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The WooCommerce Blog

Tips, tricks and eCommerce inspiration from WooCommerce experts.

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How to build your WooCommerce store to last

January 13, 2017 - 11 Comments

Once you’ve made the decision to build a store with WooCommerce, you don’t want anything to slow you down.

If your store isn’t built with longevity in mind, however, you could run into trouble as time goes on. You might see product pages load slowly, extensions stop functioning, or even encounter serious issues like data loss or security breaches.

These are all issues that will ultimately lead to one thing: a decline in — or complete loss of  — paying customers.

To keep your WooCommerce store profitable, you need to build it with long-term stability, safety, and performance in mind. Let’s take a look at how you can build a WooCommerce store that will last for months, years, and beyond.

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Ways to create ongoing relationships with your customers

January 11, 2017 - 7 Comments

Your store would be nowhere without your customers. They determine which products sell, how much money you make, and how successful you’ll ultimately become.

If you want your store to be more successful — and to make more money — you should start thinking about building relationships. Creating and nurturing long-lasting relationships can lead to higher sales, better shopper satisfaction, and the acquisition of even more loyal customers.

Let’s take a look at a few ways you can start building solid customer relationships. We’ll also explain the ways these connections will benefit you in the long term, even if you sell products shoppers will only buy once and hopefully never purchase again.

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Woo Year In Review 2016

December 27, 2016 - 25 Comments

Hello, Howdy, G’Day, etc,

I’m Todd Wilkens, the new Head of WooCommerce. It’s been an amazing year here at Woo and I want to take a moment to share some thoughts and facts about our team and this great community that you are a crucial part of. In fact, before anything else, let me say thank you:

To every user, customer, and Open Source community contributor out there: WooCommerce exists for and because of you. It’s because of you that the most-used eCommerce platform for WordPress and, therefore, the most widely used eCommerce platform in the world exists. Thank you!

The end of the year is near, and it’s a time for reflecting. Read on for thoughts on the year gone by, what worked and what didn’t, and what we’re excited about for 2017.

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What you can learn from Woo’s holiday sales

December 9, 2016 - 12 Comments

We run a couple of major holiday sales on WooCommerce.com each year, including Hallowoon, Black Friday, and Cyber Monday. The challenge as each one comes around is: how do we keep running them bigger, better, and fresher?

This year we tried a few new things that increased conversions. We learned a lot from these experiences, and decided to write about them as we thought you might be able to learn from them as well.

Read on for some key questions to ask before running a sale, tips on creating a positive sale experience, and what there is to be learnt from Woo’s holiday sales.

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8 email features to add for a great customer experience

December 1, 2016 - 20 Comments

Question: how are your store’s emails improving the experience of your customers?

If it’s difficult for you to answer this question, that’s okay. We tend to think of the emails we send to customers as final steps in a sales process, or necessary interactions that keep new orders coming in. But these messages can — and should be — much more than that.

With the right features, every email you send to your customers can lead to a happier, stress-free experience. Order receipts can increase trust, shipping notifications can solve problems, and even marketing messages can add a sense of delight.

Let’s take a look at some of the features you should have in your store’s emails, and how they can make your customers feel great about buying from you.

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How a Berlin startup is bringing artisan food back to everyday life

November 29, 2016 - 3 Comments

We all have to eat. But that’s not a very inspiring starting point for breakfast, lunch or dinner.

One passionate team of foodies in Berlin have made it their mission to address the food ambivalence that our crazy, busy lives push us towards — and instead gently shift the German-grocery status quo of over-reliance on supermarkets and processed food back to having artisan food in everyday lives.

Gegessen Wird Immer
Gegessen Wird Immer is bringing artisan food back to everyday lives for German eaters.

Read on the for the story of how Gegessen Wird Immer grew to be a thriving, wholehearted online business that’s blazing a farm fresh trail across Germany to deliver fresh quality produce to homes and offices with WooCommerce.

GWI team
The Gegessen Wird Immer team, happy folks.

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How to best suggest additional products to your shoppers

November 23, 2016 - 20 Comments

Once a shopper has decided on a product and added it to their cart, their first thought is going to be “great, now I’m ready to check out!”

At this same stage, your first thought might be “wait, don’t go yet! You haven’t even seen all my stuff yet!”

