Selling Digital Products on Shopify: Delivering Downloads and Recurring Subscriptions

Selling Digital Products on Shopify: Delivering Downloads and Recurring Subscriptions


In the digital era, selling physical products is no longer the only way to make a profit. The rise of digital products, from ebooks to software to online courses, has revolutionized the e-commerce landscape. Digital products offer a scalable, cost-effective alternative to traditional retail, and platforms like Shopify have made it easier than ever to break into this market. This blog post will guide you through the steps of selling digital products on Shopify, from setup to delivery, and even recurring subscriptions.

Setting up a Digital Product on Shopify

Adding a digital product to your Shopify store is similar to adding a physical product, with a few key differences. Here’s a step-by-step guide:

  1. From your Shopify admin, click Products, then click Add product.
  2. Enter your product’s name, description, and image. For digital products, it’s crucial to provide detailed information about what the customer will receive and how it will be delivered.
  3. In the Pricing section, enter the product’s price. You can also add a compare at price to show a discounted rate.
  4. In the Inventory section, set the SKU to Digital and uncheck the Track quantity option, as digital products have unlimited stock.
  5. In the Shipping section, uncheck the This is a physical product box.
  6. Click Save.

Remember, an optimized product page can significantly improve conversions. Use high-quality images, write compelling descriptions that highlight the product’s benefits and features, and set a competitive pricing strategy.

Managing Digital Downloads

Once a customer purchases a digital product, they'll expect immediate access to it. Shopify offers several methods to manage and deliver digital downloads:

  1. Manual Delivery: You can email the digital product to the customer after purchase. This method is labor-intensive and not scalable for larger stores.
  2. Automated Delivery with Shopify Digital Downloads App: Shopify's Digital Downloads app automatically sends a download link to customers after purchase. You can set the number of times a product can be downloaded and even update the file after purchase, if necessary.
  3. Third-Party Apps: Apps like SendOwl or FetchApp offer advanced features such as PDF stamping, license key generation, and video streaming.

Remember, a smooth delivery process enhances customer experience and boosts your store's credibility.

Setting up Recurring Subscriptions

Recurring subscriptions can generate a steady income stream for your business. Shopify supports recurring subscriptions for digital products through third-party apps like Recharge, Bold Subscriptions, or PayWhirl Recurring Payments. Here’s a general guide to setting up a subscription:

  1. Install your chosen subscription app from the Shopify App Store.
  2. Follow the app’s instructions to create a subscription product. You’ll be able to set the subscription frequency, pricing, and customization options.
  3. Ensure your payment gateway supports recurring payments.
  4. Promote your subscription product on your store.

Subscriptions are excellent for products like online courses, premium content, or digital services. They provide customers with continuous value and help you predict your revenue.

Best Practices for Selling Digital Products

Finally, let's explore some strategies to maximize your success in selling digital products:

  1. High-Quality Product Pages: Use high-quality images or videos, write detailed descriptions, and leverage customer reviews to build trust.
  2. Effective Marketing: Leverage social media, email marketing, SEO, and paid advertising to reach your target audience.
  3. Post-Purchase Support: Offer excellent customer service to assist with any issues after purchase.
  4. Regular Updates: Keep your digital products up-to-date to deliver continuous value to your customers.


The world of digital products offers endless opportunities for those willing to navigate its landscape. With Shopify, managing digital products—from setup to delivery—has never been easier. And with the right strategies, you can leverage this versatile platform to create a thriving digital storefront. Whether you're selling ebooks, software, or subscriptions, Shopify is a robust and reliable choice. So don't wait. Start your digital product journey today and open up a new world of potential for your business.


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