Haven’t upgraded to Shopify OS 2.0 yet?

Here’s everything you need to know.

Shopify 2.0 themes were launched all the way back in July 2021, but we’re still seeing many merchants come to us feeling unsure about the benefits of upgrading. Spoiler alert, there are many of them, primarily centred around flexibility in tailoring the customer journey to reflect your brand. So let’s get into it…

Greater flexibility of content

Up until the launch of Shopify OS 2.0, merchants were fairly limited in how they could use content as a tool for representing their brand on Shopify, with the use of sections being limited to only the home page. That didn’t mean it was impossible – custom development and some third-party apps would allow for use of blocks on content pages – but it certainly wasn’t as easy as it could’ve been.

That all changes with OS 2.0. Now as standard, merchants can add sections to all pages, including product pages, allowing you to tailor your end to end purchase experience to fully represent your brand. 

Say you want to add a promotion banner that you have on your homepage to the bottom of a product page. A Shopify OS 2.0 theme editor will simply allow you to drag in the block just as you did on the homepage. Flexibility is key here, and the possibilities of how this feature can be used to benefit your store and customer experience are endless. 

Closer Integration of apps with themes

Another of the useful features released with OS 2.0 is the ability to directly pull in app blocks and snippets into your theme. Now for example, you can simply pull in a subscription or reviews snippet just as you would a rich content block. This is done directly from the theme customiser, all without having to touch the code.

Computer screen with Butlers homepage

Site Speed Benefits

This closer integration of apps also has the potential to have a positive effect on site speed. Pre-2.0, apps would mostly change the appearance of your frontend using JavaScript. As JavaScript runs on your device as the page attempts to load, this previously meant that adding apps would generally mean a drag on performance. 

Thankfully, OS 2.0 enables app developers to leverage Shopify’s Liquid code to display on your website, and as Liquid runs on Shopify servers rather than users devices, apps now have less negative impact on site speed.

Also, while this won’t be the case for all themes, Shopify’s new default 2.0 theme ‘Dawn’ is 35% faster than the platform’s previous version, ‘Debut’. 

Improvements to Metafields 

Shopify OS 2.0 gives merchants access to native metafields, meaning custom fields can easily be added to any part of your site without having to hardcode or rely on apps. 

What does this mean for merchants? Well, for one, it’ll significantly increase flexibility to display data specific to your brand. For example with product metafields, you’ll now be able to easily add any custom content you need to the product page, such as a size chart or an ingredients list. 

You can also target your metafields using liquid code, meaning you could show metafield content only when certain conditions are met. For example, you could overlay a free shipping icon on product images if a product was over a certain value. 

Ready to upgrade?

By the end of the 2021, Shopify stated that all themes in their Theme Store and apps in their App Store should be upgraded to use the new 2.0 infrastructure. If you’re still on a legacy theme, it’ll still continue to work beyond this cut off, but you won’t have access to new Online Store 2.0 features through the theme editor until making the upgrade. 

As mentioned in this article, the benefits of upgrading are numerous, and as shoppers become more and more accustomed to the UX advantages 2.0 stores provide, the case for upgrading only becomes stronger. 

Farrows are a Shopify Partner with heaps of experience migrating Shopify and Shopify Plus merchants to Online Store 2.0 themes.  If you’re ready to make the leap to 2.0, get in touch with a Farrows Shopify expert today. 

Dave Lincoln, Head of Digital

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