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Drupal Commerce - The Product vs Display Conundrum and How to Explain it to a Customer

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Drupal Commerce - The Product vs Display Conundrum and How to Explain it to a Customer

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A key concept in Drupal Commerce is the Product Display vs Product model used to separate physical products from their display on the website.

Depending on your point of view, this makes perfect sense or is a conceptual or practical nightmare. However you feel about it, understanding the reasoning behind the concept is essential when it comes to planning and implementing a Drupal Commerce project.

http://nyccamp.org/sessions/drupal-commerce-product-vs-display-conundrum-and-how-explain-it-customer

A key concept in Drupal Commerce is the Product Display vs Product model used to separate physical products from their display on the website.

Depending on your point of view, this makes perfect sense or is a conceptual or practical nightmare. However you feel about it, understanding the reasoning behind the concept is essential when it comes to planning and implementing a Drupal Commerce project.

http://nyccamp.org/sessions/drupal-commerce-product-vs-display-conundrum-and-how-explain-it-customer

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Drupal Commerce - The Product vs Display Conundrum and How to Explain it to a Customer

  1. 1. DRUPAL COMMERCE THE PRODUCT VS DISPLAY CONUNDRUM (AND HOW TO EXPLAIN IT TO A CUSTOMER) Richard Jones, Technical Director, i-KOS NYC Camp July 2012
  2. 2. HELLO! • Richard Jones • CTO i-KOS • London-based Drupal agency specialising in Commerce • @richardjones
  3. 3. QUICK INTRODUCTION TO DRUPAL COMMERCE • Built for Drupal 7 • "Small-core" philosophy • 1.0 launch at DrupalCon London 2011
  4. 4. A COMMERCE FRAMEWORK More than just a shopping cart
  5. 5. BASIC FEATURES • Shopping cart • Checkout • Customer profiles • Multiple product types • Rules based pricing • Payment API • VAT and tax
  6. 6. 0 5,000 10,000 15,000 20,000 May 2011 Jun 2011 Jul 2011 Aug 2011 Sep 2011 Oct 2011 Nov 2011 Dec 2011 Jan 2012 Feb 2012 Drupal Commerce Reported Installs Mar 2012 Apr 2012 May 2012 June 2012 July 2012
  7. 7. WITH GREAT POWER COMES GREAT POTENTIAL FOR CONFUSION
  8. 8. SO WHAT'S THE PROBLEM? • Drupal Commerce has product entities and product display nodes • Probably the single most important concept to get your head around • Either really obvious or really confusing
  9. 9. WHY IS IT THIS WAY? • Products often have multiple variations • Size, colour etc • You need to know which one of the variations the customer wants • Youneed don't want to display multiples of similar things
  10. 10. THE UPSIDES • Single product display can represent multiple products • Fine control of variables for each variant • Stock and pricing • Alternativedisplays for different contexts
  11. 11. THE DOWNSIDES • Ifyour products are simple you have to create 2 objects to create 1 product • Ifyour products are complex you could end up with thousands of variants • Admin user experience
  12. 12. ELIMINATE THE DOWNSIDES • Two main problems to solve • Duplication of effort when it seems a waste of time • Manual creation of hundred of variations
  13. 13. PLANNING YOUR PRODUCT STRUCTURE • Consider when the product display is used and when the product is used • Anythingproduct variant specific goes in the product (eg colour, image) • Anythinggeneric about the product goes in the display (eg marketing description)
  14. 14. PLANNING YOUR PRODUCT STRUCTURE • Anything you need in the following scenarios should go in the product • Confirmation email • Order tracking
  15. 15. EXAMPLE STRUCTURE
  16. 16. PLANNING YOUR PRODUCT STRUCTURE • Canalso have multiple product types • Where products have different descriptive elements • Or you need separation for logic
  17. 17. PLACING YOUR TAXONOMY • Ifyou need to have search or navigation based on taxonomy apply the taxonomy to the product displays • You could have alternate taxonomy for admin
  18. 18. ENOUGH PLANNING... Let's see the implementation
  19. 19. BULK PRODUCT CREATION • With the product display system number of variants can multiply quickly •A product with 5 sizes, 3 colours and 2 fits gives you 30 products for 1 product display • Bulk product creation set them all up • Then delete the ones you don't need
  20. 20. IMPROVING THE OWNER EXPERIENCE •A store admin doesn't want to hear that they have to do something twice no matter how well you explain it • Use inline edit module
  21. 21. EXPLAINING AND TRAINING • Getting this message across is the key to acceptance of commerce
  22. 22. TERMINOLOGY • Findthe terminology that fits with the client product range • Consensus seems to be • Product display = Product • Product entity = Variant
  23. 23. ANOTHER SIMPLE RULE • Products(variants) are for the back end • Productdisplays are for the front end
  24. 24. PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER Some scenarios
  25. 25. WAYS TO USE MULTIPLE DISPLAYS • Youcan group products together in any way you like • Different product displays for different contexts • Promotionallanding pages are a good example
  26. 26. LANDING PAGES • Use an alternative product display for promotional landing pages • Youcan change layout in other ways (display suite) • Best use of alternative product display when you want to group different products
  27. 27. SALES AND PROMOS • Alternative product display scenario • Normal display shows all products (variants) • Sale version shows only a subset
  28. 28. MULTIPLE PRODUCT TYPES • Products (variants) have different data requirements • Also different rules • Egbooks - need a way to identify different VAT condition
  29. 29. RULES BASED PRICING • Sales and promos • Usealternative product types for promo price rules
  30. 30. SUMMING UP
  31. 31. DRUPAL COMMERCE IS A FRAMEWORK • Just like Drupal there is a great deal of power under the hood • Just like Drupal some UX work will help!
  32. 32. QUESTIONS? Richard Jones, Technical Director, i-KOS NYC Camp July 2012

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