Round 2: Update to WooCommerce 3.5.1+ before WordPress 5.0

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WooCommerce 2.6 has shipping zones (and more!)

June 14, 2016 - 93 Comments

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

If you’re a developer looking for technical details, read the release post on the Develop WooCommerce blog here.

It’s been a few months since our last major update, and in that time, we’ve been working on a veritable smorgasbord of improvements to WooCommerce. For 2.6, we’ve:

  • Added shipping zones
  • Improved the cart experience
  • Created a new My Account area design
  • Added new options for filtering products
  • Made updates to the payment options available through the onboarding wizard
  • Thrown in some goodies for developers, including a new payment tokenization and the alignment of our API with the WordPress REST API

That’s a lot of stuff for you to explore in the release of Zipping Zebra, so let’s dig into the details.

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The First 5 Things You Should Customize in WooCommerce

June 7, 2016 - 4 Comments

Starting a WooCommerce store? You’ve got a lot to consider, from what you plan on selling to how you’re going to market it.

Deciding what to start with first is tricky. As you’re setting up your store, you have a lot of decisions to make, and likely not a lot of time to make them in. You may wonder what you should set up or customize first to make the rest of the process as smooth as possible.

To help you properly prioritize, we’ve put together this short list of the first few things you should customize in WooCommerce. These items will get you started on the right foot and ensure you have the groundwork covered before you add products or set up marketing methods.

Let’s take a look at the first five things that should be customized on any new WooCommerce site, plus some helpful articles that will give you a deeper dive into getting these aspects right as you work on building your store.

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How to prepare your WooCommerce store for any release

May 25, 2016 - 21 Comments

With the release of WooCommerce 2.6 on the horizon, we imagine you’re all excited to explore the newest features available for running your online store. And a bit apprehensive, perhaps, to go through the update process once more.

The beauty of the open source world of WordPress development is that it allows virtually anyone to create virtually anything for this platform we call home. The downside is that it’s nearly impossible to predict what will happen when you put any given combination of those thousands upon thousands of creations in different environments under different circumstances.

We pride ourselves on thoroughly testing WooCommerce and its extensions, but the unfortunate reality is this: conflicts still happen. That’s why we recommend being prepared in advance for releases and major updates, so in the event of an issue, you can roll right back.

“But how do you get prepared?” We’re so happy you asked. Here’s how to efficiently set up backups and testing for your WooCommerce store so you’re ready for anything.

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It’s here: a simpler way to connect services to your store without leaving WooCommerce

May 4, 2016 - 26 Comments

TL;DR: We’re building a way to connect services to WooCommerce that makes use of hosted components to simplify the process and create a better experience.

If you’d like to get involved in testing, join us now.

If you want to know more, read on or check out our post on the developer blog.

A few weeks ago at WooConf, Matt Mullenweg gave a sneak peek at a project we’ve been excitedly working on. Now, we’re ready to share it with the world.

woocommerce connect

WooCommerce Connect is a big part of our vision for the future of WooCommerce. Right now, Connect has just started alpha testing as a feature extension. If all goes well, we hope to make it part of WooCommerce core and available to everyone.

So, without further ado, let’s dive into what we’re trying to accomplish with Connect, how it all works, where the feature currently stands and how you can get involved.

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WooCommerce Security: The 7 Things You Should Do First

February 15, 2016 - 12 Comments

While security measures are built into WordPress and WooCommerce out of the box, there are a few basic things new store owners should be doing to keep their customers, team, and data safe in the event of those worst-case scenarios.

Here are the seven things all new WooCommerce store owners should do first.

New store? Quickly detect fraudulent transactions with NS8 Protect.

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Tips for Selling Digital Products with WooCommerce

February 4, 2016 - 7 Comments

Not all eCommerce stores specialize in physical products. Some — perhaps yours? — are about the business of selling digital products, like audio files, books, PDFs, video tutorials, games, or even stock photography.

Stores with digital products might not look different from those with physical ones, but they aren’t exactly the same. In fact, they require careful handling, and attention paid to different aspects that may not even need considered otherwise.

