Boosting Your Sales with a Shopify Waitlist App

Shopify waitlists are software applications or platforms that are designed to help merchants handle product and variant waitlists, and send stock alerts to customers when items are back in stock. They can also be used for pre launch, to generate buzz, grow demand and capture potential leads.

You can improve inventory management as well as boost sales by collecting a list of interested customers prior to receiving stock.

This guide will explain the reasons you might implement a Shopify waitlist, as well as how to make sure it’s successful. We’ll also touch on how to choose an app and how to set it up.

Key Takeaways

  • A Shopify Waitlist can help Shopify stores grow their customer base, increase customer loyalty, manage inventory and drive sales growth. It can also be a useful technique for a new product launch.
  • Selecting the right app is essential.
  • Implement a waitlist strategy that can be improved and optimised over time. To do this you’ll need to setup integrations with your main email marketing tool, so you can leverage segmentation and personalization strategies.

The Power of Waitlists for Your Shopify Store

Waitlists can be a win-win addition to your Shopify store, if you’ve currently got live out-of-stock product pages on your storefront. By letting customers know when their chosen products come back in stock, you’re marketing to the ‘converted’, and this can encourage customers to complete a purchase.

Customer Retention and Loyalty

Waitlists are a great way to nurture loyal customers, increase customer satisfaction and retention. When products are unavailable, customers can join the product waitlists in order to get early access when it returns into stock. This sense of special treatment from early access, can help sales increase and by streamlining the waitlist experience, casual shoppers may be more inclined to purchase.

Inventory Management

Waitlists can be great tool by providing valuable data on your Shopify store products which aids in making informed choices for inventory management as well as product selection.

By reviewing this valuable data, you will be able to understand highly requested products better so they can be properly stocked according to demand.

This ensures there won’t be any overselling issues as well as preventing frustrating shopping experiences for buyers or inadvertently training shoppers to look elsewhere. Having a soundly-managed stock flow has the power to heighten customer commitment plus increase overall profits too.

Through more advanced techniques like referral marketing you can motivate individuals to recommend products to their friends, by offering them an exclusive incentive, such as securing a prime spot at the head of the waiting lists.

Sales optimisation and capturing intent

Waitlisting can be an important factor to help increase sales. Allowing customers to join waiting lists for out-of-stock items, as well as for new products pre-launch, is a huge buying signal. And one that you can and should take advantage of. Collecting customer interest will allow you to specifically market towards these potential customers, growing hype and converting this interest into sales, as well as assisting you to grow your customer base.

Choosing the Right Shopify Waitlist App

The Shopify app store has many different Shopify waitlist apps available for Shopify store owners. So when deciding which app to utilise for your Shopify store, it’s important to look into features, pricing and user reviews.

Essential Features

When you analyze a Shopify waitlist app, it is vital to ensure it has the following essential features:

  • Customer registration – Easy registration process for customers to join the waitlist, that captures all the details you need.
  • Notifications – Automated notifications via the method you choose (email, sms etc).
  • Customer engagement – Marketing features to allow you to engage with customers, and generate excitement.
  • Analytics and reporting – Insights into customer behaviour and preferences for better decision-making regarding future product selection.
  • Customization options – Important to allow you to customize the join waiting list button as well as the notifications/emails sent to customers.

Pricing and Reviews

When selecting a Shopify waitlist application, cost is an an important factor and one that can indicate to you the the level of support and extent of the features the app may offer.

App reviews also offer insight on the quality of service and other stores experiences using the app as well as positive and negative aspects of the app, so you can make an educated decision about which waitlist app best suits your Shopify store.

Top Shopify Waitlist Apps to Boost Sales

For merchants seeking to boost sales and improve inventory management, we’ve compiled a short list of some of the top waitlist apps in the Shopify app store that you can utilise in your online store.

Each application provides their own exclusive set of capabilities and benefits – from tracking who’s on your waiting list to automated emails when products become available – meaning it’s really important that stores find which suits them best before investing in any platform.

Appikon ‑ Back In Stock: Overview and Benefits

Appikon ‑ Back In Stock app states that it helps you automatically notify customers when previously out of stock products become available. Highlights of this app includes; Automatic back in stock notifications & back order reminders via email and 100% customizable SMS and Signup form is compatible with all themes.

Krtbite: Back in Stock|Restock

Krtbite: Back in Stock|Restock app states that it creates the out-of-stock & price drop waitlists to see products in demand. Highlights of this app are that they allow alerts/notifications for back-in-stock alerts, price drop alerts, abandoned cart alerts and is also fully customisable.

