Can I Pause My Shopify Subscription? A Complete Guide

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Understanding Your Options: Pausing vs. Deactivating Your Shopify Store
  3. The Step-by-Step Guide to Pausing or Deactivating Your Shopify Store
  4. Keeping Customers Informed
  5. Frequently Asked Questions

In the dynamic world of e-commerce, flexibility is key. Whether you're a seasonal business, undergoing a rebrand, or simply need a break, the ability to adapt your operational expenditures to your current needs can make all the difference. This brings us to a critical question many Shopify store owners find themselves asking: "Can I pause my Shopify subscription?"


Imagine you're in the throes of peak season. Sales are booming, customers are happy, and your Shopify store is bustling with activity. But as the season winds down, you find yourself needing to take a step back—maybe to reassess your strategy, revamp your store, or simply breathe during a slow period. Or perhaps, the unprecedented has happened, and you need to pause operations. The question then arises: is it possible to pause your Shopify subscription without permanently closing your store?

The ability to pause a Shopify subscription is not just a matter of convenience; for many, it's a crucial business strategy. In this comprehensive guide, we'll explore what pausing a Shopify subscription entails, the options available to you, and how to navigate the process smoothly. So, let's dive deep into the world of Shopify and discover how to effectively manage your subscription in times of change.

Understanding Your Options: Pausing vs. Deactivating Your Shopify Store

Shopify provides store owners with two main options when considering a temporary or permanent break: pausing or deactivating the store. Each serves a different purpose and suits various scenarios. Let's unravel these options to see which might be the best fit for your current needs.

Pausing Your Store: The "Pause and Build" Plan

If you're looking to take a brief hiatus from selling but wish to continue working on your store's backend, Shopify's "Pause and Build" plan might be the perfect solution. For a reduced fee of $9 USD per month, this plan allows you access to your Shopify admin to edit products and tweak your site without the active checkout functionality. This means customers can browse your products but won't be able to make purchases. This option is ideal for seasonal businesses or those in the process of rebranding or restocking.

The "Pause and Build" plan is accessible to stores that are past their free trial period and are on a paid plan. It's crucial to note that once you decide to unpause your store, you'll need to choose a new plan, as your former plan is no longer valid.

Deactivating Your Store

Should you decide that a longer break is necessary, or perhaps you're considering closing your store, deactivation is the route Shopify offers. Deactivating your store involves canceling your subscription and essentially putting your store to sleep—your Shopify subscription is halted, and access to the admin area is revoked. Should you wish to return, reactivating your store would entail selecting a new plan and payment method.

Considerations for Both Options

Before making a decision, it's important to consider the implications of each option carefully. Pausing your store allows you to work on it at a reduced cost, but your store's visibility remains unaffected—customers can still see your products but cannot purchase them. On the other hand, deactivating your store removes it from public view entirely, saving you from paying the monthly subscription but also from making any backend progress.

The Step-by-Step Guide to Pausing or Deactivating Your Shopify Store

How to Pause Your Shopify Store:

  1. Navigate to your Shopify admin area.
  2. Click on Settings, then Plan.
  3. Select Pause and Build.
  4. Follow the prompts to switch to the reduced fee plan.

How to Deactivate Your Shopify Store:

  1. In your Shopify admin, go to Settings > Plan.
  2. Click on Deactivate Store.
  3. Follow the steps to cancel your subscription.

Re-opening Your Store

When you're ready to bring your store back to life, log into Shopify, go to Settings > Plan, and choose a new subscription plan that suits your business's current needs. You'll have the flexibility to select a different plan from the one you had before pausing or deactivating your store.

Keeping Customers Informed

Communication is key during transitions. Keep your customers in the loop by updating your website with a message explaining the pause, sending out emails to your subscriber list, and utilizing your social media platforms. This transparency helps maintain customer trust and keeps them engaged until your store is back in full swing.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I pause my Shopify store?
Yes, you can pause your Shopify store by opting for the "Pause and Build" plan, allowing you to work on your store at a reduced monthly fee but disabling the checkout process.

Do I need to pay a Shopify fee while my store is paused?
Yes, there's a reduced fee associated with the "Pause and Build" plan, currently set at $9 USD per month.

Can I pause my Shopify store and not pay?
Pausing your store without any fee isn't an option. However, you can deactivate your store completely to stop incurring charges, with the option to reactivate it later.

What happens when my Shopify store is on pause?
Your store remains accessible to the public, but the checkout process is disabled. You can still work on your store's backend during the pause.

Is my Shopify store hidden from the public if it's paused?
No, your store remains visible to the public, but purchases cannot be made. If you wish to hide your store, consider password-protecting it.

In conclusion, Shopify offers a versatile range of options for store owners looking to pause or deactivate their subscriptions. Whether you're in need of a temporary break or contemplating a longer hiatus, understanding and leveraging these options effectively can help you manage your store in alignment with your life's rhythms and business cycles. Remember, flexibility and informed decision-making are key components of successful e-commerce management.