The Joomla! Extensions Directory ™

SobiPro Popular ComponentPluginExtension Specific Addon

Editor's Note
SobiPro is a powerful directory component for Joomla!.

With SobiPro you can easily create multiple directories or content types. 10 integrated core field types and the possibility to install additional field types gives you everything you need to run any kind of directory. SobiPro allows you to build a business directory or a restaurants guide, a real estate management or a members and profiles directory, a documentation and FAQ area or a download management system, a simple weblinks list or even a blog. Almost any type of directory or content presentation for your Joomla! powered website can be realised with SobiPro.

With a wide range of additional SobiPro applications you can enhance your directories with a lot of features such as a review and rating or a notification system. Various module types are available to present your directory content in different ways.

Earn money with SobiPro. Let your customers submit and manage their content from front-end. Search, filter and view the content depending on Joomla! user groups.

The real power of SobiPro is the amount of customization you have available for your specific website content needs. You can customize all output views of SobiPro through the powerful professional SobiPro template system. SobiPro comes with a default template which doesn't need any customisation. But if you want to set yourself apart from your competitor, design your own template for your directory or make your directory mobile ready by using a responsive SobiPro template!

Please note: XSL Support is required. CURL library and OpenSSL are necessary only for specific features of SobiPro (e.g. Repository) but not for standard use.

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Reviews: 10
Initially SobiPro comes off as a basic extension that feels inflexible. The number of parameters and options is very small, and the allocation of fields seems rigid.

But the real power of SobiPro becomes evident when you start to work with the templates. These aren't convenitonal templates in the sense of "appearance" like Joomla templates, although that's a part of it. These are full fledged XSLT templates that control how your data is presented to different users under different circumstances. With XSLT, you can mold your directory to suit any purpose. By combining PHP with XSLT, the SobiPro templates are the most flexible framework I've ever worked with.

All that power and flexibility would be completely useless if I didn't know to work with it. Documentation is key! And that's where SobiPro shines. The documentation at is top notch, it covers all the information I need to use the SobiPro framework to its fullest. While documentation was scarce during the RC phase, it's now been fleshed out to cover all the important specs, and continues to evolve constantly. The only exception is documentation on XSLT itself, but that's very well documented elsewhere on the web anyways.

The best part? SobiPro itself is free! Being a paid member has a lot of benefits, but even the core component has all the power and flexibility you could need.

And the icing on the cake is the paid support forum, which is fast, friendly and helpful. The members of that forum won't hesitate to come up with a custom snippet of code to get your templates to do exactly what you need them to. Even for some very complex functions. I've already renewed my membership for another 6 months, and I'll probably upgrade to Gold membership when this one nears its end. This is money very well spent.

The downside is that this extension has some very high end requirements for full functionality, and most normal web hosts won't have these requirements in place. Since we manage our own web servers, we were able to get everything to work fairly easily, and that results in some very advanced functionality. Also, if you're not willing to get your hands dirty with XSLT and PHP, then you'll be dependent on just the functionality exposed in the backend and through existing pre-made templates. This isn't necessarily a bad thing, it's just more limiting.

SobiPro is one of the best extensions we've added to our site, and will probably end up being the biggest draw for visitors in the near future.
Reviews: 8
Sobipro cannot handle 1100 entries (60 categories). We have the site on a good (not busy) server but because Sobipro is a resource hog the site is very slow and often crashes. When you click "All Entries" on the admin area all browsers crash. Sobipro acknowledges this is a bug but offers no help, even though I paid for support. Thus, there is no easy way to view the latest new entry!

The support person said that I should re-arrange the directory with fewer categories. I should not have to tell my client that 60 categories is too many!

According to two programmers that helped me, the earlier version (Sobi2) did not have these issues. It seems that the 'new' Sobipro is fundamentally flawed and needs to be rebuilt from the ground up to handle large databases.
Owner's reply

This review needs some corrections and clarifications:
The author of the review is not very truthful about the number of categories and entries. Actually his site has more than 500 main! categories and not only 60. He wrote in our forum "..we have more than 400 categories and nearly 2000 entries..". And as these are all main categories, we gave him the helpful advice to re-structure his categories to make his site more user friendly.
Yes, there is a problem with the speed in the 'All Entries' screen in administration area. We are working on a solution. Unfortunately it needs some major changes and cannot be done within a few days. We gave him a workaround until the problem is solved. So it is simply not true that we 'offer no help'. On the contrary.
SobiPro is able to handle large directories. The author of the review himself confirms that the speed problem is only in the 'All Entries' screen in back-end.

