Everything You Need to Know About Shopify's Costs, Transaction Fees and Foreign Exchange Fees in 2023: A Comprehensive Reference Guide


As an ecommerce business, you need to know what tools are available and how they can help you grow and succeed. Shopify is one of the most popular ecommerce platforms, and understanding its costs, fees, themes, and app subscriptions is essential when considering this platform for your business. In this blog post, we will provide a comprehensive reference guide to everything you need to know about these aspects of Shopify.

Although the content and examples are rooted in Shopify pricing for Hong Kong, they can be adapted to other countries or regions. Any variations in local prices will be explicitly noted.

This article has been updated as of 2023.

Overview of Shopify's Pricing: What are the different subscription options?

Shopify offers five different subscription plans to suit businesses of all shapes and sizes.

The "Shopify Starter" plan is the most affordable option at $5 per month. It's perfect for those who want to sell their products through social media or messaging apps without needing to maintain an online store.

The "Basic Shopify" plan costs $33 per month (or $25 if billed annually), which comes with an online store, blog, unlimited products, inventory management tools and basic reports; up to 2 staff accounts included.

The "Shopify" plan costs $92 per month (or $69 if billed annually) and provides up to 5 staff accounts so that you can easily manage your store, as well as additional orders, sales, profit and customer reports.

Advanced Shopify costs $399/month (or $299 if billed annually) and comes with up to 15 staff accounts along with the most comprehensive suite of reports, allowing you to automate the collection of duties and import taxes for customers and set product prices based on country or region.

Finally there's Shopify Plus which is tailored towards high volume sales or enterprise level organizations. It includes 24/7 email and phone support, a dedicated success manager and full customization capabilities; starting at $2000/month.  For full details of the comparison of each Shopify Plan, you can read further from Shopify: https://help.shopify.com/en/manual/intro-to-shopify/pricing-plans/plans-features

You can begin with the "Basic Shopify" plan – either $33 per month or $25 when paid annually. As your business grows, it's worth considering upgrading to one of their higher plans as soon as you can afford it.  Each of these offers better tools and support to help boost your chances of success.

Transaction Fees: How much will you be charged when you accept payments?

When you accept payments in Hong Kong, the transaction fees vary depending on the plan you choose. For those using Shopify Payments, the Basic Shopify Plan charges 3.3% + HK$2.35 per transaction, while the Shopify Plan and Advanced Shopify Plan charge 3.2% + HK$2.35 and 3.1% + HK$2.35 respectively. If you use a third-party payment gateway such as PayPal, then there is an additional fee of 2%, 1%, or 0.5%, depending on your plan.

When you use Shopify Payments to accept payments, the transaction fees are:

  • Basic Shopify Plan: 3.3% + HK$2.35
  • Shopify Plan: 3.2% + HK$2.35
  • Advanced Shopify Plan: 3.1% + HK$2.35

However, if you use another payment gateway (such as PayPal), Shopify has a 3rd party fees on transactions not processed through Shopify Payments. The fees for this are:

  • Basic Shopify Plan: 2.0%
  • Shopify Plan: 1.0%
  • Advanced Shopify Plan: 0.5%
  • Shopify Plus: 0.15%

Foreign Exchange Fees: How do they affect international transactions?

When making international transactions, currency exchange fees can have an impact on the amount you receive from a payout. The currency conversion rate is the market rate at which one currency is exchanged for another and usually does not include any markup – e.g., a conversion rate of USD/EUR 0.8788 means that $1 USD is exchanged for €0.87 EUR.

Shopify charges a currency conversion fee when payment is captured; this fee varies by country, but in the US it’s 1.5%, while in all other countries and regions with Shopify Payments, it’s 2%. This fee will not be borne by your customer - instead, you must either pay for it or set the manual currency exchange rate higher to cover these costs.

Cost of Shopify themes and apps

Shopify offers a wide range of themes for your ecommerce store. 11 free themes are available, along with 108 paid themes that range from $180 - $350. It's only necessary to purchase a theme once, and all future updates are then included free of charge. You can buy a theme through the Shopify Theme Store or any open market such as Envato; however, keep in mind that third-party themes may be less expensive but will not have been vetted nor code reviewed by Shopify, so it's best to stick to the official store if you wish to receive the best level of support from Shopify team.

Shopify apps are designed to provide additional features and functionality for your store; these apps may be published either by Shopify itself or by third-party developers. Apps published by Shopify itself tend to be free of charge and offer basic features, while those from third-party developers come with more options but will cost between a few dollars up to thousands per month depending on the scope of their features and how often they're used.

Get Started with Shopify

This article offers a thorough overview of costs associated with using Shopify for your business. It's cost-effective and a great way to build an ecommerce business, but if you have any questions before committing to Shopify, don't hesitate to reach out for a consultation.


1. What are Shopify payment processing fees and how much do they cost?

Shopify payment processing fees are the fees that Shopify charges for processing payments made through its built-in payment gateway, Shopify Payments. The fees vary by location, but in Hong Kong, fees are:

  • Basic Shopify Plan: 3.3% + HK$2.35
  • Shopify Plan: 3.2% + HK$2.35
  • Advanced Shopify Plan: 3.1% + HK$2.35

2. Can I use a third-party payment gateway with Shopify to avoid payment processing fees?

Yes, Shopify allows you to use third-party payment gateways, such as PayPal, Stripe, QFPay, 2C2P and PayDollar. However, if you choose to use a third-party payment gateway, Shopify will charge an additional transaction fee of 0.5% - 2% per transaction, depending on your Shopify plan.

  • Basic Shopify Plan: 2.0%
  • Shopify Plan: 1.0%
  • Advanced Shopify Plan: 0.5%
  • Shopify Plus: 0.15%

3. Is it worth paying for a more expensive Shopify plan to save on fees in the long run?

This will depend on your business's specific needs and budget.In most cases, upgrading to a more expensive plan makes sense because it provides access to features or benefits that will drive your business forward as well as ultimately save you time and money in the long run.

4. Can I Get a Discount on Shopify Plans

Shopify does not offer discounts on its pricing plans.The pricing for each plan is fixed and transparent,and there are no discounts available.However,Shopify does offer a 25% discount on annual plans.Additionally if you are a nonprofit organization,you may be eligible for discounted pricing through Shopifys NPO plan.Finally,in some regions,the price could be lower as Shopify adjusted the prices of subscription plan to the local cost of living.