We came across a question that was perfect for the Photocrati community. It went something like this:
“What plugins do you recommend for selling things other than photos? For example, I want to sell gift certificates for the holidays and make it easy to order online.”
There are multiple ways you can offer gift certificates to your customers.
The first, simplest, and our personal favorite is a simple contact form with an e-commerce option.
There are multiple contact form plugins offering e-commerce options, like Gravity Forms, Ninja Forms and more. The goal here is to have a simple form, asking for all the information you would need to send the gift certificate to the giftee.
With these plugins, you can add Stripe or PayPal payment for ease of checkout. And if you pick Gravity Forms, you could also pick up a PDF generation addon which can generate and send the gift certificate automatically.
If you happen to be using WooCommerce or Easy Digital Downloads on your website, then you’ll be happy to know there are gift certificate add-ons available to you. Most photographers aren’t using those e-commerce systems, though, as they’re not ideal for selling photographs. They’re really designed to sell anything and everything, and there is a big difference between image-centric e-commerce and general e-commerce when it comes to selling photographs.
But WooCommerce and Easy Digital Downloads are popular e-commerce plugins in the overall WordPress community, so it’s worth mentioning them.
- WooCommerce Smart Coupons offers gift certificates (there are also third-party add-ons)
- Gift a Product is a third-party plugin for Easy Digital Downloads
The reason we classified these as a complex method is that, in order to sell gift certificates through them, you need the full e-commerce solution installed and configured on your site. Even if you’re not going to use the rest of the features.
We like to say keep it stupid simple. The contact form plugin method is simpler and makes more sense for most photographers. Because you likely won’t be using a complex solution like WooCommerce to sell your photographs to clients. You will, however, be likely to use a contact form plugin in multiple ways. Like for contact pages, client questionnaires and more.