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WP Lookout Lets WordPress Users Track and Receive Notifications for Their Preferred Plugins and …

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Should WordPress notify users of plugin ownership changes? That was the question that Ian Atkins asked two months ago. WP Tavern readers seemed to think it was a good idea, at least those who commented on our coverage of it. However, the original Trac ticket has not seen any movement since.

There are real technical issues with automating the process. A change of ownership does not necessarily equate to a change of the plugin author. This is often the case when someone acquires a company and maintains the brand.

Tracking such changes does not necessarily need to go through WordPress. Chris Hardie built a service called WP Lookout that notifies users of such changes and much more. It has also been available since August of 2020.

“WP Lookout watches for interesting changes to the WordPress themes and plugins that someone cares about,” said Hardie. “I created WP Lookout for professional WordPress developers, consultants, and site managers who want to stay more informed about the plugins and themes that they (and their clients) depend on.”

While WP Lookout faces the same challenges with plugin ownership changes, it does have an advantage. It also tracks WordPress news organizations, including WP Tavern and Post Status. Even if the ownership change is not reflected on the plugin’s WordPress.org page, the story may be picked up in the news.

Hardie launched the news-tracking feature in early December 2020. It includes the Wordfence vulnerabilities blog and iThemes vulnerabilities roundup blog as a part of the service’s security notification system. The service also scans change logs for keywords related to security.

Notifications do not stop there. The WP Lookout tracks plugin, theme, and core WordPress updates. It also supports several commercial plugins such as Advanced Custom Fields Pro, Gravity Forms, and WP Rocket.

“When we first decide to use a theme or plugin on a WordPress site, we hopefully research it thoroughly — code quality, ratings, support responsiveness, new release history, speed of security fixes, and so on — but once it’s installed it’s easy to neglect those important bits of ‘health’ information over time,” said Hardie. “Auto-updates are great from many perspectives, but I think anyone who has had to manage and troubleshoot a non-trivial WordPress site over time knows that it’s also important to stay aware of, for example, what’s happening in the change log or whether ownership of a plugin has changed hands. But nobody wants to log in to wp-admin on a bunch of sites every week to gather that info.”

Hardie said WP Lookout will always have a robust free option for people who just want a daily email notification for a handful of plugins and themes. However, there are paid tiers for customers to access more features. They allow users to track more plugins and themes and get immediate alerts through email, RSS, Slack, or custom webhooks.

“The middle tier supports up to 50 themes/plugins, immediate email notifications, and a personalized RSS feed,” he said. “The Builder tier supports up to 200 themes/plugins and adds in Slack and custom webhook support along with the option to just get security-related notifications. With more real-world user feedback, we may adjust what’s in each tier over time.”

All users get access to the Builder tier for a few weeks after signing up. After that, they must subscribe or stick with the free tier features.

How the Service Works

Single plugin tracking history via the WP Lookout website.
Single plugin tracking history.

WP Lookout allows users to search for and add a tracker for individual plugins. The service primarily relies on the public WordPress.org API for getting plugin and theme data. This is the same system that WordPress uses to check to see if updates are available.

“But it also goes beyond what the API offers,” said Hardie. “For example, there’s no standard yet for theme authors to provide .ORG theme change logs, and so that information doesn’t show up when you go to update a theme in wp-admin; you’d have to go poking around in Trac or source files to find it. So WP Lookout follows the trail to the change log details and puts that right in front of you.”

Multiple plugins being tracked via the WP Lookout service.
Active plugin trackers.

There is also a WP Lookout plugin available in the plugin directory. It uses an API key, which users can get from the WP Lookout website. The plugin then lets the WP Lookout service know what plugins and themes are installed and adds them as trackers. Using the plugin is far more efficient than manually adding individual plugins and themes.

For plugins and themes that are not on WordPress.org, the service uses custom update APIs provided by the third-party developers. If that is not sufficient, it uses webpage scraping. For news sources, it parses RSS feeds.

