I have run or helped run a Shopify store now for over 7 years. For the most part - they have been a great place to grow, however I recently fell victim to them holding our payouts due to reasons that are still not apparent to me. This is currently ongoing and I am receiving no help from them.
I was initially looking into options regarding Shopify Capital - this was Wednesday, July 13th, 2022. I was told by a personal rep, Alex, that this process should be fairly quick after requesting the money we were pre-approved for - maybe a day or two. I left for a trip on that Friday, a little surprised to still be waiting on the request, but expecting to hear back by Monday. On Monday I returned to three notices on my Admin page regarding payouts being held up and a necessary review check on my Reselling Validity with the brands that I work with.
I promptly reached out to Alex/Shopify members regarding how to sort this out quickly and followed all prompts they sent me for necessary documentation. On Tuesday, July 19th, I received a further notice regarding a form to be completed and returned to them. This was done immediately. I subsequently cancelled the request for Shopify Capital, in full, the following Wednesday.
It is now Tuesday, July 26th, and I still have not heard one word from Shopify regarding the status of this hold up. We are talking amounts up to the tune of $60K. I have not been paid a cent on my orders for 13 days now (and I have certainly paid my monthly fees to them in that time). I have reached out every single day, calling, chat, Alex, etc... to absolutely no avail. There is no way to reach the legal team, or banking team by phone - AT ALL. No, not even if your business is now in trouble due to Shopify's lack of efficiency and communication. Solutions such as "Paypal is still setup" or "try looking into a new payment gateway" are slaps in the face at this point. I have employees to pay, vendors to pay, and CC bills to cover at the end of the month. Any legit payment gateway requires a significant background check and review before you can even start using them.
What started as an opportunity presented to me by Shopify has turned into a complete disaster. It feels like a scam, and even though I understand the terms and Shopify's power to do this for up to 120 days, I simply can't wrap my head around this. Mainly because there is no communication about what we need to sort out/provide. No idea what the actual problem is other than that initial message. So now we are up against hefty payments that will be much harder to make. We will struggle if this goes on any longer - but if it takes more than a month, there is no doubt we will need to shut down.
Really a bummer considering the history we have with Shopify - I was even considering Shopify Plus to bring on a new store but I can almost guarantee my money will be going to Big Commerce/another platform for that now. Each day this goes on will only be a case to move all of my business over eventually.
A few takeaways:
- Shopify Capital is in no way "pre-approved", even to the very figurative sense of the word... If you do investigate this option, be wary of a potential hold being put on the account.
- Shopify's communication may be great for minor issues regarding running a store - but if it gets serious, you should expect to hear nothing until they deem it resolved. I am more than happy to comply if something is actually wrong or needs attention on my end but even that is unclear due to the lack of communication.
- I have read other stories about people needing to shut down their stores due to these types of issues - and Shopify should know (being such a big platform for retail) what it takes to run an accrual-based business. They seem to have not a slight care in the world for your needs - we have done over 3 million with them in a year before so you can gauge your own store's success and what type of support you will get based on that.
- It appears they are waiting on a financial team working with Stripe - their native payment gateway company - to finish reviews like this. At the very least, have a backup payment plan ready to go if something like this happens. This is likely my fault although it was never something I knew would be necessary.
Thank you for sharing your story. I am unfortunately not surprised at all. I hope it has worked out for you in the end. I appreciate learning this and will not be drawn into the promise of anything moving smoothly with Shopify.
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