Setting Up Your Waitlist

Below is a step by step guide for setting up a waitlist app on your Shopify store:

  1. Choose a waitlist app from the app store.
  2. Install your chosen waitlist app: click the “Add app” button on the app’s page in the Shopify App Store. Follow the prompts to install the app on your Shopify store.
  3. Configure the app: access the app from your Shopify admin. Configure the app settings, including appearance, notification preferences, and integration with your store.
  4. Enable product waitlists, in the app settings, specify which products or variants should have waitlist functionality enabled. This is typically done by selecting products in your Shopify product catalogue.
  5. Customize the waitlist: customize the appearance and functionality of the waitlist to match your Shopify store’s branding and design. You can typically adjust colours, text, and notification templates.
  6. Customer sign up and notifications: set up the customer sign-up process. Ensure customers can easily join the waitlist by clicking a button or filling out a form. Configure the notification system to send alerts to customers when waitlisted items become available.
  7. Testing: Thoroughly test the waitlist functionality to ensure it’s working as intended. Place test orders and have friends/family join the waitlist to experience the process from a customer’s perspective.
  8. Promotion and communication: Promote the waitlist feature to your Shopify customers. Use various marketing channels, such as email, social media, and on-site banners, to inform them about the benefits of joining the waitlist.
  9. Monitor and optimize: Keep a close eye on the performance of your waitlist. Monitor customers engagement, conversion rates, and the impact on your sales. Make adjustments based on data and customer feedback.

Managing and Analyzing Shopify Waitlist Data

Monitoring waitlist sign-ups, conversions and engagement with the collected data enables businesses to make informed decisions when it comes to inventory management, product offerings and marketing.

The analysis of this info allows one to identify trends regarding high demand products, enabling companies to adjust their stock levels as well as sales approaches accordingly.

The usage of said data can facilitate more personalized email campaigns designed for particular audiences. This is really powerful when putting together a successful strategy to boost both user interaction and commercial transactions rates.

Leveraging Referral Waitlists

Referral-based waiting lists are an effective way to boost customer loyalty and engagement, while generating new leads.

By incentivizing customers for sharing your products and to invite friends to join the list, you can generate a buzz that attracts potential customers interested in what you offer.

To ensure success of this approach, strategies should be employed to motivate referrals as well as promote the referral program itself.

Integrating Waitlists with Email Marketing Campaigns

One way to engage and encourage customers which will result in more sales is by combining waitlist data with email marketing. Segmenting the subscriber list based on this information gives you an opportunity to personalize emails for your audience, using promotions or updates that are specific and relevant.

Below some of the techniques of segmentation are highlighted and how it can be used in personalized campaigns as well as providing helpful tips on best practices when connecting waitlists with email marketing initiatives, to assist with a seamless integration.

Segmentation and Personalization

Using waitlist information to segment and customize email marketing efforts is an effective way of heightening customer engagement as well as boosting sales.

By distinguishing your customers into smaller categories on the basis of their past activity, interests or place in the queue, you can refine what content reaches each group for maximum resonance. Including details such as a person’s name or favorite product preferences (based on past purchases) enhances engagement with emails resulting in great rewards.

We recommend using an email marketing software (such as Klaviyo) to collate and store all of your waitlist data. Centralized email marketing will allow you to gather and store all subscriber data in one place making it easier to analyze, segment, and use the data to tailor your email campaigns and marketing strategies effectively.

When subscribers are centralized, you can segment your email lists more accurately. This enables you to send targeted and relevant content to specific groups of subscribers, increasing engagement and conversion rates.

Centralized email marketing services often provide comprehensive analytics and reporting, giving you a unified view of email campaign performance. This can be beneficial for making data-driven decisions.

Best Practices for Email Marketing with Waitlists

For successful email marketing with waitlists, it’s essential to comply with relevant regulations such as CAN-SPAM Act and GDPR.

To help maximise sales conversions from your waiting lists, you should take steps like:

  • Sending emails/SMS about product availability or possible alternatives (if not planning to re-stock).
  • Extending promotional offers based on the data from waitlist customers’ preferences.
  • Creating personalized content that develops customer relationships.
  • A/B testing your waiting list front-end and email campaign wording for better conversion rates.

By using these best practices in conjunction with law compliance measures, you can put yourself in better stead for a successful Shopify waiting list setup.

Why you might opt for offering pre-order over using a waiting list app

What level of order intent do you want to capture?

While waiting list apps offer an avenue to notify customers when a product becomes available, the level of commitment from the customer tends to be relatively low. Enter pre-orders.

If your goal is to capture more genuine interest and initiate a transaction that remains flexible without charging upfront, offering pre-orders might be the best way forward.

How pre-orders are different?

By embracing a pre-order system that supports pay-later pre-orders, you can gauge a customer’s true intention to purchase even before a product becomes available.

This approach provides a more accurate measure of product demand compared to simple waiting list notifications. …and maybe more importantly, you’ve got everything ready to charge customers once you’re ready.

Benefits of offering pay later pre-orders

-High customer commitment; as the customer commits to the pre-order and enters their card details, they are less likely to cancel their order.

-Less risk; as customers have committed to the pre-order.

-Flexibility; as you choose when to trigger the charge.

How pre-orders work

Pay-later pre-orders allow customers to pre-order your out of stock, soon to launch, and limited availability products.

The customers pre-order and provides their personal details, and then at check-out they provide their card payment details and agree to be charged at a later date. Shopify then vaults these card details, and then at a later stage when you the store owner are ready you can trigger these deferred charges.

Notifying customers of any updates (such as shipping delays or when there card will be charged) is easy via fully customizable email campaigns offered by most apps.


In summary, a waitlist app can be an invaluable asset for Shopify store owners who are looking to collect customer feedback on out-of-stock products to improve inventory management while increasing the number of sales opportunities.

Before committing Shopify waitlist app it is important to consider the features, and ensure it will work well with your online store. You may also want to consider whether Shopify pre-orders may instead work better for your business.

