This plugin hasn’t been tested with the latest 3 major releases of WordPress. It may no longer be maintained or supported and may have compatibility issues when used with more recent versions of WordPress.

WC External Variations


Adds basic support for external products to WooCommerce
variations/variable products. This plugin allows you to define an external
URL on any variation and will then open that link when the user
clicks on the Add To Cart button. Because the Javascript is used for this,
any adding to cart that is done via the backend such as with APIs will not
redirect properly.

Note that as of 03/2023 this plugin is not longer under active development.

Shortcode support

This plugin provides two shortcodes that you can use within your site:
1. [wcev_product_attr] – allows you to display an product attribute, use the “name” attribute to find the right attribute.
2. [wcev_var_field] – allows you to display a custom field, attribute or data element for a variation, use the “id” attribute to point to the right field.
The order of precendence is as follows: custom fields, attributes, then data elements.
3. [wcev_var_postdate] – displays the formatted post date and time for a variation, doesn’t take attributes.

External SKU and status fields

In addition to the external URL field, a second field called “External SKU” is provided for each variation.
You can set this field and then use the provided shortcode to display it.
The purpose is to track the external SKU separately from the internal one.

There is now ability to specify the ‘Add to Button’ text in a specific variation. If the global setting is set, the variation-specific field will override it.


To change settings, go to WooCommerce Settings -> Products -> External Variations. The following are available:
* Ability to change if links open in new or same window
* Ability to change if links open when the ‘Add to Cart’ button is clicked or when the variation is selected
* Ability to override the ‘Add to Cart’ button text for all external variations

More Details

Please note that this plugin has only been tested in a vanilla WordPress / WooCommerce
installation without any other plugins. If you have other plugins that modify
the functionality of the Add to Cart button, this plugin may not work or
cause unintended consequences.

Source code for this plugin can be found at Github

You can find this plugin at

Known Issues

When the number of variations exceeds 30, the plugin stops working. This is due
to a WooCommerce limit and can be bypassed by using a filter as described here:


  1. Make sure you are running WooCommerce v4.0 or higher.
  2. Either add the plugin via Plugins > Add New, place the entire
    plugin into the ‘/wp-content/plugins/’ directory or upload it via the
    Plugins > Upload section.
  3. Activate the plugin through the ‘Plugins’ menu in WordPress
  4. Go into any variable product, and specify the external URL in a variation.
  5. Save the product, view it, select the variation with the external URL and
    click on Add to Cart.
  6. A new window should open with the external URL.
  7. To change settings, go to WooCommerce Settings -> Products -> External Variations.


Eost 16, 2023
Wonderful plugin and works great, too bad they don’t support it anymore. I’m loving the plugin and I use it to create my dream store, thanks to it it’s coming true.
Mae 28, 2023
Just what I needed, it works perfectly. I only wish that it continues to be supported. As the project is not under active development, I’d consider donating at some time to ensure compatibility.
Mezheven 27, 2022
WooCommerce by default doesn’t allow for multiple external links for product variations, so this plugin fills that void perfectly allowing you to link to different URLs for each product variation. Its a must have if you offer external bookings on a separate platform. Support is excellent as well!
Eost 27, 2020 1 reply
This plugin worked correctly for my website but there is room for improvement. Like:- 1. The plugin does not work in the product’s quick view, it directly adds the product to the cart instead of taking to the external link. Still, I’m rating this plugin 5 stars because this plugin did what it said. But I always hope that the developers will improve this with time. Thanks for providing us with this awesome plugin.
Read all 8 reviews

Contributors & Developers

“WC External Variations” is open source software. The following people have contributed to this plugin.




  • Re-added HTOS compatibility code


  • Reverting 1.0.14 changes due to fatal errors


  • Added support for HPOS
  • Added note about no more active development


  • Fix for URLs with escaped characters


  • Minor bug fixes
  • Fixed issue with imports and ampresands


  • Added ability to retrieve variation attributes and data elements within the “[wcev_var_field]” shortcode.
  • Added a check to make sure external variations cannot be added to the cart if Javascript fails.
  • Minor cleanup of internationalization code


  • Fixed conflict with the Product Bundles extension


  • Fixed encoding/decoding in the external URL
  • Added a setting to open external link when the variation is selected


  • Refactored Javascript code to fix issues with quick view plugins and themes (#9)
  • Added donation link


  • Tested with WordPress v5.5 and WooCommerce v4.4.1
  • Added ability to change the ‘Add to Cart’ text on global and variation-specific basis (#3).


  • Added settings option to control whether links open in the same or new tab (#4).
  • Tested with WordPress v5.4.1 and WooCommerce v4.1.1


  • Tested with WordPress v5.3.1 and WooCommerce v3.8.1


  • Tested with WordPress v5.2, updated copyright dates


  • Added shortcode for variation external status
  • Remove the external SKU shortcode


  • Added shortcodes for variation custom fields and post date


  • Moved external SKU replacement into a shortcode
  • Added a shortcode for product attributes


  • Initial Release