Check out the Youtube channel

Your First Time Hiring a Freelance Shopify Developer

Written by Eduard Fastovski

Mar 06, 2024

Where to find a Developer for small theme edits

I’ve been hearing complaints from store owners recently about how difficult it is to find a good (and honest) developer, with some feeling they are getting ripped off with bloated time estimates.

A recent example was a job where one developer quoted 2 hours, and another - for the same work - quoted 18 hours!

Sure, different developers have different skill levels and work at a different pace. I’d even understand if one quoted 3 hours and the other 6 hours. But 2 hours and 18 hours is too much of a gap.

If you’re new to Shopify and hiring freelancers. I do not recommend hiring someone through a freelance marketplace like Upwork or Fiverr. It’s very hit and miss. You might find someone good, or you might find someone who will misunderstand the project, who will make a mess of your code, or simply overcharge and rip you off.

Instead, If it’s your first time working with a developer, I recommend using an established company. I don’t mean a Shopify agency (they usually deal with bigger projects).

I mean companies that test freelancers’ skills and provide a platform through which you can find and hire them. It’s sort of a hybrid between an agency and a freelance marketplace like Upwork.

You still work with freelancers at cheaper rates than an agency, but the platform provides more security and certainty. You will get some experience hiring people, and get a feel for how much things should cost.

Here are two such options:


Storetasker connects you with developers, designers and marketers and you work with them one-on-one.

  • Ideal for bigger projects (8+ hours).
  • More types of freelancers (developers, designers, marketing).
  • Fixed-price quotes instead of hourly.
  • Direct one-on-one communication with your freelancer.


Heycarson focuses on affordability and fast turnaround time, and mostly give hourly time estimates. The estimates I’ve seen (for real stores) seem very fair. You are not guaranteed to work with the same developer each time, instead you have an account manager.

  • Cheaper than Storetasker.
  • Faster turnaround time than Storetasker.
  • Focused on smaller projects (1-2 hours).
  • Hourly time estimates.
  • Projects managed through an account manager.

There are other such companies, but I don’t have much experience with them. Sometimes your theme developer will also provide small development services. Check their website for details. For example, the developers of Palo Alto theme.

I think when you don’t have much experience with Shopify or hiring devs, then this is a safe option. You won’t get badly ripped off.

In the long term though, it’s still better to find a developer that sticks with you over several years. Much like finding a mechanic or barber that you trust. They will get to know your store, and your communication and workflow gets better over time.

How to actually find them? That’s a topic for another post. But my point today was that you can just start risk-free with one of these companies - Storetasker or Heycarson - and get some experience under your belt.

Once you’ve found a good developer, make sure you pay them well, otherwise, they will be forced to find better work. I don’t think you should negotiate or haggle rates with developers. You don’t do it with your dentist, do you? Make sure they are happy and do a good job.

A word of advice if you’re a beginner freelancer. Overcharging and bloating your time estimates will not work out in the long term. It’s much easier to work with happy clients, rather than feeling like every quote is a battle. Eventually, a retainer agreement is probably the best way to work for both parties. But you need to prove yourself and build a high level of trust first.

Want posts like this in your inbox? Subscribe to the newsletter.