Motivating customers to purchase additional products is a challenge, but it doesn’t have to be. WooCommerce’s many solutions for suggesting, upselling, and bundling products together make it easy to show shoppers what else they should consider — and help you make more from every sale.

Let’s explore three of the best ways that you can add on to your customers’ purchases, from cross-sells to groups to bundles.

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The importance of accessibility for your online store

November 15, 2016 - 33 Comments

Everyone who shops online does so a little differently. We make decisions at our own pace, use different devices, and interact with stores in ways that feel most comfortable to us.

For some shoppers, the process of viewing or buying a product is vastly different than you might expect. Their internet connection may be slow due to living in a developing country, they may rely on a screen reader due to visual impairment, or they may navigate with a keyboard due to the inability to reliably use a mouse.

These differences create the need to design and maintain a store that is accessible for everyone. That’s the goal of accessibility for eCommerce: creating an online store that everyone can use, no matter their age, skill level, location, or presence of a disability.

Today we’re going to take a look why you should make your WooCommerce store more accessible, and some resources you can use to improve its design and functionality for all your shoppers.

Ready to learn? Let’s start with a closer look at what we mean when we talk about accessibility.

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3 WooCommerce stores with awesome product customizations

November 11, 2016 - 11 Comments

You want, we’re sure, every customer who purchases a product from your store to have an enjoyable shopping experience. You want to avoid broken links, slow pages, and abandoned carts.

The stakes get even higher for the shoppers who aren’t just browsing, but are creating the products they plan to purchase. Custom-created or personalized products can increase sales dramatically, but with their presence comes a need for product pages that go above and beyond the standard image gallery and add to cart button.

Whether you’re already selling products with optional personalization or are considering adding some custom creations for your store, we thought a little inspiration might prove useful. And, thanks to the WooCommerce Showcase, inspiration is never hard to find.

Here’s a look at three stores with some amazing customization options on their product pages, plus tips and extensions that will help you pull this off on your own store.

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A developer’s checklist to optimizing your store for the holidays

November 4, 2016 - 6 Comments

Holiday Tips 2016

The holiday season is the most important time of year for store owners. Retailers acquire between 29% and 59% more customers during the holiday months, which makes this season a make-or-break period for you or your client’s overall sales.

It’s essential to ensure that your site can handle the increase in traffic and new orders. As an on-demand WooExpert, we have seen the good, the bad, and the ugly when it comes to poorly optimized sites during the holiday season… and we want to help you avoid the latter two.

There is no simple cure-all solution, but we’ve assembled a short list of proactive improvements you can make to your store right now now. The more people that hit your site, the more noticeable the effect of these optimizations will be.

Let’s get started.

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Post-purchase emails to send to holiday customers

November 3, 2016 - 6 Comments

mailer-thin

Today’s guest post comes to us from Danny Wong at Conversio (formerly Receiptful). Conversio is a marketing platform that allows you to supercharge customer interactions and maximize your customer lifetime value — give it a try this holiday season for amazing emails and more. Take it away, Danny!

If there’s any time of the year to pull out all the stops, it’s the always exciting holiday shopping season. Online purchases for holiday gifts are rising exponentially, as more consumers begin to recognize the futility of sitting in traffic, fighting for parking, and waiting in long checkout lines at physical stores.

In 2015, eCommerce holiday spending grew to $70 billion, and it seems a foregone conclusion that online sales will continue to account for an increasing percentage of all holiday consumer transactions.

comScore’s 2015 holiday spending estimates.
comScore’s 2015 holiday spending estimates.

As a store owner, your job is just getting started when the customer completes the checkout process. The post-purchase period is an opportune time to further engage your customers and work on building a strong relationship that will lead to repeat purchases.

Post-purchase email marketing is crucial to accomplishing this, and your strategy for creating these emails should be given as much attention as your pre-sale marketing tactics.

Let’s take a look at some post-purchase emails you should aim to send this holiday season, and why they’re such an important part of your holiday marketing strategy.

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How bundled products can boost your holiday sales

October 31, 2016 - Leave a comment

Holiday Tips 2016

We’ve talked a lot lately about tactics to improve your store in advance of the holiday season, from checkout optimization to tweaking your navigation. Today we’re going to shift gears and focus on a tactic that will help you actively make more money.

