In mid-April Shopify Plus announced the official release of their Certified App program.

As a commerce agency, this was an opportunity for us to have an nerd-out moment over the exciting news. Because, hey, seeing most of your partners’ names on a very exclusive Shopify Plus list is cause for celebration (or at least a blog post)!

This new program, providing Shopify Plus customers with access to the most advanced and value-driven technology partners in the eCommerce space, is aimed to benefit both merchants and app providers.

So let’s talk about how YOU, as a Shopify Plus merchant or an eCommerce expert, can use it to your advantage!

How to Leverage this Program as a Shopify Plus Merchant

As a DTC merchant, you may be wondering how this program can affect the way you select apps for your eCommerce store.

For starters, the program provides a searchable directory of fully vetted, tried and true, technology partners that Shopify Plus endorses for its largest merchants. If you’ve been considering new solutions and are not sure where to begin, this may be the place to start. Or maybe your brand is having trouble selecting which provider to work with, and in that case, this directory may be the guidance you need.

Shopify Plus knows the challenges that their biggest merchants face, and the program is built to be another level of service in addressing those unique problems.

In general, this directory makes it easier to discover the top technology partners in the industry. Cutting down the vast quantity of solutions and technology within both the Shopify Partner Directory and the app store, this program will allow users to more easily navigate reviews and information about apps that will best serve their specific commerce needs.

For many merchants, it’s also great to get insight from your agency provider. If already working with (or planning to choose a Shopify Plus agency), they can easily provide guidance on selecting the right applications and solutions for your digital storefront and needs. Most agencies (BVA included) have official partnerships with these solutions and know all the ins-and-outs of their implementations.

How Shopify Chooses Certified App Partners

What does it take for an app to be part of the Shopify Plus certified directory?

All in an effort to address the needs of merchants, Shopify Plus’ criteria for this program is all about high quality standards and industry best practices.

In addition to the normal Shopify App Store requirements, this program has a more rigorous rubric that is only fulfilled by partners who go above and beyond for their customers and have repeatedly proven their value.

Some of those requirements include:

  • The app has to maintain a rating greater than 4.0 after receiving 10 reviews on the platform, in addition to maintaining extremely rapid support responses to its customers.
  • The solution must provide easily accessible and transparent system updates.
  • Apps must fulfill specific, rigorous security and privacy requirements.
  • The app itself must meet performance standards that indicate a successful and trustworthy solution.

You can also see the full list and explanation of requirements here.

What this Program Means for App Partners

Now, let’s peek at what Shopify Plus partners receive when selected as a Shopify Plus Certified App. It’s a big honor, and here’s why.

According to Shopify Plus, the benefits are:

  • Recognition as a Shopify Plus Certified App Partner
  • A listing in the Shopify Plus App Directory
  • A dedicated strategic partnerships manager
  • Access to developer support
  • Access to a private Shopify Plus Facebook group

These are all a cut above the normal partnership for app providers, resulting in the application receiving more visibility and more support from the Shopify Plus team. This means that all of the apps listed in this directory come with a glowing endorsement from the Plus team, and that merchants can trust they’re in good hands.

Shopify Certified Apps in Action

As a proud Shopify Plus partner, BVA is happy to get to work with many of the Certified App providers.

Here’s a cheat sheet of all the Shopify Plus Certified App partners that are also our agency partners, and what they do:

  • Avalara: Avalara helps companies calculate tax, prepare/remit returns, add business licensing, and manage tax exemptions permits.
  • Emarsys: Emarsys empowers digital marketing leaders and business owners with their omnichannel customer engagement platform.
  • Findify: Findify’s personalization AI puts the products shoppers are most likely to buy right in front of them – for Search, Collections & Recommendations.
  • Gorgias: Gorgias transforms customer support into a profit center, enabling eCommerce merchants to manage all their customer interactions in a unified platform.
  • Justuno: Justuno is an AI visitor conversion platform for intelligent lead capture, personalized messaging, and insights that turn clicks into customers.
  • Klarna: With Klarna, consumers can buy now and pay later, so they can get what they love today with flexible payment solutions.
  • Klaviyo: Klaviyo is a marketing automation platform built for growing brands through 1:1 personal communication, at scale, across web, email, SMS, and social.
  • Klevu: Klevu is an on-site search and navigation platform that allows e-commerce businesses to provide fast, relevant search results to their shoppers.
  • Listrak: Retail digital marketing automation platform for email marketing, SMS mobile messaging, customer insights and cross-channel orchestration.
  • Loop: Loop Returns transforms your return process from a point of friction into a great experience by turning refunds into exchanges in one transaction.
  • LoyaltyLion: An ecommerce customer loyalty and engagement platform, powering growth and retention through data-driven loyalty programs.
  • Nosto: Nosto enables retailers to deliver personalized digital shopping experiences at every touch point, across every device.
  • PowerReviews: Connects billions of shoppers to millions of consumer reviews, advocates and influencers driving connected commerce online, in store and everywhere in between.
  • Privy: An integrated suite of world-class web conversion and email marketing tools.
  • SearchSpring: Giving the world’s most creative online brands the user-friendly search, merchandising, and analytics tools they need to increase conversion and curate unique shopping experiences.
  • Smile.io: Increase retention and boost customer engagement with an easy to use loyalty program built for small businesses.
  • Yotpo: Yotpo’s single-platform approach integrates data-driven solutions for reviews, UGC, loyalty, and referrals, creating higher-converting customer experiences.
  • Zaius: Zaius is the CDP purpose-built for brands to unify the customer profile and deliver relevance into marketing, commerce, and service interactions.

You can also check out the rest of BVA’s partners on our partner page!

Concluding Thoughts

In a space with rapidly advancing technology, and with the growing needs of direct-to-consumer eCommerce brands, it’s important to have reliable solutions partners that actively work to improve your business. This new Certified App program is another way that merchants can easily access the resources that will help solve their biggest challenges.

As an agency to hundreds of Shopify Plus merchants, BVA has experience working with all of the Shopify Plus Certified App partners. We’ve had our own partnership with many of these providers for years, and are very excited to see this new program!

Please feel free to reach out to us if you are interested in learning more about Shopify Plus or the Certified App program.

Megan Holett Megan Holett is the Sales and Marketing Coordinator at BVA. Her role involves bridging the gap between sales processes and agency marketing through content creation and other initiatives.