The Cost of Running an Online Store at Shopify

Shopify Staff (Retired)
Shopify Staff (Retired)
1784 193 555

Welcome to Shopify! There are a few things to check out before creating your first online store. In this post, we’ll walk you through the key points. Now, let’s dive in!

Pricing Plans:

Shopify has different plans available depending on your business needs. Here is the plan and pricing list you can check out.

If you’re a startup or want to test the water with your new idea, the Basic plan will cover your needs. That said, it comes with the highest credit card processing fees and also a 2% additional fee if you were to use any third-party payment gateways.

When you’re a booming business that is on the verge of scaling up, the Professional plan is the one that works well. It provides additional reports and lower credit card fees compared to that of the basic plan.

Last but not least, a large and more established business may be the perfect candidate for the Advanced Shopify plan. It offers the most comprehensive reports and the real-time carrier shipping package for free, which is an additional $20.00 per month on top of the lower tier plans.

During the COVID-19 period, there are a variety of features temporarily free of charge. Check out to see which ones that can help your business.


One thing to note is when starting with Shopify you are given a free URL. We always recommend using a custom domain which is important for your brand but it is also needed to submit your sitemap to Google for them to crawl your store and include your store in the search results.

Custom domains purchased through Shopify start at $11 USD per year and that includes the all-new Shopify email hosting. If you are using a third party domain then you can use G Suite (prices start from $5 USD a month) or Zoho has some free plans and paid plans (from $20 USD a month).


You can choose from a wide range of themes for your online store - there are free and paid themes. If you choose to use a paid theme, they can cost between $140 and $180. Shopify's theme store is very easy to browse since you can filter all the templates using a wide range of criteria, including price, industry, layout type, and visual effects (i.e. video backgrounds, etc).

One thing that's important to note about paid themes is that if you need any support with installing or configuring them, you may end up dealing with a third party; Shopify only supports themes that Shopify has developed.


If the functionality included in your chosen Shopify plan isn't quite enough, you can enhance it by adding apps to your store. Shopify's app store contains hundreds of apps (both free and paid). You can use Shopify apps to integrate your store neatly with well-known productivity/business apps like Xero, Zendesk, and Salesforce. Some apps are developed by a third party so always check the user reviews before committing to one and be aware that these apps are supported by the developers of the apps as opposed to Shopify’s support team.


Aside from the platform costs of running your business, you should also take into account the cost of inventory. There are a lot of different business models out there. A lot of merchants setting up online stores opt to dropship or print on demand. Other merchants who are selling a product they make or procure themselves need to think about how much their inventory is going to cost them. Where will you be sourcing your inventory? You will have to factor the costs of postage from your supplier to your stock storage location and the way that you will work with your supplier can make a difference in this. It’s cheaper per unit, for example, to buy stock in bulk, but you might have to hold certain minimum amounts. If you’re buying from overseas and not your home country, there are exchange rate calculations to take into account as well, and for bulk purchases of stock.


Online marketing is something that every eCommerce business needs to budget for. The use of marketing platforms is a must for any online business. Balancing your marketing budget is something that you need to take into account.

One thing to keep in mind here is that you can spend less on a campaign and get no results, or, alternatively, you could spend more on your advertising and get a good return. Essentially, the results you get are reflected by the effort that is put in.

Email marketing has shown to give the biggest return on investment (ROI) and you don’t even need to spend that much additional cash on it as your store is already doing half the work with the checkout, popups, and newsletter signups collecting the email addresses in the first place. The main possible costs to consider would be the app/platform you use for email marketing and possibly, copywriting. A definitive guide to email marketing can be found here.

Google, Facebook, and Instagram are, of course, massive when it comes to online marketing. You will need to think about the audience that you want to reach and how much you are willing to spend. Different audiences use different platforms. Here is a breakdown of the Cost Per Click on each of these advertising platforms. Google Search ads average CPC was $1.16 per click in 2019. The average CPC for Google Display was $0.46 per click in 2019. Facebook’s average CPC is $1.86 per click. Instagram ad clicks will cost you anywhere from 20 cents to $2 per click and as mentioned earlier. email marketing has the best return on investment.

In conclusion, the cost of running a business varies from business to business as no two businesses are exactly the same. Going through what has been discussed should have you on the right track to getting the budget for your business in order.

If you have any questions at all please feel free to contact our Support Team. We are always happy to hear from you!

Bo | Retired Staff Member