Joomla! E-Commerce with VirtueMart

Joomla! E-Commerce with VirtueMart
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Table of Contents
Sample Chapters


  • Build your own e-commerce web site from scratch by adding features step-by-step to an example e-commerce web site
  • Configure the shop, build product catalogues, configure user registration settings for VirtueMart to take orders from around the world
  • Manage customers, orders, and a variety of currencies to provide the best customer service
  • Handle shipping in all situations and deal with sales tax rules
  • Covers customization of site look and feel and localization of VirtueMart

Book Details

Language : English
Paperback : 476 pages [ 235mm x 191mm ]
Release Date : March 2009
ISBN : 1847196748
ISBN 13 : 9781847196743
Author(s) : Suhreed Sarkar
Topics and Technologies : All Books, CMS and eCommerce, Content Management (CMS), e-Commerce, Joomla!, Open Source

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Introduction to Joomla! and E-Commerce
Chapter 2: Installation and Basic Configuration of Joomla! and VirtueMart
Chapter 3: Configuring the VirtueMart Store
Chapter 4: Managing product catalogue
Chapter 5: Managing Customers and Orders
Chapter 6: Customizing the Look and Feel
Chapter 7: Promotion and Public Relations
Chapter 8: Localization of VirtueMart
Chapter 9: Extending VirtueMart's Functionalities
Chapter 10: Maintenance and Troubleshooting
Appendix A: Configuration Options
Appendix B: Resources for Joomla! and VirtueMart
  • Chapter 1: Introduction to Joomla! and E-Commerce
    • What is Joomla!?
    • Main features of Joomla!
    • Use of Joomla!
    • Joomla! and e-commerce
      • Affiliate carts
      • Paid access to content
      • Billing and payment systems
      • Auction systems
      • Shopping carts
    • What is VirtueMart?
    • Features of VirtueMart
      • General features
      • Product catalog features
      • Administration features
      • Payment modules
      • Shipping modules
    • Joomla! and other shopping carts
      • osCommerce
      • Zen Cart
      • Magento
      • Freeway
    • Store example used in this book
    • Summary
  • Chapter 2: Installation and Basic Configuration of Joomla! and VirtueMart
    • Pre-requisites for installation
      • System requirements
      • Setting a development environment
      • Getting Joomla!
      • Getting VirtueMart
      • Uploading installation files to server
    • Creating database for Joomla!
    • Brief installation process for Joomla!
    • Basic configuration of Joomla!
    • Basic administration of Joomla!
      • Managing contents
        • Managing sections
        • Managing categories
        • Managing articles
      • Managing extensions
    • Installation of VirtueMart
    • Basic configuration of VirtueMart
      • Adding VirtueMart to menu
      • Showing the modules
    • Summary
  • Chapter 3: Configuring the VirtueMart Store
    • VirtueMart administration panel
    • Store information
    • Shop configuration
      • Global configurations
        • Shop status configuration
        • Price configuration
        • Frontend features
        • Tax configuration
        • User registration settings
        • Core settings
        • Logfile configuration
      • Security settings
      • Checkout configuration
      • Feed configuration
    • Managing countries
    • Managing currencies
    • Using shipping modules
      • Flex shipping
      • Standard shipping
      • Zone shipping
    • Using payment modules
      • Adding credit cards
      • Configuring payment methods
        • PayPal
        • Credit card processing through Authorize.Net
        • Cash on delivery
        • Adding a payment method
    • Adding tax rates
    • Summary
  • Chapter 4: Managing product catalogue
    • Catalogue management
    • Managing manufacturers
      • Adding a manufacturer category
      • Adding a manufacturer
      • Listing the manufacturer categories
    • Managing vendors
      • Vendor category
      • Adding vendor
      • Managing vendors and categories
    • Managing product categories
      • Adding product categories
      • Modifying product categories
    • Adding a product
    • Managing products
      • Adding multiple product images
      • Adding extra files with products
      • Configuring downloadable products
      • Using attributes
        • Simple attributes
        • Parent-child products
      • Using product types
        • Adding product types
        • Adding parameters to product types
        • Adding product type to products
    • Summary
  • Chapter 5: Managing Customers and Orders
    • Customer management
      • Registration/Authentication of customers
        • Revisiting registration settings
        • Enabling VirtueMart login module
      • Managing fields for user registration form
        • Adding a new field
        • Editing a field
      • User manager
        • Joomla! user manager
        • VirtueMart user manager
        • Which user manager should we use?
      • User groups
        • Joomla! user groups
        • VirtueMart user groups
