WooCommerce and WordPress are the most useful tools, if you are an entrepreneur considering to open an eCommerce business. Let’s checkout what they are and how they can help you set up your dream online store.
WooCommerce and WordPress
WordPress and WooCommerce plugins, are both free and open-source, making it possible to host anywhere. That means, with the free versions, one can set up a basic WordPress-powered eCommerce website with minimal features that can help your website.
First, let’s understand what WooCommerce and WordPress are.
WordPress is a content management system (CMS) or platform that is responsible for creating websites or blogs in a simple way without any cost. With WordPress you can create a website featuring various themes or templates. These themes are a collection of templates with pre-defined styles so that you can define the look and feel, layout colors, fonts and the overall appearance of your website.
Being a CMS, WordPress acts as the engine of your WordPress-site that works towards the database. You can create a domain with your own name which allows you to establish and configure your website. WordPress also lets you optimize your site for SEO and have an effective indexing of search engines so that you are searchable in Google, Bing, Yahoo!
WordPress allows you to add special functions or features to your site with the help of plugins. You can choose plugins depending on the purpose you want to serve and features you want to bring in.
WooCommerce is a plugin that is used to add eCommerce features to your WordPress Site and turn that in to an online store. It is the widely used eCommerce platform that gives both store owners and developers complete control and flexibility, with access to hundreds of free and premium extensions.
It adds four basic pages to your WordPress dashboard as given below:
- The Shop page
- Cart page
- Checkout, and
- Account page
Additionally, WooCommerce also has its own extensions for you to do advanced ecommerce functions which may incur additional costs. But for a beginner who is running on a tight budget, a WordPress site with modest WooCommerce features can be materialized with minimal investment.
WooCommerce features and Pricing
So What makes WooCommerce this popular?
It is its plentiness of features and integrations and along with professional analytics and other funtionalities.
As discussed above, WooCommerce plugin which works inside of a WordPress website facilitates in extending the WordPress functionality to eCommerce features like:
- Product Pages
- Cart and Checkout
- Payment Gateways including Paypal, Stripe, etc.
- Receipt Emails
- Inventory Tracking
Let’s discuss what this WooCommerce-WordPress combination has to offer for your online: store:
Webhosting is a service which you need run your website. This is where all your website files will be stored. Buying this service will incur you some cost. But you can start from very basic plans from as low as $2.75 per month.
Website theme and design
Likewise, WooCommerce lets you select from different themes and styles. But the themes that are suitable for your eCommerce store may not be available in the free themes list always. Or you might like a theme which comes with a cost. Also, in some of the situations you might need to spend some money to design your website to make it how you want it.
Another feature offered by WooCommerce is the multiple function-based plugins that it has to offer. To enhance your store’s performance and customer engagement, you can search and download a suitable extension offering the desired functionality. Some of them may be free, while some advanced extensions may incur charges.
The following are a few functionality-based plugins to name a few:
- Checkout plugins
- Plugins for Shipping
- Payment Gateways plugins
- Order management plugins
- Security plugins
Any eCommerce store needs some marketing strategies in order to be discoverable by its customers. There are multiple ways of marketing which can be done to boost the conversion rates of your eCommerce business.
- Email Marketing
- Social Media
There are umpteen number of plugins available for WooCommerce to promote and market your store.
To sum up, even though WooCommerce is free, there might be some investment to be made that can bring you the ease of having power features to maintain you store. However, if you are running on a budget crunch and yet, want to pursue your passion to have a fully functional eCommerce store, WooCommerce is probably one of the best and least expensive option.
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