Shopify is a fantastic option for those who are expanding their business online. However, choosing the right Shopify plan for your business can be a little tricky.
Your overall monthly subscription cost is largely influenced by payment processing fees. Furthermore there are additional variables to consider, such as additional store features, inventory management systems, omnichannel marketing, and of course, the overall site design.
Confused? Fret not. This article will cover the five Shopify plans and important additional costs to keep in mind.
How Much is Shopify?
Shopify offers five plans to suit different business needs and budgets. Since it is intended as a one-stop eCommerce solution, the costs involved are also more than your average web hosting or site builder-based platforms. For most people, their mainstream plans – Basic Shopify or Shopify (Regular), are what you want to be looking towards.
Shopify Monthly Subscription & Transaction Fees
Shopify charges on a fixed monthly subscription plus additional fees per transaction. Here is the breakdown for all five plans.
|Transaction Fees||5% + $0.30||2.9% + $0.30||2.6% + $0.30||2.4% + $0.30||Contact Shopify|
For more details, compare features of each Shopify plan here.
Shopify Payment Processing Fees
It's important to note that Shopify comes with its own payment gateway (Shopify Payments) and supports over 100 other third-party payment gateways around the globe.
There will be no additional charges added if you are using Shopify Payments to process credit card payments on your online store. However, for third-party payment processing, additional processing fees will be applied according to the plan you subscribed.
It’s important to note that if you use Shopify Payments (Shopify’s own payment gateway, which is included in all plans), you won’t be charged any additional payment processing. However for third-party payment gateways (ie. Alipay, Skrill, BitPay, WeChat Pay etc), additional processing fees may applied.
Payment Processing Fees for Different Shopify Plans
- Basic Shopify – Additional 2% processing fees
- Shopify (Regular) – Additional 1% processing fees
- Advanced Shopify – Additional 0.5% processing fees
- Shopify Plus – Contact Shopify for negotiation
How to Choose: Which Shopify Plan is for Me?
When considering which Shopify plan is right for you – a good place to start is with the pricing plan list shown on Shopify Pricing Page.
If you look closely – there are only a few key differences between the three main Shopify plans. They aer: The subscription and transaction fees, number of staff accounts, store automations, shipping rates calculator, reporting, and duties & import tax calculator.
Here are my recommendations for each plan.
1. Shopify Starter Plan
Shopify Starter pricing: $5/mo, plus 5% and 30¢ per transaction.
Shopify Starter is not like the other Shopify plan – it doesn't come with the online store builder. What you get from Shopify Starter is the essence of Shopify – the payment and inventory management system.
Shopify Starter is a good choice if:
- You already have an existing website and wish to use Shopify to process customer payments.
- You wish to sell your products via emails or social media platforms (FB, Instagram, Twitter, etc).
2. Shopify Basic Plan
Shopify Basic pricing: $19/mo, plus 2.9% and 30¢ per transaction.
Shopify Basic rings the till at $19 per month and marks the starting price for Shopify's regular plans. With Basic, you are getting a complete website builder with eCommerce support and extensive integration compatibility with multiple other channels. Transaction fees are cheaper in comparison to Shopify Starter (2.9% vs 5%) but slightly higher than Shopify Regular (2.9% vs 2.6%).
Shopify Starter is a good choice if:
- You are just starting out and wish to build an online store.
- Your online business revenue is below $10,000 per month.
- You are looking to sell in only one country for now.
- You are managing the online store yourself or with not more than 2 staffs.
3. Shopify (Regular) Plan
Shopify pricing: $49/mo, plus 2.6% and 30¢ per transaction.
Shopify plan is for growing businesses that plan to use Shopify to manage their online store and sales process.
Shopify (Regular) is a good choice if:
- You need more than 3 staff accounts and looking for some sorts of automation to speed up your sales process.
- You can get by without showing complex shipping or tax & import duties calculations during customer checkout.
- It's overall cheaper than Shopify Basic after adding in the transaction fees (details below).
