Mailchimp’s Shopify integration removed, with both parties citing data and privacy concerns

Mailchimp Shopify

Marketing automation platform Mailchimp has asked Shopify to remove the Mailchimp for Shopify integration from its marketplace, due to privacy concerns that have emerged from Shopify’s updated terms of service.

“We refused to agree to terms that jeopardize our users’ privacy.”
– Mailchimp

In a statement released by Mailchimp, the company said Shopify’s new terms made it clear that Shopify was intending to control which providers its partners work with and how they conduct business, and “jeopardize” Mailchimp’s users’ privacy.

“For months, we’ve been trying to work with Shopify on terms that would be fair and equitable for both of our businesses. Throughout these negotiations, we refused to agree to terms that jeopardize our users’ privacy and require us to hand over customer data acquired outside of Shopify,” Mailchimp’s statement read. “From our perspective, that’s not our data to share.”

Related: Shopify reaches milestone, surpassing $1 billion in total revenue in 2018

“The data captured on behalf of our merchants belongs to those merchants, it’s as simple as that.”
– Shopify

While the native integration has been removed from Shopify’s marketplace, it will continue to function for existing connected users until May 12, when Shopify’s new terms of service take place. At that time, customers can choose from a few third-party integrations to connect their accounts. Mailchimp said the company believes small businesses are best served when they can choose which technology they use to run their businesses, adding that Mailchimp integrates with over 150 different apps and platforms.

For its part, Shopify has also released its own public statement, claiming that the Canadian ecommerce giant has had “growing concerns about Mailchimp’s app because of the poor merchant experience and their refusal to respect our Partner Program Agreement” over the last 18 months.

“Our terms require app partners to share all important data back to the merchant using Shopify’s API to help them run their businesses,” the statement reads, alleging that Mailchimp’s refusal to synchronize customer information captured on Shopify merchants’ online stores and email opt-out preferences prevents those merchants from having “accurate, complete insight into their businesses and customers.”

“As a result, our merchants, other apps, and partner ecosystem can’t reliably serve their customers or comply with privacy legislation. We will never put our merchants’ trust on the line like that. The data captured on behalf of our merchants belongs to those merchants, it’s as simple as that.”


Isabelle Kirkwood

Isabelle Kirkwood

Isabelle is a Vancouver-based writer with 5+ years of experience in communications and journalism and a lifelong passion for telling stories. For over two years, she has reported on all sides of the Canadian startup ecosystem, from landmark venture deals to public policy, telling the stories of the founders putting Canadian tech on the map.