Solutions for stores unable to ship

Shopify Partner
56 1 10

Please share your solutions for the small businesses who can not ship, but have stock.


If the people who ship products can not come to work...

• Similar to pre-ordering an out-of-stock item?

• Mention when you hope shipping will resume on your home page, product page & cart page?


What solutions or ideas are people finding the most effective/helpful?
Shopify Partner
56 1 10

Pause your store to keep it OPEN. Customers can browse products, and access your store, except they can not check out... the cost goes down to $14  month. You can un-PAUSE when you can ship again. :)




Pause your Shopify store

Pausing your store disables checkout but keeps your store running at a reduced cost of $14 USD per month. This means customers can see your products but can't purchase them. You can also access your Shopify admin and edit your products when you need to.


Uninstall any third-party apps that have recurring charges to avoid being billed for those apps after you pause your store.

If you want to start selling products again, then you can unpause your store at any time by choosing a new Shopify plan.


  1. Log in as the store owner.
  1. In the Store status section, click Pause store.

  2. If you agree with the terms and the charges, then click Pause store.

Your store will be paused and running at a reduced cost. When you are ready to start selling products again, you can unpause your store.
Shopify Partner
56 1 10

Because the days when some of my customers can ship are uncertain... I created a COPY of the current theme named SHIPPING and another version named NOT SHIPPING.


Each version can mention their ability to ship in these locations:

  1. A bottom-right pop-up. It appears 10 seconds after visitors arrive on any page. (non-essential)
  2. Following the words "Free shipping on orders over $50" or other mention on shipping above the product price on the product page.
  3. A Shipping Details page with the mention in the first paragraph, in bold font.
  4. On the shopping cart page.
  5. An image with text (full width) under the slide show on the home page.
  6. In the announcement bar that is visible on every page.

• We will publish the theme version as needed.

• The store will be paused when the NOT SHIPPING version is published. Pausing a store keeps your website OPEN, you can make all the usual changes and updates. The store changes from a 29$/month fee to a $14/month fee while PAUSED and customers can browse the website add to their cart, but can not check out. You can unPAUSE your store on days when you are able to ship again.


We are considering brand-integrity with these shipping/not shipping notifications. We are using images and wording that matches the brand.


I will post the option for allowing customers to check out with Gift Cards ONLY shortly.
6 0 1

Can you clarify what the customer experience is when a store is "paused"? We're in Ohio and it looks like as of Midnight tonight we may not be able to ship anything for at least a few weeks. I know we will have to put messaging across the site, but I'm seeing in some threads that if the user adds an item to their cart and tries to checkout, they just get an "Oops, something went wrong" message? Is that correct? Or is it better to "hide" the add to cart button entirely in code? Want to explore all the options in case I need to activate a plan later today. Thanks!

Community Moderator
Community Moderator
3441 258 642

Hi @dbianchi,


Nick here from Shopify. Great question! 


In the instance where you pause your Shopify store, it disables the checkout but keeps your store running at a reduced cost of $14 USD per month. If you want to start selling products again, then you can unpause your store at any time by choosing a new Shopify plan. Shopify has a help guide going into more details about this which you can see here


The button remains, but the checkout is inaccessible (displays an error message instead as you mentioned). Shopify has a guide going through the steps to remove the button should you wish to do so. You can see it here


You also talked about using an announcement bar to do this. Your best bet for this, unless it is a feature in your theme already is to use an app in the Shopify App Store. You can see some of the most popular announcement bar apps below: 


All the best, Nick

Nick | Community Moderator @ Shopify |
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Shopify Partner
56 1 10

Hi @dbianchi in Ohio :)


Pausing your store allows the complete visitor experience, with ONLY ONE caveat. The visitor can not CHECKOUT. They can add items to their cart, they can search products, view your collections, they see your usual home page, it's business as usual... until they want to complete their purchase.


I am glad you recognize the need to add a note in the announcement bar, on your cart page... as suggested in this forum thread above. We want to communicate clearly to our customers that they can not check out TODAY, or THIS WEEK, or WE WILL SHIP ON TUESDAY MARCH 31, etc... 


Yes, the OOPS page will show up when you pause your store!


You could hide the ADD TO CART BUTTON, and show your Shipping Note where the button would be found. This might be best if you plan to stay closed for a prolonged period of time. If you plan to allow shipping later in the week putting a message on the product page about when you will ship again and editing the CHECK OUT button function instead would make sense... since they will be able to return to checkout in a few days when you are shipping and their products will waiting in the saved shopping cart:


The shipping details I am using for some of the Shopify stores take the pressure off of the visitor's assumption that you will ship the same day: "All orders submitted on are processed between 9AM and 3PM (PST) Monday through Friday (except recognized bank holidays). Provided the items are in stock, your order will usually be shipped within 1-3 business days."


Remember to DUPLICATE your theme in your theme library when you make these changes, name it NOT SHIPPING (or something like that), so you can easily switch between the theme that allows check out and the one that does not.


When you pause your store the monthly fee becomes $14/month. You can un-PAUSE it at any time and your visitors will then be able to check out.


Thank you for reaching out and for your great question. This conversation will help other stores who view this thread. Post any other questions here, or write back and let us all know how you are doing and what you chose to do. If you mention more about your situation, the kind of products you sell, or what your shipping protocol usually is that could help similar stores decide what to do.


ONE MORE NOTE : Shopify is adding 'STORE PICK-UP' and 'CURBSIDE PICK-UP', this may or may not apply to your business, but it is something I will be adding to a Shopify store this week.


Here is the complete run-down on a PAUSED store:


You can DIRECT MESSAGE me if you are not permitted to share more about your business on this forum and we can talk more there.


I wish you the best. Stay safe, stay healthy!