As a follow up to our look into the rise of WooCommerce, and coinciding with the WC download counter hitting 2 million, we wanted to try and find the largest sites using WooCommerce both for fun and perhaps some inspiration! Despite being installed on roughly the same number of sites as Magento, WooCommerce stores are often smaller affairs selling fewer products with less traffic and revenue. However, if you look a bit closer you’ll find there are a few bigger players out there using WooCommerce that may change your mind on how much WordPress + WooCommerce can really handle. Previously we’ve seen two sites touted as examples of WooCommerce scalability; Soul Brother Records (20,000+ products), and more recently Kinder Books (54,000+ products). Whilst impressive in terms of SKU size (and data entry!), both stores seem to be relatively low traffic, niche sites. The following list we’ve curated focuses more on the overall size and influence (traffic, products, revenue, status) of sites. It’s by no means a fully accurate list of the largest sites – almost impossible with the unfortunately flawed tools available for external analysis – they’re some of the most valuable for examination we found. In no particular order:
Stats: 6.8K Global Alexa Rating
WPML, or the WordPress Multilingual Plugin, is the go-to plugin for localisation of international and/or multilingual sites; with support for eCommerce (with WPML CMS), custom tags, taxonomies and post types, it’s a fully featured plugin that has few substitutes. With a global Alexa rating of around 6800 we can assume they’re pulling in a decent amount of traffic. With just three purchase options the main role of WooCommerce for WPML is handling the checkout and account pages, products aren’t displayed on the front end with Woo, instead making use of the lesser known URL hacks for WC (e.g. http://wpml.org/purchase/?add-to-cart=162035&buy_now=1 which adds the correct variation to the cart and redirects straight to the checkout for an easier purchase flow.)
Stats: 1.4K UK, 23K Global Alexa Rating, 2.5 Million PageViews/Month
Whilst somewhat lower in terms of global traffic levels, The Spectator is a well established, influential magazine that has been running for 184 years in the UK who are using WooCommerce to power their store. Looking back we can see they launched the shop in the summer of 2012 and were originally using Volusion. The site is now using WooCommerce for all aspects, including product display, cart, checkout and account functionality. Add a product to the cart and you’ll instantly recognise the typical WooCommerce cart and checkout page layout.
Stats: 4100+ products, 1.6K US, 4K Global Alexa Rating
HypeBeast is probably our favourite Woo store we’ve come across to date; with a huge catalogue of over 4100 products and traffic stats to match (they claim 32 Million PageViews/month across their network), they’re certainly one of the bigger Woo stores out there. But where the site really excels is its design: it truly looks like a professional, large scale eCommerce site – something that the majority of Woo sites fall far short of. Almost every element of Woo’s default styling has been changed for the better, from product listings to tag and category filtering to the cart and checkout pages – without peeking at the source you’d never think it was running on Woo (Save perhaps for the default message left in the order notes box). Overall, this is one of the best examples of the power of WooCommerce and it’s ability to scale in multiple ways. Definitely have a longer look at this one to give you some ideas for your next Woo project!
We’ve spoken with Hype Beast who have now moved on from WooCommerce, citing difficulties managing their increasing orders and huge product catalogue.
Stats: - 10.8K global Alexa Rating
PageLines DMS is a Design Management System which, as the name implies, tries to bring the content management benefits of a CMS to the design aspect of a website. The core product is a plugin/theme/WYSIWYG drag and drop editor for WordPress, allowing you to easily design websites (that’s the idea anyway). With a global Alexa rating of 10K and downloads of their plugin pushing past 1.2 Million, it’s another pretty huge website using WooCommerce. The main product, a subscription, uses the WooCommerce Subscriptions extension to process their monthly and yearly payment options. PageLines also operates a marketplace for add-ons (similar to extensions for WooCommerce) that add additional functionality to their product, which is also underpinned by Woo, running on a commission basis for contributing authors.
Entrepeneur.com is the digital outlet of one of the largest finance and business magazines currently in publication, and has traffic stats on a par with their reputation. In a similar fashion to The Spectator, Entrepreneur launched a bookstore in early 2012 based on Volusion eCommerce software, but in October this year they made the switch to WooCommerce, although only for front-end product lisitngs. The cart system is currently powered by nopCommerce; whether this is just a transitional compromise or an indication of WooCommerce’s poor inventory and order management systems (we can’t wait for the API, and better systems to be built on top of it!) isn’t something we can figure out at this time.
Have we missed something huge? Let us know in the comments and we’ll take a look.