ZeeStore Guide

Applies to All ZeeStore Derived Products too


This guide serves as a resource to users needing direction in navigating the ZeeStore interface. We detail the aspects involved with setting up your store: complete with keeping it up to date to the latest version, meeting the technical requirements, accessing the admin panel, and uninstallation. The User Guide covers the essentials tools used for managing your store front through the administration side. We will walk you through the important sections of the administration interface: Catalog, Extensions, Sales, Systems, and Reports. In this area we will cover which part of your store front each section is responsible for, and how you can modify them in the administration side to meet your store’s needs. Important store procedures, such as adding products to your store, keeping track of sales, managing customers, changing layouts, adding extensions, and more is explained in this guide. When you are finished reading this guide, you will be comfortable with using the ZeeStore interface to set up your online shop and maintain it over time.

A PHP Script (website files) requires certain system requirements in your web hosting server to be met for the online shop to operate properly - 99.99% Hosting companies are compatible with our PHP Scripts. First, You need to Register a Domain Name and have Web Hosting Space (Any Plan with minimum 2GB space) to make the uploaded files of the estore publicly available on the www. Domain names and hosting services can easily be purchased for an affordable price (about 2.95 USD per month). 

These extensions must be enabled for ZeeStore to install properly on the web server.

Required PHP libraries / modules

These extensions must be enabled to install properly on the web server. Most of the webhosting companies offer all these requirements (in-built).

System Requirements:
php script Script Friendly Cpanel Hosting eg: ZeeWebHosting
php script Web Server (preferably Apache-Linux)
php script PHP 5 or higher
php script MySQL 5 or higher
php script Other: Curl, Mod rewrite, Cronjobs, GD library, .etc... as mentioned in the script installation manual.

Installation:

Although Installation of this PHP Script is very simple and easy if you follow the instructions/manual guide that comes along with your purchase. However if you still require our assistance in setting up your website, You have Two options.

  1. When You Order this downloadable product by Clicking "Add to Cart" button above, you see Optionals - like Installation, Logo design, etc. You can choose these to add to order.
  2. Or You can also purchase installation service from us later at this Link (Charge is for One instance of installation and the new website is similar to the demo website which can be configured easily from backend panel.

 

  If you need any help, you can contact us through our Online Support System and submit a Ticket to installation department with your installation details. Please wait for responses - usually within 24 - 48 hours depending on our office work load.

 

The Quickstart Installation Starts with your Package Content that consists of a mainly a ZIP file called ToUploadOnline_Unzip.zip or similar after extracting the main package your downloaded after purchase.  Once your Hosting environment is ready, follow this quick guide on a cpanel hosting:

 

Installing ZeeStore

This guide will walk you through how to successfully install and uninstall ZeeStore. Also refer to PDF manual that came with your download.

Downloading and unzipping ZeeStore archive

The latest version of ZeeStore can be downloaded from the ZeeScripts website (recommended). This will download the compressed archive of that version of ZeeStore in a zip file.

If you don't have a program on your computer that can extract files from a zip file, WinRar can be downloaded for free. Unzipping the zip file will uncompress the ZeeStore archive so the files can be accessed by a web server.

When opening the zip file, the following files will be visible:

The "upload" folder contains all the files needed to upload ZeeStore to a web server.  When you are ready, you can extract the files from the zip file to a location of your choice on your computer or Directly upload the zip file and then extract in hosting file manager (recommended).

Uploading ZeeStore

At this step you should have a web server established and the ZeeStore archive extracted. We will now use File Transfer Protocol (FTP) client to upload these uncompressed files to a web server.

Installing and configuring the FTP client

We recommend using Filezilla as your FTP client. Filezilla is a free FTP client that will transfer the ZeeStore files to any web server specified. The FileZilla client (not the server) can be downloaded from http://filezilla-project.org/ and installed onto a computer.

When you open Filezilla you should see your computer's file directory on the left side. The next step is to locate where you saved the uncompressed ZeeStore archive and select on the  folder and the files. The directory needs to be left open as we continue. The right hand side is blank at the moment because the target website hasn't been connected to. When connected it will display the file directory of the web server.

 

Before we continue, we need to make sure that you have the following information about your website:

This information can be obtained by contacting your hosting provider.

Connecting to the Site Manager

Under the “File” menu, “Site Manager” should be opened in Filezilla. A window will pop up with the General tab open. You should fill in the information gathered above regarding hosting information, and press “Connect”. The right “Remote Site” side will now display the file directory of your website.

Uploading ZeeStore's files

If you haven't already located the ZeeStore upload folder on the left side, you need to do so now and keep it open. In the Remote Site directory (right side), you need to open the folder that the ZeeStore shop will be located in. The location of shop varies based on whether the you want the shop to be seen on the main page, a sub-folder, a subdomain, etc. If you want to make ZeeStore the main page, you would need to upload files to the root folder of their website.

Be aware that some hosting services require public files to be upload to a public directory, such as public_html, if they are to be visible on the website. You should check with your hosting provider to see where you can upload public files.

Once the location of the ZeeStore shop has been determined, all the content within the “upload” folder on the computer's (left) side of Filezilla must be selected, right-clicked, and uploaded. Uploading all the files might take a few minutes on the FTP client.

If you want the shop to be on the main page, for example www.shopnow.com, you must upload the contents of the “upload” folder, but not the “upload” folder itself. Including the “upload” folder will create a sub-folder, making the shop available only on www.shopnow.com/upload.

After Filezilla finishes uploading the files to the location specified, you should see the same files on both the left side(computer) and on the right side (the website); as seen in the screenshot below:

The Filezilla window should look similar to the above image (minus some directory details). This means that the ZeeStore files were successfully transferred the target site. The site now contains the files necessary to setup an ZeeStore shop.

Creating a database for the shop

The next step is to create a database on the MySQL server for ZeeStore to store a shop's data on. You should log into the site’s control panel and locate MySQL Databases. Using MySQL Databases, you can create a new database by entering a database name and a username/password to access this database. The user that was just created needs to be added to the database, along with enabling all of the necessary permissions. We will use this database information later when we are configuring ZeeStore using the auto-installer.

Launch the auto-installer

With a new database freshly created, we are now ready to install ZeeStore directly onto a website. You should open up a web browser and enter in the web address of where they uploaded ZeeStore. If the "install" folder in uploads was uploaded correctly, you should be automatically greeted by the following page:

This page is the installation page. The following steps will help you complete the installation process for ZeeStore.

Step 1. License

You may read through the license, check "I agree to the license", and press “Continue”.

Step 2. Pre-Installation

This step checks to see if the web server has the technical requirements and correct permissions to setup ZeeStore properly. If red marks are visible on #1 or #2, you need to make sure that these components are properly installed onto the web server. You should contact your hosting service if there are any issues with this. If there are red marks on #3 or #4, there might have been an issue with uploading the files using the FTP client. If everything is configured correctly and green marks are visible (as seen below), you may press "Continue".

Step 3. Configuration

You need to fill in the spaces below #1 by adding the database connection details (username/password, database name) established when you created the store's database using MySQL Databases. Under #2, you should create a new username and password for administration access to the ZeeStore shop. When finished, you may press "Continue".

Completing the installation

 

Step 4. Finished

Now that installation is complete, the "install" folder is no longer required. You should delete the “install” folder in the Remote Site section of Filezilla for security reasons. You now have the option to browse the frontend of your shop or choose to log into the administration side.

After the install, you should make the necessary steps towards improving the security of your server and ZeeStore store directory – DELETE the ‘install’ folder and any zip file uploaded for extraction online in file manager.

Watch this video tutorial on how to install ZeeStore (Or any derived product):

 

 

There are a number of steps required after installing ZeeStore to get started selling from your online store. This page is a helpful guide to getting started. An ZeeStore store is comprised of a Frontend and Admin interface. This guide will primarily focus on Admin interface functions and settings. These settings should be tested on the frontend before your site is launched. Following the steps in this guide will get your store to a ready to use state from installation. This guide assumes that you have admin login credentials and are able to login to your store's Admin interface via /admin, for example: http://zeeStore.com/demo/admin/.

Admin System Settings

Watch this Video Tutorial Below for Complete Admin Settings Overview:

 

Most General Settings are required. Under General Settings you will need to set your store's name, owner, address, email and phone number. These will be used for your store's contact page and order invoices.

Store Settings

Store Settings need to be changed from the default settings of "Your Store", etc., to your actual Store Name and a description of your store for search engines.

 

 

 

Local Settings

Local Settings allow you to choose the Country that your store is operating from. You can also choose the default currency for your store. If your store accepts multiple currencies, you will need to select whether ZeeStore should automatically update based on current exchange rates.

