Introducing WooCommerce 2.4: The Helpful Hedgehog

The latest version of WooCommerce, the popular WordPress eCommerce plugin, has just landed. And it's a helpful one, apparently.

Named the “Helpful Hedghog”, the WooCommerce team claim that this update, “[focuses] on making store settings more intuitive for store owners by creating a brand-new onboarding wizard, simplifying setup for standard shipping options and improving how WooCommerce handles products with many variations.”

Here's a look at what's new.

Get Started Easier

There are lots of reasons to start a store with WooCommerce, especially if you're new to the selling scene. Now though, it's easier than ever.

New store owners will get to use a brand new set up wizard, which:

  • Recommends commonly used settings to make it easier to get started
  • Helps the user quickly set data like store location & currency based on geolocation
  • Helps the user to configure PayPal standard with just an email address

Further updates include:

  • Variations will load 20 at a time to make it easier to navigate
  • Loading happens via AJAX and Javascript, so you don’t have to wait for a page to refresh
  • Simpler flat rate and international shipping options
  • Shipping options can be prioritized by store owners
  • Geolocation now works with static caching

Developers will be pleased to hear that WooCommerce hasn't forgotten about them, either. Here's what Version 2.4 means to code fiends:

  • Custom AJAX Endpoints have been introduced to improve loading times on the frontend during events such as adding to cart. Previously, admin-ajax.php (the standard WordPress ajax endpoint) was used but this had the disadvantage of loading the entire WP admin just to make a request. The custom endpoints work around this.
  • A Visual API Authentication Endpoint has been added. Services which integrate with the REST API can now use the visual authentication endpoint so a user can login and grant API permission from a single page before being redirected back.

So all in all, a pretty robust set of enhancements across the board.

To find out more about this update, head over to the WooCommerce blog.