WooCommerce WordPress plugins can enhance and optimize your e-commerce shop or online store. WooCommerce has a range of plugins that are simple to use and offer a lot of attractive features for merchants and sellers.
There are so many plugins for WooCommerce that choosing the right ones can get confusing. Sometimes, store owners are tempted to choose too many or too few when faced with a slew of options. Figure out which WooCommerce plugins you actually need and can benefit from with our WooCommerce plugins guide.
- 1 Best WooCommerce WordPress Plugins
- 2 What is WooCommerce and How Does it Work for e-Commerce?
- 3 What are Plugins for WooCommerce?
- 4 How Do WooCommerce Plugins Work?
- 5 Why Get WooCommerce Plugins?
- 6 WooCommerce Authorize.net Plugin
- 7 WooCommerce Amazon Affiliate Plugin
- 8 WooCommerce Membership Plugin
- 9 WooCommerce Subscriptions Plugin
- 10 WooCommerce Coupon Plugin
- 11 WooCommerce Tax Plugin
- 12 WooCommerce Search Plugin
- 13 The Final Word
Best WooCommerce WordPress Plugins
If you already know how to use WooCommerce and WordPress, and understand how plugins work, feel free to skip ahead. If not, you may benefit from the brief overviews we include as part of our larger review. Our plugin picks appear later in the guide.
What is WooCommerce and How Does it Work for e-Commerce?
WooCommerce is an e-commerce platform that works directly with WordPress to produce a storefront that online businesses can use to sell their products and services. Thousands of online businesses already use WooCommerce for their daily operations and sales. Those who have experience with WordPress already will likely find WooCommerce a very easy way to begin their e-commerce business.
WooCommerce is different from many other e-commerce platforms, including Volusion, Etsy, Shopify, Magento and BigCommerce because of the way it integrates with WordPress. After installing WooCommerce, you can apply one of their themes directly to WordPress to start your store. A few themes are free, while others come at a small additional cost.
Some e-commerce shop owners find that WooCommerce and a theme is enough to get them started. Those who want more than the basic features that go along with these themes, however, may want to look at plugins to add more features and functionality to their stores.
What are Plugins for WooCommerce?
For WooCommerce or any other program, plugins are simply a means of adding specific features. They are designed to modify existing programs in order to improve or enhance them.
Say, for example, you run the type of e-commerce business that could really benefit from having memberships and subscriptions. That kind of specialized functionality doesn’t come packaged into the basic WooCommerce program. You can, however, get a WooCommerce plugin that adds memberships and subscription services to your store.
When it comes to WooCommerce, some plugins come from WooCommerce, but others originate from third parties such as Amazon. That also means fluctuations in functionality, price and reliability. It’s important to parse through the avalanche of plugins out there to get only the ones you need and that come from providers you trust.
How Do WooCommerce Plugins Work?
WooCommerce refers to plugins as “extensions” and offers them in their Extensions Store. Some of them are free to add on to your website while others cost extra. As noted above, the cost will vary depending on who is providing the plugin. For example, while PayPal offers a free extension for WooCommerce, Amazon charges for its Fulfillment by Amazon service.
Using plugins you select for WooCommerce is simple:
- Navigate to the dashboard of your WordPress site
- Select Plugins from the leftside menu bar
- Select “Add New” from under Plugins
- Choose the plugin file you downloaded (it should be a .zip file)
- Click “Install Now”
The plugin should install and work on your website!
Why Get WooCommerce Plugins?
All of this might be starting to sound like a needless hassle. If WooCommerce has a basic theme you can use without plugins and add-ons, why go to the trouble of researching them, choosing some and installing them?
There are many benefits for plugins. They allow you to gain functionalities you simply don’t have without them. Try to picture things from your customers’ perspectives. PayPal might not be a big deal to you personally, but for some customers it is absolutely essential, perhaps even the only means they have for paying for goods online. Don’t miss out on customers just to save yourself the “hassle” of learning a little about plugins.
Aside from adding functionality and features your customers enjoy, they also make your e-commerce store look and feel more professional. When customers see PayPal or Amazon payment options on your site, they know they are dealing with a seller than can trust and not a sketchy internet scam.
WooCommerce Authorize.net Plugin
Authorize.net is a payment gateway plugin you can install to add options to your site for paying with most major credit cards. This includes Visa, MasterCard, Discover and other credit card options. Plus, the plugin is free. You can download it right from WordPress’ website at no cost.
