Getting Started Guide: System Templates
- The different types of templates:
- Theme Templates - This is a general term referring to any template file that governs the appearance (the design and content) of the website. Theme Templates include Website Main Templates (also the Common Website Main Template), Website Menu Templates, Category and Manufacturer Templates, Product Templates, and Checkout Templates.
- Export Templates - This refers simply to the type of template file that is created to control and format information as it is downloaded from the shopping cart system onto a user's personal machine. Types of Export Templates include Product Exports and Order Exports.
- Email Templates - This term refers to templates that govern the appearance (the design and content) of emails that are sent from the shopping cart system either to mailing list subscribers, to paying customers, or to DropShippers. Types of Email Templates include the Order Confirmation Template, the Order Dropshipping Template, and the Order Gift Certificate Template.
- (About) System Keywords: System Keywords exist in order to provide the user with maximum customization for minimal effort. They enable website creators to insert store-specific tools, functions, and information merely by placing the proper keyword in the proper template. For Instance, the keyword AUTO_GENERATED_PRODUCT_NAME when inserted in a Product Template will automatically be replaced by the name of the product on the corresponding page. The usage of this keyword makes the generation of a multitude of product pages possible without having to design and code each individual page by hand. A variety of Keywords exist for every type of template, and in order for the site to maintain maximum functionality, Keywords should be considered throughout the creation of every template file.
About Theme Templates
- Template Hierarchy System - Because many different types of templates exist, there must also be a system of management. The Website Main Template is the basic and default governing template for a website’s design, and it may be constructed and edited in any way that a user wishes. But because a user may also have a need for multiple and different template files, the Template Storage provides the user with a repository to store as many of these files as he/she wishes. Whether the user wishes to assign them to individual Category Types, Categories, Subcategories, or Custom Pages for a more customized design or whether the user simply wishes to store old versions of the Website Main Template for the sake of backup, the Template Storage is the way to create and manage these subordinate files.
The Template Storage, however, does not house solely different varieties of the Website Main Template. Often contained within the Website Main Template are other templates, child templates. The Product Templates, for instance, are usually displayed inside of the Main Template when a user is viewing the generated webpage and are therefore child templates. The Template Storage is a system of management for these files as well, allowing for the creation, storage, and access of all child templates, which include Menu Templates, Product Templates, and Category/Manufacturer Templates.
- CSS Usage & Hierarchy - Like the templates, the CSS files have a system of management. The Website Main CSS is the default governing sheet for a website’s styles, and it may be edited in any way that a user wishes. But because a user may also have a need for multiple and different CSS files, the CSS Storage provides the user with a repository to store as many of these files as he/she wishes. Whether the user wishes to assign them to individual Category Types, Categories, Subcategories, or Custom Pages for a more customized design or whether the user simply wishes to store old versions of CSS for the sake of backup, the CSS Storage is the way to create and manage these subordinate files.
- Website File Storage - This is a storage system for additional files and images that will appear on the website. The generation engine will copy all contents of the Website File Storage to the images_templ folder of the destination website, where they may be accessed and called by all CSS and HTML files present on the website.
- Dynamic File Storage - This is a secondary storage system for additional files and images that does not require generation in order to be accessed. Often, this type of file storage is used for the placement of product images to be imported into the product database. The images_import section of the Dynamic File Storage allows you to have all files centrally located and readily available for the import engine. But because the Dynamic File Storage has more applications that just storing images for product imports, it is also automatically divided into another section, simply labeled Other. This area is where you would store all other types of files that you wish to keep open for access as well. For instance, informational PDFs may be stored in the Other section of the Dynamic File Storage for customers to view and download.
Theme Template Descriptions
The Main Template contains all components of the website that are constant between all pages. For instance, components like the header, menu, and footer usually comprise the Main Template. The Main Template should be created with HTML markup, and in order to maximize functionality should include at least a few system Keywords.
- Menu Template - The Menu Templates sections of the Template Storage provide the user with a way to override the default Menu Templates. With these templates, the user may customize the menu structure, styles, and containing HTML tags. They require the usage of Keywords defined in the corresponding sections and once HTML has been entered into the template, and the template has been saved, it must be set to override the default template through the Per User settings.
An Example Main Template
Product Templates govern the appearance (the design and content) of all Products’ brief and detailed descriptions. These templates can be assigned to different Category Types, Categories, or Subcategories (but not to individual Products) to make the appearance of the Products vary when desired by the user. As with all other types of templates, when creating a Product Template, a user should be mindful of the system Keywords that are designated for usage in its design.
- Related Product Template - Related Product Templates govern the appearance (the design and content) of Products that a user may wish to list on a particular Product’s detailed page as additional, companion, similar, or recommended products. These templates can be assigned to different Category Types, Categories, or Subcategoriesto make the appearance of the Related Products vary when desired by the user. When creating a Related Product Template, a user should be mindful of the system Keywords that are designated for usage in its design.
An Example Detailed Product Template
The Checkout Template governs the appearance (the design and content) of the shopping cart page that a customer will view when purchasing an item. Most commonly, it is a variation of the Website’s Main Template, although because the Checkout Template has its own section of the system that controls its appearance, it can be designed however the user wishes.
An Example CheckOut Template
The Category Template provides the user with the ability to design the layout of the Categories' descriptions through the usage of HTML and the utilization of the corresponding system Keywords. Like the Menu Templates, when a Category Template is designed and saved to the Template Storage, it must first be selected as the default Category Template in the Per User settings in order for it to override the default Category display.
An Example Category Template
Common Includes are a way for users to store pieces of hard-coded information or elements of a site that they may wish to call from other various locations. They enable the user to have a storage space for custom information an a way to easily access that information from various pages that he/she will designate. Basically, Common Includes are a method of inserting common elements of the website that the user may not wish to have in the Main Template for whatever reason.
Export Orders Template
The Export Orders Template allows the user to create a specific format for the exporting of order data into a file that may be opened, viewed, and edited like a database. It should utilize the corresponding system Keywords in order to properly function.
Export Products Template
The Export Product Template allows the user to create a specific format for the exporting of all manner of product data into a file that may be opened, viewed, and edited like a database. It should utilize the corresponding system Keywords in order to properly function.
An Example Data File Generated from an Export Products Template
Order's Confirmation Email
This is a customizable template of the design for the email the customers will receive when they have placed an order with the online store. Basically, this template governs the appearance of the email that a customer will receive when his/her order with the online store has been confirmed.
An Example Email Receipt Generated by an Email Template
DropShipping Confirmation Email
This is a customizable template of the design for the email the DropShipping Vendors will receive when an order has been placed for them. Basically, this template governs the appearance of all information that will be emailed to a DropShipper to notify him/her of an order.
Order's Gift Certificate Email
This is a customizable template governing the appearance of the email that recipients of online GiftCertificates will receive when an order has been placed for them. Basically, this is the design of an emailed, electronic gift certificate