The Administration Console:First Look

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Upon logging in you will be presented with a series of links to access the administration areas of the web site. Which links are available is governed by what functions are ‘turned on’ for the web site (manageable by the ‘Settings’ area) and what functions you have rights to access. The administrators group (which the default administration account belongs to) has rights to access everything.

A quick breakdown of all the site functions (links you see at the top of the administration console) and what they do:

logs you out and places you in the home page.
links to the home page of the web site
SnapShot Reports
High level reporting console to monitor site activity. Snapshot reports can be customized to show the reports important to the manager's role. Reports in this center include sales totals, sales history, days-to-sale, page content updates, product content updates, form submissions, forum posts, email subscribers, popular searches, failed searches, sales funnel and more.
used to manage all pages of the website. Note that this system does not follow the typical paradigm of separating categories, subcategories, products and information pages. All pages are accessible and manageable through page management including the aforementioned pages, shopping cart, checkout process, user registration and account functions, etc. If it is a page the web site visitor can see, it exists in page management. Tools are provided to create RSS feeds, printable or mobile formats of any and all pages.
Image Library and File Library
pops up the image and file management libraries where you can upload, edit, delete images and files that will be available to web site pages, products, etc. The image library is presented in 'photo album' fashion, from which you can place images into any page's content, upload new images from your local computer, organize the images and even perform basic editing such as cropping and resizing. The file library library is presented in 'file manager' style, from which you can link any file into any page's content, upload new files from your local computer and organize the files.
Content Libraries
Provides content managers the means to create and modify content lists that can contain lists of text or images. These content lists can be placed into templates by integrators to allow visitors to make selections in custom forms, product checkout process and more.
Especially useful for conversions from older website platforms, url mapping allows you to create ‘alias’ urls to pages in the website. This will allow you to keep old links in tact so web site conversions don’t lose their search engine listings or accessibility from links on other sites. URL maps are also useful for creating SEO (Search Engine Optimization) friendly links that will significantly improve your search engine rankings.
Used to create the CNav menu bar links that will be consistent on all pages. Though most sites use one menu set throughout the site, you have the ability to create multiple menu sets, swap them out or assign different ones to different templates if you wish to show different menu bar options in varying areas of the site.
Landing Pages
Allows you to set different home pages for different users based on their account specifics. If the user goes to the root of the web site and qualifies for a landing page, that landing page will be displayed instead of the home page.
Form Submissions
Whenever a custom form is submitted on the web site, the submission will be stored in this area for future reference. Custom forms are used for catalog orders, newsletter registration, ask us forms, contact us forms or any other forms that are used to collect user information / requests.
Pending Approval
The system supports staged approvals of pages, if required by the client. This requires two distinct user groups: page editors (which can modify pages, but modifications require approval before being visible by web site visitors) and page managers (who’s page changes go live immediately, and also have the ability to view and approve submissions made by page editors). Pending approval will list the pages waiting to be approved by managers.
Custom Search Groups
allows for creation of groups containing options that visitors may select from in order to find certain content (products, pages, etc). This is especially useful for select drop downs where visitors can select from a series of product or content groups. Custom search groups accommodates the creation of groups, creation of options within the groups and assignment of pages to each option which will be returned upon selection of the option.
Once a visitor creates an account, this account will be accessible via the users area. Site administrative access is also controlled by this area, so if you have a new admin then create an account in users and give them the rights and privileges you wish.
A running report of who is logging in to use the website and when.
Groups are used to aggregate users and control rights and permissions. Groups can be created and assigned administrative rights via Settings (page managers, page editors, campaign managers, product managers, etc..etc). Once the group is created and assigned privileges, all users belonging to that group (assign users to groups in the Users area) will gain those privileges. As the system also supports content security (disabling page access for certain users), grouping can be used to create page content access groups: each group can be allowed access to certain restricted pages and users belonging to that group will benefit from that access.
all comment / forum posts will be accessible here. Posts can be viewed, edited, deleted or hidden as necessary. If forums is structured to have all posts require approval before being visible (controllable via Settings), than this queue will provide the means to monitor and approve those posts.
Email campaigns can be created, distributed and monitored here.
Campaign Subscribers
Visitors electing to receive emails from the site will be listed and manageable here. Note that visitors can subscribe without creating an account so users and subscribers are not synonymous. Check out the easy way to include subscription as an option in any custom form on the web site via Custom Forms.
Allows creation, management, placement and control of banner ads throughout the website. Note that banner ‘zones’ must be created and assigned within templates for banners to appear.
Products can be created and managed here. Products are also assigned to pages here (and vice-verse you can assign products to a page from within page management). Product management provides the tools to add custom options (color, size or any other selection your customers need to make to purchase), pricing structures (sale, list, bulk discounts), personalization (allow customers to enter a message to be printed on a product, or allow them to completely customize a greeting card).
Product Price Matrices
Pricing matrices provide management of level pricing (i.e. buy 2 for $x, 5 for $y, 10 for $z). Any number of pricing matrices can be created, and each matrix can be assigned to (shared by) any number of products. Use this tool to create price matrices that will be shared by more than one product. For products that will have their own pricing levels that are not shared, a private pricing level matrix can be created in the product management form for the product.
Product Option Groups
Option groups provide management of selections that shoppers can make when purchasing products (i.e. Color: blue,red,green; Size: S,M,L; ..etc). Any number of option groups can be created, and each option group can be assigned to (shared by) any number of products. Use this tool to create option groups that will be shared by more than one product. For products that will have option group(s) specific to only them, private option groups can be created in the product management form for the product. Note that each option can effect pricing, the sku, or shipping weight for the product.
Allows for management of shipping matrices that will govern shipping costs for purchases. Any number of shipping methods and price thresholds can be created. Note that each product has the ability to augment shipping costs with additional charges.
Tax Management
Freeform creation of tax rules. Tax charges can be set by location and as many tax rules as you wish may exist. Note that products can be disqualified from taxes in product management.
Allows creation of coupons and special offers on the web site. Any number of coupons/offers can be created. Each offer is subject to conditions (date frame, order amount, specific product application) and affords benefits (%/$ off sale, free shipping, free product) to those who qualify for the conditions set. Discounts can be set to automatically enable once the order qualifies (they will just appear in the cart once conditions are met) or only appear when a specific coupon code is entered by the user.
allows look up, viewing and editing of all web orders. Note that an order is created once a visitor first enters the web site, so this tool can be used to look up orders in progress as well as completed orders.
Cart Report
A handy report that shows activity/sales based on email campaigns, source codes, date frames and referring web sites. Use to monitor ROI on campaigns and advertisements and to also identify bottlenecks in the purchase process where improvements should be considered.
Page Templates
used to create and control how page content is managed by content managers and presented to visitors. Any number of templates can be created. Each page created must select a template which will govern what data and content are manageable within page management and how this information will appear to the visitor.
Product Templates
used to create and control custom product content. Any number of templates can be created. Each product created must select a template which will govern what data and content are manageable within product management and how this information will impact the visitor.
The core of the engine controls, settings dictates what tools are turned on and off on the website and how these tools operate. Controls are available for image/file, page, banner, service side caching, events, forums, polling, blogging, secure document, email campaigning, ecommerce, user and data library availability, preferences and behaviors.
IP Blocks
All functions that accept user submissions (forum posts, custom forms, purchases, etc) allow for ‘blocking’ of submitting visitors. This is handy for spammers who wish to submit inappropriate information. Once blocked, they cannot use any submission functions on the web site. IP blocks lists all current blocks, reasons for blocking and provides the means to unblock the visitors.