Thirumalesh Prasad C G Thirumalesh Prasad C G, November 8, 2018

WordPress and E-Commerce website

Before now, it was generally believed that WordPress was incapable of hosting or creating an e-commerce site due to situations identified as large traffic and security. After the recent turn of events and the creation of e-Bay (one of the world's most successful e-commerce websites), it was discovered that WordPress is capable of more than we could ever imagine. Today, WordPress has moved from the initial blogging based site it was thought to be to an e-commerce powerhouse. This is not just because of the creation of WordPress e-commerce plugin (WooCommerce) which is powering more than 40% if all online stores but also in the ability to handle significant traffic and improved level of security.

WordPress has been responsible for the building of several online stores for all sorts of markets and type of products and this reason, this article shall be directed towards having a closer look at the possibilities users creating an e-commerce website in WordPress.

WordPress Plugins that support eCommerce websites

The usefulness of WordPress plugins and themes in the creation of e-commerce websites cannot be overemphasised. To gain a better understanding of the subject matter, let's take a look at the most important/popular WordPress plugins that support e-commerce websites.

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1. WooCommerce

This is the most popular of all the WordPress e-commerce plugins. It has been in existence for quite some time now, and it supports a wide range of active installs (up to a million) and covers more than a third of the entire online shop market. It is offered for free. As essential and user-friendly as WooCommerce can be, it is characterised by some inadequacies such as those requiring you to bring about a lot of different elements together to create a full-fledged online shop. The setting up of security measures such as SSL protocols can be overwhelming for most beginners and dealing with FTP servers.

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2. iThemes Exchange

The next most popular methods of building e-commerce sites using WordPress are made possible by iThemes. It is a successful WordPress company whose products are aimed at managing a successful break into an already competitive WordPress e-commerce market and keeps waxing stronger. It is a free version which exists inside the WordPress directory. This means that you can use it to start building your online shop even without having to pay a dime. It presents some payment gateways such as Stripe which other solutions may charge an extra fee for. This exchange allows you to sell your digital products and also stuff you can be able to touch. It is a good option used for building membership sites. It is user-friendly and easy to use. iThemes Exchange may require payments to activate advanced features, and since it is relatively new in the market, it presents a smaller ecosystem which may be linked with some challenges and fewer specific themes.

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3. Easy Digital Downloads (EDD)

This is an eCommerce solution offered by Pippin’s plugins. Just as the name implies, this plugin is aimed at selling digital and not physical products. This comes in handy for selling software, ebooks and other non-tangible wares. It offers you a lot of bang for your cash. It is offered for free although it may require some form of payment for the advanced extensions and features. It is lightweight and fully integrates seamlessly with Wordpress. This plugin also contains multiple payment gateways and a full-fledged shopping cart and has a great ability to use promotional codes to download or purchase multiple products. It is very technical and getting around the plugin can pose as a challenge mostly to new users.

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4. Shopify

This was initially offered as a standalone e-commerce platform which offers the possibility of creating a hosted online shop in exchange for a monthly fee. In 2017, it was made to provide some ways of integrating it into WordPress. It is a beginner and user-friendly. All is needed is for you to install the plugin, follow the instructions and your products are ready. It takes care of all your e-commerce needs from beginning to end including SSL and other complicated things. Using Shopify splits your site into two accounts which may not be easy to handle for first-timers.

5. WP eCommerce

Created in 2006, this is regarded as “the original WordPress e-commerce plugin.” It features about 40, 000+ active installs and also sports respectable user numbers. This plugin contains anything you would expect from an e-commerce plugin such as product management, shipping options, a checkout and shopping cart. The responses obtained from users are not as positive as most of them claim it lacks support and continuity.

Wordpress Web Development: Pros and Cons

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Thirumalesh Prasad C G

Written by Thirumalesh Prasad C G

Thirumalesh Prasad C G (Thiru) is an entrepreneur, Founder, and CEO of Inboundsys, India's No.1 Hubspot partner agency, and an IT services company. Before starting Inboundsys, Thiru has had 12 years of experience working for various multinational IT products and services companies in India and abroad. He has been a significant member and worked as a user interface architect in designing the user interface for many web applications and products. In addition to running Inboundsys, he is also an advisory board member in a couple of other design studios and digital marketing agencies. He is a passionate blogger and a writer who loves writing on digital marketing, inbound marketing, lifestyle, philosophy, positive thinking, and motivation.

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