Display Variation Swatches for WooCommerce

Shoppers are a diverse bunch with different needs, preferences, and budgets. Keeping that in mind, product variations are created.

You could mention all variations of a product as separate products, but it’d take up space and time. And to save both, variable products are created.

The product variations are based on attributes such as size, weight, color, etc. And these attributes are product-specific.

A variable product is a product type that allows you to sell multiple versions of a simple product. You can display these variations using text, color, and image swatches.

The concepts are fine and practiced by all eCommerce websites, but they often lack organization and a professional look, negatively impacting conversion rates.

So, there is an imminent need for attractive product variation swatches if you want to sell variable products. They are essential to your business.

Once you’ve read this article, you’ll understand the significance of variation swatches and how to display them on your WooCommerce store using product variation plugins.

Let’s get started.

Various Ways to Display WooCommerce Variation Swatches On Your Store

Hey, did you know there is more than one way to display variation swatches on your online store?

Yes, there are levels to this stuff.

In this section, we will explore the different ways of showcasing product variations using WooCommerce Plugins.

Let’s start with the basics first.

Online stores display variation swatches to present the variations of their products. Types of variations are product-dependent but most of them can be represented in the following three formats: Text, Color, and Image.

So, which product variation WooCommerce plugin should you use to sell the variable products?

Advanced Product Variation allows you to display product variations to online shoppers. It enables you to elevate the customers’ shopping experience with variation color attributes, product variation tables, gallery images, label attributes, etc.

  • Color, Text, and Image Swatch
  • Swatches on Shop/Archive/Category Page
  • Display Variation Swatches On Related Products
  • Variation Gallery Images
  • Variation Video Gallery
  • Export the Product Variation Table
  • Show Single Attribute On Shop Page
  • Variation Image On Mouse-Hover
  • Custom Size For Swatches
  • Import/Export Gallery Images

Advanced Product Variation

Attract, Engage, and Sell With Advance Product Variation Swatches, Variation Video and Image gallery, and Exportable Variation Table.

If I keep going on about the features, it would cover the whole article. So, go to the product page if you want to explore the features.

a) How to Add WooCommerce Product Variation Attributes to Create Swatches

You can create global attributes and per-product-wise attributes. In this section, you will learn how to configure attributes in both ways.


Before you start, go to WooCommerce > Advanced Product Variation and click on the “Enable Swatches” toggle.

Done? You’re good to go.

1. Navigate to Products > Add New from the Admin menu.

2. Scroll to Product Data and select Variable Product from the Product type dropdown.

3. Go to the Attributes tab. You will see the custom product attributes dropdown. If there are pre-created product attributes, they will be visible in the dropdown.

create woocommerce custom attributes for variations

4. Since you are starting fresh, select the “Custom product attribute” and click Add.

5. Define the attribute Name and its Value(s).

adding attributes names and values

I’ve added the name and size attributes. Remember to check the ‘Used for variations’ so you can create variations using these attributes.

6. Click on Save attributes and go to the Variations tab. There, click on Add variation dropdown, select Create variations from all attributes and hit the Go button.

configure woocommerce variations

7. Now, you set the Default Values to display on the product & shop page. Then, click on the edit button to further configure variation details.

8. For any variation, you can add images & videos and set pricing, dimensions, stock status, shipping class, and description.

9. That’s how you create product-wise variation. Now, you can use these variations while creating other products as well.

b) How to Create Global Attributes for WooCommerce Variation Swatches

1. Go to Products > Attributes.

2. Under the “Add new attribute” section, enter the attribute name, and slug, check Enable Archives box, and select the Default sort Order.

3. The Default sort order allows you to select the sort order of the terms on the frontend shop/product pages. You can select Name, Name (numeric), Term ID, or Custom Ordering.

adding variation attributes

4. Now, click on Add Attribute to create the color attribute. Similarly, I’ve created one for size as well.

5. Click on Configure terms to set up the attribute variations swatches.

6. In the Product Color section, you have to enter the Name, Slug, and Description and select the Swatch Type.

edit woocommerce product variation attribute

7. After adding the terms, hover over the product color name and click on edit. You can edit the Name, Slug, Description, Select Color, and Display Type.

8. There are two display types: Image and Color. If you select the Color display type, then you have to choose a color from the color grid. And for the Image display type, you have to upload an image.

edit color options

9. After you have configured the display type, click on the Update button.

10. Now, you can add multiple ‘Attributes’ and ‘Attributes Terms’ according to your requirements.

11. At last, go to the Global settings of the Product Variation Swatches for WooCommerce plugin.

12. Click on the “Show Swatches in Shop/Archive/Category Page” settings to display variation swatches on the shop page and/or category page. You can also show the thumbnails for attribute terms by enabling the “Use Attributes Terms Thumbnails” toggle.

13. Finally, you can display variation swatches for variable products to your customers.

A product variation gallery contains images & videos of product variations. Users can view the visual details of different variations and decide which one they would like to purchase.