Image Settings

Next, you will need to select a logo for your store and upload it via the Image Settings tab. The logo must be a suitable size and shape for your theme, and should ideally be a jpg or png file. You can also choose a favicon at this point. This is the small image that displays in a browser when you visit a site. Typically, favicons are 16px by 16px, and ZeeStore requires a png file for favicons.

Server Settings

There are two important settings under the Server tab of your ZeeStore store's System Settings.

  1. SEO URLs. If you wish to have search engine optimized URLs in your store then you will need to set this to yes. You will also need to follow the instructions on setting up SEO URLs to make sure these work correctly, but it is an important step for getting the best possible result for your store from search engines.
  2. The Display Errors option should always be set to No for a live store. This will prevent your customers seeing any errors in your store's code while using your site. Your developer will still be able to diagnose and repair these issues using the error logs.

Accepting Payments and Adding Taxes

Once your settings are correct, you will need to select the payment gateway you wish to use. If your store needs to charge taxes on purchases, these should also be setup via your admin interface as described below.

Payment Gateways

ZeeStore supports many Payment Gateways out of the box. If your payment gateway is not supported, you can find and install additional gateways from the ZeeStore extension store. In order to choose the payment gateway your store will use, go to the Extensions menu, and the Payments submenu. This page will show you a list of all the available payment gateways. Your store can use more than one payment gateway.

In order to enable payment gateways first click the Install link corresponding to the gateway you wish to enable, then click the Edit link to set it up for your payment account. The Order field on each payment gateway's settings allows you to select the order in which payment options are displayed on your checkout page. Lower numbered payment options will always be shown above higher numbered options.

Taxes

ZeeStore offers a number of different Tax options by default. Taxes are location dependent, so you can charge different tax rates to customers in different geographical locations, according to local tax rules. Tax rates are set up under System > Localisation > Taxes > Tax Rates. If your required tax rate is not already present, you will need to create a new tax rate and add it. For example, the Tax Rate applicable to New Zealand is GST which is currently at 15%. New Zealand stores should therefore create a new Tax Rate called GST, set to 15%, and applicable to customers in the Geo Zone of New Zealand.

If you have product specific tax rates, you need to define each of these tax rates under the Tax Rates page. You will later choose which tax rate applies to each product, so you will be able to manage your product specific taxes at the product level.

 

Shipping Method

Stores selling tangible goods will need to edit their shipping options. Shipping methods are selected under the Extensions > Shipping menu item. Just as with the Tax Rates above, you will need to Install and Edit the settings for the Shipping Methods your store will support. The documentation contains full instructions on setting your Shipping Method.

 

Inventory Management

ZeeStore's installation includes demonstration data to help you see how to setup your ZeeStore store's inventory. This includes Categories, Manufacturers, Options, Attributes and Products and some home page Banners. These are the Apple iPods that you see when you first visit your store's frontend after installation. In order to get started with your store, you will need to replace these demo items with the actual categories, manufacturers and products your store will sell. There are two recommended ways to do this:

  1. You can manually edit these under the Catalog menu in your ZeeStore store's admin.
  2. You can use an import tool to simplify the upload of your products in bulk. This is more practical for larger inventories or dropshippers, and will allow you to remove all existing items and replace them at the same time.

Extensions, Modules and Themes

ZeeStore functionality, look and feel are all controlled by modules and themes. The final step to get started with ZeeStore is to check your Extensions > Modules page to ensure the functionality you want is enabled. The default banners can be modified under System > Banners, or removed via the Slideshow module at this point. You can also choose other modules that you wish to display, and the pages you wish to display them. The ZeeStore defaults are sensible and will not necessarily need editing to get started, except for the default home page banners, which are for demonstration purposes only.

Browsing the Store Front

This guide is intended to be used as an introduction to the ZeeStore default store front. The store front reveals how the customer views and interacts with the store.

The default theme

ZeeStore comes with a default theme after a fresh installation:

The products seen above are included as sample data with the ZeeStore installation. These products can easily be removed and replaced with the shop's products later.

This guide will cover the basics of browsing the store front with the default theme. You can find an ever expanding list of available themes at the ZeeStore Extension Directory.

Navigating the shop

The ZeeStore default theme makes navigating a shop's products easily accessible to its customers.

Anatomy of the home page

The home page is arguably the most important page in the shop, in terms of presentation. In most cases, this will be the first page that a customer interacts with (especially if they are directed to the store site from a search engine). The shop's homepage needs to be user-friendly, while at the same time highlighting the shop's products.

The first step in becoming familiar with the store front is understanding the anatomy of the ZeeStore default homepage.

The header

The header will be displayed at the top of the page, on every page of the store; not just the home page.

The header has the following navigation options:

The top menu

The top menu category only displays the top parent categories of products. See Categories for more information on how to create and assign product categories.

Like the header, the top menu will be displayed on every page. When the customer's mouse is dragged over a category, a drop down menu will display the sub-categories for that parent category.

When a parent category is clicked, the customer will be directed to the category page, which displays all the products within that category.

Slideshow

The slideshow displays several product banners of your choice by alternating the images in a slideshow. After a certain amount of time, one banner will shift to the the next banner. Banners in this slideshow are useful for highlighting certain products to be easily accessible by the customer. When the banner is clicked on, the customer will be directed to the product on the banner's page.

Unlike the top menu and header, the slideshow in the ZeeStore default can only be viewed on the home page in this position.

ZeeStore gives you the option of featuring specific products of their choosing on the home page.

The Featured section includes the product image, name, price; and an option to add the product directly to the Shopping Cart.

The carousel is only located on the Home Page in the default.

The footer is located at the bottom of every page, not just the Home Page. This block of miscellaneous links is useful in sorting relevant pages for the customer that may not logically sort anywhere else.

The organizational scheme of the footer can be divided into the following sections:

Product pages

The ZeeStore default product page will follow the structural format seen below (minus header/top menu/footer).

The product page can be divided into the following sections:

Category product listings

Category product listings enable customers to browse products similar to other products within the same category. This is especially helpful for customers looking to compare products, a feature that will be explained under Categories. The category page can be accessed a number of ways. It can be accessed from the top menu, when a customer clicks on one of the parent categories. Also, on product pages a customer can access the category product listing page by clicking on a category on the left side category block.

As seen above, the category block is displayed on the left-side like it is in the product page. There is space under the Category title at the top to add a description to the category. The "Refine Search" links to sub-categories of that category for the user to browse. The products can be displayed according to the customer's preference: in a list or grid. The above image is sorted in the listing format. The products can be sorted according to name, price, rating, or model in the "Sort By" box. The number of products displayed in the product listing can be changed in "Show" from 15 up to 100.

There is a section that gives space for each of the products within the category, providing a product image, description, price, and an Add to Cart option. There is an option to add the product to a wish list. Another option for the product is to "Add to Compare".

Product compare

The "Add to Compare" feature in the product section allows the customer to compare the different specifications, features, and price of a number of products s/he might be interested in.

The customer is given the option to add one of the compared products to the cart if they want to. Pressing "Continue" will bring the user back to the home page.

Shopping Cart page

Once a customer adds a product to the cart, they can access the shopping cart in the header under "Shopping Cart".

The shopping cart gives an overview of the product selected by including the categories "Image", "Product Name", "Model", "Quantity", "Unit Price", and "Total". The customer has an option to add a coupon code or gift voucher, or estimate shipping & taxes, before heading to the checkout. The "Continue Shopping" button links back to the homepage.

Creating an account

Before a customer can continue checking out a product from the shopping cart, the customer needs to select either guest checkout or log into their account. The guest checkout doesn't require log-in details. Returning customers may want to make an account with the store.

There are a few ways a customer can make an account:

  1. Checkout

Step 1 of the check out process allows the user to make an account before continuing with payment. Selecting "Register Account" will change Step 2 of checkout from Billing to Account & Billing details. Account & Billing asks for the same personal details as Billing, except that it asks for the user to create a password for their account. After Step 2 is completed, the customer may continue with the checkout process.

  1. Header- "create an account"

Clicking the "create an account" in the header will direct the customer to the "Register an Account" page. The same personal details included in the checkout will need to be filled in here.

  1. Header- "My Account"
     

Clicking "My Account" in the header will direct the customer to the "Account Login" page. This page gives the customer an option to log in if they already have an account, or create a new account. In the "New Customer" section the customer can click "Continue" under Register Account to be directed to the "Register an Account" page.

Checkout

Once a product has been added to the cart, the customer can continue to the checkout to make their product purchase. The Checkout page can be accessed in the header section of every page (found under the search box). Customer checkout using ZeeStore is a simple process that can be completed in 6 steps.

