Creating an Online Magazine or E-Commerce website with wordpress
Andre recently blogged about how many people are using wordpress as more than just a blog engine, they’re using it as a full blown content management system (CMS). I’m pretty well versed in WordPress and what’s available for it and today I was looking around today for new themes and plug-ins we could integrate with the AppliedI One-Click WordPress installer and came across a couple items that caught my attention, Mimbo an online magazine theme by Darren Hoyt and WP e-Commerce, an e-commerce solution for wordpress by Instinct Entertainment.
Creating your online magazine with WordPress
Mimbo is a magazine-style WordPress theme that makes use of the WP template tag system to create a very non-traditional layout. You can see a live demo of mimbo here to get a feel for just what it does out of the box.
On Darren’s blog you’ll see many posts of sites that are based on the Mimbo design. Here’s a few links to some of the sites that are mimbo powered:
So with wordpress, a theme like mimbo and a little creativity you should be able to launch a pretty impressive online magazine yourself. Mimbo isn’t the only magazine style wordpress theme out there as there are a number of commercial solutions available too:
- http://www.wpremix.com ($$$)
- http://hyalineskies.com/wordpress/gridlock/ (FREE)
- http://sandbox.limpag.com/ (FREE)
- http://news.revolutiontheme.com/ ($$$)
- http://www.wp-magazine.com/ ($$$)
And that’s just a sampling of the vast number of magazine style themes out there for wordpress. Not to mention the thousands of other themes available.
Creating your WordPress powered online store with WP e-Commerce
Let’s face it, the Internet has completely changed the way today’s consumer shops and has made virtually every brick and mortar store with an online store an International business. E-Commerce is here to stay and as technology changes and evolves so does E-Commerce. Enter, the Web 2.0 era of E-Commerce, blogs/CMS applications merging with shopping carts.
WP e-Commerce is a new plugin for wordpress that allows you to e-commerce enable your wordpress powered website. WP e-Commerce is available as both a free version (for personal use), an upgraded version (GOLD version, $15) and a business class solution ($250). For the features you get, even at $250, it’s a reasonably priced product.
Here’s a quick run down of the features:
- New – Search Engine Friendly URLs / Permalinks (latest RC)
- New - Marketing options under shop options (latest RC)
- New - Members Only Module
- Customizable pagination for product listing
- Unlimited products & categories
- AJAX powered Sliding Shopping Cart
- Shop front highlighting for newly added products
- AJAX powered Web 2.0 DropShop – additional gold module
- Grid View – additional gold module
- Fancy AJAX Alerts on Add to Cart
- Purchase history for logged in users
- New and improved Audio Player Module for selling MP3 files
- Chinese Language file
- Share this / Digg Product social networking promo tools
- Downloadable CSV files
- Detailed Purchase Log & Filters
- Configurable Tax settings including USA & Canada
- PayPal IPN
- URL linking to products and images
- – Next version
- RSS product feed widget
- Google Cart
Best of all, WP e-Commerce can integrate into your wordpress based site as either separate pages or widgets and the available widgets currently include:
- AJAX Shopping Cart Widget
- Categories & Brands Widget
- Donations Widget
- Product Specials Widget
A few sites based off of WP e-Commerce include (this list was taken from their website and may change at any time):
- Eden Ripley
- Crafty Designs
- Standard Electronics
Best of all, the installation of WP e-Commerce couldn’t be easier, upload the plug-in, enable it and configure it. That’s it.
I can see WP e-Commerce being used by people selling online e-books or audio files, subscription based services, donations, merchandise (it includes the ability to assign attributes like size, color, etc to products) and any number of simple e-commerce needs. So if you’re looking for a low cost, easy to use e-commerce solution and already have a wordpress enabled site or plan to use wordpress, give WP e-Commerce a peek. It may not have the features and functionality of the larger, more expensive solutions but for the price, it packs a pretty nice punch.
I encourage you to visit the WP e-Commerce site and experiment with it today.