Table of content

Adding Products and Product Categories

The foundation of a PrestaShop site is its catalog, which contains products and product categories. Building and improving your catalog is the main way you will make your website live in the eyes of the customer. This is where your shop becomes a reality, creating content, and thus giving value to your online shop.

As the heart of your shop, your catalog deserves a great deal of your attention. Adding products does not only mean adding an image and some text, and then validating your content. It means knowing your product by heart: price, weight, size, features, specifications, details, manufacturer, supplier and so much more. You should not start adding products to your Catalog without knowing exactly what you want to present to the customer, and thus need to have a set plan about your products and the way they will be displayed. This also means knowing your shop's front-office like the back of your hand in order to properly fill in the required fields.

The "Catalog" section can be accessed by opening the menu with the same name, which lists all the product-related pages. This is where you manage your catalog throughout your PrestaShop site.

The pages of this menu are sorted by order of their importance in the daily management of your shop: indeed, you are more likely to add/edit/deleted products than adding suppliers or image-maps.

When adding your first product, you should first start with a clear plan:

  • Which category does it fit in? You should define beforehand your whole store hierarchy, with categories and sub-categories clearly set.
  • Who is its manufacturer? If you make it yourself, create your own manufacturer.
  • Who is your supplier for this product? If you make it yourself, create your own supplier.
  • Do you have the description, features, images and other details available? The more your customer know, they quicker they'll be able to make a decision.

You can start adding products with minimal information and edit them at will, but before launching your shop, you should at least have this information written down.

Creating a Category

Products are always grouped into categories. This helps customers find their way through the variety of your products, and narrow down their search when looking for a specific type of product.

When creating a product category, you should focus on one thing: the products of this category must be comparable. This is not only useful for your customers, but it is also a necessity for PrestaShop's product comparison feature.

All the categories you will create are in fact sub-categories of "Home", the root category, which cannot be deleted.

You may choose to not create any category, and have all products grouped into a single global category, "Home". But then customers won't be able to compare products.

Categories are managed in the "Categories" page of the "Catalog" menu.

To create a category, click on the "Add new" button and fill out the form.

Make sure to fill each field in every language that your shop supports. In order to do that, click on the little flag next to the field, choose the flag of the language in which you wish to edit the text.

First of all, you must enter a set of general options:

Then, the form presents you with a few Search Engine Optimization (SEO) fields. This information will help you optimize the visibility of your catalog on search engines.

Finally:

Once you have finished configuring your category, you must save it.

Managing and Adding Products in the Catalog

You can manage the products in your shop using the "Products" page, in the "Catalog" menu. You can see the existing products and few details, and add new products by clicking on "Add new". A form will appear, with several tabs in the left column.

In the following sections, we will explore these tabs one by one. We begin with the first tab in the form, which enables you to fill out the general information about your products.

Filling out the product global information

The first tab contains the essential information about the product.

The first line is an essential one: indicate whether the product is a pack (a combination of at least two existing products), a virtual product (downloadable file, service...), or simply a classic, mail-sent product. For now, we will only explore the first option of these three, and deal with packs and virtual products in their own sections of this chapter.

You begin with four text fields:

On the right side are four options:

PrestaShop 1.4 enabled you to indicate the product manufacturer right on this page. In version 1.5, this setting has been moved in the "Associations" tab.

You can add information to better manage your item listing in the "Reference", "Supplier reference", "EAN13 or JAN", "UPC" or "Location" fields.

You can also indicate the size of the final package.

Finally, add the weight in order to properly calculate the shipping cost of your customer's orders

Creating a Pack of Products

You may wish to sell a pack of products composed of several items. I.e.: a computer start-up pack composed of the computer itself, a monitor, and a printer.

You can create a pack and add other products from your catalog to this pack. To do this, check "Pack". A simple form will appear, with a button. Start typing in the text field to filter through your existing products, and choose a product to add to the pack. Select it, choose the quantity, and click on the green button to validate your choice.

You can add as many products as you would like to the pack.

You can remove a product from the pack simply by clicking the trashcan icon next to it.

Packs allow the site administrator to simplify preparing orders. They also allow customers to take advantage of special prices and offers.

Creating a Downloadable Product

Check the box "Is this a downloadable product?" if you sell downloadable goods, such as mp3s or PDF documents. A form will appear:

Setting the Price of a Product

The pricing section can be quite intimidating, with fields influencing each other and taxes to take into account.