Reviews: 2
Honestly, I used a lot of them. And then I tried sobipro. After I installed it the first time I was very surprised. It works out of the box.
Then I tried to customize it a bit and it scared me at the beginning.
So I risked it and bought the club subscription to get access to the docs. I have to say it was worth it.
Not just that the documentation is good. I have to admit it is not quite completed but they apparently working on it.
But mainly because then I realized how powerful and flexible the template system of sobipro is.
It is just awesome!!
After I read a bit about XSL i was able to do incredible magic tricks with it.
And because it is possible to create multiple directories with this component I can use it for many purposes on the site. It's just cool - one component which allows to so many things.
Thanks guys :)
Reviews: 1
I have been using Sobi2 for years, what a fantastic extension!

My only problem is that I installed RC5 of SobiPro and it worked perfectly, so I installed the final release and unfortunately I now have an error on installation and it does not work. :-(
Reviews: 6
This is an excellent extension right out of the box. Unfortunately my servers did not meet minimum requirements. Therefore I am unable to use it to it's full potential due to the cost of having to upgraded to a dedicated hosting package. My dealings with support were prompt and professional.

Maybe later.
Reviews: 101
I thought that sobi2 was the limit to what sigsiu would create. But it's better than ever! I am impressed with how much functionability this extension has. In my personal opinion I like the set up much better than sobi2, I was able to figure things out much faster and feel like I had more control over it. With this extension you can make all kinds of advanced searching for your content, and if I wanted I could even make a wiki out of it. The upgrade manager is one of the most impressive I have ever seen with easy to find extensions on the list. The only thing "bad" that I would say about this extension is that some of the really cool plugins are commercial. But even without the commercial extensions it works like a charm. Thanks for taking the time to make this great extension for joomla!

Cheers Josh Lewis
Reviews: 7
First - SOBI and SOBI2 took advantage of Joomla's core capability and put it on steroids- J1 and J1.5 sites were taken to a new elevation with these excellent components.

Now - SOBIpro - without a doubt, is the most powerful extension Joomla has to offer. After endless grueling years of grinding this component to perfection, SOBIpro takes all benefits of J1.5+ and gives endless possibilities to webmasters.

With a moderate learning curve, once this component is familiarized - a door opens up to much more advanced realization.

Used car salesman to full 2.0 automotive site - done. It can be modified to be even better than cars(dot)com

Real Estate agent? No problem. Create your personal listings and make the upload form simple for your agents. Don't want simple? Make an MLS! YES - SOBIpro has the power to do this.

Take any item you're selling, any idea you're promoting, any niche you're growing... SOBIpro ads the Socialized, web 2.0, whatever you call it, makes it possible, and runs as smooth as butter.

On one site, I have:

- Used car section
- local business listing with reviews
- FSBO for real estate

On another, I have:

- Video game directory, with reviews
- Gaming clan directory
- User blogs

This component aint no joke. I've been using it for years - if you use it too, the results will cause you to leave a review as positive as mine. =)
Reviews: 1
Until now the only component to create multiple directories.

You can create different directories on the same site, where each directory can have its own entries, with specific fields, specific templates, acls etc. etc.

The most flexible by far.

Fantastic support sobipro development team as well.

Do not hesitate, do not waste time, other alternatives are less powerful.
Reviews: 13
As always the team at SOBI have come up with a solid product - since I have been using sobi 2 (and currently continue to do so while I get my head around SOBI PRO) the improvements are excellent and the first Template is for a restaurant

This is still in RC stage so a great time to learn all the new stuff.

The application installion feature is brilliant.

High time this component went commercial.

Well done
Reviews: 3
Thank you for develop this great component. Fully customizable and works fine with 1.6.

You have saved me many headaches with this component.

Have just done a donation (limited to my economy) from J.V.M.

