How Shopify killed my successful apps business in 1 email message – Nivesh's blog
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How Shopify killed my successful apps business in 1 email message

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My Background


I started building Shopify apps in 2014 and built a recent sales notification app that became very popular. It got about 12k merchants within just a few months. Then I built a few more apps and all the apps were later acquired by a well known partner in Shopify.

The Birth of Sellify


Then in 2017, I started another business with name 'Sellify' and built a few apps including "ULTIMATE Cart Drawer". Shopify approved it in Jan 2019 and till date, it is one of the most feature-rich and developer friendly app for adding a cart drawer to any Shopify store.

The Rise of Sellify


Within 1.5 years of time, it got 1000 active merchants using the app in which 200 were only Shopify PLUS.

The Murder of Sellify


Just when the apps were doing well and COVID-19 was on its peak, Shopify made an announcement about removing my apps from the app store and locked me out of the platform.

It was almost 9PM IST and I had just reached the home after work when Shopify surprised me with this email:

Shopify's Email about removing my apps on August 19, 2020
Screenshot: Shopify's Email about removing my apps on August 19, 2020

They also made an announcement post on their community platform.

I was shocked to know that and was pretty much shaking. Took me a few minutes to get back to reality. I immediately reached out to everyone in my team and asked about the accusations. One of them was involved in something they accused us of and it was painful to know.

Reaching out to Shopify


I then let the responsible person go and sent this email to Shopify (By that time, our merchants had also received the similar emails and they were asking what was going on)

First ever email to Shopify on August 20, 2020
Screenshot: First ever email to Shopify on August 20, 2020

I waited for a few hours and sent out another email

Second email to Shopify on August 20, 2020
Screenshot: Second email to Shopify on August 20, 2020

Then the waiting


All I could do was wait so that's what I did. I waited for a few more hours, the next whole day and another and then another....

At last on 25th August 2020, I wrote another email and wrote a community post (Which Shopify took down within a few hours)

Another email to Shopify on August 25, 2020
Screenshot: Another email to Shopify on August 25, 2020

One Last Try


And one last try on 06 Sept 2020 with everything I had

Yet another email to Shopify on Sept 06, 2020
Screenshot: Yet another email to Shopify on Sept 06, 2020
Yet another email - Part 2/6
Screenshot: Yet another email - Part 2/6
Yet another email - Part 3/6
Screenshot: Yet another email - Part 3/6
Yet another email - Part 4/6
Screenshot: Yet another email - Part 4/6
Yet another email - Part 5/6
Screenshot: Yet another email - Part 5/6
Yet another email - Part 6/6
Screenshot: Yet another email - Part 6/6

And the wait continues...


I tried to be very patient and hopeful that someday they will reply and listen to me and try to understand my side of things and consider giving a second chance or suggesting some way to make it up to them.

It's been almost 2 years now and I didn't hear anything back from them and my business is long gone. I am not allowed to create new account on Shopify so not really possible to work with Shopify clients other than having merchant's own account for login to their store.

👉
Shopify said in their original email that they will send the remaining payout once the API access is revoked but they didn't pay me that or refund to the merchants so basically stole my money. The total amount they owe to me is around $15000.

I've got more coming...

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