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Shopify Plus Review

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Date Established
2014
Location
Ottawa, ON Canada

Pros

  • Suited for large businesses
  • Excellent customer support
  • Scalable
  • Attractive design templates

Cons

  • Add-ons often necessary
  • Limited features
  • Expensive monthly cost

Overview

Founded in 2006, Shopify is a big name in eCommerce. In just fourteen years, it has grown from a company of two to over 3,000 employees. Shopify, as a whole, has dealt in $55 billion in sales, and 600,000 businesses use Shopify for their online stores. Shopify Plus itself hosts over 3,600 merchants currently.

Shopify Plus is the “white-glove” enterprise (read: swanky) version of Shopify, intended to take the hassle out of running an online business. It handles the “online” part of your online business, so you can take care of more important things. With Shopify Plus you have unlimited bandwidth and your very own Merchant Success Manager at your disposal. Say goodbye to sweating over difficult code; Shopify Plus’s team of experts have got you covered.

Needless to say, Shopify Plus is not cheap, nor is it intended for small businesses or start-ups. Shopify Plus is specifically geared toward large companies. Not just, “I have over five employees” big, but “I rake in over $500K a year” big.

If you find yourself in the first category, you might consider one of Shopify’s basic offerings. Check out our full review of Shopify for more information.

But, if you’re a big fish in the eCommerce pond, keep reading to learn more about Shopify Plus’s unique features.

Contact Shopify Plus For Pricing

 

Pricing

Pricing for merchants on Shopify Plus is either $2,000 USD per month or 0.25% of eligible platform transactions, whichever is higher. For example, if you sell $900,000 of merchandise in a month, your fee for that month will be $2,250 ($900,000 x 0.25% = $2,250), but if you sell $500,000, your fee will be $2,000 ($500,000 x 0.25% = $1,250). Pricing adjusts each month based on these calculations.

Those “eligible platform transactions” are the net value of any online or POS transactions that you process through your Shopify store and do not include any imported orders.

Also, if you choose to process payments through a third-party payment gateway, you will be charged an additional 0.15% transaction fee. This transaction fee will be waived if you choose to use Shopify Payments for your payments instead (read our review of Shopify Payments for pros and cons).

Contact Shopify Plus For Pricing

Web-Based Or Locally-Installed

Shopify Plus is cloud-based, fully hosted software.

Hardware & Software Requirements

Because Shopify Plus is web-based, all you need is a decent computer and a reliable, up-to-date web browser.

Specific Size Of Business

Again, Shopify Plus is designed for large, high volume companies. If you’re dealing in over $500K a year, Shopify Plus could be for you.

Current clients include Bombas, Death Wish Coffee, Leesa, and Chubbies. You could say it’s a big deal.

Ease Of Use

Shopify Plus is elegant, simple, and easy to navigate.

You can test out the software with a free 14-day trial, no credit card required. All you have to do is enter some contact information and answer a few questions about your store, and they’ll set you up with a trial account.

Although there was no beginner’s tutorial to get me started (which was, admittedly, kind of a bummer) it wasn’t a huge deal because, as it turns out, the Shopify dashboard is a thing of beauty.

All of the most important features (orders, products, customer records, analytics, discounts, apps) can easily be found in the dashboard’s sidebar. Other settings, like payment methods, adjustments to the checkout page (including language selection), tax and shipping settings, and email notifications, can be found at the bottom of the sidebar under (you guessed it) “Settings.”

Adding a product takes only a few clicks.

You can use Shopify’s discount features to create specific discounts that apply to an individual product or category. You can also set limits to those discounts so that they can be used only a certain number of times or at a certain price point. ‘Buy One Get One’ discount features are also now available.

As a whole, Shopify’s dashboard does an excellent job. If you can use a WordPress dashboard or even a Facebook account, you can operate a Shopify store.

Features

On top of the basic features, including Shopify’s own payment gateway and multiple available sales channels, Shopify Plus boasts some pretty impressive capabilities:

  • Unlimited Selling Capacity: Shopify Plus does not penalize successful enterprises. You’ll have unlimited bandwidth and unlimited sales and can list an unlimited amount of products.
  • Reliability: Shopify Plus’s servers experience 99.98% uptime.
  • Scalability: Your site will have the ability to handle fluctuations in traffic and grow as your business grows.
  • Smooth Setup: Most sites are up and running within months  (90-120 days on average).
  • Multichannel Capabilities: You can sell on over 20 channels in addition to your own site, including major social networks and marketplaces.
  • Automations: Use Shopify’s easy-to-implement automation tool, Shopify Flow, to streamline your daily processes. Also, look into Shopify Plus’s tools to automate campaigns and flash sales.
  • Globalization: Make your site available worldwide by enabling multiple languages and currencies. In addition, you can list your products on international marketplaces. Use integrations with international warehouses and fulfillment services to distribute your wares.
  • Wholesale & B2B Features: Shopify provides many features for selling wholesale, including password access for your storefront, fixed price lists, volume-based discounts, and minimum and maximum quantity increments.
  • Point Of Sale: Use Shopify’s POS to sell in-person and at pop-up shops. This feature is available to all Shopify users, not just Shopify Plus users.
  • Guaranteed Priority Customer Service: More on this in the Customer Service section of this review.

Contact Shopify Plus For Pricing

Web Design

Shopify’s themes feature mobile responsive design—absolutely critical in the current market. More and more sales are coming from mobile devices, and your site needs to look just as good on a smartphone or tablet as it does on a full computer screen.