“It’s been interesting to see the wide variety of ways that WordPress theme and plugin authors do or don’t manage and present data publicly about their products,” said Hardie. “Some have API endpoints that return the same level of detail as the .ORG API, others have change log/version documents generated by some internal tools, and still others don’t bother doing much at all. I think an argument could be made to standardize on something here for the long-run to help boost the culture of keeping software updated, even/especially if it eventually makes the need for a tool like WP Lookout obsolete.”

The Future of WP Lookout

Hardie has no plans of sitting on what he has already built. One of the next goals is regularly adding new themes and plugins that are not on WordPress.org. This will mean connecting with development teams and figuring out how users can get notifications of things that often have no public APIs. The lack of standardization in the space could be a tough hurdle to jump.

“I have a long list of features I’m planning to add, including things like integrating tracking GitHub repo releases, bringing some helpful data points from WP Lookout into the wp-admin interface, WordPress Packagist integration, allowing per-tracker Slack channel configurations, better internationalization, and better handling of change logs that theme/plugin authors chose to maintain outside of their .org code repositories,” he said.

Hardie does not want to get too far ahead of himself with feature ideas. He said he is excited to get more feedback from users about what they find useful. Currently, there are 80 users, which is publicly available data. WP Lookout maintains an open data and financial transparency page.

“Despite having paid options for more advanced users, I mostly think of this as a service I want to operate for the WordPress community, and I’ll always have a robust set of free functionality,” he said. “I’m also committed to participation in Five for the Future, bringing what I’ve learned here back into improvements that might benefit all WordPress users, whether they take advantage of WP Lookout or not.”

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Setary – Bulk edit WooCommerce products in a spreadsheet environment

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Introducing Setary – a powerful bulk product and variation editor for WooCommerce. Streamline your product management, edit prices, SKUs, and attributes in bulk, and make your store more efficient.

Launched in SaaS, WordPress, E-Commerce

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The Cost to Build a WordPress Website

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WPLift.com has been running for many years now. In all that time, the question of how much it costs to build a WordPress website is one that we’ve received more than any other. 

The short answer is that it costs between $30.86 and $1,195 to build a basic WordPress website. 

There’s obviously a huge difference between those two figures, which is why the real, much longer answer, is that it all depends on what type of website you want to create. 

If you’re starting a blog, for example, then that’s probably going to cost you much less than starting an eCommerce store, while launching a basic company website for your new startup will likewise come with its own unique costs involved. 

Sound confusing?

It doesn’t have to be. In this complete WordPress website cost breakdown, we’ll outline all of the essentials you’re going to need to create any kind of website to help you set an accurate budget for your project. 

How Much Does WordPress Hosting Cost? 

$23 – $86 Per Year

Regardless of whether you’re a blogger, online store owner, or startup, building a successful website of any kind starts with a solid and reliable web hosting package. 

This hosting plan is where you’ll store all of the files that make up your new site so that visitors can access them via their web browser. 

There are countless web hosting companies out there, and, as such, prices can vary dramatically. 

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Siteground is one of our favorite cheap web hosting providers. Their plans start at just $1.99 per month which works out at $23.88 per year. 

At the opposite end of the scale, an entry-level plan from Cloudways will cost $7.20 per month or $86.40 per year.
You can find more options in our guide to the best managed WordPress hosts.

How Much Does a Domain Name Cost?

$6.98 – $10.99+ Per Year

namecheap web hosting

Along with your hosting, you’re also going to need a domain name to direct people to your website. 

Most standard dot-com domain names will cost somewhere between $6 – $12 for the first year.

At Namecheap, for example, you can snap up a domain for 12 months at a cost of $6.98 while domains.com currently charges $10.99 per year

It’s worth keeping in mind that other Top Level Domains (TLDs) such as .org, .net, and .info are usually priced differently.

Typical costs for common TLDs include: 

  • .Net – $12.99 p/y
  • .Org – $8.99 p/y
  • .Store – $9.99 p/y
  • .Blog – $6.99 p/y
  • .Info – $3.99.

