How To Create An Online E-Commerce Store With WordPress – Step By Step Guide
Thinking of making your business presence in the online world? Then creating an online store is the first and the most important step of all. An online store is the best way of selling your products and increasing the reach to a larger customer base efficiently with relatively lesser inputs.
Looking to start such a business? This guide on ‘How to start an e-commerce business’ might be helpful.
A few years earlier, it was really tough to get your things done online, but now in this era of the digital world, it has become an essential part of e-commerce business. There are many website creation services available online but the most popular and the best in quality service provider has been ‘Wordpress’ till now. It has made website creation very simple with many attractive features and add-on services.
So, let us go through all the aspects needed to be covered while creating an online store using WordPress:
Choose a domain hosting site
At the very first step you must have a domain name for your website. You can get them at any web hosting services available like Namecheap, Bluehost, etc. But before choosing anyone of such, you must compare the prices and features offered by them like email services, renewal period, storage, bandwidth, shared or dedicated server, etc. After comparing, you can go for the one best suiting your needs.
Secure your website now:
You have a website so it must be made secure, especially when you have plans to use it as an eCommerce platform. So, don’t forget to add an SSL certificate to your site. It helps to create a secure link between customer and server, keeping all the information safe.
Install WordPress now time to use WordPress and use it as a self-hosted service in your hosting account with the domain name. WordPress has grown as the best content management system in the past years with most of the online world using it. The best thing about it is that it is affordable and easier to understand.
Having WordPress is like your job already half done for your online store. It offers many options for you to design a website and alluring features to choose from.
1) Design your website WordPress offers many free themes for your website. Choose the best looking and easy interface for customers to interact with. The right theme goes a long way to influence your customer’s reaction on your product listings and website. So, choose them after knowing the effects of color on human thinking and decisions.
2) Install PluginsNow you are done with the look of your store but wait! You will need to install plugins for design, looks, graphics and for every other thing you will ever need to create a website. Plugins are separate software which is created to help you to complete your requirement.
3) Include the basic components to make your website look like an e-commerce website and different from general websites, there are three major parts to include:
• Product pages
• Shopping cart
• Checkout process
For every of these components, there are different plugins available. But the best of all is WooCommerce. You can find them on wordpress.org to install.
It is the best in the list of all eCommerce plugins available in the market. Its functionality, ease of use, user-friendly looks and features, and versatile options makes it the leader of the ecommerce plugin available. And therefore it is a solid choice for a long term plugin for an eCommerce website.
Though there are several other plugins for the same task, but the compatibility of WooCommerce has got the success as 60% of total eCommerce websites uses this plugin.
Some of the other good rated plugins are a Shopkeeper, Total, Chic and Store Front. These all plugins have beautiful themes built in and different categories of choices available to select from. You can try any one of them.
Setting Up WooCommerce
Once you have installed WooCommerce, you need to activate it from the plugin category in Dashboard. Once you have installed WooCommerce, you need to activate it from the plugin category in Dashboard. Now, there are certain features requiring set up for better and desirable performance. You need to click on Let’s Go!.
1) Page Setup
This opens the Quick Setup of WooCommerce Plugin. Here you will be offered some of the key pages required for an online store like Shop page, Cart page, checkout page and My Account Page. This is the first step done setting the WooCommerce your own way.
2) Store Locale Setup
Next, you will be asked about physical presence of your store and the currencies you use for business purpose. This will inform customers about prices you are charging and the location and accessibility of your store.
3) Shipping and Tax
Clicking on continue will take you to another set up box about Basic Shipping and Sales Tax. Here, you need to fill about the shipping charges in detail if you are selling physical goods and products. You have to separately mention charges for international shipping and local shipping here. You can skip this part if you are selling digital goods only. Additionally, you have to fill the details about the sales tax applicable for all the products. You need to keep in mind about the tax applied by the government while filling it.
- Payments Setup
Going to the next step will take you to most important part of all i.e. Payment options. The easiest way for this part is to accept payments through PayPal as it is internationally accepted and quite popular for such purposes. Though, if you want to produce more options for your customer then, WooCommerce offers other ways like pay through check or bank transfer or Cash on delivery. Moreover, you can always go a step ahead by selecting premium options for customer transactions through other payment gateways.
- Additional WooCommerce Settings
There are some small but effective things to change from default settings.
One of them is to change your location address as Geolocate would delay the time to show your site address. In addition to this, you can opt for free shipping wherever you wish to offer some discount for customers for higher prices.
