Back in Spring 2018, Shopify announced at their yearly UNITE conference that they are preparing to launch the one and only Multi-Currency feature for Shopify Payments.
In winter, Shopify Plus stores were the first to get their hands on it. Later on, a couple of months back, Shopify announced they are releasing this feature to all the merchants that have Shopify Payments enabled. A great time to dig in and check it out!
To start with — it’s a wonderful solution. Paying in your local currency removes any friction compared to the initial solution, where a customer would see a price converted in their local currency on the product page, only to reach the checkout and notice the price is actually in the store’s default currency.
Just imagine shopping from an impressive store with great prices in USD, then going to checkout and see the prices in DKK (the Danish Krone). So confusing that it significantly affects the conversion rate. From now on, the whole process is frictionless.
Although an awesome feature, we felt that it can still be improved, maybe because it lacks the functionality for currency conversion in other currencies beyond the ones currently supported by Shopify (USD, AUD, CAD, EUR, GBP, DKK, NZD, HKD, SGD, JPY). Especially as Shopify announced that currency converter apps are not compatible with Multi-Currency:
If you are selling in multiple currencies with Shopify Payments, then you can not use a multi-currency app from the Shopify App Store. Multi-currency apps are not compatible with this feature.
So we accepted the challenge and, 563 coffee cups later, we’re ready for prime-time: the first currency converter fully integrated with Shopify’s Multi-Currency feature is now live!
How it works:
- When a visitor lands on your store, we will automatically detect their location and assign the corresponding currency. Shopify only offers this to Shopify Plus stores, but we are extending it to every other Shopify store!
- If the currency is listed in the merchant’s presentment currencies, we’ll let Shopify handle the currency conversion, according to the rounding rules set up in Shopify. Elementary, my dear Watson, all the apps in VITALS work with Shopify’s Multi-Currency so they will follow the same rounding rules.
- If the visitor comes from a location that is not currently supported by Shopify Payments (or enabled in your settings), we’ll continue to handle the currency conversion the old fashion way (without checkout conversion).
- When a visitor wants to select another currency from our currency switcher, we check if the currency is used by the store via Shopify’s Multi-Currency. So we either get the conversion data from Shopify or from our own currency converter, which uses the same currency exchange rate API provider Shopify is using.
That’s all, folks! We managed to achieve the impossible so that you can now use a unique, state-of-the-art currency converter to sell to a global audience.
Even more important, we were able to test the effect of the integration with a few select merchants that got access to an early release. The effects were simply amazing: 12% increase in conversion rate due to integrating Shopify’s Multi-Currency with the VITALS Currency Converter.
It’s worth noting why Multi-Currency is only available for Shopify Payments-enabled stores. Only Shopify Payments can process payments in a customer’s local (presentment) currency. If your customer chooses a payment option from a different payment provider, like PayPal, then their payment is made in the main currency of your store. So they will end up paying a bit more because the amount will be converted back to your store’s main currency.
So, depending on your target market and the preferred form of payment of your target customers, you might want to only stick with Shopify Payments, a really successful joint venture between Shopify and Stripe.