Shopify Review

flag Customizable POS terminal
  • Fully integrated hardware

  • Built-in payment processing, competitive rates

  • Advanced inventory management

  • Accept payments anywhere with wireless hardware

Pros & Cons

  • Seamlessly integrate your online and in-person store. Keep inventory, payments, and customers in sync.
  • Rich customer profiles & integrated loyalty programs
  • Very cost-effective service fee
  • Integrated payments: Accept payments in store with low rates, quick payouts, and fully integrated Shopify hardware.
  • Shopify plan (for ecommerce) is required for POS i.e. not suited for retail only merchants
  • POS Lite is included with Shopify plan but additional upgrade to POS Pro plan is required for more advanced features
  • Not suitable for certain industries such as restaurants or grocery stores/supermarkets

Plans & Pricing

Shopify offers the first month at just $1. Users can set up their store and explore the entire platform. There’s no credit card required, but if you’d like to accept payments and publish your store, you’ll have to add your card details. There are pricing tiers you can choose from depending on your needs. The below-mentioned plans are for Shopify POS subscriptions which are added to the Shopify eCommerce and back-office plans.

Shopify Lite

The entry-level solution is $0/month and allows you to sell in person, on Facebook, and create custom invoices. Shopify POS lite comes included with all Shopify plans.

Shopify Pro

The Shopify plan costs $89/month per location and is the sweet spot among the pricing tiers. You get advanced functionality like professional reports and extra features such as gift cards and loyalty benefits.

POS Lite
$0/month
POS Pro
$89/month
Basic(e-commerce)
£24/month
Shopify(e-commerce)
£69/month
Advanced(e-commerce)
£259/month

Overview

Shopify Inc. is a Canadian multinational e-commerce company headquartered in Ottawa, Ontario. It was founded in 2004 and combines marketing, payment processing, robust inventory, listing features, and deep integrations to offer a best-in-class solution. It’s ideal for people just starting and enterprises with millions of dollars in yearly revenue.

Rating

  • "Price"
    9 /10
  • "Features"
    7 /10
  • "Ease of Use"
    9 /10
  • "Help and Support"
    8 /10

Features and Functionality

Shopify POS was built with the needs of retail stores in mind. Right out the box, you have access to split tenders, offline payments, and discount codes. When you upgrade to the Shopify plan, you unlock multiple advanced features like professional reports, refunds, cash float, and staff pin.

If you’ve ever used a content management system then you’ll understand the basics as soon as you sign up. The only issue is that reporting features are tied to your plan.

Gift cards

Most POS solutions offer gift cards as a separate add-on via a monthly subscription. With Shopify, it’s part of the Standard plan or higher and enables you to create physical or electronic gift cards. They can be redeemed in-store or through the online portal.

Custom payment types

You can accept any form of payment from IOUs to gold bullion. All you need to do is enter it as a payment type through the POS app interface and you’ll be able to select it as a payment option.

Customer profile management

Whenever there is a new customer the Shopify app prompts merchants to create a profile. As they come back to make repeat purchases, their entire order history, buying patterns, and personal details are available at a glance. With the email marketing integrations, it’s possible to sync contacts and send timely messages to increase foot traffic and online store traffic.

Staff management and Timeline

The staff management features don’t include payroll and scheduling (unless you opt for an extra integration). Instead, it’s possible to set permissions and pins to track transactions per employee. They also have a novel feature called Timeline which helps you check in and collaborate with your team.

Hardware Requirements

POS Software:

  • Turn any mobile device into a powerful point of sale. You can download the Shopify Retail POS app on to any Android or iOS smartphone or tablet.

Hardware:

  • Accept fully integrated payments with wireless hardware.
  • When using Shopify hardware, you get the benefits of Shopify payments:
    • Pay one low rate for all cards, starting from 1.5% + 0¢ AUD
    • Get paid quickly
    • Keep payment information safe
    • Accept popular payment methods

Integrations & Add-ons

Shopify itself doesn’t have many add-on services for their customers. Instead, they’ve built a world-class integrations ecosystem accessible through the app store. There are thousands of apps which are actively developed and maintained by independent vendors.

A few useful ones are:

  • LoyaltyLion: A free loyalty program that helps merchants increase repeat visits and purchases. It works both in-store and online.
  • Spently: This free solution lets merchants customize multiple touchpoints to offer complementary products and discounts which increase your average order value.
  • ActiveCampaign integration: Capture your customer’s information, purchase history, and other information and send it directly to your ActiveCampaign account. You’re able to send targeted promotional offers to encourage in-store or online purchases. Note: This is also possible with other major email marketing services.

Ease of Use

The Shopify POS system has been lauded as easy to use. It’s built like many other CMS systems so you should be able to find your way around within a few minutes to hours.

With the ease of use come tradeoffs. Shopify itself is a basic online solution and to make the most of it beyond collecting payments and tracking inventory, you’ll have to use third party plugins. This is a good thing or a bad thing depending on your perspective and can add complexity to the core software.

Customer Support

Support agents are available to answer your questions 24/7. In addition to live chat, email, and phone support, they offer a detailed knowledgebase, an insightful blog, and video tutorials.

  • 24/7 Help & Support
    Support is available to customers on all plans via multiple channels at all hours of the day.
  • Phone Support
    Phone support is available 24/7 for all customers.
  • Live Online Chat
    Live chat is available to customers 24/7 and can handle most technical challenges.
  • Email
    Email is available 24/7 for all users.
  • Video Tutorials
    Multiple video tutorials are available on the official support website and YouTube.
  • FAQ
    Shopify has a dedicated FAQ section for different aspects of their product as well as a detailed knowledgebase.
  • Community Forum
    There’s a community forum available that discusses general selling as well as Shopify related issues.
  • Blog
    The company maintains a blog that deals primarily with Shopify events and how to market your business online and offline.

Final Word

Shopify is an Ecommerce company that has made its way into the POS market. Their offering reflects that by providing merchants with the necessities needed to accept payments in-store.

One of the draws of Shopify is transparent and affordable pricing. Instead of trying to extract every dollar out of their customers, they bundle features into their standard pricing plans and removed add-ons. They also created an opportunity for third-party vendors to create native Shopify applications.

It’s a simple solution which doesn’t have the bells and whistles of other POS providers. If you plan on making online transactions a major part of your business then Shopify will give you an advantage. If you don’t care for the online aspect of retail then Shopify may hinder your growth. Considering everything, it’s a decent choice for single store retail businesses without much inventory or transaction volume.

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Daniel Ndukwu>
Daniel Ndukwu
author

Daniel is a small business owner at large helping his peers navigate the challenges they experience on a day to day basis. His philosophy is simple, if it isn’t broken you can still make it better.

We make the best effort to present up-to-date information; however, the terms of each offer can be revised according to the service provider’s discretion. The above shall not be considered as an expert or professional advice for any matter.

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