If you are planning on launching an affiliate program for your Shopify store, read this post first. You will learn about the ins and outs of Shopify affiliate marketing. This should help you make a conscious decision whether to follow this path or not.
Planning on starting an eCommerce business? There are lots of tasks you need to attend to at the outset: choosing a company name, developing a business plan, finding suppliers, and the list goes on.
One of the key decisions to make at this stage is also picking a suitable platform for your online store. It must be easy to manage, fast, secure, and extensible.
If you have chosen Shopify, we can only congratulate you. This powerful eCommerce system is a true find for every online merchant. It is a breeze to set up and run even by those who have never had experience administering Internet stores before.
The question you will want to ask next is probably, “How much will it cost my business to create and maintain a Shopify store?” Unfortunately, there is no straightforward answer. Shopify developer rates differ from company to company. Some other factors determine the total amount of the bill as well.
Below, we discuss these aspects and present ballpark numbers. Hopefully, this information will give you an idea about how much Shopify website development costs.
What Affects the Total Price of a Shopify Store
As we said earlier, the final cost of a Shopify development project depends on certain conditions. If you are serious about building an online business that brings revenue, you should allocate a budget to cover the following items:
- Shopify Subscription Plan
- Theme/Template (Free, Paid, or Custom)
- Shopify Applications
- Professional Shopify development services
Let’s go over each of those in detail.
First Things First: Choosing a Shopify Pricing Plan
You probably know that Shopify is a fully hosted eCommerce platform, with every brand that wants to use it running their website on one of the vendor’s servers. Thus, you will have to pay a monthly subscription fee to keep your store operating.
Shopify offers three main pricing plans.
This one currently costs $29/month and is the best choice for novice online merchants. By subscribing to the Basic plan, you get a fully functional online store to start selling your goods immediately.
That being said, you won’t be able to use some features available on the other plans. For example, if you intend to reach an international audience, there is no way to adapt your prices per country. In addition, the credit card rate with Shopify payments is higher for the Basic plan subscribers (2.9% + 30¢) compared to the other plans (2.6% + 30¢ and 2.4% + 30¢).
This plan, currently set at $79/month, is the best fit for established online businesses that want to expand their online and offline operations. Apart from a lower credit card rate, the Shopify plan features professional reporting and an international pricing option.
This plan is meant for even larger stores that are still growing. Its most distinctive feature is advanced reporting. This is also the best option for merchants who want to conquer international markets, thanks to the ability to fine-tune prices per country or region. The Advanced plan subscription fee is $299/month at the moment of writing.
If you are just starting out on your eCommerce journey, we recommend choosing the Basic plan. It gives you all the right tools without biting too much off your budget.
Note: There is also the Shopify Plus option. That is a true eCommerce powerhouse for enterprise-level stores. Currently, its price starts at $2,000 per month. Since we have written this post with small and medium-sized businesses in mind, we don’t discuss Shopify Plus here.
The next thing you should do is choose a suitable theme/template for your storefront. The vendor offers a plethora of themes through its official marketplace. You can either download a completely free theme or a paid one for your business sector (Clothes and Accessories, Home and Garden, etc.).
Paid themes are more customizable and offer more design options. That means you have more freedom in aligning the design to your brand. Besides, paid themes come with many advanced features out of the box (e.g., detailed product filtering). Thus, you won’t have to install additional apps. That’s an advantage: the more apps you integrate, the slower your store gets.
Free themes are more restrictive both in design and functionality. You can change some colors, fonts, and images, but the layout will remain the same. The result? Thousands of similar-looking stores without a ghost of a chance to stay in customers’ memory.
While a paid theme is a better alternative, you will hit its limit sooner or later when trying to grow your business. To make a theme truly unique and flexible, you need to hire a professional Shopify designer and developer. Before we discuss their fees, though, let’s take a look at another important aspect: applications.
Off the shelf, Shopify provides plenty of features that allow online merchants to manage their inventory, shipping, payments, and so on. These features do their job well enough, but you can manage your store even more efficiently by installing Shopify apps.
For example, consider Klaviyo. This great tool automates personalized email marketing and SMS campaigns, helping merchants acquire and retain customers. It is easy to set up and use by everyone. Our clients often ask us to integrate Klaviyo into their stores. Read this case study, for instance.
Just like themes, the vendor provides both free and premium apps. Before you start building a store, do some research and make a list of all the apps that can give your business real value. Then add up all the fees you will have to pay for using the apps you have selected.
If you are not sure which apps you need, contact us. With our years-long experience, we can precisely identify the apps you can benefit from the most. We will also offer you our own custom solutions to let you save on monthly subscription fees.
More often than not, an app should not only perform its task effectively but also mirror the style of the entire store. One example is an online chat. It shouldn’t look like a foreign body. For example, read this case study to learn how we integrated the Crisp chat into our client’s Shopify store.
