How to add dynamic filters in WooCommerce

Store navigation is critical to any online store's user experience. One effective way to enhance your store is to add WooCommerce dynamic filters. They help your store visitors find products faster. This makes visitors likely to buy more and become loyal customers.

If you're running an online store using WooCommerce, you might want to consider adding dynamic filters to it. They help your customers easily find the exact products they're looking for. In essence, dynamic filters update automatically based on the attributes of the products. This particular applies to pages with multiple filters. When one filter is applied, the available options in the other cascading filters will change automatically.

For example, you may have an automobile store with 'Make' and 'Model' filters. Once the user selects a particular car manufacturer, only the corresponding models will appear in the 'Model' cascading filter dropdown.

A cascading approach to navigation filters makes the shopping experience much more efficient for your customers. Though WooCommerce is arguably the most versatile ecommerce platform out there, it doesn't offer these dynamic filters by default. Fortunately, you can still create WooCommerce dynamic filters the very easy way using a plugin.

In this article, we will guide you through the process of adding dynamic filters to your WooCommerce store. The process is completely hassle-free and even newbies can follow the steps in a few minutes. You don't need to know any CSS, HTML, or PHP code. All you'll need is the WooCommerce Product Filters plugin by Barn2.

What are dynamic filters in WooCommerce?

WooCommerce dynamic filters are a powerful tool for ecommerce stores looking to offer their customers a more streamlined shopping experience. Traditional filters are a common store navigation functionality of many online stores. But unlike traditional filters, dynamic filters don't require customers to scroll through several options within multiple filter dropdowns.

This cascading type of filter updates automatically as the customer interacts with them. This means that based on customer selected filters, other filters will update dynamically to show only the relevant options.

Types of WooCommerce dynamic filters

There are three types of dynamic filters that you'll learn how to create in this tutorial:

1. Multiple filters which are dependent on one another

This type of filters update dynamically based on the selected attributes. For example, if a customer selects a specific color, the other filters will update to only show options that apply to products that have that color.

As you can see, the dynamic filter plugin used in the above video also supports dynamic product counts. This means that as the customer selects from the filters, the other filters will update to show the number of matching products.

2. Cascading filter dropdowns which are always visible

This type of filter is ideal for complex products, such as selling car parts online. Cascading filter dropdowns work by allowing the customer to select an initial option, such as the car manufacturer. Then WooCommerce Product Filters will update the subsequent dropdown lists to show only the options that are relevant to the selected car manufacturer:

In the example above, I combined WooCommerce Product Filters with WooCommerce Product Table to make the store navigation even better.

Let's have another example. In the clothing store below, the other filter options and filter results update automatically immediately after selecting the product category and color:

3. Cascading filter dropdowns which appear as the customer makes selections

Or alternatively, maybe you only want to show one filter initially and then dynamically reveal additional filters as the customer makes their selections:

WooCommerce stepped filter dropdowns

In this example, only the 'Car make' dropdown appears when the page first loads. When the customer selects a make, a 'Model' dropdown appears. Additional dynamic filter dropdowns appear until they reach the end of the options you have added.

I'll show you how to create both types of dynamic filter in WooCommerce. But first, let's examine the key benefits of using dynamic cascading filters.

The benefits

Dynamic filters can be beneficial for customers. This is because they eliminate the need to navigate through several filter options and more importantly, pages of irrelevant products. In other words, they help store visitors narrow down search results and find the products they're looking for quickly.

If you own a store with a large number of products, then you definitely need WooCommerce dynamic filters. By making it easier for customers to find the products they want, stores can increase their conversion rates and improve customer satisfaction.

WooCommerce product dynamic filter groups screenshot

This in turn produces the following results:

  • Enhanced user experience When product search is faster and more accurate, buyers generally feel better about your store. Dynamic filters help to narrow down the results based on specific criteria. This makes it easier for customers to find the products they're looking for. As a result, customers end up being more satisfied and more likely to become repeat customers.
  • Increased sales WooCommerce dynamic filters are also effective in boosting sales in ecommerce stores. They achieve this by providing customers with a more streamlined shopping experience. Additionally, you can also use these filters to promote related or complementary products. With improved navigation and personalized product recommendations, your chances of landing a sale are significantly higher.
  • Reduced bounce rate Dynamic filters can help to reduce the bounce rate on your website. Since customers are more likely to find what they're looking for faster, they tend to stay on your site for longer. This can help to improve your website's overall metrics and increase the chances of converting visitors into customers.
  • Better organization and store management Another advantage of setting up dynamic filters with Barn2's Product Filters is the group filters feature. By grouping similar products together based on specific criteria, managing and updating your product listings becomes even easier. This can also help to ensure that products are displayed in the correct categories and filter groups on the front end.
  • Improved SEO Finally, your store's Search Engine Optimization (SEO) gets to benefit as well. Each filter option and filter group has its unique URL. This means you can link to pre-set filters and make it easy for search engines to index and find them. Combined with your store's increased average visit duration, you get to improve your website's ranking on search engine results pages (SERPs). This can lead to increased visibility and traffic to your site.

As you can see, WooCommerce cascading filters are a valuable feature for any store looking to improve the customer shopping experience and increase sales. Now, let's show you the best plugin for creating WooCommerce dynamic filters.

Introducing the WooCommerce Product Filters plugin

As I mentioned earlier, the fastest and most intuitive way to add WooCommerce dynamic filters to your store is to use a plugin. And as the best WordPress filters plugin, WooCommerce Product Filters offers the most extensive features when it comes to dynamic filters. It's an excellent tool not just for adding cascading filters to WooCommerce. It also comes with several other types of filters and filter options.

woocommerce dynamic filters plugin

WooCommerce Product Filters uses a blazing-fast AJAX and advanced filtering system. This means all other filter options are updated immediately after an option is selected from one filter dropdown.

