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Shopify Pricing In South Africa: A Detailed Breakdown 

May 27, 2024
Written and researched by experts at AvadaLearn more about our methodology

By Sam Nguyen

CEO Avada Commerce

Navigating through Shopify pricing in South Africa can be intricate. This post offers a detailed breakdown to steer your decision-making process.

Key Takeaways

  • Shopify offers a variety of pricing plans in South Africa, catering to different business sizes and needs, from the entry-level Shopify Starter to the expanded Shopify Plus.
  • Launching a Shopify store in South Africa requires fixed and variable costs, including registration fees, transaction fees, payment gateway fees, and additional costs for domains, themes, apps, shipping, Discounts, and POS systems.
  • Shopify offers a free trial period for entrepreneurs to evaluate the platform’s fit with their business goals before choosing a paid plan in different regions such as the UK, the USA, Canada, and New Zealand.

What Are The Expected Costs of Shopify in South Africa?

When setting up a Shopify store in South Africa, there are several costs involved. The fixed costs are the monthly or yearly subscription fees for the chosen Shopify plan. 

Beyond the subscription costs, there are several other costs that you may incur to ensure your online store operates efficiently and stands out from the competition. 

  • Monthly Subscriptions.
  • Transaction Fees.
  • Payment Gateway Charges.
  • App Costs.
  • Website Design and Development.
  • Domain Name and Hosting.
  • Taxes and Legal Compliance.

It’s essential to note that these costs may differ based on your business size, sales volume, and specific needs. This means you can flexibly select services and features that align with your business requirements. 

Shopify Pricing South Africa: A Detailed Breakdown

Shopify Pricing South Africa: A Detailed Breakdown

When it comes to choosing an ecommerce platform for your business in South Africa, understanding the pricing structure of different plans is essential. 

This section will provide detailed information about Shopify’s pricing options in NZ and South Africa, allowing you to make informed decisions for your online store.

Shopify Starter

Shopify Starter

The Shopify Starter plan is designed as an entry-level solution for individuals or entrepreneurs who want to venture into online sales through social networks and messaging apps. Whether a solo entrepreneur or a small startup, this plan offers a cost-effective way to start your online retail journey.

The Shopify Starter plan is set at a minimum of $5 per month, where you can get the plan at $1 per month for the first month to accommodate individuals who are just starting out. 

Main features

  • Simple online store with product pages, a contact page, and Shopify’s secure checkout.
  • Mobile point of sale for in-person sales using just your smartphone.
  • Linkpop, the commerce-focused link in bio tool.
  • Access to Shopify apps for extended functionality.
  • Shopify order management and an integrated fulfillment network.

Shopify Basic

The Shopify Basic plan costs $25 per month or $19 monthly paid annually. This plan is quite flexible, can accommodate many different business sizes, and is suitable for small businesses or solo entrepreneurs.

The plan offers the tools and features to build and operate your online store effectively. 

Main features

  • Basic reporting provides tools to track sales, orders, and traffic, helping store owners analyze performance and make informed decisions.
  • Inventory management – With up to 10 inventory locations, your product management is streamlined, whether you have one product or a growing number of items.
  • 24/7 Support to resolve any concerns or issues, ensuring your online store runs smoothly.
  • Unlimited Products – there is no limit to the number of products you can sell, which provides many opportunities for business growth.
  • Secure Shopping Cart ensures a seamless checkout experience for your customers.


In South Africa, the Shopify plan is priced at $65 monthly. However, they offer a promotional rate of just $1 for the first month, providing substantial savings and letting businesses test advanced features with minimum financial commitment. 

With its flexibility and comprehensive tools, this plan is particularly suited for small to medium enterprises looking to expand their online footprint.

Shopify pricing plans

Main features

  • All the basic plan features ensure a seamless transition for businesses upgrading to this level.
  • Basic reporting provides comprehensive insights that support data-driven decision-making.
  • Staff Accounts – The availability of 5 staff accounts enables better collaboration between team members while ensuring secure access control to critical store management functions.
  • Enhanced Inventory Management manages up to 10 inventory locations efficiently.
  • Abandoned Cart Messaging recovers potential sales with automated messages targeting abandoned carts.

