OpenCart is currently one of the top ecommerce systems besides Prestashop and Magento.
Like most software systems nowadays, OpenCart is built upon PHP and mySQL. It helps a lot since these are very popular and readily understood and customized.
Personally, I found OpenCart(OC) is especially attractive for its simplicity and light-weightness.
The only gripe I have so far is the way it handles extensions to the system in the form of modules. The problem is that modules are made to copy over existing codebase to take effect.
This way, you may loose portions of your original codes and tracking or removing what has been added along the way is almost impossible. Upgrading and updates may render your customizations broken. I had this same nightmare with osCommerce if not more.
In comparison, PrestaShop is plugin-based where extensions are kept in separate modules. Adding or removing doesn't affect the rest of the codes. Well, if you've no issue with this then OC is a good candidate for your online shop script.
Now, here is a list of things I reckon may help you if you setup your site using OC. I gather all these during setting up a site of mine and I hope all these help.
It's quite likely that you already have your ecommerce site running on another platform. So the fastest way to move over is to import existing data into OC.
Download the plugin from OC Extension. After installation, access it from system > import/export menu.
If you see permission denied error when used, goto system > user group > edit-permission. This also applies to all other permission error related errors. Here OC implements some sort of user "roles" control in its system.
The easier way to manage export files is to first download an import file to act as a template. It's a MS Excel file with several tabs including categories and product details. All you need to do is filling up your category and product details and upload (import) the file into OC. Without that, getting the template file to match OC import can be quite a nightmare.
Search for "auto seo" in OC extension. Download and install.
No need to enable the module as there's nothing to display on frontpage. Enter seo keywords both in your categories and products for it to work. Then do this: module > auto seo > generate.
If you employ a long product description (sales letter) and wanted to place a extra button somewhere near the end of it, you can do it using this code:
<form action="<?php echo $action; ?>" enctype="multipart/form-data" id="product" method="post">
<p style="text-align: center;"><input name="quantity" size="3" type="hidden" value="1" /> <a class="button" id="add_to_cart" onclick="$('#product').submit();"><span>Add to Cart</span></a> <input id="product" type="hidden" value="<?php echo $products[$j]['id']; ?>" /></p>
This is an example:
You can see the whole discussion on the topic here:
Do it in three steps:
If you're using non-default shippers and wanted to define more than one weight-based agent, follow the discussion here:
If you happen to run an ebook site and you have lots of them - the challenge will be the uploading of ebook files. As it is now this is done one by one piece and it's quite a chore. One way out is to buy a cheap plugin that lets you upload all your ebook files via FTP and then assign each one to your product in the back office.
You can purchase the plugin here.
There are also other useful FREE plugins such as Free Checkout, Show All Products etc over that site.
May not be an issue for some but if you wanted to remove it from the footer do this:
Edit footer.php in catalog/language/english/common
Do the same for other languages in use.
Some coupons might have been enabled with valid end dates by default. It is possible that other OC users may exploit this hole. So it's wise to check and change if necessary.
If you've your own tips or just comments, please do so down here.