How Much Does WooCommerce Cost?
WooCommerce continues to be one of the most popular e-commerce platforms worldwide. It’s no surprise with the platform’s flexibility, customizability, and integration with WordPress.
While the main WooCommerce plugin is free and has numerous built-in features, there are other costs involved in building and running an e-commerce site.
So, how much does a WooCommerce site really cost? Let’s break down the main components.
Table of Contents
WooCommerce Set Up Costs
If you have an existing WordPress website and are just adding a shopping cart to the site, you may not need additional design work done. But if you are building a new website, you’ll need to decide on the best approach for the website design and development work.
Custom Design - Project-Based pricing
One option is to hire an experienced WooCommerce web agency to create a custom designed WooCommerce site. This can be a larger investment of time and resources, but the result is a much higher-quality design. If you have a more complex WooCommerce store requiring lots of customization, you may need to take this approach.
Pricing for a custom design Woo site can vary greatly and range from $10,000 to $25,000 depending on the design work and functionality scope.
Pre-Designed WooCommerce Themes
Another approach is to purchase a pre-designed theme or template. This can be a cost effective option and require less time to build the site. When reviewing pre-designed options, try to find a theme that is well-maintained by its developer and offers excellent support.
Paid WooCommerce themes can cost anything from $20- $100 per year. Depending on your own experience with WooCommerce, you’ll probably need support from a designer and developer to customize the theme.
Outside of the design & development work, your main costs for the WooCommerce store will be additional plugins or extensions. Depending on your products and store needs, you may be able to only utilize the WooCommerce free plugin.
The following functionality is included in the free WooCommerce plugin:
- Ability to sell products: physical, digital, or virtual
- Calculate flat rate shipping
- Calculate taxes
- Accept credit card payments using the Stripe gateway
- A default customer account area where customers can see the status of their orders or download any digital products
Most WooCommerce stores require additional plugins to set up the store. These plugins or extensions are paid and often require a yearly payment in order to keep the latest version on your site.
With the basic WooCommerce plugin, you can set up flat rate shipping, free shipping or local pickup. With the free WooCommerce shipping extension, you can connect to USPS and print labels from the WooCommerce dashboard.
However, you’ll need paid extensions to offer more shipping options. Today, customers have high expectations for shipping options and information, so you may need to invest in these extensions to offer a competitive checkout experience.
Here are some of the common WooCommerce shipping plugins & costs:
- UPS Shipping Method - this extension allows you to display live shipping calculations from UPS in your store.
- Cost: $79/year https://woocommerce.com/products/ups-shipping-method/
- Table Rate Shipping - this extension expands upon WooCommerce shipping methods and allows you to define multiple shipping rates based on location, price, weight, or item count.
- Cost: $99/year https://woocommerce.com/products/table-rate-shipping/
- Fedex Shipping - if you want to offer Fedex shipping for domestic or international shipping, you’ll need this extension. This option does require that your store handle US or Canadian currency.
- Cost: $79/year https://woocommerce.com/products/fedex-shipping-module/
Setting up your payment gateway will often require additional paid WooCommerce plugins. The costs will depend on your choice of payment gateway. You’ll also need to factor transaction fees into your ongoing store costs.
The three most popular payment gateways are Stripe, Paypal and Authorize.Net, and each one currently offers a 2.9% transaction fee and an additional $0.30 per transaction.
Here are the popular WooCommerce Extensions for each payment gateway:
- The WooCommerce plugin for Stripe used to be a paid plugin, but it is now a free download
- Stripe has become extremely popular, thanks to its clear documentation for developers and support. It is also extremely customizable and can be set up for recurring automatic payments for membership or subscription sites.
- Cost: $0 for setup + merchant processing fees
- PayPal has numerous services and packages, so the required plugin will depend on the set up on your site. The WooCommerce main plugin offers PayPal Smart buttons where a visitor can click the PayPal button and process payment with PayPal or with a credit card. Since the button says PayPal, some customers can misunderstand this option and think that they need a PayPal account in order to check out on your site.
- As an alternative, you can utilize the paid PayPal Payments Pro extension and take credit cards directly on the site.
- Cost: $79/year for plugin + merchant processing fees
- In order to integrate Authorize.net as a payment gateway, you’ll need the paid WooCommerce Authorize.net extension. This allows you to accept credit card payments directly on the site and supports all Authorize.net merchant accounts.
- Cost: $79/year for plugin + merchant processing fees
Email Marketing & CRM Integrations
You may also need additional WooCommerce plugins in order to integrate your email marketing service, like Mailchimp or Constant, and/or to integrate a CRM such as Salesforce or Hubspot.
Here are some of the marketing & sales extensions for WooCommerce
- Mailchimp for WooCommerce - this is a free extension and helps you sync lists and purchase data with Mailchimp lists.
- Cost: $0 for extension + Mailchimp pricing based on your list sizes
- HubSpot for WooCommerce - this is a free extension and offers an easy way to sync all WooCommerce data with HubSpot.
- Cost: $0 + Hubspot pricing based on plan
- WooCommerce FollowUps - this is a popular paid WooCommerce extension that allows you to send additional follow up emails after purchases.
- Keep in mind though that there are limitations with the design of emails being sent from the WordPress dashboard.
- Cost: $99/year for plugin
WooCommerce Hosting Costs
You’ll also need to account for hosting costs for your WooCommerce site. WooCommerce e-commerce sites typically have larger database sizes and also tend to receive more traffic than informational sites, so you’ll need to invest more in your selected hosting service.
If you place a large WooCommerce site on a cheap, shared hosting service, you’ll often have performance issues and security risks. It’s best to invest in a dedicated managed WordPress hosting service like WP Engine or a dedicated server.
Some recommended hosting features for a WooCommerce site include:
- A staging/production area for testing and plugin updates
- Backup service on the server level
- Security monitoring
- Disk writing protection
- Enough resources to handle a larger database size. WooCommerce site databases can range from 100 MB to over 900 MB and you’ll need enough resources on the server to handle this or you’ll face performance issues.
Depending on your traffic and database size, dedicated managed WordPress hosting can cost anywhere from $40 to $300 per month. A dedicated server is typically much more expensive from $1000 to $2000 per month at a minimum.
Be careful when reviewing options as some hosting platforms use the term ‘dedicated’ but there are actually other sites on the server that may take up resources and limit your site’s resources.
Maintenance & Security Costs
In addition to hosting, you’ll need to budget for WooCommerce maintenance and security costs. All WooCommerce sites require regular maintenance and a best practice is to have a skilled WordPress developer update the plugins and theme on a monthly basis.
Plugin incompatibility and breaks are very common on WooCommerce sites, so it’s helpful to test these updates on a staging or production area before implementing these on the live site.
WooCommerce maintenance plans typically cost $120-300 per month, depending on the size of your site and the number of plugins installed. Maintenance plans can often include security monitoring and hosting as well.
Security is also a critical factor on e-commerce sites. Since WordPress is highly targeted by hackers, you’ll need to invest in security monitoring service for the site if it’s not built into the hosting platform.
Sucuri is a popular 24/7 security monitoring and malware removal service and costs between $200- $300 per year.
Customer Support Costs
Lastly, you’ll need to consider costs for customer service and support. For small WooCommerce sites, you may not need additional support agents for customers.
However, larger sites will need phone support and/or live chat in order to manage a high volume of customer tickets regarding refunds, checkout errors or site access. The costs will depend on whether you’ll utilize in-house resources or outsource to an answering service or customer support service.