Table contents

Understanding the Preferences

The Preferences tab lets you configure and fine-tune some of your store's details. These include a lot of different aspects of the shop, from technical settings to the customer's shopping experience. Therefore, all of the Preference options should be carefully examined, and you should consider each option, as enabling or disabling any of them can have a real impact on your shop, and ultimately, your sales.

The Preferences tab lets you configure and fine-tune some of your store's details. We will now look over all of the functions in this section.


Clicking on the "Preferences" tab will take you directly to your store's general settings.


You can personalize your shop's appearance with the “Appearance” tab. Note that it is actually a redirect to the "Themes" sub-tab of the "Modules" tab.

The first section enables you to customize the theme's various logos and icons, and the breadcrumb separator (or "navigation pipe")

Click “Browse” to load an image from your computer.

A favicon is a small image that appears in the address bar of your browser and helps your customers find your store more easily amongst their list of favorites.

The navigation pipe is what PrestaShop uses to separate breadcrumb items, for instance "Music players > iPods > iPod Nano".

The second section displays all the themes available on your server.

Select the theme that will be active on your shop by clicking the radio button, then confirm by clicking "Save."

The third and final section gives you a quick overview of the latest themes submitted to the PrestaShop Addons theme repository

You can easily customize your shop with the various available themes. You can find them directly at:


You can change your store's database settings if you need to change your database server, or if you change the configuration access to your database. However, before making any changes, be careful and do all the necessary checks, or ask your host. These changes are required only if you changed your database settings at your server level.

At the bottom of the page is the "MySQL Engine" section, which is a long list of all of PrestaShop's table, and their MySQL engine.

You can change the engine by ticking the appropriate tables, choosing the engine in the drop-down menu, and clicking "Submit".

You can learn more about the various MySQL engines (including some not available to you) on the MySQL website.


At the end of the checkout process, a client can leave a message. He can choose to whom to send it by selecting from the drop-down menu.

Under the "Email" sub-tab of the "Preferences" tab, you can configure PrestaShop to send emails to your customers. However, we advise that you consult your web host to determine which settings to use for this feature.

Your shop sends many messages throughout all the steps of registration and placing an order. Here, you can configure how these messages will be sent. By default, it is advisable to use the first option of sending information to "Use the PHP mail() function”.

In the event that this does not work, then use the second option. In this case, additional fields appear.

Once you have configured emails using one of the two methods, enter your email address in the field labeled "Test your email configuration" then click "Send an email test".

Now check the inbox of the address provided to verify that you received the test mail. If you have not received it, please modify your configuration. The configuration information can be provided to you either by:

Your web host can tell you whether or not your username is mandatory, as well as the password information, and the encryption to use.

For example, in the case of Gmail (the e-mail service offered by Google), enter the following information:


In the "Products" sub-tab of the "Preferences" tab, you can choose to have a zoom appear when the cursor hovers over a product's image. The "Image" sub-tab enables you to configure the various sizes.

Add a New Images Size

You can easily add a new image size, and even set to which categories it applies.

Regenerate Images

You may be dissatisfied with your shop's current thumbnails size. You can regenerate them using the "Regenerate" section at the bottom of the "Image" sub-tab page.

Select which category's images should be regenerated, indicate whether the previous thumbnails should be kept or not, then click "Regenerate Images".

Move image

PrestaShop has two image storage systems: the legacy one, which is efficient and has proven its worth over many versions of PrestaShop, and an improved one, which offers even better performance. You can keep relying on the old one, but you might want to use the new one, in which case you will need to trigger a one-time moving process of all the images.

The process is really simple: just click on the "Move images" button, and PrestaShop will take care of everything. Once the process is completed, do not forget to change the "Use the legacy image filesystem" option, and set it to "No".

PrestaShop stores its images in the /img folder, which contains several sub-folders :

  • /admin - your administration's images
  • /c - your categories' images
  • /cms - your CMS page's images
  • /co - your attributes textural colors
  • /genders - your gender and social title images
  • /jquery-ui - images used by jsquery-ui
  • /l - language images
  • /m - your manufacturers' logos
  • /os - order state images
  • /p - your products pictures
  • /s - your shipping pictures
  • /scenes - your categories' image-maps
  • /st - your physical stores' photos
  • /su - your suppliers' logos
  • /t - old tab images
  • /tmp - temporary files

You cannot change these folders manually. The available space depends on that of your server.


This sub-tab combines many tools and tips that might help you improve your shop's performance (server-wise, not sales-wise).


Smarty is the name of the template language used by PrestaShop's themes.

PrestaShop features a Smarty debug console, which gives you valuable information on a template page. Read more about it at Note that the console opens in a pop-up window: make sure to make your browser allow them for your shop's domain name.

You can activate it by adding a URL parameter: add ?SMARTY_DEBUG at the end of any URL in order to display it
Because this console might display private information, make sure to only enable it when in maintenance mode. Do not keep it enable on a production store.

To make sure it cannot be accessed in production mode, open /config/, then:

// replace this:
$smarty->debugging_ctrl = 'URL'; // 'NONE' on production
// with this:
$smarty->debugging_ctrl = 'NONE'; // 'NONE' on production

Combine, Compress and Cache (CCC)

CCC is a set of tools aimed at minimizing server load and theme loading time.

Media servers

Enable you to redirect part of your traffic (media files, for instance) to other servers under your control, through other domains or sub-domains.


Cyphering means to encrypt data so as to render it unreadable to unwanted eyes. Your costumers' account details, as well your own, are protected by cyphering. Here you can choose the algorithm you prefer:

Therefore, choose wisely.


