Other templates for Zen Cart

Changing the appearance of your cart by using a new template

The base template is Zen Cart is called template_default.

classic is a sample custom template. You can create your own custom templates; classic is just an example. Anything that’s not in your custom template but exists in template_default will be automatically loaded from template_default for you. Thus, when you’re building a custom template, all you need in your custom template folder are the files/folders that you’ve customized/changed/added. Everything else is taken from the default files.

responsive_classic is another sample custom template, but it is more modern than classic. It was designed to be responsive, which is a way of saying that it works on mobile devices. When the classic template was created, there were no mobile devices, so that wasn’t a concern.

Contributed responsive templates which you can use with your Zen Cart may be found in the Responsive Templates sections in the Zen Cart Plugins Directory.

For reference, you can also view and Legacy Templates, but bear in mind that you will want your final template to be responsive (to look good on mobile devices).

See the other FAQs on the template system and overrides for more information.

Responsive Classic Template - Product Page (Desktop)

Responsive Classic Template Product Page on Desktop

Responsive Classic Template - Product Page (Mobile)

Responsive Classic Template Product Page on Mobile

Another well supported option is the Bootstrap template.

Bootstrap Template - Product Page (Desktop)

Bootstrap Template Product Page on Desktop

Bootstrap Template - Product Page (Mobile)

Bootstrap Template Product Page on Mobile

Commercial Templates

There are software vendors who sell templates for Zen Cart. Many of them are extremely visually attractive. But exercise caution!

  • Some of these templates were built for WordPress, not Zen Cart, so they don’t respect configuration settings and are much harder to work on.
  • Some of these templates were built under PHP 5.6 and need extensive fixing before they can run error-free under current versions of PHP.
  • Some of these templates were built for much older versions of Zen Cart, and haven’t been upgraded.
  • Some of these templates will use PHP short “open” tags, which are deprecated and scheduled for removal from PHP.
  • Some of these templates include old versions of JavaScript libraries, which must be updated.
  • Some of these templates remove large pieces of core code functionality to simplify the template builder’s job (because they don’t take the time to learn all the things Zen Cart can do with its various configuration switches or product features), which means that things you would expect to work do not.

Be sure to discuss these issues with your template provider and make the transaction with an awareness of what you are taking on.
Don’t be afraid to get them to put in writing whether they have tested the template’s functionality with all of Zen Cart’s features, and whether they will support you if things “break” when you change Zen Cart configuration settings.




Still have questions? Use the Search box in the upper right, or try the full list of FAQs. If you can't find it there, head over to the Zen Cart support forum and ask there in the appropriate subforum. In your post, please include your Zen Cart and PHP versions, and a link to your site.

Is there an error or omission on this page? Please post to General Questions on the support forum. Or, if you'd like to open a pull request, just review the guidelines and get started. You can even PR right here.
Last modified March 31, 2021 by Chris Brown (b2d62d8).