Looking for a Shopify vs Shopify Plus guide? This is exactly the post you’d want to read.
Both Shopify standard and Shopify Plus are jampacked with useful features. While former is good for most of the eCommerce stores, later offers scalability features you’d definitely like.
In this post, I’m going to be comparing every useful feature offered by Shopify Plus that makes it better than Shopify Plus; and help you decide the right platform for your store.
But before we get started, here is a comparison table for Shopify Plus vs Shopify:
|1||Introduction||Shopify offers different plans from basic to advanced for starting an online boutique.||Shopify Plus is a more sophisticated plan for bigger brands.|
|2||Best for||Shopify is best for small-to-mid sized businesses, startups, and new dropshippers.||Shopify Plus is designed for inventory stores and large enterprises.|
|3||Standout features||You will have access to plenty of marketing tools, thousands of useful built-in apps, and exclusive APIs.||You will get all Shopify Standard features + automation, globalization, B2B like D2C and headless eCommerce.|
|4||Staff accounts||You can set up to 15 staff accounts and free SSL certification.||The Plus plan allows unlimited staff accounts and custom checkout SSL certificates.|
|5||Multilingual store||Shopify helps you set up a store with a specific language. You can later translate it manually.||Shopify Plus offers store cloning with a multi-currency interface for multilingual eCommerce.|
|6||Performance||Shopify needs to be optimized for performance and speed.||Shopify Plus is pre-optimized for performance with guaranteed 99.98% uptime.|
|7||Support||Shopify has a 24/7 support system, but no store growth managers||Shopify Plus provides a dedicated launch manager and a merchant success manager, in addition to round the clock support.|
|8||Who use it?||It is used by fairly new brands and beginners.||It is used by brands like Tesla, Nestle and more.|
|9.||Get Started||Shopify||Shopify Plus|
Shopify vs Shopify Plus: Introduction
Shopify is a dedicated eCommerce solution for creating an online store. You can use it for creating different types of online stores – print on demand, dropshipping, and inventory – with ease. Additionally, Shopify can also be used for selling on Facebook or in person.
Shopify Plus is a cost-effective enterprise-level solution for merchants selling high volumes, or for creating multi-channel eCommerce stores. It is especially helpful if you want to set up a separate store interface for wholesale and B2B customer chains.
Shopify Plus: Is it worth the investment?
Shopify Plus is going to cost you much more than a basic plan, so the first thing to know is if it’s worth the investment. Here are some of the most important benefits you would get with the Shopify Plus plan.
1. Exposure to international eCommerce
Translation and localization are some of the best ways to grow your sales, but no one talks about the nitty-gritty. Simply translating the product description isn’t enough. You need to create a localized experience by changing different elements of the product page, and this is where Shopify Plus comes into action.
Shopify Plus helps the user target a much larger audience by creating multilingual versions of the same store. You can perform store cloning and re-create 8+ web stores for targeting international audiences from the UK, AU, and many other countries. Every version will have a local language and currency.
You can easily connect with the Shopify API inventory management system for handling global operations. You can save the heavy development and additional theme charges for translating the front end of your store by simply choosing a Plus merchant plan.
2. Automated growth and streamlined UX
Shopify Plus allows you to automate everything, so you can focus your efforts on marketing. For instance, you can use Launchpad for automating future flash sales and campaigns.
You can tag and segment your customers based on their buying behavior to perform different marketing strategies to retain them. You can also automate the inventory management for updates on low-stock products.
If you have a loyalty program, you can set up conditions for rewarding them based on their lifetime spend. There are also conditions that can help you monitor high-risk orders. In short, you can set up a custom workflow for better organization and management. With Shopify Plus eCommerce automation, you can easily integrate the apps without learning code.
The best part is, you can streamline the customer experience for recommending relevant products, promoting upcoming sales, and mentioning special discounts.
3. Easy to set up B2B, B2C, and D2C channels
Just so you don’t get confused, the business to business model (wholesale) is where you sell your products in bulk to another business. The business to consumer approach is where you sell products to other retailers to further sell it to their consumers. And the millennial’s favorite, the D2C approach, is where you sell the products directly to consumers.
Now, D2C is good if you have a dropshipping store, but if you have a good inventory, you can use Shopify Plus to tap into other marketplaces.
Shopify Plus allows you to set up a separate wholesale channel that matches your brand. You can use that to offer custom prices, discounts, and volume-based settings to your B2B customers.
And while the wholesale eCommerce will be automated, you will still have the chance to review the wholesale orders before invoicing, keeping everything under control. You can even create custom terms for them.
This way, you can offer your B2B customers a D2C-like interface. Wholesale chain flexibility is further accompanied by PCI DSS compliance and sales tax management integration – Avalara. Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) is a security-standard for organizations handling card details. Shopify Plus is highly compliant with these information security standards, which helps in setting up a more trustworthy brand in front of different channels.
