Shopify and International Taxes: The Last Word

International taxes can be a nightmare. But they’re unavoidable if you want to take your products to a global audience – and it’s something you have to get right.

So here it is: a definitive guide on exactly how Shopify handles international taxation, how to make it work for you so that you can be confident you’re getting it right.

If you want to be able to let users in different countries pay different tax rates on your products, you need to enter your prices without taxes.

 On each product you want any taxes to apply to, you need to tick the ‘Charge taxes on this product’ box on the pricing screen (or the edit screen of each of its variants).

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Then you must set up each of your tax zones and each country you would like to sell to as shipping zones in Settings -> Shipping.

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Then go to Settings -> Taxes and set a tax rate for each zone.


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In Settings -> Taxes, deselect ‘Prices include tax’.


This will mean that your products will show prices without tax until the checkout. At the checkout, taxes will be applied according to the country and area code inputted by the user.

If you want to give users in different countries different tax rates but still want to show prices including tax on your site, then you need to implement some custom work across your site with geolocation and JavaScript.

We’re currently cooking up some ways to help store owners do this themselves (watch this space), but in the mean time you will need to get a developer to do this. If you want to speak to somebody at Eastside Co about implementing this work or about which option suits your store best, send us a message or give us a call on 0121 794 0199.

If you don’t want to implement this ‘fix’, your other option is to tick ‘Prices include tax’ and show your prices with your domestic tax all the way through the site. However if you do this Shopify will not use tax zones to remove the tax from the price for countries that should not pay it.

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Here is a summary of your three options

  • Show prices that include your domestic tax rate throughout your site, but this means you cannot remove this tax for users in countries that don’t pay it. You would enter your prices with tax.
  • Give users in different countries different tax rates at checkout, but show prices before tax until the user gets to checkout. You would enter your prices without tax.
  • Set-up your site as you would in option B, but use geolocation and JavaScript to show users prices with their correct tax throughout the site.

Want some advice on the best option for you? Get in touch.

5 Tips for Increasing Customer Lifetime Value on your Shopify Value

Customer Lifetime Value (CLV) represents the total amount of money your customer might spend in your store during their lifetime.

Knowing these stats is important for helping you understand whether you should be spending more effort acquiring new customers, or more effort retaining the ones you do have.

Calculating CLV

The simplest way to calculate CLV is:

(Average Value of a Sale) X (Number of Repeat Transactions) X (Average Retention Time in Months or Years)

For example, if a customer spends $5 on deodorant per month for 5 years, then the lifetime value of that customer is $5 x 12 months x 5 years = $300.


If you’re looking to increase your CLV for your Shopify store, follow these top 5 tips:

  1. Brand loyalty: It’s no surprise that customers who are loyal to their brand will continue to shop there and buy their products.

Take Apple for example: the majority of Apple’s customers tend to have multiple pieces from the collection.

Building brand loyalty helps increase your CLV because customers are more likely to return to your store and give you their custom.

One way to improve your brand loyalty is to make use of an online loyalty or rewards program.

If your rewards are attainable your customers know they exist which means they’re likely to spend more money in order to win them.

Be sure your loyalty program offers worthwhile rewards too. If you have a health food product, don’t give away high-sugar foods as a reward.

View every customer interaction as an opportunity to improve customer loyalty.

  1. Build relationships: You have a duty as a Shopify store owner to provide your customers with what you say you will provide them with. This means always aiming to go above and beyond. In doing so, you can hope to build long-lasting relationship with your customers.

This relationship can help increase your customer lifetime value as it moves your customers from short term achievements, into long term ones. In order to do this, you need to communicate with your customers.

If you can, provide multiple ways for them to contact you. Also, make sure you’re delivering on any expectations you set for your brand whether this be delivery times or special offers.

  1. Use Email to pre-emptively answer common questions, and provide customer education. You should never wait for customers to come to you with their concerns before you address an issue.

If something is causing concern for your customers, or might well be adding friction to your sale, then you need to pre-empt this and quell these thoughts.

Educating your customers means they become experts and are more informed to make correct purchase decisions.

Giving out free information does not go unnoticed with customers, and they’re more likely to do business with the company who are always providing knowledge and support.

  1. Up-sell and cross-sell: If you want to increase your customer lifetime value, try to up and cross sell at any opportunity.

Up-selling is where you take the value of a single item and increase it. For example, if you sold health supplements, you might try and up-sell to the larger packet.

However, cross-selling is where you offer your customer something related to that item they might also want. For example, if you sold bicycles, and someone recently purchased one, you might cross-sell and offer them a tire repair kit and pump.

  1. Make customer service easy: 76% of consumers say they view customer service as the true test of how much a company values them and 97% of global consumers say that customer service is very important or somewhat important in their choice of and loyalty to a brand.Incorporate customer feedback to improve everything from user experience to product features & design.

Increase customer lifetime value will increase revenue

When you increase your company’s customer lifetime value, you’re increasing your customer loyalty, and revenue too. Spend less time looking for new customers, and more time harnessing the relationships you have with your current ones.

If you’re interested in getting a loyalty program to help you out with maintaining loyalty for your e-commerce store, we recommend companies such as Loyalty Lion who specialise in rewarding your customers’ loyalty.

Click here to get 10% off your first year.

Pinterest & Shopify Integration – How Does it Work?

Ingeniously, Shopify and Pinterest have partnered up in order to allow customers to buy Shopify products directly from Pinterest, without having to leave the Pinterest site or app.

