Shopify apps via the Shopify App Store that is not available to regular users on Shopify.

For instance;

Wholesale Channel has been designed to help users with a high volume of B2B sales

Shopify Flow helps to automate many customer-facing tasks and office processes within a store and across its applications. Shopify Flow also stores and executes; triggers, conditions and actions that can be controlled to; tag loyal customers and send reorder requests without the need to code.

Launchpad is useful to plan and automate; flash sales, product launches and sales campaigns.

Script Editor allows merchants to create personalised experiences at the shopping checkout stage and small pieces of code help to apply discounts and customise shipping and payment options for customers, ultimately reducing the number of abandoned carts for the business.

Transporter App works to import; customer, product and order records into a Shopify store. This makes it easy for retailers to send customer records across multiple stores.

Bulk Account Inviter is an essential tool when it comes to inviting customers that have been imported from another platform or store to activate their accounts with your business.

N0.7: Integrations with Existing Platforms

While users can connect an unlimited number of apps to their Shopify store, it may make more sense for high-growth enterprises to integrate with their existing platforms and using Shopify's API makes this possible.

Examples include:

Product information management (PIM)

Enterprise resource planning (ERP)

Inventory and order management (IMS and OMS)

Customer relationship management (CRM)

Third-party logistics (3PL)

Warehouse management software (WMS)

Global fulfilment partners

N0.8: Wholesale Channels 📦

The wholesale channel is another feature in today’s Shopify vs Shopify Plus comparison.

As a business begins to grow, it will undoubtedly attract consumers who are eager to buy from the store in bulk.

Furthermore, it's also logical to assume that an enterprise-level platform will make wholesale sales easier.

So, based upon an online store, the wholesale channel will allow merchants to construct a separate, password-protected site.

This implies that merchants will be able to offer wholesale buyers special wholesale-only products or the same products at exclusive wholesale prices.

Additionally, retailers can also provide personalised pricing lists or discount codes.

In a nutshell, the Shopify Plus benefits for merchants on this plan include being able to; send invoices, track orders, utilise current product data/ connectors and manage both B2C and B2B enterprises from a single dashboard.

N0.9: Merchant Success Program

Did you know that a Merchant Success Program is available on Shopify Plus to assist its users with getting the most out of the platform?

With this program, the platform will assist its users with; third-party integrations, products and platforms, as well as providing training to help maximise each store’s potential.

If and when you choose to get started with Shopify Plus, you will be assigned a Merchant Success Manager that will be on hand to assist you with everything you require.

Aside from 24/ 7 assistance, the Shopify team is available to help locate certified Shopify Plus Partners to keep its merchants up to date on industry trends and assist with events such as flash discounts.

N0.10: Exclusive Resource Access 🙌

The Merchant Success Program is not the only resource available to Shopify Plus users, as the other resources available on this plan include:

A Facebook community where merchants can share their experiences with other Shopify Plus users.

The Partners directory provides retailers with access to; technology, agency and solution partners.

Another of the Shopify Plus benefits is being able to access exclusive beta programs.

Access to the Shopify Plus Academy is also granted to guide merchants on how to use the Shopify Plus platform.

N0.11: Multi-Store Dashboard

When it comes to the debate of Shopify vs Shopify Plus, there’s one area where Shopify Plus has the edge over its counterpart and that is the multi-store dashboard.

Shopify Plus now offers users a new dashboard to manage all its; stores, analytics, staff accounts, user permissions and automation tools (such as Shopify Flow), all from one place.

Additionally, this dashboard allows online stores to have a complete overview of their business, promoting teamwork and improving automation.

N0.12: In-Depth Analytics 📈

Shopify offers its users access to a detailed analytics dashboard where store information regarding; sales, popular goods, landing pages, referrals and returning customer rates can be viewed.

Furthermore, it’s worth noting that professional reports can be produced with this tool and merchants can receive up-to-date information about their business.

While this may be sufficient for most businesses, Shopify Plus collaborates with premier analytics companies to keep online stores up to date with the latest trends and analytics.

N0.13: Shopify Plus Pricing

Now, this isn't a brand-new function, but it is a significant distinction when it comes to our discussion of the differences between Shopify vs Shopify Plus.

Therefore, it’s important to note that regardless of your store’s sales volume, the fundamental Shopify service includes flat pricing plans.

However, for a particular price with Shopify Plus, you will need to speak with the platform’s sales team.

Nonetheless, if you’re looking for a roundabout figure, the charges are set at a minimum of $2,000 per month or 0.25% of your store’s monthly sales volume (capped at $40,000), depending on which is greater.

For instance, if your store generates $2 million in monthly sales, your business would be required to pay $5,000 per month.

So, if your store only generates $100,000 per month, you would pay the $2,000 minimum instead, as opposed to the 0.25% of sales.

Shopify vs Shopify Plus: Final Thoughts 💭

To summarise, when it comes to the dashboard and basic ecommerce features offered by Shopify and Shopify Plus, the offerings of these two platforms are identical at their very core.

However, the key difference between these two subscription plans lies in the fact that Shopify Plus provides merchants with additional; flexibility, support choices and access to the underlying code of an online store.

While this is a fantastic reality for stores on Shopify Plus, there is no shying away from the fact that it is a costly plan to maintain, demanding a minimum monthly fee of $2,000 per month.

So, unless your company truly requires the capabilities that come with Shopify Plus, we would recommend going with Shopify’s original plan and putting a pin into the move until you can be sure that the expenditure will pay for itself.

However, if your business is already generating millions in sales, take the plunge and go with Shopify Plus to continue expanding your business.

So, what are your thoughts on our guide to the key differences between Shopify vs Shopify Plus? Reach out and let us know.

If you’re actively looking to work with a Shopify agency designer or developer to assist you with your business, we’d love to hear from you. Get in touch to get started!

Get Started with Shopify

Looking to get started with Shopify? Take advantage of Shopify's 14-day free trial, no credit card is required.

If you're actively looking to work with a Shopify agency designer or developer to assist you with your business, we'd love to hear from you. Get in touch to get started!

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