Create Your Online Ecommerce Store with WooCommerce and WordPress – 2018
In this tutorial, I’m going to show you a step-by-step fast and easy way to start your own online store.
But Why You Should Create Your Online Ecommerce Store with WooCommerce and WordPress, Considering The Cons of Using Amazon and eBay?
I think they are amazing selling platforms. All you need to do is list your items on there and then they will do the marketing for you.
But there are downsides as well.
With Amazon and eBay you have huge price competition, high fees and you also have limited ability to do upsells and email marketing to your customers.
Having your own store also means that you can sell items that are prohibited.
For example, I have a friend that’s doing over 10 million dollars a year selling e-cigarettes.
E-cigarettes are banned on Amazon and there are other things that you can also do.
In my next article, I’m actually going to be showing you a sneaky trick for how you can dropship items in your own store that you would not be able to do on Amazon or Ebay.
I’m not going to lie. Creating your own store definitely has a learning curve. But it’s well worth it for the huge profits that you can earn.
To make it as easy for you as possible, I’m going to tell you the step-by-step instructions that you need to create your own online store.
Let’s Take a Look at the Online Store That We’re Going to Create
I think you’re going to be surprised just how easy it is. Let me give you a sneak peek at the store that we are going to create.
I just want to give you a quick overview of what we’re going to create today. So this here is the store I’m going to take you through step by step.
As you can see, we’ve got a custom logo, we’ve got a menu, we’ve got a cart, got a checkout, we’ve got an area where people can add their account or can create an account with our store.
If we scroll down the page here you can see we’ve got a banner for our home page, we’ve got some content on our home page. We’ve got a list of the recent products that we added to our store.
I’ll show you what the different product listings look like for the different items that we’ve added. So if we click on this one here:
You can see that we’ve got a big feature image, we’ve got a gallery of images and if you select an image you can get it, it pops up and you can take a look at a bigger version of the image.
What are Product Description, Product Variations and Proceed to Checkout page?
So looks really professional. We’ve got a title, you can substitute this item to be on sale and I’ll show you exactly how I’ve done that. I’ve added in a bunch of content for this that takes me to it.
I’m optimized for search engines and I added on a bunch of content for it here. I’ll show you how to edit that content.
And something I’ve added that’s really cool is that you can come here and you can select the Product Variation of this mug so you can see by black, red, green or yellow.
So if we select black, pretending that we’re a customer, we’re going to order this. We just click Add to Cart.
And then you can see we can just click View Cart here. I’m going to show you how easy it is for your customer to Checkout.
So once they come here they can add other items to their cart. But let’s say they just want this. They can come and click Proceed to Checkout.
And then, as you’ll be able to see, what we’ve got to do here is Create An Account With Us.
So that we can keep the contact details and remark it to them later again. And once they’ve done that, they can proceed to PayPal.
When they proceed to PayPal, they’ll be able to pay with their credit cards whether or not the customer has a PayPal account.
They can use PayPal to pay with their credit card regardless and the great thing about PayPal is that you get paid immediately which makes this a really great option if you want to dropship items.
So that is the sneak peek at the store that we are going to be building.
My 4 Steps for Building Your Own Online Store
Let’s get started on the four step process to building your own online store.
- Registering your hosting and your domain name.
- Installing WordPress.
- Installing our e-commerce theme.
- Customizing our own store.
So we’re going to be doing things like adding a logo, adding products on the home page and if any of this sounds scary, don’t worry because it isn’t!
In fact, if you want you can even follow the steps from this tutorial and build your store while I’m building mine. So let’s get started.
Step 1: Registering your Hosting and your Domain Name
But why do I need a Domain Name?
For those of you that don’t know, a domain is a unique URL address to your website. It’s very similar to an offline address.
Offline you may have an office located at 155 Jackson’s Road. If someone goes to 155 Jackson’s Road, they’ll find your office.
In other words, your domain (or domain name) is your business’s online address and it’s how people find your business’s website on the Internet.
Google.com is Google’s domain name. If you were to type in
Google.com into your browser’s address bar, you would land on Google’s website.
And why do I need a Web Hosting service?
And for those of you that don’t know, web hosting is a service that lets you store your website’s files online.
