Joomla! E-Commercewith VirtueMart By Suhreed Sarkar
Joomla! E-Commerce with VirtueMart By Suhreed Sarkar.
Netshine Rating: 9/10
In Short: This book is an extremely thorough, clear, and practical guide to setting up an online shop using Joomla and Virtuemart.
In detail: Read full review
Having written part of the official documentation for Virtuemart myself (back when it was known as Mambo-phpShop), I was interested to see how this book would deal with the challenge of explaining one of the most complicated components ever written for Joomla!I’m guessing that English is not the author’s first language, not only by the name, but also because there are few slightly odd phrases and orthographical errors, but even so, the style is clear and easily understandable. The book starts off with a roundup of alternative e-commerce components (including nBill!) and provides a brief introduction to what Joomla is, what VirtueMart is, and how they fit together, as well as an overview of features (nicely done without labouring the point), thus setting the scene for where VirtueMart is positioned in the grand scheme of things. We then get a basic, but fairly comprehensive tutorial on installing, configuring, and using Joomla itself. I would think most readers would already be familiar with this, but it is a thoughtful gesture for those who are completely new to Joomla, and is an indication of the thoroughness manifest throughout the book. The features of Virtuemart are covered exhaustively, and whilst there is some repetition (which is hard to avoid), the style is generally clear and coherent, without too much waffle – even so, at over 400 pages, the coverage is quite comprehensive. Whilst not particularly difficult (once you understand how it works), one of the less intuitive aspects of Virtuemart (in my opinion) is that of setting up product attributes, as well as parent-child product associations. The explanations given in the book, are clear and helpful, with real-life examples showing how to add attributes and properties such as size and colour, as well as custom attributes (for personalised products) and parent-child relationships. These concepts are covered in such a way that they not only show you how to set things up, but also convey an understanding of the reason why the features are there and how they differ from one another, thus enabling you to choose the right configuration for your needs (for example, depending on what kind of stock control information you need to track). Chapter 7 goes beyond Virtuemart itself, and explains how to install and configure 2 newsletter components (Acajoom and Vemod), and Chapter 8 deals with localization including the Translation Manger component. The final chapters deal with writing extensions, maintenance and troubleshooting (again using more 3rd party components), and apendices for dealing with specific shipping providers, payment modules, and useful resources. All in all, this is a well-planned, thorough, and easy-to-understand guide to setting up and maintaining an e-commerce site using Joomla and Virtuemart.
Here is another review of my book ‘ Joomla! e-commerce with VirtueMart’.