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The Shopify Plus Headless Commerce Architecture

The Shopify Plus Headless Commerce Architecture

13th January 2022
7 Minute Read

The Shopify Plus headless commerce architecture is like a unique foundation which provides possible limitless customisations and controlled capabilities.


Written by Madeleine

13th January 2022
7 Minute Read

Headless Commerce Architecture 🤯

Have you ever come across the term 'headless commerce' but had no idea what it meant? Maybe you do know what it represents but are not quite sure what it could bring to your business?

If you have questions, fear not because we here at Karmoon are here to answer them, as in today's guide, we will be discussing all things headless.

However, before we can delve into the details of the Shopify Plus headless commerce architecture, let's take things back to the basics and walk through the functionality of headless commerce:

Introducing Headless Commerce

When an ecommerce website is built, two layers of a store co-exist together. These layers are known as the 'front end' and the 'back end' of a website.

For those of you wondering how it all works, essentially, everything on the front end is for users to view, whilst everything at the back is handled internally by the technical team of a business.

Typically, these components are married, packaged and controlled simultaneously from the back end of the store, but headless commerce tends to operate a little differently.

With a headless structure, each layer is an entirely separate entity as they communicate with one another via application programming interfaces (APIs).

The key difference that headless commerce brings to the table is that any changes made to the back end of a website will not affect the front end or vice versa. For instance, if a digital user were to interact with a web page, the device/ application in use would send instructions from the front end to the back end of a website to be actioned individually.

The Shopify Plus Headless Architecture 🖥️

So, now that you’ve got a rough idea of how headless commerce works, the following will be easier to comprehend:

The Shopify Plus headless commerce architecture is like a unique foundation that provides limitless customisations and controlled capabilities to online stores on the platform.

As a result, merchants have full control over the fate of their store’s design and digital performance.

So, now that developers have more time to spare, their attention and expertise will be able to focus solely on more complex tasks that will directly impact the back end of an ecommerce website, while the team focus on the store's performance.

Ultimately, this solution brings products to market faster, whilst improving conversions and customer experiences along the way.

Why Shopify Plus?

Shopify Plus is a popular platform of choice for those who are looking to go headless, as it’s a well-known fact that top, innovative brands such as; Allbirds, Grass Roots Farmers' Cooperative, Babylist and FIGS are utilising Shopify’s architecture to provide their creative ideas with an outlet.

Here’s a quick breakdown of the platform’s benefits:

N0.1: Innovation

With Shopify headless commerce, merchants can turn virtually any screen into a digital storefront. From web pages and mobile apps to smart mirrors and wearables, anything is possible for the stores that join the Shopify Plus enterprise.

N0.2: Freedom To Develop

With a headless Shopify store comes the freedom to develop. This means that a development team will be able to build a store with the languages and frameworks that they are used to using. Thus, making a store easy to curate.

N0.3: Omnichannel Sales

Additionally, Shopify headless commerce allows merchants to start selling their products across all of the digital mediums that customers use and the best part is that everything can be managed from the back end.

N0.4: Content Management

Content management is a crucial part of every online business, but with Shopify Plus, the stores that choose to go headless will be able to publish content updates across their storefronts instantly via the existing content management system.

N0.5: Creative Control

Shopify headless commerce separates a store’s back end infrastructure from the front end customer touchpoints.

So essentially, this means that merchants can build new selling opportunities anywhere while managing everything from one central location. With Shopify Plus, headless commerce couldn't be easier.

Tried & Tested 🧪

So, you’ve heard our take on why we believe the Shopify Plus headless commerce architecture is a complete game-changer for online retailers, but for those of you who are still wondering - why Shopify Plus? Perhaps a few words from those who have tried and tested the solution can share a little more insight:

“We wanted the best user experience for our customers. Our progressive web app significantly increased our mobile average order value.
With the increase in revenue, we support our sustainability efforts.” - Cody Hopkins, the Founding farmer and CEO at Grass Roots Farmers’ Cooperative.
“That was the inflexion point. It was ridiculous that we spent six weeks working to fix something that had already been invented.” - TJ Moretto, the Director of Engineering at Babylist.
“We went with a headless architecture because it brings a lot of the customisations we wanted to control directly to our fingertips.” - Rares Crisan, the Director of Engineering at Kotn.

Design & Build with Trustworthy Tools

Shopify headless commerce also provides merchants with trustworthy tools, as online stores can design; speedy, seamless and engaging storefronts for the web and mobile alongside video games and more by utilising the GraphQL Storefront API.

Shopify Plus merchants will also find that they can plug in their essential tools and systems such as; ERP, PIM, CRM, and CMS that the business has come to count on.

Personal tech stacks can also be brought to the table, meaning that the team can build quickly using the tools of their choosing.

Whatsmore is that Shopify Plus Partners are on hand to deliver the headless experience that your team has been imagining. It’s an exciting time to take advantage of Shopify’s headless commerce solution.

Quick-Fire Commerce 🔥

  • 10K brands trust Shopify Plus as their commerce engine.
  • 22 million hours are saved by automating workflows with Shopify Flow.
  • 250+ Shopify Plus Partners are ready to help build custom storefronts.
  • $314 billion is the total amount of sales made with Shopify so far.

Scale with Shopify

Transform any digital screen or device into a sales channel, backed by the; speed, power and scalability of the Shopify Plus headless commerce architecture. It's time to go out there and get creative.

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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