Start Your Successful Online Store On WordPress with WooCommerce (Review 2021)

Start Your Successful Online Store On WordPress with WooCommerce (Review 2021)

When starting an eCommerce business, picking the right platform is a tough decision. You need to consider many factors, like its overall reputation, features, customer service, pricing, and ease of use. 

WooCommerce is probably one of the best and most popular platforms for online business. Therefore, in this article, we are going to review about WooCommerce from several aspects:

  • How Does WooCommerce Work?
  • What Is WooCommerce Used For?
  • Who Uses WooCommerce
  • Why Should I Use WooCommerce?
  • Is WooCommerce Free to Use?
  • How to Use WooCommerce?
  • Pros
  • Cons
  • What Are The Alternatives to WooCommerce?
  • Conclusion

Getting Started

WooCommerce is the world’s most popular eCommerce platform that lets you add a storefront to your WordPress site for free. It empowers small and medium businesses to build the online store they want. To accomplish that, WooCommerce offers reasonable levels of flexibility and several vital features, including inventory and tax management, secure payments, and shipping integration.

First launched in 2011, WooCommerce was specifically made for eCommerce. This plugin became very successful and now has been installed by 1000k+ users on WordPress. In 2015, WooCommerce was taken over by Automattic. Automattic is now the active developer for WooCommerce, which is used by over 300,000 online retailers, including some fairly large and high-traffic sites.

How Does WooCommerce Work?

Firstly, WooCommerce is an open-source plugin in WordPress and not a standalone site builder. In other words, WooCommerce only functions as a builder for the e-commerce part of your WordPress site. 

To start using WooCommerce, all you need to do is:

  1. Acquire hosting services from a web hosting provider.
  2. Install and configure WordPress.
  3. Build your web design using a theme and boosting performance, security, and features with plugins.
  4. Install and configure WooCommerce to handle the e-commerce function of the site.

After that, you can get started with WooCoommerce in three steps: complete the onboarding wizard, add your products to the storefront, and enable additional payment gateways.

What Is WooCommerce Used for?

WooCommerce is perfect for building an online store on your WordPress site. It allows you to use eCommerce functionalities like add products, a shopping cart, and checkout options.

In addition to that, you can do the following things using WooCommerce:

  • Appointment bookings – for businesses that need reservations like fitness training, plumbing & home services, counseling, barbershops, salons, business consulting, and more.
  • Membership-only sections of your site.
  • Recurring subscriptions for digital or physical goods – for instance, subscriptions of home maintenance services, financial newsletters, or software subscriptions.
  • Shipment tracking – for product delivery.
  • Bulk discounts
  • Accept payments in-person via Square
  • Generate store credit coupons
  • Offer gift certificates
  • Subscriptions gifting – making it easy for customers to purchase subscriptions for others.
  • Manage ticket sales for events
  • Track and manage EU VAT rules.

Who Uses WooCommerce?

Online businesses from small, medium, to big scales, can use WooCommerce to empower their online stores. It is a flexible eCommerce platform where you can sell digital downloads, physical products, or services. 

Some of the best eCommerce sites built with WooCommerce are:

Porter and York

Porter and York

Barefoot Buttons

Barefoot Buttons

Sodashi

Sodashi

Roberto Coin

Roberto Coin

Henry J Socks

Henry J Socks

Why Should I Use WooCommerce?

There are many reasons why you should use WooCommerce instead of other eCommerce plugins. We will tell you the top 5 reasons:

You can use WooCommerce for free

One of the biggest advantages of WooCommerce from others is that you can use it for free. Hence, any size of business can start opening their online store without committing to expensive costs. However, if you want to connect your WooCommerce to other third-party apps or add extensions, you need to pay for them.

Optimized for WordPress

WooCommerce is specifically made for WordPress. Therefore, you can get benefit from it as WordPress is the most famous CMS (content management system) for websites. The compatibility between your existing WordPress site and WooCommerce will make a very smooth integration.

Sell Anything on WooCommerce

WooCommerce is incredibly flexible. With WooCommerce, you can sell any product, starting from physical products, digital products, subscriptions, appointments, and much more. In other words, you can also create any type of business with it.

Made for eCommerce Purposes

As mentioned before, WooCommerce is designed for eCommerce. It provides many features and functionalities for sales. It has over 100 payment gateways for online transactions, multiple shipping methods with configurable shipping zones, and shipping classes. In addition to that, there is an intuitive backend for stock management, refunds, order management, email management, and everything else you need to efficiently manage your eCommerce store. Moreover, you can customize the themes of your WooCommerce that are mobile-friendly. 

Provides a bunch of Extensions for Sales

You can improve your store’s functionalities with a few extensions. Fortunately, there are 400+ official extensions for WooCommerce, that are either free or paid. The examples of extensions you can add are appointment bookings, membership-only sections, shipment tracking, and many more. Moreover, WooCommerce has integration with Google Analytics to help you understand more about your customers’ interests. 

You can also install several useful plugins for your WooCommerce sites, such as One Page Checkout, WooCommerce Follow-ups, MailChimp, Conversio, Beeketing, Social Login, Multilingual, and many more.

Is WooCommerce Free to Use?

Yes, you can use WooCommerce for free.

Basically, WooCommerce is a free plugin on WordPress that operates on the freemium model. This means the core plugin is free, with various add-ons available that can add extra features to your online store. Some of those add-ons are free, some are paid. You can choose from many useful add-on features, such as WooCommerce Google Analytics, MailChimp, Product Bundles, and FreshDesk.

How to Use WooCommerce?

A Beginner’s Guide to Using WooCommerce

 

 

Pros

  • Optimized for WordPress
  • Free plugin
  • Highly customizable
  • Provides many integrations
  • Has an active community of developers & experts

Cons

  • WooCommerce updates don’t always work well with WordPress
  • Self-hosted (you have to handle updates and maintenance)
  • Requires knowledge and proficiency in WordPress
  • Costs can still run high when you factor in hosting, development, maintenance, etc.

What Are the Alternatives to WooCommerce?

There are other eCommerce platforms that can be alternatives to WooCommerce:

Conclusion

WooCommerce is an open-source eCommerce platform that’s built for WordPress. With WooCommerce, you can start your online store and design it to be as attractive as you want. It’s a whole package of eCommerce solutions as it provides many features, extensions, and integrations to support your online store.

In terms of payments, WooCommerce “comes bundled with PayPal (for accepting credit card and PayPal account payments), BACS, and cash on delivery for accepting payments.” Moreover, WooCommerce integrates with hundreds of solutions, including Facebook, Sage, Zapier, MailChimp, ShipStation, Square, Stripe, Fulfilment by Amazon, and more.

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