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    5 Common WooCommerce Technical Problems And How To Fix Them

    As opposed to Saas options such as Shopify, working with WooCommerce on WordPress takes some technical knowledge.

    A developer is not necessarily needed, though it can sometimes be tricky for entrepreneurs with no technical background. 

    While Shopify, BigCommerce, Squarespace, and other such solutions come with an ultra-intuitive drag-and-drop builder with the backend taken care of too, WordPress website owners need to handle hosting, configuration, and design by themselves.

    Luckily, they have a lot of help at their disposal:

    • User-friendly documentation which covers common issues extensively
    • A wide community as well as “Happiness Engineers” who can assist
    • A ticket system for technical support 

    This article will outline the top 5 most common issues encountered when using WooCommerce, and the easiest ways to resolve them.

    • Conflict
    • Image Display
    • Server Configuration Errors
    • PHP Errors

    Conflicts

    This is a leading cause of website issues, with an emphasis on broken functionality. 
    There are two types of conflicts:

    • Theme conflicts
    • Plugin conflicts

    A theme is a collection of templates that define the appearance of your website, while plugins are extensions that add functionality. 

    While you can only have one theme installed at any given time, the more plugins you have installed, the higher the chances there will be conflicts. 

    This is especially true with free, poorly coded third-party plugins that have not been properly vetted.

    How To Tell If You Have A Theme Conflict - Revert back to a default WordPress theme such as Twenty Seventeen. If the problem goes away, this means your theme is the culprit.

    How To Tell If You Have A Plugin Conflict - In this case, you will need to deactivate all plugins as a first step. If the problem goes away, you can safely conclude that indeed there is a conflict with one of your installed plugins. From this point, you should reactivate them one by one until you find the source of the problem.

    To avoid these issues, it is best to choose only top-rated, well coded, and credible themes and plugins in order to minimize the chances of conflicts.

    Outdated Themes And Plugins

    One of the most important parts of running a WordPress website is updating all installations regularly. This simple action bridges you over to the safest, best-performing versions. Failure to update regularly can create security and performance issues.

    In order to check that all your installations and extensions are up to date, simply navigate to WooCommerce > System Status. Required updates will be highlighted in red.

    Image Display

    For online stores, it is crucial for images to display perfectly. Here are some common issues that store owners encounter:

    • Stretched images
    • Low resolution or blurry images
    • Wrong placement or incorrect display 

    Here are some of the first steps you can take to tackle most of the common causes:

    1. Make sure you adjust all your default sizes in WooCommerce, and match the image sizes you use to these dimensions.
    2. Your images must be high-resolution in order to display properly. You should use the highest quality you possibly can, typically 800 x 800 px or higher, as recommended by WooCommerce.
    3. Some store owners have had issues with WooCommerce 3.0, as their theme was not compatible with the new gallery features that came with this update. In order to avoid this, it is best to use WooCommerce-compatible themes from the get-go such as TheShop, ShopIsle, eStar, and Storefront.

    Server Configuration Errors

    If you have checked for conflicts, and your themes and plugins do not seem to be the source of the problem at hand, there is a good chance that you have an issue with your hosting configuration.

    Here are your options:

    • Communicate With Your Hosting Provider - They will be able to determine the source of the problem and how it can be resolved.
    • Go For Managed Hosting For WooCommerce - If you opt for this setup, the hosting provider will take care of all your hosting needs on the server level. SiteGround, Liquid Web and Bluehost are some examples of hosts that provide this package.

    Some common server errors include:

    • 404 Error - This usually happens due to broken links.
    • 500 Internal Server Error - This can be caused by corrupt files or an issue with the WordPress Core files.
    • 503 Service Unavailable - This complex error involves the way PHP responses are delivered to the server.

    When it comes to hosting issues, there are too many to mention. Going for an appropriate hosting package could slash down your server configuration issues to zero.

    PHP Errors

    This type of error needs the attention of a developer or your hosting provider. There are three common types of PHP errors that can occur:

    • PHP Fatal Errors
    • Runtime Errors
    • Errors Triggered By PHP Function

    The WooCommerce documentation gives extensive information about all types of PHP errors and their solutions, but it will probably be challenging for those with no programming knowledge.

    Bottom Line

    WooCommerce comes with ample support systems to make sure your online store runs smoothly, as well as specialized hosting packages designed to eliminate backend issues too. Many store owners find WooCommerce daunting, but it does not have to be. 

    Most issues can be avoided with good choices when it comes to themes and plugins, and a correct setup of hosting packages. In addition, 100% of all issues can be solved - especially if you work with a solid hosting provider or have a developer on hand.