D2C business

Is Shopify Plus Right For You?

Monday

,

July

20

Shopify is the perfect eCommerce platform for startups and small-medium enterprises. But as businesses grow, they may require a more enterprise eCommerce solution. That's where Shopify Plus steps in. Using the same reliable platform, the Plus version of Shopify has many more specifically designed features for large eCommerce brands.

But when will Shopify Plus be right for your brand? In this article, we'll discuss the main differences between Shopify and Shopify Plus, how to upgrade, and an easy guide to work out if Shopify Plus is right for you. 

Main Differences Between Shopify and Shopify Plus

The first thing to note is that Shopify and Shopify Plus are built on the same foundation, which means you'll be using the same text editor to update your content, and the same order management information and layout will be the same in the backend. This is super helpful for brands that are growing and don't have time to learn another SaaS platform; the intuitive UI dashboard is very familiar. 

Shopify Plus, however, has had a series of improvements and features that are aimed explicitly for enterprise eCommerce brands. 

Multiple Storefronts

Shopify Plus allows you to have up to 10 different storefronts under the same license. This enables merchants to expand into other countries and customize the content language, currency, products etc. to provide a better localized experience. The multiple storefronts are extremely useful if brands plan on having separate inventory and warehousing requirements in the different countries they serve.

The Naked Collective uses 2 domains to provide a better experience for those checking out in Euros vs customers checking out in Pounds.


Scalability

Shopify has world-class hosting, and because of their closed backend system, they offer merchants unlimited bandwidth and can process up to 8,000 orders per minute per store. When brands get an influx of customers and traffic during peak times such as Black Friday or holiday flash sales, this can be invaluable. Other eCommerce platforms will require you to upgrade servers as you scale, which can be costly, take a lot of time, and offer a slow user experience. 

Checkout Customisation

While basic branding is available on the Shopify core checkouts, when you upgrade to Shopify Plus, you get much more flexibility to customize the checkout. This allows brands to add upsells, messaging, and flexible branding options. This adds to the overall users' experiences and can lead to better conversion rates.


Patou use a custom branded checkout experience to enhance their user experience until that final conversion.



Wholesale management

Brands who are wanting to expand their B2B market can utilize the wholesale management channel from Shopify Plus. Manage inventory, prices, and information separately to your B2C channel or sync them across a single location. The channel is flexible and versatile enough to suit most B2B wholesale requirements, including:

  • set percentage-based discounts across your entire store or collections
  • set fixed (flat) prices for products and variants in price lists
  • provide different prices to different wholesale customers
  • set volume-based pricing rules for products and variants


Brewtea’s Wholesale site allows them to limit access to prices and products to logged in users only.


Shopify Flow

Automating tasks not only helps improve conversion rates throughout the user journey, but it also frees up hours. This can be important to rapidly growing brands. With Shopify Flow, you can automate tasks depending on triggers that are happening within the store. These can be customer-facing tasks or back-office tasks. 

Order processing, customer tagging, marketing, and inventory reorder are just a few things Flow can do. You can also delay payment and alert your customer service team to check out high-risk orders, preventing a lot of headaches.

An example of how a Shopify Flow can be set up to alert the merchant via Slack of high spenders and adding customer tags for later segmentation


Shopify Flow

Automating tasks not only helps improve conversion rates throughout the user journey, but it also frees up hours. This can be important to rapidly growing brands. With Shopify Flow, you can automate tasks depending on triggers that are happening within the store. These can be customer-facing tasks or back-office tasks. 

Order processing, customer tagging, marketing, and inventory reorder are just a few things Flow can do. You can also delay payment and alert your customer service team to check out high-risk orders, preventing a lot of headaches.


An example of how a Shopify Flow can be set up to alert the merchant via Slack of high spenders and adding customer tags for later segmentation


Customizable Discounts using Shopify Scripts

On Shopify Plus, you have the option of adding in customizable discount scripts. These are written in Ruby and allow much more flexibility to the discount offer. Offer tiered discounts based on quantity or spend, preferential shipping rates for tagged customers or complex BOGO (Buy One, Get One) discounts, and much more. 


Shopify Launchpad

Automating flash sales, inventory drops and holiday events can help brands save lots of time, especially when doing midnight drops. Launchpad by Shopify Plus allows brands to schedule in sitewide changes to their eCommerce store; these include:

  • Changes to theme code and designs
  • Add new products
  • Enable discount scripts
  • Run, change or remove Flows
  • Record and track specific sales data
  • Revert to your old theme after a flash sale/event
  • Run Flows to reorder low inventory after the event

Dedicated Success Manager

When you sign up to Shopify Plus, you're assigned a dedicated customer success manager. This is to ensure brands take full advantage of what the platform has to offer. They are there to recommend strategies, implementations, and can work closely with you to provide complete eCommerce success. 

How to upgrade to Shopify Plus

If you're on the Shopify platform already, there's not a lot to do from your end. Unlike other eCommerce platforms, upgrading from Shopify to Shopify Plus does not require you to change any code, redesign the site or do any arduous data migration. Instead, you have to sign up and go through the onboarding process. 

However, if you're planning on moving from a legacy platform to Shopify Plus there will be data migrations, redesigning and development work that needs to be done. Thankfully, we've created a handy guide for brands migrating from Magento to Shopify Plus.

Is Shopify Plus Right for you? 

While there is no definitive answer to "is Shopify Plus right for you?" There are some guidelines to help you decide if it will improve your eCommerce offering. 

Sales and Revenue

When you make the move to Shopify Plus from Shopify, your transaction fees are waived. Meaning if you're consistently doing around £75,000/month in revenue, the move to Plus will be worth the added cost. 

Of course, the monthly revenue cost will vary depending on your order volume and type of checkout. But take some time to sit down with your accountant and work out if you could actually be losing money by not upgrading to Plus!

Internationalization

If you're looking for a seamless solution to branch out into a different market, Shopify Plus could be what you're looking for. For brands making the move into new markets that are already on Shopify, Plus is the most cost-effective option in terms of flexibility, time to market, and they'll be using a platform they're already used to. 

Feature & Business Growth

As eCommerce businesses grow, so does the need for flexibility, scalability, and automation. This is exactly what Shopify Plus has been geared towards; brands needing the help and space to grow without hindrance. 

Is it time for you to upgrade?

How many of these sound like you?

  • You feel like you've outgrown Shopify
  • Your workforce has grown, and you have several employees working for you
  • You require higher-level functionality to continue growing your business
  • You want to move into new sales channels or global markets
  • You are currently selling £75,000 per month, or are growing rapidly towards that number.

If you're ticking a few of those items, then it might be time for you to upgrade to Shopify Plus. Of course, every brand is unique, and the reasons to upgrade to Shopify Plus are just as unique. If you want to find out more about Plus and if it's right for you, speak to one of our eCommerce consultants.


About the author - Will Lynch

Will heads up the partnership program at Underwaterpistol, who have been building Shopify stores for over 14 years. Specializing in theme builds, custom development, and high-volume SKU migrations, Underwaterpistol uses their unique mix of expertise to design, build and grow best-in-class e-comm brands.