Premium Domains: What You Need to Know

If you search for a domain name and find that the asking price is significantly higher than the $6 – $12 quoted above, there’s a good chance that this is a premium domain. 

Premium domains are those domains that have been purchased by a company or individual domain investor to make a profit from them. These domain names are usually short, catchy, and easy to remember which makes them highly sought-after. Thus, a domain investor can charge hundreds, if not thousands of dollars, to part with it. 

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How to Save Money on Hosting and Domains 

To help you keep your costs down, you may want to look for a web hosting provider that also doubles as a domain registrar. 

Hosting companies like Hostinger and Bluehost offer a free one-year domain registration when you buy a hosting plan from them. 

Though you’ll still have to pay for your domain after that first year is up, this can be a major help if you’re planning to launch your site on a shoestring budget. 

An additional benefit to this is that your domain will automatically be connected to your new website, saving you the time and hassle of configuring name servers manually. 

How Much Does WordPress Actually Cost? 

$0

wordpress install

Now that you’ve got your hosting and domain name set up, it’s time to install WordPress. 

The good news is that since WordPress is open-source software, it doesn’t cost you anything to use. 

You can download WordPress and install it on your hosting server free of charge. 

Even better, pretty much all major hosting companies come with what’s known as “one-click installation,” which is exactly what it sounds like: 

Execute one click on the WordPress button in your hosting dashboard, and this will launch an installation wizard which takes you through the entire process with no technical ability required on your part. 

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Since this is part of your hosting package, it’s also free of charge. 

How Much Do WordPress Themes Cost? 

$0 – $175

astra wordpress themes cost

On its own, the default WordPress theme is rather basic and uninspiring. This is why the majority of users will shop around to find a theme that suits the type of site they want to create and does a great job of presenting their content in a way that’s attractive to visitors. 

If your budget is tight, you’ll be pleased to know that there are countless free WordPress themes available to use. 

While these themes are typically great for starter sites, most will restrict access to certain features that you can only access if you pay for the upgraded, premium version of that theme. 

To give you an example, Astra is one of the most popular free themes out there and is packed full of quality templates and tools that any novice WordPress user can take advantage of to put together a fantastic website. 

However, many of the theme’s best templates, along with features such as custom background styling and the ability to create custom 404 pages are only available to users who pay between $44 and $175 for one of the Astra Pro plans. 

If you’re looking for a premium theme that’s a little more affordable, ThemeForest by Envato regularly has professional-grade WordPress themes available for between $30 – $60. 

How Much Does an SSL Certificate for WordPress Cost?

$0 – $117 Per Year

SSL certificate cost for wordpress

An SSL certificate is an essential component of any website as it provides extra security for your visitors, helps to inspire confidence among those visitors, and also appeals to Google’s algorithms which determine where your site ranks in search results. 

Some hosting and domain companies will offer a free SSL certificate. We also put together this guide on the best places to a free SSL certificate

However, free SSL certificates typically only offer a basic level of protection. 

For greater protection, you may want to invest in buying an SSL certificate. 

Companies such as the aforementioned Namecheap offer premium SSLs from as little as $5.99 per year to $117 per year. 

To help you understand which option is right for you, we put together this complete beginner’s guide to SSL certificates.

How Much Do WordPress Security Plugins Cost?

$0 – $499 per year

sucuri wordpress security plugins cost

While an SSL certificate can help to protect your site, you’ll also benefit from installing a WordPress security plugin to ensure you have adequate protection against threats such as malware and brute force attacks.  

One of the best tools for this particular task is Sucuri which is available in both free and paid-for versions. 

The free version of Sucuri comes with solid WordPress hardening features, an excellent malware scanner, and tools to get your site back on track if you’ve already been hacked. 

However, it doesn’t offer a firewall. Nor does the free version include other 

useful features such as done-for-you malware removal, and DDoS (Domain Denial of Service) attack prevention.

To access those features, you’ll need to upgrade to one of Sucuri’s premium plans. 

These cost between $199 and $499 per year depending on your requirements. 

