Shopify Capital is a business financing program offered by the e-commerce platform Shopify. Pre-qualified Shopify sellers with consistent sales can get fast access to small-business loans and merchant cash advances.
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Shopify Capital business loans
Shopify Capital loans are lump-sum loans that come with a borrowing fee. You repay the loan and fee in increments over your set term. Funds are deposited into the business bank account associated with your Shopify account, and Shopify deducts a fixed percentage of your daily sales — called the repayment rate — until the loan and fee are fully repaid.
Shopify Capital merchant cash advances
Shopify Capital merchant cash advances function like typical merchant cash advances — they are lump sum amounts that you receive in exchange for a set amount of your future sales revenue. Like Shopify Capital business loans, you’ll also pay a fixed fee on top of repaying the advance. The advance gets deposited into your business bank account, and Shopify deducts a fixed percentage of your daily sales until the advance and fee have been collected.
On a $10,000 merchant cash advance with a borrowing fee of $1,300 and a repayment rate of 10%, the total amount that you have to repay Shopify is $11,300 (the advance plus the fee). Every day that you have Shopify sales, Shopify will deduct 10% of your sales until the full $11,300 is repaid. On days that you have no Shopify sales, nothing will be deducted.
Shopify Capital is best for borrowers who:
Are Shopify sellers. Shopify Capital loans are underwritten based on many Shopify seller data points, so you are required to be a seller on Shopify’s platform for at least 90 days.
Need fast financing. Shopify Capital reviews most applications within one to three business days, and you must be invited to apply. If approved, you may receive funding directly into your business bank account within a couple of business days. However, if you have the time to explore options, there may be better and less expensive options out there for you.
Are having trouble qualifying for other forms of financing. Shopify Capital does not run a personal credit check, look at personal financials or require collateral in the form of personal assets, which may all be barriers to traditional forms of financing. Conversely, if you have decent credit and good personal finances, you may consider exploring other loan or line of credit options, which may be less expensive in the long run.
Shopify Capital loan features
Estimated APR range
Rates vary for both business loans and merchant cash advances depending on your business’s revenue. Shopify does not specify interest rates on their website.
Shopify Capital charges a fixed fee for their financing, for both business loans and merchant cash advances.
Shopify does not specify specific term lengths for their business loans. For merchant cash advances, you pay until the total cost of your financing is paid off.
For both business loans and merchant cash advances, Shopify collects a daily payment that is a pre-set percentage of total sales revenue for that day. The higher your revenue, the higher the payment. If you don’t have any sales revenue for a day, then you don’t pay that day.
Shopify reviews applications for business loans and merchant cash advances within one to three business days, but in some cases it may take longer. Funds are automatically deposited into your linked business bank account if you are approved.
Where Shopify Capital stands out
Shopify Capital uses two phases of underwriting, one of which is a pre-qualification stage, which is why it’s an invitation-only form of financing. The pre-qualification means that the process can move relatively simply and quickly once you decide to apply. Applications are typically reviewed within one to three business days of being submitted, and funds are deposited directly into your business bank account within a couple of days upon approval.
Lenient eligibility requirements
Shopify Capital underwrites based on your business’s revenue and doesn’t factor in things like personal credit score or collateral, which can be barriers in traditional forms of financing.
If you end up getting a loan from Shopify Capital, you can manage repayments and even apply for additional financing from your Shopify dashboard. Having everything in one place may be ideal for some business owners.
Where Shopify Capital falls short
Shopify reviews your business activity on their platform and makes a decision to invite you to apply for financing. Without this invitation, you can’t apply for funding yourself.
Shopify doesn’t disclose a lot of pertinent loan information like interest rates, term lengths and more, and it is also vague about how it makes financing decisions. That can make it difficult to compare loan terms and make the best decision for your business.
Repayment for both the business loans and merchant cash advances are structured to fluctuate with your business’s daily sales. While this means that you won’t be charged on days when you have no sales, it also means that if you have higher sales days, the portion Shopify takes is bigger. That can make it difficult for your business to grow, especially if you have a lot of other fixed expenses.
Shopify Capital loan requirements
Financing through Shopify Capital is by invitation only, which means Shopify will let you know through your account if you’re eligible for a business loan or merchant cash advance. Although there are no rigid requirements, here are a few basic details you should know.
Your store must be located in the U.S., Canada, Australia or the U.K.
You must have consistent Shopify sales and have been selling on Shopify for at least 90 days.
Alternatives to Shopify Capital
OnDeck is an online lender that offers fast funding for small-business owners, especially those who are having trouble qualifying for traditional forms of financing. It offers small-business loans as well as business lines of credit, and funding in some instances may be available the same day you apply and are approved.
Funding Circle offers online term loans for established businesses with good credit who are still prioritizing a quick, streamlined option. Qualifications include a minimum of two years in business, a 660 personal credit score and at least $50,000 in annual revenue. Funding is between $25,000 and $500,000 and terms range between six months and seven years.
Fora Financial offers business loans and merchant cash advances up to $1,500,000. Applicants may qualify with credit scores as low as 500, at least six months in business and a minimum of $15,000 in monthly revenue. Fora’s merchant cash advances are repaid through a fixed percentage of daily or weekly sales, and their whole process from application to funding takes between 24 and 72 hours.
If you have decent credit and are looking to cover gaps in cash flow, you may consider a line of credit from American Express. It offers a business line of credit between $2,000 and $250,000 with a minimum credit score requirement of 660. It offers flexible terms of six, 12 or 18 months, but you make monthly, instead of weekly, payments.
Find the right business loan
The best business loan is generally the one with the lowest rates and most ideal terms. But other factors — like time to fund and your business’s qualifications — can help determine which option you should choose. NerdWallet recommends comparing small-business loans to find the right fit for your business.
A version of this article originally appeared on Fundera, a subsidiary of NerdWallet.