By GILBERTO ACUNA
In 2013 I started with my first e-commerce store, when I watched a video on YouTube where they explained in great detail, step by step, how to build your own online store.
In my case, and considering that we have an ice cream cake business in our family, I decided to build the website and also offer catering services for offices, weddings, schools, private parties, etc. And when it comes to e-commerce, I added ice cream cake and ice cream cupcake products.
Without any doubt, it has been one of the best decisions I have made in my life, since this online store was just the starting of many other e-commerce stores, besides that especially that first online store has turned out to be very successful in every way.
So now it’s my turn to give back all the knowledge that I learned from someone else, and try to be as explanatory as possible so that you too are successful in your e-commerce projects.
It is important to mention that in the US any e-commerce developer can easily charge between $5,000 and $6,000 for an online store similar to the one that I will show you to do.
If you have not yet taken the time to request quotes, I invite you to do so to see the money that you will save if you decide to build your own e-commerce store.
Below I will list the 10 Steps for building an online store. I hope that you will accompany me throughout this tutorial so that at the end you have a successful e-commerce business.
- Get the Hosting and Register a Domain Name
- Install WordPress
- Install the SSL Security Certificate
- Install the Theme
- Setup the Web Site
- Install Woocommerce
- Create the Menu
- Add Images
- Setup WooCommerce
- Add Products
Step # 1 - Get the Hosting a Register the Domain Name
The first step is to get the hosting, if you do not have one yet. Basically what we need is a computer that is always running on which we can have our website hosted, along with our products and images.
Of course it could be any computer, but really that would be quite difficult because the main requirement is that that computer has to be always running 24 × 7, and that it never crashes.
There are several companies where you can have your hosting (and your domain name as well), but I recommend that the company you select can also offer you both: hosting and also allowing you to register the domain name of your online store.
I have always used an excellent company for many years now, that is called HostGator, in which I have registered multiple domain names and have hosted many internet web pages.
The customer service they offer in my opinion is excellent, and I usually use the chat to request technical support, and in all cases they have responded to my request with great professionalism and a high level of knowledge.
So I recommend you go to the following web address: https://www.hostgator.com/web-hosting, and when you enter this web page you will be able to see that there are several options to get the hosting, and considering that you are just starting, I think the Baby Plan is more than enough at the begining as it has many benefits which make it way more attractive for entrepreneurs like you.
With this Baby Plan, you will be able to:
- Have multiple web pages
- Install WordPress in a super simple way
- Transfer a free web page from another host to HostGator, in case you already have a web page somewhere else
- Bandwidth “not metered”, which means that HostGator will not charge for the amount of disk space we use or for the bandwidth we use, but our website is required to comply with the service agreement which states that no web page can use more than 25% of the system resources for more than 90 seconds, which is certainly very rare but could eventually happen.
- Free SSL certificate, which offers security by encrypting communication between the server and website visitors, and displaying a padlock icon next to the name of the website in the address bar, with a very high level of protection
- Free domain name included, as long as the hosting is contracted for a minimum of 12 months
- The cost of this Baby Plan is $ 11.95 + tax per month, if you decide to pay month to month, but here is a good deal if you contract this plan with annual payment, and this advantage is that it includes for free the domain name registration.
If you choose to pay the full year, the annual price would be $60, which divided by 12 months gives us a monthly payment of $5 a month, which is less than half versus what that they would pay if they choose month to month.
After getting the hosting, you must:
1.1 Choose a domain name
In this case, this is exactly where you should select the name of your online store.
Now, I preferably recommend that you use the domain name .COM type, which is no doubt still the most popular to this day, and in some way it is also a way to give confidence to potential buyers that your store is serious.
It is very possible that the name that you already chose someone else has previously took it, so you can use a word to complete the domain name.
They are known as modifiers, which means that if the name of the web page you want is already taken you can “modify” the name and add a word before or after the domain name, which will give you the opportunity to have the domain name that you want, slightly modified.
For example, some time ago, a friend who is part of a poker club told me that his club wanted to buy the domain name Big8.Com, but it was no longer available. So, I recommended that they could register the domain name Big8online.Com, which I think is still available.
Some other words that could be used to modify the name of the online store can be:
Obviously these are some examples, but if you have a better or similar idea, you can do try it.
1.2 Choose the hosting plan
There are 3 hosting plans:
As we mentioned before, I recommend starting with the Baby Plan because of its benefits, and if we go with a 1 year contract we will save a little bit in the domain name.
1.3 Create the HostGator account
Next, it is required that we create a HostGator account, so we will be required to type in our email account, a strong password and a security PIN.
1.4 Payment method
Next, it will be necessary to enter the payment method, either by credit card or PayPal, since both are accepted by HostGator.