  1. Step 1: Checkout options

The customer can log into or register their account (as explained above), or select guest checkout.

  1. Step 2: Billing details

Personal details including "First Name", "Last Name", "E-mail", and "Telephone" are filled into a form. It also requires the customer's address details.

  1. Step 3: Delivery details

In Billing Details, the user can check a box to indicate that the delivery details and billing details are the same. This will cause it to skip over this step to Delivery Method. If the delivery etails are different from the billing details the customer can enter this information in a form in this section.

  1. Step 4: Delivery method

A method of shipping is selected here. A comment box is added for the customer to add comments about their order.

  1. Step 5: Payment method

The customer selects their method of payment here and may add comments in the comment box.

  1. Step 6: Confirm order

In this last step, the customer will see an overview of their purchase; including the product description, quantity, and price (with tax & shipping).

Connecting the ZeeStore administration

ZeeStore's administration side of the store is where you can modify features, upload images, add products, keep track of customers, manage payments, and much more. Customization in the admin affects how the customer will interact with a store: by modifying the look, structure, and content of the store front.

Accessing the admin panel

To access the admin panel, type in location of the store into the web browser followed by "/admin". For example, if your store is located at "www.chocolatechip.com", your admin panel is located at "www.chocolatechip.com/admin". Even if the store is located in a sub-folder or on a sub-domain of their site, adding "/admin" to the end of the store's path will lead you to the administration side.

If the name of the folder is changed by you during installation, the location of the admin panel is changed to that new name. For example, if the name of the admin folder is changed to admin1, the new location of the admin panel is at "www.chocolatchip.com/admin1".

Changing the name of the admin folder to another name is important for improving an online shop's security. The config.php file needs to be edited to indicate the correct file path and location.

A username and password is created in Step 3 of the auto-installer during installation. This information can now be used to fill in the administrator login details.

After filling in the correct username and password, pressing the "Login" button will direct you to the ZeeStore dashboard. When you first login to your shop, the dashboard will be blank (as seen below), because there isn't any statistical data to be analyzed yet.

Entering the administration through the Dashboard

The dashboard is the first thing you will see when entering ZeeStore's admin. The main function of the dashboard is to give the shop owner an overview of how the shop is performing. There are 3 sections of the dashboard that can help you understand the statistical data collected by your store:

ZeeStore calculates the numerical values for "Total Sales", "Total Sales This Year", "Total Orders", "No. of Customers", "Customers Awaiting Approval", "Reviews Awaiting Approval", "No. of Affiliates", "Affiliates Awaiting Approval", to alert you to approvals and keeping track of sales.

A graph is provided to track the chronological progress of the store relative to the amount of orders and customers over time. The x value is time; which can be hours, days, or months depending on the range selected. The y value displays the number of total orders(yellow) and total customers(blue).

A list that displays the last 10 orders and their details ("Order ID", "Customer", "Status", "Date Added", "Total", and "Action")

Filter

Filter

Filter is a handy tool used regularly throughout the ZeeStore administration. You may type into one of the information field for the item on the item list. Pressing Filter will "filter out" all the items in the list that do no match the criteria entered in the space, leaving only the items that match. With Filter, you can quickly locate any information stored in list form. Products, Categories, Customers, Reports, Orders, and more all use Filter as the main search tool to locate items in a list.

For examples, if you would like to look up a product in the product list, you can use "Filter" as a shortcut to search for that product. This can be helpful when there is large amounts of product and you would like to edit a specific product without having to browse through every page for it. The search boxes are located in the first row above the product list.

look products filter

In the screenshot above, "nikon" is typed into the "Product Name" information field. "Filter" only displays what matches "nikon". The Nikon D300 is the only product displayed because it is the only product name containing the words "nikon" in this shop. If the "nikon" wording was present in more than one product name, the "Filter" button would display all of them.

Image manager

The Image Manager is a tool used in the administration to upload image files. Banners, product images, the store logo, and manufacturers will all need images uploaded using the Image Manager.

Clicking "Browse Files" will open up a new window called the "Image Manager". The "image" folder will be available in the left column, which can be found in the root folder where ZeeStore was installed. You can use an FTP client to add and delete product images in your "image" folder. Another way to add images is to click the "Upload" button in the toolbar, which will open up your computer's file directory to directly add them. The images below were provided for the default products. Select an image by clicking on one, and press the "Delete" button in the toolbar to delete it.

adding image manager

 

Adding multiple languages

With shops serving a wider array of customers across multiple countries, it may become necessary to add multiple language options for your customers. The default language provided from the installation is English. Other available languages can be viewed on the ZeeStore Language page.These language packs can be downloaded through the Extension Directory.

FTP a language pack to an ZeeStore store

Any language pack that isn't English needs to be uploaded to ZeeStore, post installation, using an FTP client like FileZilla. Before we continue, please make sure that you have downloaded your language pack from the Extension Directory and uncompressed the download contents to a location on your computer. Connect to your ZeeStore store in the FTP client. Locate the root directory of where the ZeeStore store was installed. From there, open the path Catalog>Language. If this is your first time here, you will see an "english" folder already in this location. In Catalog>Language, upload your new language pack to this location.

 

Adding a language to the administration

The ZeeStore administration requires some specific information in the System area about the language after you FTP it. Visit Localisation to see what fields are required. After the language is saved there, the language name will appear in the language list under Localisation>Language.

Changing a language in the store front

Saving a language pack in Localisation will make it immediately available in the store front. The language area is located in the header of every page, next to currency. In achieve the example below, a German language pack was downloaded and FTP'd to ZeeStore. By assigning German an assorting order of 2, it is displayed right of English in the footer of every page of our store. The customer can click on the German flag in the header to change the language.

Language

The language section lets you manage the languages available for the store front. ZeeStore provides English as the default language after installation. To add multiple languages to the site you need to install a language pack. Language packs can be acquired from the Extension Directory. See Adding multiple languages to learn how to add a language pack to ZeeStore.

The new language can be added to the site under System>Localisation>Language. The following information will be needed to save the language:

language page backend

Currency Settings

Currency

The currency sections lets you select which currencies are available for use in store front. The default currency will display all the product prices in that currency. The currency preference can be changed by the customer in the header section of any page in the front office.

In the store below, we have enabled the Euro, Pound, and US Dollar.

currency backend page

The following information is needed about a currency to add it to your store:

adding currencey

 

Tax Settings

Taxes

The Taxes section in Localisation allows the administrator to create the taxes that will be applied to specific products in the store.

Tax rates

The tax rate will be used to calculate the taxes from an order. The following information is needed to save a tax rate to the administration:

add tax rate backend

Tax class

Tax classes can store multiple tax rates into one category. The taxes can be customized to calculate the taxes based on the payment address (customer) or the store's address. Tax classes require the following information:

add tax class backend

The tax class must be added to each product individually in order to apply tax rates for a purchase. The tax class field is located under the Data tab in Products. See Products for more information.

 

SEO keywords

ZeeStore allows the use of search engine optimized URLs for product, category, manufacturer and information pages. SEO keywords are defined per product, category, manufacturer and information page, stored in a database table (url_alias), looked up at each page request, and translated into an internal URL.

In order to use SEO keywords, they must be enabled in the store settings page, server tab in the admin interface.

seo settings

A correctly formatted .htaccess file must be present in the root of the ZeeStore installation (beside the admin and catalog folders). The contents of the .htaccess file are shown below:

# 1.To use URL Alias you need to be running apache with mod_rewrite enabled.
# 2. In your ZeeStore directory rename htaccess.txt to .htaccess.
# For any support issues please visit: http://www.ZeeStore.com
Options +FollowSymlinks
# Prevent Directoy listing
Options -Indexes
# Prevent Direct Access to files
<FilesMatch "\.(tpl|ini|log)">
 Order deny,allow
 Deny from all
</FilesMatch>
# SEO URL Settings
RewriteEngine On
# If your ZeeStore installation does not run on the main web folder make sure you folder it does run in ie. / becomes /shop/
RewriteBase /
RewriteRule ^sitemap.xml$ index.php?route=feed/google_sitemap [L]
RewriteRule ^googlebase.xml$ index.php?route=feed/google_base [L]
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-f
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-d
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_URI} !.*\.(ico|gif|jpg|jpeg|png|js|css)
RewriteRule ^([^?]*) index.php?_route_=$1 [L,QSA]
### Additional Settings that may need to be enabled for some servers
### Uncomment the commands by removing the # sign in front of it.
### If you get an "Internal Server Error 500" after enabling any of the following settings, restore the # as this means your host doesn't allow that.
# 1. If your cart only allows you to add one item at a time, it is possible register_globals is on. This may work to disable it:
# php_flag register_globals off
# 2. If your cart has magic quotes enabled, This may work to disable it:
# php_flag magic_quotes_gpc Off
# 3. Set max upload file size. Most hosts will limit this and not allow it to be overridden but you can try
# php_value upload_max_filesize 999M
# 4. set max post size. uncomment this line if you have a lot of product options or are getting errors where forms are not saving all fields
# php_value post_max_size 999M
# 5. set max time script can take. uncomment this line if you have a lot of product options or are getting errors where forms are not saving all fields
# php_value max_execution_time 200
# 6. set max time for input to be recieved. Uncomment this line if you have a lot of product options or are getting errors where forms are not saving all fields
# php_value max_input_time 200
# 7. disable open_basedir limitations
# php_admin_value open_basedir none

The .htaccess.txt file should be present in your store's root folder. If not, copy and paste the text above into a text editor and save it as ".htaccess". If the .htaccess.txt file is present, please change its name to ".htaccess". With the .htaccess file changed, you should be able to add unique SEO keywords to individual products, manufacturers, categories, and information pages.

