7 Live Examples of Headless Commerce on Shopify

3 Min Read

What is Headless Commerce?

Most ecommerce websites are built using a monolithic architecture. This means that both the front and the backend of the website are unified and operate under the same system. 

Headless commerce is an architecture that decouples a commerce system’s “head”, or front end – the customer-facing storefront including images and text – from back-end commerce functions. Headless commerce systems allow organizations to rapidly iterate the user experience to optimize customer journeys and increase conversion.

Headless architecture also allows for use of a storefront API. An API (Application Programming Interface) is a tool that allows for two or more software programs to communicate with each other. A storefront API allows front-end customization through backend and device agnosticism. 

For example, Corra’s PWA-enabled storefront which is part of the full-stack Pylot framework uses a storefront API for maximum composability and flexibility. Enabling teams to expedite headless commerce builds. 

Why Headless on Shopify?

One of the most rapidly growing solutions for headless commerce is Shopify. Shopify often handles both the front end and back end of a website creating a streamlined path to basic functionalities.

However, Shopify is flexible, and modern frameworks like Pylot include a feature complete PWA-enabled storefront and library of hundreds of reusable components. Which are paired with an API gateway and microservices integration layer, allowing any type of business to connect a fast and flexible Pylot storefront to a Shopify backend. 


Pros and Cons of Using Shopify 


More Control: The plug-and-play options are expansive, and Shopify has extensive themes available for your website. With Shopify’s friendly and simple interface you can have your ecommerce storefront looking and working exactly as you want it to.

Speed: The greatest benefit of a headless system is the increased speed that comes with it. With headless, freeing the front end from the back end means that no matter how much content the e-commerce store has the UX will never suffer or slow down leading to higher conversion rates and more sales. 

Merchandising: Shopify allows users to create discount codes, link products across different platforms, and apply different add-ons to manage SEO. 



Price: Shopify Plus does have a monthly subscription fee, that while not exorbitant, is an overhead cost. And as a SAAS solution, Shopify Plus does not require any regular upgrades to continue running.  

Limited Options: Due to the coding restrictions of Shopify there are not infinite options. Shopify instead has many prepackaged options that are usable, but the platform doesn’t allow total freedom out of the box. For this reason, Shopify is a great entry into ecommerce. For different or more complex headless commerce  implementations, visit to see new and exciting ways to compose headless architecture. 


Live Headless Shopify Sites:


Babylist allows expecting parents to share their wishlist. The site aggregates listings for the items on the wishlist so that customers can compare item optionality, pricing, and other variables to make sure that the best product is purchased. This type of resource-intensive compiling would compromise website performance without the lightning speed capabilities of headless. 

Kirrin Finch

A modern clothing boutique that specializes in outfitting nonbinary people with gender-defying styles, Kirrin Finch needs a highly executable and responsive website to serve their clients. Using headless Shopify gives their website speed and style to match their modern goals. 



A well-loved and respected liquor brand out of Amsterdam, they wanted to make the move to sell direct-to-consumer on an international basis. Needing to keep their trademark style in place while upgrading their website’s performance left them with only one option: a switch to headless architecture. 


Partake Foods

Partake Foods is a modern snack brand with modern sensibilities. Their mission is to provide healthy snacks directly to consumers. To have their presentation and performance be as cutting edge as their brand goal they platformed their site on Shopify to take advantage of headless architecture. 


Paul Valentine

A luxury item, accessory, and jewelry brand, Paul Valentine wanted to take their brand international. Going headless allowed them the frontend customization to have ecommerce storefronts in different languages with different sensibilities for every continent their products sold in. This optionality is unparalleled and made possible by headless architecture. 


Hiut Denim

An international brand specializing in jeans, Hiut Denim uses Shopify to make the most of their brand recognition and reputation for high-quality products. 

Grass Roots Farmers Co-op

This farmer’s co-op is dedicated to using scientific approaches to maximize small-scale farming sustainability across the United States. With intensive inventory demands and a desire for a stylish user experience, headless Shopify was the only solution that could keep up with the technical demands in high style.



For 20 years our strategists, engineers, and UX designers have been building leading-edge ecommerce sites. From the cloud to the edge, we’ll help you make smart decisions and speed time-to-value, whether you’re building from scratch or moving to a new platform.

Corra, a Publicis Sapient company, is the global commerce leader and SI helping brands and organizations grow by evaluating, building, and optimizing their digital commerce ecosystems. Our vast experience with composable and headless implementations speeds time-to-value and provides technical freedom to our clients. Our TotalCare managed services program provides gold-standard support, enhancements and ongoing commerce strategy. We are strategic thinkers, accomplished engineers, and award-winning experience designers. We believe outstanding customer experiences can’t exist without flawless technology, and that flawless technology is pointless without beautiful, human-centered design. Our clients are an integral part of our team. Together, we remove the obstacles that are limiting growth and discover new opportunities. We don’t rest until our clients achieve their full potential. Our clients’ KPIs are our KPIs. We have 20 years of experience in commerce technology, but we also know that customer expectations are constantly evolving. For this reason, we’ve built future-proof solutions and refined an agile execution process that helps our clients achieve more with less. As a Publicis Sapient company, Corra joins a global network spanning 20,000 people with 53 offices around the world enabling us to accelerate our clients’ businesses through designing and building the experiences and services their customers demand.

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