The Storefront API gives you full creative control to build customized purchasing experiences for your customers.
In contrast with the Admin API, which enables developers to build apps around merchant-facing actions (such as shipping and fulfillment), the Storefront API focuses on shopping experiences seen from the customer perspective.
Using the Storefront API, you can:
- Fetch data about a single product or a collection of products to display on any website or device.
- Create unique checkout experiences with full control over the shopping cart.
- Create new customers or modify existing ones, including address information.
Ways to build with the Storefront API
Shopify provides the flexibility to build with the Storefront API using custom, private, and public apps:
Using a custom app
Build a custom app from your Partner Dashboard for one specific merchant. For example, build a custom app to display sales numbers on a merchant's existing website.
Using a private app
Build a private app for one merchant. For example, build a private app to add e-commerce functionality to a merchant's existing website.
Using a public app
Build a public app that meets the needs of many merchants and that you can list in the Shopify App Store. For example, you could combine Storefront and Admin API functionality to build apps that work in the Shopify admin and also deliver customized purchasing experiences.
Using an unauthenticated public API
The Storefront API is an unauthenticated public API, which means that the data it publishes can be accessed by users without them having to provide a username or password. All someone needs to access the data is the storefront access token, which any customers or visitors to the storefront could potentially get. You should only use the Storefront API if you are comfortable with this risk, and you should limit which store data can be accessed through the API.
You can limit which store data is exposed to the Storefront API when you create a storefront access token. If you've already created a storefront access token, then you can change the Storefront API permissions to limit what types of store data can be accessed using the storefront access token.
Follow the getting started guide to quickly get up-and-running with the Storefront API and begin building your own custom purchasing experience:
Where to get help
Use Shopify's Storefront API to create custom storefronts for practically any interface.
Learn how to query the API using GraphQL, and how to build customized purchasing experiences.
Visit our forums to connect with the community and find out more about the Shopify API and App development.
The Shopify API supports custom storefronts that let merchants sell anywhere, even outside of Shopify:
- Use the Mobile Buy SDK to surface a Shopify store's products and checkout in a mobile app using native mobile GUI elements powered by Shopify's commerce tools.
- Use the Shopify SDK for Unity to add in-game/app purchases in Unity that connect with products in Shopify.
About custom storefronts and headless commerce
Most Shopify plans include an Online Store that can be customized using themes. Building a custom storefront lets you add e-commerce functionality to any website, mobile app, or game. This approach is sometimes referred to as headless commerce, an architecture where the front end and back end are independent. In a headless commerce implementation you'd create your own customized front end, and retrieve products, customers, and orders from Shopify. Customers would purchase products through Shopify checkout or your own custom checkout solution using the Storefront API.
Access the Storefront API to quickly get up-and-running building your own custom purchasing experience.