The SEO keywords you add will be displayed in the url of the page, so they must be unique for each product, product category, etc. Let's see what happens when we add the SEO keyword, "nikon-camera", to our Nikon D300 product under the Data tab:

 

If our store is located at "www.mystore.com", the new URL of the Nikon D300 product page will be located at "www.mystore.com/nikon-camera". Overall, creating SEO keywords will clean up your store page's URL and optimize your page for search engines.

Categories

In the default theme of the store front, parent categories are listed in the top menu of the home page, and on the left side of product pages. This navigational feature is used to guide customers to similar products within the same category. Exposing customers to different products within a category lets the customer compare the similarities and differences between products to make the most informed purchase. When adding products to the store, you will be asked for a product category to sort them in. It is a good idea to establish these categories before adding products, to save yourself the trouble of adding the category name to the products later.

When adding a product without a product category, the product will not show up under any categories in the front end of the store. The product page can only be accessible if the customer types in the product name, one of the product tags in the search box, or visits the product through a manufacturer page. If you want this product to be more visible to your customers in the store front, we suggest that the category is created prior to adding the product.

To access the Category page in the administration, hover over the Catalog button and click on Category in the drop-down. You will be a directed to a page that displays the category names of the store products (as seen below).

look category

The categories above were included with the default products provided by the install. You may delete them to make room for the store's product categories. To delete, check the box next to the row that the category is listed on. When the products selected for deletion are checked, "Delete" can be clicked on in the upper right corner. This should remove the product categories completely.

The ">" symbol points from a parent category to a sub-category. "Laptops & Notebooks > Windows" indicates that "Windows" is a sub-category sorted under the parent category "Laptops & Notebooks".

The Sort Order indicates the order that the categories are displayed in the top menu and category box on the product page. Desktop (sort order-1) will be sorted above Laptops & Notebooks (sort order-2) because it has a higher priority.

Leaving "Sort Order" blank will organize the sections in alphabetical order.

Clicking "Edit" under "Action" will direct the administrator to a form to change the category information. Clicking "Insert" will allow the shop owner to insert more products to the site.

Create a category

Before you learn how to add products, you will need to understand how to create product categories. Product category is an essential organizational feature in ZeeStore. ZeeStore organizes the structure of an online store around these product categories. Every product category gets their own space in the store to display all the available products for that category.

Organizing products into categories is useful for navigating a store's inventory in both the store front and administration side. In the administration, creating categories for products will help the shop owner keep track of specific products within a category. In the store front, customers will be able to browse their favorite products by category. Category pages can be accessed in the top menu and from the category box in the product page.

Before inserting products into ZeeStore, you should take some time to brainstorm and establish categories for your products. Think of how the products in your store can be organized into groups in a logical manner. Generally, you would want to start with creating a broad parent category, and move narrower into specification with each sub-category below it. For example, a broad category such as Electronics is a good parent category. Under the Electronics, a sub-category named "Computers" can be created; and under that category, "Laptops". You can see how each category becomes more specific as we progress. Putting effort into this task will improve a store's usability, ultimately bringing customers to other products in the store that may interest them.

Go to Catalog > Category in the administration. If this is your first time in the category section you will see a list of categories created for the default products. You should feel free to delete them to make room for your store's products. To create a new category for products you can click "Insert" in the upper right corner. You will be directed to the category's information page. Category information can be filled out under three tabs: "General", "Data", "Design".

Category General

General Tab

The General tab asks for basic information regarding the product category:

Category Data

Data Tab

The Data tab asks for the following data:

The top menu only displays parent categories. If this category is a sub-category, it will not be displayed in the top menu.

Shop owners with many product sub-categories may need to pay special attention to how many columns are allowed. If all the available sub-categories are allowed for a product category, the entire store page in the store front will be filled with sub-categories when hovered over.

category data

 

Category Design

Design Tab

The design tab consists of the "Layout Override" feature. In this feature, you can choose to override a layout, such as the 'Account' page, to include the category on that page. For more information on layouts, see Modules. You can just leave it blank for the meantime.

look category design

Pressing 'Save' in the upper right corner will save the information in the General, Data, and Design tabs, and add the product category to the category list. With the product categories created, you are now ready to add products to the shop.

Product Overview

Products in the administration

Products are the bread and butter of the average ZeeStore store. Therefore, it is essential that you learn how to manage your store's product inventory using the ZeeStore administration side. Before adding products, you must make sure that you have all the necessary information about the product you are adding to the store. To get detailed information of your products to your customer, ZeeStore requires this information to be gathered beforehand. The more information given to ZeeStore about a specific product, the more informed the customer will be about that particular product when purchasing it from your store.

Products overview

The Product section, accessed under Catalog, will display all the products available in the store.

Every row of product will contain the following information:

Checking an individual box in the first column will select the product information within the same row. Once selected, you can choose to "Copy" or "Delete" the product. "Copy" will duplicate the product and it's information categories. "Delete" will remove the product selection (including its information) completely.

look products

If you would like to look up a product in the product list, you can use "Filter" as a shortcut to search for it. For more information on the Filter tool, visit Filter. Pressing "Insert" in the top right corner will direct the administrator to a form to add new products.

Managing and adding products in the catalog

The complete list of store products can be found under Catalog > Products. If this is your first time in the Product section, you will notice the default products left over from the installation. These products can be used to experiment with and explore the ZeeStore features before launching your store. You will eventually need to delete these products to make room for your store's products.

To delete the default products:

  1. Check the box left of the "Image column" in the list. This should select all the products on the page.
  2. Click the "Delete" button on the top right side.
  3. Press "OK" when a window pops up asking "Delete/Install cannot be undone! Are you sure you want to do this?".

There should now be a blank list to add individual products to. The "Insert" button directs the administrator to a page requiring product information under the following tabs:

Before products are added to the administration, product categories must already be established by the administrator. See Categories before continuing with this section. With the product categories created, products are now ready to be added to the catalog.

ZeeStore currently only allows products to be added one at a time, not in mass quantity. Extensions can be purchased to add large amounts of product at once. See Product import for more information.

Saving the product

At this point in the guide, you will have completed all the steps and filled out all the appropriate information for the product. To complete the process of adding this product, click "Save". When you return to the Products page under Catalog, you will now see this product listed. You can choose to modify any of this information included above, at any time, by clicking "Edit" across from the product.

 

Product General

General Tab

The format of the General tab is identical to the General tab when creating a product category, with the addition of the Product Tags feature:

adding products general

Products Data

Data Tab

The data tab includes all the product criteria that will be included on the product page in the store front for customers to view:

adding products data

Fill in the spaces above with the following information:

Products Links

Links Tab

The Links tab specifies which pages ZeeStore will show the product on:

adding product links

 

 

Product Attributes

Attribute Tab

Attributes are the specifications that are compared between products in the Product Comparison. Attributes are originally created under Catalog > Attributes. In Catalog > Products, selecting an attribute will assign an attribute directly to a specific product. If ZeeStore was just installed, it will be blank. Press "Add" and a form below should appear. Fill in the blanks with the attribute name and information, and click "Add Attribute".

adding products attribute

For example, if a customer wanted to compare monitor size of a computer monitor with another product with a monitor, we could create an attribute for the product. Under "Attribute" we would call it "Monitor size"; in the Text box area we would type the dimensions of the monitor of that specific product, and click "Add Attribute". See Attributes for a more in depth explanation of attributes.

