Introduction to Product Management
In this guide I will show you, the online store owner or user, how to manage all the basic functions you will need to manage products in your store. This guide assumes you are using a desktop computer or tablet. You can also use your mobile phone to accomplish the exact same tasks but be mindful that the settings and layout will be different.
You will be provided a link and credentials to log into your store. Please keep these details safe. Once logged in, navigate to the Product tab, and then select All Products. From here you can manage all product related functions.
Product Tab Navigation
From the All Products Tab, you will see all products in your store.
- Check that the All has been selected on the top just below the title Products. You may have unpublished products available and to prevent duplicates, select the All products so you have a full view of what’s in your store. As you get used to the interface, you can swap between the filters.
- There is also a select filter for stock, product type and category. This can be handy with larger stores with many products as well as quickly checking the relative product details.
- If you are searching for a particular product, you can use the search on the top right of the window. This will search within the title and description of the product.
- When you hover over a product, you will find product actions available for a specific product.
- Edit: this opens the product on a new window where you can modify all details of a product.
- Quick Edit: This expands the product on the same window without loading a new page that allows you to change some basic product details. This may save you time if you need to change certain details.
- Trash: this moves the product to trash. Products in trash are not immediately deleted from the website. So, if you accidentally move something to trash, you can recover it. Products that have moved to trash are permanently deleted after at least a week, depending on the system settings.
- View: This will load a new window that displays the selected product as a customer would see it.
The quick edit settings contain many but not all settings available for a product. Below are some important fields that you would need to know about.
- Title: The visible product title on the product page
- Slug: This will appear on the URL and is automatically created. Change this only if the product name has significantly changed. E.g. https://myshop.co.za/slug
- Price: This is the regular price of the product.
- Sale: This is an optional field. If used, this will be the actual selling price of the item. The regular price above will be the “before” price and will display in most cases as (
- Shipping Class: If you have shipping set by class, you can adjust it here.
- Manage Stock?: Use this if you want to set explicit stock levels.
- In stock?: You can manage if a product is in stock or not here. On back-order option means a customer can still purchase the product if you don’t have stock.
- Product Categories: You can easily change between existing product categories here. New categories need to be added from the Categories Tab on the left first.
When done, ensure you click on Update on the bottom right.
Full Product Editing
There are 2 descriptions that need to be added for a product. A long and a short description. The short description generally appears directly next to the product image and above the Add to Cart button. This gives viewers a quick overview.
The long description is generally at the bottom of the product page and used if you have many details you need to share.
It is good practice to fill in both appropriately, however if needed both long and short descriptions can be the same but not blank.
Under the product data section, the first option you will see is the drop down option where you will find simple and variable products. Product types determines the settings available for a product and how it is displayed on the front-end. The others are for more advanced use cases and can be ignored if you are starting out and selling physical products.
This, as the name suggests is just a simple product as you would expect.
If you have a product that has different colours, sizes or other type of variation, instead of having multiple simple products in your store, you can have one product that allows the customer to make a desired selection.
When using this, you must first create attributes like size or colour under the attributes tab. Product stock, price and other specific settings will now be found under Variations.
For simple products, you can add or remove images from the right-hand side Product Image panel. This will be with the primary image when you first open the product page. To add multiple images, scroll down to Image Gallery.
For Variable Products, under variation, click on the image icon to add an image for that variation. You would still be able to use the Product Gallery for pictures that apply to all variations.
There are a view time saving tasks that can be accomplished with the bulk editing option. However, it is advised you start of with 2 or 3 products at first to make sure you got it right.
You can use the filter in conjunction with bulk editing to select the products that need to be edited.
Note: Bulk editing here implies changing all selected products to the same value for a selected field and NOT quickly editing many products with different values.
This covers all the basics you need to manage the products in your store. The more often you use it, the more experience you will get and later move onto more advanced settings that will really make your products and store stand out.
For a glossary on terminologies and advanced settings for product management, click here https://woocommerce.com/document/managing-products/
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