Shopify Plus: eCommerce beyond the basics 

By Ikius Team

25th January, 2024

Shopify Plus is the main eCommerce platform for high-growth and high-volume merchants, offering scalability, performance, and customization packaged in an easy-to-understand UI. 

Yet, beyond these well-known benefits, Shopify Plus harbors a suite of capabilities and strategic advantages often overlooked by smaller merchants. 

Let's delve into these less-known parts to uncover the value Shopify Plus offers businesses that want to redefine their eCommerce strategy.

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What is Shopify Plus?

Shopify Plus is Shopify's enterprise-grade eCommerce platform designed for large brands and businesses. 

It offers advanced features, scalability, and customization options beyond what's available in a basic Shopify plan. 

Shopify Plus is tailored to meet the needs of businesses looking to expand their operations, improve their customer experience, and streamline their eCommerce processes with a robust, secure, and flexible platform.

Read more: Shopify vs Shopify Plus

Wait, are headless Shopify and Shopify Plus the same?

In previous posts, we’ve talked about headless commerce and headless Shopify, and the short answer here is no. Shopify Plus and headless Shopify are not the same. 

Headless Shopify refers to a technical architecture where the front-end presentation layer of a website (what the user sees) is decoupled from the back-end eCommerce functionality (where products, orders, and customer data are managed). 

This approach allows businesses to use Shopify as the eCommerce engine while customizing the user experience with different front-end technologies, such as React, Vue, Next.js, or Gatsby.

FeatureShopify PlusHeadless Shopify
Target audienceLarge businesses and high-volume merchants seeking advanced features, scalability, and dedicated support.Businesses seeking ultimate flexibility in customizing user experiences across various touchpoints, regardless of their size.
CustomizationProvides advanced customization capabilities through exclusive apps and features, including checkout customization.Allows for using any front-end technology, offering limitless customization possibilities of the user interface.
Integration and flexibilityOffers a range of integrations with third-party apps and services through the Shopify App Store and exclusive Shopify Plus features.Enables integration with various CMS, DXP, or PWA technologies, thanks to API-driven architecture, for a seamless user experience across platforms.
Support and servicesIncludes dedicated support from Shopify's Merchant Success Program and access to 24/7 priority support.Requires technical expertise to implement and manage, often necessitating developer resources or partnerships with agencies.
ScalabilityDesigned for scalability, handling high volumes of traffic and transactions with ease.Scalability is dependent on the chosen front-end technology but allows for optimization of performance and load times.
PricingStarts at $2,000 per month, with pricing that can increase based on platform usage and specific needs.Costs associated with headless Shopify are variable, depending on the chosen front-end solutions and additional services required.
Use casesSuited for businesses that need an all-in-one enterprise eCommerce solution with extensive support.Ideal for businesses that require a highly customized shopping experience or need to integrate their Shopify store with other systems
FeatureTarget audience
Shopify PlusLarge businesses and high-volume merchants seeking advanced features, scalability, and dedicated support.
Headless ShopifyBusinesses seeking ultimate flexibility in customizing user experiences across various touchpoints, regardless of their size.
FeatureCustomization
Shopify PlusProvides advanced customization capabilities through exclusive apps and features, including checkout customization.
Headless ShopifyAllows for using any front-end technology, offering limitless customization possibilities of the user interface.
FeatureIntegration and flexibility
Shopify PlusOffers a range of integrations with third-party apps and services through the Shopify App Store and exclusive Shopify Plus features.
Headless ShopifyEnables integration with various CMS, DXP, or PWA technologies, thanks to API-driven architecture, for a seamless user experience across platforms.
FeatureSupport and services
Shopify PlusIncludes dedicated support from Shopify's Merchant Success Program and access to 24/7 priority support.
Headless ShopifyRequires technical expertise to implement and manage, often necessitating developer resources or partnerships with agencies.
FeatureScalability
Shopify PlusDesigned for scalability, handling high volumes of traffic and transactions with ease.
Headless ShopifyScalability is dependent on the chosen front-end technology but allows for optimization of performance and load times.
FeaturePricing
Shopify PlusStarts at $2,000 per month, with pricing that can increase based on platform usage and specific needs.
Headless ShopifyCosts associated with headless Shopify are variable, depending on the chosen front-end solutions and additional services required.
FeatureUse cases
Shopify PlusSuited for businesses that need an all-in-one enterprise eCommerce solution with extensive support.
Headless ShopifyIdeal for businesses that require a highly customized shopping experience or need to integrate their Shopify store with other systems

Read more: What is a headless CMS?

Increased API Calls

Shopify Plus allows for more API calls, enabling high-volume merchants to manage large inventories efficiently, synchronize with external systems, and integrate with custom apps.

Advanced Shopify Apps 

Access exclusive apps designed for Shopify merchants, including Shopify Flow, Launchpad, and Scripts, to automate workflows, create unique shopping experiences, and customize your storefront and checkout.

Customizable checkout

Personalize the checkout process with your brand's unique styling and scripts to improve conversion rates and provide a seamless customer experience.

Dedicated support

Shopify Plus merchants benefit from dedicated support through the Merchant Success Program, offering guidance on leveraging Shopify Plus features to grow your business.

Shopify organization settings

Manage your business more efficiently with the Shopify Organization Admin, providing a centralized view of your stores, users, and workflows.

Shopify Plus Academy

Exclusive access to educational resources, tutorials, and training materials through the Shopify Plus Academy to help you and your team make the most of Shopify Plus.

Additional staff accounts

Shopify Plus plans include unlimited staff accounts, allowing you to provide access to your entire team without restrictions.