Another facility you can give is to add some attractive buttons like Coupon or Discount Chance etc. Going to add new and then creating it will lead to this option available in your site. Another facility you can give is to add some attractive buttons like Coupon or Discount Chance etc. Going to add new and then creating it will lead to this option available in your site.
6) Setting the Product
Since, we are done with the basic settings it’s time to set up our product and how it will look for the customers with what detail shown to them. You can manage all these things under the category Add Product from the dashboard menu. Here you need to assign your product a name, category and add tags to it.
Moreover, you can add images of product their and provide some information about it in the review tab. There you have to options, one to add a short description and other to add a long product description.
To categorize these products you need to list them under a certain category name. So, to add categories, go to Products and then “Add Categories”. Here you can put some more about category by defining it and adding an image relevant to it. To categorize these products you need to list them under a certain category name. So, to add categories, go to Products and then “Add Categories”. Here you can put some more about category by defining it and adding an image relevant to it. A similar process is about creating new tags for the products. You have to give some common tag names for the products that are frequently used so that these items will be easily searchable. But take care and don’t create the tag and category of the same name. It results in bad SEO ranking for your website. There are a few very important aspects in this Product category as far as the business point of view is concerned. • External/Affiliate Product :
A very important part of online e-commerce is the marketplace model when your store has products from different sellers and you act as a platform for them to sell their products. WooCommerce has options for external products where they give links to such products and information about the seller is provided.
• Variable Product:
This helps customers to choose through the variety of styles of products of same size or different size of the same style. You can add different tags to make things clearer for the customer. This can be done more easily by adding the attributes to every product. It will help customer to easily differentiate between similar styles, but different products.
Some other options under Product setting is Inventory. Use this tab when you are having stocks of products before an order is made. But if you are preparing the product when an order is made or your products are digital, then it won’t be of much use for you.Some other options under Product setting is Inventory. Use this tab when you are having stocks of products before an order is made. But if you are preparing the product when an order is made or your products are digital, then it won’t be of much use for you.Another advanced setting is helpful when you want to describe the weight and dimensions of your product. You will find this setting under shipping details. If you want to enable product review and purchase note on time of order, then go to advanced setting option. You also need to focus on managing your URLs, then these points will help you make things look better:
• You can customize your URL of the site by changing under display setting.
• But remember, it becomes difficult to change it once done. So, don’t change it frequently.
• Under product permalinks option you can alter them so that links to a blog are different from product links.
• WooCommerce needs a page for product archive where all of your categories are listed. You can change the name of this page as desired. This isn’t important for your customers as they are not going to view it.
Keep an eye on store stats:
Having your website isn’t all done for a successful business. It needs to be modified and improved at regular intervals with new looks and interface. For this, you must know which theme, plugin or setting makes your website more popular. Thankfully, WordPress has plugins for this also.
You should install an additional plugin to track the user traffic and performance of your website like Google Analytics, MonsterInsights, Yoast SEO, WooCommerce Google Analytics Integration etc. The most used is Google Analytics which helps you to track the viewers of your website and suggests some steps to take so as to produce more fruitful results.
Promoting your store in the online world:
Now you have got your store set up so it’s time to reach to the right audience for your product. Here is when you can harness the power of the social media platforms which is always easy to use for your business. Now you have got your store set up so it’s time to reach to the right audience for your product. Here is when you can harness the power of the social media platforms which is always easy to use for your business. Use social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn etc. efficiently. Posting photos and blogs about your products will tell people about your store and create a brand awareness among them. But make sure that you are regular and updated in your social media accounts with attractive images and exciting posts to drive an audience to your site and hence drive sales.
Running some promotional offers in these accounts is the easiest and the most popular way to drive the audience to your store. Not only in these accounts but you can run campaigns and promotional ads with help of some plugins available like Rafflecopter which have “giveaway” option.
Most of the online services have newsletters delivered to the customers when they provide their email ID. This helps you connected with customers for a longer time and they keep visiting your store more frequently. Running a newsletter is easily possible with help of plugins like MailChimp.
You should keep increasing your network and continue reaching to a new audience via social media platforms and physical reach through promotions.
These steps must help you not only to create your online store beautiful and reachable to the audience but also effective towards driving the sales and growing the business.In the end, I would like to ensure some very important points:1. Test all links after setup as it is important that your website runs smoothly.2. You must promote your site and products to get attention and traffic.3. Make it easy for customers to leave a review as people believe in reviews as much as in recommendations.