Shopify Waitlist FAQs

Shopify offers many waitlist apps in the Shopify App Store that allow customers to create an alert for out-of-stock items and receive notifications when the app has replenished their favoured products. As of this writing, there isn’t a native way to do it.

Is there a waitlist option on Shopify?

To create a waiting list you will need to download a waiting list app from the app store. You will then need to setup and configure the app to start collecting data.

How do I create a waiting list?

When products are out of stock, customers can join a waitlist to be notified when they become available again. This helps the store build loyalty and satisfaction from customers.

Keeping track of demand for these particular goods also lets the retailer stock up on the right products, as they’re getting real market feedback on demand.

How can waitlists improve customer satisfaction and loyalty?

There are many factors to consider when choosing an app, some of the most factors include; customer registration, customization options, and analytics and reporti

What factors should I consider when choosing a Shopify waitlist app?

Customers join waitlists by clicking on the waitlist button and providing their details.

How can customers join waiting lists

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How Merchants Can Leverage Shopify Deferred Payment and Vaulted Card Tech

What is a deferred payment order?

Understanding how you can leverage shopify deferred payment and vaulted card tech, can be very beneficial for business.

A deferred charge/payment method, allows a customer to place a pre-order, but instead of paying for the pre-order straight away, they accept a future charge and the associated payment terms. The card details are vaulted so it can be charged at a later stage.

Traditionally customers are charged for an order at the time of placing the order; whereas with deferred charge, the merchant can choose to either charge the full payment at a later time, or to take a deposit/partial payment at the time of the order, and then bill for the remaining amount later.

Using deferred payments can be really powerful when paired with pre-orders, especially when merchants are unsure how long manufacturing/freight may take.

Customers are less likely to be frustrated by delays as they have not yet paid for the item, this gives the merchant flexibility with which dates they choose to charge and fulfil the order.

Deferred payments are also convenient when customers have a change of mind, as no refund is needed.

How do deferred payments work on Shopify?

Shopify has the ability to set up a special ‘purchase option’ for selling products. When a product is purchased with this applied, the customer won’t be charged upfront. They’ll still go through checkout and enter their card details and review the order, but will accept a future deferred payment for the product, Shopify then vaults the card details with Stripe.

To use these special ‘purchase options’ and therefore offer deferred payments you will firstly need to install a Shopify app that offers and supports deferred payments.

Our app, PreProduct offers deferred payments and can be found here. The app will generate the purchase options (the technical name in Shopify’s APIs is ‘selling plan‘) on your behalf with any discounts/deposits/terms included, and communicate this to shoppers, with the approximate soonest due date shown. This can be edited as and when needed.

Then when you are ready to bill customers you have two options. You can either trigger the deferred charge in a one-by-one fashion from your Shopify admin in the orders section (like the screenshot below).

Or you can trigger the charges via the third party app you have installed. We recommend this option as it is a quicker and a simpler process, and can be done via the app without going into Shopify admin.

You can also keep customers updated on the payment schedule, and final payment due date via the fully customisable email campaign (as well as trigger dunning flows if cards fail)

Vaulted card VS card authorization periods VS invoice/draft-order

Vaulting card details is the process used by Shopify for deferred charges. The customers place a pre-order, and are taken to the store’s checkout. They will then enter their card details and accept a future charge. Then instead of being charged for the order, Shopify will vault and store the card details, so that they can be programatically run through checkout at a later date when the store is ready.

In comparison, the process of card ‘authorization’ is where the card issuer gives approval that the customer has sufficient funds available to meet the transaction and will accept the charge if it’s made in a certain window of time. Generally most authorisation periods will last for 5 -10 days and then expire, so the store will need to capture the charge in this time period or risk it expiring.

Vaulting is great as it’s not limited to the average 5-10 day window, as the details are recorded on file before triggering the payment.

Authorization is less flexible due to this limited window in which the payment can be charged, but does have the advantage that the credit card company will check that sufficient funds are available at checkout.

However, if the vaulted card has insufficient funds or is expired, supporting apps (like PreProduct) will show the reason for the error and let you deploy a dunning flow to try and rescue the order.

Another approach which is often used by wholesale stores is Shopify “draft orders”. These aren’t technically deferred charge as they work by sending out payment invoice emails. These invoice emails contain links which customers can use to check out.

Whilst it is technically a ‘pay later’ method (as the customer can lodge an order with you and then pay later) no future transaction is captured, it’s just a way of capturing the order intent, then starting the transaction later on.

Unless you have a specific use-case that requires draft orders, we recommend using the ‘vaulted card’ method as it allows you to send the customer through checkout once at the time of order, and then capture the payment in the future at your convenience.

When to offer deferred-charge as a customer’s payment method?

For pre-order campaigns

Deferred payments can be really helpful for pre-order campaigns, and can assist you to sell more products, as customers do not need to pay the full amount upfront, and instead pay at a later date. You can either choose to collect the full amount via deferred billing at a later date, or you can use deposits and bill a portion upfront (the deposit) and then the remaining at a later date.


Made to order

When there is very high demand for a product, or the product requires extensive time to create/make, ‘made to order’ can be a great strategy; as it allows you to control the number of orders you accept and manage inventory. Deferred payments can be useful for this strategy, especially if customers may be waiting for an extended period to receive the product.