Equally important, the plugin supports a very wide range of filter types. So, whether you want your customers to filter by category, by product tag, price filter (using a price slider), or even filter by attribute, this tool has it all.

Let's take a closer look at some of its most critical features.

Key features

WooCommerce filter plugin with mobile slide-out panel

  • Create dynamic filters using any type of product dataThe fastest way for customers to find products is to let them filter by almost any product data. The plugin supports WooCommerce dynamic filtering by category, price, size, color, attributes, taxonomies, stock status, 'on sale' status, rating, and any other product data of your choice. You can even create custom filters based on custom taxonomy.
  • Multiple choice of filter stylesYou also get different filter styles for different types of product data. You can use dropdowns, checkboxes, radio filter buttons, labels, color swatches, range sliders, images, and lots more.
  • Market-leading indexing and performanceWooCommerce Product Filters ships with a very unique high-performance indexing system. This is very important for viewing WooCommerce dynamic filters in real-time. Irrespective of the size of your store's catalog, this system indexes and displays results for filter combinations instantly. Filtering is blazing fast and your customers never have to reload the page to see results.
  • Mobile optimizationWorried about WooCommerce dynamic filters on mobile? No need to! This filter plugin automatically displays product filters in a slide-out popup panel on mobile. This makes navigation easy and boosts the overall user experience too.
  • Full WooCommerce and WordPress compatibilityThe tool works well with WordPress and WooCommerce themes and WooCommerce plugins. For example, the dynamic filters are compatible with popular page builders like Gutenberg, Elementor, and Divi. Even if you've built your online shop or product pages with unconventional tools, you can add filters anywhere with WooCommerce shortcodes.

Setting up dynamic filters in WooCommerce

Ready to set up WooCommerce dynamic filters in your online store? The process is very easy and straightforward. Simple follow these simple steps below:

Step 1. Install the WooCommerce Product Filters plugin

To get started, you'll need to get your copy of WooCommerce Product Filters here. Once you've completed your registration and acquired the product, you can now easily download it from your Barn2 account.

The plugin also requires you to enter a license key to use it. The plugin developers will send this key to your email address. Next;

  1. Log into your store's WP admin area. Upload the plugin by going to Plugins → Add New → Upload Plugin.
  2. Now select the ZIP file you just downloaded and click Install Now. Once the plugin is installed, click Activate Plugin.
  3. Use the plugin setup wizard to activate your license key and choose how you want the faceted search filters to behave. A few things to pay attention to:
    • For the best WooCommerce dynamic filter experience, I recommend enabling the instant AJAX filter mode. This ensures that the filter options update automatically.
    • You also want to display the product count next to the filter option. This works perfectly if you're using the dynamic filter update type.
woocommerce product dynamic filters setup options

Hooray! You've successfully activated WooCommerce Product Filters. Now, let's set up WooCommerce dynamic filters for your store.

Step 2: Create your first WooCommerce dynamic filter

To add your first dynamic filter to your store's front end, navigate to Products → Filters. Create a new filter group or edit the default one, and click the button to add a new filter.

create new woocommerce product filter group

Start filling this form by completing the first field -'Filter name'. The filter name will appear above the options, so enter something helpful like "Size".

woocommerce dynamic filter settings

All the settings you need to apply to your filter are available on this page. You can set the filter type, customize its behavior, and even add the filter to an existing filter group. The filter type allows you to tweak the display. If you choose, you can set it as a dropdown, checkbox, image, or radio button.

Make sure you pay attention to the 'Filter by' field in this settings form. This is where you can add different attribute filters like categories, product tags, product attributes, and ratings to the WooCommerce dynamic filter.

product filters filter by

If you're opting for the dropdown filter type, then bear in mind that you can display categories and sub-categories in a hierarchical order. This means that only one dropdown appears initially, and then further dropdowns appear as the customer makes selections. This can either be in one dropdown or multiple dropdowns. All you need to do is check any of the boxes below.

woocommerce dynamic filter categories and subcategories in simple or different dropdowns

Once you're done with the settings, click Save changes, and your WooCommerce dynamic filters are now ready! Finally, let's test them

Step 3: Test your new filters

To test your WooCommerce dynamic filters, head over to your shop page on the front end. Remember that you can display dynamic filters anywhere by adding them to a page with the filter's shortcode. To add it to the sidebar or other filter widgets, head over to Appearance → Widgets. Then drag and drop the "Product Filters" to the widget area.

add woocommerce product filters to widget

Depending on the type of WooCommerce dynamic filters, the results should like this.

woocommerce dynamic filters in action

Transform your WooCommerce store with dynamic filters

Adding dynamic filters to your WooCommerce store is an excellent way to improve the shopping experience for your customers. WooCommerce dynamic filters have a significant positive impact on the user experience, sales, and overall success of your e-commerce business.

By using the WooCommerce Product Filters plugin by Barn2, you can easily set up dynamic filters. These filters update automatically based on the customer's selections. This way, you don't only get to boost sales. You can also promote complementary products and improve inventory management.

In this article, I demonstrated how to set up WooCommerce dynamic filters step by step. I also shared some key benefits of doing this.

Ready to improve your store's navigation and overall user experience? Then, it's time to get your copy of the WooCommerce Product Filters plugin.

Did you encounter any issues while trying to follow the steps in this tutorial? Kindly let me know in the comments section below.

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