I create the website for my business for free with Joomla - Part 4
If you start to read this article, it's because the matter of creating a website interests you and that - for the challenge, for the intellectual curiosity or for the sake of savings - you would like to create it on your own. It still seems impossible to you for the moment but I bet you that after reading this series of tutorials, you will have made your website without anyone's help!
Thanks to the first episode of I create the website for my business for free with Joomla, you created a website with Joomla, created an article category, added a new article and displayed it on your website. And all this for free, as promised!
Thanks to the second episode, you have added informations to the books in your library using custom fields and created a page to introduce each author.
Thanks to the third episode, you have displayed the different literary genres, highlighted certain books and you have customized each literary genre with a dedicated display.
In this final episode, you will learn how to:
- display the related books, the books by the same author, the books by the same publisher, and maybe much more...
- add a powerful book search system to your bookstore.
I know it may sound very impressive but as for the previous episodes, you will have no difficulty in achieving all this.
Come on, it's time to get to work!
Let's play with the modules
In a real bookstore, you generally find related books, books from the same author and books in the same literary genre near the one you are looking for. That's exactly what we are going to do now by adding some modules on the books pages.
The objective here is to show you that Joomla allows you to display natively and efficiently valuable informations for the visitors around the content he is reading.
The books from the same author
As we've created authors in the episode 2, it's easy now to use this data to display the others books this author have written and published.
The easiest solution is to use the module Articles - Category where we'll be able to filters the article by their authors.
The books in the same literary genre
As we've created a category per literary genre in the first episode, it's easy now to display the others books from the same category.
The easiest solution is to use the module Articles - Category where we'll be able to filters the article by their category.
The books from the same publisher
Some publishers are specialized in specifics books and we may want to display the others books from the same publisher.
As we've added the publisher in the field tag in the first episode, it's easy now to use this data display the others books from the same publisher.
The easiest solution is to use the module Tags - Similar where we'll be able to filters the article by their authors.
You want more? Sure, let see now what we can display for the categories pages.
The most read books
On the categories pages, you can display the most read books of each genre. But careful, as the filtering is based on the clics, it's maybe not reliable as expected.
The easiest solution is to use the module Articles - Most Read which shows a list of the published articles which have the highest number of page views.
The most recently published books
On the categories pages, you can also display the latest published books.
The easiest solution is to use the module Articles - Latest which displays a list of the most recently published and current articles.
The highlighted books
In the third episode, we've featured some books to highlight them. It could be smart to display a list of these featured books on different pages of your website.
The easiest solution is to use the module Articles - Newsflash which offers many options to display the selected articles.
You want more? Ok no problem, I'll reveal you now some Joomla secrets!
The seasonal sales
Like any real bookstore, you could have seasonal sales (even if in this example, this is not a eCommerce website). If you want to display a temporary information on your website, Joomla offers you this native option.
In every Joomla module, you can define a start and a finish publishing date. This way, Joomla will automatically publish and unpublish your informations.
The frontend display
Thanks to the power of the overrides, you can easily customize and standardize the frontend display of every module and make them compliant to your design. And the best part is that your overrides won't diseapers when you'll update Joomla.
It's not possible to cover in detail all the parameters of every Joomla module here. So, I encourage you to be curious, to test different setups and possible combinations to find the best ones for your project. When it's come about content and its management, Joomla is really very flexible and extremly powerful.
Let's add a search engine to our bookstore
In a real bookstore, you can ask for help to the bookseller if you search for a specific book. As it's not (yet) possible on a website, we gonna add a search engine to help your visitors to find the information requested.
And you know what? Yes, the search engine is still another free and native Joomla functionality!
The very first step is to check if the smart search plugins are enabled. As you can see on the screenshot below, the are different kind of contents in Joomla: articles (content), categories, contacts, news feed and users. If you don't need to index the users and the categories (for example), simply unpublish their plugins in the plugin manager.
Now and if it's not already done, you need to index the content added in your website. Note that you won't have to reindex the new contents in future as Joomla will do it for you automatically.
In the left menu, open Component, open on Smart Search and click on Index.
Click the Index button to run the indexer. This procedure will scan all the content on your website and create an index that will allow your site users to search quickly and intelligently.
Few minutes later, the search engine index is complete. Let's make these informations available to our bookstore's visitors.
To create a menu item link to Smart Search use the following procedure:
- In the left menu, click on Menu and open the menu where you want to add the Smart Search
- Click the New button in the top of the page.
- Click the Select button next to the Menu Item Type field.
- Click on Smart Search on the list of menu item types shown.
- Configure your menu item by entering a Menu Title and adjusting the parent item if needed.
- Click on the Save & Closebutton once you're done.
Once it's done, I strongly suggest you to test the search engine of your Joomla website.
Navigate to the menu item you've created and enter a query in the search form. You should be taken to a list of search results if any could be found for the word or phrase you entered.
Because it's possible and native in Joomla, you can have a search engine dedicated to every literary genre. To acheive this, take a look at Smart Search component and create a filter for each literary genre. Of course, you'll have to create a menu item link to every filter.
Of course and like any other Joomla extension, the design of the Smart Search results page can be customized to fit your needs and the general design of your website.
Your online bookstore is now completed!
As promised at the beginning of this serie, you've created a professional website by yourself for free with Joomla. I'm very proud of you and I expect you will continue to improve your website now. Why not adding a blog where you'll share your ideas, your news, your reviews? It's easy with Joomla!
Feel free to comment and share this article if it was useful for you. I can't wait to see the nice website you'll build with Joomla.