Shopify (SHOP) - Get Shopify, Inc. Class A Report allows online merchants to sell physical goods both by offering website and app store creation tools and through offering back-end fulfillment capacity.
Now, Shopify merchants will be able to create non-fungible tokens (NFTs) through an app provided in the company's app store through a third-party blockchain company, GigiLabs.
The app, which will be available to eligible Shopify Plus customers, allows merchants "to create and sell NFTs "on their Shopify storefront in minutes without any prior development or blockchain experience," according to GigiLabs.
NFTs Are a New Frontier
NFTs are essentially digital collectibles. They're unique digital assets that a company can sell either as a one-off or in limited quantities (kind of like numbered prints of physical artwork).
Total potential sales for NFTs produce wildly different speculative guesses, but their sales volume jumped to "$10.7 billion in the third quarter of 2021," Reuters reported. That's "up more than eightfold from the previous quarter, according to data from market tracker DappRadar, as the frenzy for crypto assets reached new highs."
Shopify sees offering NFT tools as part of its overall approach to serving its merchant customers.
“Our growing NFT app ecosystem demonstrates our commitment to offering merchants an accessible approach to selling digital assets directly through their Shopify stores,” said Director of Product Robleh Jama.
How Will Shopify's NFTs Work?
GigiLabs app allows Shopify Plus merchants to mint and sell NFTs on the Flow Blockchain.
Flow, GigiLabs explained, is "the world’s fastest-growing blockchain with over 2 million accounts, over 17 million individual NFTs minted, and more than 10 million secondary market NFT sale transactions."
Infinite Objects, one of two companies to test the app for GigiLabs, has already begun selling NFTs on its Shopify storefront.
“Infinite Objects believes that moving images should be appreciated the same way posters, prints, and photographs have been for decades,” said CEO Joe Saavedra. “With the GigLabs app, we’ll be able to add NFTs to our content offerings in a seamless end-to-end and customized experience.”
NFTs have been used by artists, musicians, sports leagues, and many others.
"One of the main reasons NFTs are important to brands is that they can be used to represent digital files, such as art, audio, and video. They are so versatile, they can be used to represent other forms of creative work like virtual real estate, virtual worlds, fashion, and much more," wrote Neil Patel, a business growth expert.
NFTs can have real value, but it's more like the way any collectible has value. Beanie B Babies or Pokemon cards are worth what the market says they are — there's no actual value.