What is Shopify?

What is Shopify?

What is Shopify and how does it work?

Shopify is a commerce platform that allows anyone to set up an online store and sell their products. Merchants can also sell their products in person with Shopify POS.

Shopify started over ten years ago when our founder Tobi wanted to sell snowboards with his company at that time called Snowdevil. He quickly realized it was incredibly challenging to sell snowboards online without an easy to use ecommerce platform. So he decided to create it himself, and Shopify was born.

Shopify is now the leading commerce platform designed for businesses of all sizes. Whether you sell online, on social media, in store, or out of the trunk of your car, Shopify has you covered. The first Shopify store was our own, and it’s been our mission to make commerce better for everyone ever since.

How does Shopify work?

Whether you’re a budding jewelry designer and want to start selling your products, or a musician and want to sell your latest mixtape, or if you have an established business and want to grow, Shopify can help you. Hundreds of thousands of entrepreneurs from over 175 countries trust Shopify to help sell their products.

Below you’ll find the different products or services that you can sell on Shopify. Even if you know what you’re selling already, it may give you some ideas for other services you could sell to grow your business.

Physical products: A physical product could be something you make by hand, something you have manufactured, or something you dropship to customers. Examples include jewelry, bath bombs, t-shirts, gift boxes, beef jerky, or pins to name a few.

Digital products: This could include ebooks, email templates, audio downloads, Lightroom presets for photographers, e-courses, or clothing patterns.

Services and consultations: Whether you’re an interior designer, dentist or a life coach, your customers can book online and sell online or in-person consultations.

Memberships: If you want to sell subscription boxes or if you’re a yoga studio owner you can use Shopify to sell your memberships and create member-only access to your content on your website.

Ticketed experiences: Experience-based businesses can range from travel and adventure to wine tastings and hands-on workshops. If you’re an artist or running a networking event, you can use Shopify to sell those tickets!

Classes and lessons: Customers can purchase, rent, and book lessons from you all through the online store.

Rentals: Rental businesses are technically service-based, even though a physical product is involved. So if you’d like to rent dresses or props, for example, you can use the Shopify platform.

The sky is truly the limit with what you can sell on Shopify. We recommend taking a few minutes to read our official terms of service to be certain that what you plan to sell is legal where you live. Or you can reach out to our customer support team to speak with someone directly.

So now that you’ve learned about what Shopify is and how it works, it’s time to get set up to start selling!


Ready to create your online store? Start your free 14-day trial of Shopify—no credit card required.

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