Woo in purple & White

What is WooCommerce?

WooCommerce is an e-commerce software platform that integrates with WordPress Open-Source Software. It has been reported that 25% to 30% of all e-commerce stores use Woo with over five million active installations.

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Image by Naji Habib
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How Does WooCommerce Work?

A dedicated software package commonly referred to as a plugin is added to a WordPress installation and provides general e-commerce functionality

What Kinds of Functionality?

  • Product Pages
  • Shopping Cart Pages
  • Checkout Pages
  • Invoices
  • Shipping Rates
  • Taxes
  • Payment Gateway Interfaces
  • …and Much, Much More!
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Image by Pete Linforth
Free Sign
Free Sign

What Does Woo Cost?

The basic WooCommerce plugin is Free! Many retail sites use only the free version; however, there is also a paid version and thousands of add-ons that can extend the functionality of a WooCommerce website and make it easier to manage. Some of these plugins are free and others are available for purchase. By searching for Woo plugins at wordpress.org, hundreds of free plugins can be found along with reviews and support forums. There are also thousands of both free & paid plugins that can be found at Woocommerce.com

Is WooCommerce difficult to use?

It depends on how the plugin is installed, configured and what a user is trying to do with the platform. With a basic understanding of WordPress, WooCommerce can be added to a website using the Installation Wizard that loads with the plugin. Once installed there is a detailed settings page that can be further configured to help meet a retail environment’s needs. Some areas like shipping, e-mail deliverability, variable products and taxes can be tricky for beginners, but there are numerous learning resources available to help overcome most challenges without needing to code.

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WooCommerce Setup Wizard Instructions

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Configuring WooCommerce

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Image by Image by Peggy & Marco Lachmann-Anke

How does Woo compare to other digital platforms?

It depends on the application and who is managing the website. There are many competing e-commerce platforms with many pros and cons. One of the biggest benefits to using WooCommerce on a self hosted site is that you own it. Some platforms may offer benefits such as good support or ease of use, but many do not allow you to own the site. If they don’t like your product mix or your politics, you might be censored or banned. Also some e-commerce site might be easy to use and fairly reliable, but they often will not let you modify the site as you like. With WooCommerce you own the site, chose the products or services and you can say what you like without worrying about losing your e-commerce store through censorship or banning as has been happening fairly regularly in recent year on some e-commerce platforms.

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What are some competing e-commerce platforms?

  • Amazon
  • Shopify
  • Etsy
  • BigCommerce
  • Squarespace
  • Wix
  • Magento
  • Easy Digital Downloads
  • OpenCart
  • Salesforce Commerce Cloud
  • OsCommerce
  • 3dcart
  • Volusion
  • Weebly
  • Ecwid
  • Big Cartel
  • SuiteCommerce
  • CoreCommerce
  • EKM
  • Xcart
  • PinnacleCart
  • PrestaShop
  • Prodigy

What can you sell with WooCommerce?

Pretty much anything. Physical products, digital products, memberships, events, subscriptions, educational offerings to name a few.

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Common Questions

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What WordPress theme works best with WooCommerce?

What does Woo integration mean?

How secure is WooCommerce?

Never enough. Digital security is a process with an ever evolving risk profile. Any store or platform that handles monetary transactions can be a targeted. The trend in cyber crime has been decidedly upward, so spending time understanding your specific risk profiles is highly prudent. There are products and plugins that can improve Woo security. It is important to keep your website’s theme and all of its plugins up to date, but full scope security requires much more than a simple digital solution.

Is there support for WooCommerce?

Yes, particularly for the paid versions of WooCommerce, but there also free support through various forums, meetups & websites. There is a massive worldwide Woo & WordPress community with many people volunteering their time and energy supporting these platforms & their users.

What are product attributes & variable pricing?

Attributes describe a products features like color or size and variable pricing allows for price setting based on those attributes.

What kinds of personal information does Woo retain?

A lot or a little. WooCommerce allows for the deletion of customer information after a set period of time. How your store retains and/or deletes customer information should be disclosed in the website’s privacy policy and terms & conditions.

How does WooCommerce handle Taxes?

In some people’s opinion poorly, if you are looking for automation. You can set sales tax rates manually, but it is a tedious process if you are dealing with multiple tax jurisdictions. Fortunately, there are a number of tax plugins & extensions that make sales tax calculations & reporting much easier.

Woo in purple & White