WooCommerce recurring order plugins help you launch Amazon-like subscribe and save plans on your store. With these plugins, you can enable subscriptions for your products and give your shoppers two choices for buying. The first is a simple one-time purchase option, with the second one offering a guaranteed discount (anywhere between 5% to 15% of the product value) for subscribing to a certain number of products for a set frequency and period.
Did you know that about half of your current shoppers are already familiar with such subscription models and that about 55% of these aware buyers could seriously consider subscribing to your products?
Now, while the subscription model means predictable growth and revenue, logistics represent a challenge for most B2C businesses that want to implement it. Even B2B businesses that supply to such B2C or D2C businesses run into similar challenges.
That’s why businesses that want to pivot to the subscription model or add it to their selling mix look for ways to automate their recurring orders and subscription management.
Thankfully as a WooCommerce store owner, you can fully automate such WooCommerce recurring orders on your store right from their scheduled payment management to inventory forecasting. In this post, we’ll go over a few plugins to put your WooCommerce recurring orders on autopilot and bring autoshipping to your commerce mix. But before we see those, here are five key tips for choosing a WooCommerce subscription plugin for your store.
What to look for when reviewing WooCommerce recurring order plugins
Keep these pointers in mind when reviewing WooCommerce subscription plugins.
There are many moving parts to a scheduled commerce setup. To start with, your autoshipping solution needs to offer your users their preferred payment gateways (like PayPal, Stripe, etc.) so they can subscribe easily and make their recurring payments automatically. Next, your autoshipping solution should get your inventory’s status at all times. It should also be able to make adjustments on the go as some stocks — especially those for consumables — move fast. Integrations with shipping providers are another essential for a shipping business — after all, that’s how you ensure the best shipping rates for your customers for each delivery. Pay attention to these specifics when evaluating WooCommerce recurring order plugins.
Subscribers look for great subscription experiences when they commit to repeat purchases. So, evaluate if a plugin you’re considering lets your customers edit their subscriptions without having to cancel them and start over? Can they buy products separately from the subscription itself? Can customers decide when their recurring orders arrive? And can they edit their scheduled deliveries or shipping addresses easily?
Does the plugin you’re considering let you add an Amazon-like subscribe and save option directly to your product pages? Can it let you add and promote the subscription upsell on the cart page? Does the plugin give you different discounting rules to reward customer loyalty and implement coupons? Will it let you ship a free sample to your users so they can try before they buy or subscribe? And more. A critical step when choosing WooCommerce recurring order plugins is analyzing how they can support your sales goals.
Based on your subscription business’s model, you’ll be looking at different options for implementing your autoshipping. You might be looking to support different kinds of frequencies/delivery schedules, shipping rules, payment methods, incentive rules, and upselling/cross-selling tools. That’s why looking for the different ways you can set up your subscription orders is essential when choosing WooCommerce subscription plugins. In short: Can your plugin support variable subscriptions for different products? Also, is the plugin easy to use for the admin? Is it intuitive?
To run a successful autoshipping business, you need good reporting that doesn’t just give you the more minor details like the status of each subscription on your store but also offers high-level insights into how your subscriptions are doing, what your average lifetime customer value is, and how you can manage your inventory better, among other things.
In addition to these, check out the support quality. It’s a key differentiator in the WooCommerce recurring order plugins space!
So based on these selection criteria, here are the top five WooCommerce plugins for powering recurring orders on your store.
The 5 best WooCommerce recurring order plugins available right now
|Autoship Cloud for bringing a complete autoshipping solution straight to your physical goods’ WordPress store|
YITH WooCommerce Subscription for selling subscriptions with free trials
WooCommerce Subscriptions for setting up WooCommerce recurring orders for physical and digital products on your WooCommerce store
SUMO Subscriptions for supporting simple WooCommerce recurring orders using PayPal or Stripe
Subscriptio – WooCommerce Subscription for powering simple subscriptions on your store via PayPal or Stripe
Let’s now look at each of your options in detail.
1. Autoship Cloud
Autoship Cloud is an all-in-one WooCommerce subscription plugin that lets you sell your physical goods (everything from meals to home goods) as subscriptions on your WooCommerce store (even wholesale orders).
With Autoship Cloud, you can add a subscribe and save option to your product page and let your users choose between making a one-time purchase or opting for a subscription with guaranteed savings and other offers. Autoship Cloud doesn’t just let you upsell your subscription offers on your product pages, but it brings them to your cart pages as well. Also, Autoship Cloud can turn both your simple and variable products into subscriptions.
Autoship Cloud lets you design flexible delivery schedules for each of your subscribable products and offer varying discounts for each. Moreover, if customers need to change their subscription’s delivery schedule or add or remove items from their upcoming deliveries, they can do so directly from their end (via their accounts page). This simple provision helps fight subscriber churn as users are in control of their subscription experience.