1.5 Additional services
Finally, HostGator can offer some additional services, however, if this is your first online store, I would recommend not choosing any of these additional services.
The only one that I would probably recommend is the privacy for the domain, which let us get rid of all the SPAM.
When someone registers a domain name, that information becomes public and is regular accessed by people who want to offer their services online, so it is a little bit annoying, for which I would recommend getting this additional service
1.6 Discount Coupon
Here I am going to share a discount coupon for you to save 25%. The name of this coupon is “SHOPONLINE25“.
Finally, they should check that all the prices and services chosen are correct, and once they are ready, we need to proceed to pay.
1.8 Register a Domain Name
In case you already have a hosting company, then the only thing you would need is to register a domain name that represents your business, or what products you are going to sell.
The domain name usually starts with WWW and can end as .COM, and is also known as a URL.
In this example, I ask you to go to the following web address:
The price of the domain can have some variation, but normally it can cost around $12.95 per year and it is required to renew it every year but you can also get it for several years, which has a reduced price. I recommend that you initially register your domain name for 1 year, and depending on how the things go, and assuming that your online store will be doing great, you may later choose to renew for more than 1 year. But since it is his first project, I think a good strategy is to take it for 1 year.
When you purchase the domain name, you can check the box “Set Custom Nameservers (Optional)” in the cart and you can add the domain name that you want.
The domain will be registered with the right DNS right from the beginning.
Otherwise, you will have to change them manually and put the following DNS: ns6375.hostgator.com and ns6376.hostgator.com and you can do it right here:
1.8 Create an Add-on Domain
Later it will be required to create a new add on domain from the HostGator cPanel:
The data is as follows:
- New Domain Name: the name of the domain you have chosen (for example, your_domain.com)
- Subdomain: domain
- Document Root: /public_html/your_domain.com
If you like to have an FTP account you can select the box, although it is not required.
Step # 2 - Installing WordPress
The next step is really easy. WordPress is a software that is called CMS (Content Management System) that actually is installed on your hosting account, and that allows you to create and change web pages without having to learn any programming languages such as HTML5 or CSS.
It is very important here to distinguish between WordPress.Org and WordPress.Com.
The one that we recommend is WordPress.ORG, since WordPress.COM is very limited and, on the other hand, WordPress.ORG is way more flexible, besides that everything in this article will refer to WordPress.ORG.
All you have to do is, go to cPanel, then go to the Software section and click on QuickInstall.
Next, the following window will pop-up where you can install WordPress for free.
Following, you will see a window where you must complete the following information:
- Domain name: They must select from the list, the name of their domain
- Administrator’s Email: Type in your email here
- Blog title: I recommend the name of the website, but it can be changed later
- Admin User
- First Name
- Last Name
When you hit Install WordPress, it will take a short time for you to receive an email notification that the installation is complete. It is very important that you take note of that information and save this email, because we do not want to lose this info that is very important for managing WordPress.
Step # 3 - Installation of the SSL security certificate
The next step will be to install the SSL security certificate on the website.
Previously it was optional, and having this certificate was good. However, now having an SSL certificate on your website or e-commerce store is very important especially these days, as it is one of the most important factors that Google considers when it comes to ranking.
An SSL certificate allows you to protect the confidential information of your buyers when they enter their confidential information, such as their credit card number and other personal information.
By enabling the SSL certificate, the data is encrypted with security algorithms to protect against hackers who want to steal that data.
In addition, having this certificate gives your customers confidence, and sends the message that your website is secure.
The SSL certificate allows the website to display a small padlock like the one shown below in the address bar of your browser.
For this, the easiest thing is to contact HostGator technical support and they will install it for free. Support can be requested by live chat, (look for the following icon).
Or if you want to do the installation yourself, you can also do it, you just have to go to the following web address, and from there select the option that says SSL Management. https://portal.hostgator.com/
Step # 4 - Installing the theme
The next step will be to install a theme for the online store. There are many themes available, some have a cost and others are completely free. Considering that this is your first store, I recommend starting with a free theme.
The theme that I recommend is called OceanWP by Nick. It is a light theme, quite configurable, and it will allow you to create your first online store since it is prepared for WooCommerce, with a fairly professional design. It’s fast, responsive, and complies with SEO best practices. Also, it is compatible with Elementor, which is an editor that I also highly recommend.
To install it, all they have to do is go to the following web address: tutiendaonline.com/wp-admin, and enter your username and password which were the ones you selected when installing WordPress, and which should have come to you by email. When you enter your WordPress portal for the first time, you will see something similar to this.
Once you have entered your username and password, you enter the WordPress Dashboard, and you will see something similar to this:
Once you enter your username and password, you can go to the Dashboard WordPress, and you will see something similar to this:
And then in the search for new themes box, install OceanWP by Nick. Once installed it is necessary to activate it as well.
