Frameworks are a fantastic developer tool that allow you to simply take a snapshot of the entire look and feel of your site and save it to a file or a package that can be moved and installed from one store to the next. As a developer, this is incredibly important and a time saver where you can take a snapshot of a framework that has all the heavy lifting done for you, apply it to a store, and then use that as a starting point to build a new store. A framework can be thought of as a snapshot of an existing store. It includes all the page templates that make up the look and feel of the store. The best part about frameworks is that they are portable. You can save a framework and use that on any store you want. It only takes about a minute to upload a framework. It’s very simple and it saves you time, having to go to each individual page and update the page template code to match the existing store.
One important thing to note about frameworks is that they only impact the look and feel. So you only impact pages. They don’t include products, categories, customers or orders. Now most the time a framework will only be installed to a brand new installation of Miva. While you can install it to an existing store, because it overwrites all the page templates, any customizations you’ve made like adding a module or custom item tags - all that will be wiped out when you install a framework. So typically with a framework the workflow would be you have a blank installation of Miva Merchant, you install your framework, which is essentially your starting point, then you customize that framework to change the look and feel to suit your needs. The framework does all the heavy lifting of updating the checkout process, the my account section, all of that is already done for you, you just have to go in and style it.
Let’s take a look at the frameworks section in Miva Merchant. So here I am back in the version 9 admin. Frameworks are located in the User Interface menu item. Here you’ll see a tab for frameworks. Now by default in the store there will be single framework, CSSUI as the default framework. This is Miva’s default framework that comes installed in every fresh installation of Miva Merchant. It includes the html code from every single page template. Now we’ll see here on this list view it has some information about the framework, it has the title and the description, you can also see a little preview image of the framework itself, who the provider is or who made the framework, when it was created and when it was applied. If we come back over here and edit the framework itself, we can see more details about it. Here on this screen it will show you all of the details of the framework. This section shows you all the pages that are pages in the framework. Now typically frameworks will contain all pages from the store. However, it doesn’t need to. This section will show you all the pages that will be updated when you install the framework. On the right hand side over here it tells you what components are part of the store and you can think of the components almost like the settings. The components are the different pieces that make up the pages. Now down at the bottom you’ll see any images that are included in the framework as well as any css pages that are included.
Frameworks are a very powerful developers tool and as you build stores it will save you a lot of time if you develop your own framework where you take the most commonly used components that you use on a daily basis and save them into a framework for your own starting point.
In the next video we’re going to walk through how to apply a framework using the free bootstrap based framework by Miva Merchant.