Shopify recently started suspending stores for selling products which are in high demand due to COVID-19 like masks, hand sanitizers, etc. Which I think was a very bad move.
Although I commend them for taking steps against stores selling these products at very high gauged prices but the move of outright suspending the stores was not properly executed as many other store which are not selling these items are also affected.
This action did not solve any problem but has increased problems and frustration for people who completely rely on Shopify for their livelihood.This move has blocked the livelihood for those people especially at such times of crisis.
They could had taken care of this situation by this way.
1) Send warning to unpublish the flagged items withing 48 - 72 hours but letting other unflagged products to sell normally.
2) Ask to upload evidence of the flagged products that they are not related to those items related to COVID-19.
2) Then if any store wants to sell masks and other products they should provide some kind of application to list these items to sell on store with their recommended price.
This move by Shopify was so bad.
I suggest everyone to comment or send message to Shopify on their social channels.
Already started searching for Shopify Alternatives.
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I just checked the AUP page because this is what was mentioned in the email sent by Shopify "Your store, (Store Name) has been flagged for listing face masks, hand sanitizer or other high demand items related to the coronavirus pandemic at excessive prices. Shopify considers price gouging to be a violation of its Acceptable Use Policy (AUP) subject to account termination."
And I found that all those items are not even listed on the page nor is there any single word mentioning "COVID-19" or "Price gouging".
If the above mentioned policy is not even mentioned in the AUP page on the official website then how can they even suspend the account?
Same here! I sell hundreds on non covid related products!! Orders I cannot now fulfil as my site is down!
NOTE: Every customer of mine either got their product or if there was a problem, immediate refund! I am a very clean store with good customer relations and customer service. Any masks (or anything else) I sold, customers received or are receiving.
This is completely UNFAIR!
I have been hysterical all morning! Absolute panic!!!
By the way: The face masks I sold were not unfairly priced.
ALSO: I sell beauty products including face masks which I think has cause further issues with the algorithm.
I just looked at the AUP myself, absolutely nothing mentioned about COVID or price gauging.
Why couldn't they warn us anyhow?? I would have unpublished anything they were unhappy with! The terrible thing is that I sell hundreds of NON covid products ...I operate a very clean store, I refund where applicable and my customers always get what they ordered.
I am puzzled as to why they don't set a price ceiling if they are so concerned! Give me a RRP and I'll abide by it. I have masks in stock which I paid a lot of money for and am happy to abide by a RRP for goodness sake. But don't shut me down, I have a mortgage to pay!!!
Yes indeed price gouging is even not mentioned in their "Acceptable Use Policy" which I printed today.
And no way to contact customer support via chat as usual because they suspended our account.
We didn't even have a chance to understand the issue beforehand and take appropriate action to solve it.
Very disappointed by the action taken without any prior notification.
One of our Indian stores is also suspended by Shopify due to this issue, we have listed these merchandise as an affiliate of Amazon India without price information and do not sell them directly to our customers. Yes, I agree Shopify's action is a kneejerk reaction due to some recent press reports in North America without considering sellers and interests of seller's customers. Hope they will review the stores quickly and restore the stores soon.