Shopify POS Pro

Access to Shopify POS Pro for all your locations at no additional charge, offering advanced features for brick-and-mortar stores.

Higher limits for gift cards and discounts

Create more gift cards and discounts to engage customers and drive sales, with higher limits exclusive to Shopify Plus merchants.

Pricing

FeatureBasic ShopifyShopifyAdvanced ShopifyShopify Plus
Monthly price$29$79$299Starting at $2,000
Staff accounts2515Unlimited
Inventory locationsUp to 4Up to 5Up to 8Up to 20
Online credit card rates2.9% + 30¢2.6% + 30¢2.4% + 30¢Negotiable
In-person credit card rates2.7% + 0¢2.5% + 0¢2.4% + 0¢Negotiable
Additional fees using all payment providers other than Shopify Payments2%1%0.5%None or negotiable
Shopify shipping discountUp to 64%Up to 72%Up to 74%Up to 74% or higher
ReportsBasicStandardAdvancedAdvanced + customizable
Third-party calculated shipping ratesAvailable for an additional feeIncludedIncludedIncluded
Dedicated supportEmail, live chat, phoneEmail, live chat, phoneEmail, live chat, phoneDedicated success manager
Advanced features---Shopify Flow, Launchpad, Scripts, etc.
CustomizationLimitedLimitedAdvancedExtensive, including checkout customization
FeatureMonthly price
Basic Shopify$29
Shopify$79
Advanced Shopify$299
Shopify PlusStarting at $2,000
FeatureStaff accounts
Basic Shopify2
Shopify5
Advanced Shopify15
Shopify PlusUnlimited
FeatureInventory locations
Basic ShopifyUp to 4
ShopifyUp to 5
Advanced ShopifyUp to 8
Shopify PlusUp to 20
FeatureOnline credit card rates
Basic Shopify2.9% + 30¢
Shopify2.6% + 30¢
Advanced Shopify2.4% + 30¢
Shopify PlusNegotiable
FeatureIn-person credit card rates
Basic Shopify2.7% + 0¢
Shopify2.5% + 0¢
Advanced Shopify2.4% + 0¢
Shopify PlusNegotiable
FeatureAdditional fees using all payment providers other than Shopify Payments
Basic Shopify2%
Shopify1%
Advanced Shopify0.5%
Shopify PlusNone or negotiable
FeatureShopify shipping discount
Basic ShopifyUp to 64%
ShopifyUp to 72%
Advanced ShopifyUp to 74%
Shopify PlusUp to 74% or higher
FeatureReports
Basic ShopifyBasic
ShopifyStandard
Advanced ShopifyAdvanced
Shopify PlusAdvanced + customizable
FeatureThird-party calculated shipping rates
Basic ShopifyAvailable for an additional fee
ShopifyIncluded
Advanced ShopifyIncluded
Shopify PlusIncluded
FeatureDedicated support
Basic ShopifyEmail, live chat, phone
ShopifyEmail, live chat, phone
Advanced ShopifyEmail, live chat, phone
Shopify PlusDedicated success manager
FeatureAdvanced features
Basic Shopify-
Shopify-
Advanced Shopify-
Shopify PlusShopify Flow, Launchpad, Scripts, etc.
FeatureCustomization
Basic ShopifyLimited
ShopifyLimited
Advanced ShopifyAdvanced
Shopify PlusExtensive, including checkout customization

Choosing a Shopify Plus consultant

Chances are that you need a consultant if you’re looking to go Plus. Consulting with an agency can be a game-changer, especially if you don’t want to go blindly into the wilderness. 

Experts like us offer tailored advice, strategic planning, technical expertise, and team extension services to ensure your eCommerce platform aligns with your business goals and scales effectively. 

Here’s how engaging with a Shopify Plus Consultant can benefit your business and the key aspects of this collaboration.

1. Strategic planning 

  • Business analysis: A Shopify Plus Consultant begins by analyzing your current eCommerce operations, identifying areas for improvement, and understanding your long-term business objectives.

  • Strategy development: Based on the analysis, the consultant develops a customized strategy encompassing platform migration, optimization, and growth planning, ensuring it aligns with your business goals.

2. Technical expertise and implementation

  • Platform customization and integration: Consultants provide expertise in customizing your Shopify Plus store, from theme development to integrating third-party apps and services that extend the functionality of your eCommerce platform.

  • Migration assistance: For businesses migrating to Shopify Plus, consultants can oversee the data transfer, ensuring a smooth transition of product data, customer information, and historical orders.

3. Optimization and performance enhancement

  • Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO): By analyzing user behavior and store performance data, consultants identify opportunities to enhance the shopping experience, aiming to improve conversion rates and average order value.

  • SEO and marketing strategies: Consultants can also advise on SEO best practices and digital marketing strategies to increase your store's visibility and drive targeted traffic.

Closing words: Is Shopify Plus the right choice?

Shopify Plus is a solid choice for companies reaching a certain size and eyeing further expansion. It's more than just an eCommerce platform; it's a partnership to nurture growth, spark innovation, and ensure lasting success.

Yet, for smaller ventures or those with straightforward needs, the basic Shopify plans often hit the mark, offering the essentials without needing the heftier investment that Shopify Plus demands. 

Simply put, Shopify Plus is worth considering if your business has outgrown the basic Shopify offerings and you're searching for a platform to elevate your growth with more advanced tools, better scalability, and personalized support. 

However, don’t go blind and spend your money on Plus just because you feel like it. Opting for Plus should come after careful consideration of your business's unique requirements and the added value it could contribute to your online operations.

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