Adding and Managing Products

Review the product settings in WooCommerce and/or watch this video before adding your first product.


Adding a product ↑ Back to Top

Before adding your first product, familiarize yourself with how product categories, tags and attributes work.


Categories and tags work in much the same way as other post type categories and tags. They can be applied before or during the creation of a product.

Attributes, on the other hand, are different. They can be added per product, or you can set up global attributes for the entire store to use (e.g., in layered navigation).

To learn more, see: Managing Product Categories, Tags and Attributes

Product Types

With attributes and categories set up and stock management configured, we can begin adding products. When adding a product, the first thing to decide is what type of product it is.

  • Simple product type covers the vast majority of any products you may sell. Simple products are shipped and have no options. For example, a book.
  • A Grouped product is a collection of related products that can be purchased individually and only consist of simple products. For example, a set of six drinking glasses.
  • An External or Affiliate product is one that you list and describe on your website but is sold elsewhere.
  • A Variable product is a product that has variations, each of which may have a different SKU, price, stock option, etc. For example, a t-shirt available in different colors and/or sizes.

Adding a simple product ↑ Back to Top

Adding a simple product is a straightforward process and similar to authoring a standard WordPress post. In the Products menu, click Add Product. You are presented with a familiar interface and should immediately see where to type the product title and description.

WooCommerce Add Product - Familiar Interface

A familiar interface for adding product information

Under the main dialog box is the Product Type panel. Define the product type (as outlined above) and whether it is a downloadable (digital) or virtual (service) product.

Virtual products don’t require shipping — an order containing virtual products won’t calculate a shipping cost.

Product data

The Product Data tab is where the majority of important data is input.

WooCommerce Simple Product - General Tab

Product data is added from this panel

General tab

  • SKU – Stock keep unit (SKU) tracks products. Must be unique, and should be named so it does not clash with post IDs.
  • Price
    • Regular Price – Item’s main price.
    • Sale Price – Item’s discounted price.

Inventory tab

The inventory tab allows you to manage stock for the product individually and define whether to allow back orders. If stock management is disabled from the settings page, only the ‘stock status’ option is visible.

WooCommerce Simple Product - Inventory Tab

Ticking the Sold Individually checkbox limits the product to one per order.

Shipping tab

  • Weight – Weight of the item.
  • Dimensions – Length, width and height for the item.
  • Shipping Class – Shipping classes are used by certain shipping methods to group similar products.

Linked Products tab

Using up-sells and cross-sells, you can cross promote your products. They can be added by searching for a particular product and selecting the product from the dropdown list:

WooCommerce Simple Product - Linked Products Tab

After adding them, they are listed in the input field:

WooCommerce Simple Product - Linked Product Added

Up-sells are displayed on the product details page. These are products that you may wish to encourage users to upgrade, based on the product they are currently viewing. For example, if the user is viewing the coffee product listing page, you may want to display tea kettles on that same page as an up-sell.

WooCommerce Product Up-Sells

Cross-sells are products that are displayed with the cart and related to the user’s cart contents. As an example, if the user adds a Nintendo DS to their cart, you may want to suggest they purchase spare Styluses when the arrive at the cart page.

Grouping – Set this option to make a product part of a grouped product.

Attributes tab

On the Attributes tab, you can assign details to a product. You will see a select box containing global attribute sets you created (e.g., platform). More at: Managing Product Categories, Tags and Attributes.

Once you have chosen an attribute from the select box, click add and apply the terms attached to that attribute (e.g., Nintendo DS) to the product. You can hide the attribute on the frontend by leaving the Visible checkbox unticked.

Custom attributes can also be applied by choosing ‘Custom product attribute’ from the select box. These are added at the product level and won’t be available in layered navigation.

Advanced tab

  • Purchase note – Enter an optional note to send the customer after purchase
  • Menu order – Custom ordering position for this item
  • Enable Reviews – Enable/Disable customers reviews for this item


Add a short product description. This typically appears next to product imagery on the listing page, and the long description appears in the Product Description tab.


On the right-hand side of the Add New Product panel, there are product categories in which you can place your product, similar to a standard WordPress post. You can also assign product tags in the same way.