Your server's cache stores static versions of your dynamic webpage, in order to serve these to your customers and thus reduce server load and compiling time.

This section enables you to choose to enable caching, and choose the caching method:



SEO means Search Engine Optimization. It represents a set of techniques aimed at improving the visibility of a website on search engines. This section helps you improve the presence of your PrestaShop store on web searches, and therefore reach more potential customers.

URLs are Uniform Resource Locators, or simply put, the online address of a web page. By default, they are rather uninformative to both the customer and search engines: an URL such as doesn't help you know what product is on that page. Friendly URLs are the way to achieve that, and get for instance

A product's friendly URL is set on its own configuration, as explained on the "Adding Products and Product Categories" chapter, in the "Listing Your Product" section. The "Create a Category" section also mentions how to create friendly URLs for product categories.

There are some individual "static" pages (or "CMS pages") in your PrestaShop install that would certainly benefit from friendly URLs. This tab presents you with a list of these CMS pages, and enables you to edit their friendly URLs.

WARNING: Friendly URLs only work with a server setup that supports URL rewriting. Make sure to check that yours does (ask your hosting provider!), as it can make your shop completely unavailable to customers if you enable friendly URLs and the server does not support it!

Adding a New Friendly URL

Click the "Add New" link to reach this form:

This form presents you with a handful of fields:

URLs Setup

At the bottom of the "SEO & URLs" tab is the following form.

Here you can view and edit some of the default server settings. Most of the time, you shouldn't touch the first four fields (PS directory, Homepage file, Homepage file, Shop domain name for SSL) with knowing exactly what you are doing. One mistake could break your shop.

Change the "Friendly URL" radio buttons settings if you know that your server can support URL rewriting. If not, leave it at "No". Likewise, only change the "Automatically redirect to Canonical url" radio buttons settings if you know what you are doing. Canonical URLs are excellent ways to improve SEO, as they help avoid duplicate content on your shop (more than one URL for the same actual content).*

After you have enabled Friendly URLs, you MUST generate a new .htaccess file: go to the "Tools" tab, "Generators" sub-tab, check the "Friendly URL" box, and then click the "Generate .htaccess file" button. This will create a new .htaccess file at the root of the PrestaShop folder.

If you already have a .htaccess file with your own settings, do not forget to copy/paste them in the generator's "Specific configuration" field.


The "Search" sub-tab enables you to configure your shop's search function.

The "Indexation" section provides information on the number of products that can be searched through your shop's search function, and compares it to the number of products present in the database. If the value does not match the number of products you have in your store, you must select the option "Add missing products to the index."

The following section enables you to configure the behavior of your shop's search function.

Product Name Weight

PrestaShop enables you to prioritize certain data when a search is performed on your shop.

Here is how: the keyword search term "player" is associated with the product "iPod shuffle" in the test store, and is also the name of an example product that we created, called "Walkman example".

You have many more factors that you can assign a weight to: short description, category, tags, attributes, etc. You will find that the display order of results is reversed because we changed the weight of the various fields. Fine-tuning these settings will be more visible on a large catalog with many references.

Once your changes have been made, click on "Save" for them to take effect immediately.

Keyword typos

When customers make a request using your shop's internal search engine, they may make mistakes in spelling. If PrestaShop does not display the right results, the "Alias" feature can address them. You'll be able to take words containing spelling errors, and point them to the real products sought by customers.

First, to find spelling errors often typed by your users, go to the "Shop search" section under the "Stats" tab. You can see the words typed by your customers as well as the most frequent errors. Take the most frequent ones, and add them to your list of aliases, in order to point user to the correct product.

To create a new alias, click on “Add New”. A form will appear.

For instance, let's say your visitor frequently "player" as "palyer" and "plaier". You can create an alias for each of these typos, which will match the word "Player". Once all of your aliases are configured, click "Save" to confirm.

We also invite you to consult the section on meta tags, to better understand how to display products based on words typed by your customers. See the "Adding Products and Product Categories" and "A Look inside the Catalog" chapters.


This sub-tab enables you to set the units used for your products.

In addition to that, PrestaShop provides you with an extensive list of existing unit localization packs.

Choose your shop's country, check the box that apply, and whole lot of local data will be imported for you.

Finally, you can indicate your shop's language, using the adequate ISO 639 code for the language, and the adequate ISO 3166 code for the country.


Geolocation is "the identification of the real-world geographic location of an object, such as a radar, a mobile phone or an Internet-connected computer". In our case, geolocation is used to discover the location of a visitor, using his computer's IP and other tools. One of the uses of geolocation is to block visitors from certain cities/countries.

As indicated the first time you open the "Geolocation" sub-tab, in order to use geolocation, you need download this file and decompress it into the /tools/geoip/ directory. This file is the GeoLite City database from MaxMind, an accurate database of cities locations.

Once the file is in place and geolocation is enabled, you can choose which countries can access your shop (all of them, by default), and set PrestaShop's behavior for restricted and undefined countries:

Click the "Save" button, at the bottom of the form, to confirm your choices.

At the bottom of the "Geolocation" sub-tab is the "Whitelist of IP address" section. It enables you to block specific IPs rather than blocking whole countries. It can be useful in case of spammers, bots or attacks. It is already filled with a list of known bad IPs. Add as many as needed, one per line, and click "Save".


This sub-tab contains a slew of preferences pertaining to how your products are to be handled and displayed by PrestaShop.

Contact information

This preference page gives you access to your shop's identification details.

Do not use a colon in your store's name, as it might prevent some feature from working (for instance, e-mail sending might fail.

You can replace the colon with a dash if you need to have two section in the title. For instance, use "MyStore – The best place for items to buy" instead of "MyStore: The best place for items to buy".