The WooCommerce Integration - How does it work, and how do I set it up?


Latest update: - Racene Ratnaswamy

Note: The new WooCommerce integration is currently in Beta and will be available to retailers on our latest Pro and Enterprise plans in the coming weeks. For more information click here.

For Vend users the WooCommerce integration is only available on the Pro or Enterprise plan of our latest pricing plans, If you’re on the Lite plan, you’ll need to upgrade your plan to connect your Vend store to WooCommerce.

The Vend-WooCommerce integration shares product, inventory, customer and sales information between both systems, simplifying daily operations by saving time on manual admin and double-entry. Everything is kept up-to-date between your online and brick-and-mortar stores, so you can be confident that you will only sell stock you have.

If you are new to selling online, WooCommerce is a great option as you can start with the essentials using their free WordPress plugin, and add more features and extensions when you want to build up and grow your online store.

If you already have a WooCommerce account, connecting this with Vend will make it easier to manage sales, inventory, and reporting all from one place.

This article includes:


Overview of the Integration

You can think of the WooCommerce integration as an extra shop window for your entire store. When you turn the integration on, you will have the option to link your WooCommerce store to one or more of your Vend outlets. By doing so, you can pick which of that outlet's inventory are shown online, and WooCommerce will display available inventory levels from the linked outlet.

When a customer makes a purchase on your store, or you complete a stock order, transfer, or stocktake, the sale will be recorded on the register selected for the Woo integration in Vend, your inventory levels will be updated, and your WooCommerce store should be automatically updated.

Important: Integrating other apps, such as inventory managers, with your WooCommerce store may cause problems. Please test this thoroughly before switching on another integration to your WooCommerce store when linked with Vend. Any third party integration that changes your prices and SKUs will cause problems.


How the sync works

The Vend-WooCommerce integration sets up a 1-way sync scenario.

Initial Setup 1-way sync (available)

1. WooCommerce is empty, no products.

2. Your Vend store is full of many products.

3. Vend will fill WooCommerce with products. See Add and Link Products below.

4. WooCommerce sells products and feeds inventory changes back to Vend.

5. Product management is done in Vend for all values that are synced by the integration: Price, images etc. while WooCommerce provides the beautiful storefront.

This is what defines a 1-way sync integration using this extension to sync Vend with your WooCommerce store: Vend overrules/manages WooCommerce product inventory while WooCommerce feeds selected info (sales, inventory) back to it. Due to the fact that Vend is the deciding factor in this system, we call Vend the Source of Truth.


New to WooCommerce

There are three main steps you will need to complete prior to setting up your Vend-WooCommerce online store if you are new to WooCommerce.

1. Set up your WordPress Account.

2. Set up a hosting provider.

3. Set up a WooCommerce account.


1. Setup your WordPress Account

The first step to setting up your Vend-WooCommerce online store is to set up a WordPress account. As WooCommerce is a plugin of WordPress, you will first need a WordPress account before you are able to take further steps.


2. Setup a hosting provider

The next step to setting up your Vend-WooCommerce online store is to select a hosting provider. This will enable you to start building your online store with just a few clicks. As WooCommerce is a plugin of WordPress, you will need a hosting provider who will host the WordPress website on their web servers, leaving you to focus on building your online store, versus, maintaining a web server. There are two options when selecting a hosting partner.

1. Run your WooCommerce site directly from WordPress. As WordPress is a hosting provider itself, if you use the WordPress Business Plan this will include everything needed for you to run your WooCommerce store. Using the WordPress Business Plan can cost extra, but will take you less time to set up your store up so you can get up and running faster.

2. Use a separate hosting provider to run your WooCommerce store. WooCommerce has partnered with a few hosting providers that offer pre-installs of WordPress, WooCommerce, the Storefront theme and ecommerce-specific features, such as a dedicated IP and SSL certificate to keep your store protected and secure. For more information on hosting providers,check out this article. Using a separate hosting provider is a much cheaper alternative to the WordPress Business Plan. However, there will be some extra steps required to set up your store.


3. Set up a WooCommerce account

Once you have set up your hosting, you will need to set up your WooCommerce account. Head to this website to get set up.


Finish

Once you have set up your hosting, WordPress and WooCommerce account, you are ready to set up your integration with Vend.

1. In Vend, open the Setup page, and click Add-ons.

2. Find the WooCommerce add-on and click Connect to Vend.

3. This will take you to the Connect to WooCommerce page. Click on I don't have a WooCommerce account. Click Find out more if you would like to learn more about using WooCommerce with Vend. This will take you to a new page where you will be able to learn more about the integration.

Once you have set up your hosting, WordPress and WooCommerce account, you are ready to set up your integration with Vend. Click here to set up your Vend-WooCommerce integration.