WooCommerce Product Categories and Tags

Product images ↑ Back to Top

You can add a main image and a gallery of images. More at: Adding product image and galleries.

Setting catalog visibility and feature status

In the Publish panel, you can set catalog visibility for your product.

WooCommerce Product Visibility Options

  • Catalog and search – Visible everywhere
  • Catalog – Visible in catalog loops, but not search
  • Search – Visible in search results, but not in the catalog (categories/shop page)
  • Hidden – Only visible on the single product page – not in any product loops

Adding a grouped product ↑ Back to Top

A grouped product is created in much the same way as a simple product. The only difference is you select Grouped from the Product Type dropdown in the General product tab details:

WooCommerce Grouped Product - Inventory Tab

To create your parent product select ‘Grouped’ from the Product Type Dropdown.

Upon setting the product as Grouped, the price and several other fields disappear. This is normal because a Grouped Product is a collection of “child products”; you’ll add this information to individual child products. Once finished with the grouped product, publish it. The grouped product is now still an empty group. You need to create child products to add to this grouped product.

Create a child product to add to a grouped product

Once you’ve created a grouped product, you need to add at least one child product to add to this group. To create a child product, go to: Products > Add New to add a new product. The only information you must enter is:

  • Title
  • Product Type = Simple

You can also add a price and other product details, as needed. Now go to Linked Products to select the parent product from the Grouping dropdown:

WooCommerce Linking a Grouped Product

If you wish to control the order in which products are shown in a group, edit the Menu Order option under the Advanced section in product data.

Adding a virtual product ↑ Back to Top

When adding a simple product, you can check the Virtual box in the product type panel. This removes unnecessary fields, such as dimensions.

Adding a downloadable product ↑ Back to Top

When adding a simple product, you can check the downloadable box in the product type panel. This adds two new fields:

  1. File path — Path or url to your downloadable file.
  2. Download limit – Limit on number of times the customer can download file. Left blank for unlimited downloads.
For maximum flexibility, downloadable products also incur a shipping cost (if, for example, you were offering both a packaged and a downloadable version of a product, this would be ideal). You can also check the Virtual box if the downloadable product is not shippable.
Note: If the Completed Order Email doesn’t contain downloadable links, see this Troubleshooting Guide.

Adding an external product ↑ Back to Top

Choose ‘External/Affiliate’ from the product type dropdown. This removes unnecessary tabs, such as tax and inventory, and inserts a new product URL field. This is the destination where users can purchase the product. Rather than Add to Cart buttons, they see a Read More button directing them to this URL.

Adding a variable product ↑ Back to Top

Variable products are arguably the most complex of product types. They let you define variations of a single product where each variation may have a different SKU, price or stock level.

See Variable Product for a guide on creating a product with variations.

Duplicating a product ↑ Back to Top


To save time, it’s possible to use a product and duplicate it to create similar products with variations and other qualities.

Go to WooCommerce > Products and look through the list for a product you wish to replicate, then click Duplicate.

Mark a Product as Featured ↑ Back to Top

To mark a product as featured, go to: Products > Products and select the Star in the featured column. Alternatively, select Quick Edit and then the Featured option.

Setting A Featured Product

Setting A Featured Product

Product ID ↑ Back to Top

A WooCommerce Product ID is sometimes needed when using shortcodes, widgets and links.

To find the ID, go to that product’s Edit screen via Products > (Choose the Product) > Edit) and then look at the page URL. You should see a short multi-digit number. This is the product ID.


Another way to find a Product ID is to hover over the product in the Products admin menu:


You also have the option of using a snippet of code that adds a new column to the Products edit screen and displays the Product ID for each. More info at: Find WooCommerce Product ID.

Note: We are unable to provide help with customizations under our Support Policy. If you are unfamiliar with code and templates and resolving potential conflicts, contact a WooExpert.

Backorders Out of Stock ↑ Back to Top

If you are managing stock on an order and allow backorders in your product inventory settings, most all payment gateway options will charge immediately. You can use the Advanced Notifications extension to help notify someone other than the shop admin of backorders.


If you want to wait to charge customers for an item until the item is back in stock, you can use the WooCommerce Waitlist (separate plugin) to email all users, notifying them that the item is back in stock with a link to to purchase it.

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