Starting an online store with WooCommerce is really easy yet so many are scared to do it thinking they need to be tech savvy to do so. This article will guide you through the process of starting an online store with WooCommerce.
Steps to Start an Online Store with WooCommerce
- Choose a hosting provider and buy a hosting plan.
- Install WordPress and WooCommerce.
- Choose a WooCommerce Theme and Customize.
- Add products and payment gateway.
- Starts selling!
How to Start An Online Store With WooCommerce Introduction
In this article, we will be going through the steps to start or create an online store using WooCommerce.
We will try our best to guide you through the whole process and make it as easy as we can for you to follow.
What is WooCommerce?
WooCommerce is an e-commerce plugin for WordPress.
On the other hand, WordPress is a Content Management System (CMS) that allows you to build website.
However, there are other plugins for WordPress aside than WooCommerce, but WooCommerce is the only plugin for WordPress that will allow you to turn your website into an online store.
We won’t go into details on this. It’s enough if you know about what WordPress and WooCommerce are.
Just remember, you don’t need WooCommerce to build a website with WordPress but you will need WooCommerce to build an online store with WordPress.
Our first step now is to buy a hosting plan to host our online store.
Hostinger WordPress Hosting Plan
Hostinger is one of the top web hosting providers that offers a very good hosting plan that we will need to purchase to setup our online store.
You are free to choose your own web hosting provider but we will be using Hostinger in this post. You can read this post to gain more information on hosting providers.
Go to Hostinger (affiliate link) and browse to their WordPress hosting plan.
I would suggest that you opt for
WordPress Starter plan. We know that the
Single WordPress is cheaper by $2 dollar but the specs for the plan is just not worth it.
Go for the
WordPress Starter because with this plan you will be able to have multiple websites running your online store.
But why do I need to run mutiple online stores though? Well, it’s simple, you can’t just dump all your different kind of products into one store. It’s better to have niche specific store rather than a general store where you sell all sort of products.
Plus, a niche specific store is much easier to promote and it gives that feel of security to your customer.
What else comes with the WordPress Starter Plan?
On top of having the ability to have multiple websites, the plan also offers free SSL and CDN (both are for website security, it’s also easier to setup with a click of your mouse).
Another important thing is the free domain that you will get when you opt for the plan.
Last but not least, the 30-days money back guarantee. This means that you can try setting up your online store and everything. If you still feel you are not able to commit to this, opt out for a refund within 30 days.
What happens after I bought my WordPress hosting plan?
During checkout, you will be able to select the type of payment you wish to use. Just treat this like buying item from Amazon or any marketplace.
Hostinger will also ask you to choose a domain. Please choose a proper domain for your online store. For example, my domain is
Once everything is done, you will be able to log into your Hostinger admin dashboard. Hostinger will automatically install WordPress for you. It might take some time so be patient.
This is how your Hostinger admin dashboard will look like. You can go through and familiarize yourself with it.
We are going to go straight to your WordPress site to create the online store.
WooCommerce Setup on Your WordPress site.
By right, everything should be automatic when you bought the WordPress hosting plan as Hostinger will do the necessary. If not, simply contact their support for help.
Try going to your website using your domain address. Mine is
If you can see your website then that means that your website is already up and running. However, it is just an empty website at this point.
Log into Your WordPress Admin Dashboard.
https://your_domain.com/wp-admin and you should see a login box.
For example, to make things easier to understand. We have created an empty test online store at
https://homedecor.rasyue.com . As you type in
https://your_domain.com/wp-admin , you will be able to see the page below. Proceed to login using your credentials that Hostinger has provided.
On successful login, you will be redirected to the Admin Dashboard. Well, we call it the admin dashboard, but really, it is just a page with lots of functionalities, don’t be scared.
The left panel with menus will look different on your dashboard since I have already installed WooCommerce on my test online store. Don’t worry, we will get to that point shortly.
So, this is your site’s admin dashboard where you will be managing your site or online store contents, products and so on.
With WordPress installed and running, we can proceed to installing WooCommerce plugin to enable our online store.
Installing WooCommerce Plugin
Go to your left panel and look for the menu
On this page here, you can find all sort of plugins to add more features to your site/online store. But for now, we are going to search for WooCommerce first. In the right side Search Box, type in WooCommerce and search.
We have already installed WooCommerce for our site but you can go ahead and click on the
Install Now button to install WooCommerce. Once done, click on
Activate and let the magic happen.
You’ll be surprised at how easy it is to install WooCommerce, once your click
Activate, it will guide you through the whole process which is really easy to follow. Also, it will ask to install some other plugins, don’t be shy, just agree to install it as it will be really helpful to you later.