Shopify Advanced

The Shopify Advanced plan is designed for international sellers and growing businesses, offering robust tools for expansion. Priced at $399 monthly or $299 per month for an annual subscription, it provides advanced reporting and analytics tools to manage a Shopify store.

Main features

  • All the features of the Shopify plan ensure merchants moving to this level have continued access to previous functionalities.
  • Custom Report Builder empowers businesses to create tailored reports, facilitating deeper dives into business analytics and performance metrics.
  • Staff accounts – With up to 15 staff accounts, this plan fosters a collaborative environment for larger teams.
  • Third-party calculated shipping rates enable accurate shipping cost calculations from third-party shipping services, allowing for seamless integration of external shipping providers.
  • Duties and import taxes allow import taxes to be estimated and collected at checkout to provide customers with a clear total cost and reduce the risk of parcel returns and rejections.

Shopify Plus

Shopify Plus

Pricing for Shopify Plus starts at $2,000 per month. For sellers with high volumes or unique business models, the plan is tailored to those businesses’ specific needs and operational requirements. Its comprehensive feature set and expandability make it a strong choice for businesses with extensive online operations and significant online growth ambitions.

Main features:

  • Robust Infrastructure handles high traffic, large catalogs, and transaction volumes, ensuring stability during peak sales.
  • Automation –  Shopify Flow and Script Editor allow for tailored operational processes.
  • Exclusive APIs facilitate advanced integration and customization.
  • Custom Checkouts enhance brand identity and customer satisfaction.
  • Omnichannel expands sales across multiple platforms and markets.
  • International Tools facilitate global sales with currency conversion, translation, and localized marketing.
  • Transporter speeds up store data migration to Shopify Plus.
  • Advanced Security ensures data protection and regulatory compliance.
  • Reliability maintains operations during high-traffic events like Black Friday.
  • Headless Commerce manages custom storefronts across channels from one backend.
  • ERP Integration connects seamlessly with major ERP and CRM systems.
  • Performance Dashboard monitors real-time store metrics and customer behaviors.
PlansMonthly CosyPaid Annually  Transaction FeesBest For 
Starter$5$5Depending on the 3rd payment gatewayIndividuals/Small Startups/Content creators/Bloggers and so on
Basic$25$19Solo entrepreneurs
Shopify$65$49Small teams or businesses
Shopify Advanced$399$299Medium to Large Enterprises for business scales
Shopify PlusStarting at $2,000Starting at $2,000Large Enterprises/High-Volume Merchants

The Third Hidden Cost of Running a Shopify Store

Running a Shopify store in South Africa comes with its fair share of expenses. While the monthly subscription plans are transparent, there are additional costs that may catch you by surprise.

In this section, we will break down the various components that contribute to it.

Domain Name

Acquiring a custom domain name is a fundamental step toward establishing an online presence and brand identity. A domain name that reflects your brand instills trust in your customers and promotes brand consistency.

Cost: Domain names can range from $10 to $20 or more per year, depending on the domain extension (.com, .co.za, .net, etc.).



The visual appeal of your online store is pivotal in attracting and retaining customers. Themes are the templates that dictate the look and feel of your store.

Cost: While Shopify offers a selection of free themes, premium themes can range from around $150 to $360 or more, providing a more unique and professional appearance.


Apps extend the functionality of your Shopify store, allowing for features like SEO optimization, email marketing, and inventory management.

Cost: Some apps are free, but others may require a one-time payment or a monthly subscription. The price of apps can significantly vary based on their functionality and the developer.

Shipping & Discounts

While shipping costs and discounts might not be hidden, they influence your profits and should be accounted for in your pricing approach.