After installing this plugin for WooCommerce, you simply activate it and you’ll have authorize.net payment options right on your store. Features of this plugin include:
- No SSL required
- No PCI required
- Set up your own successful payment and failed payment messages
- Hassle free installation and configuration
- Offers your customers a safe and secure way for them to use their preferred credit or debit card in your store
- Plugin hosted on secure Authoize.net servers so you don’t have to worry, either
- An Authorize-only mode option
WooCommerce Amazon Affiliate Plugin
Amazon affiliates earn more when others make purchases on Amazon. By placing a link on your own site, you can earn money from Amazon. For everyone who clicks from your site to Amazon and makes a purchase, you will receive a percentage. But only if you have an Amazon affiliate plugin for your WooCommerce WordPress website.
There are many Amazon affiliate plugins to choose from. Here are a few of the most popular ones and what they have to offer. We place them as our top three choices for WooCommerce Amazon affiliate plugins:
- WooZone: It doesn’t matter if you have an established store already or not when you use WooZone. It works with both existing WooCommerce stores and brand new ones. WooZone pulls products directly from Amazon and publishes them on your website with your affiliate links. All you need to do is set up a keyword and add it to the queue and WooZone will do the rest. There are other features you can customize in WooZone, including how often products are imported and how many pages of products to import. WooZone currently costs $65.
- Amazon eStore Affiliates Plugin: If all you plan to do with your e-commerce store is make money by being an Amazon affiliate, this is the right plugin for you. This plugin helps you create a store featuring Amazon’s products without you needing to code or design much at all. For $49 you can have a high-powered Amazon affiliate store online.
- EasyAzon: The goal of this plugin is ease and it delivers. EasyAzon will save you time and help you earn more money as an Amazon affiliate by linking automatically to relevant Amazon products with an affiliate link. There’s no need for you to curate, manually add links or log in to the Amazon Associates website even. The plugin costs $67.
WooCommerce Membership Plugin
Memberships are useful for your e-commerce website when you need a way to restrict some of your content so only certain people have access to it and can view it. Customers will pay for a membership in order to see that content. When creating a membership program, keep in mind how long a membership will last for, whether and how it will recur, and what kind of content will be restricted on your website.
WooCommerce has there own membership plugin that breaks down as follows:
Depending on the number of sites you’re running, the price scales. If you run many, many websites that require membership services you can save a significant amount of money on the per-site cost of WooCommerce’s membership plugin.
There are also outside vendors who have created WooCommerce membership plugins for you to use:
- WooCommerce Membership: This extension allows you to create an unlimited number of online membership tiers. You can add or remove members manually. Easily convert WooCommerce products to membership products and set up optional expiration times. The memberships will expire automatically when membership orders are canceled or refunded. The plugin costs $39 and allows you to set up access restrictions to posts and pages based on memberships.
- YITH WooCommerce Membership: YITH is $90 for a single-site membership program. The plugin allows you to manage membership to everything from schedules to products to publishing resources right in your WooCommerce website. The plugin will work with pages, posts, files, products, videos and other WooCommerce items. YITH has a tiered payment structure: It costs $90 for a single site license, $199 for up to 6 sites and $249 for up to 30 sites. This is a slight bump up over WooCommerce’s own membership plugin.
WooCommerce Subscriptions Plugin
Subscriptions are different from memberships. Memberships allows tiers of access to restricted content on your website. Subscriptions are a way to get recurring payments. There may be perks that go along with subscriptions, such as a monthly gift, but subscriptions are also used when a seller simply wants to offer a product on a regular schedule (such as a podcast that comes out once a week or a newsletter that is sent around once a month).
WooCommerce has its own subscriptions plugin. Customers can subscribe to physical or virtual products and services. With WooCommerce’s subscriptions plugin, you can add sign-up fees, free trials and expiration periods. This is a great way for many e-commerce businesses to gain some extra residual revenue every month.
WooCommerce’s subscriptions plugin is a lot like its membership plugin in that there are payment tiers to choose from. These are:
As with the membership plugin, there are savings to be had if you operate many sites. Also similar to the membership plugin from WooCommerce, there are competing plugins out there for subscriptions services that do not come directly from WooCommerce.
- YITH WooCommerce Subscription: YITH makes a subscription services plugin for WooCommerce along with its membership plugin. The YITH WooCommerce Subscription plugin is pretty similar, so if you like the membership plugin you’ll likely like their subscriptions plugin as well. You can use it to create subscriptions for reviews, videos, learning courses, podcasts, hosting and whatever else you want to offer to subscribers in installments over time. Make unlimited subscription plans and set the type of renewal (daily or monthly) for each WooCommerce product you have to offer.
