A virtual products are non-physical products i.e products that are not shipped, but rather downloaded. For example tickets, insurance, software, e-books etc. Virtual products in PrestaShop are managed in almost similar way as standard products. There are only few difference like changing product type and also some additional option for the virtual product.
For basic information on how to add a product in PrestaShop store, check out our tutorial Managing Products in PrestaShop 1.7
Adding a Virtual Product
Virtual products are added just like any other product, navigate to Catalog -> Products in PrestaShop admin panel. It will show a page with list of all the existing products in your store. To create a new product, click on New Product button on the top right of the page. This will open a page to add a new product with the form to fill all the product settings. To change the product type to virtual product, select Virtual Product from the drop-down on the top of the page.
When you do this the Shipping and Quantities tab on the left will automatically disappear as virtual products are not shipped and you don’t need these options. Also a tab labeled Virtual Product will appear automatically. If the virtual product is a downloadable file, then we can set the options for these and upload the file in virtual product tab. We’ll learn about these settings in the next section of the tutorial. Rest all of the settings are same as standard products.
Settings for Virtual Products
The settings for virtual products can be accessed on Virtual product tab in PrestaShop while adding / editing a product. Open the virtual product tab in PrestaShop admin. It will show a page like below:
The quantity options for virtual products can be managed as with any other product from the Virtual Product tab for adding/editing products. Although a virtual product and doesn’t really depend on quantity in the same way as a standard product but you still need to enter the quantity for the product. Otherwise if quantity is not mentioned, the product will be out of stock and if back ordering is not allowed, then people will not be able to order the product.
You can disable the option of stock management in PrestaShop store but it will affect all products of your store. If you sell only virtual products then you don’t need to manage their quantities, you can disable stock management in PrestaShop. To do this go to Shop Parameters ->Product Settings in the admin panel and set the option Enable stock management to No in Products Stock section.
If the virtual product is some type of a service that customers don’t need to download, then you don’t need to configure more You can just save the product. In case the virtual product has downloaded file (e.g. music, video, images), then you need to configure the settings with which you can upload the product files that customers can then order and download.
On the same page go to the setting Does this product have an associated file? and select the option Yes. A few more settings will appear below that option after you will select yes.
The Settings are as follow:
- File – use this option to select the file that you want to sell. After customers order the virtual product this is the file that they will download. To select the file click on the button Browse and in the window that pops up select the file from your local computer.
- Filename – this is the name of the file uploaded from your local computer. The name of the file uploaded will be automatically put as the in the field for Filename.
- Number of allowed downloads – after the customer pays for the virtual product they will be allowed to download the file associated with it. With this option you can limit the number of times that a customer can download the file. To set no limit for file download leave the field empty or you put 0 in it.
- Expiration date – if you want a customer, who has purchased a virtual product, to be able to download the product only until a specified date, you can put the date in this field. Note that if you remove the expiration date (or you extend it), people who have already bought the product with the old expiration date will also be able to download it. To set an expiration date for virtual product just click on the field and use the calendar that pops out to select the date.
- Number of days – you can use this option to specify for how long the link for downloading the virtual product will be active after ordering. If the customer orders the product and doesn’t download it within the specified number of days, they will not be able to download it after that. To set no limit for file download leave the field empty or you put 0 in it.
After you enter all the fields for the virtual product click on the Save button. The other options for virtual product are the same as for a standard product and are configured in the same way.
Virtual Products on Frontend
A virtual product is ordered just like any other product on the frontend of PrestaShop. Since virtual products are not shipped, at the Address step of the checkout process on PrestaShop frontend only a billing address is specified.
If the virtual product is a downloadable file, the customer will be able to download it after the order is placed and the payment is done. Customers cannot download a virtual product until payment is accepted and its order status becomes Payment accepted. There are couple of ways to download the purchased virtual product(s).
After the payment is accepted your shop will automatically send an email to the customer’s informing that the product is now available for download. The email will contain a link to the file of virtual product from which the customer can download the product.
The other way to download a virtual product is from customer’s account settings page on the frontend of your store. After a customer logs in to your store they can access their account settings by clicking on their name usually on the top right of the page. Then they have to click on the button Order History and Details.
On the page that opens the customer will see a table with a list of all the orders they have placed. To download the virtual product file, they have to click on the Details button for the particular order:
The page will display all the details about the order including a list of the ordered products. The name of the virtual product is a link to the file uploaded, which the customer can click to download the product:
If there are any restrictions in terms of how many times the product can be downloaded or how many days the download link will be active, this will be indicated only in the email sent after purchasing the product. In the order details shown on the customer’s account this is not shown.