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Web stores need to look crisp, professional and user-friendly. Intending buyers are often tempted to leave the sites they are visiting, if these look cluttered and disorganized. Standard templates help developers to bring out effectively and attractively designed web stores.

This brief article intends to visit the rudiments of effective template design. This is not a complete write up on template design. On the contrary, this is only an introduction to basics of template design.

Briefly described below are the few important steps in template design:


Interface determines the visual impact of the web site. It is a collection of select themes, stringed together to create a striking impression on the visitor. The website interface helps the site owner to lure the visitor to its products and other sub-pages.Every interface comes with a theme called ‘default’ which is the main theme of an interface.


Themes are the culminating effect of an effective combination of layouts, skins, locales and design elements that give the web store its character, look and feel. Themes are highly customizable and depend on the products/services that the web store deals in. A web store can have a multiple themes situation which will enhance the appearance and impart variety to the web store. The emart can update the look and feel in the category and product level, giving greater marketing and promotional power as well as a store with endlessly unique design.


Layouts consist of basic XML files that deal with the technical aspects of the site like, blocks- structure for different pages including control of META info and page encoding.


Skins provide the exclusive look to the web site. Skin is nothing but block-specific JavaScript and CSS and image files that compliment your (X) HTML.


Templates are the basic, ready-made or tailor-made structure for building a web store. Templates are PHTML files that contain (X) HTML markups and any necessary PHP tags to create logic for visual presentation.


A locale is a collection of text files that enables the site to offer product description, pricing and other details in the language relating to the command area.

Technical definitions apart, template design is a real professional task cut out for really dedicated developer professional who can visualize the product line for a website and deliver a decent site.

Store designed to impress. All the technical skill, expertise and experience that go into a web site design are needed in web store template design too. It is no less an arduous task.

Creativity, customer requirements assessment initiative and a will to create something unique – all these are required in abundance to be able to come up with a fine web site.

It is imperative that each web store designer or developer develops his own trusted methodology for template development. But the prime thing is that the template must serve the purpose for which they are built.

Source by Pkp Iyer