Building WooCommerce Multi-Vendor Websites

  1. How to Create an Online Marketplace using WordPress
  2. WooCommerce Multi-vendor Plugin for WordPress
    1. How to Install a Multi-vendor Plugin
    2. WordPress Configuration
  3. Tips for Vendors to Increase Conversions in the Marketplaces
  4. Examples of Multi-vendor Websites

After the tremendous success of such multi-vendor marketplace platforms as Amazon, eBay, Alibaba, as well as many others, the online marketplace has quickly become a truly powerful e-commerce platform. Indeed, an online marketplace is an ingenious invention that makes our lives so much easier. So what is an eCommerce marketplace? Basically, it’s a kind of e-commerce website where products are provided by various third parties, and at the same time, transactions are processed by a single marketplace operator. So today, we are going to figure out how to create a decent WooCommerce marketplace.

How to Create an Online Marketplace using WordPress


WordPress is one of the fastest and easiest ways to create a nice and neat e-commerce marketplace. This very tool is rather easy to use. Most WordPress themes are equipped with Elementor Page Builder, which allows you to easily create websites, using drag-and-drop Builder. Thus, it is a great option for startup founders who are on a tight budget and want to build a WordPress marketplace on their own. Besides, there is a truly huge choice of various WordPress marketplace themes, so you will definitely find one that fits your marketplace platform the best. The procedure of building a WordPress multi-vendor website is quite simple and easy to understand even for inexperienced users. It consists of several steps.

  1. Registering your domain name Your domain name is your web address ( Usually, it is the name of an organization, institution or, in your case, online marketplace. In general, getting a domain is free, since it is kind of in the kit with the hosting service.
  2. Getting hosting service Hosting is that very thing that will connect your marketplace website to the internet, which means that any website just cannot work without hosting. There are many companies that provide hosting services, which on average costs approximately $15 a year.
  3. Installing a WordPress marketplace theme The last step is installing a WordPress theme on your marketplace platform and customizing it according to your needs and demands. This step is super easy, since most modern themes come with Elementor Page Builder, so you can even do it on your own and save some money on a web developer. After these three simple steps your online marketplace is almost ready.

WooCommerce Multi-vendor Plugin for WordPress


Of course, a fully functional e-commerce marketplace platform must be equipped with some powerful WordPress marketplace plugins. E-commerce plugins are extremely essential, since they will provide your website with such features as Add to Cart, Product Quick View, Carousel, Product Grid, and many more. Not only do those features make a marketplace platform fancy, but functional as well. So it is pretty much clear that e-commerce plugin is a must for any online marketplace. Among the most popular all over the world e-commerce plugins are:

  • WooCommerce Product Vendors
  • Dokan Multivendor Marketplace
  • WC Marketplace
  • WC Vendors Pro
  • YITH Multi-vendor

However, perhaps the best plugin for a multi-vendor online marketplace is WooCommerce Marketplace plugin. Let’s just have a quick look at some essential features of this very plugin:

  • Individual Vendor Stores
  • Seller Management UI
  • Order Email Notifications
  • Shipping Management
  • Seller Statement Reports
  • Making Announcements
  • Customized Product Categories
  • Bookable product
  • Seller verification
  • Limited time discount
  • Product categories
  • Store header image

Besides, this very plugin is one of the most affordable options, since it costs only $100 per year.

How to Install a Multi-vendor Plugin

install plugins

Since we finally decided on a multi-vendor plugin for our online marketplace, it is time to figure out how to install one on the marketplace website. So how do you install your plugin? Here are some basic steps you have to follow:

  1. Download your plugin from the official website This step is rather simple and doesn’t need any explanations, does it?
  2. Add the plugin and upload the file Open WordPress, go to Plugins menu then click on ‘Add New’ button and upload the plugin you just downloaded from the official website.
  3. Install zip file After you uploaded the file, click ‘Choose File’ and select the zip file that you downloaded and click ‘Install Now’ button.
  4. Activate the plugin The last step here is to activate your plugin. So basically after the plugin has been installed all you have to do is press ‘Activate Now’ button. And that is pretty much it. You did it!

WordPress Configuration

In order to make any multi-vendor plugin function you have to enable registration to add vendors. To enable the registration form you should do the following:

  1. Go to WordPress Admin > Settings > General
  2. Find the box ‘Membership’ and put a check on ‘Anyone can register’
  3. Save

Depending on the multi-vendor plugin you chose, you might or might not have to activate a permalink configuration. So in order to activate a permalink you have to:

  1. Go to Settings > Permalink
  2. Choose ‘Post Name’ radio button
  3. Choose ‘Custom Base’ button and write “/product” in the box beside it
  4. Save

After you set up the plugin on your WordPress multi-vendor website and made sure everything is working smoothly, you can finally start setting up your account. Among the settings you will 100% need to configure before launching your online marketplace are:

  1. Shipping methods
  2. Gateway payments
  3. Admin commission type and percentage
  4. New vendor product uploads

You can find out more about working with those settings here.

