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How Search Alerts App works
How Search Alerts App works 5.0 out of 5 based on 3 votes.

Search-Alerts-App-DJ-Classifieds

With this App for DJ-Classifieds you can make it more user-friendly and get additional traffic to your website.

This app will let your users save the search they made and be informed via email when the new adverts that meet the criteria of the saved search were added to the website.

Users can manage their saved searches in their profiles.

In this tutorial you'll learn:

  • what needs to be done to install and enable the app
  • How the app looks and works

What need to be done to get the Search Alerts App working:

  • Update DJ-Classifieds to most recent version (version 3.6.4 is required)
  • If you're using Ajax Search update it as well (download the latest version from downloads section)
  • Install and enable Search Alerts App
  • Set Cron
  • Tweak the email notification

Installing the Search Alerts App

Install the plugin DJ-Classifieds - Search Alerts regular way as any other extension.

Setting up the Search Alerts App

In your Joomla administrator panel go to Extensions -> Plugin and search for DJ-Classifieds - Search Alerts plugin and open it.

DJ-Classifieds-Search-Alerts-Plugin-Setup

  1. set the status to "Published."
  2. select if the link to save search should be displayed in search results
  3. select if the link should be displayed in category list of items
  4. select where the link should be visible, possible options: Top of adverts list, Bottom of adverts list, Top and Bottom of adverts list
  5. select if you also want the link to be visible in advert details. If set to Yes the link will save the search for all new items in the parent category of the item.
  6. If you decided to display the link in the advert as well you could set where it will be displayed (top of the advert, bottom of the advert or both places).

Add menu item - DJ-Classifieds - Saved Search

This is an important step that needs to be done.

To create new Menu, in your Joomla Administrator Panel click Menus -> Manage -> Add New menu item and give it a Title, Menu Type and optionally a description.

02-Search-Alerts-App-menu-item

Now, add the menu item. To do so open the menu you have just created (User Menu), click "New"

03-Search-Alerts-App-menu-item-NEW

You will be introduced to this screen:

04-Search-Alerts-App-menu-item-new-item

  1. give a title to your menu
  2. click "Select" to open this window:

05-Search-Alerts-App-menu-item-select

Choose "Saved Search" from DJ-Classifieds menu items.
Once clicked you can Save the settings:

06-Search-Alerts-App-menu-item-save

Note: you can add more, different menu items at this point that can be helpful for your users in User Menu.

Now, if you have not yet you can make a menu module that will be displayed only for registered users.

Display the menu module with User Menu

07-Search-Alerts-App-module-create-user-menu

  • Set the module name
  • Select menu that you have created (User Menu in my case)
  • Set the module position
  • Set status to "Published"
  • Save the module

You are now almost set, we have just created:

  • a new menu with Save Search item
  • a new module with User Menu menu that is displayed only for registered users.
  • We have also enabled the Save Search App and configured it.

Now let's take a closer look at Cron settings

Setting up Cron is needed to tell the system how often it should check the saved searches of users and send them the email notifications.

Setting up CRON can vary between different hosting providers, in this tutorial we'll explain how to set it up for Cpanel.

  • Open Cpanel
  • Find and open "Cron Jobs"

14-Search-Alerts-App-cron-settings

Once there set:

15-Search-Alerts-App-cron-settings

  1.  set how often the cron should work - this is the place where you set how often system will check for new adverts that meets the Saved Search criteria for users. Choose the best option basing on your users behavior. There can be different restrictions on different server, so choose wisely.
  2. Enter the command:
    • wget -q -F -O - "https://yourdomain.com/index.php?option=com_djclassifieds&task=cronSearchNotifications" >/dev/null 2>&1
    • where "yourdomain.com" is your website address where DJ-Classifieds is installed
  3. Add and save new cron job

From now the cron will fire the link and send emails to users as often as your settings in point 1.

Email template for Search Alerts

There is a new email template that you can edit to fit the Search Alerts notifications.

You can find it in Components -> DJ-Classifieds -> Email templates -> Saved Search - User Notifications

16-Search-Alerts-App-email-template

 

You can there edit the email template to fit your website needs.

Learn more about the tags you can use in email templates here.

From users' perspective

When the user saves the search and the advert that meets the Saved Search criteria is submitted to the website he will get the email notification about it.

For example, in my case, I have 3 saved searches.

If a new advert in "Real Estate" category is submitted the email sent to the user can look like this:

17-Search-Alerts-App-email-user

Clicking the "Big House" link will open this particular advert.

There can be more than one results sent in one email.

How it looks on the frontend

Search results

To illustrate the process: when I filter the search module like this (I could use all of the filters or choose other filters):

08-Search-Alerts-App-module-filters-save-search

The results will look like this (this is the result that fits the search criteria):

09-Search-Alerts-App-module-filters-save-search-results

As you can see there's now a link "Save Search" - that means a user can save a search with those criteria.

Once the link is clicked a user will be asked to log in to the website or if he is already logged in - will be forwarded to this screen:

10-Search-Alerts-App-user-view

As you can see the search was saved with the criteria used in the filter/search module of DJ-Classifieds, so we have no "Phrase" as I did not use any keyword for search, there is "Books" category chosen as well as other details including extra fields selections and other criteria like that I want to be informed about the ads with images only.

When in this place user clicks the "Search results" to be introduced to the results for that search or click "Delete" to stop alerts about this search results.

Other places where you can use Save Search App

The "Save Search" link can also be visible on items list from a category:

11-Search-Alerts-App-category-save-search

 in this case, only a category will be saved as a criterion for search alert:

12-Search-Alerts-App-category-save-search-real-estate

You can also display the link on the particular advert level

13-Search-Alerts-App-advert-details-save-search-real-estate

in this case, only a category will be saved as a criteria:

18-Search-Alerts-App-cosmetics-saved-search

If you have any questions regarding the app, feel free to leave a comment.


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Wednesday, 19 April 2017 12:09
 
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