‘Try before you buy’ is a sales technique that lets customers try on or test a product before committing to purchasing. This is commonly used for larger price point products, as well as when the customer is deciding between multiple products, models or styles. Using deferred payments with this type of selling method would be be a great way to reduce risk and sell more. The customer accepts the future payment, but then is only billed if they choose to keep the item.

Which payment method is supported and what are the requirements?

Currently both Shopify payments and PayPal support deferred-charge for Shopify stores. Any type of credit card can be ‘vaulted’ as it is simply recording card details for when the payment’s due. If the card can go through checkout in a buy-now situation it should work for deferred payment (as long as you’re using Shopify payments/PayPal).

Payment methods

Shopify ‘pay later’ advantages

Shopify pay later offers many advantages for merchants as well as customers. For merchants the biggest advantage is that you can make the payment due request when it suits your business. You may have manufacturing delays, or shipping hold ups, and want to delay the payment due date.

Another advantage for merchants is that you are not limited to short 5/10/30 day periods like when using credit card authorization. As the card is instead vaulted with Shopify and the time period is not limited.

For consumers, there is a both a psychological and convenience factor, as they are able to commit to a purchase without having to give immediate payment.

Shopify ‘pay later’ disadvantages

The only real disadvantages of using Shopify ‘pay later’ is the potential for failed charges. This can happen because of expired cards or the customer not having sufficient funds in their account.

A supporting third party app (like PreProduct), should have the ability to send failed charge emails for failed deferred charge payments which will allow the buyer to rectify the payment or pay with another card.


Integrating Shopify’s Deferred Payment and Vaulted Card technology into your store offers a practical solution for managing pre-orders and cash flow, especially during uncertain manufacturing and shipping times.

By deferring payments, customers are more inclined to commit to a purchase, knowing they aren’t immediately out of pocket, particularly for items not instantly available. This method significantly reduces the administrative hassle of refunds should they change their mind. Offering a much more seamless experience than charge-upfront pre-orders.

Overall, Shopify deferred payment provides merchants increased flexibility in managing revenue streams while maintaining customer satisfaction and trust.

Shopify Deferred Payment Method FAQ

Yes if you use a 3rd party app (like PreProduct) with a payment provider (like PayPal or Shopify Payments) that supports deferred payments, you are able to delay charging until a later time.

Can you delay payment on Shopify?

To allow customers to pay later on Shopify, you can use deferred charge via a 3rd party app. The customer will place the pre-order, no money is exchanged immediately, and then when you are ready to charge, you will trigger the deferred charge.

How do I allow customers to pay later on Shopify?

Currently Shopify Payments and PayPal are supported on Shopify for deferred charge, so you could use PayPal instead.

What happens if I don’t use Shopify payments?

You trigger the deferred payment when you are ready to charge, Shopify will then use vaulted card details and charge the consumer for the remaining amount (if using a deposit) or the full amount (if 100% charge later).

How does pre-order payment work?

Yes. Subscriptions use periodically trigger deferred charges on the customers card; Typically right before the due item is set to be fulfilled.

Do subscriptions use deferred payments?

Some Shopify pre-orders apps (like PreProduct) generate a customer portal where shoppers can check the payment status of their pre-order’s deferred payments and when it is expected to ship.

How can customers check on their deferred payments?

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Setting up Shopify back in stock notifications


Shopify back-in-stock notifications can play a crucial role in enhancing the customer experience and driving Shopify sales for eCommerce businesses.

The basic premise of back in stock notifications, is that customers who visit a product page displaying a sold out product or a product that is currently unavailable have the option to provide their email address to receive a back in stock alert.

Some of the benefits of setting up Shopify back in stock notifications includes; customer engagement and retention, increase customer satisfaction, maximise sales opportunities to recover lost sales, and improve inventory management.

How back-in-stock notifications work

Back-in-stock notifications are alerts/messages sent to customers who have expressed interest in a product that was previously out of stock or not yet available but has now become available on a Shopify store.

Below is how the basic process typically works:

-The store sets up a back in stock flow on their website

-A customer expresses interest; A customer visits a product page on a Shopify stores website and finds that the desired item is out of stock or currently not available.

-The customer can then choose to opt in for restock alerts, by providing their email address/phone number through an on-page widget. This is typically a ‘back in stock’ button that launches a pop-up modal to capture the customer details.

Opting in to back-in-stock notifications

-When the product is restocked and becomes available again, the Shopify store will automatically send a notification (via email, SMS, or app notification) to all the customers who signed up for back in stock alerts for that specific product.

-Once notified, the customer can click on the link provided which will take them directly to the product page to make a purchase. This simplifies the buying process for the customer and can lead to quicker sales.

Why a stock alert app brings customers back to your store

Customers who have signed up to be notified of restock alerts, have already expressed that they are interested in the product. You can imagine how much better qualified a back-in-stock email list would be when compared to most email campaigns.

Sending restock alerts to customers reignites their interest and as they have already previously missed out they will be even more driven to quickly purchase the product.

The back in stock notification not only drives sales but also directs traffic back to your eCommerce site. Customers receiving back-in-stock emails are likely to browse other products as well and potentially make additional purchases during their visit to your shop.

