The landscape of eCommerce is always changing, and a smart business makes sure to stay on top of each new development. Since most of your ability to adapt is dependent on the capabilities of your eCommerce software, it's vital to use a platform that keeps up with the times. That's why, at Shift4Shop, we work constantly to bring you all the newest tools, integrations, and features as soon as possible. When you thrive, so do we!
Shift4Shop Version 12 is the latest big upgrade to our eCommerce software, and we're excited to share it with you. Our mission is always to bring you every possible advantage to help you grow your business, and this new update aligns with that goal.
Let's take a look at what's new in Shift4Shop.
Facebook Commerce Integration
Facebook Commerce is Facebook's centralized system for managing your catalog and advertising on both Facebook and Instagram. Our Facebook Commerce integration is a new module, available on all plans, that replaces our old Facebook Ads integration.
Our Facebook Commerce integration allows full synchronization between your Facebook Shop and your Shift4Shop store. You can upload your products to Facebook, complete with their images and information, and process all Facebook orders through Shift4Shop. Your products on Facebook and in your Shift4Shop store will remain synchronized.
Shoppers on Facebook will have an easier time discovering your products, thanks to category data and detailed product attributes. Your products will appear in more search results on Facebook!
Once your products are on Facebook you've also taken the first step toward selling on Instagram. You'll receive the same benefits, including greater brand visibility, and can also sell items directly from your Instagram posts. With Instagram's Shoppable Posts, you're able to tag any items featured in the post to allow customers to purchase them instantly.
You can set up your Shift4Shop Facebook Commerce integration through an easy onboarding process described in our Knowledgebase.
Facebook Ads Manager
Our new, built-in Facebook Ads Manager provides a streamlined method for creating, managing, and tracking your Facebook Ads from within your Shift4Shop Online Store Manager. After you’ve completed the Facebook Commerce onboarding process, you can activate the Facebook Ads Manager and start controlling your Facebook Ads without having to leave your Shift4Shop dashboard.
From here, you’ll be able to set up your Facebook Ads using the same ad creation interface from Facebook itself, only accessed through Shift4Shop. You can build, preview, and allocate a budget for your ads as well as track their progress.
By consolidating your Facebook Ad management into Shift4Shop, you can save even more time by further reducing the number of individual places you need to log in for managing different aspects of your eCommerce business.
Google Analytics Version 4
Google Analytics is an essential tool for analyzing your website traffic and discovering more about your customers — information you can then act on to improve your reach and conversions. Google Analytics V4 is the newest version of Google Analytics and brings even more enhancements to its users, including AI-based insights that help you predict customer behavior.
One of the most interesting features of Google Analytics V4 is its usage of machine learning, which works to improve the functions of the AI itself in order to make the AI "smarter." Not only does this aid in its other uses (like identifying trends right away), it also helps form a more complete picture of your customer base, without needing to rely on cookies. The lack of dependence on cookies means Google Analytics V4 is more compatible with changing privacy regulations.
We've written an in-depth article on Google Analytics V4, which we recommend you check out for more information.
Shift4 Payments Transaction Status Dashboard
The Transaction Status Dashboard is a new tool for merchants using Shift4 Payments. It allows full visibility and management of payment transactions within the Shift4Shop Online Store Manager. This dashboard provides detailed information about all transactions in a convenient location to save time and effort.
All transaction types are listed, including Authorization, Sales, Capture, Fraud Reject, and Refunded. You can view each transaction and perform any necessary actions — such as whitelisting a fraud-rejected transaction you know is actually legitimate, or rejecting a transaction if you have reason to do so. To make it easier to find the transactions you're interested in viewing, you can filter the entire list by date range, transaction type, or card type used. Transactions can also be printed, exported to a CSV file, or saved as a PDF. You are also able to view the time a transaction updated to its most recent status, shown in your own time zone.
This new dashboard can be found in Reports > Shift4 Payments in your Shift4Shop Online Store Manager. Check out this Knowledgebase article for more information.
Shift4 Payments Batch and Deposit Reports
In addition to the Transaction Status Dashboard described above, the Shift4 Payments Reports in your Shift4Shop Online Store Manager also include reports on Batches and Deposits.
