Among the multiple e-commerce platforms out there, Shopify platform is known as one of the best on the market today.

It helps millions of people build their own online stores and generated a combined total of $55 billion in sales.

The original Shopify platform is built for small to medium-sized businesses.

And then we have Shopify Plus, essentially an upgraded version of Shopify, designed for large enterprise businesses.

So, how can you tell which Shopify platform works best for you? 

In this article, we will list 5 key differences you must know to make the right choice.

>>> Check more articles from our Shopify comparison series!

Shopify vs Shopify Plus

About Shopify vs Shopify Plus

First thing first, to clear up any confusion: Shopify vs. Shopify Plus works in the same way.

Both are a complete commerce platform that lets you start, grow, and manage a business.

So they are technically the same. You can use the same dashboard, editor and help center for information.

Now you might wonder what does Shopify Plus do differently exactly?

The thing is, so many people fuss over Shopify Plus not because of how it works but because of what it can do.

Before explaining any further, we want to show you the pros and cons of Shopify vs Shopify Plus.

  Shopify Shopify Plus
Pros – Social media integration
– Brilliant inventory system
– Better eCommerce features than other website builders
– Discount codes
– Unlimited staff accounts
– Handling a high volume of sales
– Personalized, dedicated help and support
– Custom discounts and flash sales
Cons – No specialist integrations
– Transaction fees enforced if you use third-party payment provider
– Have to reformat your content when switch themes
– Staff accounts limited to 15
– No set price with monthly 
– Only sustainable if you’re an enterprise-level business
– Take time to invest in your eCommerce website
– Backend customization is not possible

Shopify vs Shopify Plus – Which one is more suitable for you?

We have a compare table with 5 key differences for you to have a quick look at the difference between two platforms:

Key differences Shopify Shopify Plus
Help and support 24/7 support via phone, email, and live chat Personal support called the Launch Manager
Themes and design flexibility Offer over 60 themes The same theme offers and helps you create a custom theme
eCommerce features Basic features Basic and exclusive features
Exclusive apps No Yes
Wholesale channel No Yes
Analytics Overview dashboard with business insights Partners with industry-leading analytics companies to bring you up-to-date, expert data and insight
Pricing and transaction fees Starting at $29/month Starting at $2,000 per month

For more detail of each difference, please read the content below.

5 key differences between Shopify vs Shopify Plus

1. Help and support
Both Shopify and Shopify Plus have excellent customer services

One of the critical reasons that millions of store owners trust Shopify vs Shopify Plus is their excellent customer service.

Shopify offers 24/7 support to its users via phone, email, and live chat.

This live chat service is definitely a profound difference between Shopify and other e-commerce platforms.

And if things get complicated, you can hire an expert to help you out.

Shopify Plus also offers you the same support.

But it takes one step further and arms you with personalized and dedicated support to your store.

Their personal support is called the Launch Manager.

They’ll assign you a dedicated customer support specialist who can help you and/or your dev team with everything from implementation through post-launch.

Thanks to that, you will have a person who is there to hold your hand throughout the entire store setup/migration process.

Shopify vs Shopify Plus: Help and Support

Shopify Plus wins!

2. Themes and design flexibility
Themes and design flexibility of Shopify and Shopify plus

Both are quite similar when it comes to design customization.

On both Shopify vs Shopify Plus, 73 themes are available to create your eCommerce store.

There are 10 free themes, and the rest of themes’ prices range from $140 to $180.

Shopify allows you to customize the theme easily using the editor. For a deeper level of control, you just need a basic understanding of Liquid – Shopify’s theme coding language – to make the custom edits.

Shopify themes are available in various languages. So if you want to build an online store with target audiences in a specific country, you can set it up in their native tongue, such as Spanish, French, German, etc. 

It may sound like a lot, but it won’t help your store stand out from thousands of Shopify stores out there. 

On the other hand, Shopify Plus can provide you a customized theme for your store only, with the help of your Launch Manager.

They’ll help you write code lines and get you up and running on a Shopify custom theme.

In this case, the dedicated Launch Manager will save enterprise-level businesses hundreds of bucks and a great deal of time.

One more thing, Shopify Plus will allow you to customize your checkout page with Script Editor, which is not available on other Shopify plans.

Shopify Scripts will let you create personalized experiences for your customers in their cart and at checkout.

You can see more information here.

bss commerce shopify website development service

Shopify vs Shopify Plus: Themes and design flexibility

Shopify Plus wins!

3. eCommerce features
Compare eCommerce features of Shopify and Shopify plus

eCommerce features are what truly separate Shopify and Shopify Plus.

There are some important features available to both platforms, which are:

  • Multi-Channel Integration: 

Shopify helps you sell your products directly on marketplaces like Amazon and eBay, and social media, like Facebook and Instagram.

  • Abandoned Cart Recovery: 

Sometimes, a customer visits your online store, adds items to their cart but then leaves without checking out. In that case, Shopify will send your customers an automated email as a reminder if they’re still interested in buying the products.

  • Multi-Currency Selling: 

When you use Shopify Payments – Shopify’s own payment processor, on your online store, the currency shown for your products will automatically adjust based on the customer’s location.

And now, we will show you some exclusive features for Shopify Plus only.

  • Shopify Flow

This feature helps you track your customer’s purchases and alter your homepage to match the products they may be interested in.

  • Launchpad

Launchpad is an automation tool, which allows you to handle thousands of event tasks to impressively launch your business.

