Uptop x Shopify and What to Expect in 2023

January 31, 2023

First off, we are stoked to announce the completion of our Shopify integration in partnership with Shopify. We listened to both our customers and the Shopify team to understand the biggest gaps in the current web3 offering available in Shopify’s app store. While the menu is becoming more robust every day, there was a clear need for a sophisticated airdropping tool to help merchants reward their most loyal customers with blockchain-based collectibles (an airdrop is simply to send an NFT or cryptocurrency to someone as a gift or bonus). Additionally, we’ve found that most of the existing solutions for token-gating, one of the most important pillars of Shopify’s token-gated commerce vision, are either difficult to install, require manual overwriting of the theme template, or potentially expose some security vulnerabilities in the merchant’s storefront. We shipped both features in a very easy-to-use fashion with our integration.

The first step in rewarding customers with an airdrop is to launch a new collectible in the Uptop Dashboard. With a few clicks and minimal configuration, anyone can launch a brand new NFT collection on Polygon in under a minute. Next, merchants can configure the newly created NFT collection to accompany the purchase of any product in their store right from the Shopify Admin. On the customer side, this flow reveals a “Click to Claim Airdrop” button on the product detail page, which will allow customers to connect their web3 wallets and receive the Airdrop directly after completing checkout.

The second key feature of our Shopify app is token-gating, which will enable merchants to power discounts, free shipping, and even free merchandise on both fungible and non-fungible token balances. To create a token-gate on an NFT, merchants only need to enter the NFT collection to gate against. To token-gate against fungible (cryptocurrency) token balances, merchants should enter the Token and qualifying amount, and any connected user with a balance above that amount will be able to access the benefit. On the customer’s side, an active token-gated benefit will reveal a “Click to Claim Discount” prompt on the product detail page. When clicked, the user will be able to connect a web3 wallet and sign a message to proceed to the checkout page with a promotional code activated.  

An example token-gated discount prompt in our Shopify test store, which shows available discounts and required balances.

The possibilities for the future of token-gated commerce enabled by our new Shopify integration are endless. Imagine a promotion in which customers receive airdrops for purchasing specific items in a merchant’s Shopify store. If a customer collects specific combinations of items, it could unlock a bonus collectible that entitles the holder to a 10% discount at the store. This collectible could of course be traded or sold, which in the world of web3 rewards, becomes the owner’s prerogative. Alternatively, imagine an existing NFT community launching or adding functionality to its own Shopify store, where all NFT holders receive one free merch item per month.

Big Year Ahead

We wanted to wrap up this post by offering a few thoughts on the state of web3 loyalty as well as crypto adoption more broadly. There’s no denying that the industry faced a set of unforeseen setbacks in 2022: unfortunately, some unscrupulous people made the decision to exploit the world’s enthusiasm for a promising, new technology, and this had consequences that reverberated through every corner of our ecosystem. Still, the green shoots we have seen early in 2023 indicate that the future is bright - we are fielding interest from companies to power up loyalty experiences across diverse industries including sports and entertainment, consumer-packaged goods, travel, and retail. The addressable market for customer loyalty is massive, and with every day that we put between ourselves and last year’s negative events, the more we see people focusing on the tangible benefits of blockchain tech and less on the noise. Don’t just take it from us, but listen to the brains at BCG who had this to say about the potential for web3 to power more robust loyalty programs. Some of the other recent news we’ve been excited about include Plaid’s connect wallet interface and Instagram’s success with their NFT minting pilot. Involvement from blue chip players like these will help bring legitimacy and mainstream acceptance back to our industry.

We know the power of blockchain technology will fundamentally change relationships between consumers and the brands they love. Uptop is here for it, and we’re building towards a future that will include a simpler, more meaningful, and personalized rewards experience for customers who stay loyal to their favorite brands. Stay tuned for more development in this fashion, including some upcoming news out of our partnership with Mastercard!