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How to create a products catalogue in seconds using integration tools on an empty shop

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Please read carefully



Since we released the first version of our integration tool we have meet many people struggling on creating a products catalogue, therefore we decide to add here some tips on what you need to have and the steps to need to follow to create your shops catalogue as you want it and really fast, time is really expensive these days.


It doesn’t matter if you are a developer or a shop owner, this helps all people that have troubles on setting up the web shop catalogue. Every day we receive tons of emails from web developers that have been hired to setup a shop to help them with this.


First you need to know that there is no magical tool that will do everything for you, that’s one of the biggest errors that many people have, they think that there is a tool that will automatically do everything by a click of a mouse. Actually they are not complete wrong, but to achieve that click of a mouse solution, you need to develop a tool and then to configure it to do the things that you want, we already have develop that tool for you, you just need to configure as you want it.


Any good import tool will create a catalogue on a few second by a click of a mouse, but before you click to create that catalogue, there are a few things that you need to do if you want it to get it right, the tool will do what you tell it to do, let me remind you it doesn’t do any magic, that’s why it is important that you continue reading if you want to achieve that magic.



What you need to create a catalogue



1.- An empty clean PrestaShop installation

  • If you already imported products on your shop, you need to make sure that:
    • They were correctly imported.
    • No empty fields on the products back office; they must have the correct information.
    • It should never be missing the manufacturer, reference and products category.

2.- A file with the products information

  • Mostly this file should be provided by your suppliers with their products. In order to sell products, you need to buy the products somewhere, unless you are a manufacturer. You can find a list of suppliers on the web for the products that you want to sell on your country or regions.
  • The file can be on any format, it depends on the supplier, if you create the products’ file yourself, make sure to make a csv, it’s the easiest to handle and less resources needed.
  • The products’ file need at least these fields:
    • Reference
    • Manufacturer
    • Products name or short description
    • Supplier reference
    • Stock
    • Buying price
    • Category id or category name (supplied in most cases)

3.- A tool to import all products into your shop’s database

  • If you want to import more that 1k products into you shop, we don’t recommend you to use the PrestaShop default tool.
  • There are many import tools available that you can use to import the products for the first time, but tools like ours, to integrate the shop with your supplier and keep your data automatically updated, almost none.

4.- A products content supplier

  • Many people think, that the products file is everything that they need, but the products on the file have only the main information to create your catalogue, you will need the products data sheets to complete the products information, that can be only inserted after you create your catalogue and structure.
  • The products data sheet is where you have the product‘s technical information, marketing information and images.
  • If you input this manually, it takes on average 30 minutes per product, if you have thousands of products it will take ages.
  • With our tools you can the data sheets from ICEcat, it takes on average from 2-5 seconds per product as all images must be downloaded on your server.
  • There are different content suppliers that offer the data sheets, but only ICEcat offers coverage of almost 60% of the products catalogue of many European countries for free, for the rest 40% you need to pay.

5.- And finally a clear Idea on how you want the structure of your catalogue to be

  • We have seen many stores that don’t even bother on changing the order of the default PrestaShop installation blocks, they buy some extra front office modules and that’s it, please invest on a template, they are not so expensive. The front office is your shop, like your fiscal shop, your image, what people will see.
  • If you don’t know how your shop should be, nobody can help you out. You need to have a good and clear idea of what you want to achieve and how your shop should look like, this is how your shop will differentiate from all others that offer the same as you.


Steps to follow to create your catalogue



Just after you have the tool to import the products, the complete products file and a clear idea of what you want to do, you can start on creating your catalogue; if you follow these steps and don’t go to next until you are sure that you have the one you are right, you can have a complete and perfect catalogue for your shop sooner as you think:



1.- Don’t install anything on your store before you get your catalogue the way you want it.

  • Avoid installing anything else while creating your catalogue.
  • If you had setup a template, make sure you can recover you shop where you are at all times.

2.- Make sure your database is clean and not corrupted

  • If by any change you have deleted anything from your shop, then just reinstall PrestaShop, don’t ask me why just do it. If you don’t it you will have plenty of errors on your shop.
  • You should never delete anything from your shop. A Database is relational, when you delete something you break the relations and you corrupt the data, there is plenty of information on the web about this.
  • If your data base is ok, never deleted anything, then make a backup, you’ll probably need to recover to this backup many times while testing.

3.- Reset your shop to clean the categories, products and manufacturers installed by PrestaShop

  • There are some tools that you can use for this; the tools should clean the needed tables. Please as explained before don’t delete this data manually.
  • If you know the PrestaShop database structure and you know your way around on MySQL, you can truncate the needed tables.
  • If you are using our integration tool, there is an add-on that you can add to the solution to reset the store, the tool will also delete all extra added files.

4.- Make a database backup each time you are happy with your current development

  • Make sure you make a backup of your installation when you finish each step successfully, so you don’t have to reset the store each time or reinstall PrestaShop.

5.- Create your Categories structure

  • This is where you need to apply the structure that you have planed, and the whole idea for your shop.
  • Unless you have a really clear idea on how your categories should be, you can expend many hours even days on this. This step is what takes most of your effort and what will make you to reset/reinstall PrestaShop many times, be prepare for that!
  • You can either create your categories manually, one by one, or automatically by the import tool.
  • If you chose to create the category tree manually, you will need that the import tool allows you to relate your shop categories with the supplier categories.
  • If you want to create the category tree automatically according to your supplier’s categories, you have to consider the following:
    • When you have more than one supplier, first you need to make the first import just from the supplier that you want the category tree.
      • To make the firsts import, you just select the categories that you want to be imported, when the tool that you are using allows it, if not, make sure that the products file just contains the categories that you need.
      • Before importing any extra supplier products, you need to manually relate the early created categories on your shop with all your extra suppliers’ categories that you need, in that way the import tool will know where to import any new product.
      • After all needed supplier categories are related, you can continue importing the products of all extra suppliers.
      • With our tool if the suppliers offer the same products, it can automatically create the category relations with each different supplier, you can try it, with each supplier one at a time, it will take a few seconds, if it doesn’t create any new category, then make a backup and try the next supplier, but if new categories are created then go to step 3 or 4 and this time relate manually that supplier.
      • It should not take more that 40 seconds to import 30K products, when you are done importing all supplier, then you have your products’ catalogue ready on the structure that you want.

