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  2. Getting Started on the WooCommerce Marketplace

Getting Started on the WooCommerce Marketplace

Merchants and builders come to the official WooCommerce Marketplace for trusted products that enable them to create exactly the store they want. We’re looking to grow our offering with extensions and themes that add real value for anyone building a business with WooCommerce. 

The following guidelines will give you insight into the product submission process and how best to position your products for success within our Marketplace.

Get to know your future customers

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WooCommerce transforms a WordPress website into a powerful eCommerce store. From theme designs to complex functionality, customers can purchase what they need from WooCommerce.com. On average, stores running WooCommerce have 15 products.  (Data from WooCommerce Tracker)

Customers purchasing from WooCommerce.com are fans of WordPress and the open-source ethos.

Marketplace customers are:

  • Building stores for themselves.  84% are buying extensions for their own stores.
  • Selling multiple types of products, and non-traditional product types71% sell physical products and 90% sell non-traditional products like digital goods, services, memberships, or tickets. 
  • Taking payments in a variety of ways, often with multiple options.  65% of customers offer a way to pay that isn’t a one-time online purchase, and offer 1.5 types of payment methods on average.
  • Spread across many verticals.  
    • The top verticals by store volume include: fashion and apparel, health and beauty, electronics, food and drink, and design and marketing services.
    • Growing verticals include: books and magazines, charities and causes, education and learning, music, and software.
  • Operating all over the world: The strongest representation is currently in North America, Europe, and Asia.

The most successful products sold in the Marketplace fill a clear business need for store builders and developers. Get to know what customers want firsthand:

Products we’re looking for

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We’re open to any product that helps store owners create successful businesses. Before building or submitting a product for review, please consider the following tips:

  • Get to know our current offering. Browse the WooCommerce Marketplace and see what’s already listed.We prefer submissions that are well-designed, add entirely new functionality, or serve specific audiences in new ways.
  • Know the categories that have minimal or no inventory. We are more likely to accept submissions in categories with a limited offering or have been earmarked for growth. These include:
    • Cryptocurrency.
    • Dropshipping.
    • Fraud prevention.
    • International and localization.
    • Policy and security.
    • Product images and media (i.e., augmented reality, virtual reality).
    • Reporting & analytics.
    • SaaS.
    • SEO and SEM.
    • Themes.
  • Think carefully before submitting products in payments, shipping, advertising, email, or tax.
    • Payments is our most popular category. We’re not currently looking for new payment gateway extensions.
    • We are also less likely to accept new solutions in the shipping, advertising, email or tax categories.
  • Consider which geographies/markets you want to serve. Although the WooCommerce user base is global, focusing on developing products that meet the unique needs of niche/local markets can be a great strategy. We’re specifically looking to better serve countries outside of the U.S. where WooCommerce has a substantial presence:
    • Africa: South Africa
    • Asia: India, Iran, Malaysia, Turkey, and Vietnam
    • Europe: France, Germany, Italy, The Netherlands, and Spain
    • North America: Canada and Mexico
    • South America: Brazil
    • We are also looking for non-English submissions and our current priorities are Spanish, French, and Portuguese languages.
  • Solve a problem for store owners. The most successful products solve a problem that store owners face regularly. The best way to find these problems is to talk to store owners and developers in the WooCommerce community. Consider joining a WordPress or WooCommerce meetup in your area!
  • Be original. WooCommerce is committed to open-source and promoting best practices within the community. We therefore expect our partners to support the intent of GPL and submit products with evidence of meaningful development work. Do not submit forked product. Forked products will be rejected or removed from the Marketplace.

Key technical guidelines

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Partnership options

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The WooCommerce Marketplace offers the following options to generate revenue:

  • Annual subscriptions purchased on WooCommerce.com.
  • Free extensions with a monthly subscription outside of WooCommerce.com (i.e. for SaaS products).

Marketplace Partner agreement

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All partners selling on WooCommerce.com must agree to our Marketplace Partner Agreement.