Thank you so much
Reviews: 1
I think it's the best directory component for Joomla. I like the new multidirectory system and editing.
I think it will be useful, if you will add a menu item to look your own created entries.
So in a whole, the excellent work for us! ;)
Reviews: 117
I wish I had the time to write an essay on what I think about this Component, but an overview will have to do. I have been using Sobi2 for the past 2 years on a business website for the Yachting Industry which has been working perfectly.

When I saw that a Pro version was coming out, I didn't think that it could get any better... WOW, what a transformation.

You guys have done a stirling job developing this and I will be donating to the future development of it. I would ask you to please use some of the donation on a round of beers. You guys deserve it.

Can't thank you enough, its bloody superb.
Reviews: 1
As a web designer and having used Joomla from 1.0.0. I am happy with SobiPro. Out the box it is easy to install and use. Modification of the templates is reasonably easy for designers. It is worth paying for the club membership. The forum is active and they respond fast. I see this component growing. Being able to have sections and categories is the biggest advantage over Sobi2. Creating classified adds in Joomla was a problem for many years, but they have created a solution.
Reviews: 4
I started with the people over at Sobi with Sobi2, which was a great directory component for Joomla, but was lacking some key things.

When Sobipro came out I started diving into it to learn its in's and out's. I have to agree with some of the other reviews that sobipro is more than just a directory component. You can use as content construction kit (CCK) also. You have to pay for applications, add-on form fields, etc. to get some certain stuff for it, but it is worth it. The support you get in the forums is great.

One thing people will need to know when implementing sobipro into your Joomla site is that if you want to customize the templates for sobipro you will have to learn xsl. This is not a bad thing, but it a fyi for future users.

If you need a directory or cck this is the component for you. I will be using this component on most of my sites and will be monitoring its progress.

Thanks for a great component for Joomla!
Reviews: 2
Sobi2 was very good allready. SobiPro is like having unlimited simultanious Sobi2 installations. (and more)
You can now have many different content types each with a seperate set of custom fields, each with a seperat set of templates and each with a different set of ACL's.
So no need of cloning Sobi2 anymore.

It's not just a directory component, it's a content construction kit (CCK).
I can not imagine anything that can't be done with SobiPro.
I business directory, an ads platform, a plant or animal database, whatever you can think of. I personally plan to realize a fish database with it. I like SobiPro so much that I decided to start developing some plugins (fields) for it.
I get very good support from the dev too. Its real fun.

The developement goes on quick and new fieldtypes are developped quickly.
SobiPro is one of the most versatile Joomla components ever.
Reviews: 27
I was a bit cynical at first as I've resented using Sobi2 for some time - it was clunky, difficult to make look professional, and awkward for both the client and the administrator.

I was quite suprised by the complete overhaul the team have given Sobi with the release of SobiPro - a clean and professional interface with an integrated update facility, much more refined directory entry creation, and easy to understand configuration.

There are some features missing from Sobi2 but many of these are being introduced in a phased approach to SobiPro.

Support is very responsive and extremely helpful on the club forums, with quick answers to my questions and helpful feedback to help troubleshoot problems.

Overall, very impressed and most definitely an extension to watch - very promising!
Reviews: 2
SobiPro is by far the best component that I have found to manage all types of content, articles or entries. The possibilities are endless, with a wide variety of customizable functions that can be changed to fit the needs of your website.

Whether you would like to have a simple company directory on your site, have a system for people to enter an event (and even pay online), or create a product/service directory for your business... SobiPro can do it!

And now with the possibility to have multiple sections, you can manage your content with one installation of SobiPro. Great work to the development team on SobiPro, your time and efforts are greatly appreciated!
Reviews: 1
I'm using Sobipro since 4 months.
I have 2 points too highlight :
- The stability of Sobipro is excellent, incredible for such a joung product.
- The reactivity and disponibility of the Sobipro Team is the best I have never seen on the net.

A big THANK YOU to this team !
Reviews: 1
In my opinion this is the best component to build any kind of directories.Thank you for your work! I hope that the project will be well developed.
Reviews: 1
Sobipro is the most magnificent online directory component for Joomla 1.5, 1.6, and thus far beyond any additional component. It’s a free and paid component, but completely different from the other components out there on the market. Its customer service and quality support is tremendously superior to that of any component on the market. It will make your business profitable and insure your business success if you take advantage of this component. Beyond that, it takes the understanding of Human Interface Design into a most interesting and creative perspective, while maintaining its uniqueness in its ability to provide excellent AI mimicking.