If you have or are starting a store with digital or downloadable products, following a few specific guidelines can ensure that your customers are happy with their purchases. It can also help you create a shopping experience that converts more shoppers into paid customers, and even draws more searchers to your store.

Let’s take a look at some tips that can help you create a stronger digital store using WooCommerce.

Got an existing WooCommerce store selling digital products and looking to drive more sales? Try One Page Checkout.

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WooCommerce 2.5: Dashing Dolphin means speed

January 18, 2016 - 21 Comments

TL;DR: WooCommerce version 2.5 is here – update via your WordPress Dashboard. To make the process as smooth as possible, make a backup, update your extensions, view our update guide, and then update WooCommerce.

If you’re a developer looking for technical details, read the release post on the Develop WooCommerce blog here.

It’s a new year and we have a new version of WooCommerce for you. The last version of WooCommerce focused on the onboarding experience to help store owners get up and running quickly.

This latest version focuses on getting the store itself to run quickly, and is aptly named Dashing Dolphin.

Let’s take a closer look at WooCommerce 2.5.

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10 Free WooCommerce Extensions for New Stores

January 18, 2016 - 25 Comments

Whether you’re selling a single subscription service or hundreds of unique items sourced globally — building and launching your WooCommerce store is a rewarding experience.

With so much to consider during setup — from payments to shipping to marketing — it’s not unusual to be cautious about costs. You certainly don’t want to break the bank before you’ve sold anything!

WooCommerce is a free platform that can be added and expanded upon with nearly endless extensions — including some great free ones.

From monitoring traffic to abandoned cart emails to live chat, here are some of our favorite free WooCommerce extensions.

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The future of Woo support: how we’re planning to grow and improve

December 15, 2015 - 23 Comments

tl;dr: Woo support has struggled in recent months to keep up with demand due to the rapid growth of WooCommerce. We want you to know that we are committed to improving, so we fulfill our mission of helping customers be successful.

Woo support has struggled in recent months to keep up with demand. This has led to long ticket response times, and our customers have been expressing frustration about this.

Because we believe in open and honest communication, we want to explain why this is the case, and show you in detail what we plan to do (and are doing) about it.

Read on to learn what’s going on and what we’re doing about it, and to see details on the four-point improvement plan for Woo support that is already in action.

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10 WooCommerce extensions for holiday success

October 30, 2015 - 1 Comment

We’ve been talking about the holidays quite a lot lately. We’ve stressed the importance of being prepared, how to find out what your customers want, and the actions you should take to have a stress-free season.

Having said all that, if you don’t already have the wheels in motion for some holiday sales or events on your WooCommerce store, it’s not too late! In fact, you’ve still got plenty of time to come up with some stellar holiday tactics, thanks in part to WooCommerce’s flexibility and hundreds of easy-to-add extensions.

To give you the push you need to start your planning — or just to help you along, if your plans are well underway — we’ve collected ten of our favorite extensions for holiday success. From shipping add-ons to kind gestures, these extensions will help you attract more shoppers, ship more packages, and have the best holiday ever.

Interested? Have a look at what we’ve picked out just for you.

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WooCommerce reaches 10M downloads, powers 30% of online stores

October 2, 2015 - 9 Comments

It seems like yesterday that we reached 7 million downloads of WooCommerce. Actually, it was a few short months ago that we hit that big milestone. “How long would it take us to hit 10 million?” we all wondered.

Well, now we know: almost exactly four years.

That milestone arrived this week, much sooner than expected. And with it came another: WooCommerce is powering 30% of all online stores.

Woo for Woo!
Woo for Woo!

One of our co-founders, Mark Forrester, had this to say about the pair of momentous milestones:

This represents a hell of a lot to us.

Countless lines of code, including many community contributions, and much hard work from our core developers constantly improving the WordPress eCommerce experience. Tens of thousands of support tickets from all sorts of users with all sorts of queries, helped by our superbly knowledgeable Ninja squads. And mountains of data and interactions ensuring our growth team get WooCommerce in front of the right people, providing all the tools and content for them to sell all the things.