Once it is active, it will let us have a new look for our website, which is starting to look a little better now.
Step # 5 - Setup of Online Store
The next step will be to setup your online store, at least the most basic.
5.1 General settings
From this section, you can review and change anything you need from your online store, such as the page title, short description, default address, email, language, time zone, date and time format, etc. When finished, click Save changes.
In the same way, you may want that every time your visitors visit your web page, they see the WWW first, before the URL of your web page, and this is very easy to fix.
In this same section Settings, go to General, and in the WordPress Address (URL), you only have to write the name of your online store, for example, https://www.tutiendaonline.com, and do the same in the next box that says Site Address (URL). Do’nt forget to save the changes.
5.2 Change the Password
Perhaps one of the first recommendations will be to change the WordPress password for your website. As we have seen, the password that WordPress automatically generates is a fairly complex password, and at the same time quite difficult to remember, so if you wish, you can change the password so that it is easy to remember.
To do the above, from the WordPress Dashboard, in the left menu you must find where it says Users, All Users.
Next, select from the list the WordPress users that you have created and that must have an Administrator role, select Edit, and at the very bottom, a section that says Administration Account should come, and from there you can change the password you want. At the end of Update profile.
All the web pages that are created, as well as the products, have a unique web address, which must be permanent so that it can be properly replicated and be accessed at any time through this URL.
This is called a perrmalink and obviously we want to name each page or product with a name that makes sense to us, and to our visitors and even more important, than to search engines like Google or Bing, make sense to them.
The bad news is that by default, WordPress uses a rather strange format to name pages and products.
That is, if we use the format that WordPress uses by default, we will find URLs that are called “youronlinestore.com/?p=123“, when in reality we want it to be called “https://www.youronlinestore.com/contact”.
So to make this change, which is very simple, we only have to go to the section called Settings and then select Permalinks.
Next, from the list we must select the option that says Entry Name.
It is recommended to have a backup from our website, always available just in case. There are many plugins that I can recommend, completely free. The one that I personally like the most is the one called All-in-One WP Migration. To install this plugin, what you have to do is go to Plugins, and then Add new.
Then, they must type in the name of the plugin in the keyword box.
From the search results, the following plugin must be selected and installed.
At the end of the installation, we must go ahead and Activate this plugin. Once activated, they will be able to make their backups in the following way.
In the left section of the WordPress dashboard, you must click on the plugin that has just been installed and then select the option that says Backups.
Spam is quite negative for your website as it makes it look unprofessional. So what we have to do is prevent anyone from posting a comment without our authorization.
For this, please go to Settings and then Discussion. And choose the 2 settings that I say below, for a comment to appear, the comment must be approved manually, and also, the author of the comment must have a previously approved comment.
Now comes a very important part, which is that we must work on our logo. The logo is perhaps one of the first impressions your visitors will receive, so I recommend taking care to select a logo that represents our online store.
If you know how to use Photoshop or any other graphic design tool, you are already one step ahead. Or maybe you have a friend who can design the logo for free which would be great.
Otherwise, there are many websites where you can buy a logo. One of them is Fiverr.Com, where you can get in touch with a Freelancer, and have them design a low-cost logo for you.
There is a site where you can get your logo completely free for the purposes of this demonstration, and that place is called VistaPrint.Com and look for a logo that you like, which as I said, will be free. I usually use ConstantContact.Com, because I use that tool for Email Marketing as well.
I personally do not recommend that your website looks too corporate, but instead is better in my opinion that the website has a personal touch, so look for a simple logo. When you have your logo, you should go to Appearance and then Themes, and then Customize.
Here you can choose to modify what you want about the theme you have installed, which as we explained above, the theme we selected is called OceanWP by Nick. Go to Site Identity and then Select Site Icon.
5.7 Set the colors of your online store
Because we chose one of the best themes out there, OceanWP by Nick, this theme has many features, and one of those is that we can change the colors of our website very easy. For this, you can go to Appearance, Themes and Customize, and explore all the options so that you become familiar, and from there you can play with the colors that you like the most.
5.8 Make the site visible to search engines
In the Settings section, Reading, there is a setting that is very important and that we have to attend to just when we are starting our website. It’s called Search Engine Visibility, and we have to make sure the box is checked. With this, Google, Bing or any search engine, will be able to come and index our online store so that it begins to rank in Google.
As you have seen, there are many WordPress settings that we need to check and see if they are as we want them to be. At the moment we are only going to see the basic ones, but as you have more knowledge, you will be able to come back and change whatever you want.
5.9 Google Analytics
The next step will be to enable the tracking the visitors that we have on our website from 2 very important tools, which are Google Analytics and Google Search Console. These tools are also free. So we will start with the Google Analytics configuration.
