When the default WooCommerce layout doesn’t fit with how your customers browse and buy products, an order form could be exactly what you need. For many online stores, adding a WooCommerce order form is one of the most efficient ways to improve conversion rates and boost sales.
Shops with large product directories, restaurants selling online, and wholesale stores are just some of the cases where this is true. By reconfiguring product layout, you provide a quicker, more logical, and user friendly shopping experience for customers. This in turn significantly increases conversions and profit.
In this step-by-step guide, you’ll learn how to do just that. You’ll create a searchable, sortable order form in minutes using the WooCommerce order form plugin, WooCommerce Product Table – making this plugin one of the fastest and easiest ways to boost online sales.
How can an order form boost sales on WooCommerce sites?
WooCommerce powers around 40% of all eCommerce stores, and a staggering 94% of the eCommerce stores built on WordPress. So if you already run an online store on WordPress, chances are you use WooCommerce.
The single biggest goal for every eCommerce store owner is to increase sales. This means making the ordering process as user friendly for your customers as possible. But, too often, stores unknowingly place barriers in the way of customers buying.
Take the default WooCommerce layout: this only allows customers to view a small number of products at once. Typically, a WooCommerce store will have a grid layout with just three or four products per row:
This is ideal for stores selling a small number of products, or ones where product visuals are the primary factor in selling. But it’s not the quickest way to shop large directories – slowing down the buying process and heavily limiting the number of products a customer can browse and compare.
When speed and/or bulk ordering are a priority, a WooCommerce order form is preferable. This alternative layout lets customers view and compare many more products at a time. Then, if required, customers can click on a product for larger images and extra details. With an order form, each image is compact, allowing space for more columns, as well as the added functions of sorting, filtering and bulk add to cart:
As you can see, this layout is geared towards speed – both that of finding products and of purchasing them. Let’s take a look at some examples where an order form like this is preferable to the traditional WooCommerce layout.
When to use a WooCommerce order form
A WooCommerce order form won’t be the right choice for every store. So sticking with the traditional WooCommerce product layout may give customers the best experience if any of the following statements are true:
- You only sell a few products
- Your customers frequently read detailed product information before buying
- Large images are a key factor in selling your products
However, when it comes to bulk purchasing and speedy checkout, a WooCommerce order form really shines. To show you exactly what I mean, here are just some of the specific use cases where an order form layout can boost sales…
- Wholesale catalogue for bulk purchases: when ordering wholesale, customers tend to have a clear idea of what they’re looking for, and often buy in bulk. The default WooCommerce layout is laborious for wholesale customers to search, with too much space used up by large images. They’re also forced to add products to the cart individually. An order form makes it simple for wholesale customers to search and filter to find the products they need, and to choose any quantity quickly.
- Restaurant order form: when ordering food online, people expect it to be easy to compare and select dishes, drinks, and sides. An order form provides a similar experience to ordering at a restaurant, allowing customers to browse quickly, select multiple items, and place an order.
- Product builder for customizable products: build-your-own product websites let customers choose the individual components of a final product. An order form is the perfect layout for this and works for anything from hampers, to burgers, to subscription boxes, to strollers – the options are endless.
- Large product directory: do you have a gigantic product directory? A WooCommerce order form lists all your products in a way that’s searchable and sortable. So, no matter how many products you have, it’s easy for customers to rapidly find exactly what they’re after.
- Product lists: create dynamic lists that automatically update anytime new products are added. These might include all your products, products from a specific category, or a custom taxonomy. You could even include different product lists on different pages or posts.
- Custom order forms: does your site have password protected client areas? If so, you can create order forms tailored to individual clients, displaying their favorite products. This shows your clients you care about their needs, enhancing their loyalty to your brand.
Now that you know why a WooCommerce order form boosts sales, and some examples of when they’re the ideal choice, let’s dive into building one.
How to create the best WooCommerce order form
I’m going to show you how to create the following searchable, sortable WooCommerce order form, which you can further customize to your store’s needs:
Your WooCommerce products will each be listed in a separate row. The table has various columns, and you can select which columns you’d like to include in your table. Customers can filter by category – either using a drop down box above the table or by clicking the links in the categories column. There are tons of other features and options, so after we’ve set up this order form, I’ll highlight some of the further customizations you can make, including one page checkout and bulk ordering.
WooCommerce doesn’t come with the capability to create order forms, but it’s surprisingly quick to do using WooCommerce Product Table. This plugin works in all the use cases we looked at above, and more.
To get started, you’ll first need to download and install these two plugins on your WordPress site:
Before using WooCommerce Product Table, you’ll need to add your license key. In your WordPress admin, head to WooCommerce > Settings > Products > Product tables:
Step 1. Create an order form page on your site
You can add your WooCommerce order form anywhere you’d normally add content on your site, such as a page, post or widget. For this example, we’ll create an individual page especially for our order form.
