After installing WooCommerce on my WordPress site, among other setup processes, I created Product Categories and added a number of test products. When I went to Appearance > Menus, in order to create a menu for the site, it was discovered there were missing WooCommerce product categories. The individual product categories were also missing in my theme’s Customizer. Where did they go?
The answer to the question above is that the missing WooCommerce product categories did not go anywhere. They just could not be seen. Part of this problem stems from the blending of WordPress and WooCommerce syntax, specifically in the word Categories. In WordPress, Categories typically refers to a collection of written articles on a similar topic. With WooCommerce, a collection of similar products are grouped together in Product Categories. If you are like me, I just assumed the categories I created for the products would appear and be used like any other WordPress category. Wrong assumption.
So now that we know that after installing WooCommerce, there are now two types of category-structures on the website, here is how to get the Product Categories to present themselves:
- Go to Appearance > Menus. As shown in the “feature” image above, in the upper right-hand corner of the page, click Screen Options. In some cases, programs and/or options on the WordPress admin panel may have different screen options. This is the case with Menus.
2. As shown above, click the “box” for Product Categories.
As shown above, the product categories have now appeared in their portion of the Menu Options (Left Arrow). Also, they are ready to be added to the Menu structure (Right Arrow). Note the right side of each product category as shown when added to the Menu structure. Instead of the menu item referring to a Page, product category items refer to Category. Product Categories should now be visible in theme Product Category drop-down configuration boxes as well.