Shopify Plus vs Shopify: what are the key differences?

Shopify Plus vs Shopify: which is the best for manufacturers, when to upgrade your packages, and the best ERP for Shopify. Read all about it here.

Published: 20.04.2021

Suppose you’re deciding on choosing a Shopify plan. Where do you begin? Do you start with the Basic, Advanced, or even Shopify Plus?

Shopify is an e-commerce platform that gives you the tools to:

  • Start
  • Grow
  • Manage a business

It offers different packages, making it the perfect tool for micro, small, and even medium-sized businesses.

In this article, we’re going to look into Shopify Plus vs Shopify to give you the information necessary to know if you’re ready to upgrade to Shopify Plus and the best ERP tool to help you support this growth.

PRO TIP: Many D2C manufacturers turn to Shopify due to its ability to run a store and handle inventory. However, Shopify inventory management isn’t built for manufacturers. It’s essential to consider integrating a Shopify Plus Certified App ERP system to help you stay on top of the different inventory types that need to be tracked.

Shopify Plus vs Shopify - one is catered for large enterprises while the other for start-ups and SMBs.

What is Shopify Plus?

Shopify Plus essentially is the same as Shopify, but it’s been overhauled to cater to SMBs and larger enterprises that typically earn around $1 – $2 million or more in annual revenue.

Both Shopify and Plus (this includes Advanced Shopify vs Shopify Plus) have the following features:

  • Multi-channel integrations (scroll down to Shopify Plus benefits section to see how Plus has the edge on the other payment plans)
  • Abandoned cart recovery
  • Multi-currency selling (when using Shopify Payments on Shopify Lite, Basic, and Advanced)

But, a large part of the difference between Shopify and Shopify Plus is that Plus takes everything to the next level with more customizability.

But let’s explore this in greater detail.

PRO TIP: Inventory management is possible on all Shopify plans. The only issue is that it’s not optimized to support manufacturers who need to track raw materials, WIP, and finished goods inventory. That’s why many manufacturers adopt Shopify inventory software to bridge the gap between sales and manufacturing.

Advanced Shopify vs Shopify Plus will be the biggest decision for manufacturers whose business crosses the $1 million of annual revenue.

The Difference between Shopify and Shopify Plus

As already mentioned, the difference between Shopify and Shopify Plus is the amount of customization it offers you, especially when it comes to design flexibility.

When you’re signed up with Shopify Plus you can expect to find:

  • Increased customization and control
  • More automation capabilities
  • Improved functions for multichannel and omnichannel selling
  • Increased speeds and loading times
  • The ability to handle large amounts of traffic and sales

Below is are described the exact differences between Shopify and Shopify Plus before explaining the features Shopify Plus gives its users.

Shopify Lite

You can consider Shopify Lite as the starter pack for merchants looking for a POS or selling via other channels and want a buy button. Shopify Lite starts at $9/month.

Basic Shopify

Ideal for startups, new businesses, or online business which are starting to sell in-person.

  • Two staff accounts
  • 24/7 support
  • Unlimited products
  • Online store with a blog
  • Sales Channels
  • Free SSL certificate;
  • Discount codes;
  • Manual order creation
  • Abandoned cart recovery.

Shopify Basic starts at $9/month.


Similar to Basic Shopify but with more competitive rates and more features, including:

  • Gift cards
  • Report builder
  • More POS features

You also have up to 5 users with Shopify. Pricing starts at $79/month.

Advanced Shopify

Advanced Shopify comes with everything the other plans have but increases the number of staff accounts you can have and give you an advanced report builder and third-party shipping. Advanced Shopify starts at $299/month.

Shopify Plus

Shopify Plus has everything the other packages have but is catered for SMB’s who generate over $1 million in sales revenue. The Plus plan gives users:

  • API access
  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • Exclusive apps
  • Customizability
  • Much more.

Shopify Plus starts at $2,000/month.

PRO TIP: Shopify Plus vs Shopify: both are great for handling sales at any stage of your business’s growth. But, what about manufacturing? Well, not so much. Overhaul sales and manufacturing with a Shopify order management system.

Shopify vs Shopify Plus: If your business is just starting out, the choice will become pretty obvious with the pricing plans.

Shopify Plus Features

It might be confusing that, in its essence, Shopify and Shopify Plus are largely the same. So, to highlight why you should upgrade, here is a list of Shopify Plus features:

API Access

The smaller packages of Shopify have API access. However, with Shopify Plus, you get an increased API access call limit that’s essential for handling high volumes of orders with integrated 3rd party software such as an ERP system.

This increased access also comes with access to exclusive API Shopify Plus features such as:

  • Gift cards – Manage your store’s gift cards outside of Shopify’s native dashboard
  • User – Manage staff accounts outside of Shopify’s native dashboard
  • Multipass – Integrate and merge the credentials of your Shopify account with other websites or forums you own

PRO TIP: API access is a massive advantage for tweaking all your systems to perform perfectly within your workflow. That’s why it’s crucial to find an ERP system with an e-commerce API to have all your business apps working at maximum efficiency.


Larger manufacturing enterprises need a huge amount of bandwidth to support traffic passing through their Shopify store. Shopify Plus gives users access to unlimited bandwidth and 200TB of storage to make sure their account easily supports a high influx of traffic and products being sold.


