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eCommerce / 20 Apr 2017
Woocommerce – More than just a wordpress plugin

Woocommerce has been around for a while already ( 2011 ) and it’s developed into a really fully fledged, extensible and customisable e-commerce platform. I’ve been using it since 2012, when I was building my first Online Shop. Right now 41% of all online shops run on Woocommerce. And it dominates the e-commerce plugin market for WordPress ( 91% market share ).

Custom posts / Taxonomies

The cool thing about Woocommerce is that it’s built into the core of WordPress by using the custom posts and taxonomies for basically everything that’s needed ( Orders, Products, Shipments etc. ). This makes Woocommerce just as extensive as WordPress itself! Besides that, the standard interface that comes with the standard theme by Woothemes ( Storefront ) is already quite sophisticated.

Payment Gateways

Then there are also the payment gateways, it standardly includes Stripe and Paypal, which works without any integration required ( only api-keys and usernames ). Very impressive. And there is a lot more, there are 113 supported gateway extensions in the Woocommerce extension library.

Other plugins for the Woocommerce plugin

Over the years plugin development for Woocommerce has intensified and the official Woocommerce extensions store is featuring 328 plugins. In total, it is estimated that there are well over 2500 plugins for Woocommerce. Just great..

Cautions

With the growing amount of plugins in the market, online shop owners that don’t have dedicated developers, usually end up with a bunch of plugins for every small functionality. Often, this leads to poor performance, dependency issues, maintenance nightmares and vulnerabilities. Online shop owners believe that all plugins work magically, but some plugins have poorly written code and there is little control over this.

Future

Since Automattic, also the makers of WordPress, bought Woocommerce last year, there will be more possibilities to automate the setup of a Woocommerce store. I imagine, that more plugins will be built into the core of Woocommerce, making it more stable and reliable and reducing the barriers for one-click installations.

Also, for more custom shop solutions, Woocommerce continues to be a good choice, there are plenty of developers and support for the REST API of Woocommerce is increasing. This allows frontend developers working with javascript frameworks like ReactJS or Angular to customise the shop’s look and UX.

This also happened with WordPress, Automattic introduced Calypso and is API driven, enabling easier customisation and is also more in line with the recent javascript developments.

Infographic

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