Setting up a back-in-stock Shopify app

Choosing a back-in-stock app

When choosing a back-in-stock app for your eCommerce website, there are several key factors to consider to ensure that the app you select best suits your business goals. Here are important aspects to look for:

Ease of Use and Integration:

The app should be relatively user-friendly to use and set up, you also want it to integrate seamlessly with your site theme, as well as have a great support team. An app that you can comfortably use and set up means you’ll actually use it. You can always look into more feature-rich apps, once you’re ready.

Customization and Branding:

Find an app that allows customization to match your brand’s look-and-feel. Use the app’s interface to customize notification templates, colors, etc to ensure a cohesive brand identity.

Notification Channels:

You will need to check the notification channels the app supports, such as email, SMS, push notifications, or other messaging apps and ensure that the app supports the channels preferred by your target audience for the most effective communication.

Adding the “notify me” button to your shopify theme

You’ll need to incorporate a code snippet/block into your Shopify theme that triggers the automatic display of a “Notify Me When Available” button whenever products are no longer in stock. Most apps will now use Store 2.0 block that you drag from the “Online Store -> “Shopify Customizer”. But if you are are not on a 2.0 Shopify theme, you will need to add a code snippet.

After you have added the code snippet/block, shoppers browsing an out-of-stock/unavailable a product will see a “Notify Me When Available” button appear directly next to, or below, the “Sold Out” button. It is important to ensure the correct placement and visibility of the “Notify Me When Available” button, as this will encourage customers to register their interest.

When shoppers clicks the “Notify Me” button, a pop up form will appear that allows shoppers to enter their email to be notified when the item is restocked or available.

Once this form is submitted by shoppers, a Subscribed to Back In Stock event will be tracked on the shoppers profile

Customising the back-in-stock button and form for your store

The “Notify Me When Available” button and form should allow a lot of customization, depending which app you choose. Klaviyo for examples allows you to change the colors, fonts, text, and other elements according to the style of your online store and your design preferences.

Setting up the back-in-stock notifications email/text flow

Creating effective back in stock alert email notifications is essential to captivate customers and motivate them to make a purchase. Services like Klaviyo can useful as they allow you to automate the email flows.

Below are some of the best practices to utilise when writing back in stock alert emails.

Clear and Compelling Subject Line:

Grab attention with a clear and engaging subject line that conveys the purpose of the email


Address the recipient by their name to create a sense of personal connection and make the email feel more tailored to their preferences.

Announce Product Availability:

Clearly state that the desired product is back in stock, setting the tone for the rest of the email.

Include a Clear Call-to-Action (CTA):

Use a prominent and compelling CTA, such as “Shop Now” or “Grab Yours Today,” that directs customers to the product page to make a purchase.

Offer Limited-Time Incentives:

Encourage immediate action by offering limited-time promotions, discounts, or free shipping to incentivize purchases.

Create a Sense of Urgency:

Use language that creates a sense of urgency, encouraging customers to act quickly before the product runs out of stock again or the pre-order discount stops being available.

monitoring analytics and reporting

Many Shopify apps that offer back-in-stock notifications, allow you to monitor the performance of your various flows and product pages. It’s best practise to monitor these analytics and optimise your front-end wording and email campaigns appropriately. Consider split tests with something like Klaviyo’s AB testing.

Why you might use a pre-order app instead

what level of order intent do you want to capture?

Sending a back in stock notification to customers is very much worthwhile, however a customer is giving quite a low level of commitment. There is another option however… pre-orders.

If you want to ensure you’re capturing genuine interest, as well as start a transaction in a way which is still flexible and without any money charged upfront. Pre-orders can be a great way to level up your back-in-stock alerts.

By using a pre-order system that supports pay-later pre-orders, you can tap into a customer’s willingness to commit to a purchase even before an item is restocked. This offers a clearer indication of product demand than mere stock notifications.

pre-orders that allow you to charge later

Shopify capture only pre-orders, allow you to capture a customer’s intent to pre-order. When you are ready to finalise the pre-order and collect payment, you send out payment links to customers, and this allows them to pay for their pre-order through your online store.

Shopify charge later pre-orders are similar to ‘capture only’ pre-orders in that the customer pays for the product at a later time (whenever suits the store owner). However, the customer goes through the Shopify checkout at the time of pre-order and enters their card details and agrees to a deferred charge. Shopify vaults these card details and charges when the store owner triggers the charge.

Setting up a pre-order app in the place of back in stock notifications

We’ll use PreProduct in this example, although other pre-sale apps may support similar functionality.

  1. Install PreProduct from the Shopify App Store
  2. Add PreProduct’s block to your theme’s product pages via the Shopify Customize editor
  3. Visit PreProduct’s “Templates” screen and set the eligibility conditions for which products should show be allowed to show the back-in-stock button. Make sure to choose capture-only or charge-later when specifying the pre-order listing settings.
  4. Finally, turn on the listing manager automation from PreProduct’s “Setup” -> “Automations” screen, so that eligible out of stock products will be pre-sold.

The Listing manager gets the chance to run every time a product has a change in Shopify (e.g. a change in stock level), but as soon as this first change happens, eligible products will stay in sync.

Back in stock app Shopify FAQ

Back-in-stock email subject lines should be; Clear and to the point so that customers immediately understand what the email is about, attention-grabbing so that customers want to open and read it and urgent so it is opened and customers act fast to purchase.

