Why can't orders sync backwards from Xero into WooCommerce?

Learn how to troubleshoot when orders are not able to sync backwards from Xero into WooCommerce.

Written by the MyWorks Team

Updated at June 28th, 2023

A pre-sales question we often encounter from potential or new users regarding syncing orders backwards: From Xero into WooCommerce. MyWorks Sync will sync new and updated orders from WooCommerce into Xero automatically - but it does not currently have support for syncing orders in the opposite direction - from Xero into WooCommerce.

There are a few reasons for this, and these are detailed below. Typically this sounds like a helpful ability, but in real-world workflows, there's generally very little need/logic for syncing orders in this direction.

  1. It’s rare that this even makes sense in an accounting/order workflow. If you’re creating orders (as an invoice or sales receipt) in Xero, there’s seldom a logical reason to need them in WooCommerce, because the purpose of WooCommerce is to allow users to place new orders. If you want your customers to be able to see these orders in their WooCommerce account, that’s what our feature to 'View Xero invoices in WooCommerce account area' is for.
  2. It’s also technically very challenging/not straightforward to sync an order backwards into WooCommerce due to how the data is structured differently in Xero - for example: which customer should the order be tied to in WooCommerce, and what if the customer isn’t in WooCommerce? Because of this, even if MyWorks Sync were able to sync an order back into WooCommerce, 99% of the time, there would be an accuracy issue with it, based on how Xero would feed us this information.
  3. For users needing orders to show in WooCommerce, we recommend entering the order manually in WooCommerce first and letting MyWorks sync them into Xero. There are also many plugins that make this process easier/faster in WooCommerce (aka for phone orders).
  4. Most importantly, even though we don’t sync the order backwards into WooCommerce, we can sync the inventory that was changed in Xero by that order back into WooCommerce. So, for example, if an order is created in Xero for two widgets, the Xero inventory will go down by 2, and even though that order won’t sync to WooCommerce, MyWorks will sync that inventory change into WooCommerce, so the inventory is always accurately reflected.