eCommerce. For some it’s a scary word, a foreign word or simply misunderstood. Let’s talk about how you may already be part of the eCommerce world.
But don’t freak out. It may be that you only think of those big online stores when you hear the word eCommerce. Or you think it’s about selling products only.
Over the last few years here on the blog, we’ve been talking about eCommerce and selling stuff on your WordPress site, specifically WooCommerce. This is nothing new; we have been sharing this kind of content for several years. It was March of last year that we really did a deeper dive into WooCommerce on the site. And a bigger pivot last month.
What the $(#@^? is eCommerce?
The short definition:
Commercial transactions conducted electronically on the Internet.
Or as Wikipedia defines it:
eCommerce: Electronic commerce, commonly written as e-commerce or eCommerce, is the trading or facilitation of trading in products or services using computer networks, such as the Internet or online social networks. Electronic commerce draws on technologies such as mobile commerce, electronic funds transfer, supply chain management, Internet marketing, online transaction processing, electronic data interchange (EDI), inventory management systems, and automated data collection systems. Modern electronic commerce typically uses the World Wide Web for at least one part of the transaction’s life cycle although it may also use other technologies such as e-mail.
So if we take the middle ground on this, eCommerce is basically selling something online. And with WooCommerce, it falls under the mission of democratizing eCommerce.
A couple of years ago at a local WooCommerce meetup, I did a presentation on WooCommerce plugins, but it also touched on exactly what I’m saying on this post.
I talked about my desire to get into eCommerce early. Pre-WordPress, I even started a stock photo site. I struggled to wrap my brain around it because I was thinking only products. Little did I know that when I started using WooCommerce in late 2011, and ever since then, no matter what I sold online, I used some version of it. And in my presentation I went through all the ways I have used WooCommerce to sell stuff, aside from products.
- Web Design
- WordPress Consulting
- WordPress Coaching
- WordPress Training
- Online Courses
- Podcast Sponsorships
- Sponsored Posts
- Affiliate Marketing
It’s All About Selling
You may have an online store that sells products or you may sell a single eBook on your site. You might sell packages of the services on your site—or perhaps some online courses or memberships. You might offer booking services. Or maybe you sell tickets to workshops or other events. You may even have some affiliate links scattered around, or a few ads. Well, that too, my friends, is eCommerce. So if you are selling your products or services on your WordPress site, face it, you are part of the eCommerce world.
But It Goes Further than That
Think of every aspect I mentioned and all of the content, plugins and themes that are part of WooCommerce, even if they are not directly related. You may use a certain theme to sell something online. It wasn’t marketed as an WooCommerce theme, but it works. You need those plugins to help people subscribe to your site, share content via social media, and build forms so they can contact you. The list is endless.
Take, for example, our own history with podcasts. In them we have talked about everything from security to SEO, social media to inbound marketing. The fact is, no matter what you sell online, you have learned something from these podcasts.
Let’s face it. We are all in business to make money. You might be doing what you love or following your passion, but honestly, the latter are few and far between. How you choose to make a living is not always related to your dreams coming true. When the stuff hits the fan, we all (or at least the majority of us), need to make a living. And if it’s selling online, it’s time to embrace eCommerce.
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