      • Group permissions
        • Assigning permissions to user groups
        • Adding new module
        • Adding new function
        • Assigning users to groups
        • Checking how these work
    • Managing orders
      • Viewing the orders
      • Viewing an order's details
      • Understanding an order's status
        • Managing order status types
        • Changing an order's status
        • Viewing an order's history
      • Order statistics
      • Managing inventory
    • Summary
  • Chapter 6: Customizing the Look and Feel
    • Configuring the look and feel of a Joomla! site
      • Installing Joomla! templates
      • Applying a template
      • Customizing a template
      • Changing a site's logo
    • Customizing VirtueMart's look and feel
      • Look and feel configurations in VirtueMart
      • Customizing and applying themes
      • Customizing templates
        • Shop front-page
        • Product listing
        • Product detail page
        • Basket templates
        • Checkout templates
        • Email templates
        • Other page templates
    • Using search engine friendly URLs
      • Built-in Joomla! SEF
      • SEF with sh404SEF
    • Summary
  • Chapter 7: Promotion and Public Relations
    • Promotions
      • Promotional discounts
        • Creating discounts
        • Adding discounts to products
      • Special products
      • Best sellers
      • Latest products
      • Random products
      • All-in-one
      • Scrolling products
      • Cross-selling and up-selling
      • Use of discount coupons
    • Customer reviews
      • Enabling review
      • Submitting reviews
      • Moderating reviews
    • Newsletters and product notification
      • Using Acajoom Newsletter
        • Configuring Acajoom
        • Creating a list
        • Creating newsletters
        • Creating an article with product information
        • Sending newsletters
      • Adding fields in the Registration Form
      • Using the Vemod News Mailer
    • Summary
  • Chapter 8: Localization of VirtueMart
    • Why localization?
    • Localizing regions and taxes
      • Countries
      • Adding state or region
      • Configuring taxes by region
    • Using multiple currencies
    • Using multiple languages
      • Adding a new language to a Joomla! site
      • Translating the site language
        • Manual translation
        • Translation through the translator component
      • Showing multilingual content
      • Translating VirtueMart language files
    • Summary
  • Chapter 9: Extending VirtueMart's Functionalities
    • Bulk product imports and exports
      • Creating new import and export template
      • Using import and export templates
      • Using CSVImproved for catalogue building
    • Using product tag clouds
    • Using testimonials
    • Improving product reviews by commenting
    • Wholesaling from a VirtueMart store
    • Using social networking and bookmarking sites
    • Using AJAX updates for products
    • Adding some spice to the shop
      • Spicy cart
      • Slideshow with product images
      • Including modules in content items
    • Summary
  • Chapter 10: Maintenance and Troubleshooting
    • Uploading the local site to web server
      • Transferring local site by FTP
        • Step1: Transferring site files
        • Step 2: Dumping and recreating a database
        • Step 3: Reconfiguring Joomla! and VirtueMart
      • Faster relocation using JoomlaPack
    • Backing up files and databases
      • Using JoomlaPack
      • Using LazyBackup
    • Auditing and hardening security
      • Joomla! tools suite
      • GuardXT
      • Some tips about security
    • Common problems and troubleshooting
      • Joomla!-related problems
        • Problems with installation of extensions
        • SEF problems
      • VirtueMart-related problems
        • Problem after relocation
        • Issues related to user registration
        • Showing latest products
        • Issues related to vendors
        • Issues related to VirtueMart SEF
        • Issues related to multilingual contents in VirtueMart
    • Summary
  • Appendix A: Configuration Options
    • Configuring shipping modules
      • Australia Post
      • Canada Post
      • DHL
      • FedEXdc
      • Flex
      • Intershipper
      • Shipvalue
      • Standard shipping module
      • UPS
    • Configuring payment modules
      • 2Checkout
      • Credit card (eProcessingNetwork)
      • Credit card (PayMeNow)
      • eWay
      • iTransact
      • noChex
      • PayMate
      • VeriSign Payflow pro
      • WorldPay

Suhreed Sarkar

Suhreed Sarkar is an IT consultant, trainer and technical writer. He studied Marine engineering, served on board the ship for two years, and then started journey in to IT world with MCSE in Windows NT 4.0 track. Later he studied business administration and earned MBA from University of Dhaka. He has a bunch of BrainBench certifications on various topics including PHP4, Project Management, RDBMS Concepts, E-commerce, Web Server Administration, Internet Security, Training Development, Training Delivery and Evaluation, and Technical Writing.

