If you are an artist or an author, selling your products on the internet is a great way to distribute your own work. And with the Easy Digital Downloads (EDD) plugin for WordPress, creating an online store or adding this plug-in to your store is a great experience and well worth your consideration.
Easy Digital Downloads (EDD) was born to serve a single purpose: to make it easier, stronger, and faster to sell online virtual products on the Internet. At the same time, EDD increases the user experience and merchants do not need to care about shipping fees or inventory management.
In this article, we desire to give you a detailed Easy Digital Downloads review to help you make the right decision when choosing this platform, based on the following criteria:
- Ease of Use
- Reporting and Analytics
- Marketing and SEO
- Inventory Management
- Payment Gateways
- Customer Support
Easy Digital Downloads Review: At A First Glance
Easy Digital Downloads (EDD) is a plugin that allows you to create an online store selling products on WordPress. Unlike WooCommerce, EDD was created solely to focus on selling digital products.
But what are digital products? Products used to be tangible things — solid objects that could be weighed and placed in a package. However, today people tend to pay for products if it delivers value, therefore digital products are a realistic alternative today. There are lots of digital products nowadays such as: Software, eBooks, Creative Assets, Music, Training Materials, Web Elements,…
Creators of digital products use Easy Digital Downloads in order to operate their own, customizable eCommerce site. Independent creators and small businesses are most who satisfied with EDD.
According to Dustin W. S:
“The overall experience with EDD is excellent. Even when I run into issues, their support team is pretty quick to respond. And when I need to do higher level customizations, the community behind EDD has created a vast amount of tutorials and examples to pull from. This combination has really made me a fan for life.”
So we have briefly understood what Easy Digital Downloads is. Now we will go into the detailed comment of each aspect in this detailed Easy Digital Downloads review to have an overall picture of it.
The Easy Digital Downloads plugin is completely free. This is one of the main reasons it’s so popular for selling digital products. You might have to pay a little money for your payment processor, but this depends.
Easy Digital Downloads also has “membership” pass options so that you can pay a certain amount per year for access to some or all of the Easy Digital Downloads products.
These packages are excellent for developers with clients and for people who might be running multiple websites. We also like it if you just want access to all of the extensions for one website.
Here are the passes to give you an idea of how much you’ll have to pay and what comes along with each package:
- Personal Pass — $99 per year for single site licenses to all email marketing integrations.
- Extended Pass — $199 per year for support to sell recurring subscriptions and use all payment gateways. Each extension you receive comes with a single site license.
- Professional Pass — $299 per year for access to all premium extensions and marketplace functionality. All extensions get single site licenses.
- All Access Pass — $499 per year for access to all extensions and unlimited license key usage. This is ideal for an agency or a network of websites.
Ease of Use
The best thing about Easy Digital Downloads is that it is simultaneously simple to use, but also full-featured for the more complex stores.
Setup takes less than 5 min for basic functions to get your digital product store up and running. And if you need more features, there are lots of useful add-ons to get you what you need.
Easy Digital Downloads from a user perspective is that it is very easy to use. You can have it up and running in a matter of minutes. Just add your payment details, create your digital products, and you’re pretty much all set.
Reporting and Analytics
The traditional Easy Digital Downloads reports give you an overview of your sales, earnings and some product-related reports.
Let’s dig deeper.
Sales & earnings graphs
With this report, you can keep a track of your total sales and total earnings for the desired period you have selected. It can be for today, yesterday, a week, a year or custom date range.
In addition to it, you also get data on your estimated monthly earnings and estimated monthly sales.
Product specific reports
This report gives you the earnings over time graph for a specific download. You can filter reports as per the date range and whether to include or exclude taxes. Other details include average monthly sales and earnings for the specified time period.
There’s a paid extension called Easy Digital Downloads Advanced Reports starting at $89 for a single site. This extension gives a little more insights into your sales. In addition, EDD also provides a number of other extensions for reporting and analysis such as Campaign Tracker, EDD Email Reports, User History,….
If you are still not satisfied with what these extensions bring, it is also possible to add analysis tools from 3rd party providers.
Marketing and SEO
Having a good sales tool is not enough for you to increase your store’s sales. Marketing and SEO are two essential tools to bring more customers to you. So let’s find out what EDD can offer users in this array.
Similar to reporting tools, the store of extensions that EDD also provides a number of marketing solutions. One of the most effective tools is the use of newsletters extension. For EDD, they provide a lot of solutions like Mailchimp, AWeber, ConvertKit, etc. Using these extensions is very good in keeping your customers to keep buying more products.
In addition, with the current strong development of social networking platforms, the influence of influencers is increasingly valued, so tools like AffiliateWP will become very useful in increasing sales. your collection. When using this tool, you can completely control all the parameters of the affiliate in the page that you want.
You can use the built-in Easy Digital Downloads product posts created in the `/downloads` archive.
To improve SEO, many of the top SEO plugins work with Easy Digital Downloads, which would allow you to customize the SEO titles, descriptions, and other search related information related to your products.
