I'm about to give up on this Classifieds Plugin

Guys, this classifieds plugin is an embarrassment. Really.

I could spend the next 3 hours writing a novel about how terrible this plugin is after spending hours and hours trying to get it to work and look good on the site. You had an out-of-box bug that displayed "Classifieds" as the post title in sidebar widgets (which you already patched for me but I haven't seen an official patch). I can't find a single example of somebody actually using this plugin successfully.

Go to http://www.floridanewsflash.com/classified-categories/

You'll see what happens to your category grid when you have more than 3 subcategories in any category. By the way, we have 12 main categories and a ton of subcategories.

When I entered all of the main categories and subcategories and viewed the page, the entire grid disappeared. So I removed the subcategories and only 8 of the 12 main categories show up. I began adding in subcategories to "Community" one at a time, and after 4 subcategories, the grid layout falls apart with 4 columns at the top, 3 columns (col 2, 3, and 4) in the 2nd row, and the last grid box showing up by itself in column 1 of row 2.

After adding the rest of the Community subcategories and a couple of For Sale subcategories, the grid looks like it does now.

There are other major layout issues as well with this plugin. We've had to spend hours and hours trying to figure out and write our own CSS to make the displays look like something that wasn't a bunch of overlapping HTML table cells. Terrible, really.

How did the screenshots on the plugin page get done? Because out of the box, this plugin does not display anything remotely like what I see in the screenshots.

Go over the Classifieds pages and see for yourself. I gave you support access through the WPMU DEV dashboard.

  • Vinod Dalvi

    Hi Sam,

    Sorry to hear of the problem you are having.

    I visited your shared page http://www.floridanewsflash.com/classified-categories/ but didn't find any major issue there as shown in the attached screenshot. I can see unorder list bullets are displayed there which you can hide by adding the following CSS code in the style.css file of your child theme or add it in your site using the following plugin.

    https://wordpress.org/plugins/simple-custom-css/

    #cf_list_categories ul li {
      list-style: none;
    }
    ul.cf_tabs li {
      list-style: none;
    }

    If the number of subcategories are more then the height of that box increases to contain them which results in reducing the number of category boxes displayed on subsequent rows.

    Could you please tell me how you want it to display and tell me other issues of the plugin by sharing the page URLs if i have missed it so that i can help you to resolve it?

    Kind Regards,
    Vinod Dalvi

  • Sam

    Obviously, you didn't read the problem.

    We have 12 top level categories. We expect ALL of them to display. We want to create any number of subcategories, and we want ALL of them to display. The grid should be a flexible flow layout, don't you think? It shouldn't matter how many top level categories or subcategories we have.

    With no subcategories at all, only 8 of the 12 categories display (4 columns, 2 rows).

    Once you start adding subcategories, the number of top level categories starts to decrease. In the screenshot, it only shows 6 of the 12. Before I added the subcategories, 8 of the 12 displayed.

    So specifically, as I stated in my initial email, we should see all of our categories and subcategories.

    Secondly, I've provided screenshots to show how your plugin page represents the way the listings page and individual ad pages should look. They are not even remotely close. I had to make major changes already to the CSS just to make them look at least halfway decent. Out of the box, the table on the /classifieds/ page had text overlapping from column one into column two. If you want me to remove my custom CSS so you can see what it looked like BEFORE I did what I did to fix it, I'll have to do it on a staging site, but that will take me a few days to get to. Trust me when I tell you that out of the box the layouts are not good.

    So, yes, my client who is paying me to integrate and implement this plugin would like it to at least look somewhat similar to the way it looks in your screenshots. We understand fonts, font sizes, colors, etc. would be theme specific, but the basic layouts of the /classifieds/ page and the individual classifieds should resemble what your company represents them to be.

  • Vinod Dalvi

    Hi Sam,

    Sorry for the misunderstanding.

    Let's resolve the issue one by one.

    So specifically, as I stated in my initial email, we should see all of our categories and subcategories.

    Actually the shortcode cf_list_categories displays the number of categories that you set in the "Count of categories:" option of Classifieds plugin settings on the following path as shown in the attached screenshot.

    Admin Area -> Classifieds -> Settings -> General -> Display Options

    Currently you had set this count to 16 so it was displaying 16 categories on the page including subcategories.

    I have increased this count to display all categories and subcategories which seems working fine now.

    Could you please check it and let me know how it displays for you now?

    Edit : I have tested it on my test site using latest version of Classifieds plugin and found the "Count of categories:" option only controls the top level categories and not subcategories.

    It seems the support staff access is revoked on your site so could you please regrant it so that we can troubleshoot it?

    Best Regards,
    Vinod Dalvi

  • Sam

    OK it is displaying all of the categories now. Thank you.

    The "Count of Categories" entry should explicitly state that this number is the total of all categories and sub-categories. It doesn't mention subcategories at all. That's either a bug (it should control the number of top-level categories not including subcategories) or it should be better defined as:

    Count of Categories and Subcategories <input> the total number of categories including subcategories that will be displayed in the list of categories.

    But I suspect it's a bug, and you should bring this to the attention of your development team. Why do I say this? Because I had the Category count set to 16, and the Subcategory count set to 20. If you look at the screenshot in my previous post and count the categories and subcategories, the top level category count is 5, but the total count of all categories and subcategories is 20. Based on what you are saying, since I had it set to 16, the total of all categories and subcategories should be 16, not 20.

    Regardless, this is a good workaround for now. I will go back and populate all of the subcategories that the client requested and see how the grid lays out.

    QUESTION: Can you please tell me where the function/loop is (which php file) that renders this grid? I tried finding it using WP IDE but wasn't able to.

    Thanks!

  • Sam

    OK Thanks.

    I made a bunch of CSS changes to the display of the Classifieds archive pages, the individual listings pages, and the Classifieds Grid. For the Classifieds Grid, once I was able to get them all to display (thanks for the 9999 setting) I then changed the names to use numbers to control the order that they are rendered, preventing any big "holes" in the grid because of differences in the number of subcategories.

    Thanks for all your help.

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