It’s really easy to create a multi-vendor eCommerce website with WordPress. In this tutorial, find out how to build a multi-vendor marketplace using your favorite CMS.
Do you want to create your very own multi-vendor eCommerce website? With the power of WordPress and Dokan, you can create a multivendor website without having to code a single line! Dokan allows you to create a multi-vendor site where other people can set up a shop, and sell items.
You already know popular multivendor sites like Alibaba, Amazon, eBay, etc. These are e-commerce giants that generate billions of dollars. Multi-vendor businesses, if properly researched and executed have the potential to generate large sums of profit. However, creating such a website that brings enough visitors and offers helpful features to vendors and buyers might sound challenging. But with the proper tools, you can easily do it.
In this article, we will learn how to create a multi-vendor site with Dokan. If you have some experience with WordPress, then this will be a lot easier for you. However, a little bit of experience with WordPress would still be beneficial. If not, then it’s ok, you can still follow this tutorial and succeed. So let’s get started.
Why Dokan multi-vendor plugin?
Dokan is one of the most popular multi-vendor WordPress plugins. It’s automated, self-manageable, and gives you intuitive features to operate your eCommerce site. So if you’re wondering if it’s worth the price, then relax, Dokan’s truly a plugin that you can rely on. It’s a go-to tool to make any multi-vendor eCommerce website with WordPress.
With Dokan, you can easily set up a vendor sign-up form. You can also customize commission rates, allow multiple product types, display seller badges, show store insights with reports etc. It provides you with so many features, that you can create the multi-vendor site that you’ve envisioned.
Some of the features that make Dokan such a useful plugin are as follows:
Get Latest Post Notifications!
- Produces detailed store insights, reports, and statements.
- Supports multiple product types and customizable shipping rate options.
- Frontend dashboard for vendors.
- Easy coupon management to offer discounts for special occasions.
- Manages orders on the go.
- And more.
We have several topics on Dokan so make sure to check those out too. If you want, you can also try out Dokan for free on their official website. If you feel this is the plugin for you, then go for it.
How to create a multi-vendor site with Dokan in WordPress
Since you’ll be creating a complete multi-vendor eCommerce website, you’ll need a few things. First, you need to get the domain and hosting for your WordPress site. It’s important to get a good hosting service because your success largely depends on it. You can add other plugins if you feel it’s necessary. To create a multi-vendor site with Dokan we recommend the following:
- Domain and hosting
- WordPress website
- eCommerce theme
- A page builder of your choice
Since we’re creating a website in WordPress, we need to install WordPress beforehand. There are many hosting services that provide WordPress plans. Getting one of those plans is a good idea as WordPress will be pre-installed on your server. Although it’s not a big deal, you can get any plan and install WordPress on your server manually. Some hosting providers even set up WordPress for you if you ask.
Once your site is live- download, install, and activate the Dokan plugin. Plus, we need to have a suitable theme on board.
For themes, you can use any eCommerce theme that is compatible with Dokan. It’s very popular and many eCommerce themes are now compatible with this plugin. But if you’re looking for premium Dokan themes, check out the following on Themeforest:
Themeforest has a “Dokan” tag, so if you want more themes, you can simply select that tag and search for themes of your choice.
So install and activate your theme and move forward!
Configuring Dokan for multi-vendor eCommerce website with WordPress
After installing Dokan, we need to do a little configuration. You’ll see a setup wizard that you can go through or you can skip it. You can set everything up manually so don’t worry if you’ve skipped it.
First, go to your WordPress dashboard and navigate to Dokan > Settings. If you’re using the free version of Dokan, you’ll see only a few options. In Dokan premium, you’ll get access to a wider range of settings and features.
In the General settings, you can enable/disable the admin area. You can also add in your vendor store URL. But if you’re not sure about it, then leave it. Add a vendor setup wizard logo and setup wizard text afterwards. There are more options such as how many products to display per page, enable/disable single seller mode, select store category, and much more.
There are several settings options to go through. You can follow the official Dokan general settings documentation to fully understand what each setting option is for.
Make sure to go through these settings one by one as some of these are very important. The selling options for example, here you can set your commission percentage, along with other vendor capabilities.
You should also visit the Withdraw Options tab to set up withdrawal methods, minimum withdrawal limit, withdrawal threshold, and more. Just go through these options and you’ll have your site ready in no time.
WooCommerce also has a setup wizard that you might’ve explored when you installed it. If not, you can go to WooCommerce > Settings from your WordPress dashboard to set up everything manually.
For WooCommerce settings, go to the General section and provide the store address, tweak general options, and go through currency options. Next, click on the “Products” tab. Here you can customize the settings but the most important part is selecting a shop page. If you’re using a theme’s starter pack, then it might have a shop page. So from the dropdown select the shop page.
