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Best approach in building online store?

Thread began 7/07/2010 2:07 am by victor405909 | Last modified 7/20/2010 2:07 pm by Eric Mittman | 1435 views | 7 replies |


Best approach in building online store?

Reason I ask this is because it can be confusing with tutorials all over the place on the site at times some are different to current extensions.

I have the Dynamic Suite, loaded ecommerce database from Webassist (i.e. wa_ecommerce_20091112.sql) into Mysql database, established successful connection to database via dynamic site defined in dreamweaver and used Security Assist to setup login features.

Aim is to create fully functional online store to sell products that are grouped into different categories.

Should I do things in this order:

1. create admin section to - load thumbnail, large images, price, short + long descriptions.

2. Use my custom detail page to insert corresponding recordsets (e.g. thumbnails binded with thumbnails column create in database)

To be honest unclear as to where i go from here.

I have a template for how I want categories to display I want to be able to click a category on my navigation and display those products and further selection should lead to detail page previously mentioned.

Could someone tell me:

What am I missing in this approach for it to be successful?

How would a simple search for products feature fit into such a approach in regards to results displayed from customer view point?


Set out a brief framework how they developed their online store with the Dynamic Suite from webassist?

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Jimmy Wu

It actually sounds like what you're trying to build is a lot like PowerStore, which you might want to take a look into. Its a pre-built solution that you would just install on your server and run through an installation wizard to get working.

From your starting point, I would recommend using the recordset on that page to insert different information into the add to cart button for eCart. You would want to put the add to cart button in the repeat region for the search results. To be honest, this is such an open ended question and there's no set best way to go about setting up the store. You could set up security assist so that you can store which order is for which user. Then you would also want to set up Universal email after setting up eCart to notify the user that the order has gone through and also to alert your store administrator that an order has been placed.

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Thanks for quick response.

I still am unclear I need a little more substance.

I appreciate there are many ways to achieve this I only need one that works.

I have dummy navigation (i.e. links that don't lead to anywhere yet) within my own template created from css.

Product details, including price within a Products table in database.

Category names which I have created in a categories table in database.

What steps do I need to take from here to successfully incorporate my specific design?

(To further clarify question I know data assist provides a details page but I want to use is my own layout . I'm sure I have to insert recordsets but do I allow wizard to run and save my own designed details page to replace one created by data assist and insert recordsets that way is that even a correct approach?)

What do I use to get categories that I created in database to show up as navigation links is this even a correct approach?

I think if I could get some guidance on this setup below maybe all my answers could be solved.

I have setup PHP Finish folder in dreamweaver

( which has Blue Sky site files used in conjunction with webassist extensions found in Security Assist-AuthUserSR-SupportFiles)

I have installed corresponding database and have a Mysql connection.

Is there a way to setup so there are no broken links and if so how do I achieve this?

(Reason I ask is fixing a link to image folder is relatively simple however a broken link to a php file does not appear to be that simple).

THANKS again!

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Jimmy Wu

Have you taken a look at the PowerStore solution pack that we offer? I feel that you would be more successful if you were to use that to start off with.

As far as your product details page goes, you would want to have a recordset to get the correct values from the database and add an add to cart button on the page being populated by that recordset.

I would recommend running through with DataAssist and then modifying the pages using the CSS style sheets that are generated for the pages.

You would use Menu Writer to create the menu navigation and set up dynamic links within the menu structure to set up the different menu categories.

What broken links do you see? Its relatively simple to fix broken links. Its possible that the file structure is causing the broken links since they are set up to be relative to the page.

Again, from the questions that you are posing and what it seems you are trying to develop, the PowerStore solution seems to fit your needs.

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Thanks for reply.

I have seen Powerstore however I wanted to build my applications from the ground up to gain more of an understanding of how it all works and for total customization so I bought the dynamic suite.

So far I have a link that goes to a category page.

The category page displays products via a repeat region with an add to cart button. Large and thumbnail images appear correctly. Add to cart works ,redirects to cart page .

When add to cart clicked it redirects to cart however thumbnail is missing what is missing?

On page that displays category products in repeat region how do I manually create a link so that images, title, price ( displayed recordsets) go to detailed page of selected product?

I notice you mentioned Menu Writer to create menu navigation does it take category ids from database and turn them into links? I have not seen this is it included in the dynamic suite?

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Eric Mittman

In regards to the missing thumbnail are you setting any of the columns to the name of the image? This is the trick for getting this to work, you would have the image name stored in the cart, then in the cart display you make sure that the source of the image is pointing to your images folder then you use the binding for the image name to have it show.

What you have described for your details page is called a master-detail page set. The idea is that you link to the details page with a unique identifier like the items id. Then on the details page you would have a recordset that is filtered on this unique value. You can then use the recordset bindings to show any of the details about this new item.

As for Menu Writer you can craft dynamic links to go the various pages for the different categories. You should take a look at the support page for Menu Writer. If you have only the dynamic suite you may not have this tool, check in your download center to confirm if it is available to you.

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Thanks for reply.

I think I get but have not sure what to put where in code to complete.

I have a link called dresses that goes to productCAT.php. I need to know how to add specific id so this is passed on to productCAT.php

productCAT.php has a recordset that filters info so only products with a unique productCategory is displayed in this example number 2 would display all dresses in db.
How do I get this page to read id sent?

I want image, title, price recordset to link to productDetail.php.

This page should then filter based on id received from productCAT.PHP (the detail master refered to). How do I create these dynamic links and how do I get this to read id from links?

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Eric Mittman

It sounds like you have two master details page sets that you would like to create. The first is for the category then again for the details of a particular item.

link to productCAT.php with id > link to detail page with product id > details page displays info about the product

The first thing to do is to create a recordset on the productCAT.php page that will select all from your table. Then you need to configure the filter, you will filter on the id column, and then specify the value coming form a URL parameter, then enter the name of your URL parameter that you are using in the links to this page. This is all there is to it, with the recordset being filtered on the id in the url parameter the page will only display info about that category of items.

The details page is the same type of thing. You need to first have a recordset that selects the records from your products table. Then you will need to specify a filter for this recordset as well. Like the previous one it will be filtered on a URL parameter. Just specify the id column, then enter the name of the URL parameter. On your category page you just need to link to the detail page with this parameter and the id in it like this:

details.php?id=<your item id>

When you are crafting the links you can add in the ?id= part then for the value use the binding from the recordset for the id. If you have any further questions about this let us know, it might be best to work on a specific aspect of this first before moving onto the other parts.

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