Beginner’s Guide on Magento Product Attribute Sets

Beginner’s Guide on Magento Product Attribute Sets

Those who are new with Magento come up with a great bunch of questions. We start our FAQ section with introducing to you a Beginner’s Guide on Magento Product Attribute Sets. Read on to get all the details about their types and modification.

What is Magento Product Attribute?

Magento provides you with a flexible functionality to set properties to each product in a catalog. Using Magento product attributes you can set such product features as color, size, width, height, etc. Generally any information that makes the product unique can be displayed using product attributes. Based on the catalog and product structure, it is possible to use one of the following attribute types:

1. Text Field

2. Text Area

3. Date

4. Yes/No

5. Multiple Select

6. Dropdown

7. Price

8. Media Image

9. Fixed Product Tax

By default Magento provides a list of 66 product attributes. It is possible to change properties of existing attributes, except “Catalog Input Type for Store Owner” option. If there is a necessity to change this option, a new product attribute should be created. Magento product attributes can be used not only to show the individual characteristics but as a tool for navigation to filter products in the catalog. It should be noted that only the following attributes can be used in layered navigation: Multiple Select, Dropdown and Price.

What is Magento attribute set?

Attribute set is a list of certain individual Magento product attributes, which fully describe all product’s characteristics. Attribute set is used during every new product creation. This step lets one add all import information about the product in one step. By default, Magento includes 14 attribute sets. Every single set is a combination of specific attributes.

Let’s review an example of an attribute set which is installed together with Magento named “Cell Phones”.

To access Magento attribute set grid, follow the path: Catalog >> Attributes >> Manage Attribute Sets

Here is a list of existing attribute sets:

Attribute sets grid

When clicking to any Magento attribute set a configuration page is opened:

Attribute set configuration

The configuration page is divided into 3 sections:

1. Set Name – for internal use

2. Attribute Groups – a combination of attributes that are related to each other. For example, group “Prices” combines all attributes related to product prices, such as “price”, “special prices”, “cost”, etc.

3. Unassigned attributes – attributes which are not used in a current set but can be included by drag-and-drop from “Unassigned attributes” column to any group”

As mentioned above, it is possible to move an attribute from unassigned to a group. If there is no any group suitable for the set, it is possible to add a new by clicking “Add New” button. A new group will be appear at the bottom of the list.

If an attribute should be removed from a set, it can be done the same way as adding in reverse, it means by moving the attribute from “Group” to “Unassigned” column.

How to combine product attributes into Magento attribute set?

As we have already mentioned above, product attributes allow to set individual characteristics for product. It is very convenient to divide products into groups and create Magento attribute set, which will contain all necessary attributes related to products.

Let’s check how a new attribute set can be created, following the path from paragraph above, visit attribute sets’ grid and click “Add New Set”:

Create new attribute set

The first step requires selecting a template based on which a new attribute set will be created. It means that all attributes with the same “Groups” structure will be included into a new set. Based on the way Magento was installed, a starting available attribute sets will be installed. For example, if sample data was installed during Magento installation, such sets as Camera, Cell Phones, CPU, etc. will also be installed. When a new set was created an admin can change the list of attribute in a usual way.

How to change Magento product attribute set if a product has been already created?

Native Magento functionality doesn’t allow to change the attribute set when the product has been created. That’s why it is necessary to plan product structure correctly to avoid possible issues related to attribute set. It is possible only to add or delete attributes inside the set, but it is impossible to fully change Magento attribute set from “Set 1” to “Set 2”. Nevertheless, there is a way to replace the set for simple products.  By adding a new Magento mass action “Change Attribute Set” which is being installed together will Mass Product Actions. In addition to all new actions such as Update Price, Assign/Remove Category, creation of product relations, the extension provides an easy way to swap Magento attribute set.

Mass product actions

This action can be done right from the product grid and can be applied to as many simple products as you need.

Following just a few simple steps product set will be changed, let’s check it:

1. Catalog >> Manage Products >> Select “Simple Product” (to which the action will be applied).

2. Open action drop-down and find a new “Change Attribute Set” action.

3. When the action will be changed, a new drop-down with the list of all existing sets will be appeared and any set can be selected.