Think of web hosting as the same as renting out an empty office. You need an empty office to store your furniture, but the office comes unfurnished.
While to build your own online store, you’re going to need to upload and store some files online. You’re going to need to upload your images and your products data and things like that.
Luckily, most of what you need to do has already been done for you and the rest of the stuff can be set up with a few clicks.
I’m going to be showing you exactly how to do this and exactly what you need to upload.
Now, to get both our domain and our webhosting, we’re going to be using one of my favorite services online which is called iPage.
I really like iPage because they are really simple and easy to use. And most importantly they’re very competitively priced. You can get your own domain and webhosting for just $1.99.
I’m going to switch back to my computer now and show you the step-by-step instructions on how to setup your domain and webhosting with iPage.
Setting up domain and web hosting with iPage
So I’m here at iPage. Now, iPage is the web hosting that I use and I personally recommend because it’s really cheap to get started.
They also include a free domain registration which makes it super simple and easy for people that have never opened an online website before, especially an online store before.
Now, you can get your own iPage hosting directly from this tutorial and I want to note that there is a link for this. I’m only recommending it because of the fact that I personally use iPage and I love it.
So let’s get started. You click Sign Up Now and it’s going to load up. So what you want to do is you want to come up here and register a new domain.
Now, if you already got a domain, you can use your own one, but for this example, I’m going to be creating a new one.
For our training purposes, I’m going to be creating
brewedtreats.com and click on the Check Availability button because I’m going to make a ecommerce store designed around coffee items.
Enter Billing and Contact Information
So it’s got our domain name which is exactly what we want. Now what you need to do is you want to fill in this Contact Information.
This contact information is quite private, so after I fill it out, you can also come down here to Payment Information.
And for payment you can select to pay with your credit card or with PayPal. I’m personally going to be paying with my credit card, but you could also do it through PayPal.
I filled on my data. Now one thing you’re gonna notice is that they’re going to have this total of $103.60.
That’s because they’ve included a bunch of options that you don’t need.
Skip the Upsells for even cheaper web hosting service
First option they’ve included here is to Backup Your Site Daily. Honestly speaking, you can back up your site by yourself if you like. And I’ve got other services to do that for me.
I would definitely uncheck this and it’s going to drop the price down a lot.
The other thing they do is have this thing Advanced Site Protection and Performance Accelerator. You definitely don’t need this. You can uncheck this as well and then if you come here, you’ll see that they’ve got Domain Privacy set up.
I personally really like domain privacy. I usually include it, but it’s entirely up to you and if you’re looking to cut costs, just uncheck the box.
The final thing that they do, it’s a little sneaky – they include two years in your hosting plan. If you’re just starting out and you want to just try this, then I’d recommend that you switch this to be one year.
Then if we come down, you’ll see that your total is now $23.88.
It’s a huge saving, so come and click Check Out.
That’s just going to register my account for me. Perfect!
This page here is entirely optional.
You don’t need to fill it out. It’ll just click No Thanks and then just go to the next page.
They’re trying to upsell you some more. It’s one of the things that you get like if you’re going to be getting really cheap web hosting like I’m showing you, they’re going to try to upsell you on all sorts of things that you don’t need.
Just skip on by and click No Thanks. We don’t want those, we just want our $23.88 web hosting and a domain name. Once you’ve done all that, you’re finished.
Congratulations! You now have your hosting and your domain name and it’s just setting it up now.
Log in to Your Newly Created Hosting Account
It’s time for us just to log into our account.
And we just need to create our account here.
You’re going to need to set a password to get into your hosting account.
I would recommend that you make this very strong. I have an app called LastPass which does that for me.
So make sure that you have a strong password and do write it down somewhere.
You’re going to have to create a security question and then give a security answer. So make sure that it’s legitimate because of the fact that if you ever have prompting into account it’s going to be very important that you can answer your security question.
And you can enter in your referral information. You can say that you came here from
wpbackend.com. That’s absolutely fine but you definitely don’t have to.
Then you’re just going to click I agree to the Terms of Service because this information is obviously very private.
So once I’m finished, I’m going to click on Save and Continue and show you what it’s like on the next page.
And that’s it! Once you setup a password, you are done. Make sure that you write that password down somewhere so that you’ve got it safe.
