How to Build a Multivendor Marketplace with WooCommerce and WordPress

marketplace

Have you thought about creating a marketplace using WooCommerce? If so, then you probably know that there are several pieces that go into such an endeavor: the initial concept, finding vendors, creating and implementing the site and, of course, the marketing.

The technical piece can be overwhelming. Often you cannot find one plugin that does it all. But checking out the Dokan Multivendor plugin could get you on your way to creating that marketplace. It has a cool design. Its interface makes it easier to get this kind of site up and running. And through its modules, you have extended functionality at the tip of your fingers.

Watch this video or read on for our full overview.

The Complete Multivendor eCommerce Solution for WordPress and WooCommerce

Wizard Setup

The Store Setup is simple, allowing the shipping fee and the tax fee to go either to the vendor or the site admin.

wizard setup store

The options for selling in the Wizard let you set the commission and give you control over whether a new vendor can sell once they register and whether vendors can change their order status.

wizard setup selling

Next, the withdrawal options for your vendors:

wizard settings withdrawals

A couple of recommended features can be optionally added:

wizard recommended features

Setting Up the Dokan Multi-Vendor Plugin for WooCommerce

Before we dive into the settings of this plugin, since it is strictly integrated with WooCommerce, there are three functionalities that this plugin relies on.

  1. Payments
  2. Shipping
  3. Taxes

So let’s talk about settings. A few of these you may have set up when running the Wizard, but there are a lot more options.

Note that there will be additional settings added here as you enable modules that come with the Dokan plugin.

General Settings

There are some basic settings, including those from the Wizard, regarding who gets the shipping fees and taxes. Also, if your vendors have physical addresses, you can include those along with a Google map and their hours.

general setting

Selling Options

Some options here that let you decide how much access you want the vendor to have and, of course, to set the commission:

selling options settings

Withdraw Options

These are the same as you saw in the Wizard with the exception of a hiding the withdraw option.

withdraw options settings

Page Settings

This lets you choose which pages you want for the dashboard, my orders and terms and conditions.

page setting

Appearance

Here you can add a logo for the Wizard that walks your vendors through setup and four options for the store header template.

appearance setting

 

Email Verification

You can add email verification for users:

email verification settings

Social API

You can set it up so that users can register or log in to your marketplace using their social profiles like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

social api settings

Vendor Contact Form

This setting shows up as when I installed the plugin. It also recommended I use the weForms plugin that integrates with Dokan. I believe this is optional, but if you don’t have one in place, you might consider it to make your overall setup easier.

vendor contact form

There will be pages that will list your vendors, all status of withdrawals from your vendors, reports and refunds.

dokan dashboard

Announcements

In this screenshot of the vendor dashboard, you see an area called announcements. As the marketplace owner, you get the easy of staying in contact with your vendors with updates and other forms of communication. When creating announcements, you have the option of sending it to all vendors or specific vendors.

announcements to vendors

Tools

And three tools that are available:

tools

Marketplace Vendor Access and Dashboard

As vendors are added to your marketplace, they will have their own dashboard to access and manage on the front end. Under user settings in the back end, you will find all the information specific to the marketplace. As you can see here, you can override the commission for each vendor in your settings.

vendor user profile

Vendor List

You can access all your vendors here. And you can easily toggle their account status active or inactive.

vendor list

As you can see, on the WooCommerce My Account page, this is now an option for registration for both customers and vendors. This will also be the login page for the vendor.

If I select I am a vendor, it will ask for more information to register.

vendor login and registration

Once you click to register, you can go through the Wizard or go straight to your dashboard.

wizard for vendors

As an admin, you will need to approve the vendor before they go public on your site.

Vendor Dashboard

Once a vendor is logged in, they will be able to manage their account through the dashboard on the front end.

vendor dashboard

Vendor Products

Here will be a list of all their products with various data and filters. When a vendor has added a product, it will go into pending review until the admin has approved and published the product.

vendor products list

The vendor can easily add a new product anytime in this popup window:

vendor add new product

Once you create the product and click on edit, you can add all the information that is available for any product in WooCommerce.

vendor product edit

Vendor Customer Orders

Vendors can view any orders and their status:

vendor orders

Vendor Coupons

Vendors can create coupons, which are listed here:

vendor coupons

Vendor Reports

You have several options for reports that vendors can access, including sales by the day, top selling products, top earning products and a statement.

vendor reports

Vendor Product Reviews

All reviews associated with a vendor’s product are displayed here:

vendor product reviews

Vendor Withdrawals

Vendors can see the status of their account, request a withdrawal if available and see approved and cancelled requests.

vendor withdrawals

Vendor Settings

Vendors can access several other settings:

Store – Here they can add store information.

Vendor settings store

Payment – The vendor can set up how they want to receive payments/withdrawals from you.

vendor payment settings

Shipping – Vendors can also control the shipping:

vendor shipping settings

And there is the option to use a previous shipping:

vendor use previous shipping

Social Profile – Vendors can add their social connections as well.

vendor social profiles

Store SEO – And vendors can add information to boost their store’s SEO (search engine optimization).

vendor store seo

Vendor Store Page

Depending on what information is added to their account through the settings, each vendor will have a page on the site created just for them.

vendor store page

Conversion Tracking for WooCommerce

When running the Wizard, you have the option of installing a plugin called WooCommerce Conversion Tracking. This is a free version and they also have a premium version. This is a screenshot of the free version activated:

woocommerce conversion tracking

Extending Your Marketplace

There are several modules that come with the premium version of Dokan that you can add as needed. There are some great options that will cover just about any aspect of a marketplace.

In order to keep this post an overview, we will be writing some additional posts down the road on some of this added functionality.

dokan modules

The Dokan Theme

Dokan has a free theme that works seamlessly with its plugin, as well as several third-party, Dokan-compatble themes on their site.

dokan theme

This was a basic overview and there is a lot more this plugin offers. If you are looking to build a marketplace with WooCommerce, I strongly recommend the Dokan Multivendor plugin for WooCommerce.

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When starting your marketplace, it’s also a good idea to give some serious  thought to which hosting platform you choose. You want to make sure you get some secure, fast and reliable. Liquid Web Managed WooCommerce Hosting has a Marketplace Plan that not only gives you exactly what you need, but also includes the Dokan plugin.

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