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10 Things You May Not Know WooCommerce Can Do

By Jacco Blankenspoor

Just like WordPress itself is capable of transforming into many forms, so is WooCommerce.

WooCommerce is a great plugin for running a web store on WordPress, however, it is not just a web store, it is quite a versatile plugin that can be used for a variety of other purposes.

The reason WooCommerce can do so many things is that it has an excellent built-in payment engine, which other plugins can tap into. So even if you’re not actually selling products, you can still use this engine and its many different payment methods.

Transforming your WooCommerce website into something different is done by using additional plugins or extensions as they are often called.

In this article, I’ll cover 10 different WooCommerce extensions to give you some ideas of what you can do with WooCommerce, with one recommended plugin for each purpose. Feel free to Google around and see if there’s an alternative plugin that may better suit your specific needs.

Bookings

Bookings

Demo: The WC Resort & Spa
Plugin: WooCommerce Bookings

Whether you are selling hotel rooms like in the demo, or tickets to your very own stand-up comedy show, using a bookings plugin takes care of it. It uses a date and time calendar to allow visitors to select the time they want to place a booking.

The plugin is quite ingenious by giving you enough ways to control your calendar, preventing over bookings or no shows. You can even have a customer check availability with you first. The plugin also takes care of the invoicing, using the WooCommerce payment option.

Subscriptions

Subscriptions

Demo: Sellxed WooCommerce Subscription Demo
Plugin: WooCommerce Subscriptions

Subscriptions are used for allowing recurring payments. This plugin is simple yet powerful to sell subscriptions for newspapers, online access, products etc. It even synchronizes with many popular payments gateways. So when a customer cancels his subscription with the provider itself, the subscription gets cancelled in your store as well.

It doesn’t matter if you are selling physical or online products with monthly or yearly subscriptions. As long as it is recurring, this plugin will fit the bill.

Memberships

Memberships

Plugin: Groups for WooCommerce

WordPress already has an excellent Groups plugin which can be used to define membership levels. Combine that with the Groups for WooCommerce plugin and you can begin selling paid memberships. Add the aforementioned Subscriptions plugin and you can even sell recurring memberships.

Paid memberships are very popular with mastermind or study groups. This way a new member needs to pay for a membership, after which they get access to the premium content the author is providing. Coupled with subscriptions, the author is assured of a recurring income from their group.

Facebook Store

Facebook

Demo: Fulgur Esoterica
Plugin: Facebook Tab

WooCommerce can be used as a tab on your Facebook page, so you can sell your products to your Facebook fans without them leaving Facebook. It works like an iFrame, so your store will look the same on and off Facebook.

The plugin uses your regular store to work, but you can set it up so that even checkout is done within the Facebook tab. Your fans don’t even have to know it’s not Facebook they’re buying on.

The plugin makes sure it follows Facebook requirements, including the limited amount of space your have in your tab.

Auctions

Auctions

Demo: wpgenie’s WooCommerce Simple Auctions & Plugins Demo
Plugin: WooCommerce Simple Auctions

This is one of my personal favorites when it comes to originality. By adding a few extra functions to WooCommerce you are suddenly capable of becoming ‘the new eBay’. This plugin allows you to run one or more auctions for your products, including bid history and countdown timer.

After a winning bid is decided, the bidder can pay for their article right away, of course all managed by WooCommerce. There’s even a ‘My Auctions’ section so bidders can keep track.

All sounds pretty obvious for an auction site, but don’t forget it is still WooCommerce we’re talking about. Pretty impressive if you ask me.

Drop-Shipping

Drop Shipping

Screenshots: WooCommerce Dropshippers
Plugin: WooCommerce Dropshippers

At first this plugin looks like a very simple way of notifying drop-shipping companies you work with of new orders. This way you can sell their products as your own in your web store, and when it comes to an order, an email gets sent to the supplying company.

