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Reference Guide

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Attributes are features or properties of a product. For example, if you sell t-shirts, you might create attributes like "Size" and "Color."

Product Size

Each row in the table above is a Variant (variation) of the same basic product. The purpose of Attributes and Variants is to make it easier for you to create and maintain your on-line inventory.

You could create each of the above t-shirts as separate product, but an easier way is to:

  1. Enter the basic t-shirt once (called the master product).
  2. Create Attributes for Size and Color.
  3. Let the system generate all of the possible combinations. See Generate Variants button

You can then edit the list of variants to remove the ones that you don't carry and change other information, such as pricing and inventory.

A variant is just a product that you have on hand and sell. If you sell a "Zoo T-Shirt" in three sizes and two colors, you stock and sell six variations of the same basic shirt. The master product/variant idea is a way that Miva Merchant helps you organize your on-line store. Your inventory remains the same either way.


Here's how variants look in the admin interface:

In the Menu> Catalog > Products tab, click Show Product Products and select All.



In Miva Merchant, Attributes are product features such as size and color. Options are individual selections. For example:


To Add an Attribute

  1. Edit a product and select the Attributes tab.
  2. In the Attributes tab, click Add Attribute.
  3. Fill out the fields (see below for more information), then click the Save Product Attribute Savebutton.


To Edit An Attribute

To Add Options to an Attribute

  1. Select the Attribute.
  2. Select the Attributes

  3. Click the Add Option button.
  4. Edit Product

  5. When you have finished entering data in all of the fields, click Saveto save the option.
  6. Note that if you edit an option, you'll see a button at the end of the row; either setor Unset.
  7. Set Option

    These buttons let you control whether the current option is selected as the default when customers view the product in your store. If you click Set, the current option is set as the default.

Code: a required field that identifies the attribute or option in the admin interface. You could enter "Size" or "Color" here.

Prompt: the attribute or option name that customers will see when they visit your store. It can be the same as the Code. If you charge more for a particular option, you may want to put the extra cost into the Prompt. This may be less convenient for you, but it makes it easier for the customer to understand that they are being charged more for that option.

Code Prompt

Image: Attributes and options can have an associated image that will show up in the product page.

See also Add Image(s) to the Option's Part Products Button.

Color Swatch

Type: Select the type of control you want customers to see when they select an option. The choices are: Radio Buttons, Drop-down List, Checkbox, Text Field, Text Area, and Swatch - Drop-down List.

Note: In addition to selecting the type of option control your customers will see, the Type drop-down list can also be used to select an Attribute Template. See Copy below.

Option Control

Price: Enter a retail price for this attribute, if any. Note that this will be added to base price of the product. For example, if you entered $10.00 as the price when you created the t-shirt product (add/edit product > Product tab > Details section > Price field), and you enter $5.00 as the attribute price (monogramming for example) then the price of the t-shirt with this attribute will be $15.00.

Cost: Enter the wholesale cost of this attribute, if any.

Weight: Enter a weight for the attribute, if any. Note that this weight will be added to the weight that you entered for the product.

D: Default option. This checkbox only applies to options. If you check this box, this option will be selected by default when customers view this product in your store. You'll only see this checkbox when you first create the option. If you edit the option, you see the Set and Unset buttons.

R: Required. Applies only to the attribute. If you check this box, customers must select one of the options in this attribute before they can click the Add to Basket button.

I: Enables inventory tracking at the attribute level. If you enable inventory at the attribute level, the system will automatically check to see if inventory is in stock for the variants that you have created.

Inventory Settings

Add Image(s) to the Option's Part Products Button

The purpose of this button is to let you attach the same image to multiple variants. This sounds terribly complicated, but it's really not that bad.

Before you can even see this button in the Attributes tab, you have to do several things:

  1. The product you are editing must have Attributes, and you must check the Inventory checkbox on each Attribute.

    In the example below we've got an Attribute called "Fabric" and we've checked the Inventory box on the Attribute.

  2. Attribute Fabric

  3. You must have already clicked on the Generate Variants Button.
  4. You have to be in the Attributes tab and select an Option (blue in our example).
  5. Option Parts

Our t-shirt comes in three sizes and two colors. We sell six variants (variations) of the same basic tshirt:

small blue

medium blue

large blue

small white

medium white

large white

Now we want to attach some images to the variants. We could add images to the variants directly:

  1. Go to Menu> Catalog > Products tab.
  2. Make sure that Show Products Show Products is set to All.
  3. Edit one of the t-shirt variants:
  4. Code Name

  5. Select the Images tab.
  6. In the Images tab, click Add Image(s).

But we're not going to do that. By editing the variants directly, we could add different images to each variant. But in the case of our t-shirt, a small blue t-shirt looks exactly like a medium blue t-shirt, which looks exactly like a large blue t-shirt. So in this case we're going to take a shortcut and use the Add Image(s) to the Option's Part Products button.

