E-commerce is big business. It's also incredibly competitive, which means you need to take advantage of proven techniques to give yourself the best chance for success and make money by selling online. Rarely is this more true than when you’re trying to sell clothes online, given the saturation of the online fashion market.
To encourage customers to choose you over the competition, you’ll want to make buying clothes on your website a convenient and streamlined experience. This means finding a way to display your clothing products and options effectively, such as by using a customized product table.
Or perhaps you need a quick and easy way for customers to choose clothes sizes, colors and other options?
In this guide, we’ll introduce you to the WooCommerce Product Table and WooCommerce Bulk Variations plugins. Both plugins make it easier for customers to browse and buy clothing such as t-shirts, shoes or accessories. We'll even show you how adding quick view buttons can speed up the buying process and increase your sales!
Let’s get started!
Why your clothing store can benefit from a customized product table
Some online consignment shops (like Etsy, thredUP or Poshmark) sell products that require a lot of detailed information. For instance, an online electronics shop will usually merit dedicated pages to explain the ins and outs of each item.
However, a clothing store is a little different as is the case with thredUP, Tradesy, and Poshmark. If you're running this kind of e-commerce site, chances are your products are pretty simple to grasp. Most customers won’t need a lot of information in order to know whether they want to buy a particular shirt, for example. They’ll just want to know what it looks like, and see the options when it comes to colors and sizes.
Therefore, making visitors navigate to a bunch of individual product pages – as in a traditional e-commerce store layout – can be counterproductive when you’re trying to sell clothes online. Some customers might like this extra information, but most want a quick buying process. Instead, you can show off everything you have to offer in a concise product table.
Keep in mind that you don't need to compete with high-end brands that sell luxury items like Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Gucci, or Prada right off the bat.
This lets customers view all the clothing options in one place. They can compare products easily, and add everything they want to their carts from a single page. Once they're done, they can proceed to checkout and make the payment through the payment options you offer (such as PayPal). It's just like buying in a physical clothing store! What’s more, it's simple to set up if you have the right plugin.
3 perfect plugins for selling clothes online in WooCommerce
All clothing stores are different, so I'm going to tell you about 3 amazing plugins. You can use any or all of them to sell more clothes by showcasing your products more effectively:
- WooCommerce Product TableList any or all of your clothes in a quick one-page order form.
- WooCommerce Bulk VariationsMost clothes are sold with a choice of options or product variations. Use WooCommerce Bulk Variations to display your sizes, colors and other options in a user-friendly matrix layout.
- WooCommerce Quick View ProIf you have multiple images of each clothing item (and you should!), WooCommerce Quick View Pro lets customers view extra images along with additional information in a lightbox, without having to visit a separate page for each product.
Plugin 1: WooCommerce Product Table
While WordPress and WooCommerce are the perfect foundation to sell clothing online, they're missing some essential features. For example, they don't provide a way to show off all your items on a single organized page, similar to eBay. Luckily, you can easily listing clothing products with the WooCommerce Product Table plugin:
This plugin helps you create a customized product table to display any or all of your clothing products. Among its many features, this plugin:
- Lets you organize all your clothing, accessories, and more into one table similar to eBay.
- Makes it easy for customers to compare items.
- Customers can click on a clothing image to view a zoomed in version in a lightbox.
- Includes sorting and filtering capabilities, making your product table dynamic.
- Enables you to display product variations (such as colors and sizes) alongside each item.
Best of all, WooCommerce Product Table is simple to use and only takes a few minutes to set up.
Plugin 2: WooCommerce Bulk Variations
WooCommerce Product Table is perfect for listing multiple clothing products on a page. WooCommerce Bulk Variations adds to this by providing better ways for customers to select their size on the single product page (or in the quick view lightbox, if you use it with Plugin 3).
Instead of having to select their clothes size from a dropdown, WooCommerce Bulk Variations displays all the options in an eye-catching grid or matrix like this:
A WooCommerce bulk variations form is ideal for selling clothes in larger quantities. For example, you'll need this if you're selling clothes for parties or corporate events, branded workwear, or wholesale.
The variations are displayed in two dimensions within the matrix-style order form. The customer can enter the quantity that they require for each option, and quickly add them all to the cart.
Case study: Elite Teamsport
From the single product page, customers can choose to either buy one variation at a time or select multiple options and add them all to their cart at once. The WooCommerce Bulk Variations plugin displays all of the available variations in a grid layout with size and color attributes. This makes it easy to buy multiple variations of a product and reduces friction in the buying process.
