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thrifty
Starting Member

11 Posts

Posted - March 05 2008 :  22:47:11  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hi there,

I am looking to add a couple of the advanced search options to the shoppage_header.htm. I am looking to be able to search by category & supplier as well as keywords. Can someone help me with the code to get this done?

Thanks,
Stewart

devshb
Senior Member

United Kingdom
1898 Posts

Posted - March 06 2008 :  02:32:32  Show Profile  Visit devshb's Homepage  Reply with Quote
for the supplier aspect, our manufacturer/supplier addon might do what you're after:
http://www.bigyellowzone.com/shopexd.asp?id=154

however, for that, and for the category aspect, it depends on the exact nature of what you want to do.

for example, is it that the user enters a text value to search on, and then you want the system to check keywords/supplier-names/categories for that text value, and/or......

is it that the user should also be able to pick a specific supplier from a list and show products for that supplier

or a combination

from our side, there are basically 2 core addons that would help across all of this (apart from the supplier addon), and they are:

Keywords tools:
http://www.bigyellowzone.com/shopexd.asp?id=150
This is where you can run the tool in admin and it'll copy down all your category level keywords to the corresponding products keywords, which means that if a customer searches for something that relates to a category (and not specifically the product) then they'll get all the products matching to the category. It'll do a lot more than that, but basically the idea is that you'd use the tool to build your product keywords, sourcing your keywords from wherever you want.

Enhanced Paging/Searching:
http://www.bigyellowzone.com/shopexd.asp?id=159
One of the things that this addon does is to show "related categories", so you get a list of relevant categories from your search as well as all the hit-products. It also has configurable filtering on it.

Those 2 addons work well together because they both help to increase the relevance/accuracy of search results and help navigation.

This kind of aspect is usually tailored specifically to each site (ie each site will be different in the exact kind of searches/filters/logic that you'd use), but the addons above would usually be able to deal with most sites' needs and would just need their configuration set according to what the site wants.

Simon Barnaby
Developer
[email protected]
www.BigYellowZone.com
Web Design, Online Marketing and VPASP addons

Edited by - devshb on March 06 2008 02:34:39
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thrifty
Starting Member

11 Posts

Posted - March 06 2008 :  14:27:32  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hi Simon,

What I am trying to achieve is something like the search on this page: http://www.petersofkensington.com.au/Home/

Basically I just need to know how to put the "search by product category" option from the advanced search page into shoppage_header.htm and if there is a way to have another drop-down box searching by supplier.

Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks,
Stewart
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devshb
Senior Member

United Kingdom
1898 Posts

Posted - March 06 2008 :  15:51:54  Show Profile  Visit devshb's Homepage  Reply with Quote
ah; I see what you mean; context-sensitive keyword searches (where the context is driven by other optionally chosen poplists on the search miniform)

There are various urls you can post to when it comes to executing searches on vpasp (shopquery, shopsearch, shopdisplayproducts; each thing does something subtly different and use different argument names/logic), so it's probably possible to execute a search using standard vpasp urls as long as the fields have the right names. But, then you'll have the issue of how to create the poplists (preferably driven by reference data, ie the categories/suppliers, rather than hard-coded values.

As far as I know there's no built-in way of generating those poplists, there are lots of functions which do similar things, for example there is a category poplist built into the system, but it'll auto-post as soon as you choose a value, and the values you want in your category poplist might be different/specific to your site (eg top level categories only perhaps, or maybe excluding some categories which aren't relevant to a search, or maybe down to the 2nd level but not the 3rd etc).

If it were me, I'd definitely apply our paging addon, possibly also our supplier addon to help generate the initial supplier poplist in the parameter form, code-up a custom-built category poplist for the search form, and then code-up a mini-form for the search bit which then calls the paging addon (basically it'd post directly to shopdisplayproducts.asp with your parameters).

One of the advantages of the paging addon would be that for the supplier/keyword that you've entered from your search, the results page would show you what you'd chosen for the search and you'd be able to change/add the supplier and/or keywords to refine/change the search via the search-results filter. Hard for me to explain without you seeing it all in action.

So, I think those addons would help hugely, but you'd also need a bit of manual customisation for some elements of it.

All these things are pretty easy/quick to do from a developer's point of view, but there are probably too many options/aspects to it to give a simple how-to set of steps and sample code on the forum, because it all has to hang together properly throughout the site and fit in with the data/structure etc.

I'm obviously biased on this because we sell the paging/supplier addons etc, but trying to be detached I still think I'd use those addons, then contract a quick job to put it all together to fit the site (eg after basic installation of those addons, it wouldn't take longer than an hour to get everything working how you need from a developer's viewpoint).

Simon Barnaby
Developer
[email protected]
www.BigYellowZone.com
Web Design, Online Marketing and VPASP addons

Edited by - devshb on March 06 2008 15:57:44
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Amarinder
Starting Member

Australia
24 Posts

Posted - March 14 2008 :  18:15:40  Show Profile  Visit Amarinder's Homepage  Reply with Quote
I can give you the supplier drop down if interested similar to this one below:
www.sydneytools.com.au
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