Product Options

Option Tab

Options are extra selections that a customer can make on the Product page before adding the product to the shopping cart. Options are first created under Catalog > Options, then assigned to a product that is created under Catalog > Products.

adding option choose

One example of an option is "size". Begin by typing "size" into the search box. Size should appear in a drop down box. Select it, and click on the green add button. On the right, click "Add Option Value".

adding option value

The Option Values were previously created in the Options section under Catalog. In this section any option can be added, such as "Large". To subtract from the quantity every time a product is purchased with this option, you can select "Yes" under "Subtract Stock". An increase of price can be added to the option value, points, and weight. Click "Add Option Value" to assign that information to that specific option value. You can click "Remove" to erase the option value. See Options for a more in depth explanation of the options feature.

Product Discount

Discount Tab

The Discount Tab needs the following information to include a discount for a product:

adding discount

Press "Add Discount" once the information has been filled in. Click "Remove" to remove the discount from the product.

 

 

 

Product Images

Image Tab

The images tags let the administrator add additional product images to the product page. The main image was already uploaded in the Data tab of Products, so keep in mind these images will be included below that main image on the product page.

adding main product images

You may click "Add Image", then "Browse" to select an image from the Image manager. Assign a number for sorting order. "1" will make it the first additional image, while every descending sorting number will follow it. The image above is an example from a product page in the store front. The large main image was added in the Data tab. The images above were added in the "Image" tab, with the farthest top left assigned as 1, and the following images assigned a lower priority.

Products Reward Points

Reward Points Tab

Reward points is a feature of ZeeStore that assigns customers "loyalty points" for purchasing products from the store. Customers can use these acquired points as a currency to purchase products from the store. You can assign this product a certain number of reward points required for a customer to purchase it with. If you don't want to allow this product to be bought with reward points, you can simply leave this area blank.

 

Product Design

Design Tab

If you want a product available on other layouts besides the product page, you can choose to override certain layouts in order to include that product on that page.

 

Filter

Filter

Filter is a handy tool used regularly throughout the ZeeStore administration. You may type into one of the information field for the item on the item list. Pressing Filter will "filter out" all the items in the list that do no match the criteria entered in the space, leaving only the items that match. With Filter, you can quickly locate any information stored in list form. Products, Categories, Customers, Reports, Orders, and more all use Filter as the main search tool to locate items in a list.

For examples, if you would like to look up a product in the product list, you can use "Filter" as a shortcut to search for that product. This can be helpful when there is large amounts of product and you would like to edit a specific product without having to browse through every page for it. The search boxes are located in the first row above the product list.

look products filter

In the screenshot above, "nikon" is typed into the "Product Name" information field. "Filter" only displays what matches "nikon". The Nikon D300 is the only product displayed because it is the only product name containing the words "nikon" in this shop. If the "nikon" wording was present in more than one product name, the "Filter" button would display all of them.

 

 

 

Attributes

Attributes in the administration

The attributes section lets you edit the attributes compared between products in "Product Comparison". When viewing products in the store front, customers have the option to add products to "Add to Compare" to analyze the similarities and differences between products in the store. Attributes can be used to describe the size, weight, color, and any other specifications of the product that have potential for comparison. You can create these attributes in the Catalog > Attributes area. To add attributes directly to products, visit the Attribute tab under Products.

Try to create universal attributes that are consistent across specific categories of products. For example, if your shop sells computer monitors, you could create a 'screen resolution' attribute. This attribute needs to be added consistently to all the computer monitor products in your store. It is more likely that a person will compare two computer monitors, rather than comparing a computer monitor and a random product with different attributes.

Attribute Groups

An attributes group contains related attributes that can be compared under Product Comparison. Attributes such as 'Clockspeed' and 'No. of Cores' can be organized under the larger attribute group of 'Processor'.

look attribute groups

To create an attribute group, go to Catalog> Attributes> Attributes Group and click "Insert". This form only requires an attribute group name in "Attribute Group Name". Adding the "Sort Order" is optional. Adding a sort order will affect the arrangement order of attributes under Product Comparison. The attribute groups created here can have individual attributes added to them later.

Creating attributes

In Catalog > Attributes, attributes can be created, edited, and deleted.

look attributes name

To create a new attribute, click "Insert". This button will direct you to a page asking for the "Attribute Name", "Attribute Group", and "Sort Order".

look attributes

The "Sort Order" determines the position of the attribute if the product has multiple attributes assigned to it. The "Attribute Group" is the larger group of attributes that this particular attribute will belong to when assigned.

Attributes in the store front

At this point in the guide, you should be familiar with creating attributes on the administration side; so let's see how creating an attribute in the back-end can affect the store front of the shop. For the purposes of this example, we want to add a 'Display' attribute group to help our customers compare the differences between "aspect ratio" and "monitor size" attributes for our default laptop products in our store.

Creating an attribute and attribute group for Product Comparison

The first step is to create a broader attribute group to store our individual attributes, aspect ratio and monitor size. We will create 'Display' as our attribute group, under Catalog > Attributes > Attributes Groups.

display attributes

The next step is to create the specific attributes, Aspect Ratio and Monitor Dimensions, with descriptions under Catalog > Attributes > Attributes.

aspect ratio

We type the name, Aspect Ratio, then assign it to the broader attribute group "Display". We assign 1 to sort order because we want this attribute to be above all the other attributes in the Display attribute group. When we click "Save", "Aspect Ratio" will be added to the attributes list. We create another attribute named "Monitor Dimensions", but we will change the sort order to 2, so that it appears below "Aspect Ratio" under Product Comparison.

Assigning the attributes to a product

Now that we have the attributes created, we need to edit the individual products to contain these attributes. To be consistent, we will add "Aspect Ratio" and "Monitor Dimensions" to all of our laptop products. We don't want a scenario where our customers need to compare different laptop products, but only one or two of our laptops has the "Aspect Ratio" listed to compare.

To add attributes directly to a product we go to Catalog > Products, and click edit for our HP laptop product. In the Attributes tab, we add the Aspect Ratio and Monitor Size attributes individually. The text description must be manually added, so we add 16:10 to "Aspect Ratio" and 19.3" x 27.2" to our monitor size. As seen below, when we start typing "Monitor", both the attribute group and attribute name is displayed in the drop down box..

attributes

We will continue on by adding these two attributes individually to all of our laptop products.

Viewing the attributes in Product Comparison

In the store front we added the Sony VAIO and HP LP3065 laptops to our product comparison from their respective product pages. Under the Product Details we can see our Display attributes group (highlighted by the red box). Since we gave the group a sort order of 1 when we inserted it into the attribute group list, it was the first attribute group displayed. Within the "Display" group, our "Aspect Ratio" and "Monitor Size" attributes are listed according to their sorting order. The specific text we included in the attribute section under Products is shown under each respective product column.

add attribute

Our customers can now make a more informed decision with their purchase by comparing the Display attributes in Product Comaprions. Understanding how to use attribute groups and attributes with products can help raise the level of customer satisfaction.

 

Options

Options in the administration

The Options section, under Catalog, lets you customize what details the customer sees when checking out a product. On the product page, the "Available Options" section is displayed under the price. The option for that product must be selected before the customer can add the product to the shopping cart.

The image below displays the default options, but you can choose to edit or delete any of them. Essentially, the options can be created to fit whatever added specifications are needed for the customer to purchase the product. The "Insert" button will direct you towards creating a new option.

look options

For example, if you wanted the customer to choose a size for a particular product before checking out, you can create a "Size" option.

The "Type" dropbox will show a variety of ways to display this option:

look options size

For the "size" option, three option value's were created : "Small", "Medium", and "Large". Images could be added for the option, but since it is referring to size the option value name will suffice. If the option was "Color", having images of the color would be appropriate.

Adding options to products

To apply the options to a specific product, you will need to edit the Option tab under Catalog > Products. Options could to be created prior to adding a product, then added during product creation in the Options tab.

Options in the store front

With the general concept behind "Options" explained above, we can now go into a detailed example of using the Option section to alter the checkout experience in the store front. For this example, we will be adding Options to the iPod Classic product example provided from installation.

The image below was taken from our iPod Classic product page. We can see that product details such as manufacturer, product code, availability, and price are given product details next to the product image. The only interactive option seen below is the "Qty", or quantity. In the space provided next to quantity, the customer can alter the amount of iPod classics to be added to the shopping cart.

iPod Classic

For the purpose of this example, we want to add more options to customize the type of iPod Classic that will be purchased by the customer. Under Catalog > Options we will insert new options with varying option values. ZeeStore allows for four different types of options for customers to select under Options: Choose, File, Date, and Input.