The first step will be to go to the following web address: https://www.analytics.google.com, and create an account from there. You can use your Gmail address if you have one, or whatever email address you want to use. To create an account, they must do it from the section that says Admin and that they will be able to find it with the following icon.
Then click on the section that says Create Account and follow all the instructions.
You will be asked for an account name, I usually use the same email for this purpose.
Next, check the box to Create a universal property, and write the name of your online store as shown below. Also, they must check the box that says Create a Universal Google Analytics property only. With this you will get a property number that starts with UA and a number.
The next step will be to install a plugin in your WordPress console called GA Google Analytics. As with the previous plugins, we have to follow the same procedure.
Go to the Plugins section, and Add new, and from the search box, please type GA Google Analytics and select the plugin with the following icon from the list.
Once this is done, they simply have to go to the settings of this plugin, and type in the ID of the property that you just obtained in Google Analytics.
Same thing, I recommend unchecking the box that says Disable tracking of Admin- level users.
With this settings, we are good to go with Google Analytics to start getting statistics on the visitors that we have on our website, such as how much traffic the website receives, where it comes from, how much time a visitor spends on your website, and all kinds of information related to the traffic of your website.
Once again, this is a basic configuration, I highly recommend learning as much as possible about these tools that are very useful and provide all the information to be able to optimize our online store and make the changes to increase traffic and sales.
5.10 Yoast SEO
The next step will be to install Yoast, which is the plugin that will allow us to set our online store in a much easier way so that it has all the SEO elements so that Google can gradually begin to rank our online store in the first page, in an organic way, that is, without having to set paid ads such as Google Ads.
To proceed to install this Yoast plugin, you must follow the same procedure that we have already used to add a new plugin, which is to go to Plugins and then select the option that says Add New, and in the search box for plugins, we must write the word Yoast.
Once you have installed this plugin, the next step will be to make it active. Later, the following configuration will have to be carried out. You can see that in the left menu of the WordPress Dashboard an option that says SEO appears, as indicated in the following image.
The next step is to go to the General section, and here the following menu will appear from which you must initially select Desktop.
I recommend using the configuration wizard, which in an easy and simple way will allow us to set our online store for SEO.
The next step of the wizard will be to specify the kind of the site, in our case it’s an online store.
Next, we must say if it is an organization or a person. If it is a person, only the user with whom we have created the page must be selected from the list, which will surely be the Administrator. If it is an organization, you must write its name, in addition to uploading the logo, and fill in the URLs of the social networks if they already have these channels defined.
Next, we will need to define whether search engines should see “Posts” in search results, as well as whether search engines should see “Pages” in search results. In my case, I recommend answering both questions affirmatively.
Later you will be asked if your site will have multiple authors?
Considering that it is an online store, we could initially answer that No.
Later, we will have to define the website name, and the title separator.
Later Yoast asks us for permission if they can collect anonymous information about our website and its use, I would suggest not, but that decision is up to you.
The next step is only in case we want to register with Yoast to receive newsletters and information about SEO, WordPress, etc. Again I leave this to your consideration but in general I always recommend answering no to these types of questions.
At the end we will see the message that we have successfully completed this Yoast setup wizard.
After we have finished with the wizard, let’s look at the Features section. I do not recommend moving anything here.
The same in the Integrations section, I do not recommend changing anything here.
However, the last option is very important, which are the webmaster tools and especially the Google Verification Code, which we will obtain by clicking on the weblink that says Google Search Console.
At this time, the web page Google Webmaster Central will open in a new window. If you currently have a Google account, you just need to make sure you log in with your Google account, and if you don’t have one at this time, you can open a new one.
Next, it will display the following menu where you must choose the HTML tag option.
Here comes something very important, when you click on HTML tag, you must copy the code that appears below.
Then go again to the WordPress Dashboard and that code that they copied, now they are going to paste it into the Yoast console, where it says Google verification code and click Save changes.
Later, you will have to go back to the Webmaster Central and click on Verify. At this point, you will see a message that the ownership has already been successfully verified by Webmaster Central.
If you want to do the same with Bing, you are most welcome to, although without any doubt, the most important will be Google by far.
Step # 6 - WooCommerce Installation
Very well, we have made a great advance in our tutorial on how to create a free virtual store with WooCommerce, so now it will be your turn to install precisely one of the key elements, which is WooCommerce.
WooCommerce is the plugin that will allow us to manage the products that we are going to sell, the shipping of said products, the taxes, the payment method, and everything related to the sale of the products. WooCommerce is undoubtedly one of the leading e-commerce platforms and is considered open source, which is free and allows many developers to make software for this platform.
