WooCommerce Weekly Review #5: Release Critique, Upselling & Purchase Cancellations


We want WooCommerce updates to become a whole lot smoother in future. You can help us get there. Find out more about this and other topics in our Weekly Review.

Release Self-Critique at WooThemes – Seeking Shops for Final Testing

WooCommerce version 2.4 was only recently released. Updates don’t always go as smoothly as planned. In a software, which grows more complex in terms of technology and scope, that fact is hardly surprising.

And yet, the WooThemes update policy was openly criticized time and time again – by end users and by the developers of plugins and add-ons. The same happened again just a few days ago:

In the wake of the latest version release, those in charge at WooThemes have shown themselves to be somewhat self-critical – at least t some extent. The blog post Lessons learned from releasing WooCommerce 2.4 talks about some of the following issues:

  • WooThemes rolled out the update on their own platform ahead of the release – to underline their confidence in its quality, but also as a final live test.
  • Some bugs – for example in connection with variable products – were spotted only after going live. Should this be viewed as a precedent for other WordPress plugins?
  • And yet: even this radical move could not prevent the problems that appeared with regards to backward compatibility, for example with regards to the modified handling of product variations.
  • Not everything went according to plan with third party themes and plugins either. A well-known issue: This is something where plenty of developers would really appreciate a heads-up in terms of what modifications will be required for an upcoming upgrade.
  • “We’d like to get better about ensuring backwards compatibility with third party theme developers who are working to make their themes compatible with WooCommerce” – is what WooThemes wrote in their post. A lot of eyes will be on their keeping that promise in future.

One idea that WooThemes came up with to catch incompatibilities of that type early is doing tests with live data. It is the only way to properly test out the countless possible configurations and plugin constellations. Anyone, who would like to help out by testing real life shop scenarios, should make themselves known via the comment section of the WooThemes blog post.

Displaying a Product ID in the Product List

Product IDs are a central element in the management of your goods in WooCommerce. They also play a role in the use of shortcodes. Remi Corson has written a little plugin, which makes the product ID appear in a column in the WooCommerce product overview:

The product overview in the backend without (left) and with the plugin.

This could save you a whole lot of work, depending on how you organize your online shop. The ZIP file with the plugin for an easy installation in the WordPress backend can be found here at GitHub.

Upselling and Cross-Selling in Real Life

So-called upsells and cross-sells are often underestimated when it comes to gaining additional turnover potential. Exactly what we are talking about, and how you can utilize upselling and cross-selling with WooCommerce is explained here and here.

Chris Lema takes it a step further in his detailed blog post. He describes a number of practical examples, and also lists a number of additional options for implementation using WooCommerce plugins.

Product Recommendations
“You may also like …” an easy to use variation of the recommendation in WooCommerce.

In his article, the WordPress expert looks at some of the following questions:

  • How can both variants – upselling and cross-selling – be strategically implemented?
  • What sets these variants apart from product bundling, and when should their implementation be preferred?
  • Which are the most important matching add-ons for WooCommerce?
  • How can product recommendations be automated?

A worthwhile read, especially for shop operators with an extensive product palette.

Things that Annoy Your Webshop Customers

Purchase cancellations are annoying for any shop operator. And let’s be honest:Let’s be honest: We don’t always know or find out, why an order that was already underway gets cancelled. Yieldify has published a diagram showing the most important reasons:

Purchase cancellations n the online shop:
A section of the diagram (© Yieldify).

According to Yieldify, unforeseen costs, security concerns, slow loading times, or insufficient payment options are among the most common conversion killers. The original diagram lists a umber of other road blocks as well.

Tip: Our most recent Weekly Review offers information about how to better monitor purchase cancellations in WooCommerce using Google Analytics. A and B testing is another valuable tool for optimizing turnover – and not only with regards to purchase cancellations. Have a look at this practical example.

What else went on …

Note: As always, we are looking forward to hearing from you about the topics and tolls you want us to present in our Weekly Review. Simply let us know via the comment function.

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Editor at MarketPress. Passionate blogger, corporate blog expert and book author (e.g. "Blog Boosting"). Co-organizer of WP Camp Berlin.

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