A category is the organizational structure or tree for products, and ideally should be in place before you add your products. Building a good structure is essential to help customers find the products they are looking for in your store.
The main navigation for your site is built off your structure. How you organize your categories under the Default Category will dictate how your categories are displayed in the main navigation on the frontend of your website. Your top-level or parent categories are the ones furthest to the left. Categories indented under the parent categories are sub or children categories.
Managing categories in Magento is simple and visually very intuitive. The categories are drag-and-drop; you can easily move categories around by dragging them into position.
Please Note: If you move categories around, Magento will automatically create a URL rewrite for every product associated with the category, if you have your site configured to create rewrites automatically (which you should!) While this is excellent overall, it does create many rewrites, which can begin to stack up with every move. Moving categories around is fine, but excessive or non-essential moving of categories should be avoided. It is not uncommon to see tens of thousands of URL rewrites in a site, but adding to that list when not critical causes it to grow quickly. Careful planning before building your category structure is imperative. Be decisive in your moves – don’t move categories, move them back, move them somewhere else, move them back…
To Edit a Category:
- Go to Catalog>Manage Categories
- Click on the category you would like to edit on the left hand side
- The the right of the list, you should set the following in the General Information tab:
- Is Active (does it show on the frontend)
- Page Title (meta title)
- Meta Description
- Include in Navigation Menu (click Yes if you want it to show on the frontend)
- The Display Settings dictates how the category info is displayed:
- Display Mode will allow you to show just products associated with the category, or a static block and products, or only a static block.
- CMS Block is where you identify which block should show on the page, which requires the Display Mode to be set to Static Block or Static Block and Products.
- If Is Anchor is set to yes and the page has a left column, the layered navigation will show. Setting to No will hide the layered navigation.
- Default Product Listing Sort By is set by the config settings, unless you uncheck the box and choose a different value to sort the products by.
- If you want to display a different number of columns that dictated in the System Config settings, you can set it in Custom Design by changing Page Layout.
- The Products tab shows a list all the products flagged. You can make changes to the products here by checking and unchecking the boxes next to the product names.
- Click Save to save your changes.
- View the category on the front end to make sure it displays where you expect with the products you expect to have associated with it.
- If you want to add a new main navigation item, click on the Default Category, and then click on the Add Subcategory button above it.
- If you want to add a subcategory to an existing item, click on the item, then click the Add Subcategory button above, and it will add the category to the desired main category.
- Drag the category to fall in the correct place, if you need to change the order it was put in.
- Fill out the fields in the General Information and Products tab.
- Click Save to save your changes.
- View on the front end to make sure it displays where you expect with the products you expect to have associated with it.
Remember, if you delete a category, there potentially could be thousands of URLs that now become 404 errors. Before you delete anything, be sure to plan how you will redirect any products or sub categories. If you must delete, move the products or subcategories to another cateogry, then create a URL Rewrite to redirect the category you are deleting to somewhere else.
- Select the category you want to delete on the right.
- Click the Delete Category button, and click OK.