Shopify Subscriptions API: All You Need to Know

Jul 29, 2023

In the ever-evolving world of eCommerce, businesses seek innovative ways to enhance customer loyalty and revenue predictability. Enter the Shopify Subscriptions API – a powerful tool to empower merchants with subscription-based services. This article delves into the essence of the Shopify Subscriptions API, exploring how it enables seamless integration of subscription functionalities into Shopify stores. Discover how this API paves the way for custom subscription experiences, simplified billing, and a more engaging shopping journey for both merchants and customers.

Shopify Subscriptions API: Background Information

What is Shopify subscriptions API?

The Shopify Subscriptions API is a programming interface provided by Shopify, an e-commerce platform, that allows developers to integrate subscription-based services into their online stores. With this API, merchants can offer product subscription plans, allowing customers to sign up for recurring payments and receive products or services regularly. The API enables developers to manage the entire subscription lifecycle, including creating and managing subscription plans, handling recurring billing, and handling subscription-related events.

Who should use Shopify subscription API?

Various stakeholders use the Shopify Subscriptions API to enhance their Shopify stores and offer subscription-based products or services:

Developers and Experts: Developers can leverage the Shopify Subscriptions API to create custom apps that extend the functionality of Shopify stores. They can build subscription management solutions, implement advanced billing systems, and integrate with other software to provide comprehensive solutions for merchants and customers. These experts can profit by offering their expertise in subscription-related services and staying updated with the ongoing digital transformation in e-commerce.

Designers: Designers can utilize the Shopify Subscriptions API to create visually appealing and user-friendly subscription experiences. They can design custom visuals, layout components, and multiple themes for the customer's cart, improving the overall aesthetics and user interface of the subscription system within the Shopify store.

Shopify Merchants: Merchants on the Shopify platform can benefit from the Subscriptions API by offering subscription-based products or services to their customers. By using the API, merchants can monitor the performance of their subscription offerings, track sales and revenue from subscriptions, and make data-driven adjustments to optimize their subscription business.

How does the Shopify subscriptions API work?

The Shopify Subscriptions API allows developers to interact with the subscription system programmatically. It provides endpoints and methods that enable the creation, management, and retrieval of subscription-related data. Merchants can define subscription plans with specific intervals (e.g., monthly, weekly) and set pricing accordingly. Customers can then subscribe to these plans through the online store.

The API allows retrieving subscription details, such as upcoming renewal dates, active subscriptions, and billing history. You can also use webhooks to receive real-time updates about subscription events, such as successful renewals or cancellations, to handle related business processes, or send personalized notifications.

By integrating with the Shopify Subscriptions API, you can streamline your subscription offerings, automate billing processes, and provide customers with a seamless and reliable subscription experience.

How to Apply for Access & The App Review Process?

Shopify subscription API is open for both public and custom app, so you can apply it for access, and create your Shopify app.

#1. Request access

To create a subscription app, you first need to request access to 2 protect scopes as below:

  • read_customer_payment_methods: This enables your app to read customer payment methods.
  • write_own_subscription_contracts: This allows your app to read and write subscription contract mutations for contracts.

Requesting access to the read_customer_payment_methods and write_own_subscription_contracts scopes for the Shopify Subscriptions API is a crucial step in ensuring secure and appropriate usage of sensitive customer payment information. By going through the access request process, Shopify can verify the legitimacy of your app's intentions and review how these scopes will be utilized to protect customer data.

If your app had access to these scopes during the early access period, you won't need to request access again when the API becomes public. Your previously approved permissions will carry over, streamlining the transition to the public release. This avoids redundancy and allows you to focus on refining your app's features and functionalities, readying it for a broader audience of Shopify merchants.

Follow the steps below to ask for access to Shopify subscriptions API:

  • Step 1: Login to your Shopify Partner Dashboard, go to your app’s overview page, click App setup.
  • Step 2: Select Request access under the Access Subscription APIs tab in the Subscriptions section.
shopify subscriptions api
  • Step 3: In this step, you will be asked to explain why you are applying for access. Then, hit the Request access button.
shopify subscriptions api
  • Step 4: The Subscriptions section will display your request pending approval.
  • If it is approved, a “Manage subscriptions” banner will show up.
  • If it is denied, you will see the Request denied banner with the options to get more information or file an appeal against the decision.

#2. The app review process

If you are developers who want to sell your app on the Shopify App Store, you have to submit it for approval. This process may take up to 10 business days.

  • Step 1: From your Shopify Partner Dashboard, go to Apps > Select the name of your app.
  • Step 2: Click Distribution.
  • Step 3: If you haven’t already chosen a distribution option, pass the 2 steps above, choose Shopify App Store > Confirm.
  • Step 4: Click Create listing or Manage listing.
shopify subscriptions api
  • Step 5: Choose an existing listing, or tap Add translated listing.
The app review process in Shopify Subscription APIs
  • Step 6: Enter all needed information fields by following this listing guideline.
  • Step 7: Select Preview listing to see how your listing looks when it publishes.
  • Step 8: Click Save.
  • Step 9: Tap the back button at the top of the form to return to the app listing page.
  • Step 10: Select Submit app.
  • Step 11: Tick the checkbox to acknowledge that your app satisfies the submission requirements > Submit for review.

Shopify Subscriptions API: FAQs

Can you make a subscription website on Shopify?

Yes, you can create a subscription-based website on Shopify using the Shopify Subscriptions API. With this API, developers can integrate subscription functionality into the Shopify store, allowing customers to subscribe to recurring payments for products or services.

Does Shopify have an API integration?

Yes, Shopify provides a comprehensive API (Application Programming Interface) that allows developers to integrate external applications, services, and custom solutions with the Shopify platform. The API enables seamless data exchange, enabling developers to extend and enhance Shopify stores' functionality.

How do I view my subscriptions on Shopify?

As a customer, you can view your subscriptions on Shopify by logging into your account on the Shopify store where you have subscribed to the products or services. Within your account, there should be a section or page dedicated to managing your subscriptions, where you can view details and make changes if needed.

How do I add a subscribe button to Shopify?

To add a "Subscribe" button to Shopify, you need to integrate the Shopify Subscriptions API or use a subscription management app from the Shopify App Store. The API or app will enable you to create subscription plans for products, set pricing, and display a "Subscribe" button on the product pages, allowing customers to subscribe to the products or services.


The Shopify Subscriptions API revolutionizes eCommerce by offering seamless subscription experiences. Access to protected scopes ensures the secure handling of customer payment data. As businesses integrate innovative apps and captivating designs, you can explore the benefits of recurring revenue and thrive in the competitive online retail landscape.

Alice Pham

Writer and Blogger about Technology and Marketing. I also share my knowledge of Shopify, WordPress, and WooCommerce. Contact me via email: or

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