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How to build your WooCommerce store to last

January 13, 2017 - 22 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 - 12 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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What you can learn from Woo’s holiday sales

December 9, 2016 - 13 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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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 - 12 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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WooCommerce Extensions to Try for Driving Holiday Sales

October 12, 2016 - Leave a comment

Your customers expect a lot of things during the holiday season — giftable goods, fast shipping, maybe even the option to gift wrap their presents — but above all else, the one thing they’re going to be looking for are those sweet, sweet deals.

Bringing shoppers to your store isn’t as simple as making a coupon or slashing a price. It takes smart marketing to get the word out about what you’re offering, first of all. And in many cases, you might find that creating attractive deals for your specific audience takes a little more than “here’s a code for $5 off.”

To help you prepare your store for bonafide holiday success, we’ve compiled a selection of six WooCommerce extensions that will help you create, distribute, and promote successful holiday offers.

From multi-purpose coupon extensions to add-ons that turn your store into a marketing machine, these solutions will give you everything you need. Read on to find out what they are and how you can use them.

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How to sell to shoppers celebrating international holidays

September 28, 2016 - 7 Comments

With the holiday shopping season on the horizon, you’re likely beginning to give some thought to how you attract, market, and sell your products to customers in the same region as your store.

But why stop there? If you can take payments from international shoppers and ship all around the world, there’s no reason you should limit yourself to sales and promotions for one country or a single holiday.

If you’ve been growing your store internationally, the holiday season is your chance to see the benefits of your hard work. With some research, knowledge of what global shoppers expect, and smart, well-timed promotions, you can reach customers celebrating holidays all around the world — and give your sales a nice boost.

Here’s how you can start selling to shoppers celebrating international holidays, plus a few ways that you can get the word out about your global sales.

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7 WooCommerce extensions for more loyal customers

September 9, 2016 - 6 Comments

After you build your store and open it up to customers, your focus will shift to from generating sales to generating loyalty — and with good reason. As we explained previously, if you can get a customer to come back for a second purchase, the chances of them sticking with your store will dramatically increase.

There are a ton of ways you can make shoppers loyal to one brand over another. Pricing is one angle you can take. An amazing customer support policy is another. But loyalty doesn’t have to rely on cheap prices or friendly emails.

Occasional treats, payment flexibility, and friendly, open communication can turn your newest customers into lifetime ones. And with a few specific WooCommerce extensions, you can add these loyalty-boosters to your store in a flash — no custom code or development needed.

Let’s take a look at seven extensions that you can start using today to boost the loyalty of your shoppers.

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Smart pricing strategies that inspire customer loyalty

August 30, 2016 - 11 Comments

So you’ve put in time, effort, and hard work to bring new customers to your store. The next checkbox on your to-do list? Bringing those customers back again.

A study on eCommerce buying behavior by RJMetrics found that about 32% of first-time customers came back for a second purchase. That might not seem like much, but listen to this: the customers who did make those second purchases became more likely to return for a third, then a fourth, and so on, on an incremental scale:

The more repeat purchases a customer makes, the more likely they are to keep buying from you. (Chart source: RJMetrics)
The more repeat purchases a customer makes, the more likely they are to keep buying from you. (Chart source: RJMetrics)

Bring a customer back just once and you’re more likely to count them among your most loyal shoppers. But how do you even begin to establish that kind of “I’ll only shop with you” loyalty, anyway?

One of the best ways you can create longtime loyalty is with smart pricing strategies. We aren’t talking about offering coupons nonstop — we’re talking about rewarding shoppers for consistently choosing your store, or offering discounts they can’t find anywhere else.

Let’s explore a few strategies you can try to bring those first-time shoppers back again and again.

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How Woo uses content as part of the sales process

August 16, 2016 - 8 Comments

There are a ton of ways your store to convince shoppers to make a purchase. Well-rounded product pages, quality copywriting, targeted social media advertising, emails — they’ll all get the job done.

But some of your potential customers might not be ready to make a commitment. They might be new to your products or services, or learning what separates your store from another. And that’s why educational content is an awesome addition, because it allows shoppers to learn about you in a natural way, and at their own pace.

