Zen Cart Show Banners on Main Page Only

The zen cart banner manager is a powerful interface that allows you to easily add banners to your zen cart. By default, zen cart comes with 3 header banner groups, 3 footer banner groups, and 3 sidebox banner groups. Say that you have a special, sale, or announcement that you would like to draw your customers attention to when they first enter your store, but you don’t want the same banner to follow them throughout every page that they click on. This is good policy as it may negatively effect your conversion rates and frustrate shoppers to see the same banner over and over throughout your site. This Easy Help tutorial will show you how to add some custom php code to your zen cart files which will allow banners to only show on the main page of your site and not on the other pages.

In your favorite plain text editor open the includes/templates/override/common/tpl_main_page.php file. If you do not already have an override for this tile, create one by copying the includes/templates/template_default/common/tpl_main_page.php to the includes/templates/override/common/tpl_main_page.php.

Find this code:


<?php
              if (SHOW_BANNERS_GROUP_SET1 != '' && $banner = zen_banner_exists('dynamic', SHOW_BANNERS_GROUP_SET1)) {
                if ($banner->RecordCount() > 0) {
?>

And change it to:


<?php
     if ($this_is_home_page && (SHOW_BANNERS_GROUP_SET1 != '' && $banner = zen_banner_exists('dynamic', SHOW_BANNERS_GROUP_SET1))) {
                if ($banner->RecordCount() > 0) {
?>

Do this for each of the banner groups in the tpl_main_page.php, tpl_header.php, and tpl_footer.php files.

Save your changes and upload the files to your server making sure that you have specified to overwrite the file on your server. Navigate to your site and refresh the page to see the changes.

If you need help with your zen cart web site, absolute web solutions zen cart programmerplease contact us for a quote.

Picaflor Azul specializes in responsive zen cart design. Contact us to convert your current zen cart to a responsive design, or to have a fantastic new custom design made just for your business.

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Zen Cart View Statistics For Your Banner Advertising


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After you set up your banner advertising, it is important to be able to view the statistics. Banner statistics are tracked on an ongoing basis.

Log into your zen cart admin and go to Tools -> Banner Manager:

zen cart banner manager

Click the banner that you want to check and you will see the last 3 days details on-screen.

click on the banner

To view the statistics for the day/month/year click on the “graph” icon:

click on the graph icon

Select the date range from the pull down menu to view the report.

view report

If you need help customizing your zen cart web site, or would like a great custom design, please contact us for a quote.

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Zen Cart Set Up a Banner Ad


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Banner ads can be a great way to promote sales, specials, other services, etc. on your zen cart store. This step by step tutorial will show you how to set up a banner ad in your zen cart.

This tutorial features the Ashley Pink free zen cart template by Picaflor Azul. If you want to use it for your zen cart project, you can download it for free here.

Create your banner in your favorite image editing program. This is the 468 x 60 banner I have made to promote the Easy Help Zen Cart Tutorial.

zen cart banner

Log into your zen cart admin and go to Tools -> Banner Manager.

zen cart banner manager

Click on the “new banner” button.

new banner button

Fill in the information:

  • A. Banner Status:–“active” or “not active”
  • B. Banner New Window–“yes” or “no”. I would only reccomend setting this to yes if the link will take customers off of your web site.
  • C. Banner on SSL–“yes” or “no”
  • D. Banner Title:
  • E. Banner URL:
  • F. Banner Group:–Select “BannersAll”, “Sidebox-Banners”, “Wide-Banners” or enter a new group
  • G. Image:–upload your banner image or enter a local file
  • H. HTML Text:
  • I. Sort Order – banner_box_all
  • J. Scheduled At:
  • K. Expires On:–can set a date or impressions/views

zen cart banner manager options

Go to your store and see your banner in action. Be sure to refresh the page.

click refresh

Banner Tips

  • Sidebox banners are narrower and designed to fit in a sidebox.
  • Wide Banners are designed to span the width of your page (the images should be wide, but not too tall).
  • You can give almost whatever group name you want to a banner. Banners in the same group will be randomly displayed one at a time in the position indicated in Layout Settings
  • You can use an image or HTML text for the banner – not both.
  • HTML Text has priority over an image
  • HTML Text will not register the click thru, but will register displays
  • Banners with absolute image URLs should not be displayed on secure pages
  • Do not fill out the ‘Save To’ field if you are not uploading an image to your web server (ie, you are using a local (serverside) image)
  • The ‘Save To’ field must be an existing directory with an ending slash (eg, banners/).
  • If the banner is not to expire automatically, then leave the expiration fields blank
  • All scheduled banners are marked as inactive until their date has arrived, to which they will then be marked active.

If you need help customizing your zen cart web site, or would like a great custom design, please contact us for a quote.

zen cart plus picaflor azul equals success

Zen Cart Turn Off All Banners


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If you are like me and love a clean looking, easy to navigate, advertisement free layout, then you will want to know how to turn off all of the banners in your zen cart. Making your site as clutter free as possible will help your customers to find what they are looking for quickly. Too much advertising on a site is a turn off and can negatively impact conversion rates. Since we will be using the built in zen cart functionality to do this, you can turn them back on again at any time. This is very important since you might want to use one of the banner slots in the future for an important announcement like “we will be closed on December 25th – December 28th”, or for a specials announcement like “Free shipping on orders through Saturday”. You might also decide to use one of the banner slots for another purpose such as showing your accepted payments, etc. This step by step tutorial will show you how easy it is to accomplish.

Sidebox Banners

1. Log into your zen cart admin and go to Tools -> Layout Boxes Controller.

zen cart admin layout boxes controller

2. You want to turn off the following sideboxes:

  • sideboxes/banner_box_all.php
  • sideboxes/banner_box2.php
  • sideboxes/banner_box.php

Turn them off by selecting the sidebox name and clicking on the green “e”.

click on the green e

3. For “Left/Right Column Status:” click on “OFF”, then click on the “update” button.

click on the update button

Do this for each of the banner sideboxes.

Disable Other Banners

1. Log into your zen cart admin and go to Tools -> Banner Manager.

zen cart admin banner manager

2. Click on the “Status” buttons until they are all red.

red status

That’s it! You have successfully turned off and disabled all banners in the zen cart. To turn them back on just turn on the banner sideboxes and enable the banners in the banner manager.

If you need help with your zen cart web site, please contact us for a quote.

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