A simple boilerplate package for creating Shopify embedded apps with the Elixir Phoenix framework.


The package can be installed by adding shopifex to your list of dependencies in mix.exs: (note, OTP 22 or greater required)

def deps do
    {:shopifex, "~> 1.1"}


Run the install script

This will install all of the supported Shopifex features.

mix shopifex.install

Follow the output config.ex and router.ex instructions from the install script.

Run migrations

mix ecto.migrate

Update Shopify app details

Replace tunnel-url with your own where applicable.

  • Set "App URL" to
  • Add & to your app's "Allowed redirection URL(s)"
  • Add your Shopify app's API key and API secret key to config :shopifex, api_key: "your-api-key", secret: "your-api-secret"

Manual Installation

Create the shop schema where the installation data will be stored:

mix phx.gen.schema Shop shops url:string access_token:string scope:string
mix ecto.migrate

Add the :shopifex config settings to your config.ex. More config details here

config :shopifex,
  app_name: "MyApp",
  shop_schema: MyApp.Shop,
  web_module: MyAppWeb,
  repo: MyApp.Repo,
  redirect_uri: "",
  reinstall_uri: "",
  webhook_uri: "",
  scopes: "read_inventory,write_inventory,read_products,write_products,read_orders",
  api_key: "shopifyapikey123",
  secret: "shopifyapisecret456",
  webhook_topics: ["app/uninstalled"] # These are automatically subscribed on a store upon install

Update your endpoint.ex to include the custom body parser. This is necessary for HMAC validation to work.

plug Plug.Parsers,
  parsers: [:urlencoded, :multipart, :json],
  pass: ["*/*"],
  body_reader: {ShopifexWeb.CacheBodyReader, :read_body, []},
  json_decoder: Phoenix.json_library()

Add this line near the top of router.ex to include the Shopifex pipelines

require ShopifexWeb.Routes

Now the following pipelines are accessible:

  • :shopify_session -> Validates request (HMAC header/param or token param) and makes session information available via Shopifex.Plug API. Also removes iFrame blocking headers so app can render in Shopify admin.
  • :shopify_webhook -> Validates Shopify webhook requests HMAC and makes session information available via Shopifex.Plug API.
  • :shopify_admin_link -> Validates Shopify admin link & bulk action link requests and makes session information available via Shopifex.Plug API.
  • :shopify_api -> Ensures that a valid Shopify session token or Shopifex token are present in Authorization header. Useful for async requests between your SPA front end and Shopifex backend.
  • :shopifex_browser -> Same as your normal :browser pipeline, except it calls Shopifex.Plug.LoadInIframe.

Now add this basic example of these plugs in action in router.ex. These endpoints need to be added to your Shopify app whitelist


# Include all auth (when Shopify requests to render your app in an iframe), installation and update routes 

# Endpoints accessible within the Shopify admin panel iFrame.
# Don't include this scope block if you are creating a SPA.
scope "/", MyAppWeb do
  pipe_through [:shopifex_browser, :shopify_session]

  get "/", PageController, :index

# Make your webhook endpoint look like this
scope "/webhook", MyAppWeb do
  pipe_through [:shopify_webhook]

  post "/", WebhookController, :action

# Place your admin link endpoints in here
scope "/admin-links", MyAppWeb do
  pipe_through [:admin_links, :shopify_webhook]

  get "/do-a-thing", AdminLinkController, :do_a_thing

Create a new controller called auth_controller.ex to handle the initial iFrame load and installation

defmodule MyAppWeb.AuthController do
  use MyAppWeb, :controller
  use ShopifexWeb.AuthController

  # Thats it! Validation, installation are now handled for you :)
  # Optionally, override the `after_install` callback
  def after_install(conn, shop) do
    # TODO: send yourself an e-mail
    # follow default behaviour.
    super(conn, shop)

Setting up your application as a SPA? Read this before continuing Single Page Applications

create another controller called webhook_controller.ex to handle incoming Shopify webhooks (optional)

defmodule MyAppWeb.WebhookController do
  use MyAppWeb, :controller
  use ShopifexWeb.WebhookController

  # add as many handle_topic/3 functions here as you like! This basic one handles app uninstallation
  def handle_topic(conn, shop, "app/uninstalled") do

    |> send_resp(200, "success")

  # Mandatory Shopify shop data erasure GDPR webhook. Simply delete the shop record
  def handle_topic(conn, shop, "shop/redact") do

    |> send_resp(204, "")

  # Mandatory Shopify customer data erasure GDPR webhook. Simply delete the shop (customer) record
  def handle_topic(conn, shop, "customers/redact") do

    |> send_resp(204, "")

  # Mandatory Shopify customer data request GDPR webhook.
  def handle_topic(conn, _shop, "customers/data_request") do
    # Send an email of the shop data to the customer.
    |> send_resp(202, "Accepted")

Maintaining session between page loads for server-rendered applications

As browsers continue to restrict cookies, cookies become more unreliable as a method for maintaining a session within an iFrame. To address this, Shopify recommends passing a JWT session token back and forth between requests.

