February 2015 – Ecommerce Roundup

Ecommerce Roundup

by Chris Klosowski

AZ WordPress

February 12, 2015

Other WP meetups:

1st Tue— Business of Web

2nd Thu—General, at Gangplank Chandler

4th Tue— Northwest Valley

4th Thu—Developers Meetup at Skyhook

Intros & Topic:  What e-commerce should I use?  “It depends.”

Presenter:  Chris Klosowski—Easy Digital Downloads

Every option supports Stripe.

Sub-topics:  What you need to look at for comparing various e-Commerce options.

Downloads—Woo has the most over 6 million; WP eCommerce nearly 3 million; EDD has 519,668; followed by Cart 66 Exchange and Shopp.

Extensions—add-ons for expanding options; Woo Commerce, EDD, WP eCommerce, followed by iThemes Exchange, Shopp and Cart66.

Themes—typically things are developed to work in common themes like 2014 and 2012.  Most all function well right out of the box; however, the caveat is some don’t “look” as nice with certain themes.

Mobile Apps—only two have mobile apps to access store information—EDD (iOS & Android); Woo (iOS).

Support—Woo, EDD, iThemes Exchange, Shopp have forum & tickets; WP eComm and Cart66: no forum, but they do have tickets; but all you can access the wp.org support forums.

Unit Tests—All have these tests except iThemes and Cart66; however, iThemes is working on it.

Shipping—already built in with more than just flat rate: Woo, WP, iThemes Exchange, and Cart66.  EDD still working on it; Shopp only has flat rate.

Recurring—All have them. These are good for subscriptions.

Commissions—for selling other people’s stuff; Woo, WP eCommerce and iThemes have this capability.

Licensing—Woo, EDD, and iThemes Exchange all have this; good for sites that sell software.

Choose the platform you use based on your needs.

Start with a staging environment to test the code or configuration before it goes live. Use a cheap hosting site or managed WP; check out the forums and do your research.

Taking Credit Cards:  Use Stripe; it is a cc processor AND purchase an SSL certificate; if you have customers that want to use cc’s but not PayPal.  There is a hand off in the background so it doesn’t look like the customer has left the site, but all cc info is handled off site. Site owners never see or can auto populate cc #s.

Most common problems seen at EDD:  PayPal IPN—sometimes fails on PayPal end. Fraud management; IP and zip code don’t match, extensions are built to find these. Charge backs = unauthorized payments.

What about refunds?  Have a really good refund policy on your site.  Also have a privacy policy and terms of service; and especially include 3rd party exclusions.

How about taxes?  All built into the plug-ins, but it is up to the site owner to know and input the taxes for each state.

Importing:  All have CSV imports.  There are plug-ins that will take a feature photo, but it doesn’t always work.

How to drive traffic?  Good content blogging; Helpscout does excellent product blogging; Optimizely for doing A-B testing (blue vs. green button); Schema.org will look at SEO, it is already built into the plug-ins.

Affiliates—referral payouts.  AffiliateWP plug-in is recommended and it is also good for driving traffic to the site.


Anyone know the max capacity for Events Manager & Business Directory?  Both are CPT (Custom Post Types—e.g.  Book  lists with custom fields for all the books’ details)

  • Akiba—back up system now available FREE for WP.
  • Google—do free security check on your account and you get 2 GB free on Google Drive.
  • Must Use Plugins—when you change themes all your short codes remain as long as they are in the “MU”.
  • Script Loader Tag—for Devs.


Drag & Drops are big now, “Be” is a new theme. Chris Diamond:


This theme is extremely versatile. $58. With various demo options.

Video, layered sliders.

You can make very different looking websites with this same theme.

Comes with Visual Composer and MuffinBuilder.

Visual Composer is better in case you change themes later, but both allow you to see what it looks like without going to preview.

When you use a map look for the snazzymaps.com for various colors/styles of maps and you can choose what you like and copy & paste the code for it.

Load speeds are 59 for mobile and 71 for pc, according to Google.

Updating is hairy unless you pay for the authorization code???

Cool thing:  Menu tabs don’t scroll, so when the user scrolls down they still have menu tab available without scrolling back up to the top.


NEXT MONTH: Open forum night is an Un-Conference style meetup.

APRIL:  Design

MAY: Zapier Integration

2 weeks from today is the very first DEV Meetup at Skyhook which will take place monthly.