WooCommerce is a free plugin for WordPress that turns your site into a fully functioning eCommerce store. We published a guide to the process in our how to setup an eCommerce store with WordPress article a while ago.
However, if you want to take your store to next level and make it more functional and convenient for your customers, there are a number of add-ons or extensions available for WooCommerce.
While WooCommerce itself is free, and is all you need to setup a basic store, some of the plugins for the platform have premium price tags. In this article we will be taking a look at some of the best add-ons available for WooCommerce and explaining how they can help your online business grow without breaking the bank.
Top WooCommerce Extensions
Depending on the type of store you are running and what products you are selling, you will need different functionality to make your shop as efficient and user-friendly as possible. The extensions featured here should improve the core features of your store to make it easier to run and easier to use from a customer perspective.
Abandoned Cart Pro
Tyche Softwares have been making a name for themselves with their high quality plugins for eCommerce stores and the WooCommerce toolkit in particular.
As nearly 70% of online shopping carts are abandoned before checkout, there is a good chance you are missing out on a number of sales, due to customers getting distracted before they have time to complete their transaction. While some customers might come back, there is no guarantee they will and that is where this plugin comes into play.
The Abandoned Cart plugin works in the background and sends those with carts they never checked out an email to remind them and entice them back to the store to complete their transaction. You can even offer the abandonee discounts and coupons in the automated reminder emails to encourage them to come back.
While this plugin costs $79 at the time of writing, if you calculate your average cart price and estimate how much revenue you are missing out on due to abandonment issues, you will probably find this plugin will pay for itself very quickly.
Upgraded the ways your store can take payments is an ideal way to make it look more professional to customers. There are many payment gateway plugins for WooCommerce but Authorize.net is one of our favourites. It allows you to take credit card payments directly from your site.
Not only that but is allows you to take payments for subscriptions and pre-orders making it ideal for stores that sell services as well as individual products. Customers can also securely save their payment details, making it even easier for them to complete a transaction without having to re-enter their details once again.
Other popular payment gateways add-ons for WooCommerce include PayPal Pro and Amazon FPS Gateway . The latter allows your customers to pay via their Amazon account and use their Amazon balance for extra trust and convenience. We all know how easy and addictive the Amazon checkout process is.
This plugin allows your store to become a multi-vendor marketplace like Etsy or Creative Market. With this extension you can add additional vendors to your store and then assign products to them or let them create their own. You can set the levels of commission they receive from a sale and also list their products alongside your own and those from other vendors.
If you are creating a site in partnership with a few other retailers or looking to build a community platform for selling a range of goods then the Product Vendors add-on is essential.
This add-on gives you the ability list deals with a deadline at your store. You can set a date and time for when deal will expire to help persuade users to take advantage of your discounts and offers.
The plugin adds a banner to each participating product which shows the level of discount, number sold and time remaining for the deal. These banners can be customised to match your store design and show the information you want.
This is a simple to setup but effective plugin that can help drive sales by offering time limited discounts and deals.
Upgrade the standard WooCommerce cart with an AJAX powered shopping cart. Now when a customer adds an item to their cart, the product is added instantly with no page reload required.
This makes browsing and shopping at your store a less time consuming and frustrating experience for the user. A cart is shown on the page at all times allowing users to quickly edit amounts and arrange their basket without having to refresh the page.
This is another simple addon but one that vastly improves the shopping experience allowing your store to compete with the big brands on usability
Compare Products Pro
If you are selling multiple products in the same category then allowing your customers to compare them will make using your store a less frustrating experience.
The plugin adds a compare this button to products allow your customers to compare their features on one page. There isn’t much to say about this plugin apart from that it makes the buying decision easier for your customers, which is always a good thing.
Booking and Appointment Plugin
This is another plugin from Tyche Softwares and one that allows your store to capture a booking time and date for each product, allowing the site to function as a booking and appointment system.
With this plugin you can create a hotel booking system, sell tickets or book services and appointments for all types of businesses and occasions. All while using WooCommerce and WordPress. While there are lots of plugins that attempt this feature set, this one does it the best and offers the most features whilst still being easy to setup and manage.
The plugins will calculate the shipping price based on the size of your products and the delivery option selected.
Another popular and useful shipping add-on is the Shipment Tracker which as the name suggest, allows your customers to track their orders as they make their way to them. It supports tracking links from the major providers including ParcelForce, UPS, Australia Post and DHL. It’s a good way to provide peace of mind for your customers while they wait for their order to arrive and prevent them from emailing you for updates.
If you sell a recurring product such as a magazine or access to a service, then being able to take payments on a regular basis is essential. WooCommerce have their own plugin for this very feature but it’s also the most expensive option out there.
Other less expensive options include PayPal Digital Goods and the aforementioned Authorize.net CIM. While these plugins can be quite pricey, if you look at how much revenue you generate from each transaction they can soon pay for themselves.
Once your store starts generating some income, it’s a good idea to reinvest a portion of the profits into improving the user experience and its functionality. This is a worthwhile investment as it can not only increase sales but can also make your life easier by automating some of the tasks involved in running an online store.
While these plugins do cost money, they should be able to increase your bottom line by making shopping at your store a more inviting and accessible experience all round.