26% of all online stores use WooCommerce. WooCommerce, even with its pros and cons, is one of the best eCommerce platforms available for free. It is built upon WordPress and thus benefits from a powerful core that offers you unlimited customization and flexibility. Creating an online store on WooCommerce is not only cost-effective but also enables you to add advanced features using the unlimited plugins and extensions in the WooCommerce Marketplace.
Many people believe that because WooCommerce is free, it cannot handle large amounts of data and is not suitable for a large business. But that’s not true at all! WooCommerce is scalable and is constantly upgraded so that your performance is not hindered.
If you are still not convinced about choosing WooCommerce, we have listed out the pros and cons, to help you make a well-informed decision.
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WooCommerce Pros and Cons
1. Overall Cost
WooCommerce is an open-source free eCommerce plugin, meaning it is free to download and use and it also enables you to customize your store according to your preferences. Anyone with a tight budget can create an amazing site with WooCommerce and stand out from their competitors.
Out-of-the-box, WooCommerce provides unlimited features like product management, content management, multiple users, coupons, payment gateways, and much more to help you create a site, thus the only initial cost is of a hosting service which can be as low as $100-120 per year.
WooCommerce does not work on any pricing plan features. Thus, you can add all your desired features to your current plan. WooCommerce has many free but limited plugins available as well to keep your costs at a minimum.
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2. Extensive Community
WordPress is the most popular CMS platform, with a large community of experts available to help you out. Since WooCommerce is built upon WordPress, it benefits from the ownership of Automattic and a good support team to handle all the technical issues. Aside from Automattic, there are multiple blogs and forums available that can help you out.
WooCommerce itself provides detailed documentation on each of its plugins and extensions for an easy no-hassle setup.
Thus, to sum up, there are unlimited forums dedicated to WordPress and WooCommerce with comparisons, how-to guides, listicles, technical support, and much more. This also means that its users benefit from the software continuity and constant upgrades and new features.
3. Flexible and Customizable
One of the major attractive features of using WooCommerce is its flexibility. It is an extremely versatile platform that is suitable for any type of product or business. With WooCommerce, you can sell physical, digital, and downloadable products. You can create sites for selling subscriptions, memberships, recurring goods, bookings, and much more.
Unlike any other eCommerce platform, WooCommerce provides unparalleled customization options. With themes, you can change the header, footer, rearrange widgets, and blocks easily. You can add new features or plugins and customize them accordingly. You can also hire developers for personal customization and add-ons.
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4. Unlimited Plugins
Other eCommerce platforms are expensive and use pricing plans to differentiate the features that will be provided. WooCommerce eradicates this problem by giving its users full reign on how they want to set up their store and which features they want to add. The WooCommerce Marketplace has unlimited plugins and extensions categorized into marketing, payment gateways, subscriptions, bookings, inventory management, product management, and much more.
These plugins are created by WooCommerce itself and also third-party sites. You can find these plugins for free and paid.
Since WooCommerce is built on WordPress, it benefits from unlimited features like plugins, themes, support, etc. It is also SEO-friendly, as it is integrated with the Yoast SEO plugin, which is the best among all and has many advanced features. WooComerce’s code is optimized for SEO and is regularly updated to keep it compatible, secure, and user-friendly.
Now that we have listed out the pros, let’s move on to the cons of WooCommerce.
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One of the major downsides of using an open-source eCommerce platform like WooCommerce is that it has no fixed support team available that you can contact at the time of a query, or technical error. Since you have complete control over your website, you also need to take full responsibility for technical maintenance, upgrades, and operations.
By opting for managed hosting, you can get a team of experts to handle these tasks for you. Otherwise, you can use forums to solve your problems or hire a professional. Both of which will cost you money and effort.
2. Steep Learning Curve
If you don’t have experience with WordPress, then you would have a difficult time getting hang of operating WooCommerce, as it has a similar interface to WordPress. It has a steep learning curve for beginners as they are not familiar with eCommerce jargon and how to set up different features. But it’s not difficult to learn, and if you have the time, WooCommerce is worth it.
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Another problem faced when using WooCommerce is that it is not secure out-of-the-box. Thus, either you can add an SSL certificate if you are self-hosting your site, or use a managed hosting provider to handle all security concerns.
There are also many plugins available that can help you with this, but adding too many plugins and extensions can affect the speed of your website, which results in customers abandoning your site.
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And that’s a wrap on the pros and cons of WooComerce. Despite its few disadvantages, WooCommerce provides features like customization and unlimited plugins, all within your budget. Other eCommerce platforms might be more user-friendly, but they are expensive and limited in their functionality. With WooCommerce, the possibilities are endless and you can easily scale your store. We hope this article helped you make up your mind about using WooCommerce.