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Shopify Capital review

Short-term financing based on sales, not personal credit. But watch out for potentially high fees and inflexible repayments.

Bottom line: Shopify Capital offers a streamlined way to fund inventory or higher staff based on your sales performance, not credit. But it’s not transparent about costs and payments may be inflexible. Read our full review. or get our 30-second take.

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Details

Min. Amount$200
Max. Amount$4,000,000
Loan Term1 year
Min. Credit Score500
APRNot stated
RequirementsLow-risk profile, Shopify Payments or third-party payment provider enabled, regular sales through Shopify

Pros

  • No minimum credit score
  • Minimal or no paperwork
  • Wide range of funding available

Cons

  • Takes as long as a week to receive funds
  • Daily repayments
  • Minimum payment due every 60 days on loan

Our take

Shopify Credit is a loan or merchant cash advance for businesses that use a Shopify point of sale system. If you have the sales volume to support repayment, it’s easy to qualify. And since your loan amount, rate and repayment are based on your Shopify account, there’s minimal paperwork.

But while Shopify doesn’t disclose rates or fees, I’ve found that products like this are some of the most expensive types of financing available. And even if you have bad credit, it’s possible to find faster funding options out there. Most ecommerce platforms that offer financing can fund your loan the same day you apply. But it can take as long as five business days to even get a decision from Shopify.

Shopify Capital loan

The Shopify Capital loan works a lot like a merchant cash advance. It gives you an advance on your business’s future sales between $200 and $4,000,000, which you repay plus a fixed fee with a percentage of your daily sales.

Rates, fees and terms

Shopify doesn’t charge interest on its loans. Instead, it charges a fixed fee, based on your sales history. While it doesn’t advertise the minimum and maximum fee, the example on its website cites a $5,000 loan with a $650 fee. That works out to an APR of around 20%.

Each Shopify Capital loan comes with a 12-month term. Instead of monthly installments, Shopify collects a percentage of the sales you run through its payment processor each day. Shopify also doesn’t disclose the range of daily percentages it charges, but uses a 10% repayment rate in the example on its site.

Shopify loans also come with minimum payments every 60 days, which it calls "milestones". If your business’s daily repayments are too low to meet a milestone, the company will deduct the difference from your business bank account.

Shopify Capital merchant cash advance

Like the loan, Shopify Capital’s merchant cash advance gives your business an advance on future shopify sales, which you repay with a fixed fee. The funding amounts are also the same for both products. The main difference between the advance and the loan is how repayment works.

Rates, fees and terms

Shopify Capital also charges a fixed fee based on sales for its merchant cash advance — which it also doesn’t advertise. And borrowers generally repay the advance with a percentage of daily Shopify sales. Here, Shopify uses the term “remittance rate” to describe repayments for its merchant cash advance, instead of the “repayment rate” it uses for loans. But they are functionally the same thing.

However, there are no terms or milestones with the merchant cash advance. Once you’ve paid off at least 25% of your balance with a percentage of daily sales, you have the option to pay off the rest of the balance in one lump sum. But this is not required. If you don’t make any additional payments, the term of your merchant cash advance depends on your Shopify sales volume.

How Shopify Capital compares to other lenders

Here’s how Shopify Capital stacks up to two alternatives that work with less than perfect credit and require minimal paperwork. 

OnDeck is an online lender that offers short-term loans and lines of credit with funds available as soon as the day you apply and slightly longer terms of up to 24 months on its term loans. You also have the option for daily or weekly repayments. But you can’t borrow over $250,000.

FundBox is an online lender that also offers short-term loans and credit lines. It connects with your business’s accounting software instead of asking for paperwork and can fund your loan as soon as the next business day. It also requires weekly, instead of daily repayments — but loans cap out at $150,000.

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Find out more

Loan amount

$200 to $4,000,000

APR

Not stated

Loan term

Starting at 12 months

Requirements

Low-risk profile, Shopify Payments or third-party payment provider enabled, regular sales through Shopify

★★★★★


Finder Rating: 4.6 / 5

Check eligibility

Loan amount

$5,000 to $250,000

APR

Starting at 35%

Loan term

3 to 24 months

Requirements

600+ personal credit score, 1 year in business, $100,000+ annual revenue, active business checking account

Shopify reviews and complaints

BBB accredited Yes
BBB rating A+
BBB customer reviews 1.1 out of 5 stars, based on 88 customer reviews
BBB customer complaints 270 customer complaints
Trustpilot Score 1.4 out of 5 stars, based on 1,007 customer reviews
Customer reviews verified as of 17 June 2021

None of the recent reviews on Shopify's Trustpilot or Better Business Bureau pages cover its loan options. But there are multiple negative complaints about difficulty communicating with customer service and problems processing payments. With this history, it may be difficult to get help with your loan if you run into any problems.

How to qualify

Shopify Capital only has a few hard requirements for its term loan or lines of credit.

  • Use Shopify Payments or another third-party payment provider
  • Meet Shopify’s sales volume requirements
  • Low-risk business profile

Like fees, it doesn’t disclose sales volume requirements or what it considers to be a low-risk business profile. But having bad personal credit or few personal assets probably won’t get you disqualified.

“We don't look at individuals’ personal financial history,” Richard Shaw, Lead Product Manager at Shopify, tells Finder. “We look at their business and make funding decisions on that basis alone. Reviewing credit scores and other personal details are barriers that disproportionately disadvantage merchants of underrepresented backgrounds.”

Shopify Capital state eligibility

Shopify Capital loans are only available in the following states — though the merchant cash advance is available in all 50 states and Canada.

  • Arizona
  • Idaho
  • Illinois
  • Indiana
  • Iowa
  • Kansas
  • Louisiana
  • Maine
  • North Carolina
  • South Carolina
  • Utah
  • Washington
  • Wisconsin
  • Wyoming

How the application works

Shopify Capital's application works by sending out offers to merchants who are eligible for financing. You can view your offer and request funds by following these steps:

  1. Log in to your Shopify account.
  2. Click on the Settings menu and select Capital.
  3. Look for an eligibility message from Shopify Capital and hit View funding offers.
  4. Compare your offers and select the one that’s closest to what your business needs to borrow with repayment terms you can afford.
  5. Follow the instructions to review the terms and conditions before submitting your request.

Unlike most business loans, you can’t request a specific funding amount. But loans are based on what Shopify expects your business will be able to afford to repay. 

“Above certain funding thresholds, our staff may fact-check Capital’s data-informed process to ensure a merchant receives the funding they need to help grow their business,” Shaw says.

But generally, that’s not the case. “Merchants can typically access and accept Capital funding within a few clicks from within Shopify, allowing them to receive funding within two to five business days.”

What sets it apart?

Shopify Capital’s automated underwriting and repayment system make it a lot faster and simpler than applying for your traditional bank loan. 

“Our machine learning and AI models are key ingredients in Shopify Capital’s speed and accuracy to provide funding,” says Shaw. “By reviewing a merchant’s past sales and store performance, we can avoid having to request interviews, review credit history, request lengthy applications or to review business plans.”

What really sets it apart is that you don’t need to apply to review your offers — all you have to do is log in to your account.

But it can take longer to fund than most other online lenders, which can often fund a loan the day after you apply. It’s worth comparing the rates and terms available to you with quotes from other lenders before you decide to go with Shopify Capital.

Get started by comparing our picks for the best business loans of October 2021 — or read more about how inventory financing works.

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