The First Ever WooCommerce Conference: #WooConf Recap

In case you miss it (like me), on November 3 and 4 in San Francisco, WooThemes hosted the first WooCommerce conference ever with the presence of 300+ participants and speakers from all over WordPress and ecommerce world to share their experience and advice, namely Chris Lema (CTO at Crowd Favorite and ecommerce expert), Justin Stern (SkyVerge), Thijs de Valk (Yoast), Deepak Nadig (PayPal), etc. and of course Mark Forrester, Brent Shepherd, Max Rice from WooCommerce team. The event was hosted by two awesome South African comedians Derick Watts and the Sunday Blues, sponsored by multiple sponsors such as Amazon Payments, PayPal and many more.

The #WooConf (hashtag for the event) took place in two days, covering ecommerce strategies and how to leverage WooCommerce for a better online business. Let’s take a look at what we missed this year.

Kick-off speech by Mark Forrester – State of the Woo

The co-founder of WooThemes walked us through Woo team’s history, from a theme shop to a big name in WordPress world, and how the WooCommerce exploded to be the most popular plugin in ecommerce website.

The highlight of this talk was definitely the announcement of WooCommerce 2.3, more scalable, implementing Unit Testing, and email improvement.

Photo courtesy of Sky Verge.

Day of knowledge

First day of the #WooConf could be considered to devote to equip the knowledge about ecommerce. The valuable learning came from amazing speakers.

Brennan Dunntalked about increasing transactions, lifting avg. transaction amounts, andscaling customer lifetime value in “Quick Wins to Make Your Store More Valuable”.



Cyndie Shaffstall addressed the issue of cart abandonment and how to keep our customers on the website and make them “Buy More! Buy Now! Buy Again!”

Joshua Eichornfrom Pagely made a presentation on “Scaling WooCommerce” basically about technical issue.

You could learn 10 things to “Improve Your WooCommerce Sales Without UX Testing” from David de Boer.

If you are wondering how to make a killer web design, Kandace BriglebofNeedmore Designsmay surprise you with anthropological approach on “How Participant Observation Makes for Killer Web Design”.

Thijs de Valkof the famous Yoast delivered “Data Is Your Friend; Psychology is Your Mentor”. During this talk he highlighted his personal favorites of the Google Analytics datasets and how to find them.

Robert Elliottof Graphflow on “Matching People and Products” about how an anthropological perspective can help you get to the heart of client stories and craft websites with their own personality and culture.

There were not one but two presentation about security indeed it needs a lot of attention.

Rahul Deshpandefrom MasterCard Labs with”Security with Payments” talked about technical issue while Sam Hotchkissof BruteProtect (recently acquired by Automattic) cover basic “Security with WordPress and WooCommerce”.

Chris said a platform is needed in “Building Your Platform with WooCommerce and Sensei”.

Nathan Barryauthor ofAuthority, and Founder and Designer ofConvertKit, advised how to Build a Profitable Audience. You could learn the techniques to build and grow a profitable blog. Including, selling your own products for the highest profit margin, using email marketing to increase conversions, and using perfect pricing to triple revenue.

Day of specific concern Shop Manager and Developer

At #WooConf two main topics were covered, regarding two WooCommerce’s biggest stakeholders.

Deepak Nadig, Head of API Platform Engineering at PayPal started the day with a presentation introducing PayPal and how it enables the future of money.

After that the participant divided into two tracks, Shop Manager track and Developer track. Each track was workshop, with several presentations and sharing.

At developer track, Propress’s Founder Brent join with Max Rice and Justin Stern of SkyVerge to run a workshop on WooJutsu: WooCommerce Extension Development. It walked the participants through the development of WooCommerce extensions.

Later Brian Richardsran a developer session on how to Do More With WooCommerce.

Meanwhile shop manager track seemed to attract more audiences. Bob DunnandMatty Cohenran a workshop on How to Properly Set Up Your WooCommerce Shop where tips and tricks were shared. Ned Dwyerdelivered a workshop involving working through ways to help your WooCommerce customers build their businesses online, and how this can translate to more revenue for your business.

Wrapping Up

The first #WooConf deemed to a successful event, all the participant enjoyed their experience: the presentations, workshops and especially the opportunity to meet up with fellow WooCommerce users.

It’s such a pity that we couldn’t join the fun! Don’t worry, WooThemes said they would upload the record of all sessions, so in case you need to update your knowledge, you know where to go.

by Chau Cao

Chau is an ordinary person who occasionally has extraordinary thoughts. People often find her innovative, helpful and knowledgeable but most of the time, weird. Deep down she is just an introvert sarcastic foodaholic with a big heart (and stomach) and an open mind. Chau loves writing as much as spending a rainy afternoon with her cat and a cup of tea.

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