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Shopify API

The Shopify API gem allows Ruby developers to programmatically access the admin section of Shopify stores.

The API is implemented as JSON over HTTP using all four verbs (GET/POST/PUT/DELETE). Each resource, like Order, Product, or Collection, has its own URL and is manipulated in isolation. In other words, we’ve tried to make the API follow the REST principles as much as possible.



All API usage happens through Shopify applications, created by either shop owners for their own shops, or by Shopify Partners for use by other shop owners:

For more information and detailed documentation about the API visit


To easily install or upgrade to the latest release, use gem

gem install shopify_api

Getting Started

ShopifyAPI uses ActiveResource to communicate with the REST web service. ActiveResource has to be configured with a fully authorized URL of a particular store first. To obtain that URL you can follow these steps:

  1. First create a new application in either the partners admin or your store admin. For a private App you'll need the API_KEY and the PASSWORD otherwise you'll need the API_KEY and SHARED_SECRET.

  2. For a private App you just need to set the base site url as follows:

    shop_url = "https://#{API_KEY}:#{PASSWORD}" = shop_url

    That's it, you're done, skip to step 6 and start using the API!

    For a partner app you will need to supply two parameters to the Session class before you instantiate it:

    ShopifyAPI::Session.setup({:api_key => API_KEY, :secret => SHARED_SECRET})
  3. In order to access a shop's data, apps need an access token from that specific shop. This is a two-stage process. Before interacting with a shop for the first time an app should redirect the user to the following URL:


    with the following parameters:

  • client_id– Required – The API key for your app
  • scope – Required – The list of required scopes (explained here:
  • redirect_uri – Optional – The URL that the merchant will be sent to once authentication is complete. Defaults to the URL specified in the application settings and must be the same host as that URL.

    We've added the create_permission_url method to make this easier, first instantiate your session object:

    session ="")

    Then call:

    scope = ["write_products"]
    permission_url = session.create_permission_url(scope)

    or if you want a custom redirect_uri:

    permission_url = session.create_permission_url(scope, "")
  1. Once authorized, the shop redirects the owner to the return URL of your application with a parameter named 'code'. This is a temporary token that the app can exchange for a permanent access token. Make the following call:


    with the following parameters:

  • client_id – Required – The API key for your app
  • client_secret – Required – The shared secret for your app
  • code – Required – The token you received in step 3

    and you'll get your permanent access token back in the response.

    There is a method to make the request and get the token for you. Pass all the params received from the previous call and the method will verify the params, extract the temp code and then request your token:

    token = session.request_token(params)

    This method will save the token to the session object and return it. For future sessions simply pass the token in when creating the session object:

    session ="", token)
  1. The session must be activated before use:

  2. Now you're ready to make authorized API requests to your shop! Data is returned as ActiveResource instances:

    shop = ShopifyAPI::Shop.current
    # Get a specific product
    product = ShopifyAPI::Product.find(179761209)
    # Create a new product
    new_product =
    new_product.title = "Burton Custom Freestlye 151"
    new_product.product_type = "Snowboard"
    new_product.vendor = "Burton"
    # Update a product
    product.handle = "burton-snowboard"

    Alternatively, you can use #temp to initialize a Session and execute a command which also handles temporarily setting

    products = ShopifyAPI::Session.temp("", token) { ShopifyAPI::Product.find(:all) }
  3. If you want to work with another shop, you'll first need to clear the session:



This package also includes the shopify executable to make it easy to open up an interactive console to use the API with a shop.

  1. Obtain a private API key and password to use with your shop (step 2 in "Getting Started")

  2. Use the shopify script to save the credentials for the shop to quickly log in.

    shopify add yourshopname

    Follow the prompts for the shop domain, API key and password.

  3. Start the console for the connection.

    shopify console
  4. To see the full list of commands, type:

    shopify help


ActiveResource is inherently non-threadsafe, because class variables like and ActiveResource::Base.headers are shared between threads. This can cause conflicts when using threaded libraries, like Sidekiq.

We have a forked version of ActiveResource that stores these class variables in threadlocal variables. Using this forked version will allow ShopifyAPI to be used in a threaded environment.

To enable threadsafety with ShopifyAPI, add the following to your Gemfile. There are various threadsafe tags that you can use, depending on which version of rails you are using.

gem 'activeresource', git: 'git://', tag: '4.2-threadsafe'
gem 'shopify_api', '>= 3.2.1'

Using Development Version

Download the source code and run:

rake install

Additional Resources

API Docs:

Ask questions on the forums:


Copyright (c) 2014 "Shopify Inc.". See LICENSE for details.