Set the price that will appear in your store by following the instructions below:

The final retail price, including the discount taken, will update as you type.

Note: You can fill out the "retail price with tax" field and choose the tax rate to apply, and the field will automatically calculate the pre-tax retail price. The opposite operation is also available.

Product Availability

This section enables you to manage the availability of your products.

You can also configure the general settings applied to all of your products. The default option is to deny orders, but this can be modified under the "Preferences" or "Products" tabs, discussed further in the "Product Configuration" section.

Default Category and Catalog Display

The default category will be used when an article is filed under several categories.

This serves mainly to clarify which category to use in case your customer arrives at your site from a search engine. The name of the category will appear in the product's URL. For instance, "telephone" can feature sub-categories of "brand" (Apple, Samsung, Nokia, etc.) and as well as "characteristics" (smart-phone, flip-phone, etc.).

Checking the "Home" box enables you to highlight the product on your shop's homepage, provided your theme supports it. To remove a product from the Featured list, simply uncheck the "Home" box.

Listing Your Product

To improve your product listing as well as increase your store's visibility we suggest that you carefully fill out the various SEO fields: meta titles, meta descriptions, and keywords and friendly URLs.

To access this information click on the sentence below:

The following fields are shown:

These fields allow you to directly optimize your catalog's visibility on search engines

Adding a Product Description

Describing your product well is essential, both for the customer (the more information, the better) and search engines (it will help your shop appear in more search requests).

These two fields are here to fill out your product’s description.
The first field enables you to write a short description that will appear in search engines and in the category description for your product. This field is limited to 400 characters, and can only be written in plain text.
In the second field, you can write a full description of your product, which will appear directly on the product page. The text editor offers a wide range of options for creating visually attractive descriptions (font, size, text color, etc.).
While the second form has no limits, there is such thing as too much content: provide the essential information in a compelling way, and your product should be good to go.

In the "tags" field, add some terms and keywords that will help your customers easily find what they are looking for.

The "accessories" field gives you the option of choosing relevant products to associate with this product. To suggest a product to your customers, type in the first letters of the product in question, select it, and then click on the green button to the right of the field.

Once you have filled out all this information save your work by clicking on "Save," after which you will be sent to your catalog's home page or by clicking on "Save and Stay" to continue working on your product's presentation When you have saved your work with "save and stay", some new options will be displayed in the following tabs: "Combinations", "Features", "Customization", "Discounts", "Attachments."

Configuring the Product Image

The second tab, "2. Images", is for including photos on your product page.

Once you have uploaded several images, you can choose to modify the image order by clicking on the arrows in the "position" column and define a different cover image by clicking on the icons under the "cover image" column.

Configuring Product Attributes

You can add multiple attributes to your products. An attribute is a product variation. For example, the same product can have multiple different color or size options. In PrestaShop, these are known as "Attributes."

To access this feature you must click on the "Attributes and Groups" tab under "Catalog".

Managing attributes and varieties

To add a group of attributes, or in other words to add a group of variation possibilities (colors, capacity, material, etc.), click on "Add attributes group", fill out the form that appears, and save.

To add a choice to the group of attributes that you just created, you must create a specific variation.
Select the attribute group then click on "Add attribute" and fill out the form that appears.

Fill out the value for your variation, then select the appropriate group from the drop-down menu.

To have a better understanding of this notion, an Attributes Group can be Color or Weight whereas the attributes themselves can be the colors green, yellow, or brown, or weights of 4 pounds, 8 pounds, or 16 pounds.

Select the attribute that you want to modify, and a form will appear.

Click on the "edit" icon on the left of the color you want to edit, and a new form appears:

Choose the HTML color or upload a photo from your computer (if you are displaying textures instead of colors, for instance). The HTML color will then be replaced by the photo of the texture.

Managing Quantity Discounts

You have the possibility to use a system that changes the total price of a sale depending on the quantity of products your customer buys. For this option, click on tab number 3 of the product file, and the "Prices" table will appear.

Click "Add a New specific price", and a form appears. Fill it out and click on "Add quantity discount".

Once you have chosen your values click on "Add": the summary of your discount model appears below. If you wish to delete a value, click on the red "X" in the table.

At this point, you have finished adding your product, and it is available in your shop! If you chose to start the specific price at 1 unit, the discount is immediately visible on the product's page.

Either way, any discount appears at the bottom of the product's page.