WooCommerce is actually a plugin, so they have already started to learn how to install plugins, and we will do the same next with the WooCommerce plugin.
For this purpose, we must go to Plugins, Add new, and in the search box write WooCommerce.
And in the same way as for all the other plugins, after installing it we must make it active. When installing WooCommerce, we automatically install a set of pages that will help us to set our online store. Now from the WordPress Dashboard we have to go to Pages, All pages, and there we you can see the pages that have already been created by default.
6.1 Add Home and Blog pages
However, we are going to add 2 new pages, which are Home and Blog. For doing this, right from WordPress we must click on Pages and select Add New.
And we must click where it says Add title, and replace with the word Home, which is how we want the new page we are adding to be named.
We must click on the button that says Publish that normally appears in the upper right corner of WordPress.
Next we must do the same with the Blog page, which is to add a new page, and write the word Blog and publish it.
Later we must go to Settings and Reading right from the WordPress Dashboard and set what will be the cover and the entry page. We must select A static page and then select Home and Blog from the respective lists.
Step # 7 - Creating a Menu
Next we must have a Menu. At first, WooCommerce creates a menu, but it is better that we take care of ours.
For such, we must go to Appearance and Menu. And click on the link that says Create a new menu. Then, in the box, write the word Menu and click on Create Menu.
Then, we must set the location of the menu, for which we must define our Menu as the Primary.
The next step will be to choose the pages that we want to be displayed as part of the menu, so for this purpose, we go to the WordPress Dashboard and we must choose the pages that we think are most useful for our visitors.
From the section Add menu items, we are going to choose from the list: Blog, Home, Shop and Cart and add them to the menu.
As you will see, the pages that we add now appear as part of the Menu Structure, so next, we must rearrange the menu options, for which, just by clicking and holding it, you will be able to see that the cursor changes to a cross, with which we can rearrange the menu options in order of importance for us.
Step # 8 - Adding Images
Once we have created the menu, and considering that we have already created the Home page, we are going to add some elements so that our online store begins to look like a professional web page.
Next we go to Pages, and then All Pages, and from the list we are going to click on the page called Home and click on Edit.
Next, you will see the Classic WordPress Editor for which you must click on the plus sign to add a block, and then choose the image icon so you can add an image to their home page.
Now, a page will appear where you can add media, for which they must click on the box that says Upload.
Next, you will need to upload an image from your computer, preferably no more than 900-1200 pixels wide, no more than that.
They must type in all the attachment details, such as: Alternative text, Title, Legend and Description and then click on the button that says Insert on the page.
Since in this case we want to add a large image that takes up the most space on the main page, I recommend that it be no more than 900-1200 pixels wide.
For your online store, I recommend that you preferably take your own pictures by yourself, if you know how to use Photoshop it will be very easy for you. There is another tool that I highly recommend called Pixlr, which is free.
Step # 9 - WooCommerce Setup
The next step is how to set up WooCommerce, from the address of our store, to the currency that we will take, the delivery service that we will user, taxes and something very important, the payment method that we will take. In our example, we are going to sell ice cream cakes in our city, but you can sell anything you want.
9.1.1 - Store Address
So before we start, we need to do a couple of things first for which it is required to go to WooCommerce and then Settings and General. Here we must enter the address of the physical store, if you already have one, or if not simply enter your address.
This information is important since shipping costs will be calculated from this address, in addition to the fact that taxes are also calculated based on this country.
9.1.2 - General Options
Next, we must specify where we want to sell our products or services. This refers to where we want to sell our products, and the options are Sell to all countries, Sell to specific countries or Sell to all countries, except …
In this case, you must decide where you want to sell your products, but for the purposes of this tutorial, we are going to select Sell to specific countries, and the country we are going to choose is the United States (US). After that we need to choose the shipping location (s), and in this case, since we are selling ice cream cakes, we will only be able to send them in the country in which we sell, so the option that we are going to activate is Send to all the countries you sell to, and the customer’s location will be the Shop Base Address.
At the end there are 3 more boxes, which are related to taxes and coupons. I recommend activating all three, which are: Enable tax rates and calculations, Enable the use of coupon codes and Calculate coupon discounts sequentially.
9.1.3 - Currency Options
Later we must set the currency, in our case as we are in the US, the currency is the dollar, but you must select your own currency.
Next we must take care of everything related to taxes, so you must confirm that these options adhere to your taxes as they should be paid in your own countries, preferably with an accountant you trust.
9.2.1 - Tax options
You must choose if you want the prices to be displayed in the online store, with or without taxes. In this case, I always do ours without taxes. Same thing, you must choose whether taxes should be calculated based on the main address of your business or based on the customer’s address.
This is especially relevant in the US since sales taxes are calculated based on the address of the end customer, but each country is different so it is necessary to review your local laws.
