Sell internationally on Shopify - OneOnic Solutions

Expanding Your Reach:
Selling Internationally on
Shopify and Shopify Plus

As businesses increasingly embrace global markets on Shopify, it's essential to adapt and cater to international customers. By venturing into the global e-commerce arena, merchants unlock access to a vast customer base, driving potential transactions and revenue growth. Recent studies reveal that 35% of Shopify traffic originates from international visitors, underscoring the significance of tapping into the global market. Moreover, a staggering 92% of these visitors prefer browsing and purchasing in their local currency. Notably, 33% of Shopify shoppers are inclined to abandon their purchase if pricing is displayed solely in US dollars.

Although catering to diverse customer needs across the globe may seem daunting, Shopify offers robust tools to simplify international selling. In this comprehensive guide, we'll delve into the essentials of internationalization and provide insights on selling internationally with Shopify and Shopify Plus.

Identifying international markets to sell to on Shopify

Expanding your Shopify store globally begins with identifying the most suitable geographic markets for your business focus. While a broad approach may seem appealing initially, each country and market possesses unique browsing and purchasing behaviors. A strategic starting point involves analyzing data within your Shopify store. By examining the sessions by location report, you can pinpoint any existing international visitors and narrow down potential target markets for further investigation. Even if your store currently lacks international traffic, it's still valuable to identify select markets with potential demand for your products or services. When selling internationally on Shopify, prioritize markets that are geographically proximate or share the same native language and cultural similarities. Understanding your customers' preferences and behaviors is paramount for successful online selling endeavors.

Setting Up Multi-Currency and International Payments on Shopify

To sell globally on Shopify, there are two primary approaches: utilizing a single store with multi-currency, language, shipping, and duties settings, or creating separate Shopify stores for each market and using geolocation technology to direct customers to the appropriate store. The latter option is commonly associated with Shopify Plus, which provides additional features and capabilities.

Once you've determined your target international markets, it's essential to configure your store to enable customers to pay in their local currency. Previously, displaying prices in different currencies at checkout would revert to the original store currency. However, with Shopify Payments, you can offer true multi-currency functionality on both Shopify and Shopify Plus platforms. This feature significantly enhances the customer experience and reduces cart abandonment rates by up to 33%, as many international customers prefer to make purchases in their local currency.

By adjusting your Shopify Payment settings to accommodate new geographical regions, customers from these areas will see prices automatically converted into their local currency using real-time foreign exchange rates. Shopify's Geolocation app further enhances this by identifying customers' locations worldwide and displaying prices in their local currency based on intelligent IP address tracking. However, integrating currency selectors may require some development support to ensure seamless functionality.

With Shopify Payments, you can customize product prices for each currency, eliminating the need for currency conversion and preventing customers from encountering unexpected pricing discrepancies. This approach allows you to account for additional costs specific to each region, providing a more transparent and seamless shopping experience for international customers. For further insights into Shopify's international pricing capabilities, refer to our comprehensive guide on the subject.

International Taxes and Duties on Shopify

Expanding your Shopify store internationally comes with the challenge of understanding and adhering to various tax laws specific to different countries and markets. In Europe, product prices typically include relevant taxes, while in North America, prices are often displayed exclusive of taxes, with taxes calculated and added during checkout based on the buyer's shipping destination. Incorrect tax calculations can lead to shipping delays, penalties, and diminished profit margins, underscoring the importance of accurate tax management when selling internationally.

Fortunately, Shopify simplifies this process by automatically adjusting product pricing to include or exclude necessary taxes based on the customer's location. This automated approach streamlines tax calculations for merchants and helps ensure compliance with international tax regulations. For added peace of mind and comprehensive tax compliance, merchants can integrate fully integrated tax compliance solutions like Avalara Avatax. These solutions provide advanced tax calculation capabilities and ensure that your business remains compliant with tax rules regardless of your audience's location.

