Shopify Pay aims to complete the picture for online checkout

Shopify introduced a new product at its developer conference today, which will reduce friction during online orders and simplify checkout across any stores that run on Shopify’s ecommerce platform. Shopify Pay is similar to other instant payment solutions that store your info for fast access later on, including PayPal Express Checkout, but it works across any store using Shopify as mentioned, and it reduces the number of fields a customer has to fill out during checkout from 16 fields down to just two.

The Shopify Pay checkout process also offers security while reducing complexity; after you opt-in during an initial checkout, which users will see the first time they make a purchase on a Shopify store, you’ll receive a 6-digit verification code when subsequent Shopify stores recognize your email address. This comes in via SMS, like a second factor authentication code might, and you then just type that code into the field that pops up in order to complete the transaction.

This automatically fills out your stored payment and shipping address information, which then lets users finish the process with just one tap or click to confirm the order. It works across platforms where Shopify is available, too, letting you use it on desktop and mobile browsers and via apps.

The new Shopify Pay flow is very simple, but it’s also not mandatory – Shopify Product Manger Richard Btaiche tells me merchants can opt out of using the service on their store. But it’s designed entirely to speed up the end of the purchase process, which is when so many carts end up abandoned, so it’s likely to drive a significant increase in sales for just about any merchant that uses it. Shopify speeds up the checkout process by 40 percent, and conversions occur around 18 percent more among returning customers thanks to the added ease of making a purchase.

For consumers, it’s a big convenience feature, of course, and Shopify says it’s secure because the info is stored on Shopify’s own PCI compliant servers. Plus, only someone with access to your phone can make a purchase using the system.

Shopify has already worked closely with both Apple and Google on Apple Pay and Android Pay integration across its platform, but this provides a third accelerated checkout option that can work alongside those, and that can sub in when those aren’t available, like on unowned and shared devices or third-party browsers.

This feature only stands to get better over time, as more merchants use the Shopify platform. It’s a strong competitive advantage for Shopify, especially since it’s designed to help its users get more sales, which is all they really want anyway. Shopify Pay is starting to roll out now, and will be available to all merchants, new and existing, in about a month’s time.