Nov 10, 2023
Shopify’s New Era of Checkout: What does the Checkout Extensibility mean for Shopify Plus merchants?
Historically, customizing Shopify checkout could only be achieved by editing code – the checkout.liquid theme file specifically (available only on Shopify Plus). This tended to be a complex, time-consuming process that sometimes resulted in a sub-par customer experience.
In 2022, Shopify announced the release of Checkout Extensibility which will be accessible to all its users, including Shopify Plus merchants alongside the impending depreciation of checkout.liquid for Shopify Plus users.
On 7 November 2023, Shopify released Checkout Extensibility to all Shopify Plus merchants for Thank You and Order Status pages. The feature will be released to all other Shopify merchants in 2024.
What is Checkout Extensibility?
Checkout extensibility is a suite of powerful platform features that make it easier to customize your checkout in a way that’s app-based, upgrade-safe, higher-converting, and integrated with Shop Pay, which means for the first time ever, express checkout can be customised.
With checkout extensibility, you can make code-free customizations to your checkout using apps and branding tools, or use our collection of components and APIs to build more bespoke checkout experiences.
Features included with checkout extensibility:
- Checkout Editor
A drag and drop interface to quickly and easily edit the look of your checkout (by adding your logo, changing the background color, updating the font etc.) and install checkout apps that add more functionality. This seamlessly integrates with Shop Pay.
- Branding API
Merchants can now utilize new branding tools to tailor their checkout experience.
With the branding API you can add a logo to your checkout header, change the background of your checkout form, change the background of your order summary and customize the font and colors of your checkout page.
- Checkout UI extensions
Customize checkout by inserting components at defined points in the checkout flow.
Either custom-made or installed from the official marketplace, Checkout Extensions offers a robust system that allows adapting checkout to merchants’ needs. Moreover, checkout extensions can adapt to style changes defined through Checkout Branding.
Some examples of extensions you can add with third-party apps are upsells, surveys, testimonials and social media links.
- Pixels manager
This is a new section in the Shopify admin which allows merchants to add and manage pixels that track customer events on multiple pages of your online store, such as the checkout and post-purchase pages.
If there isn’t an app pixel available that meets your requirements, then you can use custom pixels on your store to track customer events without having to modify your theme code.
- Components for custom apps
Build bespoke customizations by developing custom apps with Shopify Functions, checkout UI extensions, web pixel app extensions, and post-purchase extensions.
What does this mean for Shopify Plus users?
If you are a Shopify Plus merchant, you might be using checkout.liquid to customize your store checkout. Moving forward, Shopify will be investing in checkout extensibility as the sole way to customize Shopify Checkout.
Shops that currently use checkout.liquid need to upgrade to checkout extensibility before 13 August 2024, after which the feature will be deprecated and removed.
Upgrading requires replicating any required checkout.liquid customisations in Checkout Extensibility using the features and components available. This will likely require developer support, and potentially some custom app development.
Need to upgrade to Checkout extensibility from checkout.liquid? Check out this upgrade kit. You can also approach a dedicated eCommerce agency to help you migrate to checkout extensibility based on your bespoke checkout requirements.
What are the benefits of upgrading?
Upgrading to checkout extensibility comes with a laundry list of benefits including;
- Increased conversion and speed
Checkout extensibility is built on the latest Shopify platform technology, with 2X faster checkout interactions and page transitions that increase conversion over 1% on average.
Unlike using checkout.liquid, you never need to perform a checkout upgrade again, meaning you gain access to new checkout features as soon as they’re available.
- Shop Pay integration
Add any or all of your customizations to Shop Pay, creating a consistent experience for your customers while benefiting from Shop Pay’s 4X faster checkout experience.
- Improved security
Checkout extensibility is powered by a set of Shopify UI components and APIs that run in a sandboxed environment, allowing you to benefit from additional security.
- New checkout functionality
Gain access to new checkout features—like Shop Promise, pre-orders, and one-page checkout—when you upgrade to checkout extensibility.
Resources to help you upgrade:
AMP up your eCommerce store with checkout extensions.
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