Tips for Vendors to Increase Conversions in the Marketplaces

Once you have finally launched your website marketplace, it’s high time to think about the conversion. Basically, conversion is a marketing strategy, which sufficiently converts visitors of your e-commerce marketplace into buyers. Unfortunately, the average conversion rate of multi-vendor marketplaces is just 3%, which is obviously a rather bad rate. However, you can easily fix this sad statistic by using some of the following tips and tricks on how to increase conversions.

  1. Do not underestimate analytics reports First things first, you have to know what is actually going on in your multivendor marketplace. Certainly, the best way to do that is to use a conversion tracking system. One of the best options for this aim is Google Analytics. Thanks to this very tool, you will quickly find out the statistics of your marketplace and the very things you will have to improve.
  2. Investigate the trends of your customers’ behavior Using a tracking system, you can easily find out the main trends and patterns of your customers’ behavior, thus come up with new marketing strategies for your target audience and convert your visitors to buyers.
  3. Make your online marketplace easy to navigate Most customers will not spend hours on your marketplace platform trying to find the very thing they need. In fact, if they cannot find something in your online store within mere seconds, they will visit another online marketplace and buy the items they need there. That is exactly why navigation matters. So make sure that your WooCommerce marketplace is super easy to navigate. That being said, it has product categories and advanced search system, so your visitors can become your actual buyers.
  4. Provide information about the goods in your online marketplace Nobody is going to buy a product that has no description and no customers’ reviews. So make sure that the products in your e-commerce marketplace have extended descriptions and customers’ reviews sections.

Examples of Multi-vendor Websites

Last but certainly not least, here are some great examples of multi-vendor WordPress themes.

DigiCart - Multivendor Marketplace WooCommerce Theme

Demo | Download | Hosting

Digicart is a beautiful Marketplace WooCommerce Theme for selling digital products online. It is easy to install and 100% user-friendly. Possessing a command of essential options, it included everything needed for launching a terrific e-store. Composed with Drag and Drop page builder, the template is suitable even for people with no experience in coding. Besides, it is widget-ready and single & multivendor compatible.

Main features:

  • Extended documentation;
  • Font awesome icons;
  • Contact form 7;
  • Google Fonts;
  • Product grid;
  • Additional plugins available;
  • Blog module included.

Boutique WooCommerce Theme

Boutique WooCommerce Theme

Demo | Download | Hosting

Price: $114 Boutique WooCommerce Theme is one of the great choices for an online marketplace. This marketplace theme has an eye-catching design, which will no doubt help you to convert your visitors to actual buyers. The theme is fully responsive and cross-browser compatible, which means that your potential customers will be able to shop in your marketplace from all kinds of devices. Besides, Boutique is easy to work with, so you can definitely install and customize it by yourself. Main features:

  • Slider
  • Mega Menu
  • Product Badges
  • Product Quick View
  • Blog
  • Google Map
  • Contact Form

Woostroid2 - Multipurpose WooCommerce Elementor Theme

Woostroid2 - Multipurpose WooCommerce Elementor Theme

Demo | Download | Hosting

Price: $99 Woostroid2 - Multipurpose WooCommerce Elementor Theme is another good option for WooCommerce product vendors. The theme has a neat design that will draw all the users’ attention to the products in your store. The theme has all the elements necessary for e-commerce marketplace features such as WooCommerce package, Jet Elements plugin, and Elementor Page Builder. Moreover, Woostroid2 is among the bestsellers and has a lot of great reviews from customers. Main features:

  • WooCommerce package
  • Various skins for all occasions
  • Mega Menu
  • Responsive design

Realme Multipurpose - Responsive WooCommerce Theme

Realme Multipurpose - Responsive WooCommerce Theme

Demo | Download | Hosting

Price: $110 Last but not least is Realme Multipurpose - Responsive WooCommerce Theme. This very theme as well has a truly beautiful design and all the necessary items for online marketplace features such as Revolution Slider, various layouts, and responsive design. Main features:

  • Google Fonts
  • Search Engine Optimization
  • Multiple Language & Currency
  • Product Comment Module
  • Category Wise Products Tab Slider
  • Product Wish list Module

As you can see, building a WooCommerce multi-vendor website is not a big deal at all, so why not try it?

Read Also

57 Best eCommerce WordPress Themes: Free and Paid

5 Best WooCommerce Hosting Options in 2019

132 WooCommerce Themes at $19 per month: ONE by TemplateMonster

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Anne Laing

If you are looking for inspirational posts and insightful web design articles, then you might be interested in the pieces shared by Anne.

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