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In this post we show you how to start the right Shopify free trial — there are two to choose from — plus how to get an extended one that lasts for 30 days. You’ll also find links to a selection of key blog posts and videos about Shopify that cover key aspects of this popular ecommerce platform.
The two different types of Shopify trials that are available
Something that’s not widely known about Shopify is that are actually two different free trials available — and it’s really important to pick the one that best meets your requirements.
Standard Shopify free trial
The standard trial gives you three days’ access to Shopify, during which you can try out all the platform’s key features and start building your store.
Now, this isn’t widely publicized, but there is also an option available to use Shopify for 1 month for $1, in practice letting you try out the platform for around 30 days for virtually no fee.
Shopify promotes this offer on certain partner websites, including Style Factory — if you’d like to avail of it, you can use this special link to do so.
The Shopify dropshipping trial (starter kit)
If you plan to use Shopify for dropshipping, the best trial for this purpose is its ‘dropship business starter kit’, which you can access here.
The dropshipping starter kit lets you avail of the regular Shopify three-day trial and the $1 per month offer, but also gives you access to a wide range of additional dropshipping resources that are designed to help you kickstart a dropshipping business in the most effective way possible.
Shopify free trial FAQ
How do I sign up for a Shopify free trial?
You can sign up for a Shopify free trial on the Shopify website.
How long does a Shopify free trial last?
A Shopify free trial lasts 3 days. However, if you sign up for a plan at the end of this period, you get the option to use Shopify for 1 month for just $1 per month.
Do I need to submit my credit card details to start my trial?
No, you don’t need to submit your credit card details to start your trial. You will need to submit your email address however, and consent to receive marketing information from Shopify.
Note: to avail of the $1 per month offer (in effect an extended trial, you will need to enter credit card details).
Can I extend a Shopify free trial?
So long as you have a good reason for requesting an extension to your trial, Shopify will often grant it. You will need to contact Shopify’s support team with your store URL (yourstorename.myshopify.com), stating the reason why you want to extend your trial.
Can I sell products during my Shopify free trial?
Can I dropship during a Shopify free trial?
While you can prepare your business for dropshipping and install the relevant apps to do so during a free trial, you will need to be on a paid-for Shopify plan to actually dropship.
Does the Shopify trial let me use point of sale features?
You can use the trial to set up certain aspects of Shopify’s point-of-sale system, but you can’t use it to actually start accepting in-person payments via Shopify POS system. Once you have a paid plan however, you get Shopify POS Lite bundled with your plan at no extra cost — this lets you sell in person in one location at a time.
How do I get a 90 day free trial on Shopify?
Unfortunately, the Shopify 90 day free trial is no longer available, but the company has replaced it with a 30 day trial that can be accessed for $1 per month. You can avail of this offer here.
Why have I heard about a 90 day trial, then?
To help merchants during the COVID-19 pandemic, Shopify temporarily made a 90-day free trial of the platform available. When this free trial was withdrawn, the company introduced a ‘3 months for $1 per month’ offer, where Shopify was made available to merchants for around 90 days for just $1. Unfortunately both these 90 day trials are no longer available, but Shopify is still offering users an extended version of its trial for a small fee — the platform can be used for one month at a cost of $1.
What happens if I subscribe to a Shopify paid plan while I’m still on a free trial?
If you take out a paid Shopify subscription whilst you’re on a free trial, you won’t lose any of your trial days — charges won’t commence until your trial expires.
How do I cancel my Shopify trial?
If you don’t subscribe to a paid-for Shopify plan during your trial, then your Shopify account will simply be frozen at the end of the free trial. You won’t be charged anything.
Can I cancel Shopify after my free trial?
Yes. You can cancel your plan at any point — with any outstanding balance (transaction fees, shipping label charges, app subscriptions etc.) being charged at the point of cancellation. You can also avail of the option to pause payments for your Shopify store.
Does Shopify automatically charge me after the free trial?
No. If you don’t choose a pricing plan during your free trial, your account will be frozen at the end of it — you won’t be charged for anything. However, your store won’t work again until you subscribe to a plan.
Can I install apps from the Shopify app store whilst on a free trial?
Yes, it’s perfectly possible to install apps from the Shopify app store during the free trial period.
How do I accept payment using Shopify?
You can accept credit card payments with Shopify via its built-in payment gateway, Shopify Payments, or alternatively use a third-party payment gateway (over 100 are available). If you go down the latter route however, transaction fees will apply.
Are Shopify themes free?
At time of writing, there are 12 free Shopify themes and 166 paid-for ones available. The paid templates cost between $140 and $400 (this is a one-off payment).
How much does Shopify cost?
Shopify fees vary from $5 to $399 per month, depending on the plan you choose (Shopify Starter, Basic Shopify, Shopify or Advanced Shopify). An enterprise plan, ‘Shopify Plus,’ is also available — prices for this are negotiable, but it typically costs around $2000 per month. You can learn more about these fees and the differences between plans in our guide to Shopify pricing or our article on determining the true costs of a Shopify website.
Are there any discounts available for Shopify?
The main discount that’s available for Shopify right now is its $1 per month offer — this lasts for one month and you can access it here.
Additionally, if you pay for your Shopify trial on an annual basis, you can reduce your subscription fees by between 25%. To avail of this reduction in fees, sign up for a Shopify trial using this link, then when your trial ends, choose to pay annually when upgrading.