The Batch Summary Report provides complete transaction records in one place, sorted by batch, and filterable by date presets and ranges. Clicking any batch opens a Batch Detail page with more information about the individual transactions within that batch, including batch date, batch ID, total amount, total per card type, and more. The Batch Summary Report can also be printed or exported to CSV.
The Deposit Report provides a complete record of deposits to your business’s associated bank account within a timeframe you specify. This report includes the banking information, amount, and batch and deposit dates for each deposit.
Shift4 Payments Chargeback Reports
If your online store receives any chargebacks (a situation in which a customer files for a refund through their credit card provider), you can see a full record of them in this report. With Version 12, you are also able to export this report into a CSV file.
View Declined Credit Card Transactions
Sometimes a customer’s order doesn’t go through because their credit card was declined. There are many reasons a transaction can be declined, but customers are often not sure why. The problem could be with the information they entered, the card itself, your store’s checkout, or something else. Customers will often contact a business when they are trying to make a purchase but have problems such as a declined transaction.
In Shift4Shop Version 12, merchants can see the declined transaction and its reason directly on the customer’s Not Completed Order record. This makes customer service much easier, since you can directly explain to the customer why their card was declined and work together to decide on a solution — e.g. try again with the same card, use a different card, or whatever else works.
Accept Cryptocurrency with BitPay
Cryptocurrency continues to grow in popularity, and if you want to accept crypto payments on your online store, you’re in luck! Shift4Shop’s new BitPay integration can have you accepting crypto payments in no time. BitPay pays out quickly through your method of choice (e.g. deposits of fiat currency into your bank account), and protects you from fluctuations in cryptocurrency values. It’s an easy, fast, reliable way to accept Bitcoin and other types of cryptocurrency on your eCommerce website.
New Integrations in Shift4 Payments
Shift4Shop Version 12 includes some new integrations to further improve the payment processing experience:
- The Shift4 i4Go Payment Gateway is an onboarding improvement that makes it even faster and more convenient for new merchants to get their online store connected with Shift4 Payments.
- Apple Pay and Google Pay are now directly integrated with Shift4 Payments for usage on Shift4Shop stores, rather than requiring merchants using Shift4 Payments to use a separate integration.
Hosted Invoice Page
In some circumstances, a business may want to provide a customer with an invoice payment page rather than having them place a regular order. Businesses often need to create invoices for custom work or may simply prefer to use invoices to negotiate pricing.
Shift4Shop's Hosted Invoice feature (formerly Hosted Payments Page) lets you securely collect single or recurring payment from your customers without additional setup, and without sending them through the typical checkout process. Your customers can view the details of their order, amounts, and statuses on their invoice, and can pay it right on your website using any of your enabled payment methods. Customers can also download the invoice and receipt as PDFs.
In Shift4Shop Version 12, Hosted Invoices now run through Shift4 Payments for merchants who are using it, rather than the previous processor.
Shift4 Payments Fraud Protection with Kount
Kount is an industry-leading fraud prevention solution that uses AI-based automation to identify fraudulent transactions before they can harm your business. It can recognize and stop both criminal fraud (such as the use of stolen credit cards) and "friendly fraud" (which is the occasion when a customer files an illegitimate chargeback despite having received their order). Kount also includes methods to identify good customers and provide them with a better shopping experience, and works in the background to avoid adding friction to your checkout. Thanks to its AI and built-in systems, Kount has up to 70% fewer false positives than any other anti-fraud tool.
Kount and Shift4 Payments have teamed up to include Kount's Portfolio solution automatically for merchants using Shift4 Payments. So, Shift4 Payments merchants will now also have Kount on their side!
ADA Compliant eCommerce Website Themes
Web design is always a crucial part of growing your brand. A good website helps you stand out from the crowd and helps customers remember you. But your website also needs to be easy to use and understand. At Shift4Shop, we've always emphasized user experience (UX) as central to our website templates, so merchants can provide a smooth and appealing shopping experience to their customers. But recently, we've taken it a step further to bring you ADA compliance.