Pinterest has over 100 million users worldwide, per month which gives your store an astounding opportunity to reach potential customers. So, how does it work and how do you do it?

How Does it Work?

As a Shopify store owner, you can create Buyable Pins for your products. To do this, you need to add the Pinterest sales channel in your Shopify admin (more on this below). Once this has been done, your Shopify store will then be integrated with Pinterest’s Rich Pins which offers the Pinterest user up-to-date pricing and inventory information on Pins for your products. The customer can then quickly and easily purchase the product from the Buyable Pin!

Checking Out on Pinterest

Screen Shot 2015-11-24 at 15.53.48For the very first time, customers can use Pinterest as a checkout. It’s amazing really that it’s taken this long but the time is now here and customers can use a credit card or Apply Pay without having to leave the Pinterest app.

How to Measure Engagement & Sales

Tracking and measuring the amount of Pins, repins and orders via pinerest is as simple as looking at your Pinterest Channel Dashboard in your Shopify Admin.

What are the Benefits of the Pinterest and Shopify Integration?

There are a number of benefits to integrating your Shopify store with Pinterest. As with any sort of business growth, this integration allows your images not only to be found on a different forum, but also purchased from. How could this possibly be bad? More specifically, this integration is fantastic for:

Growing your Brand

Pinterest creates an atmosphere and feel which allows you to sell a lifestyle rather than just a product. By using Pinterest, you can create stories around your product pins with your specific customer persona in mind.

Expand your Audience

This is a fantastic time to collect new customers. Make sure all of your Pinterest written content is highly descriptive with lots of tags and keywords so that you are able to reach a wider audience through search.

Increase your Network

Pinterest is another platform to network on.  Tap into influencer marketing by asking Pinfluencers and bloggers to create guest Boards for you.

Improving your Click-through-rate

Using Rich Pins is a great way to help build your business. Looking at stats, on average, after enabling Rich Pins, Shopify stores receive a 70% increase in traffic from Pinterest.

Better Discoverability

The more you have out there in the big wide web, the better your discoverability will be. Your products’ Rich Pins will become eligible for Pinterest’s curated categories which is only possible in some feeds such as the ‘Gifts’ feed, if you have Rich Pins.

Pricing Notifications

A fantastic feature of this integration is that if you choose to change a price of your product, be it for a sale or offer, customers who have repinned your products will get an email from Pinterest telling them about the price change and encouraging them to buy it.

How do I Integrate?

It really is simple enough. First, you need to create a business Pinterest account. If you already have a personal Pinterest account, head to this link to convert it to a business account:

If you’re a first timer and need to create a brand new business account, go to: to join. At this point, ensure that you enter the Primary Domain of your Shopify store. Adding a Pinterest button to your product pages is important for generating sales so make sure that you either install an app via the Shopify App store or add the button yourself.

We see this as a must have for any Shopify store owner so head out and integrate now.


E-Commerce News in Tweets: Facebook is Leading the Way for Social Ecommerce

Facebook is already the leading social media platform, driving more than two-thirds of mobile e-commerce traffic and boosting social media’s quickly growing share of e-commerce web traffic.

In terms of social referrals Facebook takes up 50% and 64% of the total social revenue. The social media giant have been going strong for a whopping 11 years now and is just becoming more and more popular and stepping on other social media platforms that try to take its number one spot.

Continue reading “E-Commerce News in Tweets: Facebook is Leading the Way for Social Ecommerce”

Ecommece News in Tweets: Sainsburys is Joining the World Of E-Commerce

Sainsbury’s is looking to take on Marks & Spencer, Tesco and Asda by a new E-Commerce website for it’s TU clothing brand. The website went live yesterday on 13th August, following a very successful trial in the Midlands last September, and then in London in January. Sainsbury’s then decided to follow the likes of Asda’s George, to create a website that is centred solely on their very successful clothing brand.

Continue reading “Ecommece News in Tweets: Sainsburys is Joining the World Of E-Commerce”

eCommerce News in Tweets: UK’s eCommerce Growth Doubles in Second Quarter

eCommerce is still booming, and here are some stats to prove it.

Figures from the IMRG Capgemini e-Retail Sales Index has recently found that the UK online retail sales figures have grown by 18% in June of this year. This has been seen to be the highest record annual growth for 2015 and equals to around a whopping £9.3 billion spent online!

Continue reading “eCommerce News in Tweets: UK’s eCommerce Growth Doubles in Second Quarter”

How to Integrate Apple Pay into your Shopify Store

Apple Pay officially launched in the UK on 14th June 2015. The mobile payment mechanism will be an alternative to credit and debit cards, and will allow consumers to pay for items costing up to £20 by just touching their iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus or Apple Watch to a payment terminal. Continue reading “How to Integrate Apple Pay into your Shopify Store”

Ecommerce News in Tweets – 5th June 2015


Once the Apple watch was launched it took the tech world by storm as it was expected that by June there would be 2.3 million pre-orders which was more than three times than what Android’s overall sales were with their alternative, Android Wear which was only around 720,000.

It is hard to determine how the Apple Watch will affect brands and consumers however this isn’t a surprise as all first launches of Apple products have had the same affect. As with the iPod and iPhone it is clear that the Apple Watch will have some glitches in its first round however by its second iteration it will drastically improve and just become more and more popular.

Continue reading “Ecommerce News in Tweets – 5th June 2015”