There are 64 themes to choose from (ten of them free), and they’re easily customizable.

To customize those themes, you can use Shopify’s drag and drop editor, called “Sections.” Sections allows you to customize themes with fewer restrictions to better match your original idea for your store; it is currently available with select Shopify themes.

If you’re looking for even more design versatility, you’ll need to get into your storefront’s code. Shopify uses its own templating language called Liquid. You can also edit HTLM, CSS, and JavaScript.

Finally, if you’re looking for something a little more unique (but you don’t have the web skills necessary), you can hire a Shopify Expert to design for you.

Integrations & Add-Ons

Shopify Plus integrates easily with many ERP, CRM, and accounting systems. If your system requires a little more work to connect, Shopify Plus will help source a custom connection.

There are over 1500 apps available, but if you still need more, your developers can use Shopify Plus’s REST API to build your own.

Payment Processing

Shopify Plus is compatible with over 100 payment gateways, including:

  • PayPal
  • Authorize.Net
  • 2Checkout
  • First Data
  • Amazon Payments

You’ll also have the option to use Shopify’s own gateway, Shopify Payments. You may benefit from reduced transaction rates if you qualify for Shopify Payments.

Customer Service & Technical Support

Customer service is where Shopify Plus really excels. While all Shopify clients receive 24/7 support, Shopify Plus clients get priority service.

Every Shopify Plus client is assigned their very own Merchant Success Manager. This Shopify representative advocates on your behalf to get the features you want, helps you activate new sales channels, and strategizes with you to help reach your business goals. They are your direct line to Shopify support.

If your own Merchant Success Manager is for some reason unavailable, you will be put in contact with another Merchant Success Manager. If you’re too shy to talk to a real person (believe me, I get it), there are eCommerce Forums and technical advice in the Help Center. And, of course, there’s always someone available via live chat or email.

To contact Shopify, you can shoot them an email or give them a ring. I’ve found that calling gets a faster response.

  • Phone (US): 1-888-816-3857

Negative Reviews & Complaints

While Shopify’s general services have received plenty of complaints, Shopify Plus has gotten very few. I conjecture that this is due to the excellent customer service provided at this level of support: If a Shopify Plus client has a problem, it’s likely resolved at higher levels than an online complaint board.

I recommend you take a look into our Shopify review to see a few of the complaints that that are commonly directed at Shopify as a company. For more Shopify Plus specific complaints, see below:

  • Limited Features: Shopify’s general philosophy is to provide you with the core features you need to start and run an online store. You’ll need to use add-ons to develop any advanced features you may need. Costs for those add-ons can quickly add up.
  • Limited Customizability: Although you are able to change many aspects of your Shopify storefront and backend, Shopify is not an open-source solution. Therefore, you will not be able to change every nitty-gritty detail of your store. Many larger merchants who are accustomed to open-source shopping carts are frustrated by these limitations.
  • Limited Number Of Variants: When you are listing an item, that item can only have up to 100 variants. In this case, “variant” refers to a particular aspect of the item that your customer can select. Color, size, and length would all be variants. 100 sure sounds like a big number, but if I offer six colors of an item in six sizes with six variations of length, that’s 216 variants. So, it all multiplies rather quickly. However, I have been guaranteed by a customer service rep that there’s an app to expand the number of variants allowed.

Positive Reviews & Testimonials

There are many client testimonials available on Shopify Plus’s website. You can also find positive reviews from real customers by searching phrases like “Shopify Plus Reviews” and “Shopify Plus Pros Cons.” Here are some things they have in common:

  • Easy To Learn & Teach: Shopify’s biggest appeal is ease of use, and this remains true for Shopify Plus. That means, your admin panel will be easy to teach to new recruits.
  • Good Support: Shopify Plus users seem satisfied with the level of customer support they are able to access.
  • Scalability: Shopify Plus’s ability to handle large influxes of orders is a huge bonus. Companies attest to the benefits of scalability during Black Friday, Cyber Monday, the holiday season in general, and new product releases. They know their shops won’t crash because of high traffic.
  • API For Customization: Using Shopify Plus’s API, developers are able to build apps for Shopify’s backend in order to meet the specific needs of a company.

Security

Shopify Plus is Level 1 PCI DSS compliant (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard), which is the gold standard for eCommerce. They run risk management and make security assessments on a regular basis.

Final Verdict

On the whole, I’m impressed with Shopify Plus. There are very few negatives to the service, and most of these can be solved with an app. Shopify’s reliable customer service, ability to scale to a large company’s needs, and customizability make any store owner’s life a whole lot easier.

While the price of these services would clearly overwhelm a smaller store, for a company with hundreds of thousands in revenue, Shopify Plus may actually save money. With the ability to handle more traffic comes the ability to make more sales and ultimately to grow into an even larger and more successful business.

If you’ve outgrown your previous software provider, take a look at Shopify Plus. Try out the software, contact a sales representative, and see if it’s right for you.

Contact Shopify Plus For Pricing

Liz Hull

Liz Hull

Liz Hull is an eCommerce Writer for Merchant Maverick. In her two years with Merchant Maverick, she has tested and reviewed over 40 eCommerce platforms and published two ebooks on the topic of online selling. Liz has also been published in Startup Nation and Home Business Magazine Online. Liz has a BA in English and Spanish from George Fox University.
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