But this plugin takes the process a bit further, by also accommodating for status updates. It does depend on the willingness of the supplier to cooperate, but if they do, you will only need to spend limited time on managing orders. The plugin even keeps track of the amount of money you owe the supplier.

Amazon Store

Amazon

Demo: War Movies Guru
Plugin: WooCommerce Amazon Affiliates

I mentioned this one before but it is such a great plugin it’s worth mentioning again. It uses Amazon’s API to fully integrate its products into your web store, in such a way visitors won’t even know it’s Amazon.

You can even use the reviews placed on Amazon itself and it’s ‘Frequently Bought Together’ recommendations. Only when a customer decides to checkout they are taken to the checkout page on Amazon.

I use this plugin myself for my war movies store. Because it’s a WordPress plugin you still can use the native functionality. This way you can run a separate blog on your site, like I did for making lists of must see movies. This plugin is the perfect choice if you are interested in experiencing how easy it is to run a web store without your own inventory.

Affiliate Store

Affiliate

Demo: WooCommerce Demo Product
Plugin: WooCommerce (built-in)

This specific feature is one of the reasons why WooCommerce is so popular, since it is another (free) way of selling products without keeping an inventory.

Granted, you aren’t actually selling anything since you are referring customers to a different company to make the sale. However, you can give you visitors a shopping experience, use cross-sells and/or up-sells and easily combine affiliate products with your own if you’re up to it.

It is a perfect way of testing the waters, you can even combine it with the Amazon store mentioned above. It is built-in, so you don’t need additional plugins.

As you can see from my example in the demo and screenshot, it’s very simple to set up.

Quotes

Quotes

Demo: WooCommerce Request a Quote Demo
Plugin: WooCommerce Request a Quote

There are cases when you don’t want to sell a product right away, but would like to have a customer ask you for a quote first. For example, when a customer wants to order in bulk. Instead of using email or phone to negotiate the sale you can use this plugin, which adds an extra option to the WooCommerce product listing page.

You still need to follow up outside of your web store, but it sure saves you the hassle of discussing a large order with different products by phone. You only need to confirm the price and close the deal.

Paid Job Listings

Paid Job Listings

Demo: WP Job Manager Demo
Plugin: WC Paid Listings

This plugin requires the free WP Job Manager plugin to work and has a paid extension to it. It allows you to sell job listings for recruiters looking for candidates. Unfortunately, the demo hasn’t included this actual extension.

It looks much like this, which is my own job site and this specific functionality came at a far higher price than the WC Paid Listings plugin. So if you want to run your own job board with only minimal costs this is a great way of doing it while still using all the power of WooCommerce.

Conclusion

As you can see WooCommerce is capable of doing way more than just selling products.

Its open architecture allows for many variations in functionality, which all of these plugins make excellent use of.

If you have got the skills, you can even build something yourself as it comes with extensive documentation.

Please let me know in the comments what you think of using WooCommerce this way, or even add new suggestions to this list.

  • rkukuh

    For someone who just fall in love with woocommerce like me, this list is a must.
    Bookmarked.

    • http://www.buildyourownwebstore.com/ Jacco Blankenspoor

      Thanks!

  • alby

    I need to
    add orders for customers to pay me monthly
    payments . Now, I pre-fill order details for my customers. Then I Keep
    the order status as ‘Pending’, and the customer
    see this order and a ‘Pay’ button for this order in the automatic email that
    is sended by woocommerce. But I need to
    send a reminder with the invoice with a payment link, to a significant number of customers that will
    not answer , so I have to re-send them
    the Order. I would like to be able to send again the orders to all the ones
    with pending status with one click . Instead of having to do it one by one on
    each payment order. Do you know a plugins that can do something like this?

  • Susan linde

    Great post. Full of helpful info.

  • rtpHarry

    @aboutblankenspoor:disqus I think the “this” link is wrong as it points at wpjobmanager.com not your own job site?

    • http://www.buildyourownwebstore.com/ Jacco Blankenspoor

      Wow, that’s sharp :-) I will see if we can edit that, thanks!

