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A Bounty on a Function for WooCommerce

I’m going to put out a bounty on a function for WooCommerce

Let me show you the behavior first:

People sell things all the time with WooCommerce. But there’s been one major hangup that I’ve had with WooCommerce Store Owners who have a strong and compelling desire to sell MORE THAN ONE QUANTITY in their WooCommerce Store. Now, let me be more specific. It’s not that old debate about “what’s in default” vs. “what can be hooked and filtered into customizations with WooCommerce”. It really comes down to the buyer.

At the end of the day, it’s all about the buyer.

They are the ones who pay the bills right?

Very rarely is a WooCommerce Store selling something that can only be bought in a single quantity. Sure, it happens “sometimes”. But more often, the store owner would absolutely LOVE it if the customer bought more than one shirt, more than one dog leash, more than one cell phone cover, more than one hand made soap, more than one coffee cup, more than one …..of ANYTHING!

Let’s put some boots-on-the-ground, rubber-meets-the-road, real-world-application to this!

You know those arrows you see next to the quantity selector on some WooCommerce sites? Sometimes they are there, sometimes they are not present. So, what happened?

Back in the day, WooCommerce decided to remove those dropdown arrows next to the quantity selectors from the core of WooCommerce. Did I agree with that? Of course not! Empowering the store owner to display a visual cue to the customer browsing your site is ABSOLUTELY IMPERATIVE to any business!

Let me go on a minor tangent here & say that the ‘reason’ those quantity selectors were removed was even worse. The decision was made to remove those quantity arrows in WooCommerce was because of web browser’s updating themselves. Let me type that out a bit clearer: The decision to remove quantity arrows from WooCommerce core was DUMB! I love the WooCommerce Ninjas. I do! But here’s the bottom line:

The decision to remove the WooCommerce quantity selecting arrows was not based on human behavior, not based on input from store owners, not rationalized with human input, not considered from feedback from WooCommerce store owners.

In other words, I want you to roll back time for a second. Now imagine yourself walking up to any WooCommerce Store owner and ask them something like this:

Would you like me to remove one of the primary cues that you can present to your browsing customers which will empower and enable you to make more sales while simultaneously visually reminding and encouraging customers to increase the quantity of the items they are buying?

The answer from almost every WooCommerce store owner would, of course, be: “HELL NO! I definitely want my customers to buy more than one of anything by increasing the quantity of a product! And if those drop down arrows are one of the only things to visually help that quantity increase, don’t you dare remove those!”

Luckily there is a WordPress plugin for WooCommerce that will add the quantity arrows back into WooCommerce.

Yes! You need to put those back into your store! You can add reminders for multiple quantity sales, notifications for quantity discounts, and various other options. But at the very heart of your store, at the very fundamental level of psychology, those arrows need to be next to the quantity field in your store.

Now, that might have been a bit of a tangent, but let’s get back to my original conundrum. We’ll use the basic example of a WooCommerce store selling tee shirts.

Let’s say that Carl is a typical shopper on your site, and he sees a tee shirt that he loves. Now, you are a smart WooCommerce store owner right? OF COURSE YOU ARE! So, you’ve got the quantity selectors back into your store. Perhaps you’ve got some dialogue on your page mentioning a discount for multiple quantities. Maybe even you’ve sent an email blast out about ordering multiple quantities. Whichever the case, I want you to watch what happens.

Let’s start inside the cranium of Carl as he arrives on the single product page of your WooCommerce store.

Carl views the product page.
He sees the shirt he wants.
Carl is ready willing and wanting to add more than one quantity to his cart.
And, of course, the shirt needs a prompt for the customer to select the size.

Now let’s psychologically freeze Carl’s mind right ….now!

There’s a prompt to select the size of small, medium, large, extra large, and 2XL, & Carl needs 5 of these shirts ~ 2 in Extra Large, 2 in Large, and 1 in Medium. So, what does he do?

Well, if you’re a fan of heatmaps, you can literally watch the customer get a bit confused. Sometimes they will click the up arrow on the quantity selection field 4 times, then select the size of XL. (….now, aren’t you glad those quantity arrows are back in your site?) But now Carl has just added 4 Extra Large Tee Shirts to his order. And that’s not what he wanted, right? Remember, we’ve just sent out an email telling Carl about our discount for multiple quantities. And ordering multiple quantities is exactly what we want Carl to be able to do, right? OF COURSE!

So, Carl realizes that his intent (2XL, 2L, 1M,) is not lining up with what’s in his cart (which is now 4XL shirts). So, he clears out his cart, and (hopefully we have not lost Carl’s purchase at this point) he navigates the WooCommerce store owner’s site back to the original product that he initially intended to purchase from you.