Shipping internationally with Shopify

To start shipping products worldwide on Shopify, you'll need to set up shipping zones tailored to your new target markets. Navigate to the Shipping settings within the Shopify platform and create shipping zones specific to the regions you intend to target. When configuring international shipping rates, consider your shipping strategy carefully. Factors such as product size and weight can significantly impact shipping costs, especially for international destinations. You may need to adjust packaging to ensure it's suitable for longer distances, potentially altering the size and weight of parcels compared to domestic shipments.

Additionally, conduct thorough research on the international markets you'll be shipping to. Be aware of any region-specific rules or requirements, and ensure compliance with regulations, especially if your products fall under categories like "dangerous goods."

Once you've accounted for these variables, select an international shipping and fulfillment app available within the Shopify platform, such as ShipStation. Ensure that the chosen app offers comprehensive coverage for the regions you plan to ship to. Many Shopify shipping apps include features for managing returns, but if not, consider integrating a specialized app like Clicksit. These apps streamline the returns process, providing easy returns labels and automation to enhance the overall customer experience.

International domains on Shopify

Setting up international domains for different countries can significantly enhance the localized website experience for your customers. By assigning international domains to specific regions, you create a sense of trust and familiarity, as customers perceive your website as tailored to their local market. This localization can lead to higher conversion rates, as customers are more likely to engage and make purchases when they feel comfortable and confident.

One key benefit of international domains is the ability to display prices in the local currency of each market. For instance, if a customer from Europe visits your website with a domain targeting Germany, prices will automatically be shown in Euros (EUR), providing a seamless and convenient shopping experience.

Moreover, Shopify automatically optimizes the SEO aspect of international domains by implementing hreflang tags. These tags signal to search engines which international domain corresponds to a specific geographic area, ensuring that users see the correct domain, pricing, and language in their search results. This boosts visibility and accessibility, driving more organic traffic to your localized websites and ultimately increasing your global reach and sales potential.

Translating languages

Language translation plays a crucial role in successfully selling internationally on Shopify. Studies indicate that nearly 80% of international buyers strongly prefer browsing ecommerce stores in their native language. Therefore, providing a properly translated store can significantly enhance the shopping experience and increase sales from international customers.

With the Shopify platform, you can easily set up multiple languages for your store, allowing you to cater to customers from diverse linguistic backgrounds without the need to create separate stores for each region. Utilizing language translation apps is a practical solution to translate your store and its content efficiently.

Among the available options, Weglot stands out as a highly recommended choice. Renowned for its advanced features and seamless integration, Weglot simplifies the translation process and ensures that your store effectively communicates with customers in their preferred language. By implementing robust language translation, you can create a more inclusive and accessible online shopping environment, ultimately driving greater engagement and sales from international markets.

Global marketing strategy for internationalisation on Shopify

With your international store set up and ready to launch, congratulations are in order! Expanding into these global markets promises to be a lucrative venture. To accelerate growth, consider implementing a targeted marketing campaign aimed at attracting international traffic and generating demand for your products. Utilizing region-specific advertising campaigns can effectively target specific markets and direct them to the appropriate localized version of your global website, ensuring a tailored shopping experience for each region. This strategic approach to marketing will help drive awareness, engagement, and ultimately sales, maximizing the potential of your international expansion efforts on Shopify.

Shopify Markets

Shopify Markets, introduced by Shopify in late 2021, enhances duties management, enables customized pricing for each territory, facilitates language translation, and provides currency control—all within a single store. To discover more about Shopify Markets, visit the link here.

Selling Internationally with Shopify Plus

Shopify Plus is designed for enterprise-level scalability, offering robust tools to optimize global sales on the platform. While benefiting from the fantastic features available on standard Shopify for global selling—such as currency conversion, language translation, and customizable pricing and shipping settings—Shopify Plus takes it a step further. With the ability to create up to 9 expansion stores, Shopify Plus allows you to duplicate your store effortlessly, typically used for targeting different international markets. Although this approach requires additional planning and effort, it provides unparalleled control over each region you aim to reach, ensuring an exceptional ecommerce experience for your customers.

