WordPress is one of the most popular and versatile content management systems, with countless plugins that can be used to create a fully-featured eCommerce website. With WordPress, you have access to powerful tools that allow you to easily add products and manage orders all from within your website. But can WordPress be used for eCommerce?
WordPress can be used for eCommerce. You can use Shopify integrated using the Buy Button or install the WooCommerce plugin to add eCommerce functionality to your WordPress website. Both methods provide users with tools for adding product catalogs, discounts, payment gateways, and order tracking.
Read on for a rundown of the features that make WordPress a great platform for eCommerce and its potential drawbacks.
2 Ways you can create an online store with WordPress
WordPress has many features that make setting up an online store easy and accessible for those who don’t know how to code. With the help of plugins, it is possible to set up a fully functioning store in a breeze.
Shopify is the best eCommerce platform in the world, with features such as International Pricing, Multi-Currency, the biggest app store with over 10,000 apps, the best-converting checkout, the best payment gateway fees with ShopPay, and much more.
From my experience, it’s MUCH better for eCommerce than WooCommerce, but it does have a few little drawbacks compared.
With WooCommerce, the plugin directly integrates into WordPress, whereas Shopify simply only allows you to add the checkout buttons to your WordPress pages.
This is up to you to decide which route you want to take. You can see the extensive guides we have created for Shopify to see how great it is.
Specifically, the WooCommerce commercial plugin allows you to create a sophisticated online store with many products and customization options. The plugin is easy to use, even for those new to WordPress or eCommerce.
Here are a few features that make WooCommerce one of the best eCommerce options for WordPress users:
- Customizable stores. WooCommerce allows users to personalize the look and feel of their store. It also includes many different themes, so you can choose a style that suits your brand and provides your customers with the best shopping experience.
- User-friendly interface and dashboard. The WooCommerce plugin provides an intuitive and user-friendly interface, which makes it easy for new users to set up and manage their stores. You can easily add products and manage orders from the convenient dashboard, so you can focus on running your business and delighting your customers.
- Extensive support options. If you need help setting up or managing your WooCommerce store, you can find help and support resources easily. The plugin features extensive documentation and tutorials to help you get the most out of your store. In addition, you can find many community resources to help you with questions or issues as they arise.
Pro Tip: To get started with WooCommerce on WordPress, follow these quick steps:
- Install the WooCommerce plugin on your WordPress website.
- Configure your store settings and add products to your catalog.
- Choose a theme to customize the look and feel of your store.
- Promote your store and start driving traffic.
Here’s an in-depth video tutorial on how to create a WordPress eCommerce site using WooCommerce:
The pros of using WordPress for eCommerce
WordPress is an excellent platform for eCommerce for many reasons. Here are just a few of the main benefits:
WordPress is flexible & scalable
WordPress is highly flexible, allowing you to easily customize your store’s features and functionality to suit your business needs. In addition, you can quickly scale your store as it grows and evolves without worrying about migrating to a new platform.
Here are some ways that you can make your WordPress store more flexible and scalable:
- Add plugins or third-party tools, such as analytics tools or content marketing tools, to extend the functionality of your site.
- Invest in an SEO-friendly theme to improve your search engine rankings and website visibility.
- Choose a theme with a responsive design to ensure that your store’s look and feel can be easily viewed and browsed on any device, such as a mobile phone or tablet.
The WordPress community is vast & supportive
One great benefit of using WordPress for eCommerce is the large and supportive community of users and developers. There are plenty of intuitive resources available that can help you get started and make your eCommerce website as successful as possible.
Here are a few sources to tap into when you need help or support with your WordPress store:
- WordPress user forums and support groups. There are many online communities and platforms, such as WordPress.org, where you can ask questions and get assistance from other users.
- Documentation and tutorials. The WordPress documentation and tutorial resources are extensive, so you can easily find the information you need to set up and manage your store.
- Professional support services. If you need additional help with your WordPress store, many professional support services are available from third-party developers and agencies that can offer additional expertise and guidance. A case in point is WP Buffs, a service that provides dedicated support to help you manage and update your store.
WordPress doesn’t require coding knowledge
Another great benefit of using WordPress for eCommerce is that it doesn’t require coding knowledge or experience. That makes it an excellent choice for beginner eCommerce store owners just starting.
Tip: If you have some coding knowledge, you can customize your store further by working directly with the WordPress codebase. However, this is an optional step, and you can still succeed with a basic WordPress eCommerce store.
The best blogging platform in the world
WordPress is historically known as the best platform to gain organic traffic using blogs. There is no wonder that around 43% of the web is built with WordPress.
WordPress is free (wordpress.org)
WordPress is free to use. But don’t get confused with WordPress.com. It’s WordPress.org that you need.
All you need to pay for is your domain name and a server to host the WordPress CSM. The best servers I’ve experienced are WPX Hosting. Their support is instant and incredibly helpful.
Plus, they have an inbuilt setup for WordPress.org where by the click of a button, it is all installed for you.
If you use WooCommerce, the costs can stack up as they charge you for each additional feature. But with Shopify, you get nearly everything in your subscription plan, depending on which one you use.
The cons of using WordPress for eCommerce
While there are certainly some benefits to using WordPress for eCommerce, there can also be some challenges. Here are a few of the main drawbacks:
Lack of native built-in features
While there are many plugins and third-party tools to add features and functionality to your WordPress store, these tools can sometimes be more complex or challenging to use than native built-in eCommerce solutions. For instance, you may need to learn how to use the tools or manage any resulting conflicts that arise.
Besides, as Boss Magazine points out, there’s some concern about the security and reliability of plugins or third-party tools, especially if they’re only sometimes maintained or updated by the original developers.
Limited analytics and reporting tools
WordPress does offer some built-in analytics and reporting tools, but they’re less comprehensive and robust than those offered by dedicated eCommerce platforms. That can make it more challenging to assess your store’s performance and identify areas for improvement or optimization.
That said, here are a few tools you can use to gain more insights into your WordPress store’s performance:
- Google Analytics. This free and widely-used web analytics tool lets you monitor and measure how visitors engage with your store.
- WordPress plugins. Many WordPress plugins, such as Jetpack, can provide additional analytics and reporting features for your store.
- In-house tools. Also, consider developing custom in-house tools or dashboards to track your store’s performance over time. That can help you spot patterns and trends in your sales data and identify areas for improvement.
Pros of using Shopify for eCommerce with WordPress
Shopify is incredible and the leading eCommerce platform in the world. If you want to make your WordPress site eCom-ready, you can with Shopify.
Here are some of the leading features Shopify offers:
- The best eCommerce security
- Fastest content delivery networks around the world
- An extensive list of compatible payment gateways
- Largest app store with over 10,000 apps
- Many largest brands in the world use Shopify for a reason
- Anyone can build a shop – no coding experience is required. WordPress requires some technical knowledge of domains, DNS, security, etc.
Learn more about why Shopify is best for eCommerce. The good thing is you can use Shopify with WordPress if you want the best of both worlds!
Overall, WordPress is an excellent choice for eCommerce due to the following features:
- The platform is easy to use and doesn’t require any coding knowledge.
- It offers many plugins and tools that can easily integrate with your store.
- It provides some basic reporting and analytics features to help you assess your store’s performance.
However, there are potential challenges when using WordPress for eCommerce, such as the lack of native built-in features and limited reporting tools. Many tools can help you overcome these challenges and optimize your store’s performance.
Consider using Shopify for eCommerce, whether you use it with your WordPress site or create a Shopify store. Even though Shopify may seem expensive compared, in the end, you get the best features and security, which saves you in the long run. There is a reason why Shopify is the new favorite.