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Shopify Editions | Winter ’24 – a Flatline summary

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6 minute read // E-commerce

Hey there Flatline Fam! It’s finally out – the new Shopify Editions Winter ’24!

Yesterday, Shopify released their new Editions! It’s all all about strengthening the foundational aspects of commerce. The central theme is enhancing and solidifying the basic framework upon which businesses build and operate on the Shopify platform. This edition is particularly geared towards merchants who handle a large number of products & product variations, with an emphasis on simplifying processes for merchants to facilitate higher revenue generation through improved product display and management. And of course we are here to guide you through some very interesting new features!

Expanding product variations

Shopify has made a groundbreaking change by increasing the product variant limit from 100 to 2000.

This is especially beneficial for merchants dealing in products with numerous sizes, colours, and materials.

Now it’s easy to sell more variations and give customers more options to meet their needs.

This feature, currently in developer preview, will be rolled out throughout 2024.

Enhanced display and merchandising

The new Shopify Combined Listings app, available early for Shopify Plus users, revolutionises how products with multiple options are showcased. Each option gets its own description, aiding in specific targeting, yet all are displayed on a single product page for clarity.

Before the introduction of this app, Shopify merchants looking to display all variations of a product in one listing typically had to list each variant as a separate product. They would then undertake custom work to combine these listings into a single PDP, a process often requiring significant time, effort, and resources.

Consider an example: you own an apparel store, and your top-selling shorts are available in 8 colours. If your product listing only features one image per color variant, customers interested in a specific color like ice blue won’t see the shorts from various angles in that color, potentially leading to lost sales opportunities.

https://www.shopify.com/enterprise/combined-listings

The Shopify Combined Listings app simplifies and streamlines this process, enabling merchants to efficiently create combined listings for their varied products without the extra workload.

Simplified product creation & classification

Creating product data is now more tailored. Shopify has improved the way products are created and classified, reducing the need for excessive metafields. This simplification aids merchants in filling only necessary content. The introduction of standardised product taxonomy, which automatically detects product categories and colours, will further streamline organisation and enhance the search and filtering experience on storefronts.

Here’s a quick preview for the Shopify Standard Product Taxonomy that is now available for early access.

Theme block enhancements for developers

Building a brand-specific storefront is now getting easier with improved editing and customisation options. Reusable theme blocks, which can now be nested up to 8 layers, offer unprecedented flexibility and efficiency for marketers.

Semantic Search – AI

This new AI-powered feature on Shopify Plus, enhances the storefront search experience by going beyond basic keyword matching. It adeptly understands the underlying intent of a customer’s search, enabling them to use natural language and phrases.

This advancement leads to more accurate and relevant search results, tailored to the specific needs and expressions of the customers.

Shopify subscriptions

This fine app is now in full release.

With Shopify Subscriptions, merchants can set up different subscription plans, manage billing cycles, and offer flexible subscription options to their customers. This includes the ability to customise subscription models, like one-time purchases combined with recurring deliveries, or entirely subscription-based products. It’s designed to integrate seamlessly with the existing Shopify platform, providing a user-friendly experience for both merchants and customers.

B2B Sales enhancements

Shopify introduces B2B sales rep permissions, allowing sales reps to manage customer relationships more effectively. This includes a new permissions API for developers to create bespoke B2B apps, and future updates will enable merchandisers to manage specific locations or products.

Optimised fulfillable inventory

Inventory management gets a boost with the ability to assign stock to specific markets, reducing the complexity of order routing. Buyers only see market specific and realtime accurate views of in-stock inventory in their region, showing a product out of stock when its not available in that specific market.

https://www.youtube.com/@shopify

Checkout extensibility

Customise the entire checkout journey with new app-based customisations. Over 90 new apps are available for enhancing checkout, including upsells and loyalty programs. (Extend your checkout here)

With 14 new APIs and UI components your checkout process with Shopify Plus gets taken to a whole new level – but see for yourself:

http://youtube.com/@shopify(opens in a new tab)

Additionally, checkout and storefront page load times have been dramatically reduced the past year, what just speaks for Shopify itself!

Web performance dashboard

Gain valuable insights into user experiences with the Web performance dashboard. This tool uses industry-standard Core Web Vitals to provide real-time data on store speed and the impact of various apps on loading times. So that you don’t have to miss any conversion due to a change in loading speed.

Streamlined returns & exchanges

Usually returning items immediately means potential loss. But Shopify now offers a more efficient way to handle returns, focusing on exchanges. This feature allows merchants to manage exchanges seamlessly, calculating refunds, taxes, and inventory adjustments automatically. Learn more about creating returns with exchange items here.

Enhanced customer accounts

https://www.youtube.com/@shopify

Customer Account Extensibility (in developer preview) now allows for the addition of apps and features to customer accounts through a simple drag-and-drop interface, enhancing post-purchase experiences and customer retention.

Targeting new customers

Shopify has also responded to the challenges of privacy regulations and rising ad costs with smarter targeting algorithms and Shopify audiences for Shopify Plus.

Find more customers and lower CAC by up to 50% on top ad platforms with custom audience lists and insights

Merchants can create custom audiences across platforms, and with Shop Campaigns, they pay only for converting customers by setting a CPA target and letting Shopify do the rest.

Shopify finance in the US

Shopify continues its support for merchant growth with Shopify Capital, now offering Shopify Term Loans and a Shopify Line of Credit for more flexible funding options:

https://www.youtube.com/@shopify

Push for digital commerce with AI

Building on the success of Shopify Magic and Sidekick, Shopify is integrating AI-enabled features for more professional image editing and background editing in the admin panel. We mean, look at this:

Shopify Magic

This is a continuous process and will be continued over the whole year, Shopify will keep you updated!

To sum up

So this was our first insight of the new Shopify Winter Editions ’24. I hope the groundbase is understood now and you are already a bit more in the topic. Over the next weeks we will provide you with closer explanations on the new features and our specific thoughts on them. We are very excited and amazed on what Shopify is creating and how it is not helping our clients but also us! Soo, keep your ears and eyes open for the Flatline Socials and we’ll see each others!!

We at Flatline Agency, official Shopify Plus Partners, are here to help you take your business to the next step, including custom development, design, and marketing. If you are interested, please feel free to contact us.

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