15 KEY DIFFERENCES BETWEEN SHOPIFY AND SHOPIFY PLUS

November 4, 2021
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Emmanuel Umukoro

People looking to start small or medium scale businesses online will find categories of Shopify useful, but if your business is at the enterprise level making millions in sales, you might prefer a more personalized experience. That's where Shopify Plus comes in.


Although Shopify Plus has a similar basic dashboard and functionalities as Shopify, it offers you more access to your store's underlying code, features, integrations, specialized support, and more.


Simply put, Shopify is for people who want to start a small or medium business, and Shopify Plus is for people who want to start large businesses. 


Shopify Plus includes everything in the standard Shopify package plus extra. In this article, we'll focus on the extra features that come with Shopify Plus so you can understand the difference between Shopify and Shopify Plus, as well as the advantage of one over the other.


15 KEY ENHANCEMENT OF SHOPIFY PLUS OVER SHOPIFY

1. Multi-store Features

Creating separate Shopify clone stores is a viable solution to global expansion since it allows merchants to set local prices and equip each store for the target region independently. The ability to organically rank each store locally and have an independent shopping feed, among other things, would make the store more effective from a marketing standpoint.


Local delivery alternatives, duties and taxes, local payment choices (such as Alipay, Union Pay, WeChat Pay in China for instance), and so on can all be presented right away. This is a feature that attracts those looking to sell internationally to Shopify Plus but is sadly unavailable to basic Shopify plan users. 


2. Multi-currency Feature

The multi-currency option in Shopify lets your customers shop in their local currency that will be displayed based on their IP address or if they change their it from a dropdown. The currency will be displayed on the front end as well as in all other areas of your store as long as you're utilizing the right third parties. You can accept payment in this currency as well.


And most importantly, the multi-currency option gives you a lot of currencies to choose from and constantly adds more.


The Multi-store and Multi-currency options are great upgrades to the Shopify Plus platform and although both are similar, each has its advantages over the other as well as its limitation.


3. Unlimited Staff Access

The amount of staff users you may have on your store on non-Plus Shopify versions is limited — which might be a huge deal, especially during development. A  typical Shopify Plus project involves access from about five people from the client's team, numerous people from the development agency, an SEO resource, any third parties handling any integration, and any other consultants, among other things. It's easy to see how rapidly this adds up.


On the lower Shopify plans, you're limited to 1, 2, and 5 accounts, which isn't nearly enough for a Shopify Plus build. Shopify Advanced is good because it limits you to 15 staff accounts, but when you upgrade to Shopify Plus, this number increases to infinite. 


4. Dedicated Merchant Success Manager

Usually, Shopify provides support to its users through email, phone, and live chat. And when things get difficult, merchants can hire Shopify Experts.


On the other hand, Shopify Plus merchants are assigned a Merchant Success Manager as part of their Shopify Plus license, who is responsible for assisting the merchant in using Shopify Plus and getting the most out of the platform.


Although most merchants rely on their consultants rather than assigned Shopify Plus managers, they can help answer concerns about the platform and raise issues with people higher up in Shopify.


5. Checkout Customization

Although the Shopify checkout is well-known for being locked-down and inflexible which is not a bad idea, Shopify Plus users have access to the checkout, which allows them to customize more than users on other Shopify plans.


This gives room for scripting, custom messaging, and broader styling among other things, and can be quite handy for users that need to throw in extra functionality, such as custom fields or options.


6. Merchants Success Program

Shopify Plus has a Merchant Success Program that helps users get the most value out of the platform.   They can assist you with third-party integrations, products, and platforms, as well as training to help you maximize your potential.


Aside from providing round-the-clock assistance, the staff is eager to assist you in locating approved Shopify Plus Partners to keep you up to date on industry trends and assist with events such as flash sales.


7. Shopify Script

Although the Shopify checkout is well-known for being locked-down and inflexible which is not a bad idea, Shopify Plus users have access to the checkout, which allows them to customize more than users on other Shopify plans.


This gives room for scripting, custom messaging, and broader styling among other things, and can be quite handy for users that need to throw in extra functionality, such as custom fields or options. You can easily adjust delivery methods, customer information, and payment options in the Script Editor, which offers you more control. But with basic Shopify, you'll need special tools or apps to modify these experiences.


