Many of today’s up-and-coming entrepreneurs choose to start out on online selling platforms and social media marketplaces. But for someone who heads a small- or medium-sized enterprise (SME) or startup, building a dedicated e-commerce website is the next logical step if the goal is to strengthen the company’s brand and achieve a higher level of credibility in the market.
Having your own website for selling your products and services will definitely increase your online presence and demonstrate a serious commitment to your home industry and its workings. You’ll also have more control over your customer experience, or CX, than if you were on an e-commerce platform or social media—especially with regard to aspects like navigating your website and settling online checkout. Building a dedicated e-commerce website will allow you to curate almost every little detail of the online shopping experience, which makes it worth the investment.
One open-source e-commerce platform that’s quite popular among rising startups and SME owners is WooCommerce. Let’s learn about WooCommerce and why it’s often top of mind for entrepreneurs looking to launch their own e-commerce websites.
What Is WooCommerce?
WooCommerce is an open-source e-commerce plugin that can transform any WordPress website into an e-commerce site. Since its release in 2011, WooCommerce has been a boon to many entrepreneurs who’ve used the WordPress content management system to craft online spaces for themselves and broker fulfilling new relationships with members of their target audience.
Among other things, the WooCommerce plugin promises a user-friendly dashboard that will let an online entrepreneur oversee practically every aspect of their e-commerce website. It also works reliably on all devices, like smartphones and laptops, and is free to download. For those reasons, WooCommerce is a sought-after choice for entrepreneurs who got their start with modest budgets and technical knowledge, like bloggers, sports entrepreneurs, corporate coaches, and the like.
What Are WooCommerce’s Unique Features?
The following features are considered highlights of using WooCommerce to build an e-commerce website:
1) Simple Product Management
WooCommerce’s simplified product management system allows users to add and configure different types of products to their website with ease. If you’re using WooCommerce on your WordPress site, it won’t be hard to set up product variations—like different sizes, colors, and pricing—and organize them into categories. That means that your customers can navigate your online store without hassle.
As a new user, you'll appreciate how this feature streamlines the often difficult task of product administration. With WooCommerce installed, you can expect to spend less time on manual tasks and more time growing your online business.
2) Multiple Payment Gateway Integrations
One of the biggest advantages of using this plugin is that it allows you to integrate different WooCommerce payment gateway options into your website. An example of a payment gateway WooCommerce is compatible with is Maya Business’s Maya Checkout, which enables customers to secure online payments through Maya.
This option ensures that you can cater to the preferences of customers who want to complete their transactions using Maya’s payment gateway, thus improving their overall shopping experience. Checkout plugins like these can help boost sales, since customers who are presented with a variety of convenient payment options are more likely to complete a purchase on your website.
3) A Wide Variety of E-Commerce Extensions
WooCommerce also boasts an extensive library of extensions that you can use for your online store. Becoming a WooCommerce client also means that you can take advantage of its marketing platforms for building brand awareness as well as customer service extensions that can improve your customer relations. These come in addition to excellent shipping and delivery options that will make it easy to stay on top of your order fulfillment. Thanks to this level of customizability, an e-commerce entrepreneur like you will be better poised to scale and diversify their online business.
How You Can Use WooCommerce to Change Things Up for Your E-Commerce Store
WooCommerce’s simple integration and wide array of e-commerce add-ons will make setting up your online store a breeze. However, simply incorporating this plugin into your website won’t be enough to propel your business to success. You’ll want to utilize the full extent of WooCommerce’s capabilities so that you effortlessly do the following:
1) Design an E-commerce Website That Reflects Your Brand and Your Intended Experience
First, use WooCommerce’s suite of tools to design an e-commerce website that aligns perfectly with your brand and business objectives. Take advantage of its tool set to tweak aspects like your website layout and engineer a particular type of experience for your customers, which is what will help you establish a distinctive brand identity.
2) Immerse Your Customers in Your Offerings
WooCommerce will also make it easy for you to set up and manage a catalog whether you're selling physical or digital products or offering bespoke services. Its user-friendly interface will simplify the process of adding products to your store with detailed descriptions, high-definition images, and updated pricing.
With such tools at your disposal, populate your e-commerce website with relevant content and listings. Make sure that every customer who visits your website comes away with the insight they’re looking for.
3) Keep Track of Your E-Commerce Performance
Don’t forget to analyze metrics like your online revenues, conversion rate, and bounce rate so that you can pivot your business in a different direction as needed. Keep abreast of market demands, and look for the right timing and opportunities to expand your e-commerce revenue streams.
4) Improve Your Customers’ Online Shopping Experience
Good customer experience is a touchstone of successful e-commerce operations, and WooCommerce excels in this regard. There are several features this plugin offers to enhance your customers' online shopping journey, including the following:
- Intuitive navigation
- Organized product listing
- An optimized checkout process
Learn how to use these to create a seamless shopping experience for your customers, which in turn will bolster both their satisfaction and your online sales.
If you’re already used to the convenience of selling from social media or from a massive e-commerce platform, it may make you anxious to start doing business from your very own e-commerce website. But with a plugin like WooCommerce, it won’t be hard to take full advantage of your creative independence and autonomy as an online entrepreneur and forge a customer experience that truly resonates with your business goals and values.