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Lesson 1 – Part 3 The Sales Component of our E-Commerce Website

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This video is part of our old WP eStore Course Go to our Updated WP eStore Course for current videos.

In the third part of this lesson we’re going to take an in depth detailed look at the Sales component that we’ll be creating on this Thesis themed e-commerce website. The first thing we’ll be doing in the Sales component is taking a look at the Product section. The Product is defined by a variety of different elements. The first part of the element is of course the Product’s name or Title, then you have the Product Description, and this is the large description of the product. Then you have the Excerpt which is the short summary description of the product. We have the Price of the product. In this case we’re talking about an ebook as an example. So for the ebook we’ll have an Author, a publish date, a large Image of the book,  a Thumbnail and a small image of the book. We’ll have book Reviews by customers and we’ll have Variations of the product.

Variations in the Product

For example, the variations we have in our e-books are English and French so you can pick a different language. And when we pick that different language some of those different languages have additional fees associated with them so that the variations can be more expensive or less expensive depending upon which is chosen.

Presentations of the Products

The second part of the Sales component of our Thesis e-commerce website is the presentation of the products. For example, you can see here on the e-commerce site that if we go back to the Home page the first thing we have is this featured product. Now we have a little slider here that we’re going to use to display the featured product and the various featured products will show up as they slide through here. So the featured product view will have the summary product view where you can see the book name, a description of the product, its Price, a Language selection and an Add to Cart so you can just purchase it immediately.

Then we have the detailed view and the detailed view gives all of the information, not just the summary information but all of the information that we’re collecting about the site. It does include these various options. You can either add it to cart or use the Buy Now option and then it has all of this written description about the product itself. This is the detailed view of the sales component in our Thesis e-commerce website.

Use of Pages and Posts within WordPress for Product Information

If you’ve been watching closely you will have noticed perhaps that there’s been an interesting shift in the URLs here as we’ve been looking and that’s because we’ve been using both Pages and Posts for displaying product information on our Thesis e-commerce website. As you are no doubt aware WordPress currently has two main divisions of data. It has Pages which are generally considered to be static and it has Posts which are generally considered to be dynamic. What we have is Pages and Posts together. Our Pages are our Catalog and our Product type page. For example, if you select the Catalog, here’s our catalog, and this is a page and then if you select one of these it takes us over to our product type, our Catalog page. So all of our software elements are grouped together just as all of our ebooks are grouped together and this is also a page showing all of the products that are inside of this product type or this category.

Then we have the Posts, and the Posts are really where all of the detailed information about the products in our Thesis e-commerce website are stored. In particular there is the Product Detail that you see as well as Product Meta information and this information is used to produce the teasers. Then you have the Teasers. They are created from the Product Detail and the Product Meta Information and those Teasers become the summary information of the products that are displayed over here on our Product type pages as part of our sales component in our e-c0mmerce website.

Meta Information within the Product Post

Again we can take a look at that e-commerce website. Let’s open up our Dashboard and come on down and take a look at our product Posts. Scroll down here to this example Banana Lust Ebook and select Edit and not only do we have our detailed information but we also have our Post Image or the large image, and we have the small image or the Thumbnail Image. We have the Excerpt which is the summary information and then we have these Custom Fields where we have put our Author, the number of Pages, the Price, the Product_ID, the Publication_date and then Shipping information and that sort of thing. This is our Meta information. It gets translated both into our teasers and also into our display page.

Data Entry for Products in WordPress E-commerce Plugin and in Posts

The next thing we have is our method of data entry and so we have our Product and we have all these pieces of that Product and we have sort of a mixed data entry process because we will enter the Title, the Excerpt, the Price and the Thumbnail Image both in our WordPress e-commerce catalog plugin system and also in the post, the WordPress post that we’re using. Then we will do our Description, our Author, our Publish Date, our Image and our Reviews and those will all go exclusively inside the WordPress post framework. Then we have the Variations which will be exclusively inside of the WP E-Commerce plugin. So we have all of these pieces of that data entry that we’re going to have to manage and walk through in our e-commerce website.  This is all part of the sales component.

Shopping Cart for the E-commerce Website

Finally we have our shopping cart which is important for our sales component. The shopping cart really has two functions. It has this “Buy Now” function – if you select that “Buy Now” piece it’s going to take us directly to PayPal for an opportunity to purchase it. And instead of that if you want to add it to your cart, you can add it to your cart and it will show up as a shopping cart here and you can in fact decide you want to purchase two of them. So now we bought two of them. We can say pick up one of these ebooks and add that one to the cart and so now you have all of these things accumulating with shipping calculated and the subtotal and the total and the person can decide to go ahead and check out now and now it takes you back to the PayPal site where you can buy all three of the items.

And that wraps up Part 3 of Lesson 1 of the Build Your Own E-Commerce Website tutorial series.

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