To compare prices with similar tools, take a look at the options included in our list of the best WordPress security plugins

How Much Does it Cost to Start an Online Store with WordPress?

cost to start an online store with wordpress

If you’re planning to use your WordPress site to run an eCommerce business, you’ll need to use WooCommerce. This is a popular plugin that provides all of the basic essentials for an online store such as: 

  • Product pages
  • Shopping cats
  • Checkout pages
  • Flat Rate shipping.

The good news is that this is completely free, so building a basic online store won’t actually cost you anything. 

However, as you’ll read in our ultimate guide to WooCommerce, there are some additional features that you may need. These include: 

Shipping – From  $0 to $99

woocommerce shipping add-ons

The basic WooCommerce plugin allows you to set flat shipping rates as well as offer free shipping or local pickup from a physical location.

However, if your shopping requirements are more complex than that (for example, you want to offer different shipping rates based on location, product size, or order volume), you’ll need to install one of the many WooCommerce shipping add-ons that are available

The WooCommerce Table Rate Shipping add-on allows you to set multiple shipping rates depending on certain conditions. 

This will cost you $99.

You can also access shipping add-ons that connect you directly to services such as USPS and FedEx so that you access the best domestic and international shipping rates for your sold items in real time. 

These plugins currently cost $47.40 each from the WooCommerce store. 

Payment Gateways – $0 – $30 p/m (plus 2.9% + $0.30c per transaction)

free woocommerce payments add-on

A critical part of any online store is the payment gateway which allows you to collect payments from your customers. 

Here, you have multiple options to choose from, the best of which include: 

WooCommerce payments – $0 

WooCommerce Payments is a free add-on that allows you to accept payments via credit and debit cards.

PayPal – $0 

This free add-on makes it easy to accept PayPal payments. Customers can also be directed to the PayPal website to pay with a credit or debit card. 

PayPal Pro – $30 p/m

If you want to offer customers the most seamless checkout process, directing them away from your site to the PayPal platform may not be ideal. 

In that case, you can upgrade to PayPal Pro which allows you to use PayPal to accept card payments directly from your website. 

Stripe – $0 

With Stripe for WooCommerce, you can accept payments via debit and credit cards as well as local payments.

Authorize.Net – $25 p/m

Authorize.Net gives you the ability to accept all major payment types for one-off purchases, pre-orders, and subscriptions.

All four of these platforms offer the same transaction fees of 2.9% plus $0.30c per transaction. 

How Much Does it Cost to Add Contact Forms to WordPress?

$0 – $179

cost to add contact forms to wordpress

Whether you’re launching an online store, a blog, or a business website, it’s important that visitors have a way to get in touch with you if they have comments, questions, or complaints. 

The easiest way to do this is to use one of the best WordPress contact form plugins to add a contact form and manage any messages you receive via that form. 

Of all the countless contact form tools out there, WPForms remains among the best of the best. 

For budget-conscious WordPress users, the free version of this plugin, WPForms Lite comes with an intuitive drag-and-drop builder that makes it easy to create basic contact forms and configure options such as what happens after users complete the form (for example, seeing a ‘Thank You’ message or being redirected to another page).

If you need more than that, prices for WPForms Pro run from $49.50 to $179.70 and include additional features such as: 

  • Subscription forms
  • Payment collection forms and integrations with payment services such as Stripe, Paypal, and Square
  • File uploads
  • Advanced form fields
  • Multi-page forms
  • Surveys 
  • Newsletter forms
  • Integration with top email newsletter plugins such as MailChimp and Sendinblue.

Calculating the Cost of Building a WordPress  Website: A Few Final Things to Consider 

We started this guide by noting that the cost to build a WordPress website can run anywhere from as low as $30.86 to as much as $1,115

If you read everything that followed, we hope you’ve seen how we came to those figures. If not, it really was as simple as calculating all the lowest possible prices we could find (including zero-cost options) and then doing the same thing again with the highest prices. 

The figure that you’re most likely to pay will largely depend on the type of site you’re creating. We should also state that these are the fundamentals. We have not included the cost of content development such as copywriting. However, as this can technically be done by the website owner, we’ve not factored this as a cost.

