Custom Printable PDF Creator Plugin for WooCommerce

Challenge

Our client wanted a printable PDF product creator plugin. They wanted the admin to be able to upload an image and place text fields or dropdowns over it. They wanted to save it as a new product so that users can fill out those fields and make a printable version of the product with their customizations.

Our task mainly was to:

  • Implement a creation process of PDF templates as admin
  • Saving PDF templates as a custom product type
  • Make sure users can change the field values and generate PDFs for printing
  • Keep the user made design and inputs for reordering later
  • Make sure to abide by client restrictions

Our Solution

The project had some integrations to do and strict guidelines to take note of.

Here’s how we solved the problem:

Creation as Admin

Client wanted an interface for the admins to create the custom products as templates. They wanted the ability to upload a 300 dpi image within the interface and place text field or dropdowns on the image. We have used standard WP Media structure, but used a custom image uploader so that the process is smoother to use.

PDF Templates

The designs made by admins should be stored as product template. These will be used later on frontend. We have implemented a custom template for these products. These products are shown later on using the templates.

Frontend Feature

On frontend, client wanted to give users the ability to fill up the fields created earlier by admins. Users can fill up the field values are they want and then generate a printable PDF that he can print. We have used TCPDF for generating the PDF.

 

Store Customizations

The customizations made by the user should be stored, so that the user can re-order the design when needed. We have added a serialized meta with the customization values to cart. The data eventually gets added to the order, to be re-ordered if needed.

Client Restrictions

Client wanted our plugin to follow MVC structure and to keep frontend code seperate from the logic. They also wanted that we use TCPDF as our PDF generator library. We followed these guidelines when coding the plugin.

Putting it all together

When we finished, we delivered an automated system of custom products that can generate customized printable PDFs with the specifications from client. It simlified the process of getting and managing custom orders through WooCommerce.

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