5 reasons behind the deprecation of Shopify checkout.liquid

5 reasons behind the deprecation of Shopify checkout.liquid

Chris Rausch
July 27, 2023

E-commerce is a constantly evolving industry. From marketing strategies to web design standards to checkout processes, it’s essential that you stay up-to-date on the best practices so that you can put your business in the best position to succeed.

As a Shopify store owner, you have the benefit of Shopify working to help you provide better service with tools, features, and platforms that drive more business and improve usability for your team. 

Shopify’s latest major update comes in the form of Checkout Extensibility, an upgrade to the checkout.liquid system that was in use for many years. The upgrade, which is set to replace checkout.liquid going forward, aims to make it easier than ever to customize your checkout pages, improve conversions, grow revenue, and increase average order values.

Keep reading to learn why Shopify is deprecating checkout.liquid and how you can upgrade to Checkout Extensibility to future-proof your checkout.

When is Shopify checkout.liquid being deprecated?

Checkout Extensibility is currently available for Shopify Plus store owners to upgrade to. It began as an exclusive upgrade for certain Shopify Plus stores, but its availability has expanded as the upgrade has been rolled out since its announcement in February 2023. It is expected to be accessible for all stores in late 2023.

Checkout.liquid will be fully deprecated by August 13, 2024, so all store owners should plan to upgrade before then to ensure your checkout stays operational and functions as intended. 

Post-purchase pages, including Thank You and Order Status, are not being deprecated at the same time as the checkout page. However, they will be replaced in the future.

5 reasons why checkout.liquid is being replaced by Checkout Extensibility

checkout extensibility replacing checkout liquid

Checkout Extensibility is a direct upgrade from checkout.liquid by Shopify. Here are 5 reasons why the upgrade is essential for the future of Shopify’s custom checkout.

Checkout.liquid’s code is replaced by user-friendly apps

Customizing your checkout is an important part of providing a high-quality customer experience that drives conversions. However, Shopify’s checkout.liquid didn’t make it easy.

Checkout.liquid is a code-based checkout system that requires direct access to a theme file to make changes. If you want to make changes to functionality, styling, or the elements of your page, you need coding experience to implement them. Without it, you risk breaking checkout and costing your business money.

With Checkout Extensibility, you can use the built-in checkout editor feature that requires no coding experience to make smaller and simple changes. Or, you can add checkout extensions to further extend functionality without touching a line of code.

Checkout.liquid isn’t update-proof

Regular updates help to keep your store safe and your checkout working correctly. But, they can also cause compatibility issues for code-based checkouts.

Checkout.liquid’s theme file includes all of the information for checkout, including app information, Shopify’s code that allows for checkout, and styling code used to customize your checkout page. When Shopify pushed an update through for checkout, the code-based nature of the file meant that you risked compatibility errors occurring with the modified code. If an issue did arise, your checkout page could break without your knowledge and cost you sales.

Checkout Extensibility separates the essential code for checkout from customization through the use of apps, allowing you to confidently update both apps and checkout individually without worrying about code changes causing issues.

Checkout Extensibility extensions simplify customization

Conversion rate optimization should be a part of every business’s checkout strategy - and checkout extensions make it easy.

As a code-based checkout, your options for customizing checkout.liquid were limited to direct code editing or relying on third-party apps to achieve the functionality you needed. As a result, teams without a developer often relied on an extensive number of different apps to work together to make things work.

Checkout Extensibility has native customization options through the new checkout editor, allowing you to make basic changes directly. You can also easily integrate checkout extensions like Checkout Extensions Plus to take advantage of the new branding API and customization tools Checkout Extensibility is capable of providing without using code or functions.

Shop Pay integrates with Checkout Extensibility

Speed is an essential element of any successful checkout page, so express checkout options like Shop Pay can greatly improve your conversion rates.

While checkout.liquid allows for Shop Pay functionality to be added to checkout, it doesn’t allow for customization in the same way that your standard checkout page can be customized. This can lead to mismatched checkout experience that hurts its effectiveness.

With Checkout Extensibility, you can customize Shop Pay to match the rest of your branding to ensure your customers are comfortable throughout the whole process.

Checkout Extensibility enables one-page checkout

Shopify’s newest announcement is the addition of an upcoming one-page checkout feature that can be added to Checkout Extensibility. Stores will be able to test out the faster checkout process by easily switching between checkouts to see if it helps drive conversions - a process that wouldn’t be possible with code-based checkout.liquid without major code disruptions and customization required to make it work.

How to upgrade from checkout.liquid to Checkout Extensibility

Shopify Plus is required to use Checkout Extensibility. Not sure if Plus is right for you? Use our Shopify Plus calculator to find out how much you can save.

Shopify Plus store owners can currently upgrade to Checkout Extensibility by going to “settings”, “checkout”, and then “checkout customization”. After creating a new draft, you can begin customizing styling, elements, and checkout extension settings in a visual builder that makes it easy to monitor changes.

Don’t want to make the upgrade yourself? Our Checkout Extensibility upgrade services help you to achieve the functionality you need with the future-proof checkout system recommended by Shopify.

Alternatives to Checkout.Liquid

shopify custom checkout

It’s no secret that Checkout Extensibility is the future of Shopify checkout. So, it’s important that you get started with the right tools to make it as easy as possible to get started with upgrading from checkout.liquid.

Checkout Extensions Plus is a checkout extension that lets anyone use Checkout Extensibility’s customization tools without touching code. You’re able to access styling, checkout fields, elements on the checkout page, and many more aspects of checkout to help create a customized experience.

Get started with a free 7-day trial today.

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