If you’re planning to launch a simple blog to share your thoughts with the world, for example, you could probably get away with spending $23.88 per year on hosting from Siteground and $6.98 for a dot-com domain name from Namecheap and then relying solely on free themes and plugins to build and manage your site. 

If you’re starting a website to promote your new business, you may want to invest in things like paid security plugins and SSL certificates which will up the cost to between $100 – $300. 

However, if you’re going all out to create an all-singing, all-dancing eCommerce store, you’ll not only want top-level security and eCommerce-optimized web hosting, but you’ll also want to consider shipping and payment gateways too. All told, this could easily push the cost of your WordPress website to the top end of the pricing scale. 
Not that it always has to be so expensive. For ideas on how you can save money when creating your website, check out our detailed guide to the best free WordPress plugins to use for your new site.





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Your Quick Guide in 2023

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Your Quick Guide in 2023

Selling digital downloads is a great way to earn some passive income from a one-time investment in creating an ebook, audio file, webinar, and more. You can make decent money by automating the process without having to fulfill every order on your own. All you have to do is learn how to sell digital downloads on WordPress. 

Fortunately, selling your new files is a piece of cake. All you really need are a few easy-to-use tools. Depending on your needs, you can choose one from this list of the top plugins for WordPress sites that cater to a digital download model.

In this article, we walk you through the step-by-step instructions to help you start selling digital downloads in less than an hour. And if your product is already created and ready to go, this article is for you! 

Let’s dive in.

Plugins to Sell Digital Downloads on WordPress 

The easiest way to sell digital downloads on WordPress is through a robust plugin. Once your site is set up and hosted, you can easily venture over to the plugin library and browse the options. 

To make your decision easier, we have included this handy guide to the top plugins that you should consider. 

Easy Digital Downloads

Perhaps the most highly recommended plugin to help you sell digital downloads on WordPress is Easy Digital Downloads. It might be a little more expensive than some of the other options on the market, but it’s well worth the expense if you’re serious about your digital products. 

Not to mention, it has a free option that will likely give you all the tools you need to start to sell downloads with minimal hassle. 

On the front end, it is extremely user-friendly and takes just minutes to set up (we’ll cover how to do this in the second half of this article). In fact, you will find that once your digital product has already been created, you can get it ready to download for your customer in less than a half hour — even less if you’re particularly savvy with WordPress’s web hosting control panel. 

It allows you to take credit card payments using most of the major gateways, including Stripe, Apple Pay, Google Pay, and even PayPal. 

Pros


  • Takes just a few minutes to set up
  • Works with most payment processors
  • Easy to set up payment gateway
  • Can add whole pages into your menu or use shortcode to embed the cart
  • Compatible with all WordPress themes

Cons


  • Can be a bit expensive for users who are just getting started (except for free version)
  • No lifetime sales option (only annual subscriptions)

Pricing: Easy Digital Downloads starts at $99.50 per year and scales to $499.50 per year depending on how many sites you use it for and the features included. 

You can also try it out on the free version. We will use that in the latter half of this article as we walk you through the steps to upload digital downloads onto your web hosting account. 

WooCommerce Checkout for Digital Goods

This plugin might be a better fit if you are already using WooCommerce on your site. It allows you to keep things simple by only using a single type of checkout process, regardless of whether you are selling physical products or digital ones. 

One of the benefits of the WooCommerce Checkout for Digital Goods is that streamlines the checkout process for your customers. While some plugins require customers to enter a shipping address, this one bypasses it because it understands that it is unnecessary when sales tax doesn’t need to be calculated. 

Check out our full WooCommerce review to see if this is right for you and your site. 

Pros


  • Streamlined checkout process
  • Allows for digital products ranging from PDFs and music to ebooks and audio
  • Robust free version
  • Minimal setup required

Cons


May need to upgrade to Pro to get more advanced features

Pricing: You can try the WooCommerce plugin for free, but a subscription to the premium membership will set you back about $29 per year. This isn’t bad, considering how robust the software can be. 