Follow these steps to add a product variation gallery to your WooCommerce table:

  • Go to Advance Settings and click on the Product Wise Variation Gallery and Video Gallery toggles to show gallery images and videos for each variation.

display video variation gallery

  • Now, go to Products from the admin menu and open or create any variable product.
  • Go to Product data > Variations tab.
  • Expand the created variations, click on “Add Variation Gallery Images/Videos” and add multiple variation images & videos.

add woocommerce product variation images and videos

  • Save the uploaded product variation videos & images. Here is how it will look on the product page.

display variation video gallery on product page

  • From the Gallery Setting tab, you can also decide the placement of  the WooCommerce variation gallery.

variation swatches gallery setting

  • There are two predefined locations to place the variation gallery: Gallery In Left Side and Gallery In Bottom
  • At last, go to your front end to view the variation gallery

You can also add a slider to the variation gallery. Just click on the “Enable for Slider On Variation-Wise Gallery” toggle and save your settings.

product variation swatches style

There is much more you can do on your WooCommerce store using the Advanced Product Variation. Please refer to the documentation to learn more about other customization options.

d) How to Add the WooCommerce Product Variation Table

The name itself is enough to explain what we are about to explore.

A product variation table essentially is a table that consists of all variations of a particular product. It’s an excellent way to showcase all variations of your products in a tabular format on a single page.

Now, this functionality is not provided in WooCommerce. Again, you have to use the Advanced Product Variation plugin.

You can configure the variation table columns and locations from the Tabular Variation tab.

variation table settings

Here is how it will appear on the front end.

product variation table

Note: For this variation table, you need to have your “attributes” and “attribute terms” configured beforehand.

So, these were some of the major ways to showcase product variations on your WooCommerce store.  Every method has its unique benefits, but there is a commonality.

Product variation swatches, variation gallery, and variation table make your store look more organized and professional and also make it easier for your customers to locate product variations.

There are three more product variation plugins by WP Swings.

  1. WooCommerce Colors and Swatches for Variations
  2. WooCommerce Variation Master
  3. WooCommerce Product Variation Table 

All of these plugins will allow you to display and manage color, text, and image variation swatches on your WooCommerce store. Ultimately, it will let you effortlessly introduce variations of your WooCommerce products and expand your business.

The Benefits of WooCommerce Variations Plugins

Merchants that display variation swatches are significantly ahead of those that don’t. It has the following major benefits:

1. Promotes Informed Purchase Decisions

Buyers of today know that knowledge is power. Most of them do full-fledged research and comparisons for purchasing even the simplest of products.

Customers want to learn before they buy. So naturally, you should provide organized information about your products. It’s one of the defining factors that have a direct influence on conversion rates.

Product variation swatches help you deliver excellent visual information through images, texts, and colors to help customers make an informed choice.

So, display variation swatches to present organized information about variable products and promote informed purchase decisions.

2. Attract and Engage Customers

Product variation swatches add style to your product presentation. It’s captivating enough to capture your visitors’ attention.

The textual swatches do help but they are not as appealing. Image and color swatches are far more noticeable though because they are processed 60000 times faster in the brain as compared to text.

visual information processing

[Source: Killervisualstrategies]

Humans are naturally inclined to visual content. Color and image swatches are nothing but visual content pieces that introduce customers to product variations. They always look appealing to customers while observing a variable product.

Having product variation, in general, improves your chances of getting sales. According to a study, 85% of shoppers say that color is the primary reason for buying a product. So, if you display the colored variations of products that customers prefer, they will sell more frequently.

3. Improve the Ease of Shopping

What’s the takeaway from the two benefits I discussed above?

  1. Product variation swatches organize information.
  2. Presenting product information in an engaging way

Both of these factors contribute to the ease of shopping. You can visually represent the various details of your products and engage your customers.

One of the main reasons why people prefer to shop online is the availability of improved product content and information.

reasons for online shopping

Source: Statista

With product variation swatches, you can showcase all variations of your products beautifully in one place and provide valuable information to customers.

4.  Enhance User Experience

The product variation swatches work on every factor that enhances the user experience of an online store.

First, it helps you organize product variations. Second, it showcases variations in a visually appealing format. And last, it allows users to easily select the variations they wish to purchase.

You can also add a variation gallery where images for product variations are shown. It further improves the UX because shoppers love to gather as much visual detail as possible.

Apart from that, product variation swatches also engage your customers. The attractive swatches and gallery images make them stick around a bit longer to explore your products thereby increasing the likelihood of getting sales.

In conclusion, variations swatches improve the ease of shopping, engage customers, provide product information, and increase your sales.

Final Words

Product variation swatches are essential to all WooCommerce stores that sell variable products. It helps merchants to organize the presentation of product variations and provide a smooth shopping experience to their customers, but there are different ways to do it.

In this article, I have explained the benefits of WooCommerce variation swatches and also shown how to add variation swatches, galleries, and tables with the help of two product variation plugins for WooCommerce.

Download the plugins and follow the steps mentioned in this article to start selling variable products and make your online store look more professional.

And hey, you can also check out our blogs to learn more about the best eCommerce practices.

About the Author: Aditya Srivastava

Aditya Srivastava is a poet, writer, and avid reader. He lives to write and writes for a living. Coffee is his elixir, and books are his best friends. To him, passion and profession are equal. Like most writers, he is also a potent thinker, but he only thinks with his pen.

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