Increase Your Sales with a WooCommerce Product Comparison Table Plugin
A WooCommerce product comparison table plugin lists products in a way that makes them easy for customers to compare. The aim is to present products alongside each other so that customers can make direct comparisons and choose which ones to buy.
What’s wrong with most WooCommerce product comparison table plugins?
If you’re looking for a WooCommerce product comparison table plugin, you’ll find lots of plugins that work in the same way. They let customers tick 2 or more products and then view them on a separate page. You might also find static table plugins where you have to manually enter the data.
There are a couple of problems with most comparison table plugins for WooCommerce:
- No features to help customers find products to compare in the first place.
- Some plugins show the product comparisons in the same layout as the rest of the store, instead of having a dedicated comparison table.
- The product comparisons contain very limited product data – usually image, name and price. You can add extra data if you create comparison tables using a static WordPress table plugin, but you have to enter everything manually which is no good.
WooCommerce Product Table is a different type of product comparison table plugin. It automatically lists products in a searchable, sortable table layout with filters. You can add columns of extra product data to the comparison table, letting customers compare products in a more meaningful way.
Read on to discover how to use it to create the perfect WooCommerce product comparison table. I’ve provided written and video instructions, so get you get started straight away!
How does the WooCommerce comparison table work?
WooCommerce Product Table is hugely flexible and there are many ways to configure your tables. Used correctly, it functions perfectly as a WooCommerce comparison table plugin.
This is how customers can use it to compare products in WooCommerce:
- Customers will view a page on your website with products listed in a table. The table provides several ways to find the products to compare. They can type a keyword into the search box. The filter dropdowns above the list – and/or filter widgets in the sidebar – make it easy to refine the list. They can sort the table by clicking on any column header. Customers can even filter the table by clicking on a category, tag or custom taxonomy term.
- As the customer filters the table, the number of products listed will decrease until they can just see the products they want to compare. This works slightly different from some WooCommerce product comparison table plugins, because you are filtering the table instead of ticking boxes. It’s a neat way to do it because this helps customers to find suitable more products more quickly, instead of having to scroll through a long list of products.
- You can include as many columns of product data as you like in the table. Each product takes up 1 row in the table, and customers can easily view the data for each product and make direct comparisons. For example, if you’re selling smartphones and want to compare the storage capacity, then you can include a ‘Memory’ column in the WooCommerce comparison table.
How to create a WooCommerce product comparison table
WooCommerce Product Table only takes a few minutes to set up. You don’t need to do any data entry or custom coding. Assuming you already have a WooCommerce site with products, it works instantly and lists your existing products in a neat comparison table.
Watch the video tutorial, or read the detailed written instructions below.
- First, get WooCommerce Product Table and install the plugin. Activate your license key using the instructions in the confirmation email.
- Next, go to the page where you want to add a WooCommerce product comparison table. You can also create a new page, if you prefer.
- Add the shortcode
This will list all your products in a comparison table. Customers can perform a keyword search and sort each column in the table, but there are no filter options at this stage.
Improving your WooCommerce comparison tables
So far, I’ve told you how to list all your products in a basic comparison table with filters. By default, the WooCommerce table plugin comes with some standard columns of data – name, short description (summary), price and add to cart buttons.
This works pretty well as a product comparison table. However, you can make it even easier for customers to refine the list and compare products.
The WooCommerce comparison table plugin comes with lots of options to configure your tables. You can learn about them all in the knowledge base. To get you started, I’ll summarise the main options that will help you create fantastic comparison tables.
You can see my finished product comparison table on our demo page. If you like it, simply copy the shortcode from under the table, and tailor it to your own site!
Choose which products appear in the comparison table
By default, your WooCommerce product comparison table lists all products. This is ideal for many types of comparison shopping, because customers can view the full list and use the filters to refine it according to their interests.
However, if you sell different types of products, then you might want to provide multiple comparison tables listing different products. For example, no one will want to compare t-shirts and shoes in the same clothing comparison table, so it’s best to list these separately.
Fortunately, WooCommerce Product Table can be used to create tables listing specific products only. You can create comparison tables with products from a certain category, tag, or even products with a specific custom field or taxonomy value.