Stripe Green Downloads

Website owners who are concerned about customers paying for the digital download might prefer to trust one of the leading payment processors: Stripe. The Stripe Green Downloads plugin for WordPress makes it a cinch to accept all major credit cards, but you can also do free digital products as well. 

With this plugin, your customers will get encrypted download links valid for a certain length of time (set by you). 

Pros


  • Integration with the well-known Stripe platform
  • Encrypted download links
  • Email verification to you and the customer after successful payment
  • Available for multisite installation

Cons


Might be more challenging to set up and use

Pricing: If you only want your customers to access free downloadable files, Stripe Green Downloads is just $19. If you plan to sell digital products for a fee, it is $95. 

WordPress Simple PayPal Shopping Cart

Website owners who want a free option to round out their online store will want to consider whether PayPal has the solution they need. The WordPress Simple PayPal Shopping Cart gives you the flexibility to include an “add to cart” button on any page. You will guide your readers through making their cart and then take payment through the highly trusted PayPal platform. 

When finished with the transaction, buyers will get an email with a link to their new digital files. 

Pros


  • Very lightweight solution to keep your site running smoothly
  • Affordable for a highly trusted name in payment gateways
  • Compatible with any type of digital download (PDF, ebook, mp3, audio, etc.)
  • Create coupons to help sell digital downloads faster

Cons


  • Takes a few more steps to set up selling digital downloads

Pricing: Enjoy selling digital files for your website with this free plugin. 

How to Use Easy Digital Downloads Plugin 

If you have made it this far, chances are that you already have a WordPress website ready for your downloadable files. We will assume that you already have a page designated for your digital downloads as we walk through how to use the Easy Digital Downloads system. 

On the other hand, here is more information on starting a WordPress site if you aren’t at this point yet: Best WordPress courses to help you get started.

Installing the App

From the lefthand sidebar on your WordPress dashboard, navigate to the plugins section and select “add new.” 

Type in “easy digital downloads” in the search bar to pull up the free plugin and select “install.” 

When it is finished downloading, you will select the “activate” button that appears in the same spot where the “install” button once showed. This will get you set up for the plugin and allow you to get started with selling digital downloads in the next step. 

You will know when the plugin is active because it will pop up with a new option on your sidebar titled “Downloads.” 

Settings

Before you can start to sell digital products, you will need to configure the settings on your new plugin. Here are a few of the things that you will need to modify prior to selling. 

Address

First, you will have to update the settings for your digital downloads, including the physical address for your store. Even if you don’t have a storefront in your city, the address listed here is used to calculate sales tax if and when necessary. 

Once you have filled out the information, click “save changes” at the bottom of the screen. 

Payments

While you are on the settings screen, you will need to configure your payment settings. This may not be as important if you are only selling free digital downloads, but you want to fill it out if you will be selling digital products on your website. 

Easy Digital Downloads makes it simple to accept payments from the gateways of your choosing. Active payment gateways include: 

  • Stripe
  • PayPal
  • Store gateway
  • Amazon

As a bonus, you can even select a default gateway that automatically populates for your customers. This means that you can choose the gateway that charges you the fewest fees for your product or service, hoping that your customer will not think to change it. 

Click on “save changes” when finished with this screen. 

Configure PayPal or Stripe

However, you aren’t quite done setting up your payment processors yet. Depending on what options you select, you may need to head to another tab. For instance, PayPal and Stripe both have separate tabs that you will need to visit if you intend to accept payments using these methods. 

Click on the appropriate tab for the payments you plan to accept. 

From here, it will walk you through how to connect your new payment platform with your website. Stripe takes a little bit longer to set up than PayPal does, but both are relatively user-friendly and take just a few clicks of the mouse to get where you want to go. 

Don’t forget to select “save changes” at the bottom of the screen when finished with each page. 

Adding a Digital Product 

Now that you have the foundation laid to start to sell digital products, it is time to focus your attention on actually creating your digital product. This requires just a few steps and is easy even for users who are just getting used to their WordPress website.

