Unleash Potential: How Selling Subscriptions on Shopify 2023

Last Updated | June 29, 2023

Table of Contents

An Overview: Selling Subscriptions on Shopify 

Shopify is a versatile platform that can help businesses of all sizes sell their products and services. One of the most powerful features of Shopify is its ability to handle subscriptions and recurring payments. In this blog post, we will discuss how to use Shopify to sell subscriptions and recurring products.

Step 1: Choose a subscription app

To sell subscriptions and recurring products on Shopify, you need to choose a subscription app that integrates with the platform. Some of the popular subscription apps on Shopify include ReCharge, Bold Subscriptions, and PayWhirl. Each app has its own unique features and pricing plans, so it’s important to choose the one that suits your business needs.

Step 2: Create your subscription products

Once you’ve chosen a subscription app, you can start creating your subscription products.


  • From your Shopify admin, click Products.
  • Click the product that you want to manage the subscription of.
  • Select whether to sell the product as a subscription-only:
    • To sell the product as a subscription only, check Sell product as a subscription only.
    • To sell the product as a one-time purchase as well as a subscription, uncheck Sell product as a subscription only.

This involves setting up your product pricing, billing frequency, and other details related to your subscription offering. You can also add custom fields to capture additional information from your subscribers.

Step 3: Add the subscription product to your Shopify store

After you’ve created your subscription products, you need to add them to your Shopify store. You can do this by creating a new product listing and selecting the subscription product type. This will allow you to add all the details related to your subscription product, including pricing, billing frequency, and other relevant information.

Step 4: Customize your subscription checkout experience

To provide a seamless checkout experience for your subscribers, you can customize your subscription checkout page. This involves adding your branding and other design elements to make the checkout process consistent with your brand. You can also add custom fields to capture additional information from your subscribers.

Step 5: Promote your subscription offering

To drive subscriptions to your Shopify store, you need to promote your subscription offering. This involves creating targeted marketing campaigns and promotions to attract potential subscribers. You can also use email marketing to engage with your subscribers and provide them with personalized offers.

Step 6: Manage your subscriptions

Once you start selling subscriptions on Shopify, you need to manage your subscribers and their recurring payments. Your subscription app should provide you with tools to track your subscribers, manage their billing details, and process payments. You can also use Shopify’s built-in order management system to fulfill orders and manage customer support requests.

Shopify Subscription Success: A Step-by-Step Guide to Selling More

Here is a simplified step-by-step guide in table format for increasing success with your Shopify subscriptions.

Step Details
1. Understand Your Target Audience: The first step is to identify your potential customers. Learn about their habits, needs, and problems they need solving.

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2. Choose the Right Products to Sell: Based on your understanding of your target audience, pick products that will appeal to them and meet their needs.

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3. Pick the Right Subscription Model: Different products and audiences might be better suited for different subscription models, such as replenishment (for consumable products), curation (for the discovery of new items), or access (for offering premium features or benefits).

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4. Set Up Your Shopify Store: Choose a theme, customize it to fit your brand, upload your products, and enable Shopify’s subscription functionality.

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5. Create a Pricing Strategy: Decide on the price of your subscriptions. It can be a flat monthly fee or tiered pricing depending on the level of service.

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6. Market Your Subscriptions: Use social media like Facebook or Instagram, email marketing, SEO, and other digital marketing strategies to promote your subscriptions.

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7. Provide Excellent Customer Service: Be responsive to customer inquiries, provide clear communication, and handle any issues promptly and professionally.

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8. Analyze and Optimize: Use Shopify’s analytics to track the performance of your subscriptions. Make adjustments as needed based on your findings.

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9. Engage Subscribers: Keep your subscribers engaged with regular updates, exclusive offers, and personalized communication.
10. Offer Incentives for Customer Retention: Retaining subscribers can be more cost-effective than acquiring new ones. Offer incentives like discounts or exclusive products to keep subscribers onboard.
11. Implement a Referral Program: Happy customers are more likely to refer their friends. Offer rewards for referrals to motivate your subscribers to spread the word.
12. Continuously Improve: Regularly revisit your subscription model, pricing, marketing strategies, and customer service approach to identify areas for improvement.

This table is a high-level overview. Each of these steps can be further broken down into more detailed actions and considerations, so make sure to do thorough research and planning.

Conclusion – Selling Subscriptions on Shopify:

In conclusion, selling subscriptions and recurring products on Shopify is a great way to generate recurring revenue for your business. By choosing the right subscription app, creating your subscription products, customizing your checkout experience, and promoting your offering, you can build a successful subscription business on Shopify. With the right tools and strategies in place, you can grow your subscriber base and increase your recurring revenue over time.

FAQs – Selling Subscriptions on Shopify:

 What types of subscriptions can I sell on Shopify?

Shopify supports a wide range of subscription types. You can sell physical products on a recurring schedule, digital subscriptions like memberships or software services, subscription boxes, and more. Various apps like ReCharge, Bold Subscriptions, or PayWhirl Recurring Payments can help manage these subscriptions.

 How do I set up a subscription service on my Shopify store?

To set up a subscription service on Shopify, you typically need to integrate with a third-party app that offers subscription services. Shopify’s App Store has many options available, such as ReCharge, Bold Subscriptions, or PayWhirl. Once you’ve chosen an app, you’ll install it, set up your subscription options, and add these to your product listings.

 How can I manage my recurring orders and subscriptions on Shopify?

Managing recurring orders and subscriptions on Shopify is done through the subscription service app you have installed. These apps provide interfaces for tracking and managing your subscribers, their orders, and their payment methods. Features and specific steps vary depending on the app you choose.

 Can I offer trial periods for my subscriptions on Shopify?

Yes, many subscription apps on Shopify allow you to offer trial periods to your customers. You can set the duration of the trial period and what the customer will be charged after the trial ends. The exact process will depend on the subscription app you’re using.

 What happens if a customer wants to cancel their subscription?

Customers’ subscription cancellations are typically handled within the subscription app you are using. Most apps will allow the customer to cancel their subscription themselves from their account page on your Shopify store. Once canceled, the app should automatically stop charging the customer and halt the delivery of products or services.

Source: https://ecommerce.folio3.com/blog/selling-subscriptions-on-shopify/

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