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Revolution and evolution: The power of WordPress and WooCommerce

July 5, 2017 - 7 Comments

Imagine you live in a major city but WordPress is virtually unknown. Websites with presence are run by the government, there’s no WordCamp or meetup or startup culture, and people think you make keyboards when you say you’re a computer engineer.

Now imagine that same city five years later. A multitude of diversified voices can be heard via blogs and websites, the most recent WordCamp attracts 300+ attendees, its online WordPress community has 5000+ registered members, at least 10 new WordPress business are born each year, and WooCommerce helps dozens of businesses start in living rooms and garages. And the shift began when everyone said a task was impossible.

This is the story of Kathmandu and Sakin Shrestha.

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Get up and running faster: Product importer, shipping service, extension management

June 28, 2017 - 20 Comments

TL;DR: An update is available for WooCommerce! To make the process as smooth as possible, view our documentation on how to update , make a backup, update your extensions, and finally update WooCommerce via your WordPress Dashboard.

Looking for technical details? Read “ WooCommerce 3.1 has landed” at the Develop WooCommerce blog.

Since our 3.0 release in April, we’ve been working on a slew of improvements to make it faster and simpler to get up and running with WooCommerce:

  • Save time with the new, built-in import/export feature to add and update product information
  • Manage WooCommerce.com subscriptions directly in WooCommerce
  • Ship products more easily in the US and Canada by setting up WooCommerce Shipping

Existing stores also have new features to enhance their online storefronts — inline ‘Terms and Conditions’ in checkout, embedded videos and more in short descriptions — and improve their workflow — assigning an order to a customer for payment, updating stock status for all variations at once. And we added search helpers for developers.

That’s a lot!l Let’s dig into details.

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Cheers to our lucky golden ticket winner

June 27, 2017 - 4 Comments

Our annual Golden Ticket Competition picks one lucky person for a trip to WooConf, on us! This year the WooCommerce Developers Conference is in Seattle, and we’re pleased to announce our winner is Kevin Eulenberg. Woo!

Kevin  is a  frontend developer , UX interface designer , co-founder of Froux.co, passionate musician and vinyl lover and, of course, fan of open eCommerce. His story of relaunching Canvasco.de on WooCommerce stood out, and we can’t wait for you to meet him at WooConf in October.

Read on for more about Kevin, his WooCommerce story and why he landed the golden ticket.

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Why you need to pick a marketing channel

June 12, 2017 - 10 Comments

Owning a Cinnabon at the mall means you’re only competing against the cookie store that’s also in that same mall. People who like cinnamon will stop by your store, and people who like oatmeal will probably visit the cookie store. You need not do much marketing because you’re only competing against one or two stores.

It’s very different online — you’re competing against the world. There isn’t just one store that sells a competing product. There are dozens, maybe hundreds, and some have big wallets, such as Amazon and Walmart.

So if you launch your online store and neglect to do any marketing, you lose your customers to established competitors.

Read on for why you need to pick a marketing channel.

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Q&A with Thrive, a digital agency from the Gold Coast of Australia

June 9, 2017 - 2 Comments

The Gold Coast of Australia is a highly sought-after tourist destination with its sunny sub-tropical climate, perfect beaches, surf culture, and buzzing nightlife.

Tourism aside, it’s a major film production hub and – the home of Thrive, a digital agency integrating WooCommerce beautifully into their clients’ stores.

Read on for our Q&A interview with Thrive’s founder, including why they chose WordPress, some projects they’ve taken on and their advice for people new to WooCommerce.

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Four fresh businesses powered by WooCommerce Bookings

June 6, 2017 - 13 Comments

WooCommerce Bookings can help you do amazing things, whether your goal is to sell time, accept appointments online, or rent products.

Today we’re shining a light on some creative, fun businesses that are using Bookings to power stores and bring their unique ideas to life — ice cream on demand, yes, please! We’re also excited to announce our new WooBookings Bundle!

Read on to learn four ways this extension is being used out in the wild.

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3 amazing things you can do with WooCommerce Bookings

May 30, 2017 - 14 Comments

One of our longtime favorite extensions for WooCommerce is WooCommerce Bookings. It’s packed with functionality that helps businesses of all types function, from agencies to boutiques to restaurants.

But if you’ve never taken a good look at Bookings, you might not realize everything it’s capable of. This powerful extension can do much more than reserve hotel rooms or book appointments for their next haircut. Even better – if you’re setting up a new store it’s available in one of our potent bundles – check out the WooBookings Bundle.

Let’s look at how you can use WooCommerce Bookings to sell your time, organize events, and even rent products — and how these amazing options might translate into more money for your (yes, your) business.

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Four ways to make managing your store’s updates easier

May 19, 2017 - 6 Comments

One of the most common things we hear from customers contacting us for support is that you really, really hate updating your store.

We get it. It’s not fun. It’s kind of nerve-wracking, right? You don’t always know what things are going to look like on the other side of the update.

But updating WooCommerce, its extensions, and WordPress itself doesn’t have to be a pain in the you-know-where. It might never be a pleasant experience, but if you know how to handle it, you can all but eliminate those “my product pages look weird” and “this plugin isn’t working right” experiences.

Today we’re going to show you four ways to better manage updates to your WooCommerce store, and how handling updates in these ways can save you time, keep your store running smoothly, and completely eliminate the pounding headache you seem to get every time you see the phrase “an update is available” in your WordPress dashboard.

Let’s get started.

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How to create and use backups with WooCommerce

May 18, 2017 - 15 Comments

Backups — it’s a daunting word, isn’t it? Just hearing it probably makes you think of your valuable time wasted on a bunch of complicated, manual processes involving databases and FTP directories.