Shopify Flow, which is only available to Shopify Plus users, is an app for setting up automation for every aspect of your business, including:

  • Customer support
  • Marketing
  • Inventory control
  • Order management
  • Risk management
  • Much more


If you’re a fan of flash sales or big product launch events, then Launchpad is for you. Just like Flow, Launchpad is only available for Shopify Plus users and allows them to efficiently plan and automate processes for successfully:

  • Releasing products
  • Applying discounts to individual products and collections
  • Organizing campaigns

Launchpad comes equipped with an analytics dashboard so you can run reports and make better business decisions using this information.

Checkout Customization

Shopify Plus benefits all lie with having access to Shopify’s underlying code. One example is how you can customize your checkout page, meaning you can:

  • Provide a branded checkout experience
  • Make conversion optimization tweaks
  • Fix any technical concerns which could stunt your growth

Script Editor

Another Shopify Plus exclusive app is the Script Editor which allows users to:

  • Edit the store’s metrics
  • Bundle products together
  • Offer promotions like a free item with a purchase
  • Offer special deals for big purchases or to specific customers

The Script Editor allows you to easily change shipping methods and offer discounts on shipping.

Advanced Shopify vs Shopify Plus: this won’t be a question of one of the other, but when to upgrade from Advanced to Plus.

What Are the Shopify Plus Benefits?

As you’ve probably already noticed, when it comes to Shopify Plus vs Shopify, Plus offers those working in a large enterprise the tools to take a more hands-on approach to managing their business.

Looking into Shopify Plus vs Shopify it’s easy to see the massive amount of Shopify Plus benefits that come with the package, and just to name a few you can expect to find:

  • Improved inventory management – with the native Shopify functionality or by integrating Shopify inventory management software for manufacturers
  • Integrations – the Shopify App Store gets you access to tons of integrations, including exclusive apps for Shopify Plus users
  • Order management and fulfillment – automate your workflow and safeguard your data accuracy. Shopify Plus automatically routes orders based on the destination from the nearest warehouse

And that’s not all.

So, what exactly are the Shopify Plus benefits you can reap when you upgrade to this plan?

Store Cloning and Multi-Channel Selling

Shopify Plus gives users the chance to create nine additional store clones, which allows you to support your business with international trade by giving you the opportunity to:

  • Have different top-level domains (.com,,, etc.) for each clone
  • Have clones translated into different languages
  • Handle different currencies
  • Target seasonal trends with localized marketing

Wholesale/B2B Functionality

Not only does Shopify Plus give you the tools to manage your direct-to-consumer brand , but the “Wholesale channel” gives clients a separate, password-protected business-to-business (B2B) store.

  • This allows you to:
  • Set tiered and custom pricing for buyers
  • Have bulk discounts
  • Configure shipping requirements
  • Add wholesale-only products
  • Review and edit an order before sending an invoice

PRO TIP: As a Shopify manufacturer, you’ll need to find Smart Manufacturing Software that can help you manage your D2C and B2B sales too. That’s why it’s essential to find wholesale software that can help you manage multi-channel selling.

Unlimited Staff Accounts

Shopify Plus allows you to have as many staff accounts as your heart desires. Comparing this to the other plans, Advanced Shopify vs Shopify Plus is the closest with 15 staff accounts with Advanced and unlimited staff accounts with Plus.

Lower Transaction Fees

One thing that hasn’t been touched upon within this article is the transaction fees for selling via Shopify, which you can find with the Shopify pricing plans.

But, for a quick comparison:

Advanced Shopify vs Shopify Plus

Advanced Shopify = 0.5% per transaction

Shopify Plus = 0.15% per transaction

NOTE: This is with 3rd party transaction fees. If you use Shopify Payments, both Advanced Shopify and Shopify Plus have 0% transaction fees.

Customer Support

Once you sign up for Shopify Plus, you can expect to be taken care of by the customer support team. As a Plus merchant, you get access to a Launch Manager, someone over at Shopify who’ll help you along the way as you build and migrate your online stores.

You’ll also be assigned a Merchant Success Manager to provide ongoing assistance post-launch.

This also includes the other Shopify assistance resources you have access to, such as:

Page Activity

COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the need for manufacturers and other businesses to have processes in place to be able to do remote work.

Shopify Plus users get access to a feature that helps them support remote collaboration. If you can see if another staff member is editing the same page and if someone decides to save, the other person will also be notified to help you avoid losing progress.

Although it’s expensive the Shopify Plus features will be more than enough to justify migrating over to this plan.

Shopify Plus vs Shopify: Which Should You Choose

So, Shopify vs Shopify Plus, which is best for you? Ultimately, every plan has its strengths and benefits.

Which Shopify plan you should get set up with all depends on your business’s needs.

If you’re setting up an online store for the first time, the Basic Shopify plan will be suitable.

Or even using WooCommerce or another e-commerce platform might be a better alternative in the beginning.

However, if you’re already established and generating 1000s of sales, Shopify Plus would be better.

If you’re already a large enterprise selling on another platform that needs more features and support, migrating over to Shopify Plus could be the solution to all your problems.

Regardless of which stage you’re at, manufacturers selling on Shopify also need to stay vigilant for an ERP system that can support them at every stage of their business.

Katana Smart Manufacturing Software has been built to support entrepreneurs just starting or SMB manufacturers with multiple factories and warehouses, giving users scalability and the tools to help them once their business becomes a powerhouse.

Experience the power of your sales and manufacturing orders being fully integrated and automated with Katana’s 14-day free trial.

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