E-commerce has become ingrained in our society to the point that a business without an online store seems outdated. With that popularity, the industry has grown more flexible, accommodating even the largest enterprises. Thanks to that, new solutions are constantly popping up to modernize digital stores and make them more scalable.
In fact, Shopify, one of the most popular e-commerce platforms out there, has recently released Shopify Commerce Components, a tech stack aimed explicitly at big businesses. In the current times of heated competition, this future-oriented set could be vital to your company. But is jumping on this bandwagon worth it in a constantly expanding and changing industry?
As an experienced Shopify development company, DigitalSuits will use its expertise to dissect the pros and cons of this new product. Today, we’ll address the importance of using customizable tools for your e-store and aspects of Shopify’s new system. By taking a clear look at these components, we will help you see if they’re right for your business.
Why does scalability matter in e-commerce?
The broader question here is why traditional e-commerce platforms aren’t delivering the flexibility that businesses seek. However, to answer that, we need to explain scalability's importance first.
As with any industry, the main goal of any e-commerce business is growth, both in terms of revenue and audience. This means your store needs to be designed to accommodate increasingly larger numbers of users with minimal waiting time. A slow-loading website is unacceptable to a customer who’s just trying to make a quick purchase.
Traditional platforms often fail this test, as they mostly cater to small or mid-size businesses. This leaves a gap where large enterprises exist: their whole model depends on scalability, but the market is not providing it. In the end, it simply gives an advantage to companies that develop their own scalable solutions.
What happens when your platform lacks scalability?
First of all, your growth is limited. You can’t sustain more customers when you have an API limit on transactions. This will be especially obvious during major sales points like the holidays. If your website returns an error during checkout, it will likely cost you a sale.
Commerce Components by Shopify: What are they?
Commerce Components is a composable stack, created by Shopify’s engineers. These are essentially customizable building blocks that help create an e-commerce store. Users can pick which parts they want and either create a new website from scratch or integrate components into an existing store.
Here is a list of Shopify Components categories:
- Frontend (such as storefront, cart, and checkout)
- Headless API and Admin API
- Backend (such as the product catalog, inventory, and order management)
- Omnichannel extensions.
These components can work with any hosting provider, as well as a highly customized storefront. If you opt for Shopify headless commerce, components can actually optimize the store even further than regular headless development.
Why do they matter?
The big selling point here is the power of choice. If a business is overall happy with its store but wants to change the cart or inventory tracking, Components provides an elegant solution. This stack disassembles Shopify Plus’s features and lets companies decide what they need. That makes it easier to innovate and improve only the problematic parts of your storefront.
Moreover, these composable parts can streamline a store’s development and, if applied correctly, help it scale. By letting users mix and match, Shopify has created an opportunity to focus on scalability without sacrificing design or quality.
8 key advantages of Shopify Components
Now that you know the general information about the components of e-commerce from Shopify, let’s discuss its pros in detail. These are based on the experience of the DigitalSuits team during actual development projects. The short list of pros is as follows:
- more bandwidth
- support for plugins
- flexible pricing
- priority tech support
- easy migration
- targeted toward enterprises.
Independent from Shopify Plus
While we’re big fans of Shopify Plus and the robust feature set it offers, Commerce Components is independent of it, and that is a great thing. The power of Plus comes with limitations created by the fact that anything done on it has to be within the Plus infrastructure. Components have no such limitation, giving more creative control to users.
This matters most to big businesses that want their stores to stand out. Most small e-commerce stores get away with looking and feeling similar, but enterprises need the extra advantage. With the constraints of Shopify Plus removed, they will get it, especially if they have a good development team.
Extremely generous bandwidth
In terms of scalability, one of the biggest pros of Commerce Components is its unthrottled API rate limits. This means no matter how many customers are using your store, even on high-traffic days like Black Friday, it will work just fine. Backing this up is a 40,000 checkouts per minute limit, guaranteeing that no customers will have to abandon their carts.
Moreover, stores using Components have the ability to host more product variants. This means you can have more variety to offer your customers, easily rivaling your competitors.
Support for Shopify apps and plugins
Despite being independent of Shopify’s infrastructure, Components support the thousands of apps that make Shopify so popular. Be it SEO optimization, bespoke design elements, or checkout customization, you can get it from Shopify’s community.
In fact, you can order Shopify app development from DigitalSuits to enhance your store. Combining unique apps with Shopify Components can help your website stand out.
