What is WooCommerce?
WooCommerce is a WordPress plugin that serves as an e-Commerce solution for businesses on WordPress. It is open source, allowing developers to create numerous extensions in order to tailor the tool directly to your needs. This customization ecosphere has made WooCommerce one of the most popular e-Commerce solutions available today, reportedly used by 30% of online stores.
WooCommerce (https://wordpress.org/plugins/woocommerce/) is a “free” plugin for Wordpress. This means that aside from the cost of hosting a WordPress site, users can get the WooCommerce plugin for free.
The way that WooCommerce generates revenue is through their extensions. While there are many free extensions available, but premium extensions vary in price.
Who Owns WooCommerce?
WooCommerce is owned by Automattic, who is the WordPress.com operator and handles most of the first party WordPress software. As such, it is easily integrated into any WordPress site.
New development on WooCommerce can be done by anyone. The beauty of open source tools is that anyone with an idea and the ability to program can contribute to the project.
How Does WooCommerce Work?
To use WooCommerce for their online store, users begin by creating their own WordPress site. Then you can download the WooCommerce plugin and determine what all you need to build a successful store.
WooCommerce is incredibly flexible, allowing users to pick and choose exactly what they want or need for their store. You pick the theme, tools, and extensions that you need, and nothing more. If you want all free extensions, all you have to pay is the fees to host your site.
The WordPress.org extension rating system allows the best extensions to aggregate to the top. Users can more easily compare apples to apples by factoring in rating as well as price. If you’re willing to pay for a superior tool, you can get all the best extensions. If you’re on a budget, you can use inferior extensions for free or cheap.
If the extension you want does not yet exist, you can create it yourself to be offered as a plugin or extension on WordPress.org. Instead of being limited to what the creator wants to include, WooCommerce allows any business to add any feature they choose.
Is WooCommerce Right For Me?
As with any e-Commerce solution, there are important facets to consider before choosing WooCommerce as the best option for your store.
The biggest question for determining whether you should use WooCommerce is if you currently use WordPress for your online business, or plan to in the future. Since WooCommerce exists only as a plugin and not a standalone software, it only works for WordPress sites. If your store is on WordPress already, if you plan on migrating from your present site, or if you want to create your new business on WordPress, WooCommerce might be perfect for you.
Another important element to consider is whether you are willing to invest the time to find and set up the extensions that you need, or to pay a developer to do so. Unlike other e-Commerce solutions, WooCommerce is sold and set up piecemeal, which takes some time and tech savvy. Users need to have a keen understanding of WordPress.org, or must hire someone to manage the site.
Who uses WooCommerce
Quite a few businesses use WooCommerce as their e-Commerce solution of choice. These businesses include
- LUVD - http://luvd.com/
- Xero Shoes - https://xeroshoes.com/
- ZANEROBE - https://zanerobe.com/
- LiFE! - http://www.lifeliveitup.com.au/