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) specifies certain measures a business needs to take in order to be accessible to people with disabilities. A brick-and-mortar business, for example, may need to install a wheelchair ramp to become accessible. For websites, the ADA focuses on accessibility for people with impaired vision or related difficulty using an online store. So, to meet the standards set by the ADA, we've overhauled all Shift4Shop eCommerce themes for better functionality with screen-reader programs (text to speech), appropriate font sizes, balanced color contrasts, and more.
The end result of this overhaul is that all Shift4Shop themes are now ADA compliant right out of the box, with no additional editing needed before your website meets these important standards. For a more in-depth look, check out our article on ADA-compliant websites.
All our themes are still 100% free and just as appealing to visitors without disabilities. You can still customize your theme as well, but keep in mind that certain changes could harm your ADA compliance (e.g. making the font too small). Use the article we linked above as a reference to avoid this problem.
New Website Templates for Restaurants
While restaurants had already been expanding into services like delivery and curbside pickup, the COVID-19 pandemic caused many more restaurants to look into eCommerce. In response to this increase in demand, we've built and released a large variety of new templates for restaurant websites. These themes widen the selection for restaurants that want to get their websites up and running quickly. Just like all our other themes, they are fully customizable and available at no cost.
Upgraded Page Editor
Our Page Editor makes it easy to create content pages for your website, and in Version 12, we’ve made it even better! We’ve improved upon the built-in tools and expanded its functionality so you can use it to design more of the different page types on your website. We’ll be continuing to upgrade and fine-tune this awesome design tool, so you can expect it to get even better in the future.
Favicon Creator and Manager
A favicon is an important part of your online store’s branding, so we’ve made it easier to create a favicon and add it to your website. You can now upload a favicon image in Store Settings where you upload your logo. You can browse to an existing favicon image (.ico format) on your computer, or go straight to our Favicon Maker to create the image in the proper format. You can also preview your new favicon before setting it live, and replace it at any point if you so choose.
Website Checkout Upgrades
Shift4Shop Version 12 includes some checkout upgrades geared toward improving user experience, giving store owners more control, and reducing the possibility for errors.
- You can now hide shipping information from your store's checkout, which some businesses prefer to do if they have no need for shipping — for example, they sell only digital goods, or only provide services, without physical products ever being shipped. This is as simple as changing a setting within your Shift4Shop Online Store Manager. Check out this Knowledgebase article for more information and instructions.
- If you offer free shipping on your store, shipping will now display as “FREE” at checkout rather than “$0.00” and you can also change the wording within the Store Language section.
- You can now hide the Comments field from checkout. Shift4Shop allows both customers and admins to comment on orders — customers can leave special instructions, while admins can use the internal commenting system to help eliminate any confusion about orders in progress. However, not every merchant wants to accept comments from their customers, so you can remove the Comments box to further customize your checkout.
- Built-in free Address Validation for U.S. addresses is also included. Fixing incorrect addresses in eCommerce reduces shipping costs, improves customer satisfaction, and saves time for your business.
- We’ve also improved the way checkout handles ZIP codes to ensure correct shipping rates appear regardless of whether the customer types a 5-digit or full 9-digit ZIP code (or adds it through address autofill), and regardless of whether the customer enters a dash in the ZIP or simply a string of numbers.
- Google Address Autofill is now a standard setting for checkout.
Sell Your Products on WordPress
Shift4Shop may be the best eCommerce platform, but WordPress is by far the most popular CMS (Content Management System) for many types of websites, whether or not they focus on blogging. Now, you can get the best of both worlds with our updated WordPress plugin.
Our WordPress plugin allows you to embed products right on any page of your WordPress site, add them to a sidebar, or both. It's a versatile way to sell products from your Shift4Shop store on any WordPress sites you also own, and it takes only minutes to install and set up.
Improvements to the Shift4Shop Admin Experience
We’ve made some enhancements to make store administration easier for Shift4Shop merchants, both new and existing.
- A new Admin Onboarding process has been added to make creating and launching a new store faster and more convenient than ever.
- You can also start with a simplified version of the Admin Panel and then opt into the standard one when you are ready for the complexity that comes from having so many settings and features.
