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Goodbye Checkout.liquid – Hello Extensibility

Written by
Mike Fryers
February 1, 2024

Shopify rarely sits still for long. The world of ecommerce is constantly changing, and over the years, we’ve seen Shopify evolve in leaps and bounds to stay ahead of the game.

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What's new with Shopify in 2024

Now as we head into 2024, one of the big new changes on the horizon is the deprecation of the Checkout.liquid system that so many sellers will be familiar with.

In its place, Shopify merchants are being treated to the powerful new suite of tools contained in the Checkout Extensibility package. 

So let’s take a closer look – we’re going to delve into some of the new features offered by Shopify Extensibility, as well as outlining the benefits it can offer to you, your store, and your customers. 

Introducing Shopify Extensibility

Shopify Extensibility originally launched in 2022. It was an exclusive tool for Shopify Plus users, which offered a new and much improved take on their storefront customisation tools previously available through Checkout.liquid. But now Shopify is in the process of making Extensibility the standard for Plus stores – with a plan to ultimately deprecate Checkout.liquid by 13 August 2024.

So change is coming. And our advice would be that you start getting to grips with these new tools sooner rather than later, partly, in order to ensure a seamless transition to the new system. But also – well, because the news tools offered by Extensibility really are that good.

Let’s break down what Shopify Extensibility has to offer.

Extensibility in a Nutshell

Shopify Extensibility is a powerful checkout system packed full of useful apps and branding tools that are straightforward and ready to use, right out of the box.

It’s no exaggeration to say that Checkout Extensibility aims to revolutionise the way merchants design and customise their ecommerce checkouts. Shopify has shown that Extensibility’s unique customisation options allow merchants more freedom than ever to run their store the way they want… while new frontend modules such as strategically placed upsells can boost your conversion rates and revenue.

We have now spent a lot of time exploring the potential of Extensibility. Just as we did, we expect you’ll probably find all kinds of personal and novel uses for it (because that’s what it’s designed for)... but for now we want to highlight what we felt were the top five features that Extensibility can offer to Shopify merchants.

Five Top Features in Checkout Extensibility

Extensibility packs a lot of tools under the hood, but we think that these five features in particular are going to be game-changers.

1. A Whole New Look and Feel for Your Checkout

We’ll start with the most obvious feature of Extensibility – the way it looks. Shopify’s new Checkout Branding API allows you much greater freedom than ever before to customise your checkout page. You’ll never have to break the consistency of your store branding once you have the power to design checkouts that feature all your own colours, fonts and logos, to appear as fully-integrated pages on your unique personalised store. 

Shopify has always led the way in this field, but previously this level of customisation was only achievable through custom checkout builds, which inevitably added complexity and cost for vendors. What these new systems allow, is full flexibility and customisation without having to actually build a custom checkout journey. As a result, we can honestly say that Extensibility takes ecommerce design to a whole new level.

2. Backend Flexibility

Along with changes to the frontend user experience, naturally, Shopify Extensibility also makes some pretty major changes to how you can use your backend. Shopify knows that every business is different – and this new suite of tools known as Shopify Functions is scalable to any operation, by allowing you to make significant changes to the business logic of your store

Whether you want more control over item-by-item or tiered discounts, or to provide custom shipping rates, add validation systems on carts and returns, even programme your own unique order routing system… these tools allow you to adapt your Shopify service to the shape of your business, rather than the other way around.

3. Post-Purchase Extensions

Extensibility enables you to create bespoke after-sale content, allowing you to make the absolute most out of any transaction on your store. 

You might want to direct your buyers to other items that could interest them… or gather more data from them in the form of a survey, or invite them to sign up for product support or membership schemes. These pages can be placed between the checkout and the confirmation screen, for maximum visibility.

4. Behaviour Tracking

What was once a concept limited to science fiction, “buyer behaviour tracking” is now a standard feature rolling out as part of the Shopify Extensibility package – and this is a seriously powerful tool for you to put to use. 

Using Web Pixel API, you’ll be able to add a tracking pixel that monitors and tracks the behaviour of your store visitors. You have never had this much insight into your users’ experience, and the in-depth data it provides will allow you to optimise your campaigns and maximise conversion rates like never before.

5. Bespoke Functionality

Perhaps the best thing about Extensibility is its open-ended approach to experimentation and unique customisation. It really does leave a lot of room for your own imagination, and using Checkout UI extensions, you’ll be able to create your own bespoke modules that can be installed wherever you want them in the checkout process.

And really, that’s the beauty of Shopify Extensibility – some of the best things you end up using it for might be original functions that you think up yourself.

CheckoutExtensibility: The Verdict

Here at Inspira Digital, we are completely sold on Shopify Extensibility. It offers everything that Shopify has built their winning reputation on, and then some! It supports impressive and user-friendly customisation of both the frontend and backend of your store, it’s more compatible than ever, and it seamlessly integrates with Shop Pay (which is a marked improvement over Checkout.liquid, where Shop Pay functionality came at the expense of customisation options). 

Extensibility takes advantage of Shopify’s industry leading one-page checkout system, but it also gives you the option to create post-purchase pages for additional deals, feedback, or membership offers.

To put it bluntly: you’ve never had this much control over your ecommerce platform.

What’s more, the system is so straightforward to use that you’re not going to need to hire devs to implement all these changes and customisations through code. All the tools built into Shopify Extensibility are designed to be easy for your in-house team to use, saving you on development costs in the long run.

Getting Started With Extensibility

If you’re a Shopify Plus merchant, then it’s easy to make the switch from Checkout.liquid to Extensibility – simply head over to “Settings”, then “Checkout”, and then under “Checkout Customisation” you’ll be able to start experimenting with a draft layout in Extensibility right away.

However – on 13 August when Shopify finally puts Checkout.liquid to bed, all Shopify users will be moving over to the new system. And for that reason, we strongly recommend that you get a headstart in Extensibility now.

As an experienced Shopify agency we’ve helped countless clients to get set up with the perfect ecommerce platforms for their businesses – so if you need any guidance or help as you get to grips with the new Shopify Extensions suite, and everything it’s capable of, we’ll be glad to assist. 

Drop us a line, and let’s talk about getting your business set up with the best ecommerce platform going. 

Thanks for reading, we’re Inspira Digital.

We launched the 123rd store on Shopify, today we are one of the most experienced Shopify Experts in the world, delivering industry-leading Shopify services for fast-growing ambitious brands. We have helped build 100s of successful stores and have delivered 1000s of individual projects for Shopify and Shopify Plus clients globally.

Clients that work with us know we work passionately, to make sense of your commerce business, so if you want to talk to a team of experts about how best to take advantage of the Shopify platform, then let's talk.

Inspira Digital — High volume commerce handled beautifully.

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