New Shop Front for Graphicline Shop

Break to Renew Shop Front Page

new shop front page iconThe new shop front page finally got started today, after being a low priority for several weeks. I decided to take a break from the tedious work of capturing products today to do something about the front page of the website, which was looking tacky after changing the layout width.

First off a new sliding banner got set up with 1080 pixel wide images, 100 px wider than the old slider. The banner is also lower in height by 80 pixels. The change of the catalogue from WPOnlineStore to CartPress resulted in an increase to the width of the site pages, and the old banner looked very untidy.

New Review Feature

new shop frontpage imageAdding the  CartPress plugin provides a nifty feature to include other content in pages, and the new shop front puts this to good use. A row of product overview or review pages is now included below the front page text.

Previously I had a list of links to these pages on the right hand side, but the short summaries with title and image looks a lot better – at least I think it does!

CartPress has a built-in option to use it for a framework, as well as (or instead of) an e-commerce system. This plugin could be useful for many other users who want to feature posts and pages without finding a theme that has this option. After I have used the plugin for sometime I will publish a review and user guide…

If you want, you can view the new shop front page at Graphicline PC from this link

New Catalogue in Progress

The catalogue rebuild has progressed slowly; adding products takes time which is in short supply. At this point I have re-captured about ¼ of the total catalogue – around 80 products and another 200 to go to get back to the point it was before switching systems…

pc shop catalogue screenshotThe new catalogue does look different… however it is business-like. The big difference with CartPress is everything has to be built up  – no ready-to-go framework like the previous osCommerce based system had. So there’s a lot more work to get things sorted into categories and sub-categories.

Very strong SEO – one very noticeable improvement is the sudden increase in traffic from Google. Not surprising – Google couldn’t index the previous catalogue’s items, which was the reason for changing systems. Now the ‘Big G‘ is sending a lot of traffic directly to the products.

Another good thing which was not possible with the previous system is the canonical setting for very similar products, e.g. you have 4 USB Flash Drives of the same type, the only difference is storage capacity, 4GB, 8GB, 16GB, and 32GB. There’s not much to add by way of content to such a simple product description anyway, so you end up with 4 near identical pages – which the Google really doesn’t like. Choosing one of these, and adding a canonical relationship to the other three keeps Google happy.

Now Back to the Mill

I just thought I’d share this latest news with everyone. Now it’s back to the catalogue, and battling with the appalling internet connectivity the entire country is suffering with these days. It’s getting really bad, with no sign of any improvement…

me on google plus+Mike Otgaar

About Mike

Web Developer and Techno-geek Saltwater fishing nut Blogger

Posted on August 4, 2012, in General News and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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