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What is Shopify? 7 things you need to know about Shopify

What is Shopify? 7 things you need to know about Shopify

Posted by Gary Doer8 minutes read

Shopify started over ten years ago when our founder Tobi wanted to sell snowboards with his company at that time called Snowdevil. He quickly realized it was incredibly challenging to sell snowboards online without an easy to use ecommerce platform. So he decided to create it himself, and Shopify was born.

What is Shopify?

Shopify is a leading commerce platform designed for stores and businesses of various sizes, industries, and locations worldwide. Headquartered in Ottawa, Canada, they currently power over 1,000,000 businesses worldwide. The platform has been trusted by powerhouse brands such as Tesla, Google, Red Bull, Nestle, Kanye West, Rebecca Minkoff, Kylie Cosmetics, and many more.

Shopify offers a 14-day free trial, so merchants can test out the platform to see if it’s right for them. During your trial, you can build your own online store, test out free Shopify apps, and if you promote hard enough, make your first sale.

How does Shopify work?

Shopify is an e-commerce platform that hosts your online store. It helps organize the layout of your store’s appearance through themes. It also offers payment processing, which allows you to accept and receive payment for the products you sell.

Below you’ll find the different products or services that you can sell on Shopify. Even if you know what you’re selling already, it may give you some ideas for other services you could sell to grow your business.

  • Physical products: A physical product could be something you make by hand, something you have manufactured, or something you dropship to customers.
  • Digital products: This could include ebooks, email templates, audio downloads, Lightroom presets for photographers, e-courses, or clothing patterns.
  • Services and consultations: Whether you’re an interior designer, dentist or a life coach, your customers can book online and sell online or in-person consultations.
  • Memberships: If you want to sell subscription boxes or if you’re a yoga studio owner you can use Shopify to sell your memberships and create member-only access to your content on your website.
  • Ticketed experiences: Experience-based businesses can range from travel and adventure to wine tastings and hands-on workshops. If you’re an artist or running a networking event, you can use Shopify to sell those tickets.
  • Classes and lessons: Customers can purchase, rent, and book lessons from you all through the online store.
  • Rentals: Rental businesses are technically service-based, even though a physical product is involved. So if you’d like to rent dresses or props, for example, you can use the Shopify platform.

Ultimately, Shopify allows you to not only build an online store but gives you insights about your customers so you can better serve your audience. With so many features, it’s basically your go-to tool to building a successful online store.

What does Shopify cost?

Shopify offers competitive rates and pricing plans to help you find one that fits your needs and budget.

If you are unsure which pricing plan to choose, then register for a 14-day free trial to see how Shopify's features can help you to sell your products and build your business. You can always upgrade your plan to add new features and functionality to your store.

Shopify Pricing

Additional plans: The Lite plan to sell on social media can also be purchased for about $9 a month. Shopify also offers an enterprise plan (Plus) for gigantic online stores – it’s not cheap as it starts at $2.000 a month.

Shopify ecosystem


The Shopify community overlaps multiple industries and markets; covering everything from fashion, food, tech, toys, games, health, and more. It serves customers all around the world.

A majority of Shopify merchants build and sell physical products such as clothing, tech accessories, and skincare. Some even specialize in digital products such as tools and plugins for digital creators and musicians.

Shopify hosts both merchants that sell directly to consumers (B2C), and merchants that sell to other businesses (B2B), including wholesale companies.

Shopify also hosts service-based businesses on its platform. These are by-the-time services such as treatments at beauty spas, business consultants that charge by the hour, and creative agencies that offer fixed pricing for their services.
Below is a simple breakdown to illustrate the range of merchant size and maturity that Shopify caters to:

  • Boutiques and pop-up stores
  • Small and medium enterprises (SME), including new startups
  • Large enterprises
  • Wholesale businesses


Plus Partner
Shopify Plus Partners are partners that work almost exclusively with Shopify Plus merchants to extend Shopify’s scalability, flexibility, and support to meet their needs.
Plus Partners fall under one of 02 main categories:

  • Technology Partners provide commerce and integrations that extend the value of Shopify Plus to merchants
  • Service Partners are full-service agencies, developers and designers that provide a comprehensive suite of creative, marketing, and development services.

App Developers
There is always a demand for apps and extensions that can help merchants manage, scale, and innovate their businesses. The Shopify Partners program enables app developers to get established quickly on the API, so they can build custom solutions for different kinds of retail businesses.