There are different apps that help merchants manage their shipping and fulfillment. One such app is Shiprocket, which lets you buy shipping labels from various couriers like FedEx, BlueDart, Delhivery, DHL, Gati, and others. 

Cost: Shipping costs vary based on the courier service, distance, and package size.

Point-of-Sale (POS)

Point-of-Sale (POS)

You’ll need a POS system if you plan to sell in-person and online. Shopify offers its own POS hardware and software, which comes with additional costs.

Cost: The cost of Shopify’s POS hardware varies, and there’s also a monthly fee for the POS Pro software, which is $89 per month per location.

Hosting Fees

Shopify handles the hosting of your online store, ensuring a secure and reliable infrastructure. However, the hosting fees are bundled within your chosen Shopify plan.

Cost: The hosting cost is embedded in your monthly Shopify plan, but if you exceed the allocated resources, you may need to upgrade your plan or incur additional charges.

Is Shopify Payments available in South Africa?

Is Shopify Payments available in South Africa?

Shopify Payments, which is Shopify’s own payment gateway, is unavailable in South Africa for various reasons, including regulatory constraints, banking partnerships, and the complexity of integrating with local payment systems. 

However, merchants in South Africa can still use Shopify with third-party payment gateways such as PayPal, Stripe, PayFast, 2Checkout, etc. 

Is A Shopify Free Trial in South Africa?

Shopify is famous for offering a 3-day free trial period, allowing users to experience the platform and its features before signing up for a paid plan. This trial period gives entrepreneurs the opportunity to evaluate Shopify’s capabilities and determine whether Shopify is right for their business goals.

Shopify Pricing in South Africa vs Global: At A Glance

The differences in Shopify pricing between South Africa and globally could stem from various factors, some of which are:

  • Local Taxes and Regulations

Different countries have different tax laws and regulations that could impact the pricing of Shopify plans. For instance, Value Added Tax (VAT) or other local taxes might be applied to the pricing in South Africa, potentially making it different from global pricing.

  • Payment Processing Fees

The unavailability of Shopify Payments in South Africa necessitates using third-party payment gateways, which might have different transaction fees than Shopify Payments, thereby affecting the overall cost of running a Shopify store in South Africa.

Some available payment providers in South Africa include  2Checkout, BitPay, Payflex, PayGate, Ozow (Automated EFT), PayFast, PayPal Express Checkout, Paystack, and Paymentwall. However, consider choosing Paystack because of the cost-effective payment and ease of use. 

  • Promotions and Offers

Shopify might run different promotions and offers in other regions such as Shopify Pricing in New Zealand, which could lead to temporary or permanent differences in pricing.

Which Plan Is For You in South Africa?

Choosing the right Shopify plan is essential for your ecommerce success. While business needs vary, Shopify’s Basic Plan is often the prudent choice for many new online merchants, especially because it’s cost-effective at $39 per month. 

This package offers a good balance of essential features without being too expensive. It provides core e-commerce functionalities such as storing unlimited products, 24/7 support, sales channels, basic reports, discount codes, and free SSL certificates to secure customer data.

Furthermore, the plan’s compatibility with various third-party payment gateways is essential to operate in regions like South Africa and Pakistan, where Shopify Payments is unavailable.

Shopify Pricing in South Africa: FAQs

Yes, you can upgrade or downgrade your Shopify plan at any time according to your business needs.
You can purchase a domain directly through Shopify or use an existing domain. The cost of a new domain typically starts at around $13- 30 per year.
No, all Shopify plans allow for an unlimited number of products.
No, you don’t have to provide credit card details to start the free trial with Shopify in South Africa.
Yes, the Shopify Starter plan at $5 per month or the Basic Shopify plan at $39 per month could be suitable for temporary or pop-up shops.
Yes, Shopify provides various educational resources, including guides, tutorials, and a supportive community to help you get started.

Bottom Line

Investing time to comprehend Shopify pricing in South Africa is crucial for choosing a plan that meets your business needs and budget, ensuring a seamless online retail experience for you and your customers.

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.