The Shopify Platform does a lot on its own. However, there are cases where a shopowner is going to want some kind of functionality that the baseline platform can't deliver. That's okay, because we've got apps!
Shopify provides an API that allows you to programmatically perform almost any task that a Shopify shopowner can perform using the admin panel for a shop. This lets you write Shopify apps which shopowners can use to extend the capabilities of their Shopify stores. Some apps make life easier for customers, some help shopowners run their stores, some do both at the same time.
Shopify also provides the App Store, a marketplace where app developers can put their apps up for sale to the 16,000 or so Shopify shopowners in our ecosystem. It puts your apps in a place that's easy to find and browse, right where potential customers can easily see (and hopefully buy) them.
And finally, Shopify has an App Wishlist. This list is going to be a web application someday, but in the meantime, it's a page on our wiki that lists the apps that have been requested by both users and Shopify. I wrote about it earlier, and since then, the list has been updated -- it now has been broken into three categories:
- High Priority Apps. Useful apps for which there is a lot of demand and are feasible using the current Shopify API. If you're looking for an idea for an app to build, check the ones in this section first!
- Lower Priority Apps. Apps for which there's some demand, are somewhat useful and are feasible using the current Shopify API. You could build an app based on these ideas if you like, but we seriously recommend building one from the High Priority list instead.
- Not Recommended for Development. For the most part, these are apps that are currently not feasible using the current Shopify API. They might also be not very useful. As the name of this category suggests, we recommend that you not develop these apps.
I'll be going through this list regularly, polishing up the entries in the list.