8. Shopify Plus Launchpad

Shopify launchpad is a Shopify tool that allows only Shopify Plus users to schedule different administrative tasks in advance. This is a critical feature for many merchants, and it's an added value for merchants switching to the platform because it's so stable and reliable.


9. Wholesale Channels

As your business grows, you'll undoubtedly attract consumers who want to buy in bulk, and with an enterprise-level platform, it's important to make wholesale easy for them.


This Shopify Plus feature helps you offer wholesale buyers special wholesale-only products or the same products at exclusive wholesale prices. It allows Shopify Plus merchants to send invoices, track orders, use current product data and integrations, and manage both B2C and B2B enterprises from a single dashboard. You can also provide personalized pricing lists or discount codes. 


It also allows merchants provide personalized pricing list or discount codes and it’s primary features includes:


  • Customer-specific payment options


  • Draft payments + credit limits


  • Ability to set purchasing limits etc


  • Support for tiered pricing


  • Customer-specific pricing


  • Customer-specific product availability


  • Restricted access, stripped-back wholesale store


  • Easy to assign access to specific customers and groups of customers


10. Broader Analytics

Shopify has a detailed analytics dashboard where you can see information like best-selling items, sales, landing pages or referrers, and more. You'll be able to get the most up-to-date information on your store even with a basic Shopify plan.


While this may seem sufficient for most businesses, Shopify Plus collaborates with prominent analytics organizations to keep you up to date on the newest trends in your store.


11. Exclusive Access to Resources and Communities

Users of Shopify Plus have access to more than just the Merchant Success Program. They can also use the following resources:



  • A Partner directory that gives merchants access to agency, technologies, and solution partners


  • Access to beta programs that are only available to Shopify Plus users.


  • It gives Plus Merchants access to curated tutorials on how to use the platform.


12. API Integrations

APIs are what allow third-party programs to be integrated with any website.


Shopify Plus features improved API resources such as GiftCard, User, and Multipass to help users get the most out of third-party apps.


Shopify Plus also allows you to interface with third-party apps and even create your own private apps.


13. Integration with Platforms

While you can connect an unlimited number of apps to your Shopify store, it may make more sense for high-growth and sophisticated enterprises to integrate with their existing platforms. Using Shopify's API, this is doable. Examples include platforms for:


  • Third-party logistics (3PL)


  • Warehouse management software (WMS)


  • Global fulfillment partner


  • Product information management (PIM)


  • Enterprise resource planning (ERP)


  • Inventory and order management (IMS and OMS)


  • Customer relationship management (CRM)


14. Shopify Flow

This enables rule-based automation of many types of operations or services, comes in handy for Shopify Plus users. It allows merchants to build an action based on a trigger and then variables, which could be anything from canceling an order to disabling a product to checking order dimensions to assigning a customer to a VIP group to even generating wholesale accounts.


Shopify Flow is very useful in automating manual activities, and Shopify Plus merchants will find it to be a useful feature. Some of the things you can do with it include:


  • Changes to ordering options based on product availability


  • Assigning customers to the wholesale channel


  • Assigning tags to orders for custom order flows


  • Fraud flagging on orders


  • Changes to the theme based on customer tags


You can use Shopify Flow with third-party applications, such as Chargezen, Klaviyo, Yotpo, and Loyalty Lion. This is only going to get better, and it's a great value-add for Plus subscribers.


15. Theme Customization using Liquid

You can modify your Shopify theme using the editor with Shopify's regular plans, but switching to an entirely different theme in the future will be difficult.


Shopify Plus, on the other hand, allows for extensive customization and gives you access to Liquid - Shopify's theme language. You'll be able to make modifications at the code level with Liquid in your toolbox, giving you more control.


IN SUMMARY

In summary, when it comes to the dashboard and basic e-commerce features, Shopify and Shopify Plus have similar offerings. The key difference between Shopify and Shopify Plus is that Shopify Plus provides a lot more support, access to the underlying codes, and the flexibility Merchants need to scale their businesses.


If you’re still not sure Shopify Plus is for you, follow this link and jump to “How Shopify Plus compares to other plans”. Seeing its functionalities in comparison to your business needs will help you make a decision between Shopify and Shopify Plus.


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