Over the weekend I was fortunate enough to spend some much needed quality time with my sister and one thing we discussed was starting an online shop. What we concluded, or rather what I pointed out to her was that the hardest part is creating the product and marketing it, the actual process of selling online is the easy part!
Now you might be thinking, yes easy for you because you’re a web designer but honestly it is super easy but before you begin there are a couple of things I do suggest you consider before you setup your online shop…
1. Type of product
First, you’ll want to decide what type of product you’ll be selling. I bet you probably already know this answer but it’s good practice to classify it before you begin in case you need any additional functions or features. Woocommerce allows you to sell real products, digital downloads, content and your time.
2. Product Details
I might be stating the obvious here but without this information,you wouldn’t have a shop. You’ll need cohesive and compelling product photography and informative and enticing product descriptions. Remember to also think about sizing, weight, how often it can be downloaded, expiry dates – basically anything that’s relevant to your products.
3. Method of Payment accepted
You will need a way to accept payment from your customers and the great news is that Woocommerce offers a wide variety of payment gateways. There’s the obvious like Paypal and Stripe and there’s also Payfast, Amazon Pay and World Pay all depending on your location and your needs. One thing to note is that most of these gateways charge either a transaction fee or take a cut of your sales so you’ll want to take that into consideration when pricing your products.
4. Delivery/Shipping Methods
How are you going to get your products to your customers? What company are your going to use for delivery? And how much will it cost? You can weigh each of your products and use automated shipping calculators, or you can set up flat or table rates for shipping based on order total, the number of items, or some other method.
Once your online shop has been setup you’ll need to maintain it which unfortunately isn’t always a very glamorous job. You may want to consider hiring someone to take care of tasks like updating the product info, packing and shipping orders and the customer service admin.
6. Additional Features
With over 300+ free and paid extensions you can really add lots of additional features to your shop. Some basic ones for you to consider are adding your shopper’s email address to your mailing list on checkout, offering currency exchange rates and coupons.
If you’re looking to setup your own Woocommerce website and need step-by-step instructions on how to do so why not check out my ‘Guide to Selling Online with Woocommerce’.