Carl finally figures out how to proceed to checkout with his intended order and the process went a little something like this:

Arrive on product page.
Select the size of only two shirts.
Then increase the quantity field by clicking the up arrow twice.
Click the Add To Cart button.
—> If you’re pushing people directly to the cart or checkout page, this is where Carl’s order falls off the grid because of frustration, attention span, and …well, just normal human behavior 🙂 If your WooCommerce store does not direct people to the cart, checkout, or have a custom per product redirect, then you are in luck ~ for this particular scenario. If there is no customized redirect options after a customer clicks the Add To Cart button, then the same product will simply reload because of WooCommerce’s default options.
Now Carl is back on the single product page of the shirt he wanted.
Again, he needs to make sure the quantity is set by clicking the up arrow twice.
Now he selects the size.
Again, he presses the Add To Cart button.
Hopefully, your particular WooCommerce settings allow Carl to be back on the product page where he….
Selects the size of his last shirt.
Presses Add To Cart.
And can finally checkout.


So, after a bit of collaboration within a few WooCommerce circles… believe it or not, we’re all still a bit stumped. It’s not that WooCommerce can’t fix this. The problem isn’t that WooCommerce Store owners don’t desperately need this functionality in their store. The only part is “how” to specifically make it happen.

And here it is!

For the code type of folks, here’s the wireframe of the code:
For each quantity
Echo out the variation prompt

For the folks who need a more visual interpretation of it, here is what it looks like in a more picturesque real life scenario:

So, each time the customer increases the quantity of the product, either via entering a different number by directly typing or selecting the up/down quantity selectors, then the variation template prompting the user to select their attributes should be repeated exactly that number of times. If the customer changes the quantity to two, then echo/ print/ display/ jquery/ ajax/ load an additional two attribute selections. If the customer chooses the quantity of three, show three. If they change their quantity from a default of 1 to 5, then give ’em five prompts to select their variation attributes.

Yes, I know this could cause huge performance issues if a store owner were to attempt this on a product with a gazillion variation attributes. But that’s not the point of this, nor should it be a consideration when finding the solution for this scenario.
The goal here is to figure out how to tap into the quantity field and echo out additional variation attribute prompts.

The end goal for this is simply conversions, money, sales, and success for a WooCommerce store owner! For various different stores, success is defined using different variables. But I do believe that this “use case” is one that will and can benefit thousands upon thousands of store owners. Why? It comes down to customer behavior! Remember, they are the ones who ultimately create the revenue to pay the bills!

If a store owner has successfully gotten their buyer in the mentality of “ordering more than one” of something, if the WooCommerce store has been properly sprinkled with messages, plugins, programming, and prompts that frame the customer in an atmosphere of buying “more than one” of any given product, then why the hell is the process so complicated! Why are we forcing Carl the customer to make so many clicks to simply order more than one of a specific product? …especially when the attribute’s variations are simple, direct, and common ~ like sizes of a tee shirt?

It shouldn’t be this way! Moreover, a solution is out there… somewhere

We need to fix this! ….might I add…. We need to fix this for thousands of WooCommerce store owners!

Bottom Line:
Carl the customer needs to land on the product, select the variation attributes for his quantities, and press ‘Add to Cart’ one time and one time only!

So, who wants this? Who can find the solution? I don’t mind paying, and at the same time, I will not fund something when I know the person is simply going to run over to CodCanyon and resell the code making any payment pretty much a charity contribution (with no tax write-off benefits!) HA!

I’d like this to be a community driven solution, created in Github or something similar, with the final solution being freely shared with anyone and everyone running a WooCommerce store.

This is a significant ‘user behavior’ problem that is costing some of you store owners hundreds of thousands of dollars… and you’re not even aware of it.

Give the customer an easy, simple, and direct way of selecting more than one quantity and they will! Not just on a ‘simple’ product. But on a variation product with simple, normal, reasonable, variations like shirt sizes. Some WooCommerce store owners do indeed have simple products that prompt for zero attributes to be selected. However, I think if most of the store owners look around, think about your products, think about your store, and keep the customer in mind… You’ll quickly begin to see and understand how this solution does indeed have a huge and substantial potential to boost your revenue!

Now, let’s make it happen!

If you think you’ve got the solution, post in the comments below. If you think you see how to do it, and demand some money for the answer, that’s cool with me (no really it is!) Post your offer in the comments below. If you know someone who can figure this out, share this post with them as well.

Here’s to more conversions, higher cart value, and profits for everyone! -Brad

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