1. WooCommerce Product Sample
  2. Getting Started

3. Managing product samples by category, product or variation

After configuring WooCommerce Product Sample on the plugin settings page, you might want to manage product samples separately for individual categories, products, or even per-variation. For example, you will need to do this if:

  • You want to offer samples of some product but not others.
  • Some of your product samples will be free, and you will charge for others.
  • You need to select different tax or shipping classes for different product samples in your store.

You can override the global options for each individual category, product or variation. Similarly, you can override the category options for specific products or variations.

The plugin will always use the most specific option available. For instance, if you have set a different sample price sitewide, for a category AND for a product in that category, then the plugin will use the price which you set for the individual product - ignoring the global and category prices. This ensures that the correct settings are always used, with no conflicts.

Product sample category options

You can optionally manage the product sample settings for all the products in a particular category. Where set, these will be used for all products in the category and its sub-categories, unless you have overridden these for individual products/variations.

Sub-categories will inherit the settings from the parent category, unless you choose to set different product sample options for that sub-category.

The 'Samples' column in the list of categories indicates whether samples are enabled for that category. This allows you to see which categories are using samples at-a-glance.

Product samples

Use the dropdown to enable or disable samples for all the products in the category:

  • Use global settings (the default) - This inherits the Enable sample for all products option from the plugin settings page, plus all the other options such as sample price and shipping class.
  • Configure the settings for this category individually - This enables samples for all products in the category and its sub-categories, regardless of whether or not samples are enabled globally. When you enable this option, additional fields appear on the 'Add/Edit Category' page so that you can override the global settings for this category only (e.g. the sample price and shipping class).
  • Disable samples - This disables samples for all products in the category and its sub-categories, regardless of whether or not samples are disabled globally.

The current setting for each category appears in a 'Product samples' column of the list of categories on the right of the page. You can use this to quickly check the settings for each category and sub-category.

Sample price

Set a sample price for all the products in this category.

Shipping class for product samples

Choose a default shipping class that will be used for all product samples in the category.

Before doing this, you need to set up your shipping classes in WooCommerce → Settings → Shipping → Shipping classes. If needed, refer to the official WooCommerce shipping classes documentation.

Tax class for product samples

Choose a default tax class that will be used for all product samples in the category. You can override this for specific products or variations.

Before doing this, you need to set up tax classes in WooCommerce → Settings → Tax. If needed, refer to the official documentation on setting up taxes in WooCommerce.

Managing product samples for individual products

You can manage your product samples for individual products, overriding the global or category-level options.

Enabling the product-level options

To avoid clutter, some of the sample options for individual products are hidden by default. If an option (e.g. price) can be managed at a global or category level then it is hidden by default. If it can only be managed per-product (e.g. stock) then it is always visible.

You can enable the hidden options as follows:

  1. Go to the 'Add/Edit Product' page.
  2. Scroll down to the 'Product Data' section and click on the ‘General’ tab.
  3. Select an option from the 'Product samples' dropdown:
    1. Use global/category settings (the default) - Inherit the global or category-level options.
    2. Configure the settings for this product individually - Display additional options in order to manage the sample options for this product individually.
    3. Disable samples - Do not offer a sample option for this product.

If 'Configure the settings for this product individually' is selected then some additional options will appear depending on whether it is a simple or variable product.

Simple products

General tab

Use the 'Price - Sample' field to set a price for the product sample.

Inventory tab

You will see a 'Sample' version of the 'Manage stock' option and the fields that appear when you enable it. Use these to manage stock separately for the sample version of the product.

Shipping tab

You will see a 'Sample' version of all the shipping options. Use these to manage shipping for the sample version of the product.

Variable products

Inventory tab

You will see a 'Sample' version of the 'Manage stock' option and the fields that appear when you enable it. Use these to manage stock separately for the sample version of the overall variable product.

Shipping tab

You will see a 'Sample' version of all the shipping options. Use these to manage shipping for the sample version of the overall variable product.

Variations tab

By default, each variation will use the same product sample options as the overall product. If you would like to configure the product samples for a particular variation individually (e.g. to change the price for that variation only) then you need to change the 'Variation sample options' option to 'Configure the settings for this variation individually'. Alternatively, select 'Disable samples for this variation' to disable samples without affecting the other variations.

If you have selected 'Configure the settings for this variation individually' then a 'Sample' version of all the options the individual variation will appear. Use these to manage the product sample options individually for that variation.

Related Articles

If searching the knowledge base hasn't answered your question, please contact support.