Here is a quick look at how you can add your digital downloads to your store. 

  • On the left sidebar from your WordPress dashboard, select “downloads” again. 
  • Next to the header on the new page, you will see the button that says “add new.” Click here. 
  • Enter a title for your digital downloads at the top of the screen. 
  • Fill out the description information, which is what your site visitors will see about your file when they visit this screen. 
  • Underneath this section, you will see the option to set a price for your digital download. You can leave this section as-is (the default setting is $0.00 or free) if you intend to use it for a lead magnet to drive sales for your store. However, you can also set it up to charge a fair price for the download of your digital products. 
  • After entering the price, you will need to actually upload your digital downloads for your customers to review. You’re almost there! Under the price section, you will see “Download Files.” Enter the name of your new product and then enter the URL or upload the file. 
  • If you are uploading it, simply click the link icon to the right of the box and it will give you a popup where you can select a download from the media library or upload a new one. 

Set Up Yoast

If you are also using Yoast SEO (and we recommend that you do!), you can configure the page to match up with your other SEO efforts. Add in a keyword, alter the meta description, and even set the slug for the page. 

Business owners who intend to advertise their new digital download on social media may want to select the social media tab on Yoast, upload an image that represents their new offer, and change the description for social posts. 

Publish Your Digital Downloads

Once you finish with all of the setup wizard on this screen, you can officially publish your product! Head up to the top of the page and in the upper right-hand corner, you will see the telltale blue button that allows you to “Publish” your new product. 

That’s all you have to do to create a page that allows you to sell a digital download! 

Add Your Download to a Webpage

Sometimes, you may want to consider adding your digital downloads to the menu of your website. This allows it to be more easily found. After all, nobody is going to know how to click through your link if they don’t even know it exists. Fortunately, there are just a few extra clicks involved to get that digital product onto your website menu. 

Navigate to the dashboard home and select “Appearances” on the left-hand side. Click “Menus” to get started. 

You will see several categories pop up on the left side. Scroll down to the third option, titled “downloads.” Click the box next to the download that you would like to add to your menu and then click on “add to menu.”

This will move it over to the screen on the right, where you can rearrange your pages until they make sense to you. 

Using Shortcode

Alternatively, you may not want to create an entire page for your new lead magnet or download. In this case, you may instead prefer to place the download on another page. You may even show it on your blog posts that advertise the download. The good news is that you have another option if this describes you. 

  • Open up your download product page and click the gear icon at the top of the screen. 
  • Scroll down until you get to the “download settings” section. 
  • At the bottom of this download files section, you will find the “purchase shortcode.” Copy this shortcode. 
  • Next, on the page where you want to sell downloads on WordPress, add a block of shortcode. Paste this description in the box and save. 

This will make learning how to sell digital downloads on WordPress quick and easy from any page of your website. 

Tracking Results and Downloads on WordPress

Once you have your download uploaded and organized on your website with Easy Digital Downloads, you need to start tracking it. This allows you to uncover how many people are accessing your page, clicking the download option, and more. 

The easiest way to track your results is to download MonsterInsights. Head over to your MonsterInsights dashboard and click on the e-commerce tab. You will see an option for Easy Digital Downloads here and check the box. 

All you have to do is head to “Insights” > “Reports” > “eCommerce”. This allows you to see how your digital products are faring in the marketplace. 

The Verdict: How to Sell Digital Downloads on WordPress

Selling physical products is mostly a thing of the past for people looking to set up more passive income streams. If you want to sell digital goods to your audience but don’t want to be responsible for fulfilling all those orders on your own, you need software that will automate the process for you. 

Easy Digital Downloads offers just that. But it isn’t the only option if you want to sell digital downloads on WordPress. Consider some of the other top WordPress plugins on our list to expand your payment gateway and make your checkout page a breeze. 

If you don’t already have a WordPress website set up, then you may want to consider how you can start today. Learn more about setting up your site in some of these articles here: 



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