At WooCommerce, we’ve ramped up the creation of content, its promotion, and its usage in our marketing over the last 15 months. It’s become a critical part of our sales process, and something that we can no longer imagine operating without.

Today I’ll be pulling back the curtain to give you a behind-the-scenes look at how we produce and use our content with sales in mind, all so you can take away some ideas and inspiration for the content on your store.

If you’re interested in seeing how a business like ours uses content marketing, keep reading!

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How to take payments with WooCommerce – affordably

August 11, 2016 - 25 Comments

Building a store can get costly. Even the most experienced developers can find themselves overspending — a premium theme here, a cool-sounding extension there, and suddenly you’ve blown the budget.

The ability to accept payments is one of those things you almost have to spend part of your budget on. But there’s no reason you should have to waste all your money on preparing to take credit cards online, or cash from local shoppers.

There are multiple ways to take payments from your customers without spending a fortune on setup or monthly fees. From built-in processors to optional extensions, there’s a fitting solution for every budget-conscious store builder that won’t waste your money — or your time, for that matter.

Let’s explore a few ways you can take payments with WooCommerce… and do so affordably. But first, we’ll take a closer look at what it really costs to take credit card payments, and why a “cheap” payment gateway may not be as good as it sounds.

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Why you should use SKUs in your store

August 9, 2016 - 21 Comments

Using item numbers or stock keeping units — better known as SKUs — might seem unnecessary for your store. Stop us if any of this sounds familiar:

“My store’s really small, so I don’t need SKUs — I know everything by sight.”

“I don’t sell to anyone other than my customers, so why would I need item numbers?”

“My products don’t have any variations, so SKUs aren’t required.”

These are valid objections… sort of. But they’re also excuses that could hinder your relationship with partners, cause logistical issues for for your store, or — worst of all — keep you from reaching your full sales potential.

No matter the size of your store, what you sell, or who it is you sell it to, you should absolutely be using SKUs. After all, WooCommerce makes it so quick to add them that you don’t really have an excuse… but we understand that you might need a little more convincing. 😉

Here are five reasons why SKUs are useful for eCommerce.

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How to optimize all your eCommerce landing pages

August 3, 2016 - 14 Comments

When you hear the phrase “landing page,” you probably think of a dedicated page on a website. Or you might even think of your store’s homepage.

Most marketing blogs suggest that you use dedicated landing pages to show new visitors marketing messages, or offer a specific audience a deal or pitch crafted just for them. And sure, for some sites, this is an effective strategy — but it’s different in the world of eCommerce.

When you run an online store, landing pages aren’t limited to just a few select spots. The reality is that almost every page on your store can be a landing page, under the right circumstances.

With this in mind, your goal shouldn’t be to set up special pitches or deals limited to certain visitors. You should optimize all of your pages in the same way so that no matter where a shopper arrives, they’ll get the right message.

Let’s take a look at what your landing pages actually are, and how you can make them work harder for you.

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What to consider when taking an online store offline

July 29, 2016 - Leave a comment

If you’ve found success selling your products or services online, you’ve probably given some thought to expanding offline — that is, opening a brick and mortar store.

Switching from a solely online business to a multi-channel merchant is difficult, though. And the harsh reality is that not everyone has the time or resources necessary to do it well… or at all.

If you’re seriously thinking about taking your WooCommerce store offline, there are a couple important things to consider before taking the big leap. If you can sort these factors out beforehand, it’ll give you a better chance of success.

From location to staffing to all things payment-related, here’s the full list of what you should be thinking about before you grow your presence into the “real world.”

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Take payments anywhere with Square for WooCommerce

July 26, 2016 - 70 Comments

TL;DR: Square for WooCommerce has arrived — purchase the extension here and let us know your thoughts.

Important note: at the moment, the extension is only supported in the US, Canada, Australia, and the UK.

Our most requested integration is now available! With Square for WooCommerce, you can take payments online or offline through the same solution, keep your inventory updated, and sync product changes between WooCommerce and Square.

Read on to learn more about what’s available in this new extension, how it works, and how Square can benefit your store.

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