How to Build an Online Store in Less Than 1 Hour

Looking to build an online store and sell products over the Internet?

Creating an eCommerce store isn’t as difficult as it once was. Many platforms are available that let you set up your store and sell without any prior expertise or technical skills.

And with the combination of Elementor, WooCommerce, and the Astra theme, you can do it easily.

In this post, we’ll show you how you can build an online store in less than 1 hour.

What Do You Need to Start an Online Store?

To start an online store, you’ll need the following things:

  • A domain name idea
  • A web hosting account
  • WordPress Theme like Astra
  • WordPress page builders like Elementor
  • WooCommerce plugin
  • Your undivided attention for 1 hour

Yes, it is that easy.

You can create an online store using the following things in just 1 hour, and we’ll help you through the steps.

Step 1: Buy a Web Hosting and Domain Name

If you’re new to the website-building process, let me first explain what domain name and web hosting are.

A domain name is the internet address for your website, such as Pickupwp.com.

While a domain name is your website’s address, hosting is where your site is hosted.

Basically, web hosting is storage for all of your website’s files. Visitors can access your site once they’ve been stored there. As a result, selecting good eCommerce hosting is a critical step in starting your online business.

Apart from domain name and web hosting, you will also need an SSL certificate for your online store.

When visitors visit your website, data is exchanged between your server and their browsers. If a hacker intercepts this data, they can misuse it.

To avoid this, you must install an SSL certificate. This will encrypt any data transferred to and from your website.

If you run an online store, this is a must because you will be managing sensitive data such as client payment details, shipping prices, and contact information.

To avoid a data breach, you must ensure that your website is secure.

A better way to get these three things in one package is through Bluehost. It is the top web hosting provider on the market and is even officially recommended by WordPress.org.

Step 2: Install WordPress – Build an Online Store

Now that you have your domain name and hosting ready, you can start installing WordPress software.

Don’t be worried if this seems like a difficult step. Using a hosting service like Bluehost will make the process much easier.

When you buy a hosting package from the best WordPress hosting providers, you’ll get the WordPress Auto-Install option.

To start, go to Bluehost.com and select the Login option from the top menu. After that, log in to your hosting account using the email address and password you received earlier.

Bluehost Login

When you log in, the Bluehost dashboard will look like this. To create a WordPress site, go to the sidebar and select My Sites.

Bluehost Dashboard

Now, click the Create Site button in the top-right corner. After that, enter your Site Name and Tagline before clicking Next.

Create New WordPress Site

After that, you’ll need to select a domain. Select the domain name you chose when you created your Bluehost account from the drop-down under the Domain field and click Next.

Choose Bluehost Domain

That’s it. Bluehost will now install WordPress for you automatically. Just wait till it’s finished, then save your login details.

Step 3: Log Into WordPress Dashboard

Fortunately, Bluehost and some other top WordPress providers provide a direct link to your site’s login page.

When you click the Log into WordPress button, you will be sent directly to your WordPress dashboard.

Log Into WordPress From Bluehost

However, you might not want to log into your hosting account each time you want to use WordPress. So there is another option: the WordPress login URL.

A WordPress login URL is your domain name followed by /wp-login.php. Your login URL should look like this: https://example.com/wp-login.php. Change example.com with your domain name and enter it into your browser. Then you’ll see the WordPress login page.

WordPress Login Form

After that, enter the WordPress login credentials you received earlier.

Following that, you’ll be able to access your WordPress Dashboard, where you may manage your website. The dashboard looks like the image below.

WordPress Dashboard

Step 4: Install Astra Theme and Starter Templates

Many free and premium WordPress themes are available to help you create an eye-catching online presence.

But the one eCommerce theme we recommended is Astra. This theme was developed by Brainstorm Force and used by over more than 1+ million users.

Astra WordPress Theme

Astra also works beautifully with page builders such as Beaver Builder, Thrive Architect, Elementor, Divi Builder, Brizy, etc.

Furthermore, the Astra theme is highly customizable and has many outstanding features.

Here are some best features of the Astra theme:

  • Super fast performance
  • Page builder integration
  • User-friendly interface
  • WooCommerce theme compatibility
  • Accessibility ready
  • SEO friendly markup
  • Translation and RTL ready
  • 100% open source

To install Astra, go to Appearance » Theme » Add New. Search for Astra, click Install, and Activate.