- Lets you add subscribe offers to both your product and cart pages to help you make more upsells.
- Integrates with more than ten payment gateways, including PayPal, Stripe, and Authorize.net, letting your subscribers pay with their preferred payment apps.
- Lets you enable multiple payment methods for your customers.
- Comes with options to set up one-time and recurring coupons to reward loyal subscribers
- Supports multiple ways to configure coupons and offer discounts.
- Lets customers edit their delivery schedules (and pause or stop them), letting them truly own their subscription experience.
- Integrates with ShipperHQ and via it with its 50+ global shipping carriers to offer your users the best shipping rates each time.
- Comes with exportable, detailed reports to find insights into your data so you can make data-backed marketing, sales, and inventory decisions.
- Lets you automate your email notifications (via Sendgrid) over the entire subscription cycle so that your users know when they’ll be charged, among other updates.
- Works on top of your inventory to intelligently manage unavailable/out-of-stock products from scheduled subscriptions.
- Lets users check out even if their cart has both recurring subscriptions and one-time purchases; users don’t need to check out separately.
Autoship Cloud is more than just a plugin to automate WooCommerce recurring orders on your store; it’s a full-blown autoshipping solution for your physical products. Autoship Cloud doesn’t just help you sell more subscriptions and convert your one-time shoppers into lifetime customers but also covers everything from handling recurring payments to streamlining shipping logistics. Plus, you get stellar support. Sign up for a free Autoship Cloud trial; Pricing plans start at $49/month.
2. YITH WooCommerce Subscription
YITH WooCommerce Subscription is another WooCommerce subscription plugin that brings WooCommerce recurring orders to your store. With YITH WooCommerce Subscription, you can offer your users a simple subscribe option while charging a sign up fee (to cover your subscription costs). You can also provide your users a free trial. YITH WooCommerce Subscription works with both physical and digital products and services, so it’s pretty versatile. (You might need YITH WooCommerce Membership, another WooCommerce plugin from the YITH family, to implement some of these recurring sales models.)
However, you can’t easily post both one-time purchase and subscription options on your product pages. You can only publish one option — the subscription plan option — although you can give users different payment schedule options. So you can’t really bring the native Amazon-like subscription experience to your store with this plugin. This is one key drawback of the plugin, especially if that’s the experience you’re looking to offer. (In fact, most of the plugins on this list don’t support such a view easily. Check out their demos to confirm before buying.)
- Lets you offer both manual and automatic subscription payment renewals.
- Supports free trials so your users can try before they subscribe.
- Comes with intelligent retries and means to handle failed payments.
- Integrates with a host of WooCommerce payment methods but doesn’t support Authorize.net (an integration users often miss!).
- Supports automatic email notifications to customers about their subscription status, from payment reminders to failed payment updates.
- Allows you to offer recurring discounts.
- Lets your users switch, pause (with or without limits), and even cancel their plans.
- Comes with some shipping scheduling options to streamline shipping.
Offers detailed reporting to show you your most popular subscriptions, the average monthly income, conversion rates on the free trial offers, and more.
YITH WooCommerce Subscription is a robust WooCommerce subscription plugin, but it doesn’t come with all the bells and whistles you need to run the entire autoshipping model. YITH WooCommerce Subscription offers a free plan; its premium version costs $199/year.
3. WooCommerce Subscriptions
WooCommerce’s official subscriptions solution, WooCommerce Subscriptions, brings automated recurring orders to WooCommerce stores. WooCommerce Subscriptions lets you sell your physical and digital products and services as subscriptions instead of simple one-time purchases.
In addition to supporting automated recurring payments for subscription renewals, WooCommerce Subscriptions also supports manual renewals where users pre-approve their renewals before getting charged.
WooCommerce Subscriptions is a flexible solution that lets you sell everything from subscription boxes to annual software packages (with free trial offers) as subscriptions on your WooCommerce store.
- Lets you add subscribe and save buttons to your product pages as well as your cart pages.
- Gives you a host of configuration options to create your subscription orders, allowing flexible subscription frequencies, cycles, and lengths
- Works with both physical and digital products (and services).
- Integrates with more than 25 payment gateways — including Authorize.net, Amazon Pay, PayPal, Stripe, Square, etc. — so your users get to choose their favorite methods.
- Supports automatic recurring payments and manual subscription renewals.
- Lets users upgrade, downgrade, and even cancel their plans.
- Offers reporting on your recurring revenue and active subscriptions, among others.
- Comes with solid coupon management to allow always-on recurring discounts or discounts only on a specific number of payments.