      [*]If you only have one supplier, then you just need to select the categories that you want to import into your shop, as explained before the import tool that you are using must allow you to do that, otherwise make sure that the product file has only the categories that you need to import, remember you don’t want to delete anything after the import is done.

      • The import shouldn’t take more that 40 seconds on 30k products.

    [*]If you are not happy with the categories structure, please never delete anything, you need to go back to step 3 or 4.

    • You’ll probably need to do this a couple of times until you get the desire categories structure.

    [*]After you finish the imports you can rename the categories or reorganize them as you prefer, soon we are going to offer a tool for that, you can also move products from one category to another.

6.- Import the products data sheets

  • At this point you already have the catalogue in the structure that you want, as you have experience if you have follow the steps carefully, it was really fast, it was a matter of seconds to create the catalogue of thousands of products, when you know exactly how you want it.
  • If you are going to use a personalize template with a different image settings, we recommend you to continue with this step after you have finish your template, so the images can be imported according to your new template, otherwise most probably you’ll need to regenerate your images, and you can lose them.
  • Now we really strongly recommend you to start with ICEcat, and to use our WICEAT PRO module for the ICEcat integration, we know now there are couple of new tools out there for the ICEcat integration, but believe me, the WICECAT PRO does everything that you need an even more.
  • The procedure is what will take the longest but worth it, as it will import the complete products information into your shop, it takes on average 2-5 seconds per product, to import the data sheets of 30k products will take on average 25hrs more or less.
  • Now you’ll see why we leave this step to be the last one, and just to be done when you have everything else set, if you see the difference, to create the whole catalogue of 30k products it takes around 40 seconds and to import the datasheets it takes around 25hrs, if you do this before and you are not happy, you need to go to step 3 or 4 ad you’ll have lost one day and many people do this and that’s why they expend even months on the development.

As you have seen it is really easy to setup your catalogue, if you follow these steps you can do it really fast, our integration tool offer all features that you need to integrate with your suppliers, and it works directly from your store back office, you can access it from any computer with an internet connection from where you can enter your back office.


Before finishing this small tutorial, I just want to emphasize that you should never delete anything from your shop, if you don’t want something to show up on the front office you have the option to disable it, when your database gets full of obsolete data you just need to purge it. If you, like may does, do delete things your shop will become with the time unstable and slow, and there is not an easy way available to properly recover it afterwards.


If you need more information on how to integrate your shop with your supplier please don’t hesitate to contact us directly on our website:


We have done this small tutorial really fast and probably we have missed something, this tutorial is based on this article that we publish on our website: http://www.wasato.co...nline-shop.html

We’ll try to keep updating this information.

Edited by WASATO (see edit history)
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  • 2 years later...

Is that a procedure to install and manage a module or a "moralistic way of life" given by an evangelistic-bad-speaking-english technician ?
It doesn't say a word on a step-by-step way of installing, setting up and giving explanations on "What kind of action may I expect if I set this up"?

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Is that a procedure to install and manage a module or a "moralistic way of life" given by an evangelistic-bad-speaking-english technician ?

It doesn't say a word on a step-by-step way of installing, setting up and giving explanations on "What kind of action may I expect if I set this up"?



Hi CorwinOfAmber,




If you read carefully, you will see that this is the procedure to set a catalogue correctly and not to manage a module.



This is a useful procedure for people with little to no knowledge to create a catalogue. If you follow it, you will set a catalogue correctly, failing to do so, you will struggle with the catalogue creation and you will lose plenty of time in setting up your shop.



We have plenty of users that had followed this tutorial and they have now their stores 100% functional since years and without a single issue. We always recommend all our users to follow this procedure to successfully create their catalogues.



You don’t need to follow this tutorial if you don’t like it, there are many different ways to create a catalogue; what you have here is a simple way that in our experience works perfectly, and it avoids plenty of problems when followed step by step. 

Edited by WASATO (see edit history)
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  • 1 year later...



I bought the module and tried importing the products. I am using Tech Data supplier. Everything went well. The products are also imported. But the following things are not imported at all.


1) Product images are not there

2) Product price are not there.

3) Manufacturer Logo are not there.


Can you please point out where i am making mistake.



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I bought the module and tried importing the products. I am using Tech Data supplier. Everything went well. The products are also imported. But the following things are not imported at all.


1) Product images are not there

2) Product price are not there.

3) Manufacturer Logo are not there.


Can you please point out where i am making mistake.






The information you are listing is not supplied by Tech Data, please read carefully the point 4 of what you need to create a catalogue:


1)    Product images are not there

a.     You need a content supplier in order to import the products an images and data sheet, this information is not supplied by the distributors/suppliers.

2)    Product price is not there.

a.     In the products files only the buying price is listed, you need to add your earning margins to that price in order to set the selling price, for that you can use the WPRICE module or any other tool of your convenience.

3)    Manufacturer Logo is not there.

a.     As the products images you need a content supplier to import the manufacturer logos.- Please check our WICECAT PRO module in order to do that.

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