WooCommerce 2.6 has at last given way to WooCommerce 3.0, dubbed “Bionic Butterfly”. Experts consider this as major update since plug-in switch to the semantic version. There were 3000+ comments from almost 115 contributors. It remained in beta for three months before release with RC extended testing period. For the theme and extension developers this meant adequate time for speeding up the process. This WooCommerce version contains a brand-new developer tools and Product Gallery, an improvement over its predecessor. It has mobile features, new zoom, and gallery view. Multiple performance and speed improvements are available. CRUD Classes are another introduction. REST API powers the new CLI.
This release contains adequate performance improvements. There is switch between post Meta and taxonomies. This relates to the products out of stock or featured and its related visibility. The contributors reduced query numbers for displaying the related upsells and products. It introduces CRUD that stands for Create, Read, Update, and Delete respectively. Writing and retrieving data from databases now involves less coding.
One of the biggest problems for the e-commerce store tends to be high volume of order. This decreases the site's performance. In the coming times, the developers are planning scalability improvements.
Data-stores approach and the new CRUD objectsCRUD Classes represent fundamental changes related to core data objects. It includes customers, orders, products, and coupons among others. The CRUD new approach introduces additional layer between code and database. This adds control, validation, and structure. Benefits include structured data definition for every resource among others. Up until this new introduction, developers could write data in multiple ways to database for products and orders. Data retrieval was also possible via multiple paths. For this, the developers have to identify the data type. This made it complicated and time-consuming.
For optimizing data storage, WooCommerce developers wanted to have single method for retrieving and writing data. CRUD Classes makes this possible. Now it is possible to modify orders, customers, products, shipping zones, line items, coupons, and payment tokens. Across the unified system, now you require less coding.
It contains zoom features with lightbox and support for mobile devices as an added benefit. Visitors can access both zooming/light box and magnifications. There is intuitive gallery behavior with dramatic improvements for handheld. The major changes relate to touch gestures. When you open lightbox on the mobile devices, it displays true size images. These are larger than in-page displayed images.
This version of WooCommerce has revamped gallery experiences for product individual pages. This is more intuitive, mobile friendly, with more number of functionalities in comparison to previous iteration.
There is improvement in performance especially in relation to large stores. The new WooCommerce contains major performance enhancements. It includes taxonomies to display and determine the various product aspects. In this version as well as future ones, the users can expect much faster stores.
Overhauled Command Line Interface is a great treat for the developers. Earlier the codes for REST API and CLI were separate. This facilitated accidental duplication of code across code base. What you could earlier do with REST API was not possible with CLI. The new version reduces coding with current commands for the developers.
Automatic tax rates sorting: Earlier, this was manual process. With multiple pages, it became time-consuming. Now everything is automatic with version 3.0. You can manage and add new zones of tax easily. There is more emphasis on specific rules over general rules.
Dismissible sitewide notice: This is the front part. It becomes a minor issue even with overlap of the mobile content. Customers now have more flexibility.
Updated WordPress networks/user multisite handling: WooCommerce adds users to existing stores when they have the same network account. In the 2.6 version, such addition gave error notice.
Merged coupon types for product percent and cart percent: Such merging in one method reduces errors and confusion. This used to happen in cart-based validation. There are no more product-cart discounts. Identical discounts were available with the coupon. Cart-based validation stopped coupon application especially in presence of cart non-eligible items. It did not give discounts to the eligible items same as product coupons. Non-intuitive, it led to confusion for storeowners. What is more, it meant double checked out for users using the coupons. Now, the new version has done away with these problems.
Improved developers logging: This version addresses logger limitations and focuses on the extensibility.
Automatic capture of funds: during payment authorizations via PayPal standards, it is now possible to capture funds automatically. This happens when the order changes to completed or processing. In 2.6 X version, this used to be manual process.
WooCommerce 3.0 seems like a hot new introduction. Those ready to give it a chance could review documentation for how to and more. It is important to maintain your backups and grab updates from WordPress Dashboard. While updating you might hitt some brick walls. They should not deter you from trying.
Here below are some common problems and their solutions:
Presence of bug: You might run into a bug or another plug-in that conflicts. You have to report this immediately to issue trackers.
Upgrading blues: The support page is always open to receive such complaints and provide solutions. The complainant can get a ticket on support page.
Want to discuss release: Would you like to chat or share your ideas for upcoming versions? WooCommerce public forums facilitates such discussions and sharing.
Before any upgrades, it is important to ensure theme and extension compatibility with 3.0. Otherwise, it is important to check with extensions/theme developers before proceeding. After upgrade, upgrader data prompt runs the upgrades in background. For password protected or non-accessible sites, there might be delays related to cron-based fallback for run.
Best of luck using WooCommerce version 3.0, hope you enjoy this as much as others are doing.