A quick start guide to Magento
So you have just purchased your new managed service Magento e-commerce package from the good folks at Dx3Webs and are wondering where to start?
Most of the hundreds of tweaks needed to get started with Magento will already have been done by us as part of the setup. All you need to do is to get your head around adding products and categories.
As part of the setup we will probably have setup a category structure for you to follow so we will start by looking at products.
How to add a new Product.
Log onto the back end as your host has told you.
Once logged in select “Manage Products” from the Catalog menu as show in Figure 1.
You will then see a list of existing products as show in Figure 2.
Click on the Add product button (Figure 3)
You will now be faced with the Crete Product Setting. This allows you to select from different types of Products that you can create. Unless your host has created a specific product type select the defaults and press Continue. (Figure 4)
The create product screen is composed of a number of tabs down the left-hand side which navigate through the various options available. All the compulsory items are marked with an asterisk. (Figure 5)
Should you miss any item that need filling in you will be prompted when you try to save your product. The following explains some of the items you will need to complete.
- Name This is the title that your product will have whenever it appears in your shop and will show up in searches so make sure that it is relevant and descriptive.
- SKU This is a unique code which will identify your product. It is useful to group similar products with similar SKUs as this is a quick way of finding your products in back in searches.
- Weight This is for postage calculations. If the postage costs of your items are not dependent on weight either enter a meaningless number or ask us to disable this as a required field.
- Status Set this to enabled to allow your product to show in your shop. You can disable this at a later date if you no longer sell this product and all reference to it will be removed from your customers.
- Tax Class Set this to none or default in less we have told you otherwise.
- Visibility Leave this set to Catalog, Search unless you have specific reasons.
- Meta Title / Keywords / Description These optional fields allow you to explain to search engines what they would find on the page. While not as important as they once were it may well be worth populating these fields. The title will control what appears at the top of the page in your customers browser and is generally believed to have an impact on different search engines. Ensure you place the name of the item here as well as any supporting key words. eg “Big Hammer, bargain tool by my company”
- Images you can load as many images as you like in to magento. To do so Browse Files and select all the files you want and select Upload files. Identify which is your main image and place the radio buttons for the 3 options as show in Figure 6
- Description / Short Description Place the full product description in one and a teaser in the other. How this appears in your listing is dependent on your Layout. Make sure your description contains as many relevant key words as possible to ensure search engines can contextualise your page content.
- Qty Enter the number of products you have for sale. If you are selling products by other means (bricks and mortar or ebay) you will need to ensure that you have tight inventory management in place or you run the risk of selling goods you don’t have.
- Stock Availability. This item can be a bit of a Gotcha as even if you have a positive inventory if this is set to Out of Stock you shop will not allow anyone to purchase this item.
- Categories Select the categories / sub-categories you wish this product to be associated with. You can tick as many boxes as you like. If you wish to make use of Layered Navigation tick the category and the sub-category.
- Related Products, Up-sells and Cross-sells. Tick the products you wish to add to these promotion tools. The following table explains the difference.
When you have completed all the required fields click Save. Your 1st item will now be shown in the list of products.
Duplicate existing products.
A powerful way to quickly add products to your catalogue is to replicate a similar product. Click on an existing product (Catalog > Manage Products) and select the Duplicate Button.
A new product will be created. Check through the tabs to ensure that all as you wish. Give it a new name and SKU to reflect your new product and carefully check the inventory details (the product will be marked Out of Stock regardless of what the original product settings were.) Also, you will need to check the image tab as the image setting do not carry over to the duplicate product.