Transform Your Store: Understanding BigCommerce Themes & Templates
BigCommerce is a renowned e-commerce platform that powers a plethora of online stores across the globe. One of its standout features is the ability to tailor the look and feel of a store using themes and templates. In this blog post, we’ll dive deep into understanding BigCommerce themes and templates and illustrate with examples.
What are BigCommerce Themes?
BigCommerce themes are complete design packages that determine the aesthetic appearance and functionality of your online store. Themes encompass a set of templates, stylesheets, scripts, and images that create the overall ambiance of your store.
Example: Think of a theme as the “outfit” your store wears. Just as you’d choose an outfit based on the occasion or season, you’d choose a theme based on your brand identity, the products you sell, or the kind of customers you cater to.
Benefits of Using BigCommerce Themes:
- Professional Appearance: With a wide range of premium themes, BigCommerce allows store owners to have a professional and sleek online presence.
- Responsive Design: Most themes are optimized for mobile devices ensuring a seamless shopping experience, no matter the device.
- Customization: Even if two stores use the same theme, they can look vastly different thanks to extensive customization options.
What are BigCommerce Templates?
Templates are the individual files within a theme that control the display of specific content sections on your site. Each template corresponds to a distinct part of your store.
Example: In a house (theme), you’ll find rooms like the living room, bedroom, and kitchen. These rooms serve different purposes and have different designs. Similarly, in a BigCommerce theme, templates act as these “rooms”, handling different sections of your store such as the homepage, product page, or cart page.
Common BigCommerce Templates:
- Home Template: Dictates the layout and design of your store’s homepage. This is often the first impression customers get of your store, so it’s vital to nail this design.
- Product Template: Determines how individual product pages appear. This includes product images, descriptions, pricing, and the “Add to Cart” button.
- Category Template: Controls the look of your product category pages, helping customers browse through different product categories efficiently.
- Cart Template: Manages the appearance of the shopping cart page, where customers review their selected items before proceeding to checkout.
Customizing BigCommerce Templates:
BigCommerce provides a Stencil framework that allows developers to customize templates. It’s based on Handlebars.js, which makes it relatively easier to modify.
Example: Let’s say you run an organic beauty products store. You might want your product template to highlight ingredients prominently. With Stencil, you can rearrange elements on the product page to make the ingredients section more visible.
Finding and Installing Themes:
BigCommerce’s Theme Marketplace offers a wide selection of both free and premium themes. Each theme typically comes with various styles or variations, giving you even more design choices.
How to Install a Theme:
- Navigate to the BigCommerce dashboard.
- Click on “Storefront” and then “Theme Marketplace.”
- Browse and select the theme you like.
- Click “Apply” or “Purchase” (for premium themes).
- Once applied, you can customize the theme further via the “Theme Editor.”
Examples of Popular BigCommerce Themes:
- Cornerstone: A versatile, responsive theme with multiple styles suited for a variety of industries.
- Fortune: Ideal for showcasing large inventories. It offers features like product comparison, advanced product filtering, and customizable product showcase.
- Merchant: With a clean and modern design, it’s perfect for brands that want to tell a story alongside selling products.
Understanding the intricacies of BigCommerce themes and templates is pivotal for any store owner on this platform. The right theme and template customization can elevate your brand, improve user experience, and boost conversions. Whether you’re using a theme right out of the box or diving into custom template modifications, BigCommerce offers the flexibility and power to craft the perfect online storefront for your brand.
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