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The Community Takes Action at the do_action Charity Hackathon

June 29, 2015 in Blog. Leave a comment

It’s no secret that I love the WordPress community. But when that community looks beyond itself and reaches out to less fortunate individuals, then I really get excited.

That’s exactly what happened on Saturday, 20 June down in Cape Town, South Africa. As an organiser for the WordPress Cape Town community, I put together the second annual do_action( ‘wordpress-charity-hackathon’ ). Based on the results, I think it’s safe to say that the day was a huge success.

In the space of a mere eight hours, our team of 50 volunteers put together eight brand new websites for eight deserving charities. It’s a feat that makes me incredibly proud to be a part of this great community in Cape Town.

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How Much Traffic Does Your Store Need to Increase its Revenue?

June 26, 2015 in Blog. Leave a comment

It’s strange to make a statement like “the more traffic you have, the more sales you’ll make.” Seems to make eCommerce sound more simple than it actually is, right? But the fact of the matter is, it’s true.

The more traffic your store receives, the more revenue you’ll make. Even if your conversion rate is 1%, that 1% is still going to result in exponential increases in revenue between 100 and 100,000 visitors. So if you want to make more money from selling online, one of the first things you should improve is your site traffic.

Today, we’re going to show you exactly how increasing your traffic can also increase your revenue. We’ll also give you some formulas you can use to determine just what you stand to gain from higher site traffic, order values, or conversion rates.

Let’s get started by taking a look at just how closely your traffic and revenue are related.

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Launching Apollo: Behind the Scenes of Our Data-Driven Redesign

June 25, 2015 in Blog. 7 Comments

Every now and then, website owners get an “itch” — an unignorable urge to redesign their site. Maybe they think they’re falling behind on current trends, or maybe they just don’t like their layout or theme as much as they once did. So they start over, change things until they’re satisfied… and then wonder why their customers don’t seem excited by the updates.

It’s one thing to want to redesign your website, but it’s another thing entirely to need a redesign. That itch strikes us all, but it’s crucial to only scratch it when you have data to support your desires. That data can come in the form of anything from visitor comments to website analytics, but it’s what you need to make smart decisions that will increase your conversion rates while decreasing bounce and exit rates.

Today, we launched a redesign codenamed “Project Apollo,” a data-driven rethinking of our WooCommerce landing page and the launch of our new audience-specific pages, WooCommerce Meetups, Download, and Extensions overview pages. It’s also another step in the direction of creating a beautifully-designed site that is primed for our upcoming responsive redesign.

We’d like to take you behind the scenes to show you how we used customer data to guide our redesign process, and offer some important takeaways for your own future redesigns or website updates. Keep reading for more!

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How to Personalize Your Site’s Content for Members

June 24, 2015 in Blog. 3 Comments

If you’ve recently picked up a copy of WooCommerce Memberships, or are thinking about creating memberships for your online store or website, your head’s likely packed to the brim with ideas for delighting your members. Exclusive content, special deals, emails, discounts… it’s enough to make anyone excited about signing up.

The thing is, creating delight doesn’t always have to come in the form of a 15% off coupon code. In fact, it’s much easier (and perhaps more cost-effective) to accomplish this for your members. How? Through personalization.

Personalizing your content for members can lead to increased conversions, feelings of happiness and goodwill, and the reassurance that those who have signed up are exactly where they need to be. Personalized content can also help you keep your members subscribing continuously, and motivate non-members to opt in to get the highly specialized perks offered to each membership tier.

Curious about personalization? Great! We’ve got some ideas for you, so read on to learn a bit more about why personal content is so important, and to discover a few ways you can implement it for yourself.

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7 Ideas for Members-Only Content You Can Monetize

June 23, 2015 in Blog, How to sell online. 3 Comments

Now that we’ve released WooCommerce Memberships, you might be bursting with ideas for creating a members-only section in your store or website. Or perhaps you want to have a dozen fantastic ideas that you simply can’t wait to implement… but nothing’s coming to you yet, and you need a helping hand to see how members-only content can benefit your store and make you more money.

A memberships program is one of the best ways you can monetize specific products, content, and areas of your store or website. Although you can certainly give away access for free, some store owners will find that they greatly benefit from adding paid memberships — both because their customers love being part of an exclusive group, and because it can generate additional revenue without very much extra work.

If you’re curious about memberships but aren’t sure how to make them work for your store, or already have a membership program in place and are searching for some additional ideas, today’s post is just for you. Let’s take a look at seven unique ideas for members-only content that, with the right motivation, will increase both your signups and recurring revenue.