Choose type

The "Choose" Type lets the customer select specific option values. Among these choose types are the following sub-types:

In our stock we have different colors of classic iPods: black, silver, and white. The Option Name to describe these colors will be "Color". We decided that we want to use a radio type option to display the color options. We want this option to be the first option in the list, so we gave it a sort order of 1. We added 3 option value names for our colors: Black, White, Silver. If we wanted to, we could have uploaded an image of the iPods in their different colors next to their respective value names using the Image manager.

option color

Next we will move to the Options tab to add our option to a product under Catalog > Products. This section is different than the Options section under Catalog because it will directly assign a previously created option to a product. We clicked the green '+' icon and typed in Color to bring up our "Color" option that we made under Catalog > Options. In the Option Value column, we added 3 values to enable the Black, Silver, and White option values to be displayed. In addition, we added the quantity of each color available, selected "yes" to subtract stock, and added 10 points to the Reward Points. We could add an increase or decrease in price for select colors, or indicate the weight, but we chose not to.

option color product

Saving this Color option under the Options tab will automatically change how this product is viewed on it's product page. The product page can be seen in the screenshot below. Already, we discover that a new section has been added under price named "Available Options". We see our Color Option with the three colors in a radio selection format. The red asterick means that this option must be selected before adding it to the cart. If a selection isn't made, the customer cannot add the product to the Shopping Cart.

product page option color

File type

The file type requires the customers to upload a file of their own before adding the product to their cart. In our example, we want the customer to upload an image file before checking out so that we can add the image to a custom iPod case. There is only one option under File Type called File.

ipod  case custom image

When we move to the Option tab under the Catalog > Product to add the option to the product, there is only an selection to require the file or not. There isn't any option values since it is up to the user to upload their own file from their computer.

ipod case custom image product

The result of saving this option can be seen on the iPod Classic product page. The sort order of 2 set the file type option below the Color option. When the customer clicks on the "Upload File" button, they can select a file from their computer that will be included in the checkout.

ipod case cusom image product page

Date type

The Date type allows for three different types of selection: Date, Time, or Date & Time.

For our product, we want the customer to include a specified date for delivery, so we title the Option Name as "Delivery Date". We select the Date type because we don't want the exact time to be included. We added a sort order of 4 because we want this to be the last option viewed before the customer adds the product to their cart.

delivery date

In the Option tab we can determine if it is a required option and what date we want included in the space. The customer can change the date using the calendar on the product page, so the date of the option value doesn't matter too much.

delivery date porduct

The result of the date type can be seen in the product page image below. The Delivery Date was sort number was 4, so it falls below the Color and Ipod Case Custom Image options.

delivery date product page

Input type

The Input type allows for a text or text area option. The difference between text and text area is that text is one line of blank text to be filled in, while text area gives more space for longer comments. For our iPod Classic we decided that we need an Engraved Name option to engrave the name of the customer on the iPod. We need the customer to type in their first and last name, so we chose the text type. We gave a sort order of 3 because we want the Engraved Name option to be above the Delivery Date.

engraved name

In the Options Tab under Products we decided that this option doesn't need to be required to check out. In the Option Value we filled in "First and Last Name" so the customer knows to enter their first and last name in the box.

engraved name product

When the option is saved to the product, we can see the Engrave Name section under Ipod Case Custom Image and above Delivery Date. The red asterick is missing because we chose "No" under "Required". The option value shows "First and Last Name" in the box, but the customer can type their own name in that area.

first and last name

Options displayed in the shopping cart

When the customer makes their selection and adds the product to their cart, the shopping cart will display the iPod Classic product options under the Product Name column. Every option selected will be included under the iPod Classic. When the customer checks out, this product information will be included.

ipoad classic shopping cart

The Option section adds another layer of flexibility in customizing product information on product pages. By becoming familiar with the Options tab, you will improve the ZeeStore transaction process for your customers.

 

Manufacturers in the administration interface

The Manufacturer section is used to categorize products by manufacturer. This section can be accessed under Catalog > Manufacturers.

The Manufacturer names below came with the install. They can be deleted, and new manufacturer information can be added in its place. The manufacturer information should be created before products are added, so the manufacturer category can be selected when adding the product. Saving a product without including the manufacturer isn't advised, because customers can search for products in the store front through their manufacturer page. With the manufacturer missing from the product information, the product will not be available on those pages.

look manufacturer

To insert a new manufacturer, the following information is required:

manufacture inset

To edit existing manufacturers you can locate "Edit" under "Action". Clicking edit will direct you to the form above with the previously filled-in manufacturer information.

The product will need to be reassigned to the newly changed manufacturer, if the manufacturer name is changed. If the manufacturer name remains unchanged, but any of the other information is edited, the product will automatically adopt the new manufacturer information.

Manufacturers in the store front

Manufacturers will always need to be assigned to products in the store inventory to affect the store front. See the Products section for more information on how to assign manufacturers to products in the administration. In the store front, the manufacturer "categories" serve to organize products under manufacturers. To illustrate how products are organized under manufacturers in the store front, we will create a new manufacturer and assign it to a product.

manufacture acer

In the Catalog > Manufacturer section we created an 'Acer' manufacturer; added it to our only store ('Default'), while including an SEO keyword, manufacturer image, and sort order. Under Products we assigned the "Acer" manufacturer to the "Acer Aspire" product.

The Manufacturers page

To access the Acer manufacturer page, the customer can go to the footer of any page; and under Extras they can click on Manufacturers.

extras brands

The customer will then be directed to the manufacturers page, where all the manufacturer names are displayed alphabetically. We can see that our "Acer" manufacturer was automatically added to this page upon creation.

brands page

When the customer clicks on the "Acer" link, they will be directed to a page listing all the products within this "Acer" manufacturer. On this page, we can see that the "Acer Aspire" product is displayed because it was assigned the manufacturer,"Acer", in the Products section.

acer brand page

Clicking on the "Acer Aspire" will take the customer to its product page.

acer inspire product page

The "Acer" manufacturer page can also be accessed from the product page, under "Manufacturer". This link is helpful for exposing customers to different products of the same manufacturer in the shop. The customer can click on "Acer" to be directed to the manufacturer page, where they can browse other Acer products in the store.

The carousel module

Adding a new manufacturer will not add the manufacturer icon to the carousel banner on the home page. The newly created manufacturer must be added to the manufacturer banner under System > Design > Banners for the icon to be displayed in the carousel. See the Layout section for more information on how to add the manufacturer icon to the banner.

Downloads

Adding new downloads

This section is only applicable to you if you sell digital products, or products that have a downloadable component such as a PDF User Guide or similar. To insert a new download, you must give the downloadable product a name, upload the file, and set an allowance for the number of downloads per customer. The mask option allows the administrator to give the file a different visible filename. Press "Save" to submit the download information and save it.

downlaod spring

With the download created, it must be manually added to the each individual product that the download will be included with. See Links to learn how to add a download to the product.

downloads product

The downloadable file will not be shown on the product page. Therefore, it is a good idea to describe how the customer will receive their download in the product description on the product page. The download will be provided for the customer once their purchase is complete. They should be advised to visit "My Account" > "My Orders" > "Downloads" (as seen below) to view their downloadable products. They will have the opportunity to download the file as many times as it was specified under "Total Downloads Allowed".

my account downloads

 

Reviews

Reviews

Product reviews can be both submitted and viewed by customers on the product page. A customer can fill out a review form and submit it to be approved for publication on the site.

In the Dashboard the administrator can view how many customer reviews are awaiting approval in the Overview section. To approve these reviews, the administrator may visit Catalog > Reviews, select the review, and click "edit". ZeeStore will display the author, product, and text review in separate text boxes. Selecting "enabled" under status will make the review publicly available on the product page.

look reviews

We can't recommend the editing of customer submitted reviews, even though there is a space to. The point of having reviews is to receive customer input on that specific product to help other customers make an informed decision with their purchase. If you would like to to disable reviews altogether, you can visit the Options tab under System > Settings. See Settings > Options > Products for more information..

The result of a customer review approval can be seen in the screenshot below. Every review is made publicly available on the product's main page after administrative approval. The average rating per product is tabulated by ZeeStore and shown out of 5 stars under 'Available Options'.

look reviews product page

 

 

 

Information Pages

Information

The Information section displays specific company information in the footer of every page (as seen in the screenshot below). See Information for more information on the footer page.

information1

The Information page can be found under Catalog > Information. On this page the administrator will have the option to edit, delete, or insert a new Information page.

About Us, Delivery Information, Privacy Policy, and Terms & Conditions are in the default because they are the most important Information pages used in online stores. We recommend that you edit these pages rather than delete them.

look info backend

When editing or inserting these pages a description may be added, pages enabled or disabled, and SEO keywords created. There is an option to remove the page from the bottom of the footer.

Information pages in the store front

In the screenshot below, the "Delivery Information" page is being edited in the administration under Catalog > Information. The Information Title will display the text entered as the title of that information page, while the description will be placed below.