Also, as with any SEO changes you make, it can take weeks (and in some cases a month or more) to see results in the search engines, so the best bet is to make changes and monitor the results of them in your Google Search Console/Webmaster Tools.
And just like WooCommerce, it has thousands of extensions and integrations. This allows you to process credit card payments, handle recurring transactions, take advantage of affiliates, etc.
It’s very versatile and provides you with an easy way to analyze and track your sales. It also has a great team behind it which is committed to WordPress coding standards, ensuring that making changes to the codebase is simple and easy.
Through some of the information mentioned above, in every task on your website, there will be necessary extensions to make your management work easier and more efficient. Not only the extensions that EDD provides, you can also add extensions from 3rd parties that you think are suitable and compatible with the WP platform.
Managing your inventory is also relatively easy if you need to add or edit existing product information with WordPress’ default inventory management.
In general, digital products do not have a need for stock control. However, on special occasions, such as for users selling tickets or other “digital” items that have a limited quantity, the ability to limit the total number of times a product can be purchased, can be very helpful.
The core Easy Digital Downloads plugin does not support stock tracking by default, but there is a simple extension that adds this feature.
First, you will need the Purchase Limit extension. Once you have purchased and installed the extension, go to the edit screen of the product you wish to set a purchase limit on.
EDD offers three payment gateways by default (Paypal, Amazon, and manual) but many others are available as extensions. One of the best features EDD has to offer is their commitment to helping you deliver an outstanding customer experience.
It has a built-in customer access area so customers can easily access the files they paid for and keep track of their purchases. If they ever accidentally lose/delete a file they downloaded, customers can log in to their account and re-download it.
You can find a large list of third-party payment gateways for Easy Digital Downloads, but many of them aren’t well-maintained. But the use of those extensions is also considered very carefully because they pose a lot of security risk to you if they are not explicitly censored.
Easy Digital Downloads is backed by top-notch technical support from our globally distributed full-time support team.
However, unfortunately, EDD do not provide live support solutions for you 24/7. You can only make an appointment with EDD through their homepage about your problems.
Besides, they also have an extensive documentation site available.
If you’re looking for faster support via email, they encourage you to purchase an Easy Digital Downloads pass or premium extension.
So now if you think Easy Digital Downloads fits your needs after this detailed Easy Digital Downloads review, let’s go to the installation instruction.
Easy Digital Downloads Installation
Step 1: Set-up your online store
First, if you don’t have an online store on WordPress, create one for yourself by following these steps. Here is a brief overview of the steps to take to get your WordPress website started.
- Pick a domain name.
- Choose a hosting provider & package.
- Install WordPress & choose your theme.
- Learn WordPress Dashboard & pick your WordPress plugins.
- Customize website.
Step 2: Installation
The Easy Digital Downloads plugin will be the first thing you need to accomplish. You may get it for free from the WordPress repository, or you can use the instructions below to install it from your dashboard.
To install it from your dashboard, go to WordPress Admin > Plugins > Add New, type “easy digital downloads” into the search box, then click “Install Now.” Make sure Easy Digital Downloads is listed as the author. The most recent version of EDD is 2.7+.
Step 3: Start adding your products
Let’s say you want to add a few digital products to your website. All you have to do is click on the “Add New” button under the Downloads tab in your WordPress toolbar, and then it gives you a WordPress editor page just like you were about to write a blog post.
At the bottom of the page, you can type in a price for the download and include various other details such as product type, notes, the download link, and an image. Feel free to also change how many times a single person can download the file.
How to Config EDD Settings
The first thing you will want to do is configure options for checkout, payment, redirects, etc. To do this, click into settings under “Downloads” which is now on the left-hand side of your WordPress dashboard.
Next, click on the “Payment Gateways” tab. Here you can choose which payment gateways you want to use for processing transactions on your site.
By default, PayPal standard, Amazon, and test payments are your choices.
You can also set up styles, taxes, and other miscellaneous settings. For many stores, none of these actually need to be changed. That is one great thing about EDD, is that it works right out of the box.
Easy Digital Downloads Review: Final Words
It’s critical to pick the proper online shopping platform when starting a new digital business. While using an existing third-party retail platform like Etsy may appear to be the simplest option, individuals who want to take it to the next level should always create their own site. You’ll be able to profit more in the long term if you own and manage the complete firm.
At the same time, you don’t want to be stuck dealing with customer support or payment difficulties for hours. That is why it is critical to select an e-commerce plugin that is both user-friendly and dependable.
Easy Digital Downloads stands out as a great WordPress e-commerce plugin for a few reasons.
- First, it’s free, and you can then extend it with premium extensions (check out also the best WordPress extensions).
- Second, it’s reliable and has great performance.
- Finally, it’s easy to use and has a great developer team backing it. All things considered, EDD is perfect for both novice and experienced WordPress users.
In case you already have an online store but on a different platform and want to change to WordPress after this Easy Digital Downloads review, migrating from your old store to WordPress is really easy with the use of LitExtension.