Finally, if you’re a nonprofit organization, you can avail of two discounted Shopify plans: a ‘Shopify NPO Lite’ subscription and a ‘Shopify NPO Full’ one. These are priced at $29 and $99 per month respectively, and are similar to the ‘Basic’ and ‘Shopify’ plans (but come with enhancements like lower transaction and credit card fees, and unlimited staff accounts). You may need to contact Shopify directly to learn more about these plans, however, and an application process is involved.
How do I contact Shopify?
To contact Shopify, you need to log in to your Shopify account and then visit the support page on the company’s website. Once you’ve done that, you’ll need to pick the topic that you need support with. You’ll see a page with resources about that topic — and if you scroll down to the bottom of it, you’ll see a ‘Get support’ section containing options for requesting a callback, starting a live chat, or emailing the company.
Do other ecommerce platforms offer free trials?
Most of Shopify’s competitors offer free trials. You can learn more about alternative online store platforms in the ecommerce reviews section of the Style Factory website, or you can check out our resource on the Squarespace free trial here.
Does Shopify have a 14-day trial?
Shopify’s trial length was originally 14 days, but it has been reduced to just 3. However, once the 3-day trial is over, you can use the platform for 1 month at very little cost ($1 per month) — this effectively gives you an extended trial period.
Why is the Shopify trial only 3 days in length?
Shopify’s trial length and structure is definitely unusual by comparison to those of its competitors. It’s likely that the company has settled on the 3 day limit plus $1 per month offer based on looking at conversion rates and establishing that this proposition generates the most Shopify subscriptions. In fairness to the company, however, the $1 per month for a month offer does provide merchants with a lot of value too and effectively lets them use the platform for a reasonable amout of time for virtually no cost.
What are the main alternatives to Shopify?
Other Style Factory resources about Shopify
Style Factory is an official Shopify partner.
We produce a lot of strictly impartial content to help ecommerce businesses decide if Shopify is the right platform for them. We also provide resources to support existing Shopify users.
Below you’ll find links to our some of our key Shopify articles.
Shopify reviews and comparisons
- Shopify review — an in-depth, impartial look at the platform that outlines all its pros and cons.
- Shopify vs Amazon — the differences between using Shopify (a hosted solution) and Amazon (a huge online marketplace) to sell goods online.
- Shopify vs BigCommerce — we put two of the most similarly featured online store builders head-to-head.
- Shopify vs Big Cartel — how Shopify compares to one of the cheapest ecommerce solutions available.
- Shopify vs eBay — the differences between using Shopify and a platform that has been traditionally associated with online auctions and product listings.
- Shopify vs Etsy — the differences between using Shopify and ‘arts’-focused ecommerce platform Etsy (including Etsy’s Pattern product).
- Shopify vs Shopify Plus — how the ‘regular’ version of Shopify compares to the enterprise-grade one.
- Shopify vs Squarespace — how Shopify stacks up against another leading online store builder, Squarespace.
- Shopify vs Square — the differences between using Shopify and another ecommerce platform with a large set of POS features for in-person selling.
- Shopify POS vs Square — a deep dive into the key differences between the point-of-sale systems offered by Shopify and Square.
- Shopify vs Wix — how Shopify compares to one of the world’s most popular website builders, Wix.
- Shopify vs WooCommerce — how Shopify compares to the leading ecommerce plugin for WordPress.
- Shopify vs WordPress YouTube comparison — a video guide to the differences between Shopify and WordPress.
- Shopify Pricing Plan Comparison (YouTube) — a video guide to choosing the best Shopify plan.
Shopify how-to guides and product information
- ‘What is Shopify?’ guide — a simple overview of the platform an how it works.
- How to dropship with Shopify — our step-by-step guide to setting up a successful Shopify dropshipping store.
- Shopify print on demand guide — a step-by-step guide on how to get a successful Shopify POD business off the ground.
- Shopify POS Pro vs Lite (YouTube) — video guide to the key differences between Shopify’s two point-of-sale plans.
- Shopify side hustles — 25 ideas on how to generate revenue from a Shopify-powered business.
- How to start your own Shopify store — our step-by-step tutorial on creating a Shopify store from scratch.
- How to use Printful with Shopify — a guide to connecting one of the web’s leading print on demand apps to Shopify.
- How to rename your Shopify store — how to change the your Shopify store name in just a few clicks.
- How to sell music on a Shopify store — top tips on how to sell digital and physical music formats using Shopify.
- How to sell eBooks with Shopify — a step-by-step guide on how to sell digital books using the platform.
- How to sell digital products with Shopify — a step-by-step guide on how to sell downloadable products on a Shopify store.
- Shopify statistics — a detailed set of statistics about the Shopify platform’s user base, market share, stock value and more.
- Shopify SEO tutorial — a guide to optimizing a Shopify store for search engines.
- Shopify A-Z glossary — definitions of over 75 important Shopify terms and definitions.
General ecommerce resources
- What is dropshipping? — an overview of dropshipping and how to do it right.
- A guide to the pros and cons of dropshipping — all the advantages and disadvantages of this popular ecommerce model.
- What is a point of sale system? — our video guide to point of sale and how to choose a POS system that meets your business’ needs.
- Ecommerce glossary — simple explanations of all the key ecommerce terms you’ll encounter when running an online store.
- Ecommerce platforms — a buyer’s guide — a guide to the key things to look for (or avoid!) when choosing an online store builder.
- Ecommerce statistics — all the essential facts and figures about the ecommerce space.
- How to make an online store — a step-by-step guide to creating a brand new ecommerce site.
Video resources about Shopify
Below you’ll find some of our video reviews and comparisons involving Shopify. For all our latest Shopify videos and tips on running an online business, please subscribe to our YouTube channel.