Existing WooCommerce Customers

Important: You will need your store URL and your login credentials to set up the Vend-WooCommerce Integration.

Before you begin

  • We recommend you take a back-up of any product data in either system before you begin. You can export your Vend products on the Product page and you can export your WooCommerce products on their Product page.

  • We recommend setting up a new register in Vend in the outlet you want to link to WooCommerce. This is because sales made in WooCommerce after you close your store’s register for the day will re-open the register. Setting up a separate register ensures all your reporting is clear. For Vend users on a Pro or Enterprise plan, your ecommerce register is included for free. Contact our team to get this set up.

  • Make sure you have set up all the products you need before activating the integration. When you first turn it on, you'll have an option to push all your products to WooCommerce. After this point, you'll need to publish them one-by-one.

  • Once the two stores are linked, you must manage all of your products in Vend.


How do I set it up?

1. In Vend, open the Setup page, and click Add-ons.

2. Find the WooCommerce add-on and click Connect to Vend.

3. This will take you to the Connect to WooCommerce page. Click on the I have a WooCommerce account. option and you will be able to start entering your WooCommerce store details.

4. Enter your WooCommerce store URL. The URL will have to be secured, i.e., https and if you have your domain (e.g. mystore.com) make sure you tell us your WooCommerce domain (e.g. mystore.woo.com).

5. Enter in your Consumer Key and Consumer Secret.

  • If you need to obtain your Consumer Key and Consumer Secret, head to your WooCommerce website.

  • Select Advanced -> REST API

  • Select Add Key.

  • Name your description

  • Change the permissions to Read Write

  • Click on Generate API Key

  • This will provide you with you Consumer Key and Consumer Secret. For more information, head to this article.

  • Once you have your Consumer Key and Consumer Secret, copy and paste the values into the fields in Vend.

6. You will then need to create a permalink under WordPress. This is because your account must have a custom permalink enabled with any of the tags added to it. For more information on permalinks, check out this article.

7. Choose one or more outlets to sync your inventory with WooCommerce.

8. Select a WooCommerce register. We recommend that you add the new WooCommerce register that you may have created before you began. This will help you track your online sales separately from your in-store sales.

9. Select a payment type. Any payments processed in WooCommerce will be recorded as this payment type in Vend.

This could be your regular credit card type, or you might like to set up a separate payment type just for WooCommerce payments.

Important: Vend gift cards do not work with WooCommerce.

10. Click Connect WooCommerce.


How Does the Integration Work?

Add and Link Products

You will now be able to pick how you set up your products.

1. If ALL your products are in Vend, and you want them ALL in WooCommerce, head to your Product page in Vend and click Publish All Products.

2. If ALL your products are in WooCommerce (existing WooCommerce user), click Import All Products.

import all

Note: Any pictures attached to these WooCommerce products will not be carried across to Vend.

3. If you only want to publish SOME of your Vend products to WooCommerce, you may publish a product individually by heading to the product detail page and and selecting Publish to WooCommerce.

4. If you have  products in BOTH systems, check out this article.


Adding new single products

1. Create the product in Vend.

2. Find the product on the product page in Vend. Select it and click the Publish to WooCommerce button.

3. Add beautiful images and other details needed for online sales, such as weight, in WooCommerce.


Product information fields displayed on WooCommerce

Vend WooCommerce
Name Title, Page Title
Description Description, Meta Description
Type Type
Supplier or Brand Vendor
Tags Tags
Variant Name Variant Name
Variant Option Variant Option
Stock Tracking Off - N/A, On - On, product only sold when inventory > 0.

Publishing images

When publishing your product to Vend, we'll also publish all the images you have in Vend to WooCommerce. If you decide to add new images to a product at a later stage, these images will not overwrite the images you have in Woo.

Note: Images in Vend are small sizes, so most customers prefer to  add a high-quality photo in WooCommerce.


Variants and Composite Products

Composite products will show as an individual product in WooCommerce, with the information matched to the composite product in Vend, rather than the component items. Sales of a composite product in WooCommerce will still update the inventory of those items in Vend.

Variant products will display as a single item in WooCommerce, with drop-down menus to select your different variant options on the product's page. This means that you won't be able to display each item in your WooCommerce store separately. If a product is set up as a variant in Vend, all versions of the variant will be sent to WooCommerce. You cannot publish a selection of the versions of the variant to your WooCommerce store.

If you want to display each item individually, you'll need to set them up as separate items in your Vend store.


Managing Linked Products

Update linked products

Once you have linked your products in both WooCommerce and Vend, apart from the exceptions below, your product will always be automatically updated. All other fields (name, price, tags, type, description, quantity etc.), including new variants to a product, should be edited in Vend when you make updates to your product.