How to write back in stock email subject lines?

Yes, you should definitely customize your back-in-stock emails/messages. Personalized emails are more likely to be opened and clicked on than generic emails.

Should you customise back in stock emails?

Both back in stock notifications and pre-orders can both be beneficial for online stores. Back in stock notifications can be great when you have products that regularly go in and out of stock, so customers can be notified as soon as they are back in stock, and allow you to sell more items. Pre-orders allow you to take the order even when the product is out of stock and does not rely on the customer purchasing the product once back in stock after receiving the notification.

Should you set up back in stock notifications or use a pre-order app?

You will need to download a back in stock app from the Shopify app store, and then configure it in your Shopify store.

How do I set up back in stock alerts on Shopify?

“Back in stock” refers to a situation where a product that was previously out of stock or unavailable for purchase is once again available for purchase. It indicates that the product is available again and is ready for customers to buy.

What is the meaning of back in stock?

The “back in stock” strategy involves strategies used by businesses to effectively manage and capitalize on the restocking of products that were previously unavailable. This approach is crucial for maximizing sales.

What is the back in stock strategy?

It’s up to you to add and remove stock in the Shopify product admin. As customers purchase items, the stock level will naturally decrement. Once you have new stock arrive on premise, you can go into Shopify’s product admin and increase the inventory level.

How do you know if something is back in stock?

This is commonly referred to as a “back in stock alerts” or “stock notifications” app. There are many options available on the Shopify app store.

What is the app that tells you when something is in stock?

Eliza Wegener

Co-founder @PreProduct

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How to set up pre-orders on Shopify

1. Introduction

Pre-orders can be a great tool for your online store, with potential to increase hype around new releases whilst solving your cash flow problems. It’s beneficial to understand how to set up pre-orders on Shopify.

What is a pre-order?

A pre-order is where customers can place orders for products or services before they become available for general sale. Essentially, customers are buying an item before it is physically in stock or released.

There are several benefits to setting up pre-orders:

Pre-orders can provide insight for Shopify stores about the demand for their products.

By seeing how many people are pre-ordering an item, stores can adjust their production and inventory management to meet demand. This can help them avoid overproduction, which can lead to excess inventory and financial losses. If you plan to use pre-orders for probing future demand, we recommend capture-only or charge-later pre-orders, that way customers aren’t being charged anything until you’re comfortable moving forwards.

Pre-orders can generate buzz and excitement for a product before its release.

By allowing customers to pre-order, store owners can boost hype and create a sense of exclusivity around new releases. It also gives you an opportunity to launch twice in a way, once for the pre-order release and once again when the product arrives and you start taking regular buy-now orders.

Pre-orders can boost your online store cashflow, as they can capture revenue upfront.

When customers pre-order products, they typically pay the full price or a deposit at the time of the order, which provides stores with a cash flow boost before the product is even released. This can be especially helpful for small businesses or startups that may not have access to significant capital or financing (although financing options for small e-comm brands is in improving!) .

2. Set up pre-orders on Shopify

Does my Shopify store support pre-orders?

All Shopify stores are capable of supporting pre-orders, however not all payment processors support deferred-charge pre-orders. Currently both Shopify Payments and PaPal are supported, however you will run into issues when using an unsupported third party payment gateway or even Shop Pay.

That said, Shopify will automatically hide any unsupported payment providers from your checkout. So, as long as you have Shopify Payments or PayPal enabled, you’re good to go and move forward to set up pre-orders on Shopify.

Installing a Pre-order App

To get started and set up pre-orders on Shopify, visit the Shopify App Store and search for “pre-order”, then select the app you wish to install.

Once you have located the app, click on it to access the app listing page, and then select the “Add app” option.

To grant the app access to your Shopify admin account, click “Install app” and authorize its use.

Integrating the App with Your Storefront

Shopify 1.0

If your Shopify theme is Shopify “store 1.0” and you’re not comfortable with customising the code of your product template, then I’d recommend contacting the app developer, as they’ll need to edit code to add their snippet to your online store.

Generally the process is to locate the Shopify theme file containing the “buy” button and insert the app’s customized code beneath the {% endform %} liquid tag. This will let the app’s script determine which product the pre-order button should apply for (if any) when running on that page.

Keep in mind that the file name may differ, but commonly it will be one of: product-template.liquid, product-form.liquid, or product-main.liquid, among others. (Typically in your ‘sections’ or ‘snippets’ folder)

*We also recommend saving your theme file locally first, incase of any mistakes. That way you have a backup if anything goes wrong, as well as being able to take advantage of powerful code editor ‘file find’ tools like ‘find in project’.

Shopify 2.0

With the introduction of Shopify 2.0, app blocks can now seamlessly integrate into the Shopify admin’s drag-and-drop theme customizer, making it much easier to set up pre-orders on Shopify. (‘app block’ is effectively the same as a ‘snippet’ in this context)

App blocks streamline the product pre-order template installation process, as well as automatically removing themselves if you uninstall the app.

Listing Pre-orders on Shopify

Once you’ve completed the above steps to integrate the app with your Shopify storefront, you can now start pre-selling!