If you don’t have a shop page, then go to Pages from the WordPress dashboard and click on the “Add New” button. Now name the page “Shop”, then click the “Publish” button on the top right corner. Now go back to WooCommerce product settings and select the page you just created from the shop page dropdown.
The next tab is the Shipping settings. Here you can add your shipping zone, region, and method. Then comes the payments tab where you can setup your payment gateway. You can use cash on delivery, cheque payments, direct bank transfer, or PayPal. There are other payment options as well.
In the next tab, set up your accounts and privacy options. In the Guest checkout option, you can allow customers to checkout without creating an account. Usually, this might not be a preferable option for an eCommerce site. If you think it’s not a suitable option for you, then select “Allow customers to log into an existing account during checkout”.
In the account creation, you can check the options shown in the screenshot above. But still, these are something that depends on what you want for your multi-vendor site.
In the “Account erasure request”, it is best to delete the personal information of those customers who want their accounts removed. Go through the privacy settings and set up this section as you see fit.
The other tabs are optional, but going through those will help you set up your site exactly the way you want.
Adding products to the multi-vendor eCommerce website
As this is a multi-vendor site, you don’t need to add any products, that’s something your vendors will do. But we’ll still take a look at how to add a product just for this tutorial. Vendors can add products from their own dashboard area, but the mechanics will be the same.
To add a product, go to Products from your WordPress dashboard, and click on “Add New”. Then add a product name and description, and also add one or more product images.
After the product description, you’ll find “Product data”. From this tab click on the small down arrow on the right side to expand it. Here you can select what kind of product it is (simple, grouped, variable, subscription, auction, etc.).
If you choose a simple product, you can set its regular price, sale price, and also decide if you want to enable wholesale for this product. From the top bar, you can choose if this product is virtual or downloadable.
The plugin lets you mark an item as variable if you have different variations of your product. Take the colors and sizes of a shirt for an example. You might have 3 different sizes and colors for your shirt. In that case, you can choose the variable product option and add the different variations. Plus, you can set different prices for each product type.
Next, go to the “Inventory” tab and select if the product is in stock. You can track the quantity of your product by enabling the Stock management option. After that, add a category to your product from the right sidebar.
If you don’t have any categories, click on “+ Add new category” and create your categories, sub-categories, etc.
Following these steps, you or your vendor can add more products to your shop.
Add a vendor registration page
It isn’t necessary to add a vendor registration page, as vendors can register using the default WooCommerce sign-up option. If you’ve installed everything properly up to this point, you’ll already have the signup page ready. Vendors just have to select the “I am a vendor” option and then fill up the form.
However, if you want, you can create a separate registration page for the vendors. To do this, go to your WordPress dashboard > Pages and click on the “Add New” button. Then give a name to this page, and add the Dokan Shortcode block.
Then select “Vendor Registration Form” from the shortcode list and click on the “Publish” button on the top right corner of the screen. That’s it! You now have a separate page for vendor registration.
To add this registration page, simply edit a page (where you want the registration button to show up), create a button or text, and label it something like “Register” (or something such as sign up, become a vendor, etc.). Then copy your vendor registration page’s URL and add that link on the button or text.
This way, vendors can register and set up shop on your site. To manage your vendors, you can go to Dokan > Vendors from your WordPress dashboard.
Using the Dokan shortcodes, you can display various important sections of your multi-vendor site. For example, if you want to display a vendor dashboard, you can use the [dokan-dashboard] shortcode, to display the store list, you can use the [dokan-stores] shortcode.
We already looked at how to set up the vendor registration form. Now let’s see how to display the store list section. First, we’ll create a page, then add the Gutenberg block for Dokan shortcodes. Then from the list of shortcodes, we’ll select the “Stores List” shortcode and that’s about it. Now publish the page and view it, you’ll see all your vendor’s shops.
Following this method you can create pages, and add the shortcodes wherever you want to display your shop items. And that is how to create a multi-vendor site with Dokan. As you’ve seen, you don’t need to do any coding.
All eCommerce and multi-vendor functionalities that you’ll need will already be added to your site. You simply need to go through each option to set everything up. To customize your page, you can use your page builder, and then add the shortcodes wherever necessary. That is how you can create a multi-vendor site with Dokan.
Over the years, Dokan has become one of the most powerful multi-vendor plugins in the WordPress market. Today Dokan powers over 70,000 online marketplaces with a staggering 1.85+ million downloads! With premium features and support, Dokan is definitely a plugin that won’t disappoint you.
If you’re looking for more information on Dokan, feel free to search our blog as we’ve published several articles on the topic. We hope this post was helpful for you and you’ve managed to create an amazing multi-vendor website for yourself.
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