We would never predict, we would have such an amazing head start of the summer, when it comes to e-commerce and Shopify. We speculated about what can be discussed on the conference, based on previous information, but Shopify found a way to blow our minds. They’ve been working under the hood, in the garage, and their team made something huge this year. Fulfillment Centers, POS, and the idea for Shopify to not just be a software, and remain online, but to go in the offline waters, tap (& chip) into the real world.
Dozens of Shopify Partners, Merchants and members of the Shopify Ecosystem have been a part of the 3-day event that took place in Toronto, ON, Canada this year.
Here’s what Shopify announced at this Unite 2019, and how big of an impact should we expect for the overall e-commerce world once these announcements start taking off!
1. Online Store: The Core
Online Store is where most of us has begun. Sign up for a 14-day trial, or 30-day if oyu’re lucky, and start with that .myshopify domain. It’s the core, and where the whole unique experience begins.
Shopify decided to spice things up here, by adding:
- Sections on every page: Sections based editing on all pages, provoding a truly flexible experience to edit your website.
- Master Pages: Edit the stuff that you want to appear on all pages of the website, under one section
- Drafts: Outline the changes you want to make, and once they’re ready, push them to the store.
- User Experience: The whole backpanel comes with a new user interface, and a more intuitive panel for smooth interaction
These features will become available later this year. For developers, and us, Shopify Partners, we can learn more by visitng visiting the technical documentation.
Checkout App Extensions: Subscriptions [Coming Soon]
Shopify will now have the checkout process integrated inside Shopify, so buyers will no longer be routed outside Shopify to make the transaction. This helps Partners & Developers better manage the whole subscription-of-goods process, seamless and smooth.
Stronger branding with 3D and Video
What’s better than enabling your customers, test the product in an AR environment, and significantly improve the conversion rate. Through a powerful 3D presentation of your products, you’ll drive a more powerful and professional experience for your customers. Higher engagement and better conversion.
Shopify Developers can now associate 3D renders and videos with products form the variants, via GraphQL Admin API.
Multi Language selling
Tapping into the worldwide market is never easy, since different nations, speak different languages,. With the new set of APIs from Shopify, this cross-border opportunity will be closer to you, thus, bringing you closer with your customers
Multi Currency with Shopify Payments
Until now, to enable mutli currency on your store, you were prompted to download an external app, and sync it with the store. Get rid of the old clunky apps slowing down your website speed, because now Shopify integrated it with all Shopify Merchants, not just Shopify Plus! Go multi currency!
2. Shopify POS (Point-of-Sale)
As we mentioned previously, Shopify plans to go offline, beyond just being a software company. Last year they introduced the Tap & Chip Ready for POS sales, and they’ve been powering more than 100.000 Shopify merchants who prefer face-to-face conversation with their customers, and sales directly in their store.
Top of the notch POS Terminal that has a slick design, it is lighting fast, and has the functionality you need. Faster checkout, unified backoffice for easier navigation, and KILLER DESIGN! It’s just that beautiful.
With the new POS App Extension, it helps merchants provide an even better experience for their customers, with functionality, seamless retail checkout experience, and more, integrated into one:
- Improved the discoverability in the cart during the checkout process to reduce from 4 cliks, into one seamless click. Applying a discount takes about 5 seconds.
- Appreciation: Customers feel appreciated when making online, or in-store sales.
Now that we’ve been looking at the storefront, let’s take a step back, and look under the hood. A behind-the-scenes look of what is powering this whole thing. Optimizing the checkout experiences via intuitive APIs and new features. This part is vital for management and operation of a successfully Shopify store, and we have even better tools!
- Fulfillment APIs
- Delivery Profiles API
- Order Editing APIs
- New languages for the Shopify Admin and Partner Dashboard
4. Shopify Plus
Shopify Plus powers the largest and the most powerful brands in the world, and this year they worked to provide them something to exceed their expectations, and provide something for a true growth and success, while providing options for better management.
These enourmous merchants work on the principle of having multiple stoers for different regions, and to tap into different markets, to better separate their product line for each audience.
It’s the tactic for success, in a unique way. It’s how the big ones work.
Shopify Flow is the new home inside the whole Shopify Plus Ecosystem, with user admins, assigning staff accounts being able to copy the work flow from all channels, and distribute them from one to another.
Shopify Plus Team worked closely with their merchants, and took very good notes on what can they improve. This is it.
An overall better environment for most developers, and coders of the Shopify Ecosystem to work on, and more opportunities across the whole platform.
Libraries for GraphQL – helping you write better code, with less cluster, and more easier.
Shopify App Bridge – Code library that enables apps and channels to easily and directly embed onto the Shopify Admin
Shopify App CLI – Tool to help you build apps faster
API Versioning and developer reviews
6. Fullfillment Network
This, according to us, is the biggest announcement Shopify has made on the whole 3 day event. A fulfillment network, helping merchants that sell worldwide, tap and reach their customers much faster than before.
Having a third party logistic service deliver the product to your customer, can sometime sfail, and provide poo experience for your customers, hence hindering your brand’s image.
Shipping has been a huge problem, for dropshipping. AliExpress shipping times aren’t very pleasant, and so offering good customer services was compromised.
With the introduction of the Shopify Fuifillment Network, with smart inventory allocation technologies, Shopify will try to deliver your product, in the hands of your customer, within two days from purchase.
Once you send a bulk quantity of your products to Shopify, using smart allocation technologies and AI, Shopify will sort an equal quantity to multiple fulfillment centers across the globe (starting point will be USA), and once a customer purchases on your store, the product will be shipped to your customer via the closes fulfiment center. Shopify has already tested these fulfillment centers for their own POS Tap & Chip Readers, and now they are making it available for their merchants. It it still unclear when will this feature enroll, and who will be able to use it, but we’re very eager to find out more, and we can’t wait to test this feature out.
Bye bye long shipping times!
Features that are shining a brighter light onto the e-commerce ecosystem in 2019, and 2020. And while Unite was undergoing, Shopify Stock (SHOP) went up by +20$, peaking at $337. Investors already are seeing the potential.
And now its onto us, the partners of Shopify, to deliver these features closer to merchants. We’ll be building our first stores soon to have all these new features, especially with a fulfillment center.
Follow us on Instagram at @criffelagency for more info on our client’s success, tips for e-commerce, and more updates!