But all of this is a myth we’re happy to bust. The truth is this: thanks to modern plugins, it’s now fast and incredibly easy to make backups for WooCommerce — and restore them if the need arises.

You already know you need to be making backups of your store and its data. But what you might not know is how to create and manage those backups without giving yourself a headache.

Today we’re going to show you how. Read on to find out how you can get your store backed up for any situation, and how to properly use backups in the event of an emergency.

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Win a golden ticket to WooConf

May 12, 2017 - 1 Comment

We’re hosting a conference this October for WooCommerce developers, the one and only WooConf! In fact early bird tickets went on sale just last week.

Our theme for this year is open eCommerce, and in the spirit of the gathering we’re running our golden ticket competition for the third time. One lucky person will win a paid trip to join us at WooConf for two days of talks, workshops, and learning.

In 2014 Sinisa from OVER Clothing won the golden ticket and joined us in San Francisco. Last year Steven Sashen of Xero Shoes and Chris from Advantage Learn were joint winners and made it all the way to Austin.

Perhaps this time it’ll be you who we see in Seattle? Read on to find out how you can enter.

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Announcing WooConf 2017: get all the details and reserve your spot

May 2, 2017 - 18 Comments

The last two WooCommerce Conferences were a treat, bringing the WooCommerce community to San Francisco and then Austin for multiple days of talks, workshops, and invaluable impromptu chats between sponsors, developers, and our support team.

We’re excited to announce that we’re bringing WooConf back for a third round in October 2017, this time in Seattle, Washington. And with this iteration we’re narrowing our focus to provide the best experience we can for developers, from agency owners to freelancers.

Keep reading to get more details on this year’s WooConf, plus find out how you can save $200 by buying your ticket now.

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Start your new store quickly with PayPal Business in a Box

May 1, 2017 - 9 Comments

It’s National Small Business Week here in the United States, a seven day period where we celebrate small businesses and all they do. Over half of Americans own or work for a small business, and about two thirds of the country’s new jobs come from them every year.

This week is a reminder for us that there’s more work to be done to support small businesses. Having a free, open-source platform and hundreds of extensions and integrations is definitely a step in the right direction. But we’re always looking for ways to do more for you and your business.

With that in goal mind, today we’re happy to announce PayPal Business in a Box, a brand new program from PayPal that’s designed to help small business owners quickly start or grow an online store.

Read on to learn what Business in a Box is, what’s included in the “box,” and how it can help you get your own small business up and running.

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Sprout new customers with top marketing extensions

April 26, 2017 - 8 Comments

Who doesn’t like spring? The sun is shining, birds are singing, and the flowers and trees are at their brightest. (Although if you have allergies, that last bit might not make the season seem so nice.)

It’s spring for those of us in the northern hemisphere, and we’re celebrating all it brings by collecting marketing extensions that will put a little bit of the season into your store.

From tools that help you grow your sales to extensions that will spruce up your product pages, here are twelve ways you can bring new life to any WooCommerce store.

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Grow your reach and drive sales with Facebook for WooCommerce

April 21, 2017 - 38 Comments

At WooCommerce we’re passionate about the idea of eCommerce being open. By that we mean open to all budgets and an array of development skill levels, open to all locations, and open to everything from the simplest to most customized business ideas you can throw at it.

Today we’re proud to announce Facebook for WooCommerce, a free integration that opens up Facebook’s audience of more than 1 billion people to Woo store owners. It’s a significant step in our quest to democratize commerce on WordPress.

Read on to learn more about the two powerful ways this extension helps grow businesses.

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How to unlock the power of WooCommerce on mobile

April 18, 2017 - 9 Comments

As manufacturers pack more power into mobile devices — and they become readily available worldwide — our tendency to use them for everything possible has risen dramatically.

Why pick up a laptop or sit in front of a desktop computer if you can accomplish the same task on your cell phone? Larger screen sizes and improved hardware mean they’re just as easy to use for games, research, note taking… and shopping online.

But a consumer viewing your store from their phone is much different than them buying from it. An iAquire and SurveyMonkey study found that 40% of mobile users will leave a website and go back to their search results if the first site they visit isn’t mobile-friendly.

Imagine reducing your bounce rate by 40%. Now imagine what keeping more of those visitors on your store might do for your sales.

If your WooCommerce-powered store isn’t accommodating to mobile visitors, you’re leaving money on the table. Fortunately, there are a few simple ways to improve your store — without undergoing a costly redesign — that will help you keep more shoppers on your store, plus potentially improve the number of purchases they make.

Let’s take a look at how you can unlock WooCommerce’s hidden power for mobile shoppers using built-in design options, ideal payment gateways, and a few amazing extensions.

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Best practices for reviews with WooCommerce

April 13, 2017 - 6 Comments

Potential customers consider a lot of factors before making a purchase, from the visual appeal of a product to its cost to your store’s shipping speed and fees. And if they’ve never purchased from you before, they probably also read reviews — both about you and the item they’re considering.

According to a customer service survey sponsored by Zendesk, 88% of shoppers in the United States make their purchasing decision based, in part, on reviews:

Both positive and negative reviews have a big impact on whether or not shoppers make a purchase. (Image source: Zendesk)

Both positive and negative reviews can help someone make a decision, with positive feedback making a slightly bigger dent (90% vs 86%).

What does this mean for you? Something big: reviews can make a serious impact on your sales. The more you have, the better a shopper can evaluate a product. And better evaluations mean more purchases and less returns.

Collecting feedback is crucial for your WooCommerce store, and there are some optimal ways to do it. And once you have reviews aplenty, there are some amazing ways to use them, some of which go well beyond the product page.

Let’s take a look at some best practices for collecting and using your reviews with WooCommerce, whether you’re new to selling online or an eCommerce expert.

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