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Store Editing Roadmap Update – Q3 2022

In the previous roadmap update, I introduced the concept of Store Editing which is used to describe a collection of technologies and interfaces that allow merchants or store builders to customize their store via a no-code-required visual canvas. In the ensuing months we’ve been steadily working away at bringing this to WooCommerce and it’s time for an updated look at what we’re working on.

A few reminders:

Note: these roadmaps are intended to give directional updates without being precise about delivery dates. Plans can and do change. For these updates, I’m following the Now, Next, Later format.


Now

Work on Filter Block improvements and patterns

These blocks are an important part of the shopper experience when browsing a store catalog (and refining search results). The work we’re doing here adds some design improvements to the filter blocks and we’re also creating and bundling some patterns using these blocks for easier use when customizing a store. By bundling these in WooCommerce core, themes can also reference these in custom block templates.

We’re also planning on implementing these new patterns in relevant product archive templates.

We also plan on releasing a new Filter Products by Ratings block which will allow shoppers to further refine the displayed products in a catalog by their rating.

Product Query Block

Early development work on Product Query Block

We’re currently working on creating a foundational product query block that will be a variant of the WordPress Query Loop block. This will both utilize all the functionality present in the WP core block as well as curate the UX/UI for product use. 

The focus initially will be on contributing necessary improvements to Gutenberg as well as releasing an initial iteration of this block to provide the structure for eventually rolling it out to power existing product archive type blocks and templates.

Patterns

Block patterns are one of the most useful features in Gutenberg that make it easier to distribute and implement beautiful element designs composed of blocks. Also usable in block templates and template parts, we are working on creating a set of key commerce-oriented patterns to be bundled with WooCommerce core for merchants and themes to rely on in their store customization and design.

Besides the product filter block patterns already mentioned earlier, other areas we’re working on for patterns:

Various header and footer patterns.

These will provide variations for stores to modify their template headers and footers to be more commerce-oriented. We also welcome feedback on the header patterns and footer patterns on our GitHub discussions board.

As a part of this work, we’ll also be finishing off the improvements to the Product Search block (which becomes a variation of the WordPress search block) and looking at creating a My Account link block.

Commerce adjacent patterns

This is used to describe patterns that are commerce-oriented and that aren’t connected to WooCommerce-specific data. Things like really beautiful hero-type patterns for showcasing a product, or location-aware and contact information type patterns usable in store footers. 


Next

Blockifying Product Archive Templates and migrating existing Product Grid type blocks.

Using the Product Query block (and related element blocks) as a foundation, we’ll be able to fully blockify all the product archive templates so merchants and builders can completely customize the layout and design of these templates. 

We’re also going to be working on migrating all our existing product grid type blocks (eg On Sale Products, Best Selling Products)  over to be powered by the new Product query block so that they all have a consistent interface and extensibility patterns. Finally, we’ll be able to provide clear paths for extenders to enhance and provide additional functionality to all these blocks.

Blockified Single Product Template Prototype

We’ve got initial designs prepared and our initial focus will be working on getting a prototype in place for this important template. Two key pieces that we think will be interesting opportunities here will be the Product Image and Add To Cart element blocks. We also have some explorations to do around handling the UX around different Product Types.


Later

Complete the Blockified Single Product template

Taking what is learned from the earlier explorations the focus here will be on completing the work necessary to surface the completely blockified single product template. It’s likely this will accommodate various product types as well (including those that might be added by extensions).

New Blocks

Related to blockifying the single product template, we’ll be working on some new blocks including:

  • Reviews Element Block
  • Product Image Gallery Block

We also will be working on a Categories Grid block/pattern for more rapidly displaying selected (or all) categories to shoppers for browsing.


And that’s it for this roadmap! As you can see, we’re planning to work on many exciting investments into the block-based future of WooCommerce. Stay tuned for the next update — and if you have any questions, please reach out here in the comments or in any of the other places mentioned earlier in this post.

By Darren Ethier

My passion is developing useful and pretty code. I also love anything to do with leadership and the wise use of words. I'm working with Automattic as a Product/Engineering lead of a team working on the intersection of WooCommerce and Gutenberg.

8 replies on “Store Editing Roadmap Update – Q3 2022”

Hey Darren, excited for this.

Can I just give a friendly reminder to allow filtering of the query on the Product Block especially?

A lot of third party plugins (like Wholesale Suite) filter for product visibility and will need to integrate.

I’ll forward this through the specified form too, just wanted to leave a comment in case others wanted to chime in.

Thanks and looking forward to watching the progress unfold!

Liked by 2 people

Hi Darren,

Very excited about these new features. Can’t wait for the single product page to be blockified especially. And the Query product block will be so much appropriated.

If existing product blocks (e.g. Featured products) will be migrated to use the Query product block, will this be a smooth transition or will theme authors have to update existing templates to use the new blocks?

Liked by 1 person

If existing product blocks (e.g. Featured products) will be migrated to use the Query product block, will this be a smooth transition or will theme authors have to update existing templates to use the new blocks?

It’s likely there will be some sort of migration needed. However, what would likely happen is the existing blocks would still work so existing stores implementing them won’t have any breakage. However, there’d be a way for stores to migrate the existing implementations to the new blocks.

This is still something to be worked out definitively once we know the final structure of the Product Query block.

Like

Yes, the filter blocks are usable in the block widget editor. However, they will only apply to content on the page that supports them. Currently, that is the All Products Block, and the built-in Shop page provided by Woo.

Like

Thank you for your reply!
If I understand correctly, then you have not yet released this update, where will the filters be added? When will this update be released? And will there be settings that will allow you to hide and open child categories?

It’s great that you will finally add a filter to the core and will not need to use a third-party filter plugin

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The filter blocks are already available in WooCommerce core now. Some of the updates we have been working on are only available via the WooCommerce Blocks feature plugin for now, but will land in a future version of WooCommerce.

And will there be settings that will allow you to hide and open child categories?

I’m not sure exactly what you’re referring to here, but if you mean filters that can be used by shoppers to narrow down the products to within a specific category (or sub-category), that is not available yet.

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