- Subscription for WooCommerce: This plugin works with WooCommerce to create a subscription service. You can set the subscription length and create a plan based on either days or weeks. Set the amount of days before sending email reminders that someone’s subscription is about to end. Overall, this is a handy and straightforward subscription service for WooCommerce that you can download for free.
- Subsciptio: Get semi- or fully-automatic subscription billing with Subsciptio for WooCommerce. Subscriptio is super easy to use, with the ability to turn various products into subscriptions and set a billing cycle length and maximum subscription length. It costs $49 and also has an option to set up free trials.
WooCommerce Coupon Plugin
Coupon creators for WooCommerce allow you to offer coupons to your customers for special deals and promotions. There are many coupon creators to choose from, but here are a few we particularly like:
- Coupon Creator: This plugin creates a custom post type in WooCommerce called coupon. You can use this new custom post type to create coupons right in WordPress. You can also choose to upload an image of a coupon. Download it for free.
- Magic WP Coupons – Lite: This might be the lite version, but it is still a powerful tool for e-commerce stores looking to create coupons for their customers. The lite version is a demo, but you will still be able to download and install it for free and start making coupons in WordPress. The plugin also generates shortcodes that you can put on your pages and posts to offer discounts and coupons.
- Social Offers: This is different from the first two plugins in this this. Rather than coupons on pages and posts, Social Offers creates an overlay that displays incentives. You can offer things like music, PDFs and templates, as well as coupons, when using Social Offers. You can test this plugin out with a free trial.
- YITH WooCommerce Gift Cards: YITH also has a plugin for coupons, aside from its offerings for memberships and subscriptions. This is slightly different from the options above in that it focuses on gift cards. Allow customers to buy gift cards to your store using this plugin. Gift cards are a powerful type of product in and of themselves that can help grow your store. You can download it for free.
- YITH WooCommerce Share for Discounts: YITH also has a straightforward coupon/discount plugin as well, though. Your customers can share on Facebook, Twitter and/or Google in order to get discounts on your products. This not only offers enticing discounts to customers, but also encourages them to share your store and products, boosting sales and attracting new customers.
WooCommerce Tax Plugin
Figuring out sales tax is a major concern for e-commerce businesses. Sales tax changes from state to state. Rates can even shift depending on whether you’re online or taking sales in person. Laws and regulations that change from year to year also change sales tax rates across the country. Therefore, a WooCommerce Tax plugin is essential for online businesses in order to keep up with changing sales tax rates around the country.
- TaxJar: TaxJar is a sales tax automation program for WooCommerce. The plugin works in WordPress to make sales tax calculations painless. TaxJar claims that more than 10,000 e-commerce businesses use it each month calculate sales tax. TaxJar promises its plugin is never out of date and can maintain more than 10,000 tax rates that are updated monthly in its database. You can sign up for a free 30-day trial of TaxJar to test it out for yourself.
- Simple Sales Tax: Simple Sales Tax by TaxCloud offers a free download of its plugin. It can calculate sales tax during checkout, generate reports for your own records and assist you with filing your own taxes. TaxCloud’s database of sales tax rate information is similar to TaxJar’s, so you can rely on it to be up to date and dependable.
WooCommerce Search Plugin
Make it easy for users to browse your website with a search plugin. These are useful for those with large inventories and product offerings. But even if you are a smaller store, it’s great to offer a search option to make life easy for your customers. Don’t lose business simply because someone got frustrated by the lack of a search bar. Try one of these plugins instead:
- Advanced Woo Search: This is a powerful search plugin. Your customers can simply start typing and they’re immediately see products making their query. Woo Search boasts a products search, easy to use settings page, search in option, shortcode, product images and more.
- Smart WooCommerce Search: This plugin focuses more on sites with a large amount of inventory. Set different “required” fields and manage settings with this robust and powerful plugin. You can even integrate Smart Search into a default WordPress search widget to use it for non-WooCommerce websites as well.
The Final Word
There are a lot of plugins for WordPress and WooCommerce in this guide. Ultimately, you will have to determine which are most needed for your e-commerce business. Things like sales tax calculators and search functionality are right for just about every e-commerce site out there. But other more specialized plugins may not be right for your particular site.