At Supercycle we believe that consumer adoption of rental depends upon fine-tuned and integrated e-commerce experiences.

Tightly pairing our software with Shopify means that each Supercycle merchant benefits from over , and manages their inventory and marketing from the same place, whilst delivering an integrated rental & retail experience to their customers.

Once you install and pin the Supercycle app, you have total control directly from Shopify Admin

Supercycle’s building blocks

Inventory and serialisation

Supercycle uses your Shopify products and variants but adds serialisation. Where Shopify’s inventory would know that you have 3 of a SKU, Supercycle knows about 3 individual items or serials.

To serialise items and use them in your rental methods, you must import them into Supercycle. Once products are imported inventory is managed by Supercycle, not Shopify.

Serialisation is important in rental because:

  • You need to know that the correct item has been despatched to and received back from a customer.
  • You’re able to record exactly what’s happened to an item over its lifetime.
  • You can temporarily take invidual items out of circulation (i.e. for damage) and immediately understand the impact on bookings.
  • If you have consignment inventory, you need to attribute revenue to the correct consignor.

Ally, our allocation algorithm, automatically assigns new bookings to the most efficient item, giving the greatest availability to future customers.

Items have their own status, condition and event history. These are summarised on an item’s page in Supercycle Admin.


Supercycle uses your Shopify customers but adds extra information about their rentals and rental history under the Supercycle app.

You should use Shopify to manage things like their contact information and Supercycle to manage the items they have on rental or their membership plan, for example.

Orders, bookings and fulfillments

Supercycle uses native Shopify orders. Whatever a customer checks out with becomes their order, which could be a mixture of different rental products with different rental methods, plus retail items.

If an order contains rental products with different rental dates, we split items with the same rental dates into fulfillments and hold the fulfillment until the date it needs dispatching. Fulfillments are also native Shopify functionality and help make sure you don’t send rental items too early (or forget about parts of a rental order).

On top of this, Supercycle adds bookings. Each rental booking contains one rental item and tracks dates and times of fulfillment, delivery, rental start and end, and receival back to your warehouse. Bookings are used to understand likely clashes caused by things like delays in other bookings or damaged products.


Supercycle handles rental returns itself, outside Shopify returns. This is because Shopify links returns in a 1:1 relationship with orders, but we know rental customers like to rent to and from different dates at the same time, particularly if you offer membership rental.

When a customer requests to return an item(s) in their rental portal, we create a new rental return in Supercycle that is not linked to an order.

Handling rental returns inside Supercycle also means you’re able to do things like trigger charges to customers and set statuses of items based on the condition they’re received in in a return.

Membership plans

When you create a membership plan in Supercycle, we create a corresponding product in Shopify. Depending on how you display your collections, you may need to hide this from view on your store.

When a customer chooses a plan on the plans page, Supercycle adds the plan’s product to their cart. Customers check out with the plan using the regular checkout. It’s that simple (kind of)!

A customer’s first membership plan payment is billed in the checkout. From then, Supercycle initiated billing attempts for membership plans through Shopify’s native subscription billing functionality - no need to store card details or use a different payment portal. Membership plan payments generate an ‘order’ that can be seen in your Shopify Admin.

Supercycle manages a customer’s membership via metafields on their account.

Calendar rental periods

If you’ve tried to use other apps for calendar rental, the app has probably created variants on the Shopify product. Variants are sacred - they represent real things like colour, size and condition. A 4 day rental is not a different item to an 8 day rental, so it shouldn’t be a variant. This only causes inventory management problems!

When you create rental periods and prices for calendar rental products in Supercycle, we create selling plans (think price points) on the product in Shopify.

When a customer adds the item using the Supercycle app block, we automatically add the correct selling plan to the customer’s cart. It’s simple and seamless.

App blocks

Supercycle uses app blocks to bring Supercycle functionality into your theme without the need for custom code. You’ll learn about enabling the Supercycle Engine and adding app blocks to pages during installation.

Our app blocks are as flexible as possible but we know that sometimes you’ll want to create something more bespoke. There are Liquid snippets in our components documentation for this - and we’re always happy to add more snippets for new use cases.