Tutorial: How To Create A “Mini-Ads” Module for iJoomla AdAgency…
How to create a "Mini Ads" module using the iJoomla Ad Agency Component....
I've been considering installing a "Mini-Ads" component / component & module on the site for some time, and as we already use iJoomla's "Ad Agency" component to manage our banners on the site I had written to the developers some months ago requesting that they consider creating one to use specifically with Ad Agency. A mini-ads module built specifically for AA would be much better than installing a separate extension as it would mean less maintenance, less cost, easier to manage and it would be automated too (.....all the other Mini-Ads extensions I have looked at require that the website Administrator creates the ads manually after a customer has paid & sent the image & links to be included - which is a poor solution for any busy webmasters).
Maybe iJoomla will create a purposely-built Mini-Ads module for Ad Agency one day, but in the meantime here's my tutorial & configurations to help you create one RIGHT NOW! using the standard Ad Agency module which is shipped with AA......
Before you start:
Before you start you will need to create some favicons / images in the size you want, in order for the module to display them once it's set up - if you don't want to / can't make them yourself then you can download some placement images from our BIS Downloads Directory that I have made for this purpose.
You will also need to have the URL of your Advertising Overview or purchasing page handy too, as you will need to insert it into each of the mini-ads (so that when someone clicks on one they will go to the page & hopefully purchase....)
Step 1 - Set up a new "Mini-Ads" zone in Ad Agency.
The number of rows & columns will need to be decided by you, & is set according to your template & the position you choose for it etc, but with a bit of experimentation you should be able to make it look nice.
TIP: If you intend to display the on Mini-Ads on multiple areas of your site you might wish to create multiple Mini-Ad zones & then price them separately (ie: A Mini-Ad on our Homepage would be priced far differently than one on a less-visited page....). Another advantage of using multiple modules is that you may need / want more or less columns / rows on some pages....
Below: Image #1 - Zones Manager
Below: Image #2 - Edit Zones Screenshot
Below: Image #3 - Closeup of Zones configuration
Step 2 - Create an account for YOURSELF
- You will need an account in order to upload & display the placeholder images.
Below: Image #4 - Advertisers Manager screenshot
TIP: Your campaign needs to be set for a VERY long period (ie: 100 years) to ensure it doesn't expire & so that you don't have to worry about it again once it's set up.
Below: Image #5 - Campaigns Manager screenshot
Step 4 - Activate the module
- If you are working on a live site you can set the module to display only to Super-Admins until you are happy with it.
- It is also a good idea to see how it looks after uploading the first placement image in case you need to make any adjustment to the module settings OR to your mini-ad image settings such as borders, padding etc.
Step 5 - Upload the placeholder images one-by-one, assigning them to the new Mini-Ad Zone
TIP: You will need to ensure ALL mini-ads have the same configuration - otherwise they will not display nicely. (I have found that a 2px buffer (padding) around the images & no border works quite well for the standard 32x32 pixel Mini-Ads....another tip is that you will need to set the alignment to "Center" - and also remember to make sure that all your clients / customers follow your same settings for their mini-ads..... )
Below: Image #6 - Adding a mini ad - closeup view
Step 6 - Begin selling your Mini-Ads via Ad Agency!
Finally, don't forget that you will need to write up some instructions for your customers / clients so that they know how to configure their Mini-Ads to your exact specifications (IE: Dimensions, File Format allowed, Maximum File size allowed, what the padding MUST be, the alignment setting (centered or left/right), whether or not you want to allow a border etc)
IMPORTANT! - BE AWARE THAT EVERY mini-ad must be configured exactly in the same way to keep the rows / columns all aligned nicely so you need to ensure your clients can easily follow your wishes.
Learn more about iJoomla's Ad Agency:
To learn more about iJoomla's Ad Agency (component, modules & plugins for Joomla CMS) you can read about it via the iJoomla Ad Agency listing in BIS Downloads Directory or watch a video one of the videos below (or find more videos in the "Joomla Extensions" section of our BIS Video Library).
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