The big picture: Who are users?
Users are people who have registered their details with you and are allocated access to certain resources and information, depending on their role within the scope of your website. They can be administrators and content editors/contributors or customers who purchase goods and services from you.
This is different to a casual visitor who lands up at the frontend of your site because he/she has your website address or hopefully has found you through a search engine. You may be able to turn these casual visitors into registered users if you have something to offer them. Say you want to provide special content to only those who are genuinely interested in your services or products. Encouraging them to register allows you to collect contact information (it’s best to ask only for the most relevant details, as people generally don’t want to give out more than they need to) and keep in touch. Hopefully, you can convert it into an ongoing relationship with sales and benefits for your business. Generating interest in your products and services is important here and suggesting some level of exclusivity can make your customers feel privileged in terms of being privy to information not readily available to just anyone.
Put simply though, users are your website visitors, content contributors, and administrators. Depending on their role, they are essentially divided into two broad groups with smaller sub-categories within them.
Frontend users do not have access to the administration interface and can only access material and information through the frontend. They can be:
- Registered users, authors, editors, and publishers who have privileges to edit and update information.
- Guests or casual visitors to your site. These visitors come to your site anonymously and unregistered.
- People who register their details in order to transact with you.
Frontend user definitions
When a user is registered with you, they are allocated to a group, as per the settings applied within the Global Configuration.
They can be any one of the following:
- Registered Users are visitors to your site who have registered themselves in order to view certain content or transact with you.
- Authors can submit new content articles to the site with approval, but can’t edit existing articles. A publisher or someone higher must approve these submissions.
- Editors can submit and edit new content articles. A publisher or someone higher must also approve these entries.
- Publishers can submit new content articles, edit existing articles, and publish the articles.
None of these user groups have access to the administration interface, and can only edit or add material from the frontend.
Administration users can edit and update the content of your site by logging into the administration control panel and are those who:
- Have Administrator Manager or Super Administrator access. Each of these roles has specific access. For example, the Manager profile does not have access to the User Manager section.
- Have various levels of access within the administration control panel, the highest level being Super Administrator.
Editing the frontend Login Form
From the frontend of your website, the Login Form allows users to access content that is potentially specialized and only visible to them, or to transact with you if you’re running an e-commerce site. You can also customize your Login Form by adding text and a link to create new accounts.
Lost usernames and passwords
The Forgot your password and Forgot your username links are important not only for users to fi nd their password or username again, but also to help you to manage users. Rather than unnecessarily creating a new account if they have lost their login details, having an e-mail prompt sent to reset their details is a more efficient approach.
Clicking the link for either will generate a request to enter an e-mail address. A confi rmation e-mail will be sent with a verification token or string of characters which allows the user to enter and reset their password. Alternatively, their username will be emailed to them.