WooCommerce Subscriptions is a great plugin, but once you start using it, you’ll realize that you need a bunch of additional WooCommerce extensions and addons to fully execute your autoshipping business model. For example, the plugin doesn’t support email renewal reminders about the next payment to be auto-charged. You need a third-party subscription extension to support such types of email communications. You get the idea.
This plugin is available for $199/year.
4. SUMO Subscriptions
SUMO Subscriptions is a full-blown WooCommerce subscription system from FantasticPlugins that lets you accept WooCommerce recurring orders on your store.
It lets you add a subscribe and save option to your simple and variable product pages and also to your cart page and convert your regular eCommerce shop into a subscriptions store. You can easily set any subscription frequency and length for your subscription orders.
Also, you can use SUMO Subscriptions to power both automatic and semi-automatic or manual subscription renewals. In the automatic version, users are automatically charged when their subscription billing period is up for renewal, whereas in the manual option, users need to pre-approve their renewal payments.
SUMO Subscriptions lets your users pause their subscriptions for a certain period (that you can set) and for a limited number of times. Your users can also cancel their subscriptions from their end, if you enable the option for them.
- Lets you add subscribe and save options to both your product and cart pages.
- Integrates with two payment gateways (PayPal and Stripe) for its automatic payment processing.
- Facilities email communications before the automatic payments are charged.
- Supports offering free and paid trial periods.
- Lets you add shipping rates to renewals (based on the shipping rate calculated for the first order).
- Offers automatic and manual subscription renewals; if automatic renewals are canceled, they’re automatically downgraded to manual renewals.
- Offers customization options to match the plugin’s look and feel to match your store.
SUMO Subscriptions is a robust WooCommerce recurring order plugin that lets you sell your WooCommerce products as subscriptions. It won’t help you execute a complete autoshipping business but if you only want to set up simple WooCommerce recurring orders that work with PayPal, this might work. This plugin sells for $49 and offers 6 months of support.
5. Subscriptio WooCommerce Subscription
Subscriptio WooCommerce Subscription lets you turn your regular physical and digital products on your WooCommerce store into subscription products.
This WooCommerce subscription plugin automates the entire process of enabling repeat orders on your store right from generating renewal orders, rebilling, and processing recurring payments to sending payment reminder emails and canceling subscriptions when payments aren’t made.
You can use Subscriptio – WooCommerce Subscriptions to set up subscriptions of any length and billing schedules for both simple and variable products. With the help of additional extensions, you can even use this subscription plugin to set up a WooCommerce membership website.
Subscriptio – WooCommerce Subscriptions supports only PayPal and Stripe for its automatic subscription payments, so this might feel limiting to some users. Also, to enable the plugin’s fully automatic billing option, you’ll need to do a little coding.
- Works with both physical and digital goods letting you take WooCommerce recurring orders of everything from consumables to magazine subscriptions.
- Integrates with Stripe and PayPal.
- Allows users to pause, resume, and cancel their subscriptions.
- Supports a single checkout for both recurring and non-recurring items.
- Offers users two types of billing options: semi-automatic and fully automatic. With the semi-automatic option, users get an email with the payment link and make the payment manually after clicking it. The fully automatic billing option processes payments automatically without involving the user.
Again, just like SUMO Subscriptions, Subscriptio WooCommerce Subscription isn’t a full-blown autoshipping solution for your WooCommerce store. Still, Subscriptio – WooCommerce Subscriptions does make selling subscriptions on a WooCommerce store easy. You can get the plugin on CodeCanyon for $69, but this only gives you six months of support from the vendor (RightPress).
Wrapping it up…
Most online purchases begin with a search, and your store may not be the first one shoppers see when they want to buy. That’s why you should try to convert your current customers and the new ones you add into subscribers. This is one way of ensuring recurring sales and improving your lifetime customer value. Not just that, customers love the discounts they get with subscribing and the ease of getting their supplies automatically.
While WooCommerce is one of the most robust eCommerce platforms to build an online store, it doesn’t support recurring orders by default. But with these WooCommerce recurring order plugins, you can easily launch subscription plans for your products and build a subscription store.
In fact, with a plugin like Autoship Cloud, you get more than just the functionality to launch subscription plans for your products. It brings end-to-end subscription management to your physical goods WooCommerce store. If you’re in the replenishment industry where the inventory moves fast, you can rely on Autoship’s intelligent inventory forecasting to always be shipping. Alternatively, if you’re in the curation model, you can use Autoship’s hassle-free subscription management to let customers own their subscription experiences. If you’re using the access model, on the other hand, where you offer members exclusive perks like free shipping, you can use Autoship’s configurations to build a custom member’s autoshipping experience.
See how easy it is to set up Autoship Cloud for your WooCommerce store by signing up for a free trial.