UE4 Car / Vehicle Configurator connection to Shopify Store


For a future client project I’m going to create a high-quality 3D vehicle configurator for use on a 55" - 65" touchscreen table in car stores. The client will also have an online store (Shopify), where customers can configure and order the vehicle from the website. This online store is planned to be the main hub of taking orders, sending order information out to the factory, suppliers and so on. It is being created right now from a web-agency.
My UE4 configurator is there to be a special experience when you go to the car store instead of just sitting at home and ordering the vehicle online. You will be able to experience and learn about the vehicle in a very appealing and fun way.
So far the basics.

My “problem” is now: Is there a way (maybe some “turn-key-solution”) to connect a UE4 application with the shopify store?
So when the customer configures the vehicle with these tires, these addons - UE4 tells the shopify store to make that order?
I’m pretty well versed in all things 3D and UE4, scripting in Blueprints only (no coding experience unfortunately), but pretty new to Shopify. I thought that maybe product-codes stringed together to a link, that places all of the items in the shopping cart, could be a solution. I mean, we can open links from within a UE4 application, even within the built-in browser widget in UMG. But I have no idea if Shopify supports something likes this, or if there might be an easier way.

Tagging @astonish in here, since you created the “Thread Studio” app for Shopify, didn’t you? Maybe you or someone from your team has some insights?
Or maybe anyone else have already had experience with creating car-/vehicle configurators and might tell about their solutions.

Thanks in advance!

Not really. You are looking at manual input or having to hire an actual developer that works both websites and Unreal in order to create a custom API that passes the calls over to the shopify side (over a secure ssl connection if possible).

likely, the hardest or impossible part is assigning the modified product to the client account. Especially with the latest API changes they made.

Btw, why shopify of all things? They make a killer percentage off sales. You would be $way$ better off with a custom implementation of just about anything:

Zencart, big commerce, magento, ucommerce, hell even WordPress with WooCommerce is a better idea (albeit worse for who’s making it work).

Also, Auto retailers have their own merchant providers or loan backers… any of the above software can be made to accept payments with a wide variety of electronic systems which are also PCI compliant - in all likely-hood some of the merchant providers that car dealers use would also have pre-made gateways that can work with those software.

Thank you for replying,

That’s what I thought. Unfortunately it seems, this is not an option.

The agency who is also in charge of the website is tasked with the creation of the online shop, chose Shopify as their platform. I do not know exactly about the Shopify percentage off sales. That is ultimately something the client has to decide for themselves. I agree with you that a custom solution would be a way better idea. I think it’s a quesiton of resources on the agency’s end.

That’s what I thought too. There must be some sort of a standard for these kinds of things. So I would be grateful for anyone sharing their experiences or insights about this.

Thanks for your insights on this so far.

I have also found out about Shopify shopping cart perma-links: Cart - Use permalinks to pre-load the cart - Shopify Community
This seems to be a way to put items into the shopping cart with a URL and direct the user directly to the payment process. I could do this from within UE4 inside the browser widget. It’s not really the best solution but it would work.

The built in browser probably doesn’t support SSL to allow a purchase. I would honestly be surprised if it does…

To implement things right, step one would be to create c++ for a connection protocol that calls to the shopify API.
Step 2 would be implementing the API commands avaliable to the correct UI buttons.

basically you need to approach it like software design.
you can try to implement some version of openSSL.
obviously, as new exploits are found you should also update the code, compile, and publish an update, making this a recurrent thing and not a one off…

Through the SSL you created you can then validate your api implementation by calling directly to the urls specified by the API. Probably, the easiest way is to implement a REST api and use that for handling the calls.
Surely, some plug and play apis like this have been developped and are avaliable.
Same thing as before though. You will need to recurrently update things.

Obviously the website, if custom, needs its own API to understand the calls, or the correct calls for the Shopify api.

Hope that helps.

Btw, not sure what agency you or your client is going with but beware. Web agencies that suggest using cokie cutter stuff for a very custom thing usually end up taking advantage of clients. I hate that type of competition for the image they bring to webdev community…