WooCommerce is arguably one of the best eCommerce software out there, but that doesn’t mean it’s not without its issues. Sure, you can get your store up and running in record time, but what happens when your store is slow? Or, you’re experiencing any other common technical issues? As a WooCommerce store owner, you want your store to stay up and running 24/7. After all, whenever your store is down due to a technical glitch, it’s losing you money. Below we take a look at the most common WooCommerce issues and what you can do to fix them, so they don’t cost you sales or lead to a poor customer experience.
1. Out of Date Plugins and Themes
Keeping your WordPress themes, plugins, and core up to date is not only beneficial for your site’s security and overall performance. But, it’s important for your WooCommerce functionality as well.
If your theme and plugins are out of date this leaves you open to security vulnerabilities, plus it can cause conflicts to occur since the codebase isn’t up to date with the core version of WordPress. Put simply, make sure all of your plugins and themes are always running the most up-to-date version.
But, you’ll also need to ensure that not only WooCommerce but any Woo extensions are up to date as well. Out of date software on this level will cause major issues with your storefront.
To check for any existing updates navigate to your WordPress dashboard and go to WooCommerce>System Status. Here you’ll find any important notifications, or updates, that are highlighted in red.
Update these and you should see your store return to normal.
2. Plugin and Theme Conflicts
Theme and plugin conflicts are one of the biggest causes of most WordPress website issues, and this includes sites that run WooCommerce too.
The more plugins you have running the higher the chances of a theme or plugin conflict arising.
Although they might add some useful functions to your site, any additional plugins you’re running bring with it more code. If you’re not using a high-quality third-party plugin or theme, then this code could be buggy and lead to a conflict that brings down your site.
WooCommerce itself can’t guarantee any third-party plugins and themes, simply because the vetting process and having to pour through the codebase of every theme and plugin out there would be near impossible.
Now, there are themes and plugins that have been designed with WooCommerce in mind.
Still, conflicts do arise and here’s how you determine the culprit.
Is it a theme conflict?
First, you’ll want to determine if it’s a problem with your theme. Navigate to Appearance>Themes and select a default WordPress theme like Twenty Seventeen. Activate it and see if the problem still occurs.
If it goes away, then it’s a problem with your theme and you’ll need to get in contact with your developer or theme provider to help resolve the issue.
Is it a plugin conflict?
If it’s not a conflict with your existing theme, then it could be a plugin conflict.
Navigate to Plugins>Installed Plugins and deactivate every single plugin that’s not WooCommerce or a Woo extension.
If the problem disappears, then it’s a conflict with one or more of your plugins.
Now, go through your plugins one at a time and activate each plugin. Once you’ve found one that triggers the issue, then remove that plugin and find a suitable plugin that doesn’t cause the same issue.
3. Product Image Sizes Are Wrong
Having images that look good and display properly is absolutely crucial to running a successful online store. Still, image issues do arise.
If your images are looking a little wonky, are blurry, or seem stretched, then you probably have an issue with your image sizing.
First, you’ll want to set your theme’s default image sizes and your WooCommerce default image sizes to be the same size.
Within WooCommerce you have three different image sizes to think about:
Single Product Image: These are the largest images and display when you open a given product.
Catalog Image: When you’re on a product category page, or something similar, these medium-sized images will appear.
Product Thumbnails: Underneath the main product images you’ll see the individual product images, which are the smallest of the product images.
To change your default image dimensions navigate to WooCommerce>Settings>Products>Display.
Here you’ll be able to adjust the default image sizes. Make sure the sizes you change them to are the same as your default theme image sizes, and the images you upload are actually large enough to meet the new dimensions.
4. Digital Downloads Don’t Appear in Checkout
If your store sells digital goods, then these should be delivered to your customers via a download link in their email inbox. But sometimes this link won’t appear and your customers won’t be able to access their purchase. This is a surefire way to get a swarm of angry emails.
The most common reason this occurs is due to a table conflict within your MySQL database. If the name of your table is longer than 64 characters, then it won’t be able to generate.
To fix this issue you’ll need to shorten your table prefix. To do this the easy way install a plugin called DB Prefix Change, then use that plugin to change any lengthy table prefix names.
5. You Have the Wrong Hosting Configuration
Sometimes the issues you’re experiencing with your WooCommerce store could be due to your hosting configuration. If you’ve done the theme and plugin check in the steps above and are still experiencing an issue, then check with your host.
There are a myriad of issues that can arise from a host not optimizing your hosting environment for WooCommerce.
If you’re running a fresh install of WordPress, with the default WordPress theme, and zero plugins besides WooCommerce, then a hosting conflict is your best bet.
You can either get in contact with your existing host to see if this is a common issue, or you could upgrade to a managed WordPress hosting for WooCommerce websites like Pressable. If you’re planning on growing your WooCommerce store and want a host that can support you and your site goals, then a managed WooCommerce host is the way to go.
Hopefully, you have a better understanding of the main issues that plague WooCommerce stores and the steps you can take to fix them.
Zach has 12+ years of experience with WordPress, from creating and maintaining client sites, to providing support and developing documentation. A knack for problem-solving and providing solutions led Zach to pursue a job with Automattic providing customer support in 2015 working with WooCommerce support, and now Zach has recently joined our team here at Pressable. Outside of work, Zach enjoys spending time with his family, playing and watching sports, and working on projects around the house.