Did you know that, if your site is running on WordPress and you need a shop, you can have it in less than 30 minutes? Yes, it’s that easy, if you ever installed a plugin on your web site you can do this as well. Most popular WordPress online shops are built around an e-commerce plugin WooCommerce and all you need to do is:
in the admin area go to Plugins > Add new > Then search for WooCommerce in the top right corner > and click Install now.
And voila! Your e-commerce website on WordPress is alive. Of course, you need to add a product(s) or services, to customize the page and to think about payment gateways, but this is again something that WordPress and WooCommerce made easy and with no coding experience needed.
But, wait… Why use the blogging platform for e-commerce site when there are CMS dedicated to online shopping like Magento or ZenCart?!
WordPress as an e-commerce solution
First of all, WordPress is not just a blogging platform for a long time. The community around WP made this CMS leading e-commerce solution, especially with WooCommerce plugin which is number 1!
On the other hand, Shopify is in top10 as well, but… Unlike WooCommerce which is a WordPress plugin, Shopify is a hosted platform. That means all your store’s data stays on their servers. Still, you can use it with your self-hosted WordPress site with your own domain name as a lot of Shopify stores are doing. More on how to use Shopify with WordPress you can read here.
When it comes to Statistics for websites using WordPress Theme technologies, you can see that there are some solutions on the rise like theme frameworks or some WordPress builders, but already mentioned several times, the WooCommerce plugin is ruling the market with over 20% share. It allows you to customize your shop in line with your site and focus on content management. At the end, you’ll decide what will be the best solution: are you more for hosted Shopify or you want to use some of the WordPress solutions and host everything together.
Before you come to a final decision, there are some things you need to think about (otherwise you risk to start your e-commerce career with an angry group of customers).
4 must have elements for starting with e-commerce website on WordPress business
1. Hosting plan; e-commerce websites need much more space on the server than your ordinary blog or portfolio website. Check what you have now and if it does not look enough for the online shop, upgrade. In order to know what to look and what is needed for WP e-commerce read this useful article.
2. Responsiveness. Don’t even think creating a store that isn’t mobile optimized! More than 50% of all Google searches come from mobile devices. Worldwide mobile commerce spending will reach $700 billion by 2018. Research shows that significant % of online shoppers browse and select their products using a mobile device and then switch to a desktop device to complete the purchase. So, no doubt, you need to build your e-commerce website for mobile shoppers.
3. Security! Online stores are under special attack from not so good people out there online. You want to keep your customers payment details safe and secure. This is not only legal requirement, this maintains your reputation. Use security features that comes with reliable plugins, but as well you can obtain your own SSL certificate and make sure you’re PCI compliant.
From a security perspective, WordPress is secure and you need to make sure it stays secure. It needs to be updated, maintained, optimized on a regular basis. If you can do so, you will enjoy the customization ability of your online storefront down the line.
4. Marketing and Promotion. You know this already, it’s not enough just to be online, you need to be visible. And when it comes to e-commerce this is especially important. From the product descriptions, page content, customer relations all the way to Social Media presence and digital promotion. Think everything through and in details. If it does not work change it, adopt it, test it and learn from it.
If you need more resources to make your e-commerce website on WordPress a success, learn more here: