Are you one of the 600,000+ merchants leveraging Shopify’s platform? If so, you may be wondering: “When is it the right time to consider upgrading to the Shopify Plus platform?” While there is no silver bullet answer and at face value, it is going to feel like an expensive decision, we can help you make your decision. (If you have not had a chance to review the platform yet, a great place to start is with The Definitive Buyer’s Guide to Shopify Plus.)
Let’s take a moment to quickly recap the difference in Shopify core plans and pricing:
The Shopify Plus platform starts at $2,000/month. So, why/when should you spend $1,701/month more for the Plus offering?
The reality is there are more than a few reasons to consider the move, so let’s talk about them.
1. When you’re making over $1M in annual revenue.
Once you hit about $1M in annual revenue, switching to Plus can be the right move to take your store to the next level. At this point, the tools Plus offers are what your store needs to get to the next level of success.
Around $1M is also where Plus starts to make sense from a cost perspective. In our Shopify Plus buyers guide, we broke down cost and provided an example that puts into perspective just how low the revenue threshold is for considering Plus. At $300,000 in monthly revenue, Shopify Plus takes approximately 1% of your revenue. And once you upgrade to Plus, the additional features allow you to scale your business quickly not only justifying the cost but proving positive ROI within the first year.
2. When your repetitive tasks are preventing you from focusing on new growth opportunities.
Shopify Plus provides merchants with two stellar automation tools that put your many repetitive and administrative tasks on autopilot to allow you to focus on growing. As your business grows too big for Core, these automation features will make a massive difference in your bottom line.
Launchpad automates frontend processes, like your product launches or marketing campaigns.
- Sales campaigns
- Product releases
- Inventory updates
- The launch of a flash-sale theme
- Condition customer tags
- And much more...
Flow, on the other hand, automates your backend processes, including:
- Product reorders
- Tags on newly created products
- Segmentation customers based on purchasing behavior
- And much more...
3. When you need to start customizing your store’s checkout.
If you’re interested in optimizing your store’s checkout experience, it’s time to look into Plus. While Shopify Checkout is available for all Shopify merchants, Shopify Plus provides merchants with far more flexibility in the checkout experience compared to the regular Shopify plans.
Plus merchants have access to a checkout.liquid file. The checkout.liquid file enables merchants to fully customize their checkout experience including the look, customer fields, shipping methods, payment options, or even Shopify Scripts. You can count on some positive ROI from this part alone!
4. When you’re ready to expand internationally.
Shopify is well aware of how important selling internationally is these days (US eCommerce sales will only account for 17% of all eCommerce sales by 2020), so they make sure Plus merchants can easily gain traction in international markets.
While Core has many extensions that can help small stores break into international markets, at some point you need to do more than simply sell in the local currency. So when you find that your store has reached a cap on the sales your domestic site is capable of in international waters, it’s time to look into Plus. Plus merchants are given 9 free clone stores, allowing you to customize your store by language, currency, culture, or season.
5. When your staff outgrows your staff accounts.
Advanced Shopify Core allows for a maximum of 15 staff accounts. That’s certainly a good number for small and growing stores, but as your store grows, you will likely outgrow that 15. Shopify Plus has an unlimited number of staff accounts, so once you hit that 16th seat, you don’t have to worry anymore about your staff’s growth.
If you answered yes to any of the above...
To determine if now is the time to upgrade to Shopify Plus there are many directions you can take. Obviously, some internal discussion will help to determine if you are in a place to consider the move further. However, it is always smart to speak with an expert in the field. Plus has a solid team ready to speak with you and they have a strong network of partners that would be happy to help.
Dustin is an Account Executive at ShopPad. He loves eCommerce and has worked with merchants LARGE and small. He knows that in an environment controlled by the likes of Amazon there has never been a better time to optimize your retail strategy and get the online piece right. When he is not working, Dustin is probably enjoying all the fine dining in San Francisco!