Now, we’re going to need to be in this Control Panel for Step Two – Installing WordPress.
So just stay in it.
Just one thing to keep a note is that if you come to the email account that you set up your iPage hosting with, they’re going to have given you a really important email over here.
This email is going to contain your admin username to be able to log in to your web hosting account.
So keep that in mind that your admin username has been sent to you and this has been included in this email.
The password that you setup earlier is going to be the password that you use to also log in to your Control Panel.
Step 2: Installing WordPress
For those of you that don’t know, WordPress is a powerful but easy to use website creation tool.
And first of all, it is absolutely FREE!
When WordPress was first created, it was set up to create blogs, but it is now expanded and you can use it to create lots of different types of websites such as e-commerce stores.
With iPage it is super easy to install WordPress on your new webhosting and domain. Let me switch back to my computer and show you exactly how to do this.
Install WordPress on iPage
I’m going to show you how to install WordPress on your new hosting.
So you want to click on the Website section of your iPage Control Panel and then you want to click on WordPress. And we’ll just open up WordPress now.
Here they’re going to say Hey we’ll do it for you and we’ll charge you a bunch for it. You really really don’t need them to do that at all.
You can do it for absolutely FREE. So just click on Install. It’s just loading it now.
First thing you’re gonna need to do is you’re going to need to select the domain that you would like to install WordPress on.
Over here you want to leave this field called ‘directory‘ blank. As you can see I haven’t actually typed anything in here. You want to leave this entirely blank.
So then you click on Check Domain name and it’s just going to make sure that there’s no WordPress already installed for that domain. And it’s going to come out that there is not because this is a fresh domain name.
Alright, so it says there are some files that need to be overwritten. They’re just files that iPage has already installed on it.
So we just need to click on Continue.
Now we just need to click on I have read the terms and conditions of the GPLv2.
You don’t need to see the Advanced Options. And then click Install Now.
WordPress is now going to be installed for you automatically which is awesome!
You can see at the top here the bar is moving which is letting us know that WordPress is currently being installed and they’re going to try to sell you a bunch of themes. We do not need these themes because we are going to be using a free theme that I’m going to show you exactly how to get.
Our installation is done.
Log in to your WordPress Site
Now you can test if your install was successful by just opening a new tab and then typing in your domain name.
So our domain name is
brewedtreats.com and this nested page here is going to be showing up telling us that our installation of WordPress was successful.
All that’s left is for us to come in and login.
So click Admin Login and it’s going to take you to your admin login screen.
Now you’re going to need your username and your password. Note that these username and password are not the same as the username and password for your iPage account.
Luckily this is really easy to get. If you come over to the email that you signed up with your domain name and hosting, you’re going to be sent the login details.
So I’m just going to grab my password and as you can see my username is going to be my email address. Now I have my WordPress password. The way that I got it was here I clicked on View Password:
And then it took me to this page here and then what I had to do was come and click on this button here and it showed me my login credentials.
So that’s how you get your password.
Then we come back again here to our login page.
And we will type in my email address for username and then we will enter in the password that we got earlier. Then we will log in and it’s going to take me to my account screen which is where we need to be for step 3 where we will install our e-commerce theme.
Step 3: Installing our e-commerce theme
Here we are inside our Dashboard.
All right, we have installed WordPress on our new webhosting and domain. That’s going to make creating our online store super easy to turn our website into an online store. We’re going to be using what is called a plugin.
A plugin is a piece of software that we can install on WordPress. Think of a plugin like an upgrade. We’re going to be upgrading WordPress to give it new features and these new features are going to make it really easy for us to create a new online store.
Let me show you how to get it and also show you how to install it.
The first thing we’re going to do is we’re going to go and install a plugin.
So we’re going to go to Plugins and click Add New.
What we want to do is to search for the WooCommerce plugin. So go here to Search Plugins and type in WooCommerce.
And then click Install.
Now what we want to do is to click Activate plugin and now WooCommerce is set up.
Here you could be going through and setting up the different settings, but I’m going to show you how to do that later. So for now click Not right now and we’re back in the Dashboard.
Install Mystile theme for your site
Now, we want to go and find our theme for WooCommerce. This theme is going to make our website look really cool.
I’ll show you what our current website looks right now.
