Many online merchants use WooCommerce to build hidden items. These are goods that have been uploaded to the WooCommerce store (and published) but are not visible on the main shop page or in the product archives.
We mean items that fit into one or more of the following categories when we say WooCommerce hidden products:
Products in WooCommerce’s main store page or product archives that aren’t viewable to certain (or all) users
Products that can’t be found through a direct URL
Search engines can’t see your products since they’re not indexable.
WooCommerce hidden items are created for a number of reasons by online business owners. The basic objective, though, is to limit the availability of particular items to specific sorts of buyers.
- Hidden Product Usage Instances
- Method 1: Hide a Certain WooCommerce Product
- Method 2: Hide a Whole Group of WooCommerce Products
- Method 3: How to Make Your WooCommerce Store Invisible
Hidden Product Usage Instances
Here are a few examples of use cases:
- Wholesaler: WooCommerce websites and B2B businesses that sell to both retail and wholesale customers may need a technique to restrict the availability of some goods to wholesale customers alone. These might be product bundles or individual items.
- Businesses that require a subscription: WooCommerce membership sites usually sell unique products in addition to those sold to regular (non-member) customers. Examples include event tickets, engraved items, and limited-edition products.
- Exclusively for members’ stores: Only logged-in consumers can purchase items from members-only stores. To put it another way, in order to view and purchase anything, you must be a registered member.
Method 1: Hide a Certain WooCommerce Product
WooCommerce comes with an easy solution to hide WooCommerce products from the main store page right out of the box. The ‘Catalog Visibility’ setting allows you to do this.
In the ‘Edit product’ page, select the product you want to hide. You may choose which store pages the product will be listed on by using the ‘Catalog visibility’ option (in the ‘Publish’ widget on the right). Choose ‘Hidden’ from the drop-down menu.
The biggest disadvantage of this strategy is that anyone with a direct URL may still access the goods. Furthermore, it is not suited for store owners who need to conceal several goods because it takes manually editing each product.
Method 2: Hide a Whole Group of WooCommerce Products
For the purpose of demonstration, we will be using WooCommerce Protected Categories plugin that must be installed and active on your WooCommerce store before you can begin. You may also use the WooCommerce Members only plugin.
Then, for your personal items, make a new product category. I’m going to call mine “Private Products,” but you may call yours whatever you like.
After you’ve created the category, add the products you wish to hide to it.
You’ve arrived at the stage where you must decide how customers will be able to “unhide” the products in this category. You can do the following:
- Allow consumers to access the hidden products by entering a password.
- Allow selected users or user roles to see the products automatically.
How to secure a hidden WooCommerce category with a unique password
Go to Products > Categories and update the category you added for your ‘private products’ to add password protection:
- Scroll down to the Visibility section.
- Select Password Protected from the drop-down menu.
- Enter the password you want to use. If you wish to provide various users with separate passwords, you may add numerous passwords to open the category.
- Make sure you save your changes.
Then, under WooCommerce > Settings > Products > Protected Categories, you can customize how your password-protected categories work. You’ll want to do the following in this area:
- To make your category completely invisible, uncheck the two Category Visibility boxes.
- Choose a Category Login Page where consumers may input their password to gain access to the hidden categories/products.
You may also go through the other options to see if anything fits your needs.
Hide WooCommerce Products by Specific User or User Role?
If you’d rather offer select individuals or wholesale roles automatic access to the Hidden Products, follow these steps:
- Go to Products > Categories.
- Edit the category for the hidden products that you made.
- Scroll down to the Visibility section.
- Pick which users and/or roles have access to your hidden WooCommerce items by going to Protected > Users.
- Make sure you save your modifications.
Then, under WooCommerce Settings Products Protected Categories, you can customize how your user and role-protected categories work. When a logged-out or guest user tries to access a hidden category or one of its goods, you must decide what should happen.
Let us take a look at hiding products by user roles with the help of another plugin…
The Product Visibility by User Role for WooCommerce plugin allows you to show or conceal WooCommerce items based on the user role of the consumer.
You have the option of concealing goods in the following ways:
- Products in the shop and search results can be hidden.
- Make things unavailable for purchase.
- Completely hide products.
For the sake of demonstration, we will be using the free version of the plugin. Start by installing and activating the plugin like you would with any other plugin. Once the plugin is activated, click Settings.
Go to General Settings under Product Visibility. You may choose how products should be hidden in this section.
Let us take a brief understanding of what each setting does:
- Hide Catalog Visibility: Selected products will be hidden from the shop and search results as a result of this setting. The product will, however, remain accessible through a direct connection.
- Make Non-Purchasable: This will render some goods unavailable for purchase (i.e., they won’t be able to put the product in the basket).
- Modify Query: This will entirely hide chosen products (including the direct link).
- Hide Menu Items: The elements in the navigation menu are hidden (i.e., hidden products, product categories, and tags). Only the goods, product categories, and tags that have been marked in bulk settings will be shown.
- Hide Product Terms: Removes product categories and tags from the front-end display. Only the categories and tags that have been marked in bulk settings will be shown.
- Redirect: This option is only helpful if Modify Query is turned on. If a product is considered invisible, it will redirect to a page other than 404.
- Redirect – Redirect URL per Product: Each product’s edit page will now include a new “Product visibility: Redirect URL” meta box.
- Replace Description: For the selected products, this will replace the information in the ” Description” tab.
- Replace Description – Content to Replace with:
- Replace Short Description: For the selected products, this will replace the information in the ” Product Short Description” tab.
- Replace Description – Content to Replace with:
Once you have completed customizing the above settings as per your need, click Save Changes.
Now let us move on to the next section of our article…
Method 3: How to Make Your WooCommerce Store Invisible
Now it’s time to move on to the third method of hiding WooCommerce Products. If you wish to keep all of your items hidden from the public, you’ll need to install and activate the WooCommerce Private Store plugin.
Then, to configure the plugin, go to WooCommerce > Settings > Private Store.
You can hide your shop via two methods, just like you can hide certain product categories:
- To unhide the store, users should be required to provide a password.
- Unhide the shop for logged-in users automatically.
Password Protection of the Hidden Store
To add a password to access the hidden store, follow these steps:
- In the Store passwords box, type a password (or several passwords).
- In the “Password expires after” box, choose how long the password should unhide the store for (in days).
- In the Redirect URL box, type the URL to which users should be redirected after logging in.
- Customize the settings for the Login form.
Providing access to your private store to logged-in users
Simply tick the option for Automatically unlock the shop for logged in users if you want logged-in users to be able to see your private store. You may pick which user roles to unlock the shop for by scrolling down. This is useful if you only want particular user roles, such as administrators and shop managers, to have access. You may also specify whether or not the login form should be hidden.
Are you looking for a way to conceal WooCommerce items on your website? Sometimes, especially if you’re running a B2B/wholesale or members-only store, you don’t want every single product available to the general public. Whether you want to conceal a single product, a group of products, or your entire WooCommerce store, one of the solutions listed above should suffice.