It is a content manager (CMS) – that is, a program that we install on our server in order to have an efficient and orderly web page that we can manage and update on our own. Its main characteristic with respect to other software of the same style as WordPress is that Prestashop is designed specifically for the creation and management of online stores.
In this area, it competes with other software that offers similar services such as Magento, OpenCart or WooCommerce; and although especially the latter is improving and managing to emerge in recent years. Prestashop remains as the preferred in large and medium businesses. This is due to the large number of management options available, especially useful in stores with a high number of products and that require a complex stock management.
Unlike other content managers such as WordPress or Joomla, PrestaShop is designed to develop an e-commerce platform or virtual store, and this is where we find its forte.
What can we do with Prestashop ?:
- Create a virtual store.
- Perform store maintenance: create, edit and delete content.
- Manage different types of clients and administrators.
- Manage multi-language content.
- Change the design of the store easily using themes.
- Install add-ons that provide us with new functionalities for our store.
Who should use PrestaShop?
PrestaShop is a tool that allows us to create and manage a virtual store, in a very intuitive way, so PrestaShop is suitable for all audiences.
There may be different scenarios in which we may be interested in using PrestaShop :
- If we have a business and we want to create and manage the store ourselves without having to hire an external company that would imply an important expense.
- If we want to dedicate ourselves to create stores for other businesses. Apart from providing us with web development, with PrestaShop, we will be able to decide if we will do the maintenance tasks or if the client will do the same to the one we manage the store.
- If we are dedicated to electronic commerce, we can find businesses that have a virtual store developed with PrestaShop and look for someone who is in charge of maintenance or other specific actions.
Features of PrestaShop
There is a set of features that define PrestaShop as a content manager:
- Design management.
- Work screens.
- Define the functionality with add-ons.
#1. The design in PrestaShop
The design of a PrestaShop store is provided by a theme (theme).
This theme defines what the virtual store will look like and assures us that the entire store has the same appearance regardless of the content that you have entered.
The theme will provide us with a structure (distribution of the elements by the screen) and a specific style (fonts, colors …). We can change the template, the theme, at any time and the contents will adapt to the new design.
We can find themes compatible with PrestaShop on many Internet websites without paying a single Euro.
#2. Work screens in PrestaShop
PrestaShop provides us with 2 working interfaces :
Public interface (frontend / front office): web interface that customers see when they access the store.
Private interface (backend / back office): an administrative interface that administrators use to perform the tasks of store management (registration, cancellation, modification of elements, installation of modules, order management …). Access to the administrative part is protected by a username and password. The front office users are called clients and the back office users are employees.
#3. PrestaShop add-ons
PrestaShop allows us to define the functionalities of our virtual store through some add-ons known as modules or add-ons.
These add-ons control different aspects of the virtual store: administration, marketing, payment methods, statistics …
How is it configured?
The range of actions is practically unlimited: the extensibility of PrestaShop allows us to make the store exactly what we need it to do, instead of having to live with limitations. We can always find the module that does exactly what we need, and if not, we can always search and install new add-ons through the Internet.
One of the advantages of this software is that it has an assisted installation that makes it relatively easy to start up for users with non-advanced technical knowledge. By downloading the latest version of the software from its official website and copying this data to our server we can access the installer that will allow us to have this CMS working in a matter of minutes. Customers will access the main store, while employees will have an administration area where there are plenty of options for trade management: catalog, customers, shipments, payments, stock or even coupons and discounts … Although a large number of options available in the admin panel can be a bit confusing for novice managers,
Start-up and customization
Once we have our store created, surely the first impression we have is that its design is a bit bland and may need some design before its launch. You may also be missing some features that are not included, such as payment by credit card or the payment gateway. It’s normal, Prestashop has a basic design and functionalities by default where we do not have much room to customize the content. One possible solution is the use of themes and plugins. There is online a wide repertoire of templates and plugins that allow you to modify the design of the store and add new features, some of them free and the vast majority of payment.
However, what happens if we want a store that really personalizes and adapts to our brand and corporate image? In that case, you will need a theme of your own. This task is certainly more complex and requires entering the internal code of Prestashop and programming from the base of a custom shop.
In that case, we always recommend that you put yourself in the hands of a team of experienced professionals who design and develop your website. In our award-winning affordable logo designing company, we also take care of training our clients to teach them how to manage Prestashop so they can get the most out of it.
PrestaShop Addons Marketplace
Within PrestaShop’s official website we can find the official market for accessories and designs for PrestaShop.
In this market, we can download modules, graphics themes, and advice (training, support …). Of course, we must take into account the version of PrestaShop that we use when looking for compatible elements.
As you can see, Prestashop is defined with these few pillars so easy to understand, and this is why its usability and ease of management and management, especially to set up online stores, make it the perfect CMS.
It also remains to mention the large community of users on the Internet for inquiries and, equally, you can always count on Prestashop professionals who give you exactly the support you need.
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