More competitive pricing
While most of Shopify’s offerings are tier-based and fixed, meaning some will end up overpaying, Components are different. For this product, Shopify has chosen a usage-based rate, so you’ll be paying based on your own sales.
Priority support from Shopify
Although Shopify Plus users get high-quality support in general, Shopify announced that requests from Components’ users will be prioritized. Considering the high rate of traffic and customers that enterprises get, this is a crucial advantage. Knowing that a support request will be dealt with post-haste puts a lot of worries you may have at ease.
Let’s say this upfront: Shopify always tries to smooth the migration process from other e-commerce platforms. However, with Components, you don’t actually need to fully migrate at all. Instead, you can take the best of what Shopify has to offer and attach it to your existing infrastructure. This removes a lot of the cost associated with migrating platforms.
On the product page, Shopify boasts a 99.99% uptime, as it should. Having this kind of stability is essential for big storefronts, where thousands of customers could be shopping at any moment. While other platforms may offer 90% or even 95%, at this level, even a single percent is vital.
Combine that with the fact that everything in Components is done by Shopify’s veteran engineers, and you have a truly impressive quality level. If stability and guaranteed excellence is what you seek, Components should be at the top of your list.
Made with enterprises in mind
In a market as broad as e-commerce, it’s hard to cater to everyone with just one product. This has been a rather apparent flaw of traditional platforms, which would not withstand the demands of a large enterprise. However, with Commerce Components Shopify is specifically targeting companies with a $500+ million gross merchandise value (GMV).
Forget about trying to stretch the limits of a solution aimed at mom-and-pop stores. Your engineers will be free to take Shopify’s APIs and features and apply them as they see fit. Thanks to the aforementioned unlimited bandwidth, there is no artificial growth stunting, finally giving enterprises room to breathe.
What are the cons of Commerce Components?
With such an extensive list of pros, Components may seem like the perfect solution. That will certainly be true for large enterprises seeking more scalability, but Components aren’t for everyone. Here’s why:
Too much for a small business
Like we said, this product is aimed at enterprises, so small business owners should look at Shopify’s more standard offerings. You simply do not need the higher bandwidth, as your store isn’t handling that much traffic.
Detachment from Shopify isn’t always a good thing
Smaller stores would likely prefer to rely on Shopify’s hosting instead of handling it themselves. Besides, Shopify makes it very easy to create a basic e-commerce website. This way, you can choose a DIY approach with the safety net of Shopify’s infrastructure.
As you can see, the cons are mostly related to small e-commerce brands, which aren’t considered the target audience anyway. If you’re looking for a solution that fits a startup or mid-size brand, consider Shopify Plus development.
How DigitalSuits can help
Since 2015, DigitalSuits has been working on Shopify projects for a worldwide network of clients. Be it migration or store development, we have covered every aspect of this platform. After the release of Commerce Components, our team has studied this new product extensively, and we’re incredibly excited to do more projects with it.
One of our core values is being proactive, and the flexible nature of Components helps us achieve that. By offering new ideas and solutions, we can help you bring your ambitious e-commerce ideas to life. We have experience making Shopify plugins and apps, so a creative approach is guaranteed.
A stack as broad and powerful as Shopify’s Components deserves a skilled team to make it shine. Without being overly modest, we can say DigitalSuits is that team. From noticing tiny details to seeing the bigger picture, we know how to make the most of these tools.
Commerce Components by Shopify made a splash with its announcement, and for a good reason. It’s a trailblazer among its kind — a solution that explicitly targets large enterprises with massive customer bases. Moreover, it encourages companies to take apart Shopify’s feature set and leave only what they need to succeed.
With unlimited bandwidth and API access, Components will be a massive boon for high-traffic stores. Reducing the risk of downtime on Black Friday and making sure that customers don’t encounter errors during checkout can be a game changer for conversion rates.
On our side, such a flexible stack makes the work of development agencies like DigitalSuits more interesting. We’ve tackled countless Shopify projects, including migration, engineering, and design, but Components opened new doors for us and our clients. If you’re seeking an e-commerce solution that guarantees scalability, Commerce Components has our approval.
In fact, while we talked extensively about it in this guide, there are more depths to uncover. Whether it’s improving an existing store or creating one from scratch with custom plugins and Components integration, we have the know-how. Get in touch today and let’s discuss what Components can do for your business.