Taking a Break? Here's How to Pause Your Shopify Store Effectively

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Understanding Your Options: Pause and Build Plan
  3. Communication is Key
  4. Reactivating Your Store
  5. Pause VS Deactivation: A Clarification
  6. Frequently Asked Questions

In the bustling world of e-commerce, life sometimes demands that we step back and take a breather, whether for personal reasons, to stock up on inventory, or to revamp our online storefronts. But what happens to your Shopify store during such times? Is it possible to hit the pause button without losing everything you've worked so hard to build?


Imagine this: Your Shopify store has been your labor of love, growing steadily over the years. However, life throws you a curveball. Maybe it's a much-needed vacation, a personal emergency, or simply a strategic step back to redesign your store. Suddenly, the question arises, "How can I pause my Shopify store?" It's a valid query that many entrepreneurs find themselves pondering. The good news is that Shopify offers flexible options to pause your store, allowing you to take the time you need without completely shutting down your business.

In this comprehensive blog post, we will delve into the steps to pause your Shopify store, key considerations, the differences between pausing and deactivating, and how to optimally use this time to enhance your store. By the end, you'll have a clear understanding of how to effectively manage your online store during a break, ensuring that you can return to it without skipping a beat.

Understanding Your Options: Pause and Build Plan

Shopify recognizes that life is not always predictable, and sometimes, business owners need to take a step back. Enter the Pause and Build plan, a thoughtful solution designed for those who wish to temporarily halt sales but continue working on their store. Priced at an affordable $9 USD per month, this plan significantly reduces your operational costs while keeping the door open for behind-the-scenes work.

Features and Limitations

While on this plan, your store's frontend remains accessible to visitors, allowing them to browse products, read blog posts, and engage with your brand. However, the checkout functionality is disabled, preventing new orders from being placed. It's a suitable arrangement for those undergoing a rebrand, enhancing their SEO, or preparing for a seasonal relaunch.

Navigating to the Pause and Build Plan

Activating the Pause and Build plan is straightforward:

  1. Navigate to your Shopify admin dashboard.
  2. Select 'Settings', followed by 'Plan'.
  3. At the bottom, find and click on 'Deactivate Store'.
  4. Choose 'Pause and Build'.

This process puts your store in a dormant state wherein you can still access the admin panel, tweak your design, and refine your offerings without incurring the full cost of your Shopify plan.

Communication is Key

During the pause, communicating with your customer base is crucial. It's advisable to update your homepage or dedicated pages with messages explaining the pause, anticipated changes, and the expected date of return. Engaging with your customers via email marketing and social media can keep the interest alive, building anticipation for your store's comeback.

Reactivating Your Store

When you're ready to dive back into action, reactivating your store is as simple as changing your plan. You don't necessarily have to revert to your previous plan; this could be the perfect opportunity to reassess your needs and possibly upgrade.

Steps for Reactivation

  1. Go to the 'Plan' section in your settings.
  2. Click 'Change Plan' and select a new plan that suits your current business requirements.

This process will instantly reactivate your store's checkout functionality, and you can resume selling your products and services to your eager customers.

Pause VS Deactivation: A Clarification

It's essential to distinguish between pausing and deactivating your Shopify store. Pausing allows you to temporarily suspend sales while maintaining backend access. On the other hand, deactivating your store is a more permanent action, canceling your subscription and removing access to your Shopify admin. Reactivation is possible, but it requires entering a valid payment method and potentially starting from scratch.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I pause my Shopify store?

Yes, the Pause and Build plan is specially designed for this purpose, offering a reduced-cost option to keep your store's backend accessible without active selling.

Do I need to pay a Shopify fee while my store is paused?

While on the Pause and Build plan, a nominal fee of $9 USD per month is applicable, significantly lower than standard subscription rates.

What happens when I resume selling?

Upon reactivation, you're given the flexibility to choose a new plan that aligns with your business model, enabling a seamless transition back to full operation.

Is my Shopify store hidden from the public if paused?

No, your store remains accessible to the public for browsing, but purchasing capabilities are disabled until you decide to reactivate.

In conclusion, taking a break from your Shopify store doesn't mean you have to cut ties completely. The Pause and Build plan is a testament to Shopify's understanding of the dynamic needs of entrepreneurs. By following the outlined steps and considering communication strategies, you can ensure that your pause period is productive, setting the stage for a triumphant return that delights your customers and rejuvenates your business.