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Shopify Basic Plan Review 2024: Pricing, Features, and comparisons

May 01, 2024
Written and researched by experts at AvadaLearn more about our methodology

By Sam Nguyen

CEO Avada Commerce

In this article, I will show how the Shopify Basic Plan can be a game-changer for my ecommerce journey. I will review its features and benefits to help you make an informed decision for your online store. Let’s get started!

What is Shopify Basic Plan?

The Basic Shopify Plan is one of the pricing subscriptions offered by Shopify. It’s perfect for small to medium-sized businesses looking to establish and grow their online presence. 

Shopify Basic Plan: Costs & Fees

Selling on the Shopify Basic Plan involves several costs and fees. Let's explore these costs in detail:

Subscription fees

The Basic Shopify Plan offers two pricing options:

  • Monthly: $39 per month 
  • Yearly: $29 per month (billed annually)

If you choose annual billing, you can save 25%, which equals $100 annually.

Recommendation

Yearly Subscription: I recommend that store owners opt for the annual subscription. This option provides significant cost savings and uninterrupted access to all features and updates throughout the year.

Special offer

After a 3-day free trial, you can take advantage of a special offer where you pay just $1 for the first month before committing to a full subscription. This extended trial allows you to explore the platform’s basic features without a significant upfront investment, ensuring it aligns with your business goals and needs.

Exclusive Offer: Get Shopify 33 days for just $1 + The Online Store Starter Kit

Start your 3-day free trial, and enjoy your first month of Shopify for 1$ plus the premium package designed especially for new Shopify merchants!

Start Free Trial

Transaction fees

if you use a payment provider other than Shopify Payments, Shopify’s built-in payment gateway, there's a transaction fee on the Basic Shopify Plan. Here are the details:

Online Credit Card Rates

  • 2.9% + 30¢ per transaction

In-Person Credit Card Rates

  • 2.7% per transaction (using Shopify POS)

External Payment Gateway Fee

  • 2% additional fee if not using Shopify Payments

If you use PayPal as an external payment gateway with the Shopify Basic plan in US, you'll incur the following fees:

  • Shopify Transaction Fee: 2% of the transaction value.
  • PayPal Transaction Fee: 2.99% + $0.49 per transaction.
  • Total Fees: You'll pay 4.99% + $0.49 per transaction.

For example: For a $100 sale, you would pay $4.99 (4.99% of $100) + $0.49 = $5.48 in total fees.

Additional costs

In addition to transaction and subscription fees, the Shopify Basic Plan has other costs. Let’s break them down below:

Domain Name 

When setting up your Shopify Basic Plan, consider the costs associated with purchasing or transferring a domain.

  • Purchasing a Domain: You can buy a custom domain through Shopify, starting at $14 per year.
  • Transferring an Existing Domain: If you already have a domain, you can transfer it to Shopify. Transfer fees vary depending on your current registrar.
  • Annual Renewal Fee: Whether you purchase a new domain or transfer an existing one, there will be a yearly renewal fee to maintain the domain.

Email Hosting

The Shopify Basic Plan includes web hosting but not email hosting. You'll need to use third-party apps or services to send emails to your customers.

The Shopify Email app allows you to send up to 10,000 monthly emails for free. After that, it costs $1 for every additional 1,000 emails sent.

Shopify Apps

App costs are additional and separate from the Shopify Basic Plan subscription. With the average merchant spending around $19 monthly on apps, carefully considering which apps your business needs is important.

Shopify Themes

Shopify themes are an additional cost and are not included in any Shopify plan. While Shopify offers a variety of free themes, premium themes can cost up to $380 as a one-time purchase. You can find free and premium themes within the Shopify Theme Store or from external sources.

Shopify POS Pricing

Shopify POS Lite comes built-in with the Shopify Basic Plan, while Shopify POS Pro will cost $89 per store location.

  • Shopify POS Lite: from $1094 per store as a 1-time investment, covering your Shopify POS system.
  • Shopify POS Pro: from $2133 per store for year-1 investment. From the second year on, Shopify POS Pro will only cost $1068 per store.

Remember, these are estimates based on the most affordable hardware options, and your actual costs may vary depending on your specific needs.