He taught courses on system administration, web development, e-commerce and MIS. He has consulted several national and international organizations including United Nations, and helped clients building and adopting their web portals, large scale databases and management information systems. At present he is working on building a framework for education sector MIS, and promoting use of ICTs in education.

Suhreed is renowned technical author in Bengali – having a dozen of books published on subjects covering web development, LAMP, networking, and system administration. He authored Zen Cart: E-commerce Application Development, Joomla! E-commerce with Virtuemart, and Joomla! with Flash, published by Packt Publishing.

While not busy with hacking some apps, blogging on his blog (, reading philosophy of Bertrand Russell or management thought of Peter F Drucker – he likes to spend some special moments with his family. Suhreed lives in Dhaka, Bangladesh

Contact Suhreed Sarkar

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Sample chapters

You can view our sample chapters and prefaces of this title on PacktLib or download sample chapters in PDF format.

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What you will learn from this book


  • Install/Uninstall Joomla! components, plug-ins, and modules; install the VirtueMart component and its modules, to start building your store.
  • Configure the shop, create and use the appropriate zones and currencies, configure payment methods, shipping methods, and taxes, which form part of the most essential shop functionalities.
  • Manage manufacturers and vendors, products and product categories, and watch your VirtueMart shop take real shape with the products you want to sell.
  • Configure user registration settings for VirtueMart, manage users and user groups, create and use order status types, view order statistics and order details, update orders, and manage inventory, which will ease your apprehensions about customer service.
  • Install and configure new themes, customize the Joomla! template, customize VirtueMart themes and layouts, and use search engine friendly (SEF) URLs to attract more customers to your shop.
  • Use VirtueMart's promotional tools such as banner ads, specials, featured products, newsletters, product notifications, and more, which are important factors in determining the success of your business.
  • Add further value to your shop by using different regions and region-specific taxes, multiple currencies, installing new languages, and translating the language of the site.
  • Learn to add third-party extensions to further broaden VirtueMart functions for bulk import/export of products to your shop catalogue, update multiple product information at the same time using AJAX, and display slideshows with product images to spice up your shop further.
  • Finally, learn to move the shop to your server, to back up and restore files and databases, and also about security, maintenance, and troubleshooting as a final step to complete your brand-new VirtueMart shop!

Chapter 1, Introduction to Joomla! and E-Commerce, introduces Joomla! and VirtueMart along with some other components similar to VirtueMart. This chapter describes Joomla!, its main features, and the e-commerce options in Joomla!. It also elaborates on VirtueMart and its features and lists alternatives to VirtueMart and the other shopping carts that can be used with Joomla!

Chapter 2, Installation and Basic Configuration of Joomla! and VirtueMart, explains installation of Joomla! and Virtuemart. It also teaches basic configuration of the VirtueMart component. This chapter describes the prerequisites for Joomla! and VirtueMart installation, installing and uninstalling Joomla! components, plug-ins, and modules. It also explains setting up basic configurations for a Joomla! site, installing the VirtueMart component and modules, and configuring basic options for a VirtueMart shop. At the end of this chapter, we will get a Joomla! site with the VirtueMart shopping cart installed.

Chapter 3, Configuring the VirtueMart Store, explains how to configure a VirtueMart shop. This chapter explains configuring the shop, creating and using appropriate zones, currencies, and locales, installing/uninstalling appropriate modules and configuring those followed by configuring payment methods, shipping methods, and taxes for the shop.

Chapter 4, Managing Product Catalogue, explains details about building a product catalogue and managing the catalogue for a VirtueMart store. This chapter teaches managing manufacturers and vendors, managing the product categories and products, creating and using product attributes, and creating and using product types. In this chapter, we are going to add and edit a lot of information about manufacturers, vendors, product categories, and products. In this chapter, the VirtueMart shop will take on a real shape with the products we want to sell.

