There’s never been a better time to start an online business than today. Additionally, selling on WordPress is a great option for anyone looking to start an e-commerce business and set up as soon as possible.
More than a quarter of the web runs on WordPress. This is because WordPress is easy to use and free. Plus, there’s a ton of free information for anyone with a computer to get started within a matter of minutes to a few hours. Also, it isn’t necessary to acquire any special skills to do so.
In this article, we will go over how to sell on WordPress; as well as what you need to be successful.
- Setting up WordPress for e-Commerce
- Installing WordPress e-Commerce Plugins
- 5 Best WordPress e-Commerce Plugins
- Configuring your WordPress e-Commerce Store
- Opening the Window of Opportunity
Setting up WordPress for e-Commerce
Before you start selling on a WordPress website, you will need to acquire a domain name, such as “mybiz.com.” In addition to your domain name, you’ll also need website hosting. If you’re unfamiliar with domains and hosting, think of it this way — your domain is like a house address while your hosting is the building that’s at that address.
Secure your domain name and hosting provider.
There are a lot of domain and hosting providers to choose from. One popular provider is Bluehost for WordPress websites, especially ecommerce sites. When you start shopping for domain names and hosting, you can benefit from keeping these tips in mind:
- Stick to using a .com domain name instead of something like .net; this is because the latter can seem low quality.
- If you’re not too tech-savvy, opt for using a host that allows 1-click WordPress installation for easy setup.
- Pick a host that allows you to grow as well as grows with you. Anticipating your future needs can save you the stress of changing hosts later on.
- Choose your name carefully. While you can change your domain name down the road, it can be difficult to redirect traffic to your new name.
Refer to any of these 3 internal articles:
- Cheap Web Hosting Solutions
- Top 5 Best Small Business Web Hosting In 2021
- Best Dedicated Web Hosting
Sometimes web hosting providers, like Bluehost, will automatically install WordPress and WooCommerce to your backend. However, if your host doesn’t provide you with this courtesy, you’ll probably have to roll up your sleeves and put in some technical work.
Set up WordPress e-commerce features.
WordPress is a great platform for creating a blog. However, it wasn’t initially intended to be an e-commerce platform. With this being the case, selling on WordPress will require you to integrate your online store with your blog.
While that sounds like a complicated task, it’s actually pretty simple! Integrating an e-commerce platform can be done with simply installing a plugin, like WooCommerce by WordPress.
Just like any other plugin, the steps are as follows:
- Download and install the WooCommerce plugin for WordPress.
- Answer the setup wizard’s questions.
- Select, install and customize a WordPress theme that’s fully compatible with WooCommerce.
- Use the Product Tab in your WordPress Admin center to add your first product. It will guide you through the process, step-by-step.
Install a WordPress e-commerce theme.
Themes control how your WordPress sites look to the users when they visit them.
For a WooCommerce shop, they also control how your products are displayed. Moreover, a solid theme can make or break the user’s digital experience (DX). So, your WordPress theme becomes an important factor in your users’ first impression of your business.
In addition, there are thousands of paid and free WordPress themes available. Sometimes, your web host will automatically install the Storefront theme; making it the default one you will see. You will need to customize it to meet your needs.
Head over to Appearance » Customize page. This will launch a theme customizer where you can change different theme settings.
Installing WordPress e-Commerce Plugins
Now that you have your online store ready, you probably want to get started with adding other elements such as a contact form, About Page, a FAQ widget or page, galleries, sliders and more.
To do so, installing WordPress plugins is the way to go. WordPress plugins allow you to add these nice features and achieve this with ease.
5 Best WordPress e-Commerce Plugins
There are many plugins to choose from — to be more specific, there are over 46,000 WordPress plugins available. Instead of having you scroll through what seems like an endless list of bells and whistles, you can check out our 5 best plugins:.
1: Yoast SEO
This plugin is a powerful SEO tool that many use. By using Yoast SEO, you will be able to improve the SEO of your whole website.
2: Yoast WooCommerce SEO plugin
Another great SEO tool, Yoast WooCommerce SEO improves the SEO of your products and other areas of your e-commerce store.
3: Contact Form 7
With Contact Form 7, you can let your site visitors contact you directly and more.
You should always save when you’re gaming and running a website. With UpdraftPlus, you can back up all your site content, including your products and other store data.
5: Social Share Buttons by GetSocial
The more your products are seen, the better. This plugin lets your customers share your products with their friends and family through social media.
Configuring your WordPress e-Commerce Store
After installing a theme and customizing the appearance of your website it’s time to set up the back-end procedures. This will include your products page and payment processing.
Set up product pages
You, as well as many others, have probably heard of SEO at least once. When it comes to product pages, SEO can play a huge part in being discovered online organically. In other words, you should optimize your e-commerce products for search engines in the same way you would any other type of content.
Here are just a few ways you can do so:
Make sure that every product has a clear description and that it contains suitable keywords.
- Give each product image relevant ‘alt’ text.
- Each product’s permalink should ideally contain the most relevant text and keyword.
- Consider your site structure generally as e-commerce sites are usually vast.
To touch on this last point, huge websites most likely have millions of pages. So, keeping things in order is crucial. For example, you should aim to keep a visitor no more than three clicks away from any element of your site.
Ultimately, it’s important to optimize your posts, pages and products equally.
It goes without saying that you need a payment process on any e-commerce site. Being able to accept online payments is at the core of any e-commerce store.
Assuming you decided to work with WooCommerce, the platform offers a lot in terms of the available payment solutions. What’s more, having multiple methods is highly recommended. In addition, making sure they’re properly integrated is vital; but is also as simple as sending through a small test payment.
Two of the most popular payment options are PayPal and Stripe, and it’s highly recommended that you use both on your site. During the initial setup of WooCommerce, you can simply check those payment methods.
If you’re looking for more choices, don’t worry. There are going to be even more options available later on in your WooCommerce settings panel.
Opening the Window of Opportunity
WordPress e-commerce stores offer a versatile and low-cost online selling solution for businesses. While it seems intimidating at first, setting up an e-commerce WordPress store is not difficult.
As you learn how to use and sell on WordPress, it’s important to review WordPress e-commerce plugins, payment processors and even shipping providers. By doing so, you’ll be able to find the best combination for your needs and budget. Moreover, once you’re up and running smoothly, you’ll be able to explore expanding your functionality and features. There’s really no limit to what you can do with a WordPress e-commerce store.