Tips & Tutorials

The Power of Urgency – How to Add a Countdown Timer on Shopify

The Power of Urgency – How to Add a Countdown Timer on Shopify

Tick-tock, tick-tock. Can you hear that? It's an offer going away if you don't buy now. Or soon. The idea of missing a deal on something you like pushes you to take action. That's urgency at its finest. And, if you're running a Shopify store, you can tap into it to sell more.

How much do you think this could bring in conversions? 200% on average, according to a Sales Cycle's case study on Countdown Timers During Black Friday. It would depend on the industry, price point, and season. But it works most of the time. Fortunately, the Shopify App Store has +350 sales countdown timer apps available. Enough options for you to choose from.

In this blog post, you'll learn...

A) How to add a countdown timer to Shopify

B) The actual benefits of sales countdown timers

C) An example of a Shopify store you can use for inspo

Sense of urgency, here we go.

Real quick: What is a countdown timer on Shopify?

Like on any other platform, a countdown bar/timer is a marketing feature that shows the time left from a specified time to zero. The goal? Encourage customers to buy soon. It displays the remaining time in days, hours, minutes, and seconds. And updates continuously as the time ticks away. You can place Shopify countdown timers on product, collection, and cart pages.

How do I add a countdown timer to Shopify?

There are two ways of doing so: with code and without it (meaning, a Shopify app). So when it comes to how to put a countdown timer in Shopify, one option is more geared towards code-savvy people, and the other is for the rest of us non-coding entrepreneurs.

Let's take a look at both.

Shopify countdown clock with code

This method is for merchants comfortable with code. It requires knowledge of HTML to create the timer's structure, CSS to style it, and JavaScript to make it function. Also, you'd have to edit the timer code manually every single time you want to change the date/time.


  1. Open your Shopify admin. Go to Online Store > Themes.
  2. Choose a theme to edit. Click on the three dots (•••) > Edit code.
  3. In the Snippets folder > you'll have to Add a new snippet.
  4. Name your file: countdown-timer.
  5. Copy the code below and paste it into the previous snippet.
  6. Save the changes you've made and publish the sales countdown timer.
{% if end_date != blank %} 
 <div class="timer"> 
   {% if title != blank %}<h4 class="timer__title">{{ title }}</h4>{% endif %} 
   <div class="timer-display"> 
     <div class="timer-block"> 
      <span class="timer-block__num js-timer-days">00</span> 
       <span class="timer-block__unit">Days</span> 
     <div class="timer-block"> 
       <span class="timer-block__num js-timer-hours">00</span> 
       <span class="timer-block__unit">Hours</span> 
     <div class="timer-block"> 
       <span class="timer-block__num js-timer-minutes">00</span> 
       <span class="timer-block__unit">Minutes</span> 
     <div class="timer-block"> 
       <span class="timer-block__num js-timer-seconds">00</span> 
       <span class="timer-block__unit">Seconds</span> 
   .timer { 
     background: #f6fafd; 
     padding: 10px; 
     margin: 10px 0; 
   .timer--expired { 
     display: none; 
   .timer__title { 
     @extend .paragraph; 
     text-align: center; 
   .timer-display { 
     display: -webkit-box; 
     display: -ms-flexbox; 
     display: flex; 
     -ms-flex-wrap: wrap; 
     flex-wrap: wrap; 
     -webkit-box-pack: justify; 
         -ms-flex-pack: justify; 
             justify-content: space-between; 
     margin-top: 5px; 
  .timer-block { 
     position: relative; 
     width: 25%; 
     padding: 0 10px; 
     &:not(:last-child):after { 
       content: ':'; 
       position: absolute; 
       right: 0; 
       top: 3px; 
   .timer-block__unit { 
     display: block; 
     text-align: center; 
 <script type="text/javascript"> 
   var second = 1000, 
     minute = second * 60, 
    hour = minute * 60, 
    day = hour * 24; 
   var countDown = new Date('{{- end_date -}}').getTime(), 
       x = setInterval(function() { 
       var now = new Date().getTime(), 
           distance = countDown - now; 
     document.querySelector('.js-timer-days').innerText = Math.floor(distance / (day)), 
     document.querySelector('.js-timer-hours').innerText = Math.floor((distance % (day)) / (hour)), 
     document.querySelector('.js-timer-minutes').innerText = Math.floor((distance % (hour)) / (minute)), 
     document.querySelector('.js-timer-seconds').innerText = Math.floor((distance % (minute)) / second); 
    }, second) 
 {% endif %}

To display the countdown timer, include the snippet file anywhere you want to show it by pasting the following code into your theme. Make sure to change the date to your desired countdown date.

{% include 'countdown-timer',
title: "Special Offer End In",
end_date: "Dec 31, 2023"

If you're more like a visual person, check out this coding tutorial to learn how to make a countdown on Shopify. Shout-out to Andrew from EcomExperts for making this video.

Not even a little into code? Alternatively, we recommend either using Shopify countdown timer apps or seeking assistance on the Shopify Expert Directory.

Pros of adding a timer with code:

  • Customization – Full control over the design and functionality of the countdown timer.
  • Affordability – As long as you know how to do it, you don't have to pay for anything.
  • Faster load times – Compared to third-party apps, code is often lighter and faster.

Cons of adding a timer with code:

  • Technical knowledge – Specifically HTML, CSS, and JavaScript.
  • Time-consuming – Making a countdown timer from scratch may take significant time.
  • Maintenance – Once the timer is in place, you'll need to update it regularly.

