I’m working on this post to list my favourite plugins that I almost always use on my Zen Cart sites – I’m up to nine at the moment – I’m just working out wihich others are worthy enough to make it into my top ten. Any suggestions? I’d be interested….
1) Easy Populate
Allow import of product lists – very useful for getting lots of stock into the site at the start. Also works with modifying products too.
2) Sage Pay Form
To integrate using SagePay Form – ie redirects customer to the SagePay site to take payment/ In these days of PCI Compliance its my recommended solution
(CeonDev does modules for SagePay Direct but they are not free – very good though)
3) About Us Page
Lest face it, those “EZ Pages” are not very nice and not very SEO friendly are they?
This mod allows you to create your own pages with associated includes. Painful to start with but worth it!
4) Column Layout for Product Listing
Show your products in columns rather than one long list (does need tweaking in CSS to hide messily long product descriptions)
5) Newsletter Subscriptions
Allows user to sign up for just a newsletter rather than having to register with the site
6) HTMLArea Image Manager
Allow client to upload their own images – and view what images they already have installed.
Much easier than having to explain FTP to them
Even includes simple image editing tools (crop etc)
7) Stock with Attributes
ZenCart by default only allows you to keep track of the stock for the product itself – not its variants (eg sizes, colours)
Use a plugin like this to keep track of how much stock you have in various sizes.
I am very hesitant to put on the SEO mod that I talk about here as in practice it is troublesome to implement and can make the site very slow… Any suggestions for good SEO modules for ZenCart are most welcome!
Update: 30th June 2010.
8) CEON URI Mapping (SEO)
I am now officially in love with this mod. Its a little fiddly to install if you have made any mods to your site (so install this first!) but once in its the ultimate in nicely working URL rewriting for your site.
OK its mostly the Categories & Products pages its rewrites (you have to manually add any other pages yourself – eg special offers etc) But the beauty of this mod is in its flexibility – you are in control of the URLs that get mapped so you can choose nice clean ones, without ugly ids! One thing to note that it doesn’t auto generate the custom URLs on the fly (making it faster than other mods) so you will have to go through all existing categories & products to update the “slug” – but any new category/product should have this generated automatically (I’m guessing it won’t get generated for EasyPopulate batch uploads of products either) Still it works – and I’m in the throes of writing a quick n dirty SQL patch to loop through existing categories & products and insert them into the appropriate table to be used for the URL mapping
Update : 19th July 2010
9)Multi Cross Sell
Only just installed this but it looks like a winner – to be able to link multiple products so that they show up when you view a particular product page. To give a “you may also be interested in” panel of products that you might want to promote.
10) Additional Table Rates
Realy useful to add the additional delivery options such as Next Day Delivery to your ZenCart