There are plenty of things you can do to bump up your earning potential, but quite a few of them involve adding new products or bringing in more inventory. What we’re going to look at today will allow you to earn more with simple “packaging” changes to the products you already have.

Let’s dive into how you can set up and promote product bundles this holiday season, and a few ways that you can ensure they help you make more money.

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How to prepare for post-holiday returns

October 30, 2016 - 12 Comments

Holiday Tips 2016

This holiday post is brought to you by ShipStation. ShipStation will help you get your holiday shipments — and returns — in order so you can breathe easier. Thanks for the advice, friends!

Once the holidays are over, you can breathe a long sigh of relief. Things can finally settle down and go back to normal, right?

Well… not exactly. According to the Wall Street Journal, the USPS handled 3.2 million post-Christmas returns a few years ago. And that’s just one carrier.

After the holidays end, your top priority needs to be satisfying the customers who have ill-fitting, unsuitable, or defective merchandise that they’d like to send back to you. This means making a plan to handle post-holiday returns — and handle them so well that these gift recipients turn into bonafide customers.

Let’s take a look at how you can handle these returns and exchanges smoothly. We’ll start with what you can do now, before the season starts, to get your website ready. Then we’ll look at how to properly handle returns and unhappy giftees.

Ready? Let’s get a move on.

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Optimizing your payment process for a successful holiday season

October 28, 2016 - 1 Comment

Holiday Tips 2016

Today’s post comes to us from Sabrina Papini, the Manager of Partner Marketing at PayPal. She’s here to tell you what you should be thinking about when it comes to payments, checkout, and the holidays. We hope you enjoy!

As the winter holidays approach, one of the best ways to maximize your revenue is to ensure your checkout process and payments are optimized for the most sales possible. To best appreciate this, think of your checkout process as a funnel to understand where you are losing sales.

Here’s what we mean by a funnel, where customers are seen “leaking” from it at various stages of the process:

This funnel has "leaks" at every stage of the sales process.
This funnel has “leaks” at every stage of the sales process.

In the graphic above, I’ve listed three common reasons for cart abandonment according to SalesCycle, but depending on your own store, you might have some other areas you can quickly address.

In this post, we’ll talk about five key ways you can improve your payment process for the holidays:

  1. Build trust in your online business
  2. Remove checkout obstacles to streamline checkout
  3. Invest in mobile
  4. Expand your market to include international customers
  5. Give customers more payment choices

Let’s get started.

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Helpful tips for holiday landing pages

October 27, 2016 - 1 Comment

Holiday Tips 2016

When a new visitor comes to your store, you have just a few seconds to convince them to buy. This goes double for holiday shoppers, who are likely stressed, pressed for time, and seeking out that perfect gift.

Over this busy season when attention spans are limited and competition is rife, smart optimization of your store’s landing pages could give your store an edge. If a shopper has two seconds to choose between a store with a busy homepage and another with a targeted page that speaks exactly to their needs, well, that single page might make all the difference.

In this post, we’ll take a look at what landing pages are, how to optimize them for holiday shoppers, and explore a few new pages you might need to convert more of those clicks into solid sales. Let’s dive in.

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How to handle common holiday shipping issues

October 24, 2016 - 2 Comments

mailer-thin

This post is brought to you by Sarah at ShippingEasy. ShippingEasy saves you money through discounted shipping rates and makes it easy to print labels, process orders, and more. Let’s hear what Sarah has to say about shipping easier this holiday season.

If you run an online store, shipping is the one area where everything you do becomes tangible to your customer. At no time is this more critical to a positive customer experience than the holidays, when the product your customer is touching is likely to be a gift from a friend or family member.

But there are obstacles. If you don’t prepare, you can ruin someone’s holiday with a late or damaged shipment. Holidays offer opportunities to build your brand, increase customer loyalty, and acquire new customers… but they also offer benefits that will improve your bottom line.

The best way to ensure your business’s success is to learn how to prepare for some of the most common holiday shipping issues. In this post, we’ll cover how you can get ready for everything from lost shipments to weather delays to the general rush caused by an increase in packages.

Let’s get started!

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