Once you activated the WooCommerce plugin and successfully set it up. You can view the WooCommerce menu on the left panel. Finish up all the things in the list and you will be good to go.
The next thing to do is to get a theme for your online store.
We will talk about how to add products to your online store afterwards.
Adding Theme to Your Online Store
On the left panel, go to
Themes . On the top left click on the
Add New button.
Themes can be search on this page, whether it’s a paid theme or free.
We are using Botiga at the moment because it’s free and also the theme has a very nice design. You don’t have to use the same theme though.
Each theme is unique and with that it allows you to customize it to a certain extend. If you want full control and fully customized theme that only belongs to you, you will have to create a theme from scratch. You might have to hire a developer for the job.
Otherwise, you can just opt for a free theme which is also a great option. We will list down some of the top free themes for WooCommerce.
Top Free WooCommerce Themes
Below is the list of top free WooCommerce themes that you can try out for your online store.
This is just a list that you can go through and try out to find which is best for you.
Keep in mind that free theme has it’s limit and usually has no support. A paid theme on the other hand is provided with supports and you have almost full control over your theme for customization.
However, it’s fine to use a free theme when you are starting out. You can switch over to paid themes when you start generating income from your store.
Tips to Choose WooCommerce Theme
- Try to choose a lightweight theme since it can affects your online store’s speed. Slow site’s speed can cause people to lose interest to browse through your store.
- A simple looking theme is always better than complicated ones.
- When choosing theme, read the reviews, you can gauge whether the theme is good or the opposite.
- Depending on your products, a theme can really pops out your product or can be a total failure. It depends on the layout, colours and fonts.
- Always choose themes that offer the best mobile responsiveness. Most of your customers will be browsing on their mobile phone.
Finalizing Your Online Store
After you have chosen your theme, you can customized it in any way you want. If you can’t find where to go to customize your theme’s design, it’s on the same page where you install a theme.
Customize blue button is clickable and it will bring you to the customization page. Have fun customizing your online store.
What’s an online store without products?
To add products to your online store, go to the left panel ->
This is the
Add Products page, just fill in all the details of your products. It’s pretty straightforward.
However, I would like to elaborate on one thing, the
Product data or more or less the Product type.
There are 4 types you can choose for the
- Simple Product – Most of products will be this type. A stand-alone, unique, physical product.
- Simple Product – Can be virtual or downloadable for digital product.
- Grouped Product – You can read more here.
- External/Affiliate product – For affiliate marketing product.
- Variable Product – Variable product is for product which have different variation. For example, if you are selling shirt which has 5 different colour. You can set that as variable product. Read more here.
Setting Up Payment Method
This is the most important part of an online store. What’s an online store without an online payment method?
WooCommerce offers a variety of payment methods that you can use to provide flexibility to your customer to make payment.
Below is a list of the type of payment that WooCommerce offers.
- Direct Bank Transfer
- Cash on Delivery
- Apple Pay
- The list goes on and on…
The above is a list of international payment gateways which works perfect if your target customers are international.
However, the transaction fee can be quite something. I would suggest that you take a look into your country local payment gateway. You still have to pay the transaction fee but usually it’s cheaper.
Setting Up PayPal Payment
Setting up Stripe on WooCommerce is really easy. Go to your
Admin Dashboard and go to
Plugins. Search for
Install the plugin in the red box, WooCommerce PayPal Payments.
Once it’s installed, activate it then proceed through the steps. Make sure you already have a PayPal account since it will ask for your PayPal account information.
Activate and it will bring you to plugins list page.
Settings to setup your PayPal account.
Activate PayPal and then it will ask for your email. Just follow along the instructions. Once done, if you go to your checkout page, you can see the PayPal option.
And… you are done with setting up PayPal payment.
Setting Up Stripe Payment
Same like installing
PayPal WooCommerce plugin, search for
Stripe WooCommerce Plugin.
WooCommerce Stripe Payment Gateway plugin and then activate it.
Settings and it will redirect you to
Edit account keys and it will ask for your
publishable key and
You can get both of these keys from your Stripe account. Login into your Stripe account and you can see the keys on your account page.
Once done, you can go to your checkout page and see an option to pay using Stripe.
Last but not least..
Before you can start promoting your online store and start selling, here is the final steps you have to make sure you did.
Please make sure you have these pages ready and filled with correct information.
- Privacy & Policy page.
- Refund Policy page.
- Shipping page.
- Contact Us page.
- About Us page.
These 5 pages are really crucial to any online store. If you are unsure on what to write on these pages, simply go to any top marketplace ( and copy their pages and modify it to suit your online store (don’t blindly copy, please).
We hope that this article will be able to provide you with the insights and information to help you to start your online store.
If you would like to read more regarding this topic, I would suggest to read these similar posts that I wrote.