At the recent Unite 2018, Shopify announced quite a few updates for its users. With over 600,000 merchants now using the Shopify platform around the world, the company is continually looking for ways to make the merchant experience better, easier to use and provide much more flexibility for merchants to offer more to customers.
Updates to Inventory
One of the focuses at the event was on helping merchants to better manage inventory across all their locations. The focus for the updates to inventory from Shopify was on merchants who have multiple inventory locations. It’s for those that need to know where their merchandise is stocked or if it’s in the right location at the right time. There are three tiers of updates to the Shopify platform for inventory and this includes inventory item, inventory level and location.
- Inventory Item: An inventory item represents the physical goods available to be shipped to a customer. It holds essential information about the physical goods, including its SKU and whether its inventory is tracked.
- Inventory level: An inventory level represents the available quantity of an inventory item at a specific location. Each inventory level belongs to one inventory item and has one location. For every location where an inventory item is available, there’s an inventory level that represents the inventory item’s quantity at that location.
- Location: A location represents a geographical location where your stores, pop-up stores, headquarters, and warehouses exist. You can use the Location resource to track sales, manage inventory, and configure the tax rates to apply at checkout.
The benefit of the new update is that merchants will be able to specify where orders are to be fulfilled and where they will be restocked. Being able to check inventory from different store locations will be much better for merchants with multiple store locations as they’ll be able to check item quantities from directly inside their Shopify POS.
As a result of this update, however, and the changes to the inventory API, it meant a lot of changes to the product and variant, fulfilment and refund API’s. Shopify says that from July 1, 2018, apps will no longer be able to use the product or variant API to adjust inventories. This means that after July 1, 2018, all apps should use the Inventory API instead. Dropshipping apps, 3PL and print on demand apps will all be moved to inventory as well.
Updates to discounts
Shopify merchants already have the ability to offer discounts to customers for their various sales promotions undertakings. But those options have now been widened with “Buy One, Get One Discount” offers, which will are now able to be created inside Shopify. This update to the discount API will be available in May 2018.
Shopify Flow Updates
Shopify has Shopify Flow for time-consuming and repetitive tasks. It allows for the automation of a variety of tasks such as a customer service request, sales responses, wholesale enquiries, payment responses and much more. The automation of these tasks is to do with the responses you would typically send via e-mail to the various customers. This automation will help you as you grow and struggle to keep up with these things.
Shopify is launching a new “connectors for Shopify Flow” update because in the world of e-commerce it takes many apps to keep things going. Connectors for Shopify Flow is meant to be a solution for that with app extensions allowing your workflow to connect to different apps from third-party partners. LoyaltyLion is an example of an app that will benefit from the Shopify Flow update and users will be able to use it as part of their automation process and their strategy for communicating with customers. Charlie Casey says “Shopify Flow aligns perfectly with our goal to free merchants from processes, so they can concentrate on innovation and delighting shoppers. By applying a unique combination of triggers, conditions, and actions developed for Shopify Flow, merchants can experiment with thousands of innovative ways of using LoyaltyLion and our third-party partners to maximize customer engagement and retention”.
Multi-currency payments are coming to Shopify payments. This will be available for Shopify plus members and will allow those merchants to sell products using multiple currencies based on the local currency of their visitor.
Updates to the Shopify POS
There were some great updates announced for the Shopify POS which will be released throughout the year. These are aimed at improving the merchant and the customer experience when using the POS. The changes to the POS include:
- The ability to accept ‘tap’ payments from devices that use Apple Pay or Google pay. Also, the ability to use credit cards with a chip for tap and pay at the POS will also be available.
- Shopify POS will now allow you to accept online returns in store. Customers won’t have to worry about expensive return shipping fees. It allows the customer to come into the store and return an item they bought online which saves both parties time and money on shipping.
- There will also be a customer view coming for POS later this year. Shopify retailers will be able to set up a second screen near their POS on their checkout counter using a tablet. They can then use it to show customers the prices of their products and even receipt options. It helps to provide transparency in the payment process and gives the customer confidence in the checkout process because they can see what’s happening.
All the updates to Shopify will be rolled out throughout the year. Many of them will be of a great benefit to Shopify merchants. But if you need help with your Shopify store, you can always ask WhichAddOn about it. We can help you with inventory and any of the changes mentioned in the Shopify update coming in July for that area. We can also help you with your Shopify POS or with how to manage your multiple locations using Shopify or other add-ons.
Book a free scope call with us here and let us help you make your Shopify store great!