There’s plenty of buzz surrounding Shopify’s Basic Plan. At only $29 per month, you can create a fully functional e-commerce store.
But did you know that Shopify has an even less expensive plan?
It’s called Shopify Lite, and it’s available for an unbelievably low price of $9 per month. There is a stipulation, though, and it’s that Shopify Lite is for existing websites.
So if you already have an existing website or blog, the Shopify Lite Plan allows you to turn it into a store. There are also some other handy uses for Shopify’s Lite Plan. So if you’ve been asking, “How does Shopify Lite work?” You’re in the right place. Stay tuned for our review and breakdown of Shopify’s most affordable monthly plan.
What’s Shopify Lite All About Anyway?
Shopify Lite is the baby brother of the Basic Plan. You can also think of it as the black sheep among all the Shopify subscription plans. While it’s the most affordable plan, it also gets the least amount of promotion.
That’s because Shopify Lite doesn’t let you build a storefront with a shopping cart.
Instead, Shopify Lite integrates with existing web pages, blogs, and social media pages.
What does that mean? It means that you can transform your blog or website into a store with complete payment processing. Let’s consider an example. You’re blogging about fitness with WordPress, and you have a significant following. That’s when you decide that you want to start selling branded water bottles and sweatshirts.
By signing up for Shopify Lite at $9 per month, you can directly sell your merch through your blog. Therein lies the main appeal of the Shopify Lite Plan. It’s for existing website owners that want to add selling capabilities to their pages.
In the example mentioned above, you worked hard to build your blog. It’s where all your readers go to interact with you, so it only makes sense that you’d want to sell there. Creating a new store from scratch wouldn’t make sense in this case. That’s why Shopify Lite exists, and it can come in very handy if you use it right.
Existing Website Owners Only
It’s essential to be clear here; you can’t build a storefront from scratch with Shopify Lite. So if you aim to create an e-commerce brand with a storefront, you need the Basic Plan. It’s still very affordable at $29 per month and will allow you to customize a unique storefront.
Conversely, if you have a wildly successful social media page and want to sell merch through it, Shopify Lite is a lifesaver. It’s by far the most affordable way to add the ability to sell products to your existing pages.
Shopify Lite is also perfect for pop-up stores. Let’s say that there’s a fitness conference coming up that’s perfect for your merchandise. With Shopify Lite, you can accept credit cards on the fly. In fact, they include a tap, chip, and credit card reader for free. These readers are perfect for mobile stores and pop-up stores. We’ll go into more detail on this later.
Selling Products Through Social Media Pages
Are all your followers on Facebook and nowhere else? Then Shopify Lite is undoubtedly something to consider. With it, you’ll have a Facebook store that integrates with your main page.
From there, you can easily advertise your new store to your existing followers.
Another perk is that your followers won’t have to leave Facebook to make a purchase. That’s very convenient, and it’s another area where Shopify Lite shines.
You’re able to sell your products on the social media page that you’ve worked so hard to develop.
It takes years to accumulate lots of followers. If you had to build a new e-commerce store from scratch, it’s akin to negating all that hard work. It’s hard enough to get someone to click on a link, let alone visit an entirely different website. Shopify Lite enables you to put your products in front of your followers, wherever they are online.
More good news is that you can add product galleries and a shopping cart inside Facebook. Not only that, but it automatically syncs with the products that you have listed in your Shopify Plan. That saves you from having to upload products more than once.
That even applies when you make changes to your products within Shopify. If you change an image, price, or description in the dashboard, it will update in Facebook too.
Payment processing is secure, and you get to use Shopify’s unique checkout template within Facebook. Customers can even save their contact and payment information inside of Facebook. That makes it convenient for users to make multiple purchases without having to re-enter their info.
Shopify Lite for Your Blog or Personal Website
The Shopify Buy button can go on any type of webpage. Most commonly, they go on personal websites (physicians, service providers, etc.) or blogs. You can embed a Buy button, modules for collections, and shopping carts.
Essentially, you’re adding a mini-online store to your blog or website. That way, you can sell merchandise without having to create a new store.
If you have a blog with a dedicated following, Shopify Lite can provide tremendous value for you. The same is true if you run a brick-and-mortar business with a website.
Why not try your hand at the e-commerce world by selling some products through your website?
An example would be a local hardware store adding a Buy button to their website. That way, customers can buy hammers, nails, and accessories without having to visit the store. This technique can add extra revenue to physical stores. You never know; you may end up selling more products online than in person!
Shopify Lite for Accepting Credit Cards On the Fly
If you want to sell both online and offline, Shopify Lite is a great plan. For only $9 a month, you gain the ability to sell products at pop-up stores. All you need is a table, your products, and Shopify’s tap, chip, and swipe reader provided free with your account.
You can also use Shopify’s Point of Sale app to process payments if you have a computer. Now you can make money on the road wherever you go.
So if there’s a conference, craft show, or farmers market that’s perfect for your products, now you can go. Shopify Lite makes it effortless to set up a mobile store. You can accept cash, credit, and other forms of payment.