Many big brands like Tesla and Nestle use the Shopify Plus plan, which makes it clear that the store is fully secure.
Merchants on Shopify are required to confirm a set of standards for security audits and server vulnerability checks. Shopify Plus is a safe and secure platform that you can go for without being skeptical.
4. Powerful APIs for faster scalability and performance
Shopify Plus can effectively handle peak orders on your online store (it can efficiently manage over 10,000 orders a minute). The Shopify enterprise-level plan offers standardized APIs for improving the integration and reporting process.
Plus API integrates with customer relationship management software, enterprise resource planning software, inventory management software, and other third-party integrations. This means you can add tools like Netsuite, Microsoft Navision, and many more without a single line of code. Shopify Plus offers boosted performance via unlimited API calls (note that this feature is limited in a standard Shopify plan), thus improving the overall scalability.
Performance-wise, it has a fully hosted cloud solution with a guaranteed 99.98% uptime and unlimited bandwidth. This means you don’t have to worry about performance optimization. There is an integrated content delivery network to ensure good, fast user experience.
5. Ample customization for headless eCommerce
I have already mentioned the ease of usage provided by Shopify Plus, but customization and simplicity are the features Shopify Plus is really known for. Subscribers can easily manage their store without any coding knowledge. Shopify Plus offers SDKs (software development kits) for building custom solutions for your store, like customized reports and mobile apps. You can accelerate your site performance and perform A/B testing on different devices.
You can offer a tailormade, faster checkout to your customers for focused user experience. Also, the credit card fee is 2.15% instead of 2.90%, allowing you to offer discounts or gift cards at checkout.
6. Dedicated merchant support
In addition to 24/7 Shopify support, the Plus plan offers two dedicated managers for your store
a. Dedicated launch manager – The role of a Launch Manager is to educate merchants, share best practices, launch your store, and provide training on using the Shopify Plus platform. A launch manager will help you migrate from your old store and help with the development of your eCommerce store.
b. Dedicated success manager – The merchant success manager will provide ongoing expertise and strategic consultancy to help you grow your store. Merchant success managers will provide API support and keep you updated with the latest marketing practices, Shopify SEO, analytics, and industry-specific trends.
You will also have unlimited staff accounts with Shopify Plus.
Shopify Standard: Quick walkthrough
Shopify is good for those who are just starting up their online store, either with an inventory or planning to test dropshipping products.
Shopify standard has a slightly higher credit card fee. You will also miss out on multi-currency and other features. The standard plan is targeted towards dropshipping features. There are thousands of apps for customization, unlimited storage, and a 14-day free trial.
Unlike Shopify Plus, Shopify doesn’t promise a 99.98% guaranteed uptime. Also, you won’t have a pre-optimized backend with features like integrated CDN for faster checkout and better performance. You’d have to spend some cash on development to customize and use external tools to optimize your Shopify standard’s performance.
The staff accounts are limited, but again this isn’t something you’d require as a beginner eCommerce store. The support team provides online support via phone, email, or live chat.
In a nutshell, you can use Shopify standard plans to create a highly profitable dropshipping store, or a print on demand business. Shopify is definitely the best choice for eCommerce beginners.
Shopify Plus vs. Shopify: Pricing
There’s a huge pricing difference between Shopify and Shopify Plus, which is mainly because of the abundant (and important) scalability features we mentioned above.
Shopify Plus starts at $2,000 per month and grows based on your sales. It will charge you around 1/4th of your income (if the 1/4th of your income is greater than $2k). Otherwise, $2,000 per month is their minimum cost.
Also, the pricing benefit you will get with Shopify Plus is that the transaction fee is only 0.2% instead of 2% for payments on your store made by external payment providers.
On the flip side, Shopify Standard has three pricing plans with a 14-day free trial (currently 90-day due to the Corona pandemic).
- Basic Shopify – $29 per month
- Shopify – $79 per month
- Advanced Shopify – $299 per month
This pricing is based on additional features like more staff accounts, less transaction fees, advanced reports, third-party calculated shipping rates, and lower credit card charges.
Shopify or Shopify Plus: Which is the best choice?
That was my take on Shopify plus and Shopify Standard. Feel free to drop me an email if you are confused about your options, but here’s the bottom line to help you choose the right platform:
Choose Shopify if – you are a beginner with no experience or if you have very few products in your store. You can use marketing strategies and work on building your brand. Shopify basic also offers a free 14-day trial, so you can test your strategies and see how well the audience responds to your products. Shopify is the right choice for small-to-mid-sized dropshipping stores.
Choose Shopify Plus if – you have a high traffic influx or if your store is already generating good revenue and you want to scale it to a wider audience base. Shopify Plus is an enterprise-level solution used by popular brands like Tesla.
Thanks for reading. Share your thoughts via the comment section below.