Starting an online business has never been easier. New entrepreneurs can open an online store in minutes thanks to platforms like Shopify and BigCommerce. The downside of these platforms is that you’d be renting space on a third-party platform. As such, you have less control over how your shop looks and functions.
But if you’re a WordPress user, there’s a more elegant solution – WooCommerce.
WooCommerce powers millions of eCommerce sites worldwide, and it’s the only WordPress plugin to make the list of top eCommerce platforms. WooCommerce is available directly from WordPress or as an eCommerce option offered by most web hosting providers.
It allows both dedicated WooCommerce developers and new users with no experience in web design to create visually appealing and fully functional online storefronts right inside an existing WordPress-powered site.
WooCommerce is considered by many to be a leading website builder for any e-commerce store. It is easy to install and populate with digital or physical products. Business owners around the world can use this WordPress plugin as a way to open an online shop and process payments.
Read on to learn how to use WooCommerce to start selling products for your personal business. By reading this guide, you can easily add WooCommerce to WordPress and set up an online store.
What is WooCommerce?
Platforms like BigCommerce and Shopify host hundreds of online stores of all kinds. You pay a monthly fee that includes a web hosting provider, shop “space,” and templates for creating the storefront. It also includes access to various administrative tools for running and managing the site.
But while these platforms make it easy to set up your store, you don’t own your store. Platforms can shut down or even suspend your account if they think you’re violating their terms of service. Needless to say, this can negatively impact your sales and brand reputation.
But WooCommerce works differently.
It’s a plugin, a small bit of code that you install onto your existing WordPress website. Once installed and activated, WooCommerce adds all the necessary features for setting up an online store. WooCommerce is the most popular WordPress eCommerce plugin as it is flexible, customizable, and free. It eliminates the fees and third-party control over significant aspects of an online store.
Websites using WooCommerce are everywhere – this versatile, flexible platform is a great option for any e-commerce solution. Like many other WordPress plugins, it’s completely free to use and can be installed on any compatible WordPress site. Because WooCommerce is a plugin, it integrates seamlessly with a site’s existing WordPress theme and runs alongside its other parts.
Once installed, WooCommerce is added to the site’s WordPress dashboard, with tools for statistics and reporting and for managing eCommerce tasks like adding products and handling sales.
There are hundreds of WordPress themes designed specifically with WooCommerce in mind. These themes have modern designs and come equipped with mega menus, first-product quick views, wish lists, and more.
In addition, thousands of WooCommerce extensions add even more features to your online store. From integrations with accounting apps to additional payment gateways, WooCommerce gives you a stable, secure solution for managing an online store.
A complete eCommerce solution for WordPress sites
More than just a simple tool for taking payments, WooCommerce is a fully functioning eCommerce platform that adds all the components of an online store to any business site. Like the WP engine itself, it is an open-source project.
Related: How to use WooCommerce
Thus, it can be constantly updated and customized for any user’s needs, thanks to the easy availability of its source code and a large and growing community of both beginning and advanced users willing to share their knowledge and offer help.
WooCommerce can be set up and customized through its easy-to-use interface, so no knowledge of website development is required. But advanced users can also work with its source code for more control over its functions and appearance. For all users, though, WooCommerce offers all the tools needed to create fully functioning online stores.
The basic WooCommerce plugin includes all essential eCommerce platform elements. Users can customize the storefront’s look and keep it compatible with their brand and the rest of the website.
Product pages can be added as needed and include options for adding images and product information or coupons and discounts.
WooCommerce also supports a full range of shopping cart and checkout options with various payment options tailored to either worldwide sales or sales from specific countries.
More functions can be added to the WooCommerce plugin through its numerous extensions – secondary plugins that perform a variety of specific tasks like calculating shipping rates, adding analytics, or managing digital downloads.
WooCommerce is flexible and scalable, too, so it can support the changing needs of a growing online business.
Top features of WooCommerce
- The ability to sell physical products, services, and digital products or downloadable products
- Support for various payment options, such as PayPal, Stripe, credit cards, or bank transfers
- Inventory tracking
- Currency and shipping settings calculators for all countries
- Analytics for all product types
- Unlimited product image uploads and product pages
- Full shopping cart and checkout setup
It’s also worth mentioning that Automattic, the company behind WordPress.com, developed WooCommerce. It’s included in the official WordPress plugin directory.
