For some reason, sometimes you add products to cart but the cart page stays empty (even if you can clearly see the cart widget has products for example).
But don’t worry – it might just be a simple cache issue (and if you don’t know what cache is that’s no problem either) or a “theme or plugin conflict”.
The WooCommerce Cart page is extremely delicate, and anything can break your website.
So, here’s your “Empty Cart” troubleshooting checklist you can follow without any technical knowledge.
I also recommend you read through the (many) comments, because many developers shared what worked for them too. Good luck!
Fix 1. Make sure there is no “red alert” under WooCommerce > System Status
The most important things are making sure all your “WC Pages” are correctly set, that the Cart page contains the correct shortcode, and that your theme has no WooCommerce template overrides (ideal) or up to date overrides.
Fix 2. Click the following buttons under WooCommerce > System Status > Tools
Mostly the “Clear all sessions” one can usually help you troubleshoot Cart problems (as well as shipping calculations issues, just so you know).
Fix 3. Make sure Theme, WooCommerce & WordPress are using updated, compatible versions
Some premium themes won’t notify you if there is an update available. You have to make sure you’re using the latest, Woo-compatible version. Check with your theme vendor, plugin developers and see if anything has been reported.
For example, you might have updated WooCommerce too soon – sometimes premium plugins/themes require a few days/weeks before they can adapt to the new changes (if major) and become 100% compatible.
Fix 4. Save (flush) your permalinks
Go to WordPress > Settings > Permalinks and click on “save” or “update” (blue button). This should flush the permalinks and give you a chance to test the cart again.
Fix 5. Check you have no spaces in your checkout endpoints
Go to WooCommerce > Settings > Advanced > Checkout Endpoints and make sure you have no spaces in your endpoints. This happened to a client a while ago and it took me ages to find out it was causing the empty cart.
Fix 6. Properly set up your WordPress cache plugin
Cart, Checkout and My Account pages should not be cached – if your WordPress cache plugin is for some reason caching WooCommerce pages, your cart will probably show as empty. Make sure to select a WooCommerce-compatible cache plugin 🙂
Also: ask your hosting to disable or properly set up server-side cache
Some hosts have their own cache system such as Varnish and this is sometimes applied to your website by default. Create a ticket or give them a quick call to find out if they have anything like that and if they can disable that as soon as possible.
For example: WPEngine uses its own cache. This might affect your WooCommerce Cart. Please contact support so they can create a caching exception list for WooCommerce and/or ajax files
Fix 7. Disable all plugins but WooCommerce
This is a typical troubleshooting operation. Disable all plugins and see if the Cart is back functioning. If YES, reactivate one plugin at a time and test the Cart again. As soon as you find the “guilty” plugin – yay! – time to substitute that plugin or see if there is an update available!
Fix 8. Try switching to a default WordPress Theme (e.g. TwentySixteen)
This is to prove the error is not theme-related. You won’t lose any content if you switch between themes, so don’t worry. If the error goes away, then check with your theme developers and report the bug 🙂