Digital Downloads

With Shopify's Digital Downloads app, you can upload digital files like videos, songs, and graphic art as products in your store. When a customer purchases the digital product, they receive a link to download the file.

The three main sections in the Digital Downloads app are:

  • Dashboard, where you can view, edit, and configure digital products.
  • Orders, where you can see all orders containing digital products that have been purchased through your store.
  • Settings, where you can personalize email templates and checkout options.

Install the Digital Downloads app

To install the Digital Downloads app:

  1. From your Shopify admin, click Apps.
  2. Click Visit Shopify App Store.
  3. Enter "Digital Downloads" in the search bar, and then click Digital Downloads in the drop-down list.
  4. On the Digital Downloads page, click Get:

    Get Digital Downloads

  5. Click Install app.

Add a digital product

To add a digital product to your online store, first you need to create a product, and then return to the Digital downloads app to add the digital attachment to the product's details page.

You can attach only one file per variant. You can use a .zip file or another archive file format to bundle files together under a single filename.

To add a digital product to your online store:

  1. From your Shopify admin, click Products.
  2. Click Add product.
  3. Enter the information for your digital product, such as Title, Description, and Pricing.
  4. Under the Shipping heading, uncheck the box next to This is a physical product.
  5. To make the product temporarily unavailable until the digital attachment is added: at the top of the product page next to Sales channels, click Manage, uncheck the boxes next to your sales channels, then click Done.
  6. Click Save product.
  7. Under the product title, click the More actions drop-down menu:

    Product page more actions

  8. Click Add Digital Attachment. This will take you to the Digital Downloads app page.

  9. Click UPLOAD FILE:

    Upload file

  10. Select the file you want to attach to this product.

  11. Click VIEW IN YOUR SHOPIFY ADMIN.

  12. Now that you have added the attachment, you need to make the product available:

    1. Next to Sales channels, click Manage.
    2. Check the boxes next to the sales channels where you want to make your product available.
    3. Click Done.

Add a digital file to an existing product

As well as creating digital products, you can attach a digital download to products that are already in your online store. This includes physical products. For example, if you are a selling vinyl records, you can use the Digital Downloads app to attach an MP3 copy of the album that the customer can download.

You can attach only one file per variant. You can use a .zip file or another archive file format, which can bundle files together under a single filename.

To add a digital attachment to an existing product:

  1. From your Shopify admin, click Products.

  2. Click the title of the product you want to add an attachment to.

  3. Under the product title, click the More actions drop-down menu:

    Product page more actions

  4. Click Add Digital Attachment. This will take you to the Digital downloads app page.

  5. Click UPLOAD FILE:

    Upload file

  6. Select the file that you want to attach to this product.

Adjust the fulfillment settings for your digital products

You can review your digital attachments and adjust your fulfillment settings on the Digital Downloads app page. The options for fulfillment of a digital product are:

  • Automatically create fulfillments - If you select this option, then after a successful payment, customers who purchase this product are automatically emailed a download link and the order is marked as fulfilled. Use this option for entirely digital products, such as an MP3 or a PDF.

  • Manually create fulfillments. If you select this option, then you need to manually mark the order as fulfilled before a download link is emailed to the customer. Use this option when the product is a mix of a digital and physical products, such as a vinyl record with an MP3 download.

To adjust the fulfillment settings of a digital attachment:

  1. From your Shopify admin, click Apps.
  2. Click Digital Downloads.
  3. Click the digital product you'd like to review.
  4. Click the gear icon and select Settings in the drop-down menu:

    Settings drop-down menu

  5. From the Settings dialogue box, select the fulfillment option you want.

  6. Click SUBMIT.

If you want to use Manual fulfillment because the product contains a physical component, but you also want to send the digital component to the customer immediately after purchase, then you can send the customer a manual download link.

To send the customer a manual download link:

  1. From your Shopify admin, click Apps.
  2. Click Digital Downloads.
  3. Click the name of the digital product you'd like to create a download link for.
  4. Click the gear icon and select Manual URLs.
  5. Click GENERATE URL.
  6. Copy the URL that is generated and send it to the customer. This will allow the customer to securely download the digital attachment.

Set a download limit

You can review your digital attachments and set a download limit on the Digital Downloads app page. A download limit will control the number of times that a customer can download a digital product.

