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Understanding line items

From: Create Your First Online Store with Drupal Commerce

Video: Understanding line items

When you go into a store to buy something, you are product-centric. You are looking for a particular thing, and you don't care much about what happens behind the scene, but when you're running the store, you start looking at the bigger picture. The thing that you sell is part of an order, and that order has to be tracked in inventory. Line items are an important part of the order and inventory system. Here is how it works. An order comprises a list of products that the customer has purchased. You see those here as Product 1 and Product 2.

Understanding line items

When you go into a store to buy something, you are product-centric. You are looking for a particular thing, and you don't care much about what happens behind the scene, but when you're running the store, you start looking at the bigger picture. The thing that you sell is part of an order, and that order has to be tracked in inventory. Line items are an important part of the order and inventory system. Here is how it works. An order comprises a list of products that the customer has purchased. You see those here as Product 1 and Product 2.

Those each have a price, and for each one of those, the customer can buy a number of them: the quantity. The price gets multiplied by the quantity, and you get the total amount for that product. Products can also have a negative price. For example, if you give a refund, shown here as -$5. Or they could have no price at all if it's a gift, or some other kind of giveaway. All of those items add up to a subtotal, and then you put on additional charges, such as shipping and tax. The things that are at the top of the screen here, before you add the shipping, and tax, and other additional charges, are known as line items.

The things that come after the subtotal are not line items; in this case, shipping, and tax. However, orders don't have to work exactly this way. Here is another example. We have all of our products at the top, and they are line items. But then again, we also have the shipping item as a line item. This would be the case if it was flat rate shipping, for example. We know that no matter what, it's going to cost 6 dollars. In some order systems, the amount of shipping changes depending on the total of the line items, and in that case, shipping itself is not considered a line item, because it's variable.

Tax, however, is not considered a line item in this example, because it is variable; it's a percentage based on the total amount of the line items before. You will also notice that not every line item is necessarily taxable. We have added up the amounts of the order, and that comes to $40; 10% of that is our $4 tax. We didn't charge tax on the shipping. Now let's take a look at how line items work in a Drupal Commerce store. Since we haven't set up any shipping methods yet, our order is going to be very simple. We will start by putting an item in the cart.

Let's just get us some Lip balm, and go and take a look at the cart. When we look at the cart, we see only the line items. We have created a tax rule in a previous video, but we don't see it here until we go to Checkout. Now we see our line items, and then we have our tax after it. Now, line items are unusual in Drupal Commerce in that you can't create them. They are, instead, created by modules that you install, such as the commerce shipping module I will show you later in the course. I'll show you what I mean. If we go up to Store, Configuration, and Taxes, we see that Tax Rate that we added earlier, and in fact, there is a link here to add a tax rate.

However, Drupal Commerce also keeps track of all of the line items, and if we go back up to Configure store here, and then down to Line item types. However, we don't have an add link up here. Instead, these line item types appear as you add modules, or enable modules, in your Drupal Commerce store. As Drupal Commerce matures, I expect we'll see some interesting definitions of what line items are. As always, drupalcommerce.org is where you can find out about these developments.

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This video is part of

Image for Create Your First Online Store with Drupal Commerce
Create Your First Online Store with Drupal Commerce

35 video lessons · 10863 viewers

Tom Geller
Author

 
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  1. 16m 44s
    1. Welcome
      54s
    2. Previewing the finished project
      4m 10s
    3. Surveying the store-building process
      4m 29s
    4. Using the exercise files
      7m 11s
  2. 12m 12s
    1. Installing Drupal Commerce using Commerce Kickstart
      6m 5s
    2. Configuring your store's basic information
      6m 7s
  3. 31m 29s
    1. Accepting PayPal payments
      5m 9s
    2. Setting up individual products
      3m 17s
    3. Displaying products
      6m 30s
    4. Categorizing products
      5m 31s
    5. Adding simple taxes
      4m 39s
    6. Seeing your site from the customer's viewpoint
      3m 26s
    7. Processing orders
      2m 57s
  4. 17m 39s
    1. Understanding products and other entities
      3m 3s
    2. Understanding line items
      3m 16s
    3. Understanding rules
      5m 10s
    4. Integrating your store into a Drupal site
      6m 10s
  5. 29m 46s
    1. Adding product variations
      7m 2s
    2. Managing product variations
      3m 50s
    3. Importing simple products
      10m 11s
    4. Importing complicated products
      8m 43s
  6. 29m 52s
    1. Shipping products
      4m 50s
    2. Managing inventory
      4m 30s
    3. Managing orders
      5m 39s
    4. Managing customer profiles
      4m 55s
    5. Using Views to gain better oversight
      5m 0s
    6. Accepting other payment methods
      4m 58s
  7. 24m 52s
    1. Changing your store's look
      6m 24s
    2. Streamlining the checkout process
      5m 19s
    3. Launching your store
      13m 9s
  8. 29m 25s
    1. Offering product discounts
      8m 56s
    2. Gaining insight from Google Analytics
      5m 45s
    3. Making your site more visible to search engines (SEO)
      5m 52s
    4. Encouraging customer buzz
      8m 52s
  9. 56s
    1. Goodbye
      56s

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