The Data tab requires you to check the store that the Information page will be located in, if you have multiple stores. It also asks for a SEO keyword, a status option enabled (or disabled) to make the page public or not, and a sorting order.

delivery general

The screenshot below is the result of saving the edited Delivery Information. A customer can access this page from the footer of any page in the store front by clicking "Delivery Information". There is an option in the Data tab above to remove a link to this page from the footer.

 

 

 

Core Modules Overview

Core Modules Overview

There are many core modules provided with the latest version of ZeeStore:

All of these modules can be manipulated with the Layout, Position, Status, and Sort Order tools in Modules.

 

Install / Uninstall

Installing and uninstalling a Module

The default version of ZeeStore provides several core modules in the administration. In the Module section, some of these modules will be installed and uninstalled. We recommend that you take some time to experiment with different modules to discover which ones compliment your store the best. The first step in experimenting is installing the modules. Some modules may be uninstalled for the default, such as the Google Talk module. Installing a module is very simple. You can find the module, and in the same row click "Install" in the Module. If the module is installed, there will be an option to "Edit" or "Uninstall" where the "Install" used to be.

Uninstalling a module is as simple a process as installing one. Clicking "Uninstall" under the Action column is all that is necessary to remove the module information.

Uninstalling the module will delete the module information that was manually selected under "Edit". This module information cannot be recovered after it is uninstalled by re-installing it.

Editing a Module

Editing a Module

Modules can vary widely in purpose and function, so naturally, customizing a module to fit a particular store may vary between modules. In general, there are 4 main features of modules that can be tinkered with in the Module section:

Layout

The layout affects which pages the module will be included on. The pages available are listed in the screenshot below. If the module needs to be included on multiple pages, you must individually "Add Module" for each page. The Layout can only select one page at a time..

layout

The screenshot below shows the Featured module, which displays a list of specified products on the left side of a random Category page. This was achieved by selecting "Category" under Layout. The Featured Products box will be available on every Category page. Selecting a layout page type will add it to every page of that type. Core modules can be assigned to layout pages, but not individual pages.

featured layout

Position

The Position selection determines where the modules will be displayed on the page. On the page types selected in Layouts, the module box can be at the top, bottom, left, or right side of a page.

position

Using the same module from the Layout section, we will change the Featured box on the category page from the left column, to the top, by selecting "Content Top" under Position (below).

featured top

The Featured box with its specified products is listed above the category products in the category page, moved from its original position on the left side.

Status

Disabling or enabling the status of the module will affect the visibility of the module on the store website. Disabling a module is different from uninstalling the module. Disabling the module keeps all the module information available to be edited in the administration, while hiding it from the store front. Uninstalling the module will remove the store module information. Selecting "Enabled" will make this module publicly available on the pages selected for the store.

Status enable disable

Sort order

The sort order affects the order of a module in relation to other modules in the same position. A sorting order of 1 for a module would place it above another module placed in "Content Bottom" with a sorting order of 2. If two modules are in the same position and have the same sort order number, they will be arranged alphabetically according to the module name. A module named "Featured" would be placed above the Specials module

 

 

Shipping

Shipping

The shipping methods extensions can accessed under Extensions > Shipping. The core shipping methods seen below are included with the ZeeStore package.

shipping back end

The shipping methods need to be installed before they can be enabled or disabled for the store. To Install a shipping method, click "Install" under "Action". Once the shipping method is installed, you can edit the specifications of that shipping method, or uninstall it to remove the shipping method information.

Editing the shipping method

Each shipping method needs to be individually edited to meet your shop's shipping requirements and to specify the prices for that service. There are a few details that are present across all shipping methods:

Shipping methods in the store front

Editing shipping methods in the administration will affect the shipping methods available to customers in both the store front Shopping Cart and Checkout pages.

Shopping cart

The shopping cart has a special feature called "Estimate Shipping & Taxes" that will calculate a shipping payment for a customer's order. See Order totals to enable or disable this feature. When a customer enters their regional information, a popup window will ask the customer to select a shipping method. In this window, every shipping method that is enabled under Shipping Methods will be listed according to their sorting order. The store below enabled Free Shipping and Flat Shipping Rates as their two available shipping methods.

shipping estimation

After the customer applies the shipping, the shipping method and it's cost will be displayed under the Totals.

Checkout

In Step 4 of the Checkout, the customer will need to select a shipping method before finalizing their purchase. The Delivery Method will display every shipping method that was enabled in the administration. The store in the screenshot below enabled the Free Shipping and Flat rate shipping methods. The shipping methods were positioned according to their sorting order, with their prices included on the right side.

shipping delivery method

 

Payments

Core payment methods

The ZeeStore package offers a variety of payment methods, from bank transfers to online payment gateways. The following core payment methods are available with an ZeeStore installation:

Additional payment methods can be downloaded from the ZeeStore Extension Directory.

Editing a payment method

Editing payment methods in the administration for different transaction processors, like Paypal, will require a previously created account. The account and payment information should be obtained from these companies prior to editing the payment method in the administration. You will need to create an account with these companies to use their transaction processing for ZeeStore. The information required for each payment method will be displayed in the Edit section. Across payment methods, there are a few details that are consistently asked for:

Payment method in the checkout

Enabling a payment method in the administration will make it available in the Checkout. In Step 5 of the checkout, the customer will be given a radio type selection to select their preferred payment method.

Payment method in order history

After the customer has confirmed the order, they can visit their Order History in their Account page to view its status. Immediately after checkout, the status will display the default order status you selected when editing the payment method details. In the screenshot below, you may chose "Pending" as the order status.

payment method

The screenshot below shows "Pending" as the order status in the customer's Order History page under "My Account" in the store front.

payment method order history

 

Order Totals

Order Totals Extensions

You can manage the order total extensions used for orders under Extensions > Order Totals. These totals are extra fees that are added to the total sum of an order in the store's shopping cart. For more information on order totals, visit Orders. The order total extensions below are included with the ZeeStore package.

order totals ext

In the image above we can see that Coupon, Store Credit, Reward Points, Shipping, Sub-Total, Taxes, Total, and Gift Voucher extensions are enabled. These enabled order totals will be included in the checkout section. To disable any of these order total extensions, click "Edit". If you want to remove an extension, click "Uninstall".

Coupon

Coupons can be added to the order totals page by selecting "Enabled" under "Status". The sorting order affects the order that the extension is put in.

Store credit

Store credit can be added to an order with this extension. The status and sorting order can be selected for checkout.

Handling fee

To include a handling fee with orders, fill in the following information:

orders ext handling

Klarna fee

To add a Klarna fee include the following information:

Low order fee

To include a fee if the order amount is too low, include the following information:

Reward points

If you want an option to add reward points to order totals, enable under status and select a sorting orde.

Shipping

The shipping estimator will automatically estimate how much shipping will cost and add the fee to the order total.

ordes ext shipping

Sub-total

Select the status and sort order of the sub-totals in checkout.

Taxes

Select the status and sort order of the taxes in checkout.

Total

Select the status and sort order of the total amount of the order in checkout.

Gift-voucher

Select the status and the sort order of the gift-voucher option in checkout.

Order totals in the shopping cart

The screenshot below displays a basic shopping cart with some specific extensions enabled. Coupon, Gift Voucher, Shipping, Sub-total, and Total are enabled (as seen below).

shopping cart payment

 

 

Product Feeds

Product Feeds

The Product Feed extension lets you customize how you want the products of your ZeeStore store to be viewed and listed by search engines like Google. To utilize this feature, you must compile a product feed of your store's products. The store's product feed can be compiled using XML or manually entering product information into a spreadsheet program.

Google Base and Google Sitemap

The ZeeStore package lets you connect to two product feed tools, Google Base and Google Sitemap. You need to create an account at the Google Merchant Center to access these tools. Google Base requires the user to upload product information in product feeds so that they can show up in Google's search engine. The product feed created for Google Base needs to follow Google's specifications, which can be viewed in Google's support FAQ. Google Sitemap uses a data url from the store website to provide information to its search engine to crawl the store's website.

In the edit section of Product Feeds, you must link to the store's Data feed urls obtained from the Google Merchant center.

 

Orders

Managing orders

When a customer goes through checkout, the information on their order is automatically transferred to the Orders section for you to keep track of. In the administration, you can view all of the orders made on their site, manually add orders, or edit the details of existing orders.

Viewing order details

The Orders section is located under Sales > Orders. On this page, every order ever made from the store is listed in detail.

The following details are displayed for each order on the list:

orders

With the orders included in the list, there is an option to edit, insert, delete, search, or print an invoice of an order.

