Can You Pause Shopify? A Comprehensive Guide to Taking a Break

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. When to Consider Pausing Your Store
  3. The Shopify "Pause and Build" Plan
  4. Reactivating Your Store
  5. Communicating During the Pause
  6. FAQs

In the bustling world of online retail, the ability to adapt and take strategic breaks can be as crucial as pushing sales. Imagine the flexibility to pause your online store while restructuring, rebranding, or simply taking a breather without entirely losing your digital footprint. This notion might seem far-fetched, but it's a reality for Shopify store owners. This blog post delves into the mechanics of pausing a Shopify store, exploring when it's beneficial, the different options available, and how to effectively communicate with your audience during this period.


Have you ever felt overwhelmed by the constant demands of running your online store? Or perhaps you've contemplated taking a step back to refine your business strategy, update your product line, or just recharge. The idea of pausing your store temporarily instead of a complete shutdown offers an intriguing solution. It's like pressing the "pause" button on your store's operations without eroding the brand presence you've worked hard to establish. This guide unveils how you can leverage Shopify's flexible options to take that well-deserved break or strategic timeout, ensuring your return is stronger than ever.

In the following sections, we'll dissect the "Pause and Build" plan, outline when pausing makes sense, and provide tips on maintaining customer engagement even when sales are on hold. Whether you're pondering a short hiatus or a more extended period of restructuring, understand that this isn't merely about taking a break—it's about strategically positioning your store for future success.

When to Consider Pausing Your Store

A Seasonal Business Model

If your store thrives during specific seasons, pausing in the off-season can be a wise move. This approach allows you to minimize operational costs while planning and preparing for the peak season.

Business Restructuring or Rebranding

Significant changes such as rebranding or restructuring your business model require undivided attention and time. Pausing your store opens up the bandwidth needed for these crucial updates.

Personal Breaks

Running an e-commerce venture is demanding. Sometimes, stepping away to recharge or deal with personal matters is not just beneficial but necessary for the long-term health of both the entrepreneur and the business.

The Shopify "Pause and Build" Plan

Shopify understands the dynamic nature of e-commerce. The "Pause and Build" plan is tailor-made for store owners who aren't ready to sell yet but wish to work on their store. Priced at $9 USD per month, it disables the checkout process while keeping your store online. You can access your admin panel, edit products, and tweak your store's design without incurring the full cost of a typical plan.

What Works and What Doesn't

While on this plan, customers can browse your products, but the ability to make purchases is turned off. Also off-limits are Shopify's POS system, discounts, and third-party apps and integrations. It's crucial to review and adjust these features accordingly to ensure a smooth transition for your store during the pause.

Transparency with Customers

Keep your customers informed about the pause. Update your site's messaging, use social media, and email marketing to communicate why you're pausing and when they can expect you to resume full operations. Transparency builds trust and keeps your customer base engaged.

Reactivating Your Store

When you're ready to jump back in, reactivating your store is straightforward. Log into your Shopify admin, choose a new plan, and you're set to resume selling. Remember, the "Pause and Build" plan gives you the flexibility to reassess which Shopify plan best suits your current business needs.

Communicating During the Pause

Effective communication is key to maintaining customer relationships even when your store is on a break. Besides updating your website, engage with your audience through regular newsletters and active social media presence. Share behind-the-scenes glimpses of your rebranding efforts or teasers of new products to keep the excitement building.

Preparing Your Store for a Pause

Adjust your store’s layout to reflect the paused status. Consider removing or hiding price tags and "Add to Cart" buttons to avoid confusing your visitors. If you opt for complete privacy, activating password protection for your store is a sensible move.


Can I pause my Shopify store at any time?

Yes, you can initiate a pause whenever you deem necessary. However, ensure you're past your free trial and on a paid plan to access the "Pause and Build" option.

Is there a fee to pause my Shopify store?

While pausing your store reduces monthly fees, it doesn't eliminate them. The "Pause and Build" plan costs $9 USD per month.

Can I make changes to my store while it's paused?

Absolutely. The beauty of the "Pause and Build" plan is that it allows full access to the admin panel for making any changes or updates to your store.

What happens to my apps when I pause my store?

Your apps remain active. Should you wish to pause specific apps, you'll need to cancel them individually.

How do I communicate with my customers about pausing my store?

Utilize your website, social media channels, and email marketing to keep your customers informed about the pause and reassure them about your return.

In conclusion, pausing your Shopify store isn't about stepping back; it's about strategically gearing up for what's next. Whether you're recalibrating your business model, recharging your personal batteries, or preparing for a grand rebranding, Shopify's "Pause and Build" plan offers the flexibility you need. Remember, a pause, carefully planned and communicated, can set the stage for a powerful comeback. Now is the time to make the most of this feature, ensuring your store emerges from this hiatus stronger and more focused.