Based on Joomla MVC framework with all its advantage:
- Template overriding,
- Implementation of Joomla Plugins for: payment, shipment, coupons, calculation rules, custom product fields, ...
- Simple installation and integration of other joomla extensions.
- Joomla 2.5 ACL
- nested categories
- with meta tags for seo
- with description and media
- with meta tags for seo
- short and long description
- dimensions (weight, size)
- multiple media
- variants, attributes
- unlimited child products and derivated levels
- product pattern (Parent product used as pattern for child products)
- related products
- reviews and ratings
- pricing depending by shoppergroups
- price display depending by shoppergroups
- payment/shipment depending by shoppergroups
- customizable shopper input form
- input form depended on registration, checkout or shipment
- default Bill-to and Ship-to address
- default payment and shipment method
- stock warning
- virtual stock (ordered but not finally bought)
- various type of prices to display depended by shoppergroup
- prices adjusted by shopper choosen currency
- different currency format per currency
- unit price
- quantity based pricing
REAL MULTI CURRENCY
- auto updating rates
- add your own currencies for fixed currency rates
- default SEF/SEO integrated
- discounts based on time, category, shoppergroup, country, and state
- tax based on time, category, shoppergroup, country, and state
- discounts, tax per product and/or order
- discounts, tax have their own currencies (for duties)
- based on plugins, already onboard:PayPal, Paypal Pro, Paypal Express Checkout, Klarna and Klarna Checkout, Sofort Banking and Sofort iDeal, Skrill, Heidelpay, Authorize.net, (and a lot more in the net)
- minimal amount / maximal amount to use a payment
- transaction fees
- by countries
- by shopper groups
- based on plugins
- by shopper groups
- by countries
- guest checkout; completly anonymous checkout
- option to register at begin of checkout
- cart is an object, competly overridable by template
- cart is stored in the session
- multi-page checkout
- one page checkout
- payment/shipment workflow
- order tracking for anonymous users
- order editing
- pdf invoice, delivery note
- topten (most sold)
- native with joomla 1.7
- with extra joomla components (joomfish) for joomla 1.5
MARKETING PROMOTION AND TOOLS
- coupon handling
- recommend a product to friend link
- mail to shoppers who bought the product
- debugging tool
a.) redirected to some post that is irrelevant
b.) Asked to provide more details of your setup which in some cases is irrelevant
c.) Get a snotty response that will belittle you
d.) Stump everyone and have your post sit there for 3 months
I don't write many reviews, but I'd honestly recommend looking at other options if I were you. Plus, you'd probably be stuck at J1.5 ( I don't dare try the new version, for obvious reasons)
It's very powerful in some respects, but seems to lack some very key features, such as the ability to automatically change the product image when you select an attribute such as different colours. It's possible to get this working through a hack, but every other e-commerce system i've used has this feature natively.
On the plus side there are a lot of plugins available for VM, due to its popularity. Though I don't know why it got so popular in the first place!
There are much better e-commerce solutions out there. The best I found were Magento and Hikashop.
I have been using joomla for five years and have never had so many problems with one extension. The thing isn't even coded in MVC which turns quick design fixes into painful hours of searching through hundreds of PHP files in order to add an HR or change a font.
Support seems limited on their forums to other users, most of which are so tied up bending over backwards to get their installation working properly they aren't able to help you.
If you're used to how Joomla since 1.5 is SUPPOSED to work, this template will only infuriate you and cost you lots of extra hours while you fix the (sometimes well known) bugs.
STEER CLEAR BIG TUNA - HEAD FOR OPEN WATERS!
I notice that some reviewers mention that it can be difficult to customise some aspects of Virtuemart, and to be fair, you will need to have fairly good PHP coding skills, but the developers documentation is pretty good and more importantly ... its free :)
I recently installed it for the first time for a client with a small shop who didn't have the budget for something 'better', so I had to make it work. It was frustrating at times trying to figure out what files to edit but in the end I got there.