  • Gabriel Furchert

    Hey there, the system you are using for your own jobboard, does it come with any tool for sending the customers invoices? I like the way how easy it is to post a job on your system, way better then with Woocommerce.

    • http://www.buildyourownwebstore.com/ Jacco Blankenspoor

      Hi! I can’t check for you anymore, since I sold the site. But advertisers can pay directly before posting the job (in fact, they can even craft the listing and pay afterward). Not sure how it goes for sending invoices other than confirmation of payments, so I think it’s best to check with the developers on that one. It’s a great system indeed, one of the main reasons I decide to implement it was because of the easy job posting.

  • ABhimanyu Singh

    hello! i have my own product like ticket booking system ……..and i wanna to checkout with woocommerce but without using woocommerce products mean i just wanna to use woocommerce checkout page ..so is that possible???

  • http://www.KaaheleHawaii.com/ Leilehua

    Can I use woocommerce on a non-WrodPress website?

    • http://www.airportcareer.co.uk/ Jacco – AirportCareer.co.uk

      Hi, WooCommerce needs WordPress to run.

  • http://mcmbooks.com Alfredo Cardenas

    I want to set up a bookstore in which I want to sell my books, books from friends and books from Amazon as an affiliate. Can I do this with woocommerce?

    • http://www.buildyourownwebstore.com/ Jacco Blankenspoor

      Hi, this is possible if you use the plugin mentioned under “Amazon Store”. It is now called WooZone, but still works the same.

      • http://mcmbooks.com Alfredo Cardenas

        Thanks Jacco. I’m new to this stuff. I’ll try to figure out the plugin but may nag you for more help if I get stuck. Thanks again.

  • Brian Tierney

    HI Jacco, Is there a limitation on the amount of products that I would be able to sell using Woocommerce ? I have a wordpress using shared hosting on GoDaddy.. Thank you

    • hometipster

      I run an affiliate store and I’m on Dreamhost VPS – the basic $15 a month. I’ve listed over 8,000 products but found that once you get over 6k it really slows down the server. After a lot of testing I’ve found that a max of 5k is ok.

  • Majyambere Anatole

    Thank you very much Jacco, I am new in worldpress. I have been looking for a feature maybe you can guide.

    I want my products to be sold in different ways. Some can be added to cat but for others I don’t want the add to cat button appear. I want buyers to contact the seller. Example of products for you to understand are: a plot of land and a camera.

    TX

  • Alberto Ramirez

    Hello Jacco,

    really good post, thanks a lot, I just have a question, I got very motivated to get request quote plugin to replace my site’s shopping option at least as a first stage, my challenge is that I went to the link you placed in the post Demo: WooCommerce Request a Quote Demo and the plugin behaves nicely updating the quantity of products, how ever the raw plugin doesn’t look to have that option, and they are not to fast responding.
    Is that test page a custom form, or an overwrite?

    • hipaahq

      Hi Alberto,

      I think you’re best off contacting the developer of the plugin. Unfortunately I am not running the demo page myself, so I can’t help you on this matter.

  • http://smallgroupleadership.com/ Michael C. Mack

    How do I set a price in WooCommerce for an Amazon Affiliate product? When the customer goes to Amazon, they’ll simply pay whatever price Amazon has on the product, right? Or do I just leave the price option blank? Thanks.

  • http://wantedhero.com/ Jaime D. Buckley

    Jacco,

    I bookmarked this almost 6 months ago and only after getting my new site 80% done did I find it again…and I’m SO glad I did! I’m working on the rebuilding of my Woocommerce store using Eleganttheme’s DIVI theme.

    Coupled with some of your suggestions here, the store is already YEARS beyond what it’s been for the past decade.

    Thanks so much for sharing these incredible insights–it’s made my job of entertaining teens a LOT easier now =)

    • hipaahq

      Hi Jaime, thank you for your kind words, glad to be of help!

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