- You will no longer need to log into your store again if you visit the Login page of your store when you are already logged in on another tab in the same browser — instead you’ll be redirected into the Admin Panel.
- Store admins and Staff Users can also choose to log in using their email address instead of the username they have set on the store. A unique email address is required for each admin or Staff User.
- A non-intrusive reminder popup will appear to make it clear to all merchants that updating your Store Settings does not update your Payment Account Settings in Shift4 Payments, and will provide the contact phone number to do so.
- Refunds and partial refunds are now available as an option on the Order Details page.
Admin Payments Interface Enhancements
We have updated the Payments user interface in the Admin area to simplify management of your payments settings. This will help with enabling payments quickly as well as managing those settings for existing merchants. The update also includes management for your Offline Payments settings to further keep payment settings in a streamlined interface that makes it simpler to manage all types of payments your business can accept.
Automated Admin Notifications
Shift4Shop Version 12 also introduces some helpful notifications to keep store owners up to date on what's going on with their store.
- The new Version Update Notification is an email that will be sent to you when your store is upgraded to the latest version of Shift4Shop.
- Additionally, you will receive Security Alert emails for unusual login activity in your Shift4Shop Online Store Manager. This works by having the system check your connection's IP address and city of origin. If someone logs into your store from a different city, you'll receive an email to notify you in case this login is unauthorized. Check out our Knowledgebase for a guide to our Security Alert emails and what to do if you receive one.
Improved Zapier Integration
Zapier is a popular app that functions as a connection between other apps and software that don't have a direct integration. We've improved Shift4Shop's integration with Zapier by adding a new "Update Order" event that will allow you to set up outside applications to update an order within Shift4Shop.
New Shipping Label Printing Solution for USPS
For merchants using the US Postal Service to fulfill orders, we’ve overhauled our shipping label process. You can purchase labels directly from within your Shift4Shop Online Store Manager, and at a discounted rate, too!
Check out our Knowledgebase article for more details on how to use our new label printing solution. You can also still use our legacy shipping label manager to continue to print labels for UPS and FedEx, as the new system is currently USPS-only.
Domain Name and SSL Management Enhancements
Shift4Shop Version 12 also improves the tools merchants have available to register, connect, and manage their store’s domain name and SSL certificate.
- It’s easier than ever to claim a free domain name through our updated process.
- Similarly, you can connect a new or existing domain name to your store by following some simple steps.
- The user interface for domain management has been overhauled to make these processes clearer and simpler to follow.
- You can also use subdomains when changing your domain name, such as shop.yourbusiness.com.
Free Apps for Merchants Using Shift4 Payments
Merchants on the End-to-End eCommerce plan will now also have free access to these apps from the Shift4Shop App Store.
- Cart Notices: Notifies customers about promotional deadlines, upsell items, minimum shipping thresholds, and other factors relating to the items in their cart.
- Time to Reorder: Notifies customers that it may be time to reorder a product that gets used up and needs replenishment on a regular basis, as an alternative to subscribing to the product.
- Checkout Additional Fees: Allows you to make special offers at checkout that charge an additional fee, such as rush fulfillment or other extras that raise your order value.
- Carrier Delivery Notifications: Automatically informs customers via email when their order has been shipped and when it has been delivered.
- Autoship: Give customers the option to subscribe to a recurring order of their favorite products, increasing predictable revenue and earning loyalty.
- 3dFeedback: A customizable feedback collection system that invites customers to share their feelings about your store, so you can make improvements that will increase conversions.
- 3dboost: A fully customizable, eye-catching offer creation system that uses modal popups to bring news and offers to customer attention.
Ready to Take eCommerce to the Next Level?
Shift4Shop Version 12 offers plenty of exciting new features and enhancements to your online store, and we're proud to bring you this newest upgrade to the best eCommerce software in the industry. Our goal is always to provide you with the foundation you need to build your business to any height you desire.
Version 12 will be rolled out behind-the-scenes to Shift4Shop stores, so you don't need to do anything yourself to upgrade.
As always, we're looking forward to seeing how the Version 12 upgrades help your business reach the next level. And we're already hard at work discovering even more new eCommerce advantages to bring to you!