After installing Astra, you’ll see this message on your dashboard:

Astra Success Message

Now, click on Get Started button. This will install Astra Starter Sites for you.

Getting Started with Starter Templates

Once you activate the Starter Templates plugin, you’ll see a new page in the Appearance menu called Starter Templates. Simply click on it.

Next, you’ll be asked to select a page builder from Elementor, Beaver Builder, or Block Editor.

Once you select the page builder, on the next page, you will see available templates of the page builder you chose. Currently, there are more than 280+ pre-made full website templates available.

Select Page Builder for Your Templates

For this tutorial, we will use the Custom Printing template because it looks amazing and is very e-commerce oriented.

After you’ve selected your template, you’ll be asked to upload a logo and adjust its width. If you don’t have a logo right now, you can also upload it later. Simple click on Skip & Continue button.

Choose Logo and Adjust Logo Width

Next, you will be asked to choose colors and fonts for your site. If default colors and fonts are good for you, click on Continue. Or, you can update them anytime later.

Change Color And Fonts for Your Templates

Finally, you can provide your personal information and check the Advanced Options checkboxes. Checking this box will install all of the required plugins for the theme to look exactly the way it is. For the Custom Printing theme, it will install Elementor, WooCommerce, and WPForms. This will save you some time because you won’t have to install these plugins one by one anymore.

Enter Personal Information

Simply click on Submit & build My Website Button.

Importing the theme may take a while. Don’t close your browser or hit refresh.

Installing Template

When it’s done, you’ll see a success screen with the View Your Website button. Click on that button will take you to the website theme that you just imported.

Step 5: Customizing Your Website With Elementor

As we mentioned before, we are using Elementor in this tutorial. Elementor is the best drag-and-drop page builder for WordPress. However, you can use any page builder that you’re comfortable with.

Elementor Page Builder

You can do almost anything with your website inside Elementor without coding or paying a web developer. Adding elements is as easy as drag and drop.

Simply go to the page that you want to edit and click Edit with elementor on the black bar at the top:

Edit with Elementor Button

Here you’ll be able to use different images for your heading, change texts, change icons, and more. You can start by changing the text and image in the heading to suit your business.

Editing Text in Elementor

You’ll notice that you can change the text right in the content editing area and change the size, color, and typography family. Additionally, you can use animations like simple fades, zooming, and more. You may do many things to spice up your website here.

You can also edit the buttons’ text, customize the testimonials area, and add new elements/blocks such as texts, images, buttons, videos, and more within Elementor.

Elementor Pro includes many more features, such as the ability to add forms, upload your own fonts, add sliders, add price tables and price lists, personalize your headers and footers (which most page builders do not allow), and much more.

Step 6: Set up WooCommerce – Build an Online Store

It’s time to set up WooCommerce, the best WordPress eCommerce plugin that turns any website into an online store. It lets you add products, accept online payments, create coupons, set shipping and taxation, and much more.

WooCommerce WordPress eCommerce Plugin

WooCommerce was already installed for you by the Custom Print Astra Site theme, so now you have to go in and set it up. If you don’t have WooCommerce installed yet, just go to Plugins » Add New and search for WooCommerce. For more in detail, see our guide on how to install a plugin in WordPress.

The first action that you need to do is go to WooCommerce » Settings. You will see seven tabs: General, Products, Shipping, Payments, Accounts & Privacy, Emails, and Advanced.

General Tab

In this tab, You can set your store address, which countries you will sell and ship to, and enable tax rates.

If you scroll down, you’ll notice options to allow coupons and configure how prices are shown on your website, such as currency, location, etc.

WooCommerce General Settings

Products Tab

In this tab, you can set product-related options. You may choose which page will be your Shop page, what happens when users add a product to their cart, specify product dimensions, and more.

WooCommerce Product Settings

You will also have inventory and downloadable product options.

If you check the box next to Enable stock management in the Inventory section, you’ll see a list of options for maintaining your inventory.

The Downloaded products section is only necessary if you sell downloadable content on your website; if you just sell physical products, you may skip this one.

