How Much Does It Cost to Start a Shopify Store?

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    Shopify stands out as one of the top choices for launching an online store with over 10% market share in the segment, thanks to its user-friendly features. Big brands like Kylie Cosmetics, Sephora, Nestle, and others have already embraced its potential.

    If you're thinking about the creation of your Shopify-powered web store, this article is your guide to understanding the Shopify costs involved. The experts from Emerline, a successful web portal development company specializing in Shopify web development services and E-commerce development solutions, shed light on the platform's opportunities and shared how to build an effective online store in 2023 and 2024.

    Shopify Plans and Their Costs

    The expense of starting a Shopify store is determined by the plan you select. With three distinct plan options, Shopify provides flexibility to accommodate a variety of business requirements.

    Basic Shopify plan

    The Basic Shopify plan is tailored for individuals and small businesses, and its price can vary by region. For example, in the USA, the cost is $39 per month. If you opt for an annual subscription, the cost is reduced to $29 per month.

    This plan ensures a robust foundation for your E-commerce venture thanks to features like:

    • An online store
    • Support for unlimited products
    • Two staff accounts
    • 24/7 customer support
    • Sales channels
    • Gift cards, and more.

    For each online credit card transaction, there's a fee of 2.9% plus 30 cents; for in-person credit card transactions, it's 2.7%. If you opt for a payment provider other than Shopify Payments, the fee is 2.0% of the sale.

    Shopify plan

    The Shopify plan is available at $105 per month (or $79 per month if paid annually). It encompasses all features from the Basic plan and introduces additional features, such as performance reports, support for up to five staff accounts, and the capability to facilitate gift card purchases.

    Furthermore, the Shopify fees for this plan are lower than the Basic plan, standing at 2.6% plus 30 cents per transaction. Additionally, the in-person card transaction fee is set at 2.5%, with no additional surcharge. 

    This plan is designed to provide enhanced capabilities for growing businesses, making it a cost-effective and efficient choice for those seeking a step up from the Basic Shopify plan.

    Advanced Shopify plan

    Geared towards businesses dealing in substantial product volumes, the Shopify Advanced plan is priced at $399 per month (or $299 per month when billed annually). This plan comes with the features of previous plans but offers some upgrades, for example, you can have up to 15 staff accounts. In addition, it boasts minimal transaction fees and introduces advanced shipping features like third-party calculated rates and a custom report builder.

    The third-party calculated shipping rate feature facilitates integration with external shipping providers, while the custom report builder provides a more extensive range of advanced reporting tools, aiding in the thorough tracking and analysis of your store's performance.

    Shopify offers a free trial for all plans, allowing you to explore its opportunities in real time and determine the best fit for your business. If none of the standard plans suit your needs, Shopify provides alternative solutions.

      Basic Shopify Shopify Advanced Shopify 
    Price per Month* $39 $105 $399
    Staff Access Number 2 5 15
    Inventory Locations (such as waterhourses, pop-ups, retail stories or anywhere else you store goods) Up to 4 Up to 5 Up to 8
    Reports - Standard Advanced
    Third-party Calculated Shipping Rates - - +
    Shipping Discount Up to 77% Up to 88% Up to 88%
    UPPS Priority Mail Cubic Pricing - - +
    International Domains - + +
    International Pricing - + +

     

    Shopify Starter and Plus

    Shopify Starter, with a monthly fee of $9, is the most affordable Shopify store launch plan. While it doesn't enable you to build a standalone store, the plan empowers you to seamlessly sell on existing social media and messaging apps, making it an ideal starting point for entrepreneurs entering the E-commerce space.

    On the other end of the spectrum is Shopify Plus, designed for large-scale enterprises. This plan includes all advanced plan features, along with time-saving automation, advanced security, multi-currency support, and third-party software integration capabilities.

    Shopify vs Other E-commerce Platforms

    Shopify has many competitors, for example, such prominent players as Magento, WooCommerce, BigCommerce, etc. However, for this comparison, we'll examine the pricing structures of BigCommerce and Wix, as they operate on a subscription-based model and target the same market segment as Shopify.

    Package Shopify BigCommerce Wix
    Starting plan $9 $16
    Basic plan $39 $39 $27
    Standard plan $105 $105 $32
    Advanced plan $399 $399 $159
    Enterprise plan Custom (starting from $2,000) Custom Custom

    When delving into the pricing and features of Shopify, BigCommerce, and Wix eCommerce, it's crucial to be aware of certain nuances that can significantly shape your choice of platform.

    Shopify vs. BigCommerce

    Both Shopify's Basic Shopify and BigCommerce's Standard plans are priced at $39 per month. BigCommerce's Standard plan offers robust features like professional reporting, built-in reviews, automatic currency conversion, and support for multiple storefronts. On the other hand, Shopify's Basic plan has the advantage of no sales limits and includes abandoned cart recovery even at the entry level, making it appealing for businesses seeking substantial growth.