Partners selling on the WooCommerce Marketplace agree to:

  • Maintain and update products to keep up with developments in both WordPress and WooCommerce, and to continually add new features for customers.
  • Provide support for their products. Support is submitted via WooCommerce.com and then routed directly to partners.
  • Manage their own product pages, hosted on WooCommerce.com.
  • Manage their own Partner page, hosted on WooCommerce.com.
  • Manage their own documentation, hosted on Docs.WooCommerce.com.

Partners earn 70% of net revenue for the sale of their non-exclusive products, meaning the products can be sold on our Marketplace as well as off-platform. “Net revenue” applies to products sold in our Marketplace and means all revenues received by us in connection with a customer’s subscription for the product, less any amounts for discounts, refunds, reversals, affiliate fees, payment processing fees, and taxes. Payments are sent with 30 days of the end of the month.  

Partners also enjoy:

  • Promotion on the Marketplace screen within WooCommerce.
  • Discovery on the official Marketplace, including search benefits from being listed on WooCommerce.com and Docs.WooCommerce.com.
  • Participation in WooCommerce.com sales and promotions, as determined by the WooCommerce team.
  • Customer feedback through ratings, reviews, and support tickets.
  • Recurring revenue through automatic renewals, high renewal rates, and renewal pricing that is not discounted.

Creating a Partner account

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To submit a product for review, you’ll need to create a Partner account:

Get started at Develop WooCommerce.

Requirements for submission

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With a Partner account, a user can submit products through their Partner Dashboard. To do so, log in and go to Products > Submit Product.

From there, Partners can add the complete details for their product, and make and save changes at-will before submitting

Product categories

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On the Business Details screen, Marketplace Partners select the appropriate category for their products:

  • Conversion: Ways to optimize a store for sales, including upsells, cross-sells, order recovery, store alerts, and rewards and loyalty.
  • Customer Service: Products that allow stores to manage pre-and post-purchase interaction with customers.
  • Merchandising: Products that create new types of products for a store.
  • Marketing: Ways to optimize a store for discovery and engagement, including email, automation, advertising, SEO, social integrations, and reporting.
  • Shipping, Delivery & Fulfillment: Products that allow stores to manage physical products, including shipping options, carriers, inventory, and fulfillment.
  • Store Content and Customization: Extensions that customize the eCommerce features of a site, including product pages, checkout, or search features.
  • Store Management: Solutions for managing the nuts-and-bolts of a store, including accounting, taxes, and point of sale.
  • Payments: Products that allow stores to take payments, primarily payment gateways.
  • Themes: Products that set up your store’s design.

Compatibility with other extensions

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  • General consideration:  Extensions that are evaluated and made compatible with other extensions on the WooCommerce.com Marketplace are more likely to be approved. You can enter this information on the Technical Details screen.
  • Cart and Checkout Blocks:  Extensions that customize the cart or checkout pages should support the Cart and Checkout Blocks to ensure the blocked checkout flow is consistent with the shortcode-powered one. Applicable extensions that do not support Cart and Checkout Blocks will likely be rejected.  Documentation and resources on how to integrate extensions can be found here You can select the WooCommerce Blocks attribute on the Technical Details screen to indicate Cart and Checkout Blocks support.
  • Interoperability with top Woo extensions:  Products should not cause any issues to the widely-used Marketplace extensions.  If your product is found to break any of these extensions when installed alongside them, it may be rejected or removed from the Marketplace.  These popular Marketplace extensions include:

Location-specific extensions

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If a product is particularly useful for a certain country or set of countries, you can include that information on the Business Details screen.

Submission status

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Once a product is submitted, it will be locked until a reviewer takes a look and adds comments.  These are the possible Statuses a submission can go through:

  • Draft: Initial status – not submitted for review yet
  • Pending Review: Automated process of technical review. The Build Status is the column where the updated status of this automated process can be checked:
    • No Build – Initial status: not submitted for review yet
    • Queued – Product submission is currently in the queue to be processed
    • Preparing – Preparing the automated review process
    • Processing – Automated processing of the plugin file
    • Testing – Automated tests of the plugin file
    • Successful – Plugin passed all the automated tests
    • Failed – Automated processing and/or tests failed. Find more information on possible errors on the WooCommerce Plugin Developer Handbook
  • Business Review: Automated code review has finished, now waiting for a review from our business team
  • UX Review: Business Review has finished, now waiting detailed product review
  • Changes Required: Our team requested some changes to the product or documentation
  • Approved: Your product has been approved – next steps for launch will be sent via email
  • Rejected:  Your product has been rejected – reasons may be provided in the submission comments

Review process

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Partners can expect a formal decision from a reviewer within 30 to 60 days of submitting a product. Throughout the review, we may provide comments and ask for changes before rejecting or approving a submission.