Total cost estimation 

Here’s a breakdown of the estimated total cost for setting up your Shopify store using the Basic plan:

Features Pricing ($) 
Monthly subscription fee $39 
Transaction feesShopify Payments2.9% + 30¢ per transaction
Selling in person2.6%  + 10¢ per transaction
Third-party payment processors2%
Domain name Approximately $14 per year (or about $1.17 per month)
ThemesFree to $380 (one-time purchase) 
AppsFree to $99 per month 
POS Free - $89 
Marketing and Advertising $50 - $300 per month  
Total Cost$90.17 - $ 650.00, plus any additional shipping fees 

The table is based on US pricing, and the Shopify Basic Plan varies by country. To get accurate local pricing, use the pricing tool below. This will ensure you have the most relevant cost information for your location.



Note: You can turn on your VPN (if you are outside of your target country) or turn off the VPN (if you are inside your target country).

What Does The Shopify Basic Plan Include? 

The Basic Shopify Plan includes tools for creating an online store, managing products, orders, and customer info. 

Online store

Using Shopify’s Basic or higher plan, you can easily create an online store and customize and manage it from your Shopify account.

Shopify also has a built-in theme editor to customize the store’s appearance. Otherwise, you can access over 90 mobile-responsive themes (including 12 free Shopify Themes) from the Shopify Theme Store.

Unlimited products

The Shopify Basic Plan allows you to list and sell unlimited online and in-person products with no restrictions. With up to 10 inventory locations, you can expand your reach globally. 

Shopify's Basic plan also allows you to add a wide range of product information to create detailed and informative product pages. Here's what you can add:

Basic Information:

  • Title: The name of your product.
  • Description: A detailed description highlighting features, benefits, and uses.
  • Images: High-quality photos showcasing your product from different angles.
  • Pricing: Set the regular and sale price.
  • SKU (Stock Keeping Unit): A unique code for tracking inventory.
  • Barcode: If your product has a barcode, you can add it for easier inventory management.
  • Inventory: Track stock levels and set up low stock alerts.

Variants:

  • Options: Create options like size, color, material, etc.
  • Variant Images: Assign unique images to each variant.
  • Pricing: Set different prices for different variants.
  • SKU and Barcode: Assign unique codes and barcodes for each variant.
  • Inventory: Track stock levels for each variant.

Additional Information:

  • Collections: Combine products into collections (e.g., categories, seasons, etc.).
  • Tags: Add tags for easier filtering and searching.
  • Product Type: Categorize your product (e.g., clothing, electronics, etc.).
  • Vendor: Specify the vendor or brand of your product.
  • SEO (Search Engine Optimization): Customize title tags, meta descriptions, and URLs for better search visibility.

Multiple reports

Although the Shopify Basic Plan reporting is limited, it provides essential reports to assist your day-to-day operations. Here are the reports you will get:

  • Analytics Report: This report shows key metrics such as sales, orders, and online store visitor data. You can monitor sales trends and product performance to make necessary adjustments.
  • Product Analytics: This report breaks down product performance, helping you understand who is buying specific products and how each product performs over time.
  • Live View: This real-time report shows what is happening on your site. It includes a globe view to see where your customers are and key visit metrics.

Additionally, you have free access to finance reporting, acquisition reports, inventory reports, behavior reports, and marketing reports, helping you smoothly operate their Shopify online stores. 

If you upgrade to the Shopify Plan, which is a step up from the Basic Plan, you will gain access to additional reports such as customer reports, sales reports, and retail sales reports.

Abandoned cart recovery

Abandoned cart recovery is a powerful feature in the Shopify Basic plan, allowing you to identify and reach out to potential customers who leave your store without completing their purchase. This can significantly boost your revenue with minimal effort, requiring only an initial time investment to set up automated messages.

SSL certificates

An SSL certificate is a security protocol that creates a safe connection between the server and the browser, protecting your customers' information. With Shopify, SSL certificates encrypt your online store's content and publish it securely using “HTTPS” instead of “HTTP.” This displays the SSL padlock icon in the address bar beneath your store’s URL.

Additionally, the Basic Shopify Plan supports your international growth with Shopify Markets. This global eCommerce management tool offers multi-currency and multi-language features, making it easier to reach customers worldwide.

Automation of ecommerce tasks

Unlike the Starter plan, the Shopify Basic plan allows you to automate many eCommerce tasks using a visual workflow builder called “Shopify Flow.’” This tool lets you create 'if this, then that' (IFTT) style rules, enabling Shopify to take specific actions based on certain events. 