Begin by listing a product in your selected pre-order app. Most if not all pre-order apps sit on top of your existing Shopify product listings. Once listed in the app, the pre-order product page’s cart button text should be replaced with a pre-order version, accompanied by any other front-end additional information, i.e. special pre-order messaging.

You will need to decide which type of pre-order to use, generally depending on the payment settings they use. The general pre-order types are:

  • Charge upfront pre-order – 100% charged upfront (Most apps will offer this).
  • Charge Later pre-orders – 100% charged later when you trigger the charge.
  • Deposit-based pre-orders – A percentage paid upfront, with the outstanding charged later.
  • Capture-only pre-orders – A payment link is sent once you’re ready to send customers through your payment gateway.

Different apps may support or not support any of the above, so it’s important to research this ahead of installing (for example, PreProduct’s list is here).

What kind of pre-order should you use?

pros, and, cons

The below is just a set of rough guidelines from what I’ve seen running a pre-order solution over the years.

Charge upfront pre-orders are useful if you need the cash flow upfront, and appropriate if you have a good idea of when the pre-order items will be ready for shipping. Charging upfront also comes with a higher commitment from customers, over something like capture-only or notify-me-when-in-stock.

Charge upfront may not be the best type of pre-order if you’re worried about manufacturing delays or freight issues. Customers could become frustrated if they’ve fully paid, but then have unexpected delays receiving the product.

Charge later pre-orders can be one of the better choices when you’re not sure how long manufacturing may take, or when there is some uncertainty around production and supply chain. As customers will be less inclined to be annoyed by delays when they haven’t parted with any money yet. It’s still important to keep customers informed of delays though.

Charge later is also convenient if customers have a change of mind, whilst waiting for the out of stock product to come in; because no refund is needed, the pre-order can just be cancelled (without any bank transaction started/cancellation needed).

Deposit-based pre-orders is a good alternative that sits between charge upfront pre-order and charge later pre-order. This type of pre-order shows commitment from customers, but also means customers do not need to pay for the full product upfront, which can help increase pre-order sales by lowering the price to buy for customers.

Capture-only pre-orders can be a great pre-order option when you need to gauge interest. They require the least amount of commitment from both the buyers and shop owners. Similar to a back-in-stock flow, customer’s only go through checkout once the product’s available and can be imminently shipped.

Deciding on a pre-order shipping statment

When creating a pre-order listing, you will also need to set a shipping statement. This could be in a period of days or fixed phrase (ie ‘Next Summer’). The balance here is that a pre-order listing with too vague a shipping statement can deter potential buyers, however an exact shipping statement with a much longer duration can also detract from the willingness to buy.

At PreProduct, generally we advise merchants to keep it specific when they can. With the caveat that you should go with what’s comfortable and if that’s not committing to an exact date, then that’s a completely sensible decision. You should also bear in mind that the communicated shipping statement can be changed at any point (well in a lot of apps at least).

Choosing an exact pre-order shipping statement

Using a less specific pre-order shipping statement

Shopify product settings

The product/variant section of the Shopify admin dashboard contains an option to enable the ‘continue selling when out of stock’ feature. This setting is crucial when utilising pre-orders and has two important purposes:

  1. If a product has zero stock and the box is unchecked, customers will not be able to purchase it. However, if the box is checked, the product can still pass through the checkout, whatever the inventory level. Some apps (eg PreProduct) automatically manage this box, when creating/finishing a pre-order listing.
  2. Furthermore, most Shopify themes display an ‘out of stock’ message when a product/variant has zero stock and the box is un-ticked. Ensuring the ‘continue selling when out of stock’ box is ticked will prevent this message from being displayed.

3. Offering Discounts on Pre-orders

Basic Discount Setup

If you’re not using a pre-order app, you can set up a discount in any theme by altering the ‘Price’ and ‘Compare at Price’ in the Shopify product admin. The ‘Compare at Price’ is the original price and the ‘Price’ is the discounted price. This means the Shopify will know that there is a discount and your theme will most likely reflect this on your front-end. 

Purchase Options Discounts

For pre-order listings that use purchase options (in PreProduct’s case, this is every kind apart from capture-only listings), rather than altering the price of the product directly on Shopify, the discount is applied at the pre-order listing and order level.

This means that the discount is fixed for any pre-orders already captured, but if you decide to change the discount for future pre-orders, they’ll have the updated subtraction applied. This is great, as you don’t need to worry about the price change; and furthermore, can even change the Shopify product price without impacting previous pre-orders.

With early bird discounts, you can enable customers to commit to a purchase early on and capture more sales, this is due to a created sense of exclusivity and urgency. Tapping into the classic psychology of ‘wanting more for less’ and FOMO.

Letting early adopters get in early can boost customer loyalty, and rewarding these customers with a discount can boost this dynamic even more so.

4. Setting up pre-orders on Shopify to use deposits

Creating Deposit-based pre-orders

When you set up pre-orders on Shopify and create a listing, there should be an option to choose whether to capture deposits/partial payments for pre-order listings in supporting deposit pre-order apps.

When creating a pre-order listing, you will just need to select the deposit type: fixed amount or percentage. This will be communicated on the product and cart pages, as well as next to the payment authorization section of the checkout.

How do deposit pre-orders work?

