NEW! features in Sorting WooCommerce Pro plugin

Today I’ve released a new version of the Sorting WooCommerce Pro Plugin. The plugin introduces two additional features proposed and suggested by customers.

Per Category Sorting!

The plugin up to v1.3.2 provided the option to create custom sorting options using custom attributes or default ones. However, the sorting options were general to the entire shop! The plugin now provides the option to specify that a sorting option appears only in a certain category. For as, Tea is different than Coffee. Both have different attributes that would be meaningless in the other’s context.

Sorting Icon Shortcode

Place the shortcode anywhere and get the sorting icon that changes the sorting of the items from ASC to DESC and vice versa for the same attribute! Check these awesome features and more in the plugin’s page.

[WooCommerce] Sort by Custom Attributes


I created a plugin for this plus many other features. Click here to view it.

To add extra sorting options to your WooCommerce pages using products’ meta data you can use the following

However, I wanted to add some sorting options that use the WooCommerce’s custom attributes. According to this thread, the product attributes are saved in a serialized format in the database and therefore it’s not feasible to do it directly.

To use the provided WooCommerce filters the attributes should be saved as meta data.

When a post that has some custom attributes set is updated, the submitted data ($_REQUEST) contains the following:

'attribute_names' =>
 array (
 0 => 'pa_pub-year',
 1 => 'pa_pub-author',
 'attribute_position' =>
 array (
 0 => '1',
 1 => '1',
'attribute_is_taxonomy' =>
 array (
 0 => '1',
 'attribute_values' =>
 array (
 0 => '1990',
 1 => '',
 2 => '',

The approach I followed is to get the submitted attributes and save them as post meta data. Afterwards, the code provided by WooCommerce to sort using attributes, with a tiny modification, worked successfully.

The code is as follows

/************* Add sorting by attributes **************/

 *	Defines the criteria for sorting with options defined in the method below
add_filter('woocommerce_get_catalog_ordering_args', 'custom_woocommerce_get_catalog_ordering_args');

function custom_woocommerce_get_catalog_ordering_args( $args ) {
	global $wp_query;
        // Changed the $_SESSION to $_GET
	if (isset($_GET['orderby'])) {
		switch ($_GET['orderby']) :
			case 'pa_pub-year' :
				$args['order'] = 'ASC';
				$args['meta_key'] = 'pa_pub-year';
				$args['orderby'] = 'meta_value_num';
	return $args;

 *	Adds the sorting options to dropdown list .. The logic/criteria is in the method above
add_filter('woocommerce_catalog_orderby', 'custom_woocommerce_catalog_orderby');

function custom_woocommerce_catalog_orderby( $sortby ) {
	$sortby['pa_pub-year'] = 'Sort by Year: Older to Newer';
	return $sortby;

 *	Save custom attributes as post's meta data as well so that we can use in sorting and searching
add_action( 'save_post', 'save_woocommerce_attr_to_meta' );
function save_woocommerce_attr_to_meta( $post_id ) {
        // Get the attribute_names .. For each element get the index and the name of the attribute
        // Then use the index to get the corresponding submitted value from the attribute_values array.
	foreach( $_REQUEST['attribute_names'] as $index => $value ) {
		update_post_meta( $post_id, $value, $_REQUEST['attribute_values'][$index] );
/************ End of Sorting ***************************/

This should be placed in the functions.php file of your theme.