You can install WooCommerce on your new or existing WordPress site in a few simple steps.
How to install WooCommerce on your WordPress website?
1. Prepare Your WordPress Site and Add the WooCommerce Plugin
Before learning how to set up WooCommerce on WordPress, it’s helpful to prepare your WordPress website. For starters, ensure your WordPress website is updated to the latest version.
That ensures that your e-commerce website is compatible with the latest version of WooCommerce.
The next thing you should do is install a theme that supports WooCommerce. These WooCommerce themes come with additional templates that support key WooCommerce features, such as WooCommerce products and checkout pages. We’ve identified some of the best WooCommerce themes, but there are many different designs available from highly trusted developers.
In addition, they were designed to be responsive for best viewing on mobile devices. That will ensure that your WordPress store is optimized for mobile shopping.
After that, you can add the WooCommerce plugin to your site. Here’s a straightforward step-by-step guide to adding WooCommerce to WordPress.
Adding WooCommerce to WordPress
- Log in to your WordPress dashboard
- Go to Plugins > Add New
- Search for WooCommerce and press Install
- When the plugin is done installing, click Activate
- Set up and configure your store
2. Set Up WooCommerce on WordPress and Configure Your Store
Once you activate WooCommerce, you’ll be taken to the WooCommerce setup wizard.
The wizard allows you to configure key features of your store. You’ll be able to set preferences for the type of products you want to start selling, currencies accepted, and shipping methods.
You’ll also need to specify your store’s business address and choose a theme for your store if you haven’t already done so.
3. Add Products to Your Store
Once you’ve configured the basic details for your store, it’s time to add your new products.
WooCommerce allows you to sell just about anything. That includes services, physical products, music and video files, and digital goods.
To sell products, click on Products > Add New. As shown in the screenshot below, you can add a product title, description, and featured image.
You can also set a category for your product and add product tags. When you’re done filling out all the details, click Publish. That will make the product appear in your shop where every visitor can buy it.
To add more products, simply repeat the steps above.
4. Add Extensions for More Features
WooCommerce comes with all the basic tools for setting up an online shop. But, some businesses may have more complex and specific needs. For those situations, you can customize your WooCommerce store even more with extensions and add-ons.
As mentioned earlier, numerous WooCommerce extensions are available from the official WooCommerce site and third-party sites.
Some extensions are free. Others are paid.
But you can install them on an as-needed basis to expand the features of your store to customize search engine optimization (SEO) better, add more product data, add additional payment methods, variable product options, subscriptions, memberships, shipping options, coupons, tax rates, expanded SSL support and more.
5. Manage Payments With WooCommerce
WooCommerce has solutions for a wide range of payment gateways and shipping functions. WooCommerce extensions allow users to customize these options for world currencies, collect taxes, and calculate shipping rates.
Users can choose from more than 120 free and paid payment gateway applications such as PayPal, Stripe, or Square to install on the checkout page.
6. Fulfilling Orders Through WooCommerce
WooCommerce includes tools for collecting payments and calculating shipping costs to destinations worldwide or specific locations only. Extensions can add functions such as tracking orders and creating PDF invoices, packing slips, and shipping labels.
Sellers of digital products can set up instant downloads upon payment, and WooCommerce also allows users to include affiliate products sold on external websites to the store.
There is no doubt that WordPress is the world’s most popular site builder and content management system. One reason why is the sheer amount of plugins available for WordPress.
WooCommerce is one such plugin. It’s one of the most popular plugins for WordPress. WooCommerce is free to install and easy to use, whether you’re a beginner or an advanced user. It integrates seamlessly with WordPress and allows you to create a fully functioning e-commerce store that’s completely under your control.
However, using WooCommerce isn’t for everyone. Popular eCommerce hosting platforms like Shopify and Magento can offer users a wide range of e-store services with the convenience of third-party management – for a price.
But for online store owners who want flexibility, scalability, and complete control over their digital storefront, WooCommerce offers all the tools for creating a fully functioning online enterprise – completely for free.
If you’re ready to get started with WordPress and WooCommerce, check out our WooCommerce hosting plans. Pick the one that fits your budget, and get started building your online store today.
Really you have given a Good information about integrating WordPress with WooCommerce. WooCommerce has very good features for building a website. Thank you for sharing the information.
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