Looking back at our milestones on the blog, together with all WooCommerce stats, it signifies fast and colossal growth. A trajectory we plan to continue.

Woo!
30% of online stores are now powered by WooCommerce, earning a big thumbs-up from Hiro.

Let’s take a closer look at our rapid growth, plus a peek at what’s next for all things Woo.

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Tips for starting an international WooCommerce store

September 29, 2015 - 10 Comments

Planning to start your own online store is a big move. It’s an even bigger move when you’re doing it outside of the US or Canada, or in a country where English isn’t the language of choice.

If you’re an international WooCommerce user, or will have international customers, there are a few special things you’ll want to consider as you build your store. These impact everything from your language to your accepted currencies to the taxes you charge. While it’s going to require a little more work up front, the end result will surely be worth it.

Here are our best tips for those of you about to start up your very own worldwide WooCommerce store — or expand into international territories.

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12 ways to show kindness to your customers with WooCommerce

September 21, 2015 - 14 Comments

Kindness is a wonderful and powerful thing. It’s also sometimes completely unexpected in online stores, where the shopping experience is so often reduced to “is it in stock?” and “how quickly can I get it?”

Your customers’ wants and needs are complex, however. In the long run, far more matters to them than finding the store with the fastest shipping. Loyalty isn’t just inspired by efficiency and price — it can be dramatically influenced by how well you treat the people who shop with you.

Today, we’ve compiled 12 unique ways you can show kindness to your customers with your WooCommerce store. From being more flexible to staying connected to doing small, simple things that will put a smile on your face, these are methods that will give you the power to fulfill the greatest unspoken need of your customers:

Don’t forget, a person’s greatest emotional need is to feel appreciated. — H. Jackson Brown Jr.

Read on to learn about all the ways you can show a little more kindness, and the WooCommerce extensions you can use to make this possible.

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Lessons learned from releasing WooCommerce 2.4

August 26, 2015 - 19 Comments

Just over two weeks ago, we launched WooCommerce version 2.4, the Helpful Hedgehog. From our standpoint, we thought the release went well. However, while we thought this was a pretty good release, we think we can do better.

In the interest of openness, we thought we’d share some of our observations from this release. We also wanted to share what we learned as we deployed 2.4, and we’re planning to do better for the next release.

Let’s start with what went well.

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How to evaluate a plugin for your WooCommerce store

August 21, 2015 - 7 Comments

Plugins are awesome — that’s a fact. They make incredible things possible with WordPress, and can take your website or WooCommerce-powered store to new heights.

But plugins can also be problematic. A rogue update, an untested bit of code, an incompatibility between two extensions… in the blink of an eye, you can go from fully functional to completely inoperable. And let’s not even talk about how easy it is to get caught up in the desire to install more plugins, which has its own drawbacks.

Before installing any plugin, you should evaluate it against a list of pre-established criteria. This evaluation doesn’t have to take long, and your can set your own criteria, because what matters to you might not be important to someone else. But doing a few minutes of due diligence could prevent hours of headaches, not to mention customer complaints and lost sales.

Today, we’re going to share a few of the things you should do when evaluating a WordPress plugin for possible use with your WooCommerce store. Keep reading to learn more about this process and the steps you should take.

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Storefront 1.5 arrives, brings Right-to-Left support

August 19, 2015 - 15 Comments

TL;DR: Storefront version 1.5 has arrived – upgrade via your WordPress dashboard or try it for the first time by downloading a copy here. Enjoy!

The last major release of Storefront saw us add many accessibility improvements and achieve the “accessibility ready” tag on wordpress.org.

That release went a long way towards making Storefront a more rounded solution for store owners looking to make their online shops accessible to the widest audience possible. Storefront 1.5 carries on that theme of enabling, and achieves another coveted tag on wordpress.org.

sf1.5
Introducing Storefront 1.5

Here’s a look at some of the biggest chances in Storefront 1.5.

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