Submissions go through code, business, and product reviews based on specific guidelines; below is what we look for during each review phase (and what you should be sure to include before submitting).

Code review

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The code review includes automated tests of the extension file (if applicable).

  • Does the product adhere to WordPress extension coding standards and WooCommerce plugin development guidelines? Failure to adhere to coding standards and development guidelines will delay or cause submission to be rejected.
  • Is the code original work? If key components were inspired by another WordPress or WooCommerce product, has proper attribution been included within the code?

Tip: Testing using the WooCommerce linter

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Products offered on the WooCommerce Marketplace are tested with the WooCommerce linter rules, to ensure they comply to our overall coding standards. Here is a step-by-step guide to setting up this linter on your computer and test before formally submitting for Marketplace consideration:

  • Install PHP and Composer on your computer, or in a Docker environment.
  • Inside wp-content, install the woocommerce-sniffs with composer install woocommerce/woocommerce-sniffs.
  • Add a file called pbs-rules-set.xml, which contains this content.
  • Inside wp-content, run the following (replacing “productname” with the directory of your product):

php ./vendor/bin/phpcs --standard=pbs-rules-set.xml --warning-severity=0 --report-source --report-full=phpcs-report.txt --ignore-annotations --extensions=php,html themes/themename

The report will be created in a file called phpcs-report.txt.

Business review

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The business review includes an analysis of product rationale, competition, and developer history.

  • Does the product name adhere to our trademark guidelines? Is it brief (no more than three words)?  Is it unique (not identical to a product listed on a different marketplace)? Is it customer-focused (your customers’ words rather than your own)?
  • Have you provided data or insight, with relevant links, to support why merchants need this product now?
  • Have you provided at least 2 competitive solutions with traction among merchants? Have you highlighted how your solution is substantially better? If relevant, the competitive analysis should include products currently listed in the Marketplace.
  • Does the product have an existing customer base and/or do you have a history of building WooCommerce products, with above average ratings?  
  • Is the proposed price equal to or less than the price of the product sold in other environments?

UX review

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The product review includes a deeper analysis of product UX and UI.

  • Does the product have a single core purpose and use WooCommerce features as much as possible?
  • Does the  product follow all UX guidelines? Products should be built with the UX guidelines in mind in order to provide a consistent user experience. Failure to adhere to UX guidelines can result in delayed launch or rejection. 
  • Can the product function “out-of-the-box” without much configuration? 
  • Have critical flows been thoroughly tested on your product? Ex. WooCommerce Core critical flowsHave you submitted a walkthrough URL showcasing the product frontend and backend setup?
  • Have you submitted a walkthrough URL showcasing the product frontend and backend setup?
  • Have you submitted a demo site URL with the product configured?
  • Have you provided a data file URL to test your product?  For SaaS and 3rd-party integration solutions, have you provided credentials and URL to access a demo account?
  • Have you submitted technical documentation per the provided template

Once a submission successfully passes these review phases, it will be formally approved and proceed to onboarding for launch

Launch requirements

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Our team will provide guidance through each step of the onboarding process, which includes:

  • A fully functioning product that meets Marketplace guidelines.
  • For SaaS products, integration with our billing API.
  • Proper setup and workflows to manage customer support.  
  • Marketing content such as a product logo, screenshots, and product page copy.
  • Documentation such as instructions for how to install, configure, and use the product.
  • Final editorial and UX reviews prior to launch.

Get started

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The WooCommerce Marketplace is open to all. Create an account and get started.

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