Customers can use the quantity selectors to specify how many units of each product. They can then click the Add to Basket button to add them to their shopping cart in one go.
Plugin 3: WooCommerce Quick View Pro
As you can see, listing clothes in a table layout can make a huge difference to your sales. You can take your store to the next level by combining the table layout with product quick view.
Think about when you've bought high-quality clothing or handbags online from leading fashion websites like Etsy, thredUP, Tradesy, and Poshmark. You've probably noticed that nearly all of them offer some sort of quick view function. This is where you can see extra pictures and buy without having to visit a separate page for each garment. There's a reason for this - it's because quick view is a much more user-friendly way to sell clothes online.
That's why you need the WooCommerce Quick View Plugin. This handy tool adds - you guessed it - quick view links or buttons to your WooCommerce clothing store. Customers can use these to view more photos of each clothing item, zoom in on images, view the selling price, and buy directly from a quick view popup. You can also show the short description in the quick view, which is a useful place to add size charts, washing instructions and other useful information.
If you're selling customized clothing, then quick view is ideal for this too. Use it with the Product Add-Ons plugin to add text input boxes. This is where customers can upload a logo or enter a personalised message to be added to their custom clothing product.
You can use quick view with product tables. Alternatively, it also works as a standalone product that adds quick view buttons to the default WooCommerce store layouts.
If you're using the WooCommerce Bulk Variations plugin, then the variations matrix can appear in the quick view lightbox. That way, people can select variations and buy in bulk without having to access a separate page for each garment.
How to sell clothes online with WooCommerce (in 5 steps)
In the following tutorial, we’re going to assume that you already have a WooCommerce store set up to sell clothes online. If you’re creating a brand-new e-commerce site, therefore, you'll want to do three things before proceeding:
- Set up a basic WordPress website.
- Install WooCommerce, and go through its setup wizard to configure your store.
- Add all your clothing and other items as individual WooCommerce products.
Once those tasks are out of the way, you’re ready to get started.
Step 1: Install and activate WooCommerce Product Table
First up, you’ll want to get the WooCommerce Product Table plugin running on your clothing website. To do that, you’ll need to purchase the plugin online.
You’ll be provided with a zipped folder containing all the files necessary for the plugin to work. Log in to your WordPress dashboard, and upload this folder via Plugins → Add New:
After the plugin is installed, don’t forget to activate it. Then, visit the WooCommerce → Settings tab, click on Products, and select Product tables:
Here, you’ll need to paste in the key you were sent via email at the time of purchase, and hit Enter. This will get WooCommerce Product Table fully up and running, ready to start selling clothes online.
Step 2: Create a basic table listing your clothing products
Now, you’re ready to set up your product table to sell clothes online. You can either enable the table layout on your main shop and category pages via the plugin settings page. Or if you prefer, you can add tables manually by adding the following shortcode to a page:
Either way, you can see the table by previewing the page on the front end. Right now, it’s pretty basic:
While your product table is perfectly functional already, you’ll probably want to make some tweaks to get it looking and working just right. For example, nearly all WooCommerce clothes stores will include images of their clothing products. We'll do this next.
Step 3: Customize your product table
The WooCommerce Product Table plugin may be easy to set up, but don’t let that fool you. This tool is incredibly powerful, offering a ton of customization options so you can tweak your product table to fit your niche. If you’re looking to sell clothes online, you’ll want to make a few changes.
Head back to WooCommerce → Settings → Products → Product tables (the page where you added your license key earlier). Here, you’ll find a ton of options you can use to customize your product table. We won’t try and cover all of them here. Instead, let’s look at a few that are most useful for a store designed to sell clothes online.
First, you can use the Columns field to specify what information will appear in your product table:
You’ll probably want to include images, for example, as well as a few details about each item such as its category, description, and sale price. You can read up on all the column options in the plugin’s documentation.
Right below that, you may want to check the box labeled Show quantity selectors in the Add to Cart column. This will enable customers to purchase more than one of each item, which is a useful feature for a clothing store to have.
Most importantly, you’ll want to choose one of the latter two options under Product variations:
This setting displays your items’ variations right within the table. In other words, customers will be able to see and select all clothing options, such as colors and sizes. You can either display these variations as dropdown menus, or on their own rows.
