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WooCommerce Holiday Preparations

There’s been a whole slew of blog posts on the official WooCommerce Blog related to holiday preparations. Hopefully you’ve been tuned in! I’ll recap many of these tips and add-in a few of my own.

Avoid significant updates

  • WP5 is slated for imminent release. You should hold on major updates like this until after the holidays. Don’t worry – major plugins and themes usually remain compatible with the previous version of WP for a bit.
  • Verify all of your Woo Settings so you don’t have to make any changes during the crunch period.
  • Ensure your domain registration and SSL certificate will remain valid.

Test your store

  • Verify results on your WooCommerce > Status page look acceptable – especially check on any outdated Woo template overrides.
  • Page load speed should be not far over 2 seconds, especially be sure to test at least one of your shop and product pages.
  • Checkout process – ensure everything works for guests, registered customers, stored payments, subscriptions, or anything else on the more complex side.
  • Password resets / emails need to work.
  • Shipping destinations / countries should be examined.
  • Ensure your backups are working and you know how to restore from a disaster.

Optimize your store

  • Ensure you are running PHP 7.0+ and all plugins work with it.
  • Ensure your images have been compressed / optimized.
  • Evaluate your hosting and CDN for scaling of traffic – fully managed WordPress hosting is recommended.
  • Cleanup your database as old cruft slows down your site.
  • Disable any non-essential plugins so your site is as lean as it can be.

Prepare your operations

  • Customer service technical training, having somebody with Woo expertise available at all times.
  • Rate of returns or warranties may increase.
  • Have alternatives for any non cached integrations (payment gateways, shipping calculations, warehousing / fulfillment, accounting / ERP) should they go down or should you hit unexpected limits.
  • Decide what to do about inventory management – if you use this will it be acurate at scale?
  • Reduce emails and ensure your SMTP provider plan allows expected volumes.
  • Withhold all custom code releases unless it’s an emergency fix.

Know who to call

  • Know who is in charge of what in terms of hosting, custom development, and your critical plugin vendors.
  • Ensure your various accounts work so you can open tickets, chats, or calls in a pinch.