Add more filters for refining the comparison table
If you add filters=”true” to the product table shortcode (as I did in the example above), it will show some default filters for your products. You can have much more fine-grained control over how customers can narrow down the list of products in the comparison table.
For the filter dropdown lists above the table, you can choose which filters appear. You can also add extra data within filters, such as product attributes, variations and custom taxonomies.
The comparison table plugin also comes with built-in filter widgets. These replicate the widgets that come with WooCommerce itself, but are designed to work with the product tables. If the page with your comparison tables has a widgetized area such as a sidebar, then you can add widgets to refine the list by attribute, price, or rating.
There’s a knowledge base article with full instructions and examples of all the filter options for your WooCommerce product comparison tables.
Create comparison tables with extra product data
The great thing about using WooCommerce Product Table for your comparison tables is that you get full control over the product data that is displayed. And you don’t have to edit any code to do it!
You can choose exactly which columns are included in the product comparison table. The plugin supports all the standard WooCommerce fields that you fill in when you add new products. It also supports extra fields such as product attributes, variations, custom fields and taxonomies.
This creates an opportunity to create much more useful WooCommerce product comparison tables, which isn’t possible with other plugins. Make the most of it by planning your columns carefully!
To let customers compare products in WooCommerce, I recommend thinking carefully about what data they will want to compare. For example:
- If people will be comparing the price of your products, allow easy price comparisons by including a price column. And even better, use the price filter sidebar widget.
- Use columns such as weight and dimensions for items such as furniture, where customers are buying based on size.
- Product attributes allow direct comparisons of information such as size and colour (or whatever you like!). List each attribute as a column in the comparison table. Add each attribute type as a filter above the table, or use the built-in filter widgets.
- Use WooCommerce custom fields and taxonomies to store extra data about your products and list this as columns in the table. This can include extra technical data that you’re not storing elsewhere.
Change how products are added to the cart
The default WooCommerce comparison table includes standard add to cart buttons. If you prefer, you can replace these with checkboxes so that customers can add multiple products to the cart at once. Or if you don’t want customers to purchase from the comparison table, then you can remove the add to cart column.
Include the stock status
WordPress guru Chris Lema quite rightly pointed out that: “No one wants to see that one product is better than another only to add it to a cart or go to the details page of the product and find out it’s out of stock and won’t be available for weeks.“
With that in mind, it’s a good idea to include a stock column in your product comparison table. WooCommerce Product Table supports WooCommerce stock levels. Simply add a ‘stock’ column to the table. Customers can make sure the products they’re comparing are in stock, to avoid frustration.
Create affiliate product comparison tables in WooCommerce
Lots of WooCommerce websites make money by providing helpful comparisons of products sold by third party websites. Each product has an affiliate link. This earns the website owner a referral commission if the customer clicks through and buys the product from the other website.
You can easily create affiliate product comparison tables without adding any further plugins. WooCommerce has a built-in product type called External/Affiliate Products. You add products in WooCommerce as usual, but select this product type and add your referral link to the affiliate product.
WooCommerce Product Table fully supports External/Affiliate Products. Your affiliate links will appear in the WooCommerce product comparison table instead of add to cart buttons.
You may also like: Earn Affiliate Commission with a WooCommerce Product Reviews Website
Lazy load option for bigger comparison tables
If you’re listing many of products using the WooCommerce comparison table plugin (e.g. 100’s or 1,000’s of products), then you can activate lazy load to prevent any performance problems. This loads 1 page of products at a time, so your site will never crash however many products there are to compare.
Use icons to allow more visual product comparisons
You can make your WooCommerce product comparison tables more eye-catching by adding icons or content added by other shortcodes. For example, you could use icons to represent the different features of your products, instead of listing features using text.
This lets customers compare products more visually, as they can instantly see which features are available in each product.
Tip: To get this working, you might need to add shortcodes=”true” to the product table shortcode. This tells the comparison table to render any code correctly in the table, instead of just showing the code.
Get the WooCommerce product comparison table plugin
As you can see, WooCommerce Product Table is the perfect plugin for comparing products. By listing your product data in a structured table or grid view, customers can make direct comparisons and decide which product to buy.
The easier it is for customers to compare your products, the more likely they are to make a purchase. This is a great way to increase your conversion rates – and ultimately to make your store a success.