There seems to be this expectation that the developers should be prepared to answer each and every question that gets posted in the forums. There are a lot of silly questions that I believe go unanswered because the developers expect people to have a little common sense & figure it out themselves. Perhaps if people could do that, the 'real' issues wouldn't get lost in the shuffle.
If you're inexperienced in web design/development & don't have time to customize things, don't bother with Virtuemart. Drop some money on a commercial product that will hopefully offer you the support you need.
If you want to use VM you are on your own, from template bugs, payment not working, and good luck getting the shopping card working.
It is old out of date and time to put out of its pain.
The problem is there is nothing for Joomla that can do a e-commerce. so if you are looking to make a "real" store good luck hunting.
I think even the developers gave up on VM, shame could of got to the top with it.
Hope someone take over or reinvent it.
Unfortunately a complete lack of direction and leadership of the project has crippled it into an extremely complicated, buggy and hard-to-use extension.
It's plethora of features are terribly organized and difficult to gain control over.
I've installed and configured Virtuemart for nearly 2 years now on 10+ websites, and I am still today pulling my hair out trying to get it to do what it should. There are a great many instances of templating headaches and bugs, which make using Virtuemart bittersweet. There certainly is no better FULL solution for eCommerce, but these problems must be tolerated to use it.
One great example of this is tax calculation. On my most of the stores I've configured, I need to disable taxes calculation altogether. There are no less than 4 places in the configuration that pertain to taxes, and only ONE of them is under the "TAX" settings. Virtuemart comes setup to automatically calculate 9% tax on every product. Turning that off is a nightmare if you don't know what you're doing. There's a setting on each product listing, that says "Which tax rate do you want to use." If you set that to "NONE" it still calculates tax anyway. Completely disabling taxes in the Global Configuration page does not stop Virtuemart from adding tax to your products either. At this point, I went right into the TAX rate settings and completely DELETED all tax rate profiles so that Virtuemart had NO Tax rate data to refer to. This ALSO does not prevent tax calculation. All of my products were still displaying taxed prices. Finally after poking around in the user group settings for other reasons, I stumbled across a checkbox under user groups that says "Display taxed prices for this group." I unchecked it and Viola! The prices for my products are now untaxed. This is just one example of the many problems I faced during my many experiences using Virtuemart
Configuring settings should not be this difficult.
Couple that with the fact that Virtuemart is completely unsupported (because it's free.) this is an extension that is a nightmare even for seasoned Joomla operators.
There are support forums, but they are completely ignored by any official staff, and for every problem you need a solution for you'll find 500 unanswered questions posted if you search the forum, and if you're lucky, 1 in that 500 will be answered by another user.
Overall, Virtuemart will get the job done extremely well, if you hold it's hand the entire way. Meanwhile, I'm waiting for someone to come along and make it obsolete.
I had an issue with shipping costs that had to be solved by a programmer aside of the project, sadly this is the case for many others.
I find really ironic how people claim their forum is alive... in a sense is true. Is alive for the 2000 bugs and questions only solved by users, you will be lucky if you get an answer from any of their team.
The best thing about this component is that it's free, and thats the only reason why ill give and excellent score. If you try its modern competitors you will realise how much the spirit of open and free license has fallen to the ground and how some try to make profit from a source that was made free to help people build websites.
The reason why Virtuemart is not appropriate for actual businesses, is that it requires the user to enter personal information before they can see the price with shipping and tax. This will lead to a high cart abandonment rate, because chances are the competition doesn't require this, and you will lose the order to them. Check the forums and the problem is often mentioned, except by the developers.
So, the good points. Its outstanding once working. It does everything you need plus more! good level of support.
Bad points. Its not the easiest of extentions to configure and get working. Installer does not work so a manual install was done (not easy).
Conclusion. Only for the experianced of joomla admins to set up. I would (and do) use this but only if my client requires its features.