For example, if your inventory runs low, it can automatically send an email to a supplier. This automation streamlines your operations and saves you time.

Localized global selling (3 markets)

The Basic Shopify Plan supports your international growth with Shopify Markets. This global eCommerce tool helps store owners identify, launch, and optimize sales in different countries or regions. Additionally, they can create personalized shopping experiences for specific segments, tailoring your store to meet their needs better.

Blogs

Blogging is crucial for selling products online as it's a core component of inbound marketing. On the Basic Shopify Plan, you can create multiple blogs and posts, inform customers about events and promotions, and receive comments/feedback, increasing sales and driving traffic.

Shopify Basic vs. Other Shopify Plans

Shopify Basic vs Shopify Starter: Which is Best For You? 

Shopify Basic and Shopify Starter are two different plans tailored for different business needs. Here's a quick comparison to help you choose the right one:

FeatureShopify Basic Shopify Starter
Online Store 
Blog Functionality
Staff Accounts
Abandoned Cart Recovery
Discount Codes
Manual Order Creation
ReportsBasicBasic
24/7 Support
Transaction Fees (online)2.9% + 30¢5%

For a detailed comparison of Shopify Starter and Shopify Basic, check out this article: Shopify Starter Vs Basic: Which Pricing Plan Is For You?

Shopify Basic vs Shopify Plan: Which Plan is Right for You?

While Shopify Basic and Shopify plans share many features, some key differences exist that need to be considered in order to determine which is best for your business.

FeatureShopify Basic PlanShopify Plan
Monthly Subscription Fee$39 per month$105 per month
ProductsUnlimitedUnlimited
Staff Accounts05
Credit card rates (online)2.9% + 30¢2.7% + 30¢
Credit card rates (in-person)2.6% + 10¢2.5% + 10¢
Payment Gateway Fees2% for third-party gateways1% for third-party gateways
ReportsBasic ReportsBasic Reports 
Abandoned Cart Recovery
Gift Cards
Shipping DiscountsUp to 77%Up to 88%
International Domains
Multi-Currency
Multi-Language
Shopify POSAll plans include the Lite version. The POS Pro costs $89 per location per month.
24/7 Support
Third-Party Calculated Shipping Rates
Additional Reports

So, in my opinion, you should choose

  • Shopify Basic: Choose Basic if you're just starting and need a simple, affordable solution with all the essential features for running an online store.
  • Shopify: Choose Shopify if your business is growing and you need additional staff accounts. The lower credit card rates can also make a significant difference as your sales volume increases.

Set Up an Online Store with the Shopify Basic Plan: A Step-by-Step Guide

Here is how to build a Shopify store with the Shopify Basic plan:

Step 1. Create An Account

  • Next, you'll answer a series of questions with pre-made choices. You can skip these questions or choose the answers that best match your preferences and business needs. 

Step 2: Selecting the Basic Plan

  • Click on the “Select a Plan” button in the left-bottom corner of the screen.
  • Click on “Select Basic” and fill in your payment details.
  • Click on the “Subscribe” button.

Step 3. Choose Your Theme

  • Click the "Online Store" button and select "Themes."
  • Scroll down to the "Popular free themes" section for the top free themes available.
  • There are also premium themes that require a fee to use. Below the "Free themes" option on your dashboard, click "Visit Theme Store" to find the paid themes to explore and select from various premium options.
  • When you find a theme you like, click the "Add" button to include it in the "Theme library" section on your admin panel's Themes page.

Step 4. Add Products & Product-Related Content

Once your site design is ready, it's time to add your products or services to purchase.

  • On the left-side navigation bar, click "Products" (third from the top).
  • On the products page, click the "Add your products" button to add a title, description, product type, price, images, and more. 
  • After adding your first product, repeat the process for each product or service.

Step 5. Organize Your Products

To organize your products, you can group them into different categories or collections. This makes it easier for customers to find what they're looking for, increasing the likelihood of purchases.

  • Return to your Shopify admin page, click "Products," then click the "Collections" link. 
  • On the collections page, click the "Create collection" button in the upper right corner.
  • Add your collection title and any other details about your product groups.