To do that, just head to Pages in your WordPress admin, click Add New and name your page. For this example, I just called the page ‘Quick Order Form’.
Step 2. Add Product Table shortcode
You can add a product table to your chosen location using a shortcode. You can type the shortcode, [product_table] or, even easier, add it to a page or post by clicking the toolbar icon labeled Insert Product Table:
This shortcode tells the page to display your product table, and pulls in the default options from the plugin settings page. Your default product table will look something like this:
Feel free to add any other text or images above or below the order form shortcode. You could even have multiple order forms for different categories, with headings for each. How you structure it is completely up to you. When choosing the layout, it’s key to consider the way your particular customers shop.
Step 3. Choose order form columns
By default, the WooCommerce order form plugin will display all your products, along with a name, description, price, and Add to Cart button. As well as lots of other customizations, it’s simple to edit which columns you include in your order form. You can do this either in the shortcode itself or in the plugin settings.
We’re going to add a Categories column to this example. Head back to WooCommerce > Settings > Products > Product tables.
Under the heading Default options you’ll see the Columns box. We just need to add ‘categories’ to the comma separated values here:
Check out the plugin documentation for all the different columns you can add.
Now we’ve added the new column, our table looks like this:
We have a great looking WooCommerce order form, but there are plenty of other customizations we can still do…
Step 4. Customize order form
All of the following options are customizable from the product tables settings page (under WooCommerce > Settings > Products > Product tables):
- Customize table design: Change colors, borders and fonts to blend with your website design.
- Edit image sizes: Make images smaller or larger depending on their importance in selling your products.
- Product links: Include or exclude links to product pages depending on whether customers require extended product information.
- Lazy load: For large product directories, lazy load can help avoid performance issues and slow loading times.
- Quantities: Speed up bulk ordering by displaying quantity selectors in the Add to Cart column.
- Add to Cart button: Include a check box so customers can add multiple products to the cart in one go, speeding up the checkout process.
A lengthy checkout process is one of the biggest causes of abandoned carts. As you can see, these customizations are geared towards making the checkout process as speedy as possible, to increase your WooCommerce conversions.
Improve your order form and make more sales: get WooCommerce Product Table.
Finally, let’s take a look at some of the other ways to further boost your site’s conversion rate.
5 more ways to increase your conversion rate
With your WooCommerce order form set up, you now have the ideal product layout. If you need any extra help at this stage, you can see a WooCommerce order form video on the Barn2 site. But – to level up your site even more, here are 5 extra ways to increase your conversion rate:
1. Measure and adjust
Measuring your conversion rate gives you a benchmark of how well your site is doing, and provides an accurate way to assess the impact of any changes you make. Ideally, you’ll want to make each change one at a time, and track the impact on your WooCommerce conversion rate using Google Analytics or one of its alternatives. That way, you’ll be able to pinpoint what does and doesn’t work, then adjust accordingly.
2. A/B test elements
Sometimes the small things can affect your conversion rate. If you’re unsure about a page title, a call to action, an image, or a menu layout, test it out! There are lots of A/B testing plugins available, making it simple to try out two different variations of elements. You can then choose the best variation based on which results in the highest number of conversions.
3. Customize Add to Cart button
Speaking of testing different variations – have you considered your Add to Cart button? It’s simple to customize the default text using the free plugin, WooCommerce Custom Add To Cart Button. This plugin is perfect if you want to test the effectiveness of different wording (or if you provide quotes for customers rather than displaying prices on site). Edit the button text, add a cart icon, or replace the text with just an icon. You can then test and measure as per the suggestions above!
4. Retain existing customers
Retaining existing customers is often much easier and cheaper than finding new ones. Improve customer retention by offering discounts for signing up to your email subscription list. This gives you a direct way to keep in touch long term, so you can continue to promote your products to the perfect audience: the people you already know are very interested.
5. Give social proof
Adding social proof to your WooCommerce site encourages conformity, thereby boosting sales. It could take the form of star reviews, customer quotes, or you can even embed video testimonials. You can add these to your WooCommerce order form itself or elsewhere on your site, such as a dedicated testimonials page.
For continuous growth, it’s important to regularly measure your conversion rate and tweak your site accordingly. And try not to let your site stagnate. For example, no reviews for 4 years is arguably worse than no reviews ever, as customers could think your store is out of action.
Boost your sales in minutes with a WooCommerce order form
While the default WooCommerce layout is suitable for stores selling only a few products, to encourage bulk purchasing and allow for speedy checkout, a WooCommerce order form is generally a much wiser choice.
If this sounds like your store, WooCommerce Product Table is the plugin you need. With this plugin, you can create a highly optimized WooCommerce order form in minutes, ideally suited to your customers’ buying habits.
A WooCommerce order form gives customers a transparent, quick and user friendly checkout process –crucial to boosting online sales.
I hope this guide has been helpful in setting up your WooCommerce store for success. We’d love to hear how you apply it to your site – let us know in the comments below!