To set a download limit on a digital product:

  1. From your Shopify admin, click Apps.
  2. Click Digital Downloads.
  3. Click the digital product that you'd like to set a download limit for.
  4. Click the gear icon and select Settings in the drop-down menu:

Settings drop-down menu

  1. In the text box next to Total limit, enter the number of times you would like the customer to be able to download this file. For example, if you enter 2 here, then the customer will only be able to download the file twice.
  1. Click SUBMIT.

Modify Digital Downloads orders

The Orders section provides you with an overview of all orders containing digital downloads that have been purchased through your store. This section shows you:

  • order number
  • date and time
  • customer's name
  • customer's email
  • number of downloads per order

Digital downloads orders screen

Like the Orders page in the admin, you can click each entry to view that order's details.

Each order shows you:

  • customer name
  • customer email
  • option to resend the fulfillment email

The Orders section will also tell you any time a download was completed, the customer's IP, as well as which browser and operating system were used to download the digital item.

To resend a download email to a customer that has purchased a digital product:

  1. From your Shopify admin, click Apps.
  2. Click Digital Downloads.
  3. Click Orders.
  4. Click the order number of the order you'd like to reissue a download link for.
  5. Click RESEND DOWNLOAD EMAIL.

Cancel a download

You can deactivate a customer's download link to prevent them from being able to download the product. To cancel a download:

  1. From your Shopify admin, click Apps.
  2. Click Digital Downloads.
  3. Click Orders.
  4. Click the order number of the order you'd like to cancel the download for.
  5. Under the Download Details heading, click CANCEL.

If you want to reactivate a customer's ability to download a digital product, then return to the order page in the Digital Downloads app and click ACTIVATE under the Download Details heading.

Export a CSV file of orders

The CSV file export option, which is at the bottom of the Orders page, generates a spreadsheet file of all digital orders that have been processed by the app. This means that even if the customer has not yet downloaded the product, there will still be a record of the customer's order in this report.

The report includes:

  • order date and time
  • number of downloads
  • customer's email address
  • customer's first name
  • checkout ID associated with the order
  • customer's last name
  • total number of line items in the order
  • order total (including shipping and tax)
  • SKUs included in the order
  • order number (listed as title)
  • date of last update

To download a CSV file of your digital product orders:

  1. From your Shopify admin, click Apps.
  2. Click Digital Downloads.
  3. Click Orders.
  4. Click Export your orders:

Export orders

Edit email templates

The Settings section provides you with ways to personalize the emails that you send to customers. There are two email templates associated with digital products:

  • Downloads ready. Customers receive this email when their digital product is ready to download.
  • Attachment updated. Customers receive this email when a digital product they've purchased has been updated.

To edit the Digital Downloads app email templates:

  1. From your Shopify admin, click Apps.
  2. Click Digital Downloads.
  3. Click Settings.
  4. Click the name of the email template you want to edit.
  5. Make the desired changes.

  6. Click Save.

You can set whether customers can download the digital product directly on the checkout page by following these steps:

  1. From your Shopify admin, click Apps.
  2. Click Digital Downloads.
  3. Click Settings.
  4. Next to Checkout, check or uncheck the box next to Display download link on checkout page.
  • If you check the box next to Display download link on checkout page, then the customer will see a Download now link on the order confirmation page. The customer will still also receive an email with the ability to download the file.

  • If you uncheck the box next to Display download link on checkout page, then the customer will not see a Download now link on the order confirmation page. They will receive an email with the ability to download the file.

  1. Click Save.

FAQ about Digital Downloads

What is the maximum file size I can upload?

The maximum file size is 5 GB. If you are concerned that the upload/attachment is taking a long time to finish, it is likely due to your ISP's upload throttle, which can be slow compared to download speeds.

Can I upload multiple files to the same product?

No. You can only upload one file per product. If you need to attach more files, then you can use a .zip file or another type of archive file that can contain files within it. You can't upload file folders.

Can I limit the number of times a customer can download a product?

Yes. You can limit the number of times each customer can download a product. This is set in the product's settings in the Dashboard. To remove a download limit, set the limit to 0 (zero).

Is there a bandwidth limit for a download?

No. The bandwidth statistic in the app's main menu is for your information only.

Ready to start selling with Shopify?

Try it free