Searching for an order

The "Filter" button under Action helps you find orders based on the information specified in the blanks. It can help you locate orders by date added or customer. The "Filter" cannot search for orders by product purchased yet. For more information on the Filter tool, see Filter.

Manually adding/modifying an order

Customer Orders will be automatically updated to the Order section after a customer confirms checkout. Though it is automatically updated, you may want to edit or add orders manually to add new information such as a gift-voucher, or add reward points. To manually add a new order, click the "Insert" button. To modify a pre-existing order, click "Edit" under Action.

Customer details

The first section for modifying an order is called Customer Details. Typing in a customer name that has already made an account with the store will auto-complete the form by bringing up their information to fill in the blanks.

orders customer details

Payment details

If an address has been added to the customer, select their address option under "Choose Address". Otherwise the customer address will need to be manually filled into the form.

orders payment details

Shipping details

This section tracks the shipping address for this particular order. If the shipping and payment address are the same, copy and paste the information above when adding it manually.

Products

In "Choose Product", begin typing the product name. A drop down list will appear with products containing that name. Selecting a product from this list will bring up specific product options for this order.

orders products

Vouchers

If a customer wants to add a gift voucher order, it will ask them for the following information.

orders vouchers

Totals

Under Totals, other contributing payment factors, such as coupons and vouchers, are added/subtracted to the order total.

Shipping and payment methods must already be set up to select a method in the order form. Otherwise, there will be nothing to select under Shipping Method and Payment Method.

orders totals

The sections seen above (such as Coupon, Voucher, Rewards) are extensions that were enabled specifically for this form. There is an option to customize the order details included in the totals by editing, uninstalling, or enabling specific order total extensions.

Printing invoices

To print an invoice, go back to the Orders page under Sales > Orders. Above the order list on the top right corner is the "Print Invoice" button. Select the order to be printed, and click "Print Invoice". This action will direct you to a printable page of the invoice. The invoice can be printed out and included in with the shipping.

Returns

Adding a new return

The Return section under Sales > Returns lets you manage merchandise returns. You must manually enter the product and return information to create a new return. To insert a new return, click the "Insert" button in the right corner above the returns list.

Return details

Filling in the Returns Details tab is the first step in creating a new return. The following details are required to fill out a return:

orders return details

Products

The Products section fills out more information about the product that was returned, and why it was returned. You will need to manually type in the product that the customer returned. Typing in "Apple" will bring up all the apple products in the store. We selected the Apple Cinema 30" from the drop down, and the "Model" space was auto-completed for us. You may also include the quantity, the return reason, whether or not the product was opened, the customer's comments, the return action (credit issued, refunded, replacement sent), and return status (awaiting products, complete, pending). The return status names can be added in the return statuses section.

orders return products

Editing a return

Merchandise returns are automatically added to the Returns section when submitted by the customer. The Returns form is located in the store front on the Returns page, under Customer Service in the footer.

product returns

The information filled out in this form will be saved in Sales > Returns. The fields that the customer entered above will be included in the same fields when viewing the return in the administration. You can edit the status of the return to Awaiting Products, Pending, or Completed. When the status is updated in the administration, the customer will be able to view the status of their order under My Account > "View your return requests" in the store front.

Affiliates

Affiliate program

ZeeStore gives you the opportunity to set up an affiliate program to promote additional traffic to your shop. Affiliates will receive a commission for each time they direct traffic or sales to your site. The commission % can be adjusted in the administration under Sales > Affiliate.

Creating a new affiliate

To create a new affiliate, you may click the Insert button on the Affiliate page.

General tab

The first form asks for general information regarding the affiliate. This information can be obtained directly from the affiliate through email, or will be added automatically if they filled out a form on the Affiliate page:

affiliate general tab

Payment details tab

The Payment Details tab configures the commission and payment methods to be paid to the affiliate:

affiliate payment

Editing an affiliate

The Affiliate page can be accessed from Extras > Affiliates in the footer section of every page. The affiliate will need to create an affiliate account using this page. A form on the page includes the same fields seen in the General and Payment Details tabs in the admin side. When the affiliate completes the form, the affiliate information will be filled into the General and Payment tabs for you to edit. Clicking "Edit" under Sales > Affiliates will allow you to edit specific payment or general affiliate information.

Approving an affiliate

After the affiliate creates their account in the store front, the affiliate will need to be approved by the administrator in the Affiliates section of the administration.

Coupons

Coupons

You may create and designate coupons to specific products or product categories under Sales > Coupons. The Coupons page will display a list of all the coupons created in the administration.

coupon

General tab

Editing or inserting a coupon will lead the administrator to a form containing the following fields:

discount

From the information in the General Tab above, we can see that this coupon gives the customer a $10 discount to the Acer Aspire product.

Coupon history

The Coupon History tab list all the uses of this coupon in the store. The following information about each use will be displayed:

Coupons in the store front

Adding and editing coupons in the administration affect the use of coupons in the Shopping Cart and Checkout in the store front.

Shopping cart

To enable the use of Coupons in the store front, the coupon extension must be enabled by you under the Order Totals extension. For the customer to use the "-10.00 Discount" coupon, they must first add the product to their cart from the product page, then enter the code in the Shopping Cart. They can select "Use Coupon Code", enter the coupon code in the space provided, then add "Apply Coupon".

coupon acer

Applying the coupon will subtract the coupon discount from the original total. A newly discounted total will be shown under the Coupon(code) total in the order totals section.

coupon total

Checkout

The customer will see the coupon discount once more in the Confirm Order step in Checkout:

coupon confirm order

Gift Vouchers

Gift Vouchers

Gift vouchers can be individually sent to customers through their email by other customers in the store front. The customer receiving the gift certificate can use the code provided in the email at the shopping cart to deduct the gift voucher amount from the order total. To manage the Gift Vouchers of the store, go to Sales > Gift Vouchers > Gift Vouchers.

Gift Vouchers only have one use per customer. If the customer uses the same code for another order, ZeeStore will display the warning "Warning: Gift Voucher is either invalid or the balance has been used up!"

General tab

To create a new gift voucher, click "Insert". The following information will be needed:

gift voucher general

Voucher history tab

The voucher history tab displays the use of the gift voucher code in the checkout. The Order ID, Customer Name, Amount, and Date Added will be displayed.

Voucher themes

The Voucher Themes section alters the image displayed in the email according to the theme. In the store front, customers purchasing the voucher for a person can choose a theme for voucher.

voucher theme

Emailing a gift voucher to a customer

Once a gift voucher has been created, you are responsible for sending out the email to the customer receiving the gift voucher. After you make sure the customer's email information has been filled out in the General Tab, you can send the email by clicking "Send" under "Action". If the email was sent, ZeeStore will display the message: "Success: Gift Voucher e-mail has been sent!".

gift voucher send

The screenshot below is how the customer will view the Gift Voucher email in their email:

The Code, From Name, Message, Amount fields from the General Tab are included in the content of the email. The Birthday Theme selected above is shown in the email by the image on the right side.

Purchasing a gift voucher in the store front

Customers have the option to buy a gift voucher for their friends and family. They can purchase a gift certificate by accessing My Account > Gift Voucher from their account page, or through Extras > Gift Voucher in the footer section of any page.

purchase gift certificate

The information added in the fields above will be automatically stored in the administration, once a customer confirms the purchase of the gift voucher. The minimum and maximum amounts a voucher can be purchased for is controlled under the store's settings. See Settings for more information.

Mail

Emailing a customer group

The Mail system in ZeeStore lets you send emails to specific customer groups. You can use this feature to send newsletters, information on specials, or to communicate any type of store information to select groups of customers. Customer groups are especially useful in emailing specific groups of people instead of every customer stored in the administration. For more information on how to create a customer group, see Customer Groups. The Mail page can be accessed from Sales > Mail.

customers group email

Select the customer group in the "To:" field, create a subject for the email and a message, and click "Send". This email will be sent to all the customers with this specific customer group selection.

Backup/Restore

Backup and restore

One of the most devastating events that can happen to an online store is the loss of a database. The store database contains important customer and product information. It is difficult for a store to recover after losing a database, and certainly takes up too much time to re-enter this necessary information. You need to be vigilant with downloading updated backups of the store's database to their computer, just in case something happens.

ZeeStore lets you download a backup of the store's current database or restore the database to the administration in System>Backup/Restore. The Backup section seen below contains all the data tables in the MySQL database available for download. You can choose what files you want to download by checking on them. Clicking the "Backup" button will download the selected tables to your computer.

If you need to restore a backup file that you previously saved to your computer, all you need to do is click "Choose File" from Restore Backup, select the sql file from their computer, and the database will be restored.

backup restore backend