Multi-store approach to selling internationally with Shopify

Expanding your Shopify store internationally can be accomplished through either a single store covering multiple regions or by establishing separate Shopify stores for each targeted country or region. There are several factors to consider when opting for the multi-store approach in international sales with Shopify.

Enhanced Control: Operating individual Shopify stores for each country or region grants complete control over every aspect of the setup. This allows for offering unique product ranges tailored to specific markets and customizing content and campaigns to resonate with local audiences.

Tailored Marketing: With separate stores, you can tailor your marketing efforts, imagery, and messaging to align with the preferences and behaviors of each international market. This flexibility enables a more targeted approach to engage customers effectively.

No Additional Charges: Shopify Plus allows for the creation of up to 9 additional stores at no extra cost, facilitating expansion into multiple international markets without incurring additional expenses.

Challenges to multi-store approach selling

Inventory Management: Managing inventory across multiple stores can be complex and may necessitate the use of third-party inventory management tools to streamline the process. Increased Workload: Maintaining multiple stores entails a higher workload for your internal team, as each store requires regular updates and management.

Logistics Considerations: Logistics, including shipping and fulfillment, need to be carefully coordinated across different regions to ensure seamless operations and customer satisfaction.

Edge Cases: Consideration must be given to scenarios where customers may want to purchase for someone in another region. Determining whether to allow currency or store changes to accommodate such situations is essential.

Finally, you need to consider the edge-case scenarios of selling internationally on Shopify using the multi-store approach - consider what happens if customers want to purchase for a customer in another region they are in, will you allow them to change their currency or store.

When considering the multi-store approach you may wish to consider Shopify Plus as the overall monthly cost could be lower than pay singularly for multiple single stores with Shopify - especially when investing in Shopify Advanced as this is around $299 per month.


In conclusion, while selling internationally with Shopify can be straightforward, it requires careful consideration of various factors to ensure a seamless ecommerce experience for your customers. From managing multiple stores to implementing currency conversion and language translation, there are key aspects to address to maximize success.

We have a proven track record of assisting merchants like Club L London in implementing geolocation-driven multi-store approaches for international expansion. If you're ready to discuss launching your own international selling strategy with Shopify or Shopify Plus, don't hesitate to reach out to us today. We're here to help you navigate the complexities and unlock the full potential of selling globally on Shopify.

Why choose Shopify Plus for international selling?

While Shopify lays a solid foundation for online sales, Shopify Plus unlocks a whole new level of control for ambitious international businesses. Here's what makes it a game-changer:

Effortless Global Expansion: Shopify Plus scales effortlessly to handle surges in traffic across all your regions, ensuring a smooth customer experience for your global audience.

Automated Global Operations: Free up your teams! Shopify Flow automates repetitive tasks like VIP management and inventory control across multiple stores, saving you valuable time and resources.

Synchronized Global Rollouts: Launch new themes and localized updates seamlessly with Shopify Launchpad. Schedule them perfectly for each market's time zone for a consistent brand experience that caters to regional preferences.

Advanced Checkout Customization: Boost conversions in each market with powerful checkout scripts. Offer targeted promotions and discounts that resonate with your international customers.

Shopify Plus empowers you to manage your international presence with greater efficiency, deliver superior customer experiences, and ultimately drive global sales.

Work with an expert Shopify migration agency who are partnered with world-leading Shopify apps.

As a Shopify Plus agency, we excel not only in top-notch Shopify development but also in harnessing the power of technology partnerships to provide unparalleled capabilities and features. Through strategic alliances with world-leading Shopify Plus partners, we curate the finest technology from the Shopify Plus app store, ensuring that our clients benefit from cutting-edge functionality. Our expertise lies in seamlessly integrating third-party apps and crafting bespoke features through custom development, delivering ecommerce solutions tailored to your business needs throughout the Shopify migration journey.

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