These features, showcased in Shopify’s first-ever biannual Shopify Editions, further position Shopify as an enterprise-ready platform and are aimed at providing merchants with new and improved ways to find customers, convert shoppers, build relationships, and scale fast.
Here, I'll highlight some noteworthy additions that could dramatically improve the platform for enterprise-level businesses.
1. Hydrogen and Oxygen
Shopify has amplified its headless commerce capabilities with the introduction of Hydrogen and Oxygen, empowering businesses to create truly unique online experiences for customers. Merchants can now build one-of-a-kind headless storefronts fast using Hydrogen’s React-based framework with prebuilt templates and components—including integrations into content management systems (CMSs) Sanity and Contentful as well as other providers such as Dynamic Yield, Algolia, Nosto, and Klaviyo, enabling quick deployments of best-in-class stacks. When ready to launch, these storefronts can then be deployed on Oxygen, Shopify’s global hosting solution, capable of managing massive amounts of traffic. This dynamic duo presents a great opportunity for highly visual and content-rich brands to create standout experiences.
2. B2B on Shopify
Shopify’s reinvented B2B functionality includes access to a suite of customizable features such as discounts (for creating discount codes, setting up automatic discounts, or setting sale prices for individual products), custom themes, and new Shopify application programming interfaces (APIs), making it easier than ever to sell wholesale. Merchants can use these tools either in a blended store (B2B and D2C) or in a dedicated expansion store targeting B2B customers. Although it is launching with a comparably basic feature set for a true B2B platform, we expect to see a rapid release schedule over time.
3. Tokengated Commerce
Gearing up for the digital future, Shopify has plugged into the cryptocurrency space with its Tokengated Commerce platform. Customers can connect their crypto wallets to a Shopify-hosted store and access special perks like exclusive merchandise, collaborations with other brands, IRL (in real life) experiences, and more with their non-fungible tokens (NFTs). This feature creates ample opportunity for retailers to reach and attract new customer demographics.
4. Checkout Extensibility
Shopify Plus merchants can now customize their checkouts with powerful apps and branding tools (for example, loyalty programs, recommended products, and more). Secure, fast, and upgrade-safe, Checkout Extensibility opens up the checkout to new features, such as cross- and up-sells or capturing additional customer details. This update solves one of the prominent critiques we hear of the Shopify platform, the inflexibility of the checkout, and offers a great opportunity for partners, app developers, and customers alike.
5. Shopify Functions
Shopify previously allowed complex business rules to be implemented during checkout via Shopify Scripts; however, this was limited to the Ruby programming language and could be technically challenging with its set of limitations. Built to be scalable and fast, Shopify Functions is its successor, allowing the flexibility of an open-source platform without the added complexities that normally accompany decoupled solutions. Starting with discounts, developers can customize the back-end logic to build offers such as volume discounts fast when, for instance, confronted with a major sales event—all without compromising the checkout experience.
6. Discount Combinations
Shopify has finally done away with its rigid one-discount-code-at-a-time rule, creating new avenues for attracting, converting, and retaining customers through stacked discount codes and automation. This feature also provides a golden opportunity for businesses to promote new products, empty old stock, and clear out unsold products.
7. Pre-orders and more with Purchasing Options
Providing flexible purchase options guarantees customer satisfaction, increases trustworthiness, accelerates the buying processes, and decreases shopping cart abandonment rates. With this in mind, Shopify has stepped up its payment and fulfillment capabilities, offering more pre-orders, subscriptions, and "try before you buy" purchasing options. Although merchants will still need a Partner app to make use of this functionality, the logic itself is now fully integrated into the core platform.
8. Shopify Markets
Previously a major Shopify merchant pain point, Shopify’s out-of-the-box internationalization capabilities now simplify international selling by making it easier to run a global presence from a single store. Using Shopify Markets, businesses can set price lists and domains by market, sell in each market's local currency and language, and collect duties and import taxes at checkout. With continuous development and new features, Markets is now becoming an attractive option for the enterprise world.
Including the above features, Shopify’s new ecommerce capabilities mark the company’s shift from D2C to what it calls Connect to Consumer (C2C), a new era of digital commerce that embraces the importance of building meaningful relationships between merchants and customers.
Ready to establish solid, long-lasting relationships with your customers and launch your platform into the new era of digital commerce? Connect with our Shopify experts.