Free Shopify Store for Liquid Theme Development

To begin Shopify Development with Liquid, we will need to create a store. The store will be free and through Shopify. There isn't a way to spin up a local server on your machine to begin coding, we will have to sign up for Shopify Partners to create our Liquid Theme Development store.

https://www.shopify.com/partners

On this page, click the "Join Now" button on the top right. Or enter your email address in the banner form and click "Join Now".

Shopify Partners Landing Page 

You will now have to create an account with Shopify, filling out the form with email, name, and password.

Create a Shopify account

You will then complete another form for account information: business name, primary email, and full address.

Account Information form - Shopify Partners

After filling the form and clicking "View your dashboard", you will land on your Shopify Partners page.

Shopify Partners Page

Now it's time to create your development store to begin your Shopify Liquid Programming. On the left sidebar menu, the very first option, click on "Stores". You will get a notice message about confirming your email address.

Stores Dashboard - Missing Information: Confirm email address

Go to your email client and confirm any emails or messages from Shopify. Then return to this page and refresh. Now you will have the "Add store" button enabled. 

Shopify Stores Dashboard - Add Store Button enabled

Let's click the "Add store".

Add store by type

This will bring you to options to create a "Development store" or a "Managed store". Choose "Development store", as you can see in the description this is to "Test apps or themes you create". After choosing your store type, new forms will appear to be filled out.

Store Login information

Add your store name. I suggest using "development-" as a prefix and then adding your name. You might have to enter a new name if the entered store name is taken. Then create a unique password.

Developer Preview store option

When you get to the "Developer Preview" option, leave it unchecked as this is for unreleased store functionality. If checked, this will cause issues with our beginner's crash course Liquid tutorial.

Next form will be your "Store address", but this should be filled in already. Lastly, we have the "Store purpose". Click "Test an app or theme".

Shopify Store purpose

Finally, click the "Save" button at the end of the page. Wait for Shopify to create your new store.

Success!

You have now made your Shopify development store to start learning about Liquid Programming. 

Shopify Store Dashboard

Now after clicking "Save", the page brings you to your store, but once you exit, how do you return to the store? There are two simple ways to do this. One is to add "/admin" at the end of your store's url, for example: your-store-url.myshopify.com/admin.

Another way is through your Shopify Partners dashboard, by clicking into the "Stores" link on the side menu again. Instead of a form you will see your newly created store. To get into your store's dashboard again, simply click the "Log in" link on the far right of the listed store name.

Store Dashboard with newly created store

Next, it is time to add a test theme to your Shopify store.

Joe Pichardo | Shopify Developer

About Joe Pichardo

Joe Pichardo is a Shopify Developer creating themes and apps to help other programmers succeed on the ecommerce platform.