Adding Product Combinations

Manual method

Adding different variations to your product takes a few steps. Before proceeding, you must already have created the necessary groups of attributes and the attributes themselves. Once this is done, click on 4th tab, named "Combinations", and a creation form will appear.

If you would like to make this the default combination (attribute + product), check the box labeled "make the default combination for this product".
Finally, click on "Add this Combination" in order to save it. It will appear in the attributes list.

In this example, an attribute has been associated: "color". If you wish to add several attributes, you just need to add one attribute and then a second attribute. When you click "Add", the two attributes will be added.

Advanced method

If you have too many different products or varieties you can use the "Product Combinations Generator." This function allows you to automatically generate all of the variations and possibilities.

Clicking the "Product combinations generator" will take you to the complete form.

A warning window might appear, saying "Are you sure you want to delete entered product information?" This means your product already had some combinations created. If you agree to this, this will delete the already existing combinations. Be careful!

On the right side of this page are your groups of attributes. Select the varieties by clicking on their name. If you'd like to select several of them at the same time, hold the Ctrl key while clicking. Then click on "Add".
For example, in our example, you can select the attributes "Blue", "Green" and "32 Go".

Once the varieties have been selected, insert the quantity of each product in the "Quantity" field at the top. Be careful, it needs to be the same for every combination. For instance, 200 products in each combination = 2 colors * 1 disk size * 200 = 400 products in all.
You may add a reference if it serves your administrative needs.
Click the "Generate" button, and tables will appear below for each combination, enabling you to edit their possible specific prices.

Finally, the combination generator helps you save some time when you have numerous attributes to assemble, such as sizes and materials. It automatically creates all of the possible combinations, which will then appear under the product's "Combinations" tab.

If you do not want to have generated combinations, you can delete or modify them.

Configuring Product Features

The fifth tab, named "Features" is where you specify your products' features (i.e. weight, material, country of origin, etc.). When you create features and values (i.e. wool knit and micro-fiber materials), you assign them to the products when it is appropriate. This means that you do not have to fill out the features fields for each of your products but instead simply fill in the necessary values and apply them later. However, be aware that contrary to the combinations, these values do not change, and are valid for the general product.

Creating a feature

To create a feature as well as its values, click on the tab under Catalog that is labeled "Features". Click on "Add a Feature" for example, to add the types of headphones provided with a music player.

Give a name to this news feature, and click "Save".

Adding a value

To add a value to the feature, either go back to the previous page, or go the "Features" sub-tab of the "Catalog" tab.

In either case, click on "Add a new feature value".

In the drop-down menu, choose the feature to which you would like to add a value, enter its contents, and click Save. For example, if you select the "Weight" feature as illustrated above, you can add feature values such as 1 lb, 2 lbs, 3 lbs, etc.

Assigning a value and feature to a product

Finally, go back to the "Features" tab for your product (not the Catalog/Features sub-tab!) and choose the feature you want to add from the drop-down menu. Click on "update features."

We have just created features as well as values for them. You can now return to the product of your choice, and add features and values.

If a feature does not have any value assigned to it, it will not be visible on your shop.

Entering a Customized Value

If you want to indicate a value that has not been configured beforehand, you can add it directly in the "Customized" field

Managing Customization

Your PrestaShop online store software offers your customers the chance to customize the product that they will buy.

Example: You are a jewelry retailer and your customers have the possibility to engrave their jewelry with a text or an image. Your customers can request the text or the image when they place their order.

Let's look at how to configure this function. In the tab 6, "Customization", you can indicate what type of context (file or text) can be personalized.

The number you write in these fields corresponds to how many of them will appear on the product page of your online store.

In our example, we are going to modify the two values by writing "1" in each of the fields. Once this is done, click "Update Settings." It will then look like this:

Once this is done, click on "Save labels." You should now see it appear in the lower part of the screen.

The advantage of this function is that it offers your customers a personal service, which they will without a doubt appreciate!

Managing Attachments

PrestaShop enables you to make some files available to your customers before their purchase.

For example, let's say you sell electronics, and you would like to urge your customers to read a document on how a product works. You can upload a document for that purpose.

First, click on the seventh tab for your product, "Attachments".

Now the "Download" tab will appear in your online store and your customers can download that file that you just saved.

You can view all of your store's attachments (and add more) by clicking the "Attachments" sub-tab, under the "Catalog" tab.