Shopify countdown timer with app

This is the easiest way to add a sales countdown timer bar or an embedded banner. Because the only thing you have to do is add a Shopify app. And then, you access all the features you need to trigger that sense of urgency and ultimately boost sales.


  1. Go to the Shopify App Store and install a Shopify app with a countdown timer (like Attrac 😉).
  2. Configure the timer: countdown type, timer style, messaging, and behavior.
  3. Add the timer to the specific page you want (product, page, or collection).
  4. Preview it to make sure it's good to go, and hit Save.
sales countdown timer shopify app

That's it! It's a pretty straightforward process to add a sales countdown timer.

Pros of adding a timer with a Shopify app:

  • Easy to install – Adding an app doesn't need technical knowledge.
  • Time-saving – Much faster compared to doing it with code. Just a few clicks.
  • Regular updates – So it works properly and remains compatible with Shopify.
  • Friendly UI – An intuitive interface makes it easy to set up and manage the timer.

Cons of adding a timer with a Shopify app:

  • Advanced extra features are available under paid plans.
  • Limited control over the design and functionality.

Do countdown timers still work to increase sales?

Countdown timers work. In most cases, conversions go from 200-400%. But performance depends on the product, audience, and marketing strategy. There's no one-size-fits-all approach. Experimentation is key since each customer base responds differently.

Scarcity and urgency aren't something new. Sales and marketing are based on pure psychological principles. Think of presale tickets for concerts, restaurant reservations, limited editions of items, and so on. Sound familiar? It's the same in an eCommerce context.

At the end of the day, it's all about how humans interact with the things they're exposed to.

Now, where do Shopify countdown timer apps make sense as an ally for store owners?

  • Daily deals
  • Flash sales
  • Black Friday
  • Holiday sales
  • Cyber Monday
  • Product launches
  • Limited-time offers
  • End-of-season sales

To get the best results, it's a good idea to use your Shopify countdown timer as part of a bigger plan and iterate to see what works best for your business.

And one more thing: don't overdo countdown timer promotions. Try to keep timers as transparent and straightforward as possible. Underestimating customers and believing they won't notice that your 24-hour offer will actually be for one week is not a very ethical practice. Plus, it can hurt your reputation and harm your long-term relationship with buyers.

Make sure someone has enough time to decide without getting bombarded with, "this deal is closing in 15...12...9 minutes!" Countdown timers should add an extra layer of urgency to encourage potential shoppers to buy, not scare them off by having too little time.

Benefits of having a sales countdown timer Shopify

Nothing lasts forever. This is why creating urgency and FOMO is part of your magical sales recipe. Here are the top three benefits of using a timer in your Shopify store.

Amplifies urgency

Creating a subtle "It's now or never" atmosphere with a bit of pressure gets people to act. The countdown timer Shopify enhances the hype around promotions and discounts. And therefore, it increases the likelihood of customers buying before the opportunity is gone.

create sense of urgency example with countdown timers
Source: GIPHY

Creates FOMO

Oh, the sweet fear of missing out. Such a classic. We're talking here about one of the strongest decision-making drivers of this generation. According to OptinMonster, 60% of millennials say they impulse buy after experiencing FOMO. Most often within the first 24 hours.

You play in a field full of what-ifs:

  • "What if I don't buy this product now, and it's sold out later?"
  • "What if I can't find a better price elsewhere for this item?"
  • "What if I don't take advantage of this sale and miss out on savings?"
  • "What if I don't have something that everyone else has?"

Thanks to a virtual clock, you can transform normal products into offers that shoppers won't want to miss. All at no cost with the right free countdown timer app.

fear of missing out fomo example timers
Source: GIPHY

Multiplies sales

This is the result of the Urgency + FOMO mix. With techniques like limited-time discounts, exclusive offers, and free shipping, you can use a countdown timer to supercharge your sales. Remember – unless you hire a Shopify Expert – a timer costs zero dollars.

countdown timers benefits
Source: GIPHY

Example of a Shopify countdown timer in action

For a limited time, this vanilla beans shop is offering a "Buy 2 Get 1 Free" promotion with a countdown timer feature. Shoppers get three packs of Indonesian bourbon vanilla powder for the price of two. That way, vanilla lovers can stock up on high-quality organic beans at a 33% discount. All for recipes, ice cream, baked goods, and desserts.

sales countdown timer bar example

Is Attrac the best Shopify countdown timer?

What makes a tool the best countdown timer depends largely on what you're looking for. Attrac is a marketing announcement bar/banner app with an advanced sales countdown timer. It has three types of timers—fixed date, duration, and runs daily. And a Max-plan scheduling feature to start, show, and hide the countdown timer as needed.

To wrap things up, you can add timer bars to Shopify with an app or code. No matter the method, countdown timers do the work to sell ~200% more online by promoting urgency. Besides the FOMO, it also builds anticipation and encourages shoppers to act faster.

Get a high-performing sales countdown timer with Attrac Shopify App.

Install Attract, the ultimate Shopify marketing app to boost your sales.Install Attract, the ultimate Shopify marketing app to boost your sales.
Install Attract, the ultimate Shopify marketing app to boost your sales.
Latest Posts
Facebook Shop vs. Shopify: Ecommerce Platform Comparison
Industry Insights
February 24, 2024
minute read
Weebly vs Shopify: Comprehensive Comparison
Industry Insights
February 24, 2024
minute read
Top 10 Shopify Alternatives for Ecommerce in 2024
Industry Insights
February 24, 2024
minute read
View all posts