Shopify Charges Canadian Stores in USD

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Tourist
8 0 3

I would like to know if all Canadian merchants are aware that Shopify charges Canadian Stores in USD and are in agreement to it.

What this means, in effect, is that this is what the real charges on the BASIC PLAN are (as of jan 15, 2014 exchange rates and including credit card conversion charges):  3.3% + 33.6 cents per transaction (as opposed to the advertised rate of 2.9%+.30).  Of course it is more now as the Canadian $ tumbles, and who knows what it will be 6 months from  now!

I recently joined Shopify and was completely taken aback when my first bill was charged in USD.  I am a small independent Canadian shop and was thrilled to be able to use a Canadian ecommerce company.  I read thoroughly through the information on the Shopify website (including TOS) and studied the plans carefully, did the 14 day trial with many chats & calls to support for clarification on many things including billing & charges.   It was never mentioned anywhere or by anyone that all charges were in USD.  When I called to say  there was an error on my credit card I was then  told that all charges are in USD.  When I complained that it was not mentioned anywhere, this is the reply I received:  As of now, it only mentions the charge here when you're picking the plan: 

Your credit card will be charged for the monthly basic plan of $13.30 USD on January 23, 2014.
This will cover your Shopify subscription from: January 23, 2014 to February 13, 2014.

As you can see it is easy to miss the only mention of USD especially if you are not looking for it.  For the same reason I missed it on the invoice.

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Shopify Staff (Retired)
Shopify Staff (Retired)
8 0 0

Hi Tina,

Thanks for raising this issue. I wanted to first clarify the fees that you are referencing. There are two types of fees you mentioned, one is our monthly subscription fee and the other is our credit card processing rate (2.9% + 30¢ per transaction).

The credit card processing rate is applied when you use Shopify Payments to accept credit cards. You’ll be charged this rate in the currency your store uses, for example your rate would be in Canadian dollars. This fee only applies on transaction made through your online store.

The second fee you mentioned, the monthly subscription fee, is charged in USD. This is the fee you saw on your credit card bill. You’re correct that we don’t properly state that the fee is in USD on our Canadian website, and we’re updating the page to properly reflect this.

Please let me know if you have any further questions.

Thanks,

Chris

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Tourist
8 0 3

Hi Chris,  thanks for clarifying this.  It's the complete opposite of what i was told this morning on my chat. 

I still have a couple of questions:

  1. since you are a Canadian company, exactly why do you charge Canadian customers in USD
  2. why is the USD hidden on the .ca site, but written on the pricing page in the uk site

On the whole and especially in light of the falling Canadian dollar, don't you think it would be fairer, more transparent, and just plain easier if you just came out and charged Canadians more for your services:  e.g. $33 instead of $29 for the BASIC PLAN.  At least that way everything is up front and in the open and merchants would know what they needed to budget for the service.

 

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Shopify Staff (Retired)
Shopify Staff (Retired)
8 0 0

Hi Tina,

I'm finding out some more details and following up with our support team on what they explained to you.

As for your specific questions, 

since you are a Canadian company, exactly why do you charge Canadian customers in USD

We charge in USD due to accounting reasons. I'm not sure on the specific details, but I'll try to find more info.

why is the USD hidden on the .ca site, but written on the pricing page in the uk site

This is being fixed, it was not our intention to hide the fact we charge in USD. It was accidentally removed recently and will be updated with the correct language. With the website update, we'll be a lot clearer on how our customers are being charged.

Please let me know if you have any further questions.

Chris

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Tourist
8 0 3

Thanks for your reply to my questions, Chris.  I would be really interested to know the accounting reasons for charging in USD.  My husband and I had our own company for 20 years selling to Canadian retailers all over Canada, and for the last 5 of those years imported from overseas (paying in USD) as well as sold to the US. Yet we always charged our Canadian customers in CAD.  I was in charge of accounting, and it was a bit of a pain in the neck, but certainly not enough to charge our Canadian customers in USD.  There are a multitude of Canadian companies who sell to both the US and Canada, and only bill Canadian customers in CAD.

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Tourist
8 0 3

Hi Chris,

Any details on those 'accounting reasons' yet?

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Shopify Staff (Retired)
Shopify Staff (Retired)
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My apologies, Tina. I don't have anything to report yet.

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Tourist
8 0 3

Thanks Chris,  I'll keep waiting.  One more question though:  has Shopify always charged Canadian customers in USD, and if not when did they start?

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Tourist
10 0 1

I came up here for the exact same thing. I've been a Shopify member since last spring and was surprised to be billed in US dollars yet charge HST. a Canadian tax. I've also been concerned that due to the shrinking Canadian dollar this Jan I am paying $5 more per month on my plan. There should be a way to lock into the price we agreed to when we signed on. 

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Tourist
8 0 3

Yeah, I've been thinking about the taxes too.  I wonder how they work it:  on $10CAD the taxes are $1.50 CAD.  So at 1.13 exchange rate that would be $1.69.  A bit of an accounting headache!

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