First of all - Hello Shopify World! I've just recently signed up for shopify and will building a food-based shop over the next couple of weeks - looking forwards to getting stuck in!
One of my requirements that I'm not entirely sure about is the best way to accomplish "vendor/producer pages". The idea is that all the products we're selling come from a number of producers, and we need to have a specific page for each producer that contains a bio (description and image) of the producer, and then a list of all the products offered by the producer.
The easiest way I can think of doing this is to create a "page" for each producer, and in the underlying page template add some logic that will get all the products tagged to producer X. But, I can see a number of issues here:
Hope that makes sense. Maybe theres an easier way to do this? I was looking at the "Private Applications", I'm a developer so coding is fine, but I don't think these would help me...
You're thinking this out in all the hard ways :)
Use smart collections based on the product.vendor field that is used when entering a product. The smart collection will grab all of their products. In each collection you have a collection description area that you can put all the relevant information for each producer in. If that's not enough you can (if you choose) make an alternate collection template for each smart "producer" collection.
Have you read the wiki on smart collections?: http://wiki.shopify.com/Help:Collections#Smart_collections