In the same way, it must be specified what type of shipping tax, that is, if you are going to charge taxes for the freight, and there are several options, if the tax is the standard or default, or if it is a zero tax rate or reduced rate.
In the same way, you must choose if you want to round tax at subtotal level, if there are additional tax classes, and how you want to display prices in the shop, during cart and checkout: including or excluding taxes.
At the end, you must also choose if you want to use a price display suffix next to the price, such as “VAT included” or “+ Sales Tax“, to explain your pricing policy, to conclude you must say if you want to display tax totals either as a single total or itemized.
I recommend that you do various tests, to see how each of the options works.
9.2.2 - Standard rates
They will then need to set the tax rate. To do this, we must go to the section that says Standard rates and insert row.
In the country code, 2 digits must be entered, for example, US for the United States, MX for Mexico, ES for Spain, and so on.
If the tax rate is different in each state where you are going to sell your products, you must include a different line for each state or even for each city (as in the US), but again here my recommendation is that you consult with your expert local in taxes.
In the box that says Rate %, you must enter the tax rate that you are going to charge and in the box that says Tax Name, you must specify the name of the tax (ie Sales Tax)..
9.2.3 - Rates Zero Rate and Reduced Rate
Regarding the zero rate and reduced rates, in this example the only thing we are going to mention is that, for example, in the case of food in the US, the tax rate is zero.
In this section, we are going to specify how much we are going to charge for freight or shipping costs, and the 3 options that we have to define are: Shipping Zones, Shipping Options and Shipping Classes.
9.3.1 - Shipping Zones
For WooCommerce, a zone is an area where we are going to deliver our products and that we are going to charge the same fee in that zone, and that zone can be made up of different regions or zip codes.
For example, if our business is a restaurant, then let’s say we can call an area such as Zone 1 which would be the nearest to the restaurant, and this area would be made up of regions, which can be the zip codes of the neighborhoods close to our restaurant.
Now, if our business is selling shoes throughout the country, and let’s say that in the city where you live you are not going to charge for the home delivery service because you are going to do it yourself, then we would have at least 2 zones, the first would be Zone 1, which would be your home city, and Zone 2, which would be the rest of the country.
That said, we must click on Add a shipping area, where we must put a name of the area, the region or regions of the area and the shipping methods.
In our case, we had mentioned that we are going to sell ice cream cakes in our home city with different rates depending on the area, then we can call one of the Zones, Zone 1, and the regions of that area would be the zip codes that are part of Zone 1, which in this case can be those zip codes that are close to our shop.
If you, on the other hand, are going to sell shoes in the whole country, for example, then a Zone could be the North Zone and the region would be the states that make up the north of the country. Another zone would be the Central Zone and another the South Zone.
Now the next step will be to set the shipping methods, for which it is required to click on the button that says Add shipping method, and the options are: fixed price, free shipping or local collection.
In our example, we are going to select the Flat rate option, and then you must specify if the delivery is taxable, as well as what is the rate that you are going to charge to deliver in that area.
In our example, we are going to select the Flat rate option, and then you must choose if the shipping is taxable, as well as what is the rate that you are going to charge to deliver in that area.
9.3.2 - Shipping Options
In this section we must set a few more things, such as if we want to activate the shipping calculator on the purchase page, or if we want to hide the shipping costs until the address is entered. Or how we want to handle the destination of the shipment, if by default to the shipping address that the customer has specified or to their billing address.
9.3.3 - Shipping Classes
The shipping classes, are for example, if we want to use delivery or if the customer can pick up at the store. It is always good to offer choices to customers.
In this case we must click on Add shipping class, where we must type in the name of the shipping class, the slug and the description. For example, in the case of Delivery, the name will be the same, and the slug is a unique identifier and is part of the web address, for example, it would be Delivery, and in the description field we can expand our comment. We would add another shipping class for Pickup.
In this section we are going to define the payment methods that we are going to take. The forms of payment that I normally use and that I highly recommend are Stripe and Paypal, but you can use Direct Bank Transfer and Cash on Delivery as well.
9.4.1 - Stripe
Stripe is one of the world’s largest and they have had a huge success because they are widely used by many online stores, which allows them to take payments with credit cards, without the need for fixed term contracts or anything like that, so I think that it is the easiest way to start your online business.
I’m not going to go into detail at this point about this payment method, but you can check out an exclusive tutorial on Stripe on our Blog soon.
9.4.2 - PayPal
Paypal I do not think it needs introudction since it is an online transaction method that emerged many years ago and that allows online stores to take payments in a safe way.
To activate this payment method, we are going to click on the section that says Payments and enable the option that says Paypal, and then proceed to the configuration.
