As a leading e-commerce platform, Shopify is constantly innovating and introducing new features to help merchants grow their businesses. And the Winter 2023 Editions update is no exception, with hundreds of new features and improvements that promise to make it easier for merchants to manage their online stores and sell more products. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at some of the most exciting updates from Shopify Editions Winter 2023. From improved checkout experiences to new product bundle apps, we've sifted through them all, highlighting the ones that have piqued our interest and that we believe will have the most significant impact on merchants.
Checkout changes are a crucial aspect of Shopify’s latest Editions, and the new one-page checkout is a major overhaul inspired by Shop Pay’s high conversion rates. With fewer fields to fill out and pages to go through, this optimized experience is expected to reduce friction and increase conversion rates – a top priority for merchants.
However, this comes with a cost - checkout.liquid customizations are now deprecated and will be replaced entirely by Checkout UI extensions, public & apps, and Shopify Functions. This means if you have any customizations on your checkout, including look and feel customizations, you’ll need to migrate this before August 13th, 2024. Nevertheless, the new Checkout UI extensions and apps are expected to provide a better experience for merchants and their customers, so a worthwhile change that we can support you with.
Metafields vs. Metaobjects
Metafields are additional custom fields that can be added to any Shopify component, such as products, collections, and more, to store and display extra information that might not be natively available in the platform. For example, think of information such as product ingredients, care instructions, related products, or other specific data on a product page.
In contrast, Metaobjects are a brand new feature, launched with Shopify Editions, that allows merchants to create and manage custom content within their store. Shopify's new Metaobjects aim to simplify content management for merchants. They can be used to extend Shopify with multi-field content like size guides, product highlights, lookbooks, FAQs, and much more.
By using Metaobjects, you can conveniently generate and modify your content in a centralized place without worrying about updating your store's design or layout, all while streamlining your content management workflow.
With Shopify preferred CMS partner Sanity, Shopify has been able to connect custom content models directly into Metaobjects. So, if you're a Sanity user, you can now sync products and collection data to and from Sanity to power your Liquid storefront, creating performant stores with rich content.
Shopify has launched a new native product bundle app, Shopify Product Bundles, allowing merchants to easily create bundles of products and variants – free as part of your Shopify plan subscription. While there are lots of product bundle apps out there, Shopify's native version will provide a seamless integration streamlined for merchants who want to keep features like this under Shopify and use third parties for bigger elements like subscriptions and reviews. Additionally, Shopify Functions can be used by third parties to develop their own bundle apps as part of the update.
Shopify has recently expanded its global infrastructure to provide users with a faster and more efficient experience no matter where your customers are shopping from. With 270 points of presence worldwide and continuous deployment of additional locations, Shopify efficiently routes traffic and renders sites as close to their location as possible. As a result, merchants are already seeing their sites respond twice as fast, significantly improving their user experience.
Check out this article for more updates on global features like Markets Pro.
Shopify launched their B2B offering in 2022, which, at the time, was a great feature for Shopify merchants selling B2B, but it lacked some essential features. Until Winter Editions, when Shopify made some well-needed improvements.
One of the new features of Shopify B2B is the ability to create unique quantity rules for products and variants, which allow merchants to set minimum and maximum order quantities for different customers. This feature could increase the Average Order Value and reduce shipping costs by selling in bulk, making it more cost-effective for merchants to serve their B2B customers. Additionally, you can create B2B catalogs to customize the buying experience for your customers by including all products or only a specific subset of your products, setting different prices per catalog. Plus, the latest reordering feature simplifies the process, allowing customers to place repeat orders quickly. Finally, B2B invitation emails make it easier for merchants to invite their customers to join their wholesale program.
To read more about Shopify B2B and get detailed information on the updates, check out our article. And discover how to create D2C experiences for your B2B customers on Shopify.
With "Sync and Sell on YouTube" you can now display your products through live streams and on-demand videos. This feature is a game-changer – enabling merchants to sell their products directly to viewers while they watch a video. Of course, we’ve seen this in some video streaming apps before, but having this integration directly into YouTube will be extremely useful for merchants, particularly with the rise of social commerce as a direct means of purchasing. With this feature, brands like Gymshark, with their vast community, can leverage it to offer live workouts and sell related products simultaneously.
Now, brands can increase engagement and sales by reaching customers where they spend their time - on YouTube. For more on Social Commerce, check out our article covering this e-commerce trend that’s only increasing in popularity.
With Winter Editions came POS Go, Shopify’s latest mobile POS device, and other exciting new POS updates for merchants selling online and in-person. First, let's start with POS Go – an all-in-one mobile hardware that enables you to process payments on the go without needing a separate device, everything can be completed using one device (currently US-only availability).
Additional POS updates:
We’re all well-versed in AI-generated content, from Microsoft’s Chat GPT to Copy AI. Now, Shopify has introduced their own AI-generated storefront content, automatically generating product descriptions based on selected keywords and features. The feature, called Shopify Magic, is designed to help merchants save time by creating product descriptions more quickly and efficiently. Additionally, Shopify Flow has recently been updated to allow merchants to use OpenAI for automatic content generation. With the help of AI-generated storefront content, merchants can focus on other aspects of their business, knowing that their product descriptions are created efficiently and effectively.
Shopify has recently released Hydrogen 2, the latest version of its web development framework built with Remix, a popular web framework that Shopify acquired in October of last year. Hydrogen 2 is designed to help developers build performant, dynamic, and unique storefronts faster and more efficiently. With Hydrogen 2, developers can take advantage of the latest web development technologies to create high-quality storefronts that meet the unique needs of their clients. By incorporating Remix into its development framework, Shopify is providing developers with a powerful tool that can help them create beautiful and functional storefronts optimized for speed and performance. For more on Shopify’s Hydrogen, check out our article.
Next up, Shopify has increased API rate limits for its users. Unthrottled API calls are now available for the newly launched Shopify Commerce Components, allowing users to access data easily without being restricted by rate limits. Read more on Commerce Components here.
There are over 8000+ apps available to merchants on the Shopify app store, many of which offer excellent solutions. However, some aren’t up to scratch. To address this issue, Shopify has launched the ‘Built for Shopify program,’ which incentivizes app developers to improve the quality and standards of their apps for merchants. As well as providing apps that do meet Shopify standards, greater visibility, and increased trust with a seal of approval badge to add to listings. Badges are now offered when apps meet Shopify’s safety, performance, and usefulness standards – great news for merchants who rely on third-party apps to enhance their store's functionality and features!
So there you have it, just some of the most exciting and impactful updates from the many Shopify Editions Winter 2023 launches. Of course, if you want to delve deeper into all the Shopify Editions updates, you can check everything out here. Plus, if you want to talk through any of the key updates we’ve mentioned above or any of the Editions updates, reach out to our experienced Shopify team — we can get you set up with any of the latest features and updates from Shopify.