Transaction Fees: Shopify Basic vs Shopify Regular
When it comes to deciding between Shopify Basic and Regular – the transaction fees is often the ultimate factor. The overall fees you pay to Shopify monthly is heavily affected by your business revenue and the average value of your sales.
Let me explain.
- Basic Shopify: With this plan, you will be charged a transaction fee of 2.9% + 30 cents for online credit card transactions.
- Shopify: With this plan, the transaction fee for online credit card transactions is 2.6% + 30 cents.
In other words, if you are making more sales, then Shopify (Regular) is likely the better plan for you. Rough calculation – if your business is making more than $10,000 a month – it's cheaper to subscribe to Shopify Regular plan instead.
For your references, I made some calculations for different scenarios below.
|No. of Sales||Revenue||Basic Shopify||Regular Shopify|
- For Basic Shopify: $19 + $(0.029 * Revenue) + $(0.3 * number of sales)
- For Regular Shopify: $49 + $(0.026 * Revenue) + $(0.3 * number of sales)
4. Shopify Advanced Plan
Shopify Advanced pricing: $299/mo, plus 2.4% and 30¢ per transaction.
Shopify Advanced plan is mainly for established businesses that are selling internationally. In term of features – the main differences between Shopify Advanced with other lower plans are:
- Advanced reporting
- Support up to 15 staff accounts
- Shipping and tax & import duties calculators included
If these look like the features you need – then Shopify Advanced is for you.
5. Shopify Plus
Shopify Plus pricing: $2,000/mo and above.
Shopify Plus is for high-volume businesses with complex needs. It offers a number of additional benefits you can't get with other lower Shopify plans such as lower transaction fees, dedicated supports, and custom checkout expereince.
To find out more about Shopify Plus and its particular pricing, you will need to contact and talk to a Shopify representative.
Other Shopify Costs to Consider
There are additional cost that you need to consider when you are building an online store and hosting it with Shopify. Some of the important factors that you may have overlooked in the past are discussed below.
Pricing range: Free – $400 one-time fee.
To build a convincing online store – you need a professional designed theme. Shopify offers a ton of built-in templates in their themes directory – some are free; while some, usually the more complex ones, cost $200 – $400 to use.
Alternatively, you can also build your own themes with its own functionalities. Shopify uses Liquid, an open-source template language in Ruby, to create their themes.
Pricing range: Free – $200/year.
In addition to what Shopify offers as default features, you might need a custom functions (ie. social media or email marketing tools, website translation, etc) for your online store. To achieve this, Shopify users usually rely on Shopify App to get other useful add-ons (either free or paid).
At this point of writing, there are over 1,200 apps available in Shopify App Store. The wide range of apps that Shopify has to offer makes them one of the more versatile eCommerce platform in the market.
Shopify Point-of-Sale (POS)
Pricing range: Free – $89/mo per location
All Shopify Basic plans and above come with Shopify POS Lite – which is a point-of-sale system designed for businesses that use Shopify as their e-commerce platform. The POS system allows merchants to sell products in-person using a tablet or mobile device and manage their customer profiles.
However if you want more – the company also offers Shopify Pro, which support unlimited store staff and store registers, in-store analytics, smart inventory management, and scalability up top 1,000 locations.
Pricing range: Send 10,000 emails per month for free, $1 for every 1,000 emails thereafter.
If you do not wish to use a third party email marketing tools like Constant Contact or MailChimp – Shopify Email allows you to send up to 10,000 automated emails for free every month. Thereafter, you will have to pay $1 for every 1,000 emails sent – which is a reasonable price compared to other tools in market.
The lowest tier in Shopify plans with a website builder clocks in at $19/mo – which isn’t cheap for web hosting or a website builder. However, if you are looking to grow your online presence and grab a slice of the lucrative online eCommerce market – Shopify offers flexibility and the ability to get it done quickly.
For those who are still unsure – the company now offers 3-day free trial with no credit card info needed. Further on that, if you subscribe to Shopify (Regular) now, you only pay $1/mo for the first three months. Make use of these deals to discover which Shopify plan is right for you.