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Why Isn’t There a Shopify Gift Card App?

Many Shopify store owners are on the search for a Shopify gift card app as a way to add gift card functionality to their sites without having to pay for a more expensive plan.
However, there are no Shopify gift card apps available in the Shopify app store, which is the official source for apps. In addition, there are no other viable options for a Shopify gift card app. While there are some “underground” solutions available, they aren’t the best route.

Why aren’t there any Shopify gift card apps available?

The main reason is that Shopify doesn’t allow most developers to access the necessary parts of the system to create and redeem gift cards. Because of this, any developers who create gift card apps for Shopify need to do so outside the official Shopify developer guidelines.
Using an app that is outside of these guidelines is risky since it could stop working at any time and there’s also a good chance for errors or bugs that could affect the ability for users to purchase or redeem gift cards. This could prove disastrous to a Shopify store and cause endless frustration for both shoppers and store owners.
Because of this, the best way to add gift cards to your Shopify store is to upgrade to a plan that supports it. The gift cards you sell online will also seamlessly integrate with your Shopify POS if your store, if applicable.
Shopify includes the gift card functionality in the “Shopify” or Pro level of its plans. Although this plan does cost more per month, not only will you get access to the gift card functionality, but there are many other features that become available:
  • Lower Shopify Payments rates
  • Bigger savings on shipping labels
  • Abandoned cart recovery
  • Lower transaction fees on outside gateways
  • Advanced reporting functionality
Adding Shopify gift cards will cost about $50 more per month, which may seem like a steep investment.
However, think of it this way:
  • If a Shopify gift card app was available in the app store (it’s not), you’d likely pay around $20 a month for a Shopify gift card app. So, just considering that cost, you’re almost half way to the cost of the higher Shopify plan.
  • Since “Shopify” level and Pro plans include the gift card feature, this means it’s also fully supported by Shopify support, whereas apps aren’t guaranteed to be supported. This could end up saving you a lot of time trying to set up and configure an app and then troubleshoot problems when things go wrong. Instead, since you’re paying for the gift card functionality, Shopify will work with you to fix anything that goes wrong.
  • You’ll also save some money on slightly lower credit card processing fees, which, for busy stores, could be significant savings.
  • You’ll also gain access to more advanced reporting functionality, which can save time and make it easier to track your store performance and financials. You can save and create common reports, which can save tons of time.
  • Shopify level plans also have additional savings on shipping labels and transaction fees on external gateways.
  • These plans also include access to abandoned cart recovery, which can bring back business and revenue you would have lost, which can more than pay for the extra plan cost.
  • Also, don’t forget that selling gift cards is a great way to boost revenue since shoppers are more likely to purchase gift cards if they’re having trouble picking out a gift for a loved one, rather than shopping elsewhere. Most gift cards, when redeemed, also end up with the customer buying more than the value of the gift card, which means even more revenue.
  • Other third party gift card providers also often charge an additional monthly fee as high as $200 plus take a portion of each gift card sold.
Once you’ve upgraded your Shopify store to include the gift card feature, consider adding the Shopkeeper Gift Card app. This app, which has a free version version, takes the Shopify gift card functionality a step farther and allows customers to pick from hundreds of gift card designs as well as add a personal note and “from” name.