August 1, 2017

Variable Products in Vend and WooCommerce

How linksync integrates variable products in Vend and WooCommerce

By Campbell Angus

Are you selling products of different variations, such as size or color? Then having variable products is the way to go in WooCommerce and Vend.

According to WooCommerce, the variable products are a product type on WooCommerce that lets you offer a set of variations on a product, with controlled prices, stocks, images and more for each variation. They can be used for varied products, like shirts, which you can offer in large, medium and small sizes, and that come in different colors.To further understand the concept of variable products, let’s familiarize ourselves with a few common terms:

To further understand the concept of variable products, let’s familiarize ourselves with a few common terms:

Parent Product – it is a general term used to describe the product. Parent item helps structure the variable products. You can’t sell a parent product by itself. An example of a parent item is a shirt.

Attributes – these are characteristics or inherent parts of a product, such as color, size, etc.

Values – the values or specific characteristics related to the attributes. For example, if your product attribute is color, your values are red, black, white, blue, etc.

Child Product/Variant – each combination of values for a parent item produces a child variant. For example, ‘small black shirt’. Each child variant is represented with a different identifier or SKU.

Given the explanation and examples above, you can have several variants in one parent product, depending on the number of attributes and values you have added.

Integrating variable products in Vend and WooCommerce using linksync

 The basic concept of variable products is simple.

It only gets more complicated when you integrate WooCommerce with other applications, such as Vend. This is because both applications have different ways of incorporating the variable products into their system.

WooCommerce applies an SKU to a parent product and has separate SKUs for each variation. Vend, on the other hand, simply has an SKU for each variation, with no SKU for the ‘parent’ of variations the way WooCommerce does.

So, how does linksync Vend and WooCommerce integration sync the two systems together, when WooCommerce has an SKU in the parent product and Vend has none?

The illustration below will show you how linksync does it:

How linksync integrates Variable Products in Vend and WooCommerce

The linksync plugin uses the Vend Variation Handle to connect with WooCommerce parent SKU.

The product SKU for the variable product must match both in Vend and WooCommerce for the products to sync.

What happens if your variable products do not match? Can you still sync?

Inconsistent data can cause chaos as well as many issues in the syncing process. If you have one same SKU in Vend and WooCommerce but the data inside it such as price, inventory, etc., does not match, it would be difficult to know which data is correct and should be followed.

That is why linksync has come up with options: whenever you import your products for syncing, you can choose either to (1) import products from Vend or (2) import products to Vend.

If you choose to import products from Vend, your main source of data or master data is Vend. The data in Vend will overwrite the existing data you have in WooCommerce based on matching SKU.

For example, you have SKU 10000 in Vend and WooCommerce, and your price for SKU 10000 in Vend is $20 and $25 in WooCommerce. If you choose to import products from Vend, your WooCommerce price will be changed to $20.

If you choose to import products to Vend, then WooCommerce is your main source of data or master data. The data in WooCommerce will overwrite the existing data you have in Vend, based on matching SKU.

So, using the example above, if you choose to import products to Vend, the Vend price will be changed to $25.

Having one main source of data during the import process will help fix the inconsistency of your data. You might want to review your data in Vend and WooCommerce before you choose any of these import options.

Happy syncing!