To Use the Add Image(s) to the Option's Part Products Button

  1. Create a product that has attributes. In our example, we'll create a t-shirt that comes in three sizes (small, medium, large) and two colors (blue, white).
  2. Use the Generate Variants button.
  3. Edit the master product (the t-shirt main product) and select the Attributes tab.
  4. In the Attributes tab, we'll select the Blue option.
  5. Click on the Add Image(s) to the Option's Part Products button.
  6. The Image Picker Dialog Box opens. We'll upload a picture of the front of a blue t-shirt and assign the image to the Image Type of "Main". The Image Type "Main" exists by default in new 9.0004 stores.
    • You don't have to assign this image to an Image Type if you don't want to.
    • Even if your store doesn't have the Image Type "Main", it's easy to create it. See Image Types.

    Upload Image

  7. We'll do the same thing for the Option white:
  8. 7.1. In the Attributes tab, select Option white.

    7.2. Click the Add Image(s) to the Option's Part Products button.

    7.3. In the Image Picker dialog box, upload a picture of a white t-shirt, assign it to an Image Type (optional) and click Select (1) Image.

  9. If you want to see how these images are attached to the variants:
  10. 8.1. Go to Menu> Catalog > Products tab.

    8.2. Make sure that Show ProductsShow Products is set to All.

    8.3. Edit one of the t-shirt variants:

    Product Variant

    8.4. Select the Images tab.

Advanced Miva Merchant Kung Fu - Variant vs Part Product

A variant is a generated combination of Attributes. For example:

  1. Create a t-shirt product.
  2. Edit the t-shirt and select the Attributes tab

    2.1. Create Attributes for Size and Color.

    2.2. Click the Generate Variants button.

    Generate Variants Button

  3. When you click the Generate Variants button, Miva Merchant automatically generates all of the possible combinations (variants).

    You can view the variants that Miva Merchant creates in the Inventory Variants tab. However, when variants show up in the Product tab, they are called "part products".

    Edit Product Zoo Shirt

    Part Products

    • A Variant is just a generated data record to keep track of the different combinations of Attributes.
    • A part product is the actual product record that will be listed in your store.
  4. Variants look exactly like part products, except for kits. In our t-shirt example, our part product looks exactly like our variant:
  5. Part Product

    But if we look at a kit, the Part Products and the Variants look very different.

    Part Product

    Tower Kit

    • Variants are generated combinations of Attributes. They show up in the Inventory Variants tab
    • Part products are the variants that customers will see in your store. Part Products show up in the Products tab.
    • Part Products look the same as Variants, unless the master product is a kit

Adding Swatches to a Product Page

Swatches are small pictures that represent an option. For example, if you sell a t-shirt with fabric options of cotton, rayon, and cotton blend, you can create pictures of the fabric samples and add them to the t-shirt product page. Fabric samples are only one example. You can use swatches whenever you would like to have a visual representation of a product option. You can only use swatches if you have created Attributes for your product.

To Add Swatches to a Product

  1. Edit the product and select the Attributes tab. In our example we'll add two attributes to a t-shirt product: size and color. When we create the color attribute, we'll select Swatch Drop-Down List from the Type drop-down list.
  2. Add Swatches

  3. After we create the color attribute, we'll create two color options: Black and Blue. When we create each color option, we'll also upload a swatch image.
  4. When you are done adding swatch images to the color options, click the Update button. The swatches now appear in the product page.
  5. Color Swatch

Generate Variants Button

Use theGenerate Variants button to create product Variants.

Packaging Rules

In the edit product > Attributes tab, click on the Generate Variants button. In the Generate Product Variants dialog box, select one of the following pricing options.

Variant Price is set by the Master Product and its Attributes: When you add a product you can set the price for that product, and when you create an Attribute (such as size), you can set the price for the Attribute. If you select this option, the system will set the default price for each product variant to be:

variant product price = price of master product + price of Attribute(s).

Let's say we created the following product and attributes:

Variant Price is set by the Inventory Product: Use this option if you want to manually set a price for each variant. Since the price is not being calculated, it will appear in both the product listing and the basket. With this option, you don't need to have the price of an option appear in the option Prompt.

Inventory Product

Figure 2: Variant Price is set by the Inventory Product

After you select one of the pricing options, go to the Edit Product > Inventory Variants tab. You'll see that the system will generate all of the possible variants.

Inventory Variants

Active vs. Inactive Variants

You can view the variants that you just created:

  1. Go to Menu> Catalog > Products tab
  2. In the Products tab, set Show Products Show Productsto All.
  3. Products

Notice that only the master product is marked as Active. When a product is marked as active, it means that you want Miva Merchant to display the product in your store. If all of the variants were marked as active, they would show up in your store as separate products:

Master Product

In the case of our t-shirt, we only want the master product to be active. However, there are other situations where you would want the variants to be active, for example, if you have a kit where the parts in the kit can also be purchased separately:

Master Product

In this example we created a fruit basket kit. The basket is the master product and we manually added variants: apples, pears, and oranges, as the parts. But in this case, we made the variants active, because we also sell apples, pears, and oranges separately. We want customers to find product pages for those "parts" as individual products.

Fruit Basket

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