WordPress, even though developed as an ecommerce platform, has evolved as one of the best ecommerce platforms. WooCommerce is the free and best tool to create online shopping website. With this plugin, your entire website can be enabled to sell physical as well as downloadable goods. With additional plugins, you even sell subscriptions on your web site. One of the best and most convenient ways to sell products on the recurring basis is by using the WooCommerce subscriptions plugin. However, there are many types of subscriptions service that you can offer your users through your WordPress website.
WooCommerce subscriptions is one of the best plugins that integrate with WooCommerce for accepting recurring payments. It allows you to choose from a wide range of payment gateways as well. So, you can choose the payment method that is most convenient to you. It easy to use and configure. Here are a few main features of WooCommerce subscriptions that let you create different types of subscription features on your website.
WooCommerce subscriptions let you manage and display product variations on your ecommerce website. You can present different versions of your product/services at different prices. So the website users can choose from the available options and subscribe to their desired products at the determined price.
The trial period of a subscription is where the prospect users can try out the service to know it features and favourability. Most of the services available on the internet allow 10-15 days free trial period where they can evaluate the service. After 15 days the users can decide if they want to continue they’d like to pay the fee and continue using the service.
Sign up fees
Types of subscriptions you can create
The following are the most common type of subscriptions that are offered with the modern WordPress websites.
- Membership subscriptions
- Product subscriptions (For digital/physical products)
- Service subscriptions (For intangible services)
- Subscription with automatic renewal
- Subscription with manual renewal
With WooCommerce subscriptions, you can create any of these websites that collects recurring payments with the easiest steps. All you need to do is to configure your websites according to your requirements and set the options to collect payments.
The most popular kind of subscription is membership subscription. These are the kind of websites where the users are required to sign in, in order to gain access to a certain part of the website.
Membership subscriptions, basically refer to the access control of your website. If you want to create a website with some parts that are only accessed by registered users, you can use the WooCommerce Memberships subscription plugin with WooCommerce subscriptions. Both of these WooCommerce add-ons finally create a membership subscription that is renewed after each duration.
Let’s understand this with a simple example – There are some online software systems that allow the access to use their software only to the people who subscribe it. Let’s say an online photo editing software, that allows the members to use their photo editing features if they pay the subscription price. The subscription can be charged on monthly, weekly or yearly. Therefore, the user can subscribe for the required period for a fixed price and get access to the photo editing software.
Websites created using WooCommerce can sell shippable as well as downloadable products. So with WooCommerce subscriptions, you can sell either of those products based on subscriptions. You can even sell the digital products like ebooks, pdfs, videos, images, etc on a recurring basis. You can also present product variables effectively and let the visitors choose from them.
An example for product subscriptions
The ecommerce websites involved in the bulk distribution of the products can sell their products on scheduled basis. For instance, a website that sells raw materials required for some industrial products needs to supply a fixed amount of raw materials at a fixed period. So, the industries can subscribe to their products and get recurring deliveries at the end of each subscription period.
Service subscription is yet another common type of subscriptions. Most of the services available on the internet are on the subscription basis. You try the service online, sign up for it and then choose the subscription pack of your choice to continue using the service. You can also choose if you want the auto-renewal of the service or manual.
The best example for service subscription is hosting service. Suppose, John signs up for the hosting and subscribes for a year worth of service. This enables him to use their server space for a year at the determined fee. When the year completes, he can either continue the service by paying again or he can cancel the service.
Subscription with automatic renewal
There are certain subscription services that will be automatically renewed at the end of subscription period.
So your website will process the recurring payment automatically and the user intervention will NOT be required. WooCommerce subscriptions allow you to create such subscriptions.
But, to create subscriptions with automatic renewal, you much choose a payment gateway that allows the processing of scheduled payments.However, the users can unsubscribe to such package at any time. Click here to view the list of payment gateways that support automatic renewals.
Example for automatic renewal
There are certain services and products that are available for automatic renewal subscriptions. One of the most practical examples is crowdfunding websites where the user wants to pay a certain amount for a specific cause.
Let’s say there’s a crowdfunding website that gathers funds for Child education, Women’s rights, and hunger and poverty. So you can create different causes called “Child education”, “Women empowerment” and “Hunger and Poverty” as different products. Optionally, you can create different product variations for each cause. That is, for child education, you can create different charity variations for collecting different amount for the cause.
So, while donating for “Child education”, the users can choose the required amount and subscribe to pay it at a fixed amount. Therefore, the amount will be automatically deducted from the donors account at the determined subscription period, without requiring any action from them.
Subscription with manual renewal
This type of subscription website is a bit different than the website with automatic subscription renewal. Where the automatic renewals don’t ask for confirmation and directly charge the subscribers, the manual renewal will seek the subscriber’s permission for a renewal.
If you want your visitors to choose if they want to renew the subscription after the completion of each subscription period, you can create a website without automatic renewal. This kind of website will need user actions to sanction their subscriptions and pay the fee to renew the service.
The subscription will be kept on hold until the user takes some action to confirm the renewal and pay for the subscription.
Example of manual renewal
There’s a dietitian website aimed at weight maintenance. This website provides monthly consultation and diet chart accordingly. The users can key in your physical details (like weight, height, BMI, etc.). Based on the particulars submitted by the users, the system will generate a diet chart/Daily requirement chart. So, at the end of each subscription period, the users will need to re-subscribe by manually by paying the subscription fee.
And the possibilities are unlimited…
The type of websites mention above are just the example of what you can do with WooCommerce and WooCommerce subscriptions. You can create a website with any of the above-mentioned types of subscriptions or all of them. For instance, you can create a membership website with automatic renewal or a service subscription with manual renewal.
The plugin is robust and you can configure it as per your needs. The cherry on the cake – It’s too easy to understand and use. So you can use your creativity and create remarkable ecommerce websites that best for selling your recurring products online. Click here to access the step by step tutorial to start selling subscriptions using your WordPress website.