osCommerce and Template Monster

Almost every day, there is someone in the official osCommerce Forum who is moaning about how they bought a pre-made osCommerce template from Template Monster.

Template Monster have loads of osCommerce designs available, but 99% of them are based on outdated osCommerce code.  The outsourced programmers used by Template Monster to integrate the designs have usually made lots of mistakes, many small mistakes, some big mistakes.

Heck, I’ve seen Templates that have hardcoded links rather than using the usual tep_href – so sessions can’t be carried throughout the shop. That might sound like no big deal to you, but I assure you, it IS a big deal.  Smaller mistakes like hard-coded language settings are not such a big deal – but can still cause problems for multi-language shops.

Just recently I installed a TM template for a client of mine – it actually turned out to be not very problematic.  On closer inspection, the underlying code was found to be very poor – I spent at least 5 hours solidly cleaning the code up.

I’d suggest to anyone thinking of buying a osCommerce Template Monster that it shuld should be used as a starting point.

Buy the template, find a good osCommerce developer, and pay that developer to PROPERLY integrate the LOOK of the template, making sure that the developer uses correct osCommerce coding practices.

Yes, this might be expensive, but it will save you a lot of headaches long term.

So, when all that is said and done, shuld you use Template Monster?  I say yes, why not – but only if you are aware that the template will most likely be poorly coded by someone who knows very little about osCommerce.  You’ll also need to be aware that you will get hardly any help in the official osCommerce Forum – as no help is given for 3rd party products.

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