It’s also a good idea to enable Filter dropdowns, which will let customers sort the table and find the type of clothing they’re looking for quickly:
Finally, if your store offers a lot of different clothing items and accessories, you may want to select the Lazy load option:
This improves performance for product tables with a large number of entries. Just be warned that this setting does interfere with some of the other features we’ve discussed.
When you’re done customizing your product table settings, save your changes. Then, you can return to your product table page to see the results:
You can continue to make changes – anything you alter in the settings will be automatically applied to your product table via the shortcode. When you’re happy with the way your table looks and functions, go ahead and publish it! This will let customers start using it to make purchases.
Step 4: Create a separate product table for each clothing category
Most stores sell clothing from multiple categories. For example, you might have top level categories for men's, women's and kids clothes. These are probably divided into sub-categories, for example t-shirts and tops, dresses, trousers, underwear, nightwear, swimwear, etc. You might have peripheral categories such as shoe and accessories. Maybe you sell other types of product such as music, and not just clothes.
With so many clothing products on offer, you'll want to list each category separately in your WooCommerce store.
There are 2 ways to do this:
- Use the option on the plugin settings page to automatically enable the product table layout on your product category pages. Whenever someone clicks on a link to a category or sub-category, they will see the correct clothing products listed in the product table.
- You can manually create as many pages as you like and add a product table shortcode to each one. Use these instructions to edit the shortcode to list clothes from a specific category only. You can either create a separate page for each category of clothes, or add multiple product tables to a single page.
Step 5: Add WooCommerce Bulk Variations
If you want people to be able to select clothing sizes and other options in bulk, then you'll also need to get WooCommerce Bulk Variations. If not, you can skip this step.
- Install WooCommerce Bulk Variations on your site.
- Find the plugin settings page at WooCommerce → Settings → Products → Bulk variations.
- Choose your license key and tick the box to enable the bulk variations grid throughout your store.
Now whenever someone views the variations for a product on the single product page (or in the quick view lightbox, once you've completed step 6), they will see them presented in the bulk order form matrix.
Step 6: Add quick view to your WooCommerce clothes store
As we saw earlier, the WooCommerce Quick View Pro plugin is a must if you're selling clothes with WooCommerce and WordPress. This how to set it up:
- Install and activate WooCommerce Quick View Pro.
- Go to the plugin settings page at WooCommerce → Settings → Products → Quick view.
- Enter your license key and choose what you want to appear in the quick view lightbox. For selling clothes, you'll probably want the full product image gallery, image zoom, and possibly the short description and add to cart options.
- If you're using WooCommerce quick view with product tables, then you should also go back to WooCommerce → Settings → Products → Product tables. Add
quick-viewto the list of product table columns, or tick the option further down the page to replace links to the single product page with quick view.
Step 6: Use a WooCommerce extension to add more options
The above three steps are sufficient for creating a fully-featured and compelling product table. However, there’s one more tool you may want to consider adding to your site.
WooCommerce offers a number of extensions, including one called Product Add-Ons:
This extension lets customers further personalize their purchases. You can enable them to add on items to their orders, via input boxes, drop-down menus, and checkboxes. If you offer personalized clothing and accessories, this extension will also make it easy for customers to request custom messaging.
For example, if you want to sell personalized t-shirts online then Product Add-Ons is a must. You can use it to add check boxes for optional extras, and a text entry box to add a personalized message. It's even possible to include a File Upload field (e.g. to upload a custom logo or design), although customers will need to click through to the single product page to use this.
As you can see, Product Add-Ons is a valuable addition that helps you sell clothes online more effectively.
Where to get the plugins
If you’re looking to sell clothes online, you’ll need to use the most effective strategies in order to stand out. This includes finding a way to show customers everything you have to offer – and all the relevant variations – in one convenient place.
Fortunately, this is a simple matter with the plugins featured in this article:
- WooCommerce Product Table - perfect for listing clothes in a flexible order form layout.
- WooCommerce Bulk Variations - perfect for letting customers choose sizes and other options in bulk.
- WooCommerce Quick View Pro - perfect for speeding up shopping.
Use the plugins alone or together to create a professional clothing store that will be a pleasure to use. They all come with full support, documentation and a full 30-day money back guarantee.
Do you have any questions about how to sell clothes online with WooCommerce? Let us know in the comments section below!
Image credit: Max Pixel.