WooCommerce is one of the world’s most popular online store builders. This free, open source plugin comes with all the essentials for setting up an eCommerce venture, and it can be installed on any self-hosted WordPress website.
WooCommerce adds basic retail functions to any compatible WordPress theme, but online entrepreneurs can also install a WooCommerce theme designed to make the most of the plugin’s many features for showcasing all kinds of products and services. Here’s a look at five of the best WooCommerce themes for creating an attractive and fully functional online shop on your WordPress website.
WooCommerce and WordPress: How Does It Work?
More people now use online shopping than traditional retail stores, and that number continues to grow, which is exactly why it’s a great idea to get started with WooCommerce. Today, just about anyone can create a virtual storefront for selling all kinds of physical products, digital downloads, subscriptions, and services. Large hosted eCommerce platforms like Shopify and BigCommerce provide space and resources for setting up your online store, but customization options can be limited, and if the site runs into problems or goes down, so does your store.
Building your store with WordPress avoids many of the problems associated with setting up a store on a third-party host. You’ll need to arrange your own domain name and account with a web hosting provider, but WordPress is free to install and customize as you like. The basic WordPress source code contains all the elements for a generic website, but you control its appearance and functions with a wide range of themes and plugins – additional bits of code that can be installed into the WordPress source code to add additional functions to your site.
WooCommerce is one of those plugins. Install it for free from the WordPress Plugin Directory on your site’s admin dashboard, and it adds a set of eCommerce related functions to your existing WordPress site, such as product display pages, shopping carts, and payment gateways. These features are integrated into your site’s theme so that they display with the theme’s overall look and layout – but your current theme might not support all the WooCommerce features and functions that go along with a dedicated theme designed with WooCommerce in mind.
What to Look for in a WooCommerce Theme
WooCommerce themes are available primarily through third-party developers with WordPress experience, although some WooCommerce-friendly themes are also available from the official WordPress Theme Directory. If you’re thinking of switching out your current theme with a WooCommerce focused premium theme, it’s important to keep not only your own goals in mind but also the experience potential customers will have on your eCommerce website.
The best WooCommerce theme for your WordPress site is the one that looks good, reflects your brand, and offers your visitors the best shopping experience possible. To achieve those goals, look for a theme that includes:
- A clean, uncluttered design
Your theme should be customizable to reflect the look of your brand, but also make it easy for visitors to find what they need and contact you for questions and issues. A quality WooCommerce theme should showcase your products with minimal distractions.
- Mobile responsive
A majority of online shopping is done from mobile devices, which is exactly why you need a mobile responsive website. A quality WooCommerce theme should be responsive and display on devices of all sizes.
- Compatibility with other plugins
The functions of WooCommerce can be extended in a variety of ways with WooCommerce extensions – additional pieces of code that give your eCommerce website a variety of highly specific functions. Your WordPress site may need other plugins too, and a good WooCommerce theme should support the other plugins that add the functions you need.
- Social media integration
A number of free and premium plugins can add social media functionality in a variety of forms to your WordPress site, but quality WooCommerce themes and compatible plugins should offer features that integrate your site and product displays into your preferred social media sites.
- Easy navigation and search functions
The best WooCommerce themes also include user-friendly navigation to provide your customers with the best experience in your eCommerce store. This can include options for menu placement, easy to find search bars, and other navigation aids.
Quality WordPress themes are available from a variety of online asset marketplaces and third-party developers. Some WooCommerce themes are free, but premium themes provide full support and all available features at a variety of prices ranging from less than $50 to hundreds of dollars. Here’s a look at five of the best for storefronts of all kinds.
This premium WooCommerce theme from ThemeForest features a trendy flat design that can be fully customized to suit your brand. Flatsome has a clean layout with a featured offer section and multiple product page layouts. This theme includes a custom page builder and can be translated into multiple languages for a global reach.
Shopkeeper is a fully responsive premium theme from Envato Marketplace that can be customized with multiple product pages and blog layouts for a variety of different eCommerce purposes. Shopkeeper comes with YouTube video support for its product galleries and is compatible with Gutenberg, the new page builder and text editor included in the latest version of WordPress.
Artcraft is a quality premium theme from Template Monster for art, craft, and boutique storefronts. This handmade theme features a clean, responsive design and easy navigation with a wide range of page layouts. Artcraft is compatible with Elementor, a visual WordPress page builder with drag and drop functionality for creating custom pages.
Divi is a fully responsive, versatile general WordPress theme that integrates well with WooCommerce. The Divi builder includes multiple page layouts and extensive social media integration that fully supports the basic WooCommerce plugin features. This premium theme also includes clean, intuitive navigation and can be translated into 32 languages.
With multiple demos and layout options, Legenda from Theme Forest can be customized for a variety of niches and product types such as clothing, sporting goods, or toys. Legenda comes with a visual page builder for creating individual pages and a set of clean dropdown menus for easy navigation. Legenda also includes multiple language support and a clean black and white design.
WooCommerce can add essential eCommerce features to any WordPress site, but a premium WordPress theme designed with WooCommerce in mind can support all its features and functions – and make your online storefront look its best.