Can You Sell Subscriptions On Shopify? [Guide]

November 15th, 2023 by Felix Cheruiyot

Can you sell subscriptions on Shopify

Adding subscription options to your e-commerce website is bang on trend. But how easy is it on Shopify? Can you sell subscriptions on Shopify? Read to learn how.

Adding subscription options to your Shopify store helps to shore up flatlining sales, build a loyal customer base, and establish a predictable revenue stream. They don’t set up as subscription-first businesses.

But how easy is adding the subscription option on Shopify? Can you sell subscriptions on Shopify? If so, how do you do it?

Let’s find out.

Does Shopify support subscriptions?

Can you sell subscriptions on Shopify

Shopify does not natively support subscriptions, but that does not mean you cannot sell subscriptions on the e-commerce platform.

You can sell subscriptions on Shopify using the many subscription apps available on the Shopify app store. These apps automate adding and managing subscription options on your e-commerce website.

Using these subscription apps, you can set up recurring payments, create subscription plans, offer discounts for longer subscriptions, and track your subscription sales.

Of course, you will have to create your subscription product first. Then, using the subscription app you have chosen, you can set up your subscription plans. As you will probably prefer to do, you can offer different plans with different prices and terms.

When everything is all set up, you will be ready to sell subscriptions on your Shopify store. When a customer purchases a subscription, they will be automatically billed on a recurring basis.

How to sell subscriptions on Shopify.

More e-commerce startups choose to set up their businesses on Shopify than other platforms. Among the reasons it is preferred, Shopify allows anyone to easily set up their website, add products, and start selling quickly.

Shopify has an extensive library of supported apps that you can use to customise and add functionalities it does not natively support. This includes email marketing and payment collection for businesses in certain geographical regions and across multiple sales channels, including subscriptions.

The e-commerce platform has a user-friendly interface and robust features that support growing businesses, making it ideal for subscription businesses.

To start selling subscriptions on Shopify, all you need to do is:

1. Sign up for Shopify

Shopify combines an e-commerce content management system with an unmetered website hosting service that allows you to host and run a fully functional e-commerce business for a low monthly subscription.

You can take advantage of the platform’s 14-day free trial for new users to test the platform’s features and gauge if it can support the kind of e-commerce business you envisage running.

The free trial does not require you to enter your debit card details, meaning you will not be charged anything upfront or before you have decided Shopify is the e-commerce platform for you.

2. Create your website.

How to create a website on Shopify

Once you are happy with what Shopify offers and are ready to set up your website, Shopify will guide you through a series of steps until your website is set up and ready to launch.

If you are setting up as a subscription-first business, you should proceed to the Shopify App Store to choose a subscription app.

3. Add a subscription app.

Subscription apps on Shopify

There are many apps available to Shopify store owners that you can use to add subscription options to your website, but some have geographical restrictions while others only integrate with a few select payment gateways.

Remember that adding subscription options to your e-commerce store only opens an extra sales channel. You will still need a way to collect those recurring payments from your customers, which means your subscription software must integrate with the payment gateway you use.

Here are some tips for selling subscriptions on Shopify:


Choose a subscription app that easily integrates with your payment gateway.

No matter how compelling your subscription offers are, you will struggle to run a profitable business if your customers struggle to make payments. So, you will need a tried and tested payment gateway that supports both your region and the subscription app you are using.

A payment gateway allows you to collect customer payments on your e-commerce website. The right payment gateway to use is one that supports multiple payment methods and easily integrates with the e-commerce platform you are using.

Ideally, you want to have as few apps as possible running your Shopify store. Too many apps can slow down your website and increase the risk of downtime.

One way to prevent downtime caused by running too many apps is to choose a payment gateway offering subscription payments and automatic billing as a premium feature. The best such payment gateway for Shopify shop owners in Kenya is Intasend.

Our automated billing and subscription payments software is built on top of our payment gateway, which many Shopify stores in Kenya use to collect customer payments. We support Visa, Mastercard, Bitcoin, and M-Pesa payments, which cover the main methods your customers in Kenya and abroad prefer to pay with.

Automate billing and establish a predictable revenue stream with Intasend’s subscription software.

Whether you are a big or small business you sell physical products or services, implementing the subscription model comes with many benefits. Not least is the reduced administrative overhead from automated billing and the predictable revenue, improved customer trust, and increased customer lifetime value that recurring revenue produces.

With Intasend, not only is it easy to collect payments from customers on your Shopify store, but you can easily integrate our automatic billing and subscription payments software to start offering subscription options on your e-commerce website.

Intasend combines developer-friendly code and no-code integration tools with a user-friendly interface and multiple convenient payment methods for a subscription payments system built for African businesses. The result is a scalable solution with a card payment success rate exceeding 99.99%.

Request a demo and learn how to set up automatic billing and subscription payments on your Shopify store here. Then, sign up here to get started collecting recurring payments from your customers.

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