Step 6. Set Up Payments & Checkout

  • Go to your Shopify admin dashboard, click on "Settings," then find "Payments" in the left-hand menu bar.
  • However, if you want to accept payments with PayPal or another third-party provider, click "Add payment method" below the button.

Step 7. Set Up Shipping Rates

To set up shipping rates on Shopify, follow these steps:

  • Go to Settings > “Shipping and delivery.”
  • Select the shipping profile you want to work with and click "Manage."
  • Click "Add rate" to set rate details. Enter the name and applicable shipping rate value (e.g., amount, currency, weight).
  • Click "Done," then "Save" to add the shipping rate.
  • Using Shopify Payments, you can offer flat shipping rates in local currencies to customers from different markets.

Step 8. Set Up Tax Rates

  • From your Shopify admin, go to Settings > “Taxes and duties.”
  • In the "Manage sales tax collection" section, click on your country or region.
  • Click "Collect VAT" to set up tax collection for the selected country or region.
  • In the "VAT number" field, enter your tax number. If you have not received your tax number, leave this field blank and update it later.
  • Click "Collect VAT" to confirm tax collection for the selected region.

Step 9. Test & Launch Your Shopify Store

Before launching your Shopify store, it's best to place a test order. 

  • Go to Settings > Payments from your Shopify admin and click “Edit.”
  • Then, check the "Use test mode" option and click Save.

Once you're ready to make your Shopify store public, follow these steps:

  1. From your Shopify admin, go to Online Store > “Preferences.”
  1. Scroll down to the Password Protection section.
  2. Uncheck the option "Restrict access to visitors with the password" and “Save.”

Shopify Basic Plan: FAQs

What is the basic plan for Shopify?

The Basic Shopify Plan is a pricing subscription that lets you create an online store to manage products, orders, and customers. It's ideal for starting a business. 

What is the difference between Shopify Basic and Shopify?

The main difference between the Shopify Plan and the Basic Shopify Plan lies in the features and cost. The Basic Plan is more affordable, making it ideal for new and small businesses. In contrast, the Shopify Plan is better suited for growing businesses that require advanced tools, additional staff accounts, and lower transaction fees. Therefore, choosing the right plan depends on your specific needs, goals, and budget.

Is Basic Shopify enough?

Basic Shopify can be enough, depending on your specific needs and goals. This plan is ideal for launching and running a new small online store on a limited budget. It offers features like unlimited products, abandoned cart recovery, and basic reports.

Is Shopify $1 for one month?

Yes, Shopify offers a promotional deal for new users, where you can try the platform for three days for free and pay only $1 for the first month after the trial. However, this deal is not always available and may vary depending on your region and current promotions.

How much is a Basic Shopify Plan?

The Shopify Basic Plan is $39 per month. However, if you pay annually, you can get a 25% discount, bringing the cost down to $29 per month. Keep in mind that prices might vary slightly depending on your region.

Can you dropship with the Shopify Basic plan?

Yes, you can dropship with the Shopify Basic plan! In fact, Shopify is a popular platform for dropshipping businesses because it's easy to set up and integrate with many dropshipping apps and suppliers.

The Basic plan provides all the essential features you need to run a dropshipping business, such as unlimited products, online store features, abandoned cart recovery, and multiple sales channels. 

What are other Shopify Pricing Plans besides the Shopify Basic Plan?

Besides the Shopify Basic Plan, Shopify offers several other pricing plans to cater to different business needs and sizes:

  • Starter Shopify Plan: $5 per month + 5% transaction fees
  • Shopify Plan: $105 per month, with 2.6% + 30¢ per transaction
  • Advanced Shopify Plan: $399 per month, with 2.4% + 30¢ per transaction
  • Shopify Plus: Starting at $2000 per month

Each plan offers different features and benefits, so it's essential to compare them and choose the one that best suits your business needs and budget.

Final Thoughts

The Shopify Basic plan offers an affordable and comprehensive solution for launching and managing an online store, providing essential features to support small businesses. It's a great starting point for those with limited budgets and straightforward eCommerce needs.

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Sam Nguyen is the CEO and founder of Avada Commerce, an e-commerce solution provider headquartered in Singapore. He is an expert on the Shopify e-commerce platform for online stores and retail point-of-sale systems. Sam loves talking about e-commerce and he aims to help over a million online businesses grow and thrive.

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