Why We Built Shop

Four phones lay horizontally on a purple gradient background. Each phone screen displays a different view of the Shop app.

The short answer is we built Shop to help strengthen the relationship you have with your customers where they are today, on their phones. In this and future blog posts, we'll dive deeper to explain the strategy behind our first consumer-facing product. Here, we’ll answer the questions why we made Shop an app and how Shop works with (and for) your business. 

Why is Shop an app?

Take a look at the ScreenTime feature on your iPhone or Android device, and you might notice trends that have unfolded over the past five years. We spend more time in just a handful of apps than we do searching the web, and social networking and shopping apps are becoming the main drivers of commerce.

 This image contains three graphs. The first shows the average time spent in minutes per day in the US in mobile apps and how it has increased from around 100 minutes to over 150 minutes per day since 2015. The second graph shows the average number of apps used by customers and how it has decreased since 2016. The third graph shows the top app categories in the past 7 days with social media apps in the lead at just under 75%

Sources: Business of AppsHubspot, and MindSea

Shopify's metrics reflect this, too. Over the past four years, we've seen a 275% increase in traffic bypassing online stores and landing directly at checkout. Apps have become the leading paths to discovery and purchase. But using apps to drive traffic to your store or building one on your own is expensive. That's why we created the Shop app, a free channel that helps merchants secure high-value real estate on customers' phones. 

Imagine if your store was the 3rd most popular shopping app in the US. With Shop, it already is.

Shop wins this real estate because it acts as a personal shopping assistant for your customers. It streamlines and improves their cart to home journeys across all their favorite stores. What’s even more unique about Shop’s app experience is that its features aren't just convenient, they're meaningful. Shop Pay is a faster way to check out safely and it even offsets carbon emissions from deliveries by planting trees for free. Real-time order tracking offers both a live map view and push notifications, so customers are less likely to miss a delivery. These and other thoughtful touches have helped Shop earn its place on over 100M phones and app store leaderboards.

How Shop works with (and for) your business 

On top of helping merchants offer a better cart to home experience, Shop also drives new and repeat purchases sooner with effortless remarketing opportunities. Shop empowers merchants with customizable store profiles that Shop users can follow to find deals, new products, and recommendations in their Shops tab. And we’re already seeing that 9% of users on the Shops tab click to view merchant profiles or product recommendations in more detail.   

Driving targeted discovery and rediscovery is key for every merchant trying to grow their business. We know it can cost five times more to gain a new customer than to keep a current one. And (according to Marketing Metrics) the likelihood of converting sales is between 60-70% for existing customers but only 5-20% for new prospects. Shop levels the playing field for all merchants by increasing brand visibility and discovery in an app, without the stress of building one.

Want to maximize your brand experience in Shop?
Customize your store profile and choose products for in-app recommendations with the Shop channel.

The possibilities for Shop are endless

What if you could notify your customers about a new product launch or flash sale in an instant? From push notifications to targeted recommendations, the Shop channel opens doors for more valuable, timely, and exciting interactions with your customers. And we're just getting started. 

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