Theme Developers
Every month, thousands of business owners download the templates offered on Shopify theme store. Many of these themes were created by Theme partner community. As a developer or theme designer, one can design a theme with Shopify and sell it on Shopify stores for a chance to earn recurring revenue.

Shopify schema

Shopify provides you with a variety of tools to help you to set up and run your business. Depending on the pricing plan that you choose, you can find everything you need to showcase your products online, to process payments, and to make your store work for you.

Shopify POS

If you want to sell your products in person, then you can do so by using the Shopify POS app. You can process sales in a retail store and at mobile locations, such as fairs, pop-ups, and markets.

Shopify's Online Store

If you want to sell online, then you can sign up for a Shopify online store. You will be able to set up all your products in the Shopify admin, and then have a beautiful online store for your customers to visit.

Shopify Domain

Establish your brand and register your domain name through Shopify. Easy automated setup. No configuration needed.

Shopify Oberlo

Oberlo helps you find products that you can dropship directly to your customers, never worry about inventory, packaging, or shipping.

Shopify Themes

Shopify Theme Store includes over 100 free and premium professionally designed ecommerce website templates that you can use for your own online store.

Shopify App Store

The Shopify App Store is the best place for Shopify merchants to find apps that they can use to build their business. 

Shopify Help Center

The Shopify Help Center will support you as you learn about and use Shopify. We have documentation and videos to answer your questions.

Shopify Community

Access a community of over 700,000 Shopify Merchants and Partners and engage in meaningful conversations with your peers.

Shopify Developer

How Shopify empowers third-party developers to extend the Shopify platform, meet unique merchant needs, and build their development business.

Shopify Tools

Explore Shopify free business tools that would help you sell more, improve and grow your retail business.

Shopify Partner Program

Join the Shopify Partner Program — thousands of talented agencies & freelancers who develop Shopify stores, create apps, & perform affiliate marketing.

Shopify Affiliate Program

Use your voice to inspire entrepreneurship with the Shopify Affiliate Program.

Shopify Free Stock Photos

Burst is a free stock photo platform that is powered by Shopify. The image library includes thousands of high-resolution, royalty-free images that were shot by Shopify global community of photographers.

Shopify Exchange

Buy ecommerce websites for sale on Exchange. Revenue and traffic data come from Shopify. Browse hundreds of established businesses for sale or turnkey websites.

Shopify Experts

Find developers, designers, and marketers focused on making your Shopify store a success, and grow your business.

Shopify Pros & Cons

Here’s a brief list of the reasons merchants choose Shopify, followed by a list of common customer complaints


  • Easy to use: you don’t have to worry about technical stuff at all. Nearly everything can be done with a few clicks. Shopify provides great beginner guides and extensive documentation.
  • Flexibility: The core system and templates are already great, but it doesn’t stop there as you have full access to the code.
  • Beautiful Themes: Subscribing merchants can choose from a variety of free, mobile-responsive themes. Premium (paid) themes are also available for merchants who want more options.
  • Tons of Apps: There is 5497 apps, includes free and paid on app store at this moment.
  • 24/7 support: You can access technical support every hour of the day through phone, live chat, or email. Self-help options are available as well.


  • Transaction fees: You can’t avoid transaction fees if you use a third-party payment gateway.
  • URL Structure: You can't change anything in URL structure of Shopify.


Is Shopify the best e-commerce platform, yes or no?

Any business is able to find the expert services of Shopify. If you're a new company or if your company is doing this well that you want to improve your program, you may be thinking about which Shopify pricing program is right for you and your company. Thus do your research thoroughly and you might end up making quite a saving for your business enterprise. A good deal of ecommerce businesses decide to use Stripe because their pricing structure is easy and transparent, and the funds are automatically deposited to your bank account much faster than PayPal.

If you are uncertain which pricing plan to select, register for a 14-day free trial to observe how Shopify's features can let you sell your goods and construct your company. The best thing of the Advanced Shopify pricing program is that everything is completely unlimited, which means that your storage capabilities are never ending. It's an affordable alternative, but if you would like to construct an internet store, you're require the Basic Shopify, Shopify or Advanced Shopify plans. There is an assortment of alternatives out there for theme customization if we are employing the Shopify platform.

Gary Doer

Gary Doer

I am Gary Doer. I have 4 years of experience in marketing positions. I started working as a Customer Care Agent in a call center gradually moving to a Customer Experience Analyst. I am a team player. I am outgoing, dedicated, and open-minded.

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