The exceptions are:

  • Weight
  • Collections

When you edit a product in Vend, WooCommerce will automatically be updated when you save the changes. This will update ALL fields for the product, and WooCommerce specific fields, like weight and compare-at price. Sometimes, updates take a while to process. If the update does not publish after 1 hour, contact our Support Team.

If you need to update a large volume of products,  you can complete this via CSV import.


Hide a linked product (make a product inactive)

Important: If you make any changes to a hidden product in Vend, it will be made visible again in WooCommerce.

You can toggle the visibility of a product in Vend if you do not wish to display it in WooCommerce anymore. This can be useful if a product is seasonal, or you no longer sell the product currently but may sell it again at some point in the future.

To hide a product on Vend, follow the steps below:

1. Navigate to the Products screen in Vend and find the product you wish to disable.

2. Choose Edit Product.

3. Once on the Edit Product screen, under the Product Type field, click on the green toggle for Sell on Point-of-Sale. This will turn the toggle grey and will disable the product in both Vend and WooCommerce.

It will no longer be accessible on your WooCommerce store or the Vend Sell screen. However, it does not break the link between the product in Vend and WooCommerce, so any updates made to the product in Vend will still carry across to the product in WooCommerce.

To confirm that this has worked you can click the View on WooCommerce button on the product page.


Delete a linked product

I want to delete the product from my Vend store AND my WooCommerce store.

To delete the product in both your Vend and WooCommerce store, always delete the product in Vend. Click on Delete Product on the product detail page of the product. This will automatically update your WooCommerce store. Do NOT manually delete the product in WooCommerce.

I only want to delete the product from my WooCommerce store.

You may not want to delete a product from your Vend store, as you can report on the deleted product. This is useful for items you no longer have in inventory, and will not be reordering.

Important: This does not apply to products with variants. You must delete the variant in Vend to remove it from WooCommerce.

To delete the product from your WooCommerce store, follow the steps below:

1. In Vend, head to the Product page.

2. Click on the product you wish to delete. This will take you to the product detail page.

3. Click the Unpublish button. This will break the link with WooCommerce. The item will still appear on your WooCommerce store at this stage. Next, delete the item from your WooCommerce store.


Adding or Adjusting Inventory

  1. Complete an order, transfer, or stocktake in the Vend outlet(s) linked to your WooCommerce store.
  2. When the order (transfer or stocktake) is completed in Vend, the changes will be updated in your WooCommerce store. Note: If you have a lot of products, especially in a stock-take, these changes may take some time to update your WooCommerce store.

Receiving an order in your WooCommerce store

  1. A customer completes a sale (order) in your store.
  2. In Vend:
    • The sale and payments are recorded in the linked outlet on the register you have selected.
    • The closed sale reduces the inventory level for that outlet.
  3. In WooCommerce:

Note: Orders are received by Vend when they are in Processing status on WooCommerce, to ensure inventory at the time. For BACS, direct bank transfer and cash on delivery, Vend will receive the order when the order is On Hold. You will need to follow the steps here to add payment to the order to complete it.


Shipping Charges

When a sale comes through to Vend from your WooCommerce store, we'll create a Shipping Charges product. Each WooCommerce order with shipping charges will have this product, with your shipping charge amount, added to the sale. 

This means you can also report on the total amount of shipping charges using the Product reports in Vend.


Bank deposit payment type

If you accept payments made via bank deposit, the sale from WooCommerce will be sent to Vend at the time the order is made. The sale balance will show as unpaid.

When the customer pays you, you will need to record the payment and fulfil the order in WooCommerce and record the payment in Vend.  Updating the sale in WooCommerce WILL NOT update the sale in Vend.

To apply the payment in Vend:

  • Your register MUST be open when you apply the payment.
  • Locate the sale in the Sales Ledger. 
  • Click the Apply Payment link.
  • Select the payment type, today's date, and the current time. This time MUST be after the register was opened, and before the register was closed, or your payment will not appear in your register closure reporting.

Automatic updates

By default, your sales in WooCommerce will automatically be added to your Vend store, and update the available inventory.

Although your sales in WooCommerce will be automatically added to your Vend store, if you need to add sales to your Vend store manually, use either the Import All Orders or Import All Open Orders button.

Once you've saved the settings, you're ready to go in Vend.

Important:

  • Don't unlink and re-link your stores unless you're planning on deleting all items from your WooCommerce store and starting from scratch.
  • When the sale from WooCommerce comes through to Vend, the inventory will be deducted for all the products sold on WooCommerce.

WooCommerce and Facebook

If you would like to link your WooCommerce account to the Facebook page of your business, check out this article.

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