How to Install and Set up WooCommerce

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WooCommerce is a free e-commerce plugin that helps you sell anything in WordPress. With extensive payment options and settings, WooCommerce now powers almost 30% of all online stores. In this article I will cover installing WooCommerce and go through the onboarding/setup wizard.

WooCommerce Installation

We first need to install WooCommerce via the WordPress admin. So log into your site, select “Plugins” and then “Add New”.

screenshot showing how to add a new plugin from the WordPress admin dashboard

In the Search Plugins field, type in WooCommerce and hit enter.

screenshot showing how to search for WooCommerce in the plugin search box

WooCommerce will be the first result, select the “Install Now” button.

screenshot showing how to install WooCommerce

WordPress will then download, and install WooCommerce for you. Once installed, you have the option to activate the plugin or return to the plugin installer. Select “Activate Plugin” so we can get up and running with WooCommerce.

screenshot showing how to activate WooCommerce in the WordPress plugins menu

WooCommerce Setup

This thing kicks off the WooCommerce onboarding/setup wizard. This is just a few steps that help you set up the appropriate WooCommerce pages, store settings, shipping & taxes, payment gateways, and more. It is completely optional and shouldn’t take any longer than five minutes.

screenshot showing how to get started with the WooCommere onboarding or setup wizard

If you don’t want to use the onboarding wizard select, “Not right now”. You can also skip any of the specific onboarding steps as needed. Otherwise, if this is your first time setting up WooCommerce I would recommend selecting “Let’s go!”.

WooCommerce Page Setup

Your first step is the Page Setup screen. This will create four essential pages WooCommerce needs to operate. Your shop, cart, checkout, and my account pages.

screenshot of WooCommerce page setup screen

These are just like normal pages in WordPress, WooCommerce will just create them and add a shortcode to each that makes them work as needed. Select “Skip this step” if you don’t want pages created, or select “Continue” to have WooCommerce install the needed pages.

WooCommerce Store Locale

Next you will have the Store Locale screen. This asks for where your store is based, which helps set shipping and tax information later on. Selecting the dropdown you can start typing to find your country and or state. With that set you will next see the store currency field. This will be set for you based on your store location, but you can change it if needed here.

screenshot of WooCommere store locale screen

Your last two settings here are for weight and dimensions units, choose how you want to measure the weight and dimensions of your products. These again are set automatically based on your store location, but can be changed if needed. With those four settings covered select “Continue”.

WooCommerce Shipping & Tax

screenshot of WooCommerce shipping and tax screen

We now have shipping & tax setup checkboxes. If you are shipping physical goods be sure to check the “Will you be shipping products?” checkbox.

screenshot of WooCommerce base shipping setup screen

Once you select the checkbox four more fields appear. Two for domestic flat rate shipping and two for international flat rate shipping. You can enter a cost for shipping per order and/or a cost for shipping per item for both domestic and international.

screenshot of WooCommerce base tax setup screen

Below that you can also set up taxes if needed. Select the “Yes, I will be charging sales tax” checkbox and two more settings appear. You can set how you will enter product prices, either inclusive of tax or exclusive of tax.

screenshot of WooCommerce import tax rates screen

You can even import some starter tax rates based on your stores location with the “Yes, please import some starter tax rates” checkbox. Select “Continue” and let’s look at the payments screen.

WooCommerce Payments

screenshot of WooCommerce payments screen

On the Payments screen you can set up a few included gateways. PayPal Standard and offline payment gateways; Cheque payments, Cash on Delivery, and Bank Transfer (BACS). To enable PayPal Standard you just need to enter your PayPal email address. To enable any of the offline gateways just select the checkbox next to the appropriate one. Select “Continue” to head to the last screen.

WooCommerce Ready

screenshot of WooCommerce ready screen

On the Ready screen the last thing WooCommerce bugs you about is letting your store send diagnostic data. This data is completely non-sensitive and helps make WooCommerce better for everyone. You will receive a 20% off coupon for woothemes.com to the site admin’s email address for helping them see how your store uses WooCommerce. Select “Allow” to send that data, otherwise select “No thanks”.

If you don’t want to create a product right off the bat, select the “Return to the WordPress Dashboard” link to see what’s new in your site. You will now see WooCommerce in your WordPress admin menu. This is where you can access your orders, coupons, reports, settings, and system status as well as any Add-ons you might be using.

screenshot of WooCommerce plugins menu

You will also see a menu option for products. This is where you will go to add new or edit existing products, manage product categories, tags, shipping classes and attributes.

screenshot of WooCommerce products menu

This concludes the basic WooCommerce installation and setup. Now you are ready to go through the general settings. If you have any questions feel free to post it in the comments.

Next – Part 2: How to Configure WooCommerce General Settings

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