The website does not look like a store. It looks more like a blog, so we want to find what’s called a theme which will make our website look nice.
I’ve got a free theme that I recommend which is called Mystile.
It is absolutely free. To download it for free, just go down the page here and click Add to Cart.
I know Add to Cart indicates that it’s going to cost you money, but I promise you this is not going to cost you a single thing.
As you can see the total is $0. All you want to do is go and click Checkout Now.
Create a WooThemes Account
Cool! So now we need to log in to either your WooThemes account or you need to create one. Creating account is really easy. I’ll show you how to do it.
You just go in here and fill in your first name, your last name, your email address, you have to talk about like how you can use the products, your address, your town, city, your country and your zip code.
I would recommend that you uncheck the Sign me up box, so that you don’t get sent emails from them and then you’ll have an account.
So I’ve filled up my information and one thing I should also note is that you need to include an account name and account password.
Once you fill out the information, just go and click on Purchase and there we go.
Once you have filled out your account and you click Purchase you’ll come here.
Download Mystile theme and install it on your site
On this screen here we are able to Download the store for free. So go and click Download.
It is downloading to my computer right now. Once downloaded, I want to install it on my website.
So come back to your Dashboard.
What you need to do is to go to Appearance and then click on Themes.
On this page here click on Upload because we’re going to upload Mystile to our website.
Now go down here and click the Choose File button.
Now you’re going to need to find were you downloaded Mystile to your computer. So I’ve found it and I click it and I’m going to click Open and then I’m going to click Install Now.
Down below here you can see that it is currently uploading.
Excellent! It has now successfully installed the theme. Now we need to just click Activate.
Perfect! Mystile has been installed and activated on our website.
Let’s move on to the next step.
Step 4: Customizing our Ecommerce store
So now we’re going to customize our store.
I’m going to teach you how to add and customize the following:
1. Your store options such as your shipping, your payment gateway and your currency.
2. The products you are going to sell.
3. How to add a custom homepage.
4. How to add a custom logo.
5. How to add a custom menu.
Set up the important things on your store such as your shipping, your payment gateway and your currency
So now it’s time to set up the important settings on our store. Just go to your Dashboard and click Run the setup wizard.
Let’s click Let’s go on this page here.
They’re just telling you that you’re going to need some essential pages. Obviously for your store to work you’re going to need to have a Shop page.
You’ll need to have a Cart, you’re going to need to have a Checkout, you’re going to have to have a My Account page. So these are going to be automatically created for you by WooCommerce.
But don’t worry because you can always edit these yourself. You can control which pages are shown in your dashboard. So we’re just going to click Continue to go on to the next step.
Store Locale Setup
So now when you setup our currency and things like that.
My store is going to be based in Auckland, New Zealand even though I’m going to be aiming my products worldwide. Even though I’m going to be having my store technically based in New Zealand because I’m based in Auckland, I’ll be working with US dollars. That’s because I’m going to be aiming most or mostly at people in the United States thanks to dropshipping.
But it’s entirely up to you. So click Continue.
Shipping & Tax Setup
Here you can set up your taxes. I’m based in New Zealand and I’m going to be selling most to the people outside of New Zealand. So I will not have any sales tax obligations.
I am personally not going to be shipping the physical goods to my customers because I’m going to be drop shipping. So I’m going to keep this untouched, but again, it would be entirely up to you.
And then you click Continue.
Payment Methods Setup
Here you select how you’re going to be accepting your payments.
Now as you can see, you can accept payments with PayPal and this is what I would recommend, because it allows you get your money very fast and basically instantly.
So what you will need to enter your PayPal address into this box here.
You can also select to accept offline payments. So you could offer payments through cheque (Cheque Payments) or Cash on Delivery or through a Bank Transfer (BACS).
I would probably recommend that you only select PayPal unless perhaps if you’ve got an eBay store where you’re relisting the same items that you’re selling on there on your own website. And if you normally accept Cash on Delivery or Bank Transfers with that and you could accept that here.
Now I’m going to enter in my PayPal and then once I’m done I’m going to be clicking Continue. Then I will show you what it’s like on the other side.
Your WooCommerce Store is Ready!
This is the page that you get sent to after that.
We want to click on Return to the WordPress Dashboard because we’re going to go ahead and move on to the next thing.