WooCommerce is an open-source e-commerce plugin for WordPress. It is designed for small to large-sized online merchants using WordPress. Launched on September 27, 2011, the plugin quickly became popular for its simplicity to install and customize and free base product.
WooCommerce was first developed by WordPress theme developer WooThemes, who hired Mike Jolley and James Koster, developers at Jigowatt, to work on a fork of Jigoshop that became WooCommerce. In August 2014, WooCommerce powered 381,187 sites (or 17.77% of e-commerce sites online).
WooCommerce is used by a number of high-traffic websites such as Small Press Expo. For the 3rd week of September 2015, Trends indicated that WooCommerce ran on 30% of e-commerce sites and millions of active installs. Ecommerce is rapidly growing worldwide and WooCommerce has over 39 million downloads as a plugin and is currently active on more than three million websites and is the most popular eCommerce platform in 2018. WooCommerce has approximately 4% of the top million HTML pages. In 2018, statistics show that the percentage of online stores that utilize WooCommerce through WordPress.org’s plugin is more than 30% of all stores. WooCommerce has complete control of the market share with an outstanding 42% of all online stores being powered by Woocommerce.
Since Automattic’s acquisition WooCommerce has kept gaining market share, and has now become one of the leading E-commerce platforms on the Internet.
WooCommerce has attracted significant popularity because the base product, in addition to many extensions and plugins, is free and open-source. In 2018, WooCommerce has near 330 extensions and over 1,000 plugins. In addition, there are thousands of paid add-ons for fixed prices. Many Premium Themes now offer capability with WooCommerce as well as plugins that make a theme framework compatible.
Notable WooCommerce extensions include:
WooCommerce Bookings: Which allows users to sell blocks of time as appointments.
WooCommerce Memberships: which allows the user to restrict access to certain parts of their WordPress website, and sell access to these parts of the website.