  • Script Editor

We mentioned the Script Editor in the designing part, but it has loads more uses.

Besides giving you greater control over shipping, you can also create scripts for line items and payment methods.

Shopify vs Shopify Plus: eCommerce features

Shopify Plus wins!

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4. Wholesale channel
About wholesale channel side between Shopify and Shopify plus

Wholesaling is the business of distributing goods in bulk to other businesses (B2B) or customers (B2C).

As your business grows, it’s important that your store can facilitate wholesale sales.

So, another highlight difference between Shopify and Shopify Plus is the wholesale channel.

Shopify platform offers a variety of ways to wholesale your products, like use discount codes or send invoices with a wholesale app.

But one of the best ways is using the wholesale channel, which lets you expand your business into wholesale. 

It will help you create a separate, password-protected storefront that’s an extension of your online store.

That means you can offer the same products at exclusive prices to wholesale buyers or exclusive wholesale-only products.

The wholesale channel also helps you track all your wholesale customers and orders are under your current store’s Shopify admin.

There are three main features of the wholesale channel:

Separate storefront

Your wholesale store will have a different storefront and requires different login credentials from your online store. 

And customers can’t access your online store from your wholesale store.

In your wholesale store, customers can only see and order products that are in price lists that they are assigned to.

To sell products in your online store in your wholesale store, you have to add those products to a price list and assign a customer to this list.

One more thing, pages and products in your wholesale store are not indexed by search engines, which means they won’t appear in online search results.

Customized pricing

There are 4 different ways for you to customize the prices that you offer your wholesale customers.

For more details, read in here.

Order processing

Your customers’ wholesale orders appear as draft orders in your Shopify admin.

When you receive those draft orders, you can process it in 2 different ways.

For more details, read in here.

As you can see, the wholesale channel is a great option for you to sell wholesale on Shopify.

The most important thing is, the wholesale channel is available to Shopify Plus plans only.

That is one of the biggest differences between Shopify vs Shopify Plus.

Shopify vs Shopify Plus: Wholesale

Shopify Plus wins!

5. Analytics
Analytics - What is the difference between Shopify and Shopify plus?

Analytics uses data and math to help answer business questions. It’s the most important thing to improve your business.

Both Shopify and Shopify Plus provide an overview dashboard with business insights through analytics.

In the overview dashboard, you can view stats like sales, top products, landing pages or referrers, returning customer rate, and more. 

Of course, with Shopify, the higher plan you use, the more detailed the reports will be. 

But Shopify Plus takes the game to another level by including more in-depth analysis and detailed information.

Shopify Plus partners with some industry-leading analytics companies, like Glew or Looker, to name a few. And they will bring you up-to-date, expert data and insight.

The collected information will be the game-changer, which helps you make big business calls in a split second.

Shopify vs Shopify Plus: Analytics

Shopify Plus wins!

6. Pricing and transaction fees
Shopify vs Shopify plus - Pricing and transaction fees

Pricing is a significant difference between the two services.

As expected, Shopify pricing comes in at a lower overall price point than Shopify Plus.

Currently, Shopify has three main plan:

  • Basic Shopify: Starting at $29.99 per month
  • Shopify: $79.99 per month
  • Advanced Shopify: $299.99 per month

You also have a 14-day free trial option to test it out before upgrading to any plan. 

For a full list of features per plan, please check out the Shopify website.

Shopify Plus costs so much more than Shopify because of the features and support it offers.

Shopify Plus plans start at $2000 per month, but Shopify Plus has no fixed plan.

Shopify Plus offers you customized plans based on the revenue.

So, based on your Shopify Plus store’s sales volume, here is what you can expect to pay:

  • $0 to $800,000 – you’ll pay $2,000
  • $1,000,000 – you’ll pay $2,500
  • $5,000,000 – you’ll pay $12,500
  • $12,000,000 – you’ll pay $30,000
  • $16,000,000 and more – you’ll pay $40,000

From this information, you can think about your business model, monthly turnover, and marketing need to come to an agreement over a suitable price.

One more thing you need to know is transaction fees.

Shopify’s transaction fees are also lower with Shopify Plus.

If you don’t use Shopify Payments but use a third-party payment provider, like Stripe for example, you’ll pay 1.6% plus 35 cents per transaction, as well as an additional 0.15% per transaction.

And once again, unlike Shopify with standard plans, with Shopify Plus, you never pay a fixed fee.

It alters based on your store’s revenue for the given month.

In order to get a quote about the exact pricing transaction fees, you have to contact Shopify Plus directly.

Shopify vs Shopify Plus: Pricing and Transaction fees

Shopify wins!

>>> Curious about Top 10 Must-Have Shopify Apps for a New Store?

Shopify vs. Shopify plus - Who is the winner?

Conclusion

To put it simply, Shopify is built for small to medium-sized businesses, whereas the newer Shopify Plus is designed for large enterprise businesses.

So the real question is: At what point in your business growth do you need to start considering Shopify vs. Shopify Plus?

Consider carefully about your own store to choose the right one for you.

Remember that your choice not only depends on where you are now but also where you want to be in the next upcoming years.

The best thing about it is that no decision is final. Shopify allows you to upgrade or downgrade whenever your needs and goals change.

Hopefully, this article can help you pick the most suitable platform for your business. 

And if you have decided which plan is suitable, you can always contact us for a FREE consultation on how you should build and grow your Shopify store, we’d here to help!

Good luck to you!

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