Moreover, your inventory will be tracked across all channels. So if you’re selling at a pop-up store, Shopify will still keep track of everything you sell. It will show up in your financial reports to use for analytical purposes.
You can process any form of payment and apply discounts, gift cards, customize taxes, and do refunds. If you often sell at pop-up stores, then Shopify Lite is a must. It will make your life a lot easier when it comes to processing payments and keeping track of your inventory.
Shopify Lite for Sending and Processing Invoices
Does your company process lots of custom, phone, or wholesale orders? Then you’ll love Shopify Lite for its invoicing capabilities. You can send out invoices and accept payments from customers without any hassle. You can quickly and easily create invoices using Shopify Lite. Here’s how the process works.
You write up a custom invoice containing the customer products, tax, and any discounts. From there, you send it to the customer, who reviews it and then makes the payment. They will do so through the Shopify Lite shopping cart. It’s pretty similar to other invoicing tools, so you won’t have a hard time getting the hang of it. In addition to invoicing, you have tools for selling both on and offline, which is a plus.
Shopify Lite Vs. Shopify Basic Plan
Now let’s make a direct comparison between Shopify Lite and the Basic Plan. That way, you can know for sure which is best for your business needs. For example, if you already have a blog but would still like an e-commerce store, you may opt for the Basic Plan.
Shopify Lite’s Features
Shopify Lite has no website-builder included in the plan. Instead, it allows you to embed a ‘Buy’ button on an existing webpage. It can be a blog, traditional website, or social media page.
It adds a lot more than a simple button, though. You’ll gain access to Shopify’s excellent payment processing. That way, you can process customer payments and ship products using the plan. You can think of Shopify Lite as taking the features of Shopify and adding them to your website. The catch is that you need an existing website to use it.
You can also process payments in-person with Shopify Lite. For example, if you sell fruits and veggies at your local farmer’s market, you can use Shopify Lite to process credit cards. Shopify will send you a credit card reader free of charge. Not only that, but you’ll be able to access Shopify’s Point of Sale app, which is perfect for payment processing on the go.
Other features include:
- Shopify Point of Sale app
- A free Shopify card reader for pop-up stores and farmers markets
- Gift cards
- Overview dashboard
- Financial report for analytics
- The ability to embed a ‘Buy’ button
- Shopify’s payment processing
Missing features include:
- Shopify store builder
- Online store sales channel
- Phone support
- Shopify theme editor
- The ability to download apps and themes
- SSL certificate
Shopify Basic Plan Features
If you don’t have a website and want to build one through Shopify, you need the Basic Plan. It runs at an affordable $29 per month, and it comes with some fantastic features. It’s the flagship subscription plan of Shopify for a reason. You get a built-in store builder and theme editor. You can use Shopify’s App Store to download thousands of apps to add new functionalities.
You can start print-on-demand and dropshipping businesses with the Shopify Basic Plan.
These are low-risk business models that are perfect for new entrepreneurs.
So if you’re just starting and have no presence on the web, the Shopify Basic Plan is for you. You’ll get the chance to build a custom store from scratch so that you can start building your reputation. You can build a brand with the Shopify Basic Plan. From there, you can keep scaling up your business as much as you want.
Essential features of the Shopify Basic Plan include:
- Shopify online store builder
- Custom theme editor
- SSL certificate
- Custom URL
- Access to the Shopify App Store and Theme Marketplace
- Free theme editing tutorials for beginners
- A built-in blogging engine
- Shopify Point of Sale app
- Gift card features
- Financial reports
- Acquisition reports
- Behavior reports
- Marketing report
As you can see, the Shopify Basic plan has far more advanced features than Shopify Lite.
Yet, Shopify Lite has its place. For existing website users, Shopify Lite is a dream. Now you can finally start selling merchandise through your wildly popular social media page. In these cases, creating a new store from scratch wouldn’t be wise at all. The idea is to market your products to your followers, who are glued to your social media page. Shopify Lite allows you to do just that.
If you’re a brand-new entrepreneur with no presence online, Shopify Basic is the way to go. With it, you can start building your brand online with a fully customizable store. You can also reach out to developers on the Shopify Expert Marketplace. They can help you design a savvy storefront that attracts new customers.
- The Verdict: It’s going to depend on your needs as a business owner. For those with personal websites, Shopify Lite is a no-brainer. For budding business owners, Shopify Basic has the most value.
How does Shopify Lite work? By integrating with existing blogs, personal websites, and social media pages. If you already have a large online following, you probably don’t want to mess with building a new store. Shopify Lite is unique in that it lets you retain your followers while selling directly to them. At only $9 a month, it should be a no-brainer for existing website owners. For everyone else, you’ll get the most value out of Shopify’s Basic Plan.
For more great content to help you develop your Shopify strategies, check out the rest of the merchant posts on the site. If you want to see a list of our top recommended Shopify apps visit this link here.