WooCommerce website creation is an excellent and affordable option for starting an ecommerce business. In fact, there are currently over 3.3 million ecommerce sites that are powered by WooCommerce. It’s also easy enough that you don’t have to be a computer whiz to do it.
Using WordPress, a popular and free website and blogging publisher, and the WooCommerce plug-in you can quickly set up your site and start selling. And, the best news is, you can do it for free. We’ve put together a step-by-step guide to help you build your WooCommerce store using WordPress.
1. Start Your Site on WordPress
The first thing you need to do is choose a host and get the site running. You will need a domain name and a web hosting service. Here’s a great list of domain name generators for online sellers.
You will probably want to discourage search engines from locating you until your website is ready to go. You can do that through the settings option on your WordPress dashboard.
2. Pick Your WordPress Theme
Next you need to select the WordPress theme that you want to use for your site. How do you want it to look? There are tons of designs to choose from, many are free, and there are some that you can purchase. Here’s a list of 14 high-ranked WooCommerce themes to get you started.
You can also opt to commission a web designer to create a completely unique theme. Think about your budget to make this decision – but you can always upgrade later.
Once you have chosen a theme, you will need to work on the appearance of your site with images, logo, page layouts, social media links, etc. It’s not as complicated as it sounds. WordPress walks you through all of it.
3. Install WooCommerce and Set Up Your Shop
Now you’re ready to install the WooCommerce plug-in. After you’ve downloaded WooCommerce, the installation is done by going to Plugins>Add New>Upload.
The following list details the steps you need to set up your store. You may not need all of them. It all depends on the elements you need for your products.
Preparing a Product
Adding a product on WooCommerce is just like writing a blog post in WordPress. You can upload images or galleries that will be shown on your page. However, you first need to create attributes and terms specific to what you are selling. Attributes are things like clothing size or color options. “Terms” refers to available options for each attribute – small, medium, blue, red, etc.
Once you have created the attributes and terms of the product, you are ready to create the product listing, by going to Products > Add New. This is the step where you will add images, product description, and product content. Here are a few tips on how to write product descriptions that do your selling for you.
Lastly, you need to assign categories and tags to the product, so that your customers are able to locate specific products in your WooCommerce inventory quickly and easily.
Set Up a Checkout Page
Now you need to create a checkout page so your customers can easily purchase your products. If you plan to take payments directly on the site, you need to have SSL enabled. Make sure that you list all the forms of payment you plan to take (Visa, MasterCard, PayPal, etc.) and accompanying images. Let your customers know that you are using secure SSL-encrypted payment methods. Set up a box where your customers can enter their payment information, and display your refund and return policies. Learn more tips about creating high converting checkout pages.
Set Up Shipping
You need to have a way to get your products to your customers, so the next step is to set up your shipping methods. Consider whether you want to use flat-rate shipping, exact shipping, and if you are going to ship internationally. If your suppliers ships your products for you, make sure you learn how to dropship with WordPress – it will make your life a whole lot easier. WooCommerce integrates with UPS, USPS, and FedEx.
One more tip. Shipping management for WooCommerce sites becomes a lot easier when you have WooCommerce inventory management software to automate order routing, sync inventory quantities across channels, and automate your backend operations.
4. Install Plug-Ins
Your store should be ready for customers to make purchases at this point, but there are still a lot of things that you can do to improve the shopping experience and functionality of your website. There are numerous plug-ins you can choose to install with WooCommerce. The following are a few that you shouldn’t overlook:
- Product Add-Ons – Use this plug-in if you offer customizations to your products that are unique to each customer and each item. Things like personalization, engraving, etc.
- Product Reviews Pro – Online shoppers rely on reviews when deciding what to buy online. This plug-in allows you to receive customer reviews on your site.
- Table Rate Shipping – This plug-in calculates shipping rates based on your customer’s location and the size and weight of your product.
- Recommendations – This plug-in is a great sales booster. It groups similar products together and considers a customer’s buying history, then makes recommendations of other products they may be interested in.
- Customer History – You need this plug-in. This allows you track each customers’ purchasing history enabling you to personalize your interactions with them.
- Email Follow-Up – This allows you to send your customers customized and personalized emails at any interval you want.
Start Selling on WooCommerce
WooCommerce website creation is a terrific way to start an online business. You have many options that will allow your business to grow as your customer base does. Of course, once your site is up and you’re making sales, you will need to continually maintain and upgrade it to keep it up-to-date, quick, and engaging for your customers. In fact, here are 5 performance metrics you should track.