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Shopify is making a push to sign up large retailers in 2023

Commerce Components by Shopify allows enterprise brands to customize their software stack.

Shopify logo on a table
(Photo via Shopify)

Shopify has long been known for helping new and emerging brands get off to a fast start in ecommerce. To kick off 2023, the software company is planting a flag in the enterprise market.

The news: Shopify on Tuesday launched Commerce Components by Shopify (CCS), a product offering that allows larger, more established brands and retailers to access parts of its ecommerce infrastructure. With the new package, Shopify is aiming to provide a modular approach for enterprise retailers that typically require more customized systems to run their digital commerce operations. “Enterprise retailers can take the components they need, and leave what they don’t, and developers are free to build with any front-end framework they choose,” Shopify writes.

What's in it? As part of CCS, Shopify said it is rolling out new back-office management that is designed specifically for enterprise retailers. At launch, the product offerings include:

  • Checkout: Shopify’s checkout will be available to enterprise brands. This will also open up access to customers who use Shop Pay, which is Shopify’s checkout service for storing payment info and tracking orders.
  • Flexible APIs, which now have no rate limits. These allows brands and retailers to integrate existing services with Shopify components.
  • Infrastructure: Shopify says it has over 275 network edge points globally, which enables speed.
  • Ecosystem: Shopify has a dedicated account team with solutions architects, specialized support and a network of seasoned agency partners and system integrators like Deloitte, EY, and KPMG.
  • Find a full list of the 30+ components here.

Key quote: “Commerce Components by Shopify opens our infrastructure so enterprise retailers don’t have to waste time, engineering power, and money building critical foundations Shopify has already perfected, and instead frees them up to customize, differentiate, and scale,” said Harley Finkelstein, president of Shopify, in a statement.

Who is using it? Mattel, for one. The Barbie and Hot Wheels maker is bringing its entire portfolio of toy brands to Shopify. The companies first worked together on a creator platform called Mattel Creations, and are now expanding their work together.

Shopify goes bigger: Tuesday’s launch is a product-level outgrowth of rhetoric that has been emerging from Shopify in recent months. With existing clients like Coty, Spanx and Staples, Finkelstein recently told analysts that growth of enterprise clients using the existing offering Shopify Plus outpaced that of Shopify’s overall GMV in the third quarter. Coupled with recently-launched hardware that powers in-person retail, the strategy reflects an aggressive roadmap for Shopify that sets up the Ottawa, Canada-based company to serve markets beyond the digitally-native, direct-to-consumer brands and small businesses with which it has long been associated. This comes as DTC brands are facing challenges following post-lockdown shifts in shopper behavior, Apple’s App Tracking Transparency changes and a pullback of once-plentiful venture capital. Many in retail are also bracing for a difficult year as a result of inflation and interest rates. Landing larger clients can deliver sizable and stable recurring revenue from brands with established footholds in the market. That’s a good way to ride out the storm.

Let’s be clear: Shopify is not alone here. There is already a big, existing market for enterprise ecommerce, and more platforms are gearing up to make a splash in it. In recent weeks, BigCommerce also shared plans to shift its entire sales and marketing infrastructure toward growing its enterprise account. Both companies conducted layoffs in 2022 as they shifted course.

Trends to watch:

Composable commerce. Remember the term. This launch also points to a trend in ecommerce software: Brands and retailers, especially on the larger side, are increasingly opting to build commerce technology stacks by combining elements from a number of different providers. They want to create their own systems that meet their needs, and they want the different parts to be able to easily work together. This points to an environment where choice is prized, and the best components get selected. With CCS, Shopify is signaling that it believes it can stand out with checkout. In turn, partnerships with consulting firms like Deloitte, EY, and KPMG show it is tuning for how these solutions are sold in the market.

Land and expand: The progression with Mattel shows how enterprise sales presents the opportunity to take a "land and expand" approach, as Finkelstein put it to analysts. Start with one part of a brand's work, delight them and there may be a chance to bring in the whole account.

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