We must confirm the title, description and most importantly, the email that is associated with our Paypal account.
In the advanced options, the most important thing is to define the recipient’s email address, and the invoice prefix.
That’s all! That simple and that easy. In addition, with Paypal we can also take payments with credit cards, and also of course a transfer from another Paypal account.
9.4.3 - Direct Bank Transfer
Direct bank transfer is simply asking the client to make the deposit in our bank account, and once they have done it, send us a copy of the proof of payment, then we proceed to send the product.
Here they will need to enter the account name, account number, bank name and additional data such as routing number, IBAN, BIC / Swift.
9.4.4 - Cash on delivery
Cash on delivery is a very simple method, which simply allows you to take the payment when the product is delivered.
For the purposes of this tutorial, I am going to explain the cash on delivery method, which is the easiest, but I promise that later I will also publish the other methods such as Stripe.
To enable this option, we are going to click on the section that says Payments and we must enable the option that says Cash on Delivery, and then click on where it says Settings and proceed and enter all the information such as Title, Description, Instructions and Activate for payment methods. shipping, select from the list for which shipping method we want to use this payment method.
Here we are going to see which are the emails that are already created within WooCommerce so that when, for example, someone places a new order, a new email is automatically sent with all the relevant information.
You can check these emails and change what you want, but to give you an idea, there are templates already for New order, cancelled order, failed order, order on-hold, processing order, completed order, etcetera. Click on Manage to please review and make the necessary adjustments.
Step # 10 - Add Products in WooCommerce
We have finally reached the part where we will add the products or services that we are going to sell in our online store. The next thing we are going to do is start uploading our products to the online store. So get to work, and you really can sell any product in your store, from physical products, subscriptions, software, music, etc.
In this case we are going to continue with our example that we are going to sell ice cream cakes in Houston. For sure, you will be selling different products, but as we have already said, it can be anything, from clothes to flowers.
The first thing we are going to do is define the categories into which our products fall, in our example, they can be cakes and ice cream cupcakes for example. For this purpose, we must go from our WordPress Dashboard, to the section called Products and then Categories.
Following, we must add the 2 categories that we mentioned above and that are Cakes and Ice Cream Cupcakes in our example, making sure to fill out all the fields that are: name, slug, parent category, description, display type and thumbnail image.
Remember that the slug is the name of the URL with which each category will be identified and it is usually the last part of this URL, for example, if our store is called tutiendaonline.com, and the category is called cakes, then the slug must be the word cakes.
If the slug is made up of 2 or more words, that is, if we had vegan cakes, for example, our slug should be called vegan cakes. It is not necessary to add the domain name tutiendaonline.com, since the slug is only the last part, that is, the full name of the URL will be tutiendaonline.com/pasteles, being that the slug is only the last part after the diagonal / .
In the case that, for example, you were selling tennis, perhaps the categories could be the name of the manufacturer, for example the categories would be Nike, Adidas, New Balance, etc.
Once you have created the 2 categories that are cakes and ice cream cupcakes, the next step will be to add the products.
We go from the WordPress dashboard again, we click on Products and then we have to select Add new.
Next we are going to type in the name of our product, and then we must also add an image of the product that is attractive and that allows us to attract many customers. In the same way, they must write a text with the description of the product in the space available for this purpose.
I can say that an image for a product I recommend that it be no larger than 900-1200 pixels wide, and preferably no more than 150 Kbytes in file size. There are many apps out there available for free, but the one I recommend is called Pixlr, and with this great tool you can use to make your pictures smaller.
When you click on Add Media, a window will open to add media, from which you can choose any other picture that you have previously uploaded to the media library, or on the other side, you must upload a new one, which is our case.
It is very important to complete all the fields, which are alternative text, title, caption, description, as well as alignment (left, right or centered), link to (if we want that when someone clicks on the picture go to another web page and the size (thumbnail, small, medium, large or full size).
10.2.1 - Product Data
In WooCommerce, we basically have several different types of products, which are: simple product, grouped product, external / affiliate, and variable product.
On the other side, a simple product can be a watch, a ring, a necklace or those kinds of products that do not have any variation or that do not handle different sizes.
Now, within simple products, we can handle virtual products that are intangible and do not ship, and downloadable products, which give access to a file after purchase, such as software, a digital product such as a e-book.
They are those products that are sold in packages together with other products, or targeted sales that are products that you recommend instead of the product that is being seen, products that are more profitable, or of better quality or more expensive.
Variable products are those that have different variations, that is, in our case of ice cream cakes, let’s say we have 3 different sizes, small, medium and large. So our product is considered variable. In the case of shoes, it could also be considered a variable product, since each shoe has different sizes, just like the clothes.
