In today’s online marketplace, your website is more than just a storefront to attract customers with information and appealing design. Your website can function as a full-service retail outlet where customers can find, research and compare products—and ultimately make their purchase, all without leaving your site.
To start building e-commerce functionality on your WordPress site, I always recommend the WooCommerce plugin, an open-source platform that provides almost innumerable options for your online store’s appearance, products, payments, and more. WooCommerce, for example, can allow your customers to make deposits and payment plans, book appointments, pre-order products and even coordinate multiple vendors. And because customers can do all of these things on your site, the process is simple and trustworthy, and allows you to be the sole representative of your business interactions.
Moreover, WooCommerce offers a full menu of tools to track, organize, and allocate your inventory and your online transactions, including syncing to your accounting software and managing your shipping options.
Of course, in addition to ease-of-use, online customers also want complete assurance that their financial transaction is secure. Fortunately, there are a number of payment gateways on the market that are held to the highest possible standard for privacy and safety. My personal recommendation is Stripe, a platform that plugs directly into WooCommerce for fast, easy, secure payment.
And from an online marketing perspective, one of the most important aspects of these tools is that they all work within your own site without any third-party redirection or interference. As a web designer and online marketer, my goal is to get people to your website and keep them there. That consistency is how you build relationships and brand strength, because every interaction you have with clients and potential clients will be under your company’s name.