I’ve had several questions about selling on your WordPress blog, so it’s time for another post in our blogging series.
WordPress is the world’s most popular site-creation tool; with some “455 million sites that use WordPress” (Techjury.)
It’s no secret that I adore WordPress; I’ve used it since 2005. In those early days, it could take you an entire morning to tinker with config files and get online. Today, you can create a new WP website in your hosting account in a few seconds.
As site builders go, why is WP so popular? Simplicity is one reason. The other is plugins. By installing a few plugins you can turn your site into anything you choose, from an art gallery to an online news site, or an online store. WP is endlessly customizable, in function, as well as appearance.
But what if you want to sell via your website?
Your WordPress website: stress-free sales
Let’s look at what’s involved in ecommerce.
Basically, you need:
- Something to sell. Perhaps products, or services, such as writing services, or publishing services;
- A way to tell customers about your products, and enable them to buy;
- Delivery options;
- Customer contact options;
- Sales processing: a way to connect a payment processor.
The simplest way to sell something on a website is to use PayPal, or a similar payment system. You describe a product, and add PayPal button. When someone buys, you ship the product.
Although this bare-bones method is simple, it becomes challenging when sales increase.
Let’s look at some tips to help you to make sales from your WordPress blog.
1. Sell from your website, painlessly: what are you selling?
You can turn a WordPress blog into an online store, quite easily, and inexpensively. The WooCommerce plugin, for example, is essentially open source and free.
But… (there’s always a but) WooCommerce requires some experience to get it working for you. You’ll also need a suitable theme.
For simplicity, some WordPress users use Shopify or a similar ecommerce solution to sell, integrating it into WP. The benefits? Ecommerce made simple: all the bells and whistles you might want, added to your site simply.
Everything depends on what you’re selling, and whether your site is an online store.
If you don’t run an online store, choose plugins which do what you need. For example, I use the My Book Table plugin to sell my books. Sales are made on Amazon, or another book retailer.
2. Keep it simple, initially
For stress-free sales, ensure that your website is set up and working. Become familiar with your site’s backend, so that you can create pages and posts easily, and add plugins only as you need them.
Then start small. With the booming creator economy, many options exist to help you to make sales.
Check what others are using. For example, if you’ve set up an Etsy store, check how others are integrating their store with their website. Test the Etsy WordPress plugin to assess whether it works for you.
3. Advertising: choose an advertising plugin
Are you blogging for income? Millions of bloggers set up blogs and monetize them. However, with some 2.75 million blog posts published per day on WordPress alone, there’s a lot of content chasing advertising revenue.
There’s more than one way to make money however; some creators make six and seven figure incomes. Advertising plugins help. Most bloggers focus on the major advertising networks, like Google AdSense, eBay, and Amazon—but explore the many other networks too.
Of course, you don’t need to sell advertising space. Whatever you’re selling, plugins exist to help, and many are free. The free ones offer premium features for those bloggers who need more. Colorlib looks at nine plugins—check out the options.
Finally, remember WordPress’s huge popularity. As you develop skills, help others… And charge for it.
4. Experience with WordPress is valuable: you can charge for it
Your WordPress skills are worth money, especially skills relating to ecommerce. As your abilities grow, offer help to your clients.
Do more with your blog
I’ve been blogging for a couple of decades. Mostly, I’ve relied on blogging to promote my books and services. Contact me for advice on making the most of blogging and content in your small business.
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Copywriter and marketing pro Angela Booth maintains a busy copywriting and ghostwriting practice. Fascinated by online marketing, she wrote one of the first business books for internet marketing, published by Allen & Unwin. She’s been an enthusiastic blogger since the late 1990s.