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Which Social Media Networks Are Right for Your Brand?

June 19, 2015 in Blog. 2 Comments

If you’re new to the world of eCommerce, chances are pretty good that you’ve at least considered creating one or more social media profiles for your brand. But social media networking isn’t as simple as it used to be just a few years ago, and if you think a Facebook Page is all you need to reach your customers… well, you might be in for a surprise.

Picking the right place to connect with your followers, fans, and customers isn’t easy, though. There are a ton of possibilities. Each network has its own perks and perils, not to mention guidelines to follow. And you’re probably worried about making mistakes or wasting your time, especially if your new business is small or has a limited number of resources available.

Today, we’re going to talk about how to decide which social media platforms are the right fit for marketing your eCommerce business. We’ll cover why it’s so important to choose carefully, and then look closely at major platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and more so you can evaluate whether or not they’re a good fit for you.

Ready? Let’s get social!

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Introducing WooCommerce Memberships

June 17, 2015 in Blog, Product news. 69 Comments

As a store owner, you might want to limit certain products, pages, or pieces of content to specific groups of visitors or customers. You might want to restrict certain physical or digital items to customers who sign up or subscribe, or only give rewards in the form of content or products to those who belong to a special group. Yes? Now you can with ease.

Today we’re happy to announce the much-anticipated release of WooCommerce Memberships. This brand new extension allows you to create and maintain multiple membership tiers on your WooCommerce site, and offer exclusive content or products to your members.

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Intrigued? Let’s take a closer look at how WooCommerce Memberships works, and explore a few of the ways you can use it in your store.

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How Your Store Can Benefit from Subscriptions

June 16, 2015 in Blog, How to sell online. 3 Comments

Subscription-based businesses seem to be all the rage right now. There are delivery services for everything from coffee to diapers, websites that promise to send you carefully curated fashion pieces you’ll love, and subscription-only sites for online education. These businesses have picked up on one important thing: customers don’t just like getting deliveries. They like getting deliveries that make their lives easier.

Even if you operate a traditional, straightforward eCommerce website that’s been running like clockwork for years, you too can shake things up and create a new revenue stream by tapping into the same theory as these businesses. No matter what you sell, ship, and deliver to customers, you can create a subscription service that offers plenty of benefits to your customers… and to you!

Let’s take a look at how your store can benefit from offering subscriptions, no matter how big or small they are, and some tips to keep in mind if you choose to implement them.

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How to Build a Development Business by Adding WooCommerce Skills

June 15, 2015 in Blog. 6 Comments

Are you a freelance developer who is interested in starting your own business, but isn’t sure how? Or are you working for a small agency that wants to expand its eCommerce development offerings so you can take on additional clients? If so, we’ve got just the thing for you.

Thanks to our Educational Partners, we’re able to offer you handpicked resources to learn WordPress, WooCommerce, and the valuable development skills you need to expand your offerings to potential clients. Taking any one of their courses will allow you to build a bonafide development business based on WooCommerce, the fastest-growing eCommerce platform online that your clients will love.

Curious to know more? Keep reading to learn about the benefits of building a development business with WooCommerce, and to learn about one freelancer who used online education to dramatically improve his skills and take on new clients.

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How to Scale Your Store’s Pinterest Strategy

June 12, 2015 in Blog. 4 Comments

So you’ve created a Pinterest account for your online store. By this point, you might have a hundred or so followers, and you’ve likely been able to attribute a few sales back to your boards or user repins. Things are good with Pinterest… but they could be better, and you want a bigger piece of the pie.

If you’ve heard about the incredible potential that Pinterest has for brands, and want to better tap into this network’s 47 million monthly active users, it’s time to scale your strategy. Successfully using Pinterest to attract new customers is going to mean doing much more than pinning beautiful photos and curating similar content into cleverly-named boards. Luckily, these new strategies won’t take up too much of your time outside of some initial setup, and have been shown to have incredible results for some brands just like yours.

If you’re thinking about taking your Pinterest activity to the next level, read on to get some advice on how you can scale your strategy, attract more customers, and make better use of your pins to drive more profit with this incredible social media network.

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A Beginner’s Guide to Using Facebook Remarketing for eCommerce

June 10, 2015 in Blog. 6 Comments

Once a shopper has left your store, you might think there’s no way to get them to return. Either their mind’s made up and they’re never coming back, or they’ve gotten distracted and have forgotten about you completely. All hope is lost.

Or is it?