4. By clicking to “Submit” button the action will be done.

Vitaly Kolukshev

Vitaly Kolukshev

Vitaly is passionate about text information, he is usually the person who answers your support tickets. He knows the value for the right information placed in the right time and in the right place. Vitaly is keen on active sports such as skating in winter and roller skating in summer.

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15 Responses

  1. Oleksandr says:

    Hi!
    Please suggest: if an attribute set assigned to the list of products (instead of default) has been deleted – is it normal if the products also disappeared? Are there any solutions to retrieve them back (I don’t have backup).
    Thank you in advance.

    • Ksenia Dobreva Ksenia Dobreva says:

      Hi Oleksandr,
      unfortunately, yes, this is normal. And the products are physically deleted from the database, so I’m afraid there’ no opportunity to retrieve them. Sorry.

  2. Alice Bryony says:

    Yes i agree with you. I think its also important to have custom field’s option for you because with the help of custom fields you can get extra information from your customers for future survey etc. purpose.

  3. Ben says:

    Hi Amasty, I’m in the situation where I have 1000 products loaded with a large number of attributes with type DropDown and I want to make them filterable by the slider in your Layered Nav extension. So I need to change the attribute types to Price. Do you think I can do that by deleting the dropdown attribute and adding back a new Price attribute with the same name, without screwing up the site?
    Cheers!
    BTW – your extension is great. Saved us heaps of development.

    • Ksenia Dobreva Ksenia Dobreva says:

      Hey Ben, very glad to see you as a customer!

      Thanks for stopping by and asking.

      Yes, we recommend to create a price-type attribute first, then import values and see if everything goes smoothly. If so, feel free to delete the old dropdown-type attribute.
      Please let me know if that helps.

      Cheers!

  4. Kienan says:

    Hello!

    I have the Mass Product Actions installed so I am having no issues changing the attribute sets of a “Simple Product.” Is there any way to be able to switch the attribute set for a “Configurable Product” without having to delete it and then re-creating the same product with the necessary attributes?

    Looking forward to hearing back. Thanks!

    • Ksenia Dobreva Ksenia Dobreva says:

      Hi Kienan,

      unfortunately, you can’t change the attribute set for a configurable product after it’s created. Hope that helps!

  5. Sandro says:

    Hello, Thanks for the information. I will be very gratefull to you if you show me or send any link where i can see how to add an attribute on homepage .
    Thanks.

  6. Alexandra says:

    Hello, I have a problem. i have a category with multiple subcategories and in those subcategories i have products. I made a attribute(size help) and a script that select the subcategories that i want to have this attribute. My problem it’s now that a product has that attribute, another product doesn’t from the same subcategory. Does anyone knows why?
    thank you 😀

    • Ksenia Dobreva Ksenia Dobreva says:

      Hello Alexandra, the attributes are collected into attribute sets, and products are created with pointing out an attribute set. Maybe your category has products with various attribute sets?

  7. akash poot pandey says:

    Hello, Thanks for the information. I will be very gratefull to you if you show me or send any link where i can see how to solve problem shown below:-
    1.Cannot gather stats! Warning!stat(): stat failed for C:/xampp/htdocs/bnd/pub/media/catalog/product/m/b/mb04-black-0.jpg
    2.And some time when i add a product ,a message shows that product has been saved but when i search it in product>catalog i don’t find any.
    please help me.
    thank you :)

    • Ksenia Dobreva Ksenia Dobreva says:

      Hey there and thanks for your question. Looks like you’re using Windows here, and from our experience, Magento can have certain issues on Windows environment. For example, some PHP functions for working with files are performing in a different way on Windows, and that’s why one can’t guarantee 100% stability here. As for your described issues, I’m sorry, but looks we didn’t meet any of them and can’t help you here remotely. Good luck!

  8. store-team says:

    Hello…
    Since speed is one of the main problem in magneto no doubts with solution.. my Question is does is effect on performance if create more attributes or attributes set or based on chose of data types attributes ?

    Thanks

    • Ksenia Dobreva Ksenia Dobreva says:

      Hello there,

      in general, any entities you create within Magento influence performance. And attributes and attribute sets do this as well. But in reality the influence of a single entity is really small, and you start seeing performance issues only on a very big scale (tens of thousands of attributes, for example). If you’re seeing significant performance issues on a relatitvely small number of attributes or attribute sets, it’s not normal and should be investigated. Hope that answers your question.

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