    Wix vs. Shopify

    While Wix appears more affordable, starting at $27 per month, Shopify's Basic plan at $39 per month comes with integrated gift card features, eliminating the need for third-party apps — unlike Wix, which requires additional apps for the same functionality.

    Considering digital goods, Shopify's 5 GB file size limit surpasses Wix's 1 GB limit, and Shopify provides a more extensive range of real-time shipping options. However, the prices can change when additional costs come into play. 

    Shopify’s Additional Features and Their Costs

    Shopify offers various additional features and apps that users can integrate into their online stores to enhance functionality and meet the specific needs of business owners:

    Shopify apps

    The Shopify app store offers more than 6000 apps that cater to different needs, including marketing, customer service, inventory management, and more. The cost varies by app, with many free options and paid apps ranging in price. 

    Domain name

    Shopify enables users to register a domain name directly through its platform. The service starts at $14 for a 1-year registration.

    Email hosting

    Shopify now provides email hosting services, complete with user-friendly templates for effortless campaign management directly on the platform. Users can send up to 10,000 emails for free each month. Beyond this limit, the cost is $1 per 1,000 additional emails sent.

    Shopify themes

    Shopify offers a diverse range of themes to customize the appearance of online stores. Both free and premium themes are available, with premium themes priced between $140 and $350.

    Shopify POS

    Shopify POS (Point of Sale) allows businesses to sell in person through the Shopify POS app and compatible hardware. It has two plans: POS Lite, which is included in all Shopify plans, and POS Pro, which costs $89/month/location.

    Abandoned cart recovery

    Merchants can recover potentially lost sales through automated abandoned cart recovery features. The Standard Plan costs $19 per month and includes abandoned cart emails and exit pop-ups features. The Pro Plan costs $29 per month and enhances the Standard Plan with additional features like Facebook messenger reminders, priority support, and other features.

    What Should Businesses Pay Attention to When Choosing a Plan?

    When considering which Shopify plan is best for your business, it's essential to align your choice according to your specific needs and objectives.

    If you're just starting out and want to build your E-commerce site gradually, Shopify Basic is a suitable choice. This plan provides enough features for beginners to set up a shop, making it ideal for those selling a few products and starting their online journey.

    For businesses focusing on tracking sales and enhancing marketing strategies, the mid-tier Shopify plan is recommended. It offers reporting on customer actions, providing insights into consumer behavior to optimize marketing efforts and drive more sales.

    If your requirements include advanced features such as custom reporting and calculated shipping rates, the Shopify Advanced plan is the preferred option. This plan caters to businesses seeking more sophisticated tools to boost product sales.

     

    Bottom Line

    Shopify emerges as a premier choice for launching online stores, providing user-friendly features favored by industry giants. With plans tailored to diverse budgets and business scales, Shopify offers a robust foundation for beginners, enhanced features for growing enterprises, and advanced capabilities for large-scale operations.

    If you need personalized assistance in choosing the best platform for your needs, Emerline offers dedicated project managers, ensuring a seamless Shopify experience, particularly for those hesitating between Shopify and Advanced Shopify plans. Whether you're starting or thriving, Shopify, coupled with Emerline's expertise, provides a dynamic, scalable solution, maximizing your online store's potential.

    FAQ

    How much does the cheapest Shopify plan cost and what does it include?

    The cheapest Shopify plan is the Shopify Starter, priced at $9 per month. However, it doesn't enable the creation of a standalone store; instead, it allows seamless selling on existing social media and messaging apps.

    Does Shopify charge a transaction fee and how much?

    Yes, Shopify charges a transaction fee based on the plan. For the Basic Shopify plan, the fee starts from 2.9%; for the Shopify plan, it's 2.6%; and for the Advanced Shopify plan, it's 2.4%. If you use a third-party payment gateway instead of Shopify Payments, additional fees may apply depending on your plan.

    Which Shopify plan is the most popular?

    The most popular Shopify plan is the basic Shopify plan, available at $39 per month (or $29 per month if paid annually). This plan is often favored by small businesses and individuals who are just starting their online stores. It provides essential features at a relatively affordable monthly cost, making it a practical choice for those who are getting started with e-commerce.

    How much do you need to invest to start a Shopify store?

    The cost to start a Shopify store can vary, but generally, you can expect to invest a minimum of $29 per month for the basic Shopify plan. Additionally, there may be expenses for a domain name and any premium themes or apps you choose to enhance your store, which can range from a few dollars to a few hundred dollars. Therefore, a reasonable estimate for the initial investment could be around $50 to $100, excluding any additional marketing or inventory costs.

    Is owning a Shopify store profitable?

    Owning a Shopify store can be profitable, but success depends on factors such as product selection, marketing strategies, and market demand.

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