Starting an Online Clothing Store with WooCommerce

djbaxter

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Starting an Online Clothing Store with WooCommerce
WooCommerce.com
Sept 5, 2019

1. Selecting a theme and customizing your site design.
After you’ve installed WordPress and logged in to your dashboard, you’ll need to choose a WordPress theme, which will play a role in the design of your site. There are a lot of options available, from free themes to paid themes, and they can vary in quality.

Here are a few things to consider when choosing an effective WordPress theme:
  • Does it integrate seamlessly with WooCommerce? A theme that’s built for WooCommerce makes the process of setting up your store and designing your site much easier. While there are some great premium options out there, WooCommerce does offer the free Storefront theme, which was built specifically for online stores. The Galleria child theme and the new Threads theme were both designed with clothing stores in mind.
  • Does it come from a reliable source? Make sure that you choose a theme from the WordPress repository or from an experienced, legitimate company. Doing a little research and checking theme reviews can save you a lot of time and frustration!
  • Does the theme load quickly? While there are a lot of ways to improve performance and load time yourself, choosing a theme that’s already optimized for speed starts you off on the right track.
  • Is it mobile friendly? Check the theme demos on a mobile device and look at the documentation to ensure that it looks just as good on phones and tablets as on your desktop.
  • Is it SEO-friendly? Read through the documentation to see if the developers built the theme with SEO in mind.
  • What functionality and features do you want? Make a list of the features you’re looking for in a website. Do you want a product slider on the home page? How about built-in FAQ support? While there are plugins you can add for additional functionality, it’s often easier if the theme already provides what you’re looking for.
Once you’ve chosen and installed your theme, it’s time to think about your website’s design. While your theme might have its own options and page builder, WordPress and WooCommerce offer easy ways to design your site however you’d like.

If you go to Appearance —> Customize, you’ll find settings that will allow you to upload a logo, change the colors and fonts used throughout your site, change the layout for WooCommerce pages, add custom CSS, and more.

The new Gutenberg editor allows you to build any page that you’d like through flexible blocks. Drag and drop headings, text, images, columns, videos, buttons, galleries, and more.

A great way to find design inspiration is to look at what other clothing stores are doing. Of course, it’s important to come up with your own design and not copy others’, but this is a good way to get an idea of design and layout options.

2. Choosing the pages on your site.
While the exact pages that you need will vary based on your business and audience, here are a few that work well for the clothing industry:
  • About. Use this opportunity to describe your mission and story.
  • FAQ. Answer the questions your customers ask all the time.
  • Collections. Separate clothes based on season, gender, style, and more.
  • Fit Guide. Describe how items fit, how customers can measure themselves, and the measurements for your clothes.
  • Stores. Do you also sell your products in retail locations? List those on this page.
  • Contact. Make sure your customers can reach you with questions or feedback.
  • Policies. Describe your return policies, exchange policies, etc. and describe how you use and protect customers’ data.
  • Lookbook. Feature real life people wearing your clothing and show how to pair items together to make cohesive outfits.
If you have an existing business, you may want to consider reaching out to your customers to find out what they wish was on your site. What information was hard to find or missing? This is a great way to learn the kind of pages that will connect with your customers.

3. Extending your store.
Think about additional functionality you might need or want on your store. What business model will you use to sell your products? How will you accept payments? Do you want shoppers to customize your clothes?

WooCommerce offers a variety of useful extensions that will help you create any store that you can envision! Here are a few that are particularly useful for fashion boutiques:
  • WooCommerce Subscriptions – Sell themed clothing subscription boxes or send clients a new pair of fun socks every month. Easily manage recurring payments.
  • Product Vendors – Allow different clothing designers to sell their products on your store and control commissions easily. Perfect for a multi-vendor marketplace!
  • WooCommerce Brands – Create, assign, and list product brands. Then, allow your customers to filter your clothes by brand.
  • Variation Swatches and Photos – Showcase color options for your clothes with visual, interactive image swatches.
  • Catalog Visibility Options – Only interested in selling your designs in a physical location? Use WooCommerce as a catalog and remove all checkout functionality.
  • Product Add-Ons – Allow your customers to request personalization, like text or graphics, to your t-shirts and other clothing. Offer gift wrapping and additional options.
  • Smart Coupons – Sell custom-designed gift cards and offer advanced discounts.
  • WooCommerce Dropshipping – Manage drop shipping and send automated order notifications to your suppliers.

Read more...
 

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