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Suggestions for migrating development store to existing live store ?

New Member
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I have a live site (LS) and a development site (DS).

The LS is on a paid shopify account. The DS is on a partner account.


On the DS I've implemented a new theme. 

I need to make changes to the products (adding metadata) which the theme will make use of. I also need to add new products, and update the product images.


My concern is that once I make changes to the product data, updating the LS with the changes on the DS will no longer be a simple matter of copying the customised theme file across. I will also need to migrate the product data and images from the DS to the LS.


I would like to know what a recommended workflow is for this situation.


Would I be better off copying the theme files from DS to LS, BEFORE making any changes to the products and product images; and, then making the changes to the products on the LS only?

What do other experts suggest?


Replies 3 (3)
Shopify Partner
80 8 23


That's a tricky situation you have there. I think the best option would be to do as you mentioned; copy the files from DS to LS and then update the products and images etc.

One other option I can think of is to set up the DS and when it's ready activate it as the main site?


Joshua Sarros - Freelance Web Developer from Melbourne, Australia
Shopify Staff
Shopify Staff
1109 106 330


Hi, @InspiredNZ!


Julie here from Shopify Support.


Are you creating this development store for a client, or will you be the account owner? Typically, development stores are used by Shopify Partners who build turnkey stores on behalf of clients, so everything you have added, from theme features to products, will be transferred. 


If you want change a development store to a live plan but still be the account owner, then I suggest creating a staff account for yourself on the development store, and transferring ownership of the development store to that account by following the steps listed here. When transferring ownership of the development store, you'll notice that this process doesn't involve having to export and import any theme files, images, meta data, or products, making it really easy to have a seamless transfer. 


I hope this helps clear things up, but if I've misunderstood your question, please let me know! 

Julie | Social Care @ Shopify 
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New Member
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@Julie - but that doesn't account for things like:

  • Customer Accounts
  • Order History
  • Gift Cards
  • etc.

Is there a solution available to can cleanly merge a Development site into a Live site? That is still the 1 thing that Shopify struggles with, and it's a significant point of frustration for Shopify Developers and their workflow.