Remarketing with Facebook is one of the fastest and most cost-effective ways to reclaim lost clicks and conversions. It allows eCommerce website owners to directly reach shoppers who have visited their store, viewed specific pages, or abandoned their carts. And according to research, remarketing ads sport a response rate up to 400% higher than non-targeted advertising.

If you’ve long been curious about how to retarget your visitors using Facebook ads, we’re here to help. Today we’re going to offer you a crash course in setting up your first remarketing ad, from visiting Facebook’s Ads Manager for the very first time to creating an ad that will help drive shoppers back to your website.

Ready to learn how to reach your customers with targeted Facebook ads? Let’s get started!

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The Most Important Features of an eCommerce Platform

June 8, 2015 in Blog, How to sell online. 4 Comments

So you want to start an eCommerce business. You may be feeling a mixture of emotions at this point: excitement, apprehension, impatience… and confusion.

The first few decisions that new store owners make are crucial: what to name their new business, where to host their store, and so on. One such decision — and one of the most confusing — is which eCommerce platform should power their store.

With so many platforms to choose from, and countless features and functions available, the sheer number of choices is bound to get overwhelming. It’s also sometimes hard to tell whether or not the platform you’re looking at can offer you the functionality you want, or if it will properly scale or even be cost-effective as your store grows.

Today, we’re going to look at some of the most important features an eCommerce platform should have. This list will help you evaluate the platforms you’re considering along with common business goals, and help you decide whether or not it offers what you need to get started and grow your business.

Let’s get started by talking about how you can first find eCommerce platforms, and evaluate them using the criteria we’ll establish here.

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The Month in WordPress: May 2015

June 4, 2015 in Blog. 3 Comments

May has, yet again, been a fairly busy month for WordPress. The biggest news, for us internally as well as for the community as a whole, has most definitely been our acquisition by Automattic and everything that entails.

There’s no need to go over all of that again, of course, although we’re always listening if you have additional comments, suggestions, or feedback you’d like to share. In the meantime, let’s move on to everything else that has been going on this past month.

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How to Get Started with Dropshipping

June 3, 2015 in Blog, How to sell online. 7 Comments

Dropshipping is a fulfillment method that’s becoming more popular — but it’s not just for large businesses. Thousands of people run successful online marketplaces that utilize it.

Anyone with an Internet connection and a few hours a week can easily get started with dropshipping. Whether you’re new to the world of eCommerce or an established retailer looking to add to your product catalog, dropshipping can play a role in your business.

Today, we’ll go over what dropshipping is, and what types of businesses benefit the most from it. We’ll also talk about the product and market research process, how to find reliable dropship suppliers, and what you should know about order fulfillment and customer service.

Let’s get started!

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Introducing the New WooThemes Support System

June 2, 2015 in Blog. 22 Comments

Over the years, we have improved our support system countless times. There have been many, many, many, many revisions to how we package and provide support to you, our dear customers.

But it’s not because we’re crazy or want to drive you crazy. It’s because here at WooThemes, our ultimate, defining purpose is to provide you with the best experience possible.

We don’t want you to have a great experience only when you purchase your first product or enter your billing details. We don’t want you to have a great experience only when you’re browsing our extensive catalog or activating your license. We want every single interaction you have with us and our products to be positive. In a few words — we want you to be happy.

With that in mind, we’re excited to bring you our new, easier-to-use support system. You can watch a quick video walkthrough below, or read on to learn more about the motivation behind it and some of the new features we’ve included.


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The Store Owner’s Practical Guide to Being Search Engine Friendly

May 29, 2015 in Blog, How to sell online. 5 Comments

There are hundreds of guides out there on the topic of search engine optimization. From beginner’s guides that aim to get you started from scratch to more advanced guides that talk about complicated-sounding topics like .htaccess files and server log analysis, they all promise to educate you on SEO so you can rank better and sell more.

The problem is, as a store owner, you only have so many hours in your day. You’ve got enough to worry about without throwing SEO into the mix. Guides that recommend investing an hour or two per day into copywriting, on-page optimization, link building, or content creation seem practical enough… but only if you can grow another head and an extra set of arms.

Rather than invest all your time and effort into additional forms of optimization — some of which may not even be practical for your niche or current growth stage — it’s best to shift your mindset to simply being search engine friendly at all times. By establishing basic SEO groundwork right up front, and creating best practices for your store that you follow for all changes and additions, you can drastically cut down on the amount of time you need to spend on future optimization.

This isn’t to say that additional SEO isn’t or won’t become necessary for your store. But by following this guide, you can be confident that your store is always optimized for search because it meets Google’s very basic best practices.

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