To align the style of an app with that of your website, you will need assistance from professional Shopify designers and developers. Let’s talk about their fees next.
Shopify Development Services
Choosing a theme and selecting apps for your store are only part of the story. You can certainly try to customize your Shopify website yourself. Mind, though, that to achieve the desired effect, you need to look “under the hood.”
Many customization tasks require a deep knowledge of Liquid – Shopify’s default templating language. One wrong line of code can cause the entire site to crash, leading to a loss of revenue and customers’ loyalty.
Requesting professional assistance is a wiser move. You won’t have to worry about the technical side of things and will be able to focus on your business. When you hire a Shopify developer, their fee basically depends on two things:
- Their experience
- The scope and complexity of your project
Here is how these factors can shape the total price.
The Developer’s Experience
Just like in any area, the Shopify web development cost can be larger or smaller based on the developer’s background. The more time a developer has been working with the platform, the larger his/her fee is. That’s quite natural.
Shopify (web) developers’ hourly rates on codementor.io, for example, are from $81 to $100/hour. This represents the higher end of the spectrum.
On some other freelance platforms, prices start at $30/hour. We strongly discourage you from hiring developers with such low rates since this almost always means an inferior quality.
The price range we recommend considering is $45-$55/hour. That is when you can expect a decent quality at a reasonable cost. Our Shopify theme development rates are $50/hour, and we always deliver well-tested themes made by following the best industry standards.
The Project Size and Complexity
Another important factor when it comes to Shopify development is complexity. A large Shopify store with hundreds of pages and a ton of cutting-edge features is naturally way more expensive than a small website.
Here is what you may have to pay depending on the project scope and complexity.
- A Small Online Store with a Customized Theme
This is a store like this one. It has just a few pages and some basic functionality. A Shopify developer will tweak the code of the theme you have selected in accordance with your requirements and add some essential features for a better customer experience. On average, prepare to spend $1,500-$2,000 in developer fees.
- A Medium-Sized Online Store
If you want a medium-sized Internet store, the cost goes up. The price depends on the number of pages and features you need your website to have, interactivity options, and unique graphic elements. On average, expect to spend from $2,500 to $5,000
- A Custom Shopify Online Store Tailored to a Specific Brand
This is by far the most expensive option, but one that many Shopify store owners prefer as it brings them the highest return on investment.
A large custom Shopify store is a multi-page website with a unique brand style, high-quality visual materials, and a well-thought structure and navigation. It takes quite a lot of resources and time to build and test it properly. Correspondingly, its price is much heftier than that of the previous two types of sites.
Prepare to pay $7,000-$35,000 for a store like that.
Examples of Calculating the Shopify Website Development Cost
Now, knowing about the key factors that determine the price tag for building a Shopify store, let’s do some calculations. We chose the following setups for our example stores:
Apps: Mailchimp (Essentials) – $11/month, Tidio (Communicator Plan) – $15/month, ShipStation (Bronze Plan) – $29/month
Theme: Editions – $150 USD
Apps: Mailchimp (Standard) – $17/month, Tidio (Communicator Plan) – $15/month, ShipStation (Gold Plan) – $69/month
Theme: Custom/Any paid theme
Apps: Mailchimp (Premium) – $299/month, Tidio (Chatbots Plan) – $39/month, ShipStation (Enterprise Plan) – $159/month.
Here is what we got:
|Recurring Expenses||Non-Recurring Expenses||Total|
|Subscription (monthly)||Apps |
|Large store||$299||$497||varied||From $7,000||$7,796 upwards|
The Shopify Development Services from PSD2HTML
Our company is a pioneer of the web and eCommerce development industry, established in 2005. As soon as Shopify was released, we realized its great power and business value. Since then, we have developed hundreds of top-notch Shopify themes and customized thousands of others.
Among the rest, we offer you these Shopify development services:
- Integrating apps. We can make your store convenient and customer-friendly by integrating popular email marketing (Mailchimp, SendGrid, ActiveCampaign, etc.), social media (Facebook, Twitter, etc.), or analytics (Google Analytics) apps. Not only will they do what you need but also reflect your brand style.
- Customizing your store’s UI and UX. As an online store owner, you should realize the importance of user experience. If your website is hard to navigate and its interface is a mess, this can negatively impact your conversion rate. With our deep knowledge of the best UX and interface design principles, we can adjust your store for the best customer experience.
- Creating custom Shopify themes. Stand out from the crowd with a unique, engaging theme that none of your competitors can boast. You can either give us your own design or let our expert web designers transform your ideas into reality.
Our Shopify developer hourly rate is currently $50/hour. The price of the entire project, as we have already explained, depends on the kind of business problem you want us to solve as well as on the size and complexity of your website.
Just describe your needs in the Project brief field on the Order page and get back a precise quote and ETA within one business day.