Chapter 5, Managing Customers and Orders, discusses managing customers and orders. Specifically, it teaches configuring the user registration settings for VirtueMart, managing users for the VirtueMart shop, creating and managing fields for the customer registration form, creating and managing user groups, and creating and using order status types followed by viewing order statistics, viewing details of an order, updating an order, and managing inventory.

Chapter 6, Customizing Look and Feel, discusses customizing the look and feel of the shop. This chapter teaches installing and configuring new themes for the site, and also explains VirtueMart theming and layouts. It also deals with customizing VirtueMart themes and layouts, and using search engine friendly (SEF) URLs for your shop.

Chapter 7, Promotion and Public Relations, describes the promotion and public relations tools available for VirtueMart. This chapter teaches you to use VirtueMart's promotional tools like banner ads, specials, and featured products, and also to use coupons to attract more customers. This chapter also explains how to use newsletters and product notifications to keep continuous communication with your customers and to use VirtueMart's product review feature to express customer experiences.

Chapter 8, Localization of VirtueMart, deals with the localization of VirtueMart. This chapter enables you to understand the need for and importance of localization, to use different regions and region-specific taxes, to use multiple currencies for the shop, and to install new languages for the Joomla! site and the VirtueMart shop. This chapter also teaches you how to translate the language of the site as you require.

Chapter 9, Extending VirtueMart's Functionalities, deals with third-party extensions to extend VirtueMart's functionalities and tweaking some extensions to suit your need. This chapter teaches you to use the appropriate extension for bulk import/export of products to your VirtueMart shop catalogue and to use product tag clouds. This is followed by using testimonials and commenting to improve product review and using wholesaling. You also learn to use social networks and bookmarking sites to spread the news about your site. You learn to update multiple product information at the same time using AJAX. You can also spice up your shop by using the new visual cart module, display slideshows with product images, and include modules in the content items, after reading this chapter.

Chapter 10, Maintenance and Troubleshooting, teaches you the necessary maintenance tasks and common problems that can occur. You learn to move the shop to your server after building it on your local computer, back up and restore files and databases, and handle the security of your site. This is followed by identifying common problems, troubleshooting them, and finding solutions from the online forum.

Appendix A, Configuration Options and Resources, lists configuration options for shipping and payment modules for VirtueMart.

In Detail

VirtueMart is a widely used component for adding e-commerce to a Joomla! site. VirtueMart covers all the aspects of e-commerce in an easy-to-use fashion and allows administrators to configure the various factors such as those of the shop, selling workflow, payment, products, and more. It also has many other features, which include managing customers and orders, so that every aspect of the shop is handled on-line for your comfort.

This book demonstrates the setting up of an on-line Joomla! e-commerce site from scratch using VirtueMart. It focuses specifically on e-commerce and VirtueMart. It teaches all the aspects of quickly setting up a feature-packed, easy-to-build e-commerce site—from basic installation and configuration of Joomla and VirtueMart through adding features step-by-step to an example web site to deployment.

The book begins with an introduction to VirtueMart with an explanation of its capabilities and how you can use it to earn money from your Joomla! site. This is followed by the necessary installation and configuration of Joomla! and VirtueMart to enable you to lay the foundation of your web site. Then it explains configuration of the VirtueMart store, which includes payment and shipping methods, configuring zones, and currencies.

The book then looks at managing products, customers, and orders, and customizing the web site appearance, all through demonstration so that you can build your own store with minimum effort, investment, and time. It also illustrates the promotion and public-relations factors such as banner ads, featured products, coupons, and more, so that you can build a wide customer base. It follows this up with examples of more advanced features such as localization and using extensions for bulk import/export of products to your VirtueMart shop, to suit your individual store needs. Maintenance, troubleshooting, and security, which are essential for running your site, are also explained. There is also an Appendix provided for configuring shipping and payment modules.

A step-by-step instruction-packed tutorial that teaches you to build a Joomla VirtueMart e-commerce web site through a practical example.


This is a step-by-step tutorial-style guide, which teaches you to build an e-commerce site through a complete practical example.

Who this book is for

Are you a Joomla! user who wants to build an e-commerce store? Do you have a Joomla! site and want to add e-commerce to it to sell products? Then this book is for you! The pre-requisites are simple. You should already know how to build a site with Joomla!, have a smattering of CSS/HTML and perhaps some PHP.

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