External or Affiliate Products
External or affiliated products are when you are going to sell products, but they are not yours, but you are going to use the drop shipping method, or affiliate is when you are going to recommend and sell a third party product.
10.2.2 - General
In our case, we are going to select that our product is variable. Then we must proceed to enter the tax status and the tax class. That is, if we are going to charge tax for our product and what type of tax it is.
10.2.3 - Inventory
Here you must define if you are going to handle SKUs, and if you are going to enable inventory management. An SKU refers to an inventory storage unit, that is, a unique identifier for each product and service that can be purchased.
In our tutorial, we have a small operation, we are not going to enable the inventory management, but it is important for you to know that WooCommerce is a great platform and can keep track of inventory for you.
Next, we must specify all related to the shipping of our products, such as the weight, dimensions and shipping class. These fields are important, since if you are going to use the service of a delivery company, the rates will most likely be based on this information, but as in our example of ice cream cakes, we ourselves will carry out the delivery service in our own city, this is not very important to say.
10.2.5 Linked Products
One of the best features of WooCommerce, without a doubt, are upsells and cross-sells. That is, as we said before, upsells are products that you recommend instead to the product that is being offered, for example, products that are more profitable, or of better quality or more expensive. On the other hand, cross-sells are products that you promote in the cart, based on the current product.
This is where we are going to define the attributes of the products, and considering that our products are going to be variable (ice cream cakes), we are going to define 3 attributes (or sizes) that are small, medium and large. For this, we must click Add. We must add the name of the attribute, in our case it is Size and type in Small, Medium and Large separating the values with “|“.
We must make sure that the box that says Used for variations is chosen. And let’s not forget to Save attributes and Save as Draft.
Now, once we have defined the attributes of our products, we are going to assign those attributes to our products. We must go to Add variation, and then we are going to add each variation corresponding to each size of our ice cream cakes. That is, we start by selecting the small size and we also click on the option to expand.
Next we must make sure to enter all the information of this product, such as Activated, Inventory management, SKU (if you are going to manage it), the normal price, the reduced price, the inventory quantity, allow reservations , low stock threshold, weight, dimensions, shipment class (same as parent or select the class that you have already defined above), tax class (standard, zero or reduced rate) and a description.
At the end, click on Save changes and then click on Update.
We are going to repeat this same procedure for the medium and large ice cream cake sizes, and likewise, I recommend that you add a couple more products so that you feel comfortable with the procedure for adding new products.
In the same way, they will have to assign which category each of their products belongs to, as well as the tags that they can assign to help with Google.
10.2.8 Product Picture
In the same way, we must add the picture to the product. Add a featured image on the home page, which will have the functionality that it will appear as a thumbnail picture in Google.
As we have done previously, they must select from the existing image library, or upload a new image following the recommendations in this tutorial.
10.2.9 Add the rest of the products
Our goal is to be able to give you a better understanding of this procedure. You can review the results on your own website and see how your online store is gradually improving.
I recommend that you do practice yourself to pretend that you are going to buy a product in your own store so that you can have a good look and feel on how your store is going to work.
10.2 Featured Products
We can add on the main page, a compendium of featured products to make it more attractive for visitors who can see the products that we want to promote on our online store in the first instance.
For this purpose, we must go to Pages, All pages, and from the list, we must click on Edit our home page.
For doing that, it is important that you go first to the products that you want to choose as featured products, and check that setting and enable the Featured setting first.
Upon opening, we will add the following code
[featured_products per_page=”16″ columns=”4″ orderby=”date” order=”desc”]
After that, you must go to the products that you want to choose as featured products, and check that setting and enable the Featured setting first.
The result would be something like this ..
10.3 Discount Coupons
Finally, we are going to see how to create discount coupons for your online store. For this purpose, we must go to Marketing and then select Coupons.
Later we will see the existing coupons on the board (if any), so we must from here Add coupon.
Next we must capture all the data related to our discount coupon, such as the Coupon Code, the Description, the Discount Type, the Coupon Amount, if we are going to allow free shipping, and the expiration date of the coupon.
Similarly, use restrictions such as minimum spending, maximum spending, individual use, excluding items on sale, the products to which it applies, the products excluded from the coupon, the categories that are included and excluded, as well as emails electronics allowed if any.
The limits of use of our coupon must also be defined, such as if there is a limit of use per coupon and per user.
I hope this tutorial helps you earn a lot of money with your personal project that you are going to carry out, and obviously this is only the first step to create a basic online store, but that it allows you to gain more confidence so that you learn more, and continue adding a lot of functionality to your online store.
Sure, there are a lot of extra items and a lot of setup that needs to be done, but unless you understand the basics, keep getting better.
I am very glad that you have reached the end, and please send me your comments, I will be happy to know that this tutorial has been helpful.