Making money from digital products has become a tendency in the e-commerce model. Besides physical products, online stores are encroaching on downloadable items. This area is growing exponentially during the last decades and shows no sign of stopping.
People tend to read books on kindle, play music or stream videos on apps, and even take notes on tablets. Changes in users’ habits require business owners to adapt to thrive in this competitive niche.
Hence, running a digital product store brings you various benefits. It frees you from manufacturing, shipping, and inventory management. You just need to put the effort into an item once, then sell it unlimitedly.
WooCommerce, the most common e-commerce plugin for WordPress sites, makes it easy for you to build a downloadable product store. Still, there are technical challenges and aspects you might face when setting up your shop.
To give you a clear picture of the process, we’ve put together a detailed guide on how to sell digital products on WooCommerce shops. You shouldn’t miss our instructions on securing downloadable files as well.
How to Sell Digital Products on WooCommerce
A lot of products can be moved from shelves to hard drives. You can make ebooks, music audio, or videos and earn an income from them. Calculators, watches, spreadsheets, courses, and gift cards can also be offered as intellectual items and accessible via apps or websites.
There are 5 steps to go through to successfully sell your digital assets. You have to install necessary plugins, set up payment methods, create products pages, and protect product files.
Step 1: Install and Activate Plugins
The WooCommerce plugin is a must to turn your normal WordPress site into an online shop. It’s essential to install PDA Gold to effectively keep your files away from unauthorized access.
You can add a few other plugins to customize your stores. WooCommerce payment, product bundle, and packing slip plugins are recommended, thus your shop can function at its best.
The following guide shows you how to install a plugin:
- Log into your WordPress admin dashboard and open Plugins → Add New
- Type ‘woocommerce’ in the keyword box
- Click ‘Install Now’ and ‘Activate’ buttons
Upon activation, you have to go through a setup process, from store configuration to payment and shipping.
For the PDA Gold plugin, since it comes as a premium solution, the installation process is a bit different. You first need to download it from their website, then press Upload Plugin on the Plugins page to insert the tool into your site.
Step 2: Set up Payment Gateways
This is is the last but most important stage in the customer’s buyer journey. It’s where users take money out of their pocket but also the place that makes buyers abandon their carts.
Make sure you can accept multiple payment methods, especially popular ones such as Stripe and PayPal. To do so, simply go to the Payments tab under Settings in WooCommerce and enable your desired methods.
After that, hit ‘Manage’ or Set up’ next to the option to start your setup.
Step 3: Allow Guest Checkouts and Customer Accounts
You have 2 choices for purchasers to check out, either checking out as a guest or using an account. It depends on your products or store to choose one over the other.
We suggest applying both in your store. If customers don’t want to leave their information, let them check out as a guest. You can advise them to create an account and they can consider doing that later.
Head over to WooCommerce → Settings → Accounts & Privacy tab. Now tick on the boxes next to ‘Guest checkout’ and ‘Account create’ as follows.
Step 4: Protect Your Product Files
Before adding a downloadable item to a product page, you should upload the product to your Media Library and secure it.
Go to the plugin’s Settings page and turn on the Force Downloads option.
Now open the Media Library, then drag and drop your file to add it. If the product file is already there, just skip this step.
- Hitting on ‘Configure file protection’ next to your image/ebook/video
- Protect the file
- Copy the file’s private download link
Step 5: Create Your Product Page
Let’s move to the last step of adding a WooCommerce product page and selling it.
- Go to Products and add a new one
- Enter important product information, including title, description, categories, etc.
- Scroll down to the Product data section and check both ‘Virtual’ and ‘Downloadable’ options
- Enter the private download link you’ve copied and enter it in the File URL box
- Set the download limit and download expiry for your file
- Save your changes and publish the products
Sell WooCommerce Digital Products Like a Pro
We’ve walked you through the entire process of setting up your WooCommerce store and selling digital items there. To have your shop run smoothly, remember to make essential settings, allow payment gateways, and enable guest/account check out.
It’s highly recommended to protect your downloadable goods as well as to prevent unauthorized access from non-paying users. Download PDA Gold and let the plugin handle this for you.
You may want to learn more about tips when selling digital products to effectively gain reputation and boost sales.