Sobipro is a free component that does not require you to have their logo on every page of the component. It is free in the way that it has full general functionality. Not only does it give you all of this for free, but it still provides an outstanding community support forum for none paying members. It is free in the way that you are gaining expert consulting from experienced developers who obviously have a lot of education and knowledge in the computer programming and software engineering discipline. So when we talk about free with Sobipro, we are not talking about just a component, we are talking about free as in saving you money as a developer or business, because the support and quality is there in the component.

Sobipro offers a reasonable paid version of the component, which provides priority support and of course additional programs that can be incorporated in the software. Of course these programs you could build yourself and integrate into the software yourself, Sobipro makes this easy, but it sure saves you a lot of time and money to get them for free with a very low membership price. The support is truly outstanding because they tend to look into issues that have nothing to do with Sobipro as a component itself, but with the way in which other extensions operate with it. Unlike shameful products that do not give you this kind of support, sobipro developers try their hardest to help you out and become successful. They also provide tutorials on top of the community support. These tutorials are easy to understand and if you do not understand them, the developers are more than happy to help you in the forum. In doing business for over 20 years, this type of support is un-matched and un-expected, programmers that provide support at this quality level generally cost a company around 60,000-90,000 a year. These guy’s are not the general fly by night web designers, they are authentic software engineers.

We currently have over 200 websites online marketed to different marketing attributes. Although we are not the largest company, we have experienced well over a million dollars a year in sales revenue. We have been in business for over 20 years. We have tried other directory components such as some of the repulsive components that attempt to charge you for every application, that shockingly does not work, and they attempt to offend you by stating that its your fault. Then we have experienced the difficulties in re-writing and cleaning up their code. We have tried components that promise search engine optimization, but only lead to outrageous amounts of disappointments. We are very critical about the components we use and we find it most important to write about excellent components that we think will help others to become successful, so that others do not half to go to the irritating experiences we have over the years with faulty components.

So let’s share the differences between how sobipro makes you money compared to the horrible components that may not. Sobipro provides excellent SEO. You can make as many custom fields as you want and you can call them into the template. So you can take SEO out of the hands of the user and place it into the hands of the developer. The developer can write automatic text into the template and make it call on certain fields. In this way the developer can insure that there is SEO inside each directory entry and at the same time allow the user to focus more on the content. Almost any field can be placed into the meta tags or keywords of the component with just a selection of that field. Titles are automatically inserted into the URL’s helping search engines find exactly what it needs to find to make the search more relevant. It works, we have proved it time and time again. This is great, because the component helps search engines and makes it easier for the user for SEO.

So let’s take a look at the Human Factor that many development companies seem to have an inferior understanding of, but Sobipro does an excellent job of valuing it. Sobipro just understands that it is not humans that we need to make smarter, but it is web sites that need to become smarter. They need to understand how to communicate with humans better. That way it can free people to make a selection on the website and free them up to do more things in life. No one likes to be stressed out when they visit a website. I think this is the root understanding of computer simulation towards artificial intelligence. Developers seem to forget that their job is to make sure the website is simple and has clarity. Websites are not human in nature, but if they represent human thoughts and human organizations. Therefore, websites should be able to mimic the function of our personalities and our human minds. When we build a website we want it to reflect our beliefs, our organization, our respect to details, and our effectiveness. We want our websites to be able to think and believe as we do. We want them to respond and act in the passion in which we do. Although websites are not us, they are a symbol of our structure and beliefs.

Our goal in our business is to be fast to respond, be flexible with our customers, and to provide the ebst quality human interaction as possible. That is why we like the sobipro template. It allows us to control the SEO in a way that the text is human in nature. It allows us to easily to add notes and descriptions that allow our users to understand what each entry field is for. It allows us to take the burden of SEO away from our users and place it in the hands of our developers. This free’s the burden of SEO from our users. It allows us to make categories that we group things in or simply make a field called categories that users can simply search with. It is so much easier for a user to click on search, select a field category, and stay on the same exact page to see the results. This means that the user never needs to leave the page. If the user does not find what they want, they just select new search options, hit search and never leave the page. This symbolizes our speed, flexibility, and fast system thanks to SobiPro.
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