Many moons ago at kc web design kent we used to create large, bespoke e-commerce systems. kc web design kent created bespoke e-commerce systems like this because there weren’t that many good off-the-shelf e-commerce systems out there that could do the job. 10 years later and there are lots of great e-commerce systems such as Lemonstand, Magento and the subscription based services such as Shopify and Big Commerce. Although these systems are fantastic and each have their own pros and cons, today I’m going to concentrate on WordPress ecommerce plugins.
WordPress ecommerce plugins
Over the past few years at kc web design kent we’ve been doing more and more WordPress based website design and we’ve been keeping an eye on the WordPress ecommerce plugin market with interest. A few years ago creating an online shop with WordPress wasn’t an easy job but two plugins have now made the creation of e-commerce shops with WordPress a lot easier. The two main WordPress ecommerce contenders are WP E-commerce and WooCommerce.
After having used both Wordpress ecommerce plugins for an internal project here at kc web design kent (Designer Themes – WordPress themes for web designers!…more info on this coming very soon) we’ve had a good chance to evaluate both of these Wordpress ecommerce plugins. At first look it seemed like WP e-commerce was the favourite; it had a huge community, lots of additional plugins and seemed to be used on lots of good WordPress ecommerce websites. After installation though, it took a long time to get into the guts of it and get it to do the things we needed out of the box. It’s not that it wasn’t good, it’s just that a few things were missing that we needed and it didn’t feel ‘full’ enough for the complicated shop we were creating.
The Woocommerce WordPress ecommerce plugin, from the chaps at Woothemes, wasn’t on the top of my list to start with but after installing and then having the option to add dummy pages and shop data I was initially very impressed. The documentation is vast and we soon found we could do pretty much everything we needed straight away. The layout in WordPress for the shop admin is very nicely done, quite similar to WP e-commerce but it has a slightly different edge to it. Something about it feels a bit more intuitive and even though there seems to be more options and lots of different ways to deal with products it doesn’t make it feel complicated.
There’s not much between them but after using both Wordpress ecommerce plugins I have to lean towards Woocommerce and that’s what we’ve decided to use on our new secret project at kc web design kent. I’d recommend checking out both Wordpress ecommerce plugins though as a lot of it will be down to personal preference.