Shopifex makes a token accessible with Shopifex.Plug.session_token(conn) in any request which passes through a :shopify_* router pipeline.

Ensure there is a token parameter sent along in any requests which you would like to maintain session between.

EEx template link:

<%= link "home", to: Routes.page_path(@conn, :index, %{token: Shopifex.Plug.session_token(conn)}) %>

EEx template form:

<%= form_for :foo, Routes.foo_path(MyApp.Endpoint, :new, %{token: Shopifex.Plug.session_token(@conn)}), fn f -> %>
  <%= submit "Submit" %>
<% end %>

Update app permissions

You can also update the app permissions after installation. To do so, first you have to add to Shopify's whitelist.

To add e.g. the read_customers scope, you can do so by redirecting them to the following example url:


Add payment guards to routes

This system allows you to use the Shopifex.Plug.PaymentGuard plug. If the merchant does not have an active grant associated with the named guard, it will redirect them to a plan selection page, allow them to pay, and handle the payment callback all automatically. I am working on the admin panel where you can register Plan objects which grant premium_plan (for example) - but for now these need to be entered manually into the database.

Generate the schemas

mix phx.gen.schema Shops.Plan plans name:string price:string features:array:string grants:array:string test:boolean usages:integer type:string

mix phx.gen.schema Shops.Grant grants shop:references:shops charge_id:integer grants:array:string remaining_usages:integer total_usages:integer

Add the config options:

config :my_app,
  payment_guard: MyApp.Shops.PaymentGuard,
  grant_schema: MyApp.Shops.Grant,
  plan_schema: MyApp.Shops.Plan,
  payment_redirect_uri: ""

Serve the Shopifex assets for the plans selection page. Add the following to endpoint.ex:

# Serve at "/shopifex-assets" the static files from shopifex.
plug Plug.Static,
  at: "/shopifex-assets",
  from: :shopifex,
  gzip: false,
  only: ~w(css fonts images js favicon.ico robots.txt)

Create the payment guard module:

defmodule MyApp.Shops.PaymentGuard do
  use Shopifex.PaymentGuard

Create a new payment controller:

defmodule MyAppWeb.PaymentController do
  use MyAppWeb, :controller
  use ShopifexWeb.PaymentController

Add payment routes to router.ex:


To manage plans, I recommend using kaffy admin package

Now you can protect routes or controller actions with the Shopifex.Plug.PaymentGuard plug. Here is an example of it in action on an admin link

defmodule MyAppWeb.AdminLinkController do
  use MyAppWeb, :controller
  require Logger

  plug Shopifex.Plug.PaymentGuard, "premium_plan" when action in [:premium_function]
  def premium_function(conn, _params) do
    # Wow, much premium.
    |> send_resp(200, "success")

Single Page Applications

SPA Shopify applications are also supported with Shopifex for developers who wish to host their front-end application separately from the back-end. This approach takes advantage of Shopify session tokens.

Adjust your router.ex file. You may notice some routes are no longer necessary compared to the quick-start guide.


# These routes will take care of installation/update

# API routes for your SPA to hit with the axios instance
scope "/api", MyAppWeb do
  pipe_through [:shopify_api]
  # An endpoint which your SPA can call on load to get whatever initialization data your app needs.
  # The options macro is required to allow CORS requests on the route.
  options "/initialize", AuthController, :initialize
  get "/initialize", AuthController, :initialize
  # Add authenticated routes here as needed.

And for that /initialize endpoint, consider this adjustment to MyAppWeb.AuthController and update based on your needs. Perhaps you also want to serialize and return some more information needed by your SPA at startup.

defmodule MyAppWeb.AuthController do
  use MyAppWeb, :controller
  use ShopifexWeb.AuthController
  def initialize(conn, _params) do
    shop = Guardian.Plug.current_resource(conn)
    render(conn, "initialize.json", %{shop: shop})

Now, integrate Shopify session tokens into the Axios instance of your SPA. Then from your SPA:

import createApp from '@shopify/app-bridge';
// Import your Shopify session_token axios instance based on the Shopify session token axios instructions
import instance from './axios-instance';

const urlParams = new URLSearchParams(;
const shopOrigin = urlParams.get('shop'); = createApp({

// Use your axios instance to call the /api/initialize endpoint
const sessionData = await instance.get('/api/initialize');
// Now you will have access to the current shop and Bob's-yer-uncle!