Blocks and Beyond, the Integral Parts of the WooCommerce Roadmap

It seems like an obvious direction that blocks become a more and more important part of WooCommerce. Although at this point it was hard to share the specifics, Allen Smith, Developer Advocate at WooCommerce touched on that subject and a few other parts of their roadmap.

A Big Part of the Woo Ecosystem

Allens says that they see WooCommerce very much as a part of the bigger WordPress ecosystem. So to the extent that things change in WordPress, and they become the norm, WooCommerce does its best to track alongside that. Any new features that are landing in WordPress core, Woo is doing their best to make sure that they can implement those, or at least make sure WooCommerce supports those things.

It Started with Gutenberg

So it started with Gutenberg. Now, with full site editing coming into WordPress, they are aligning themselves, prepping core in WooCommerce to support full site editing in the future. That’s something that’s on the roadmap, or at least it’s something that’s in the future of what they are trying to plan.

WooCommerce in general, at least from an admin standpoint and from a shopper flow standpoint, is going to become increasingly JavaScript based. So that will be something that they’re trying to help legacy developers upskill on. Primarily, because WooCommerce has gotten some feedback from developers that these are veteran PHP developers who know WordPress and they know how the platform operates. But they are wanting to know a little bit more about JavaScript and some of these newer tools, like Node. A lot of the end-to-end testing that Woo does is based on JavaScript. It’s just a different tool set.

Give Devs Comfort That Their Extensions and Plugins Will Work

And so, the direction is to put together more guidance around how to use those tools so that these developers can feel supported because many of them have built extensions. They’ve built plugins. Many of them, their livelihood is based on selling these extensions. If they’re no longer compatible with WooCommerce core, then that affects them in a big way. WooCommerce wants to make sure that they are able to update their extensions so that they can continue to provide a seamless experience for those merchants as the platform itself evolves.

Platform Quality Via Testing

As Alan thought more about what was on the roadmap, one of the groups that he works closely with focuses on platform quality. A lot of improvements that are happening over the next year or so are going to be around automated testing, making sure that WooCommerce is easier to test for compatibility. A matter of just putting together tooling basically to make it easier for people to test WooCommerce to ensure that the platform itself is reliable.

Seamless Updating

At a higher level, I think everybody in WordPress has that anxiety sometimes around pressing the update button on any of their plugins and WooCommerce wants to do everything they can to take away that anxiety for WooCommerce and just make it a seamless thing, like how your browser updates. As Alan said, It’s like I don’t even know what version my browser is on. It’s just constantly up to date, and we want to make people feel that way about WooCommerce.

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