1 February 2024
No raindrops on roses, but loads of interesting stuff was announced yesterday during Shopify’s latest Editions reveal. There really was a lot there, but we’ll just go through a few of our favourites.
This was the one we’d been waiting for. Subscriptions had been launched a while back but required a third party app to manage how the subscriptions were set up, and they often came with per-transaction rate fees, making them difficult to determine cost effectiveness. Shopify then announced they would be releasing their own app in the Summer Editions, but it’s taken until now to have it ready.
The Shopify subscription app is now available in the app store providing an integrated way to manage subscriptions in a robust and consistent way:
Shopify has always been limited to having 100 variants and 3 options for any product, so we’ve often had to find ways around that for businesses who sell products with large numbers of different configurations.
Yesterday they announced that the API will allow 2000 variants, and also hinted that the number of options might be increased. Hopefully that’ll also be within the admin itself and not only through an app using the API, but we’ll have to wait and see when that’s fully rolled out. Either way, it’s going to make handling complex products a lot simpler.
Shopify has had a gift card feature for as long as we can remember, but it was never a particularly elegant solution. The person buying the gift card had to send it on to the recipient themselves which always felt clumsy. That was updated a little while back but it’s just been improved again with the purchaser being able to add a message and schedule when the card is sent - making it much more useful, and inline with what customers are expecting to see when buying a gift card.
It’s a bit of a techy one this, but it opens up some incredibly powerful options. Shopify has fairly recently rolled Flow out to all stores - originally it was Plus only. Flow allows store owners to create workflows based on almost any trigger that do almost anything - it’s a very powerful system. It’s now going to be even more versatile though, instead of the actions being chosen from a list, we can add our own scripts in there to fully customise the action.
Most themes have a system to show colour swatches in filters and within the product’s options - and if they haven’t, we’ve written a few ourselves, but it’s always nice to have a built-in solution that is the same for all stores. It just makes everything work consistently and reliably, so it’s a welcome addition.
Product data has always been easy to export and import within Shopify which means that bulk edits can be made in a spreadsheet, or the data copied to a development store perfectly. The only frustration was that metafields were never included in these exports meaning that data was never transferred and could be lost if that export was edited and imported back in. Metafields are useful custom data attributes that can be added to products to allow a whole range of functionality - from allowing a PDF specification to be added to the product, to adding lead times or age suitability icons for example. So we were very pleased to see the announcement that these will be part of the export file soon.
Again, it’s a bit of a niche one, but we have had times during theme development where having blocks-within-blocks would have been really useful. And now can - up to 8 layers apparently. This makes the already very flexible system within the customiser even more versatile, and allows us to build in complex new features in a way that is much simpler for the store owner to manage. So it’s another one that we were really pleased to see.
There wasn’t too much on this within Editions, but Shopify has launched Collabs allowing collaborators and influencers to receive automatic commission based on their referred sales, and for commision rates to be set for different customer segments. It opens up a whole new area of marketing strategy for Shopify store owners. More details can be found here.
There’s so much more being added - these really were just some of our top picks. Shop Pay is going to allow instalments, review syncs with Yotpo and Judge.me, a built in exchange system added to the returns process, and store credit are just a few of the other goodies heading our way.
See for yourself though - you might have a different set of favourites.
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