Shipping Tab

This is only useful if you’re selling physical products that will be shipped out to buyers. This tab is divided into three sections: shipping zones, shipping options, and shipping classes.

WooCommerce Shipping Options

Payments Tab

This tab allows you to enable or disable payment gateways like PayPal, direct bank transfer, cash on delivery, and more. Once you enable a method, click Finish set up to link your accounts and start accepting payments.

WooCommerce Payments Methods

Accounts & Privacy

This tab lets you configure settings for account creation and user privacy. You can decide whether to allow customers to make purchases without creating an account, customize your privacy and policy pages, and decide how long user data will be stored.

WooCommerce Accounts and Privacy

Emails Tab

The Emails tab is next, and it displays a list of emails that WooCommerce sends automatically based on various conditions.

WooCommerce Emails Notifications

Advanced Tab

Lastly, the Advanced tab lets you configure more technical details like page setups, which allows you to instruct WooCommerce which page will serve as your cart page or checkout page.

WooCommerce Advanced Settings

Step 7: Add Product – Build an Online Store

Once you’ve finished with the basic WooCommerce settings, it’s time to add products. The Astra Site theme we selected in this tutorial already includes sample products, and this is how a product page appears on the front:

Product Page

Let’s see how we can change this and add our own products to the backend.

To add a new product or edit an existing product, go to Products from your WordPress dashboard. You’ll then see a list of all products you have. Simply click on Edit. This will take you directly to the product editor.

Product Editor

This is where you may edit the product title and description. You’ll see a section named Product data if you scroll down. Here, you can select the product type and configure other product settings.

Whenever you create a new product, the first step is to choose its type. Each product type comes with a different set of options. For example, a downloadable product will have these options:

Downloadable Product Options

On the left side of this section, you’ll see more options for General, Inventory, Shipping, and more.

General Tab

In this tab, you should enter the regular price and sale price. When creating a discount campaign, you can use the sale price. Customers in your online store will always see the regular price unless you mark it as a sale.

Product Data General Tab

Inventory Tab

This tab allows you to manage stock properly. You will also find the SKU (Stock Keeping Unit), stock status, and other options. SKU is the product code that identifies stock in lists, invoices, or order forms.

Product Data Inventory Tab

Shipping Tab

This tab allows you to enter the weight and dimensions of the product. Furthermore, the shipping class is an option in which products are grouped depending on weight limits.

Product Data Shipping Tab

Linked Products

This tab lets you add linked products. They will increase your store’s revenue through upsells and cross-sells.

Linked Product

Attributes

This tab allows you to add product color variations, sizes, and so much more. It depends on how many attributes your product will have.

Product Data Attributes

Advanced

In this tab, you can add a purchase message that appears after a customer places an order in your store.

Product Data Advanced Tab

You can also check the checkbox to enable customer reviews.

After finishing the product data section, scroll down to the Product short description box.

Here, you can enter your product’s short description, which will show on your single product page below the product price. Keep it short and sweet.

Product Short Description

On the right sidebar, you can select your Product image and Product categories. If you have more product images, you can add those in the Product gallery section.

Product image and Categories

Once you’re done with everything here, click Update to save all your changes.

Step 8: Customize Your Checkouts

WooCommerce is a fantastic plugin, but one of the most common complaints is the lack of checkout options. You won’t be able to customize the checkout pages, and you won’t be able to build a sales funnel with it.

A sales funnel an excellent way to boost a customer’s purchase value, so if you don’t have one on your website, you’re losing money.

If you want to create a sales funnel for your e-commerce website, the best plugin that can help is CartFlows. It’s a funnel builder WordPress plugin that allows you to design attractive and extremely successful funnels directly within WordPress.

CartFlows

For more in detail, check out our article on how to build a sales funnel in WordPress.

Conclusion – Build an Online Store

Astra, Elementor, and WooCommerce are triple-threats that let you build an online store in minutes without writing a single line of code.

Remember, all you need to do is:

  • Install and configure WooCommerce
  • Import an Astra demo site
  • Customize your store via Astra’s real-time Customizer settings
  • Edit your homepage and other core pages with the Elementor page builder

That’s It! You can build an online store using the following things in just 1 hour.