Pre-order listings that use deposits will communicate to customers the price and terms of the order before they click the pre-order cart button. They’ll then be directed through your usual checkout process, however there will be details of the deposit price, the outstanding price, as well as when the merchant plans to charge it. Then once you’re ready to trigger the outstanding payment, you can trigger the charge via your pre-order app. Usually this is is powered by vaulted credit card technology so no further action is needed from the customer.

Using deposits can be beneficial as they require customers to commit a portion of the pre-order payments upfront, demonstrating a genuine interest and commitment to purchasing the product.

Deposits provide an immediate influx of cash for the business, which can be crucial for covering production costs, marketing efforts, or other expenses related to fulfilling pre-orders. It’s completely up to you whether you implement a non-refundable deposit policy.

Charging Tax and Shipping Fees

When using deposit based pre-orders, both shipping and taxes will be charged in the final outstanding amount, not in the deposit amount. Your existing tax and shipping profiles will be respected.

5. Summary and Conclusion

In summary, to use and set up pre-orders on Shopify offers several powerful advantages for ecommerce stores.

  • They provide valuable insight into product demand for pre-order products, enabling stores to predict inventory amount and avoid overproduction.
  • Pre-orders generate anticipation for a product, improving hype for your future releases.
  • Lastly, pre-orders can generate upfront revenue, providing cash flow before product release, something that ecommerce companies of all sizes can get excited about.

If you are interested in giving pre-orders on Shopify a go and experiencing some of these benefits I mentioned above, we’d love you to start a free trial of PreProduct today.

Get the Shopify App

Eliza Wegener

Co-founder @PreProduct

Pre-sell With PreProduct

7 day free trial with all plans

Unbounce Pre-orders

1. Unbounce pre-orders with Shopify & PreProduct

Unbounce offers a super powerful and intuitive way to create and manage landing pages for new product launches.
However, what if you wanted to start taking pre-orders from one of your landing pages?

For selling physical products, Shopify has been establishing itself as a market leader for quite some time now.
PreProduct is a pre-order app that plugs into Shopify and enables you to launch new products via different kinds of pre-sale.
In the below guide, I’ll show you a quick and easy way to set up Unbounce pre-orders.

Although ordinarily confined to the Shopify store itself, in this guide I’ll show you how to run PreProduct in a ‘headless’ way from your Unbounce page. Enabling easy communication and capture of Shopify / Unbounce pre-orders.
Essentially you’ll be adding a ‘custom HTML block’ to your Unbounce landing page and populating it with a couple of lines of code that PreProduct will automatically generate for you.

Each of the below steps is fairly straightforward, but feel free to get in touch if you run into any issues.
I’ve also recorded a quick video here in case that’s your preferred tutorial format.


*Each of the above apps have fully functional free trials that you can take advantage of.

2. Step-by-step guide


  • For this tutorial we’ll be using Unbounce’s classic builder. If you don’t have an existing page set up, click the ‘create new’ button in the top right corner of Unbounce.
stage 1


  • Now click on the triple-dot symbol to the far right of your page’s card area. Then click ‘Edit champion variant’.
stage 2


  • You’ll now be taken to your page’s editor. Click and drag the ‘custom HTML’ block from the left-side menu onto the page.
    You should be greeted by a text input modal.
stage 3


  • Now we just need to generate a snippet in PreProduct to paste into the modal. Start by opening up PreProduct.


  • If you haven’t already created a pre-order listing in PreProduct, create one now by clicking the ‘New listing’ menu item.
    Then select it from the main dashboard.


  • Now click the ‘Generate headless code’ button on the left-hand side of the dashboard. A modal should pop up with your snippet in a grey text area. Highlight and copy the snippet.


  • Now, back in Unbounce; paste the snippet into the ‘custom HTML code’ modal and click ‘save code’. You can now position the block where you’d like on the page. We generally recommend making the block no smaller than 40% of the desktop page width. Then on mobile, it should be used at around 100% width.
stage 7
stage 7.5


  • The pre-order front-end won’t show properly until you click ‘preview’. Let’s do that now. You should see the pre-order button appear, along with an on-page pre-order cart when clicked. Listing details and styling are controlled from within PreProduct’s dashboard.
stage 8

3. Summary

Congratulations, you’ve just enabled Unbounce pre-orders  from your landing page. Through PreProduct, you’ll now be able to take advantage of Unbounce’s optimisation and design, alongside Shopify’s powerful e-commerce engine.

Pre-orders will flow from your Unbounce page into PreProduct and then at some point, Shopify. Depending on the kind of pre-order listing: ‘pay later’, ‘deposit-based’, or ‘pay now’.
For example; pay later’ pre-orders will just be in PreProduct until you send out payment link emails. Where as ‘pay now’ pre-orders will redirect to your Shopify checkout straight away and flow directly into the Shopify order system. 

What kind of pre-order listing to choose is a whole other article in itself. However, ‘time until ship’ is a good point to benchmark against. Is your new product going to be in customer’s hands next month? Well ‘pay now’ pre-orders is probably a good fit.
Or is it more like 6 months with potential delays? Then pay later or deposit-based pre-orders will give you more flexibility and customer goodwill.

Feel free to reach out with any questions or to let us know how your pre-order campaign is going.
We’re always happy to talk ‘pre-orders’ and ‘new product launches’.

Pre-sell With PreProduct

7 day free trial with all plans