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Smart Subscriptions component sends email notifications to users and site administrator if a subscription is created or updated. The notification being sent depends on the event (the action on a subscription or payment). Email HTML templates used for notifications generation are stored in /administrator/helpers/emailtpl/ folder (admin/helpers/emailtpl in installation package zip file). Individual templates must be defined for each of the supported languages and placed into <lang-tag> subfolder (e.g. /administrator/helpers/emailtpl/en-GB for english).

If language-specific email template is not found for the current site language, en-GB will be used as a fallback. There is also a special folder for email template overrides: /administrator/helpers/emailtpl/overrides, it should have the similar structure as the main emailtmpl folder, i.e. have subfolders for each of the installed languages. When a notification is generated the script looks first in /overrides folder for a template required and loads it if found, otherwise a built-in template is used. You can leave "overrides" folder empty or override some of the templates only.

Types, template file names and descriptions are listed in the table below:

 Administrator  admin.php  Subscription created by administrator in Joomla User manager
 Sign up  signup.php  New user registration and subscription assignment / pre-order
 Upgrade  upgrade.php  Existing user subscription renewal / upgrade / downgrade
 Modofication  status.php  Subscription status changed by administrator (e.g. set as paid for offline payment methods)
 Pre-access  preaccess.php  A free temporal account notice, for new registrations and when the payment is not online (the order has to be confirmed by administrator)
 Reset  reset.php  Reset to a free account notification, in case when current subscription expires or is suspended by administrator
 Bank transfer  offline.php  Data needed for bank transfer
Expires soon expires.php  Notification sent by cron task when account can be renewed with discount - "expires soon" (cron support will be added in v1.2.6)
Expired expired.php  Notification sent by cron task when account has already expired (cron support will be added in v1.2.6)


Smart Subscriptions component sends HTML emails. Starting from version 1.2.6 common email markup is extracted from email templates and moved to /administrator/helpers/emailtpl/layout.php file. This file is language-independent and is used for all events and languages. If you wish to override default layout, create layout.php file in /administrator/helpers/emailtpl/overrides folder. Do not forget to include {%content} placeholder somewhere in layout file - this placeholder will be substituted by actual email template contents depending on the event and language.

If you override an email template, please, keep in mind that:

  • No PHP code can be inserted into HTML. A PHP section is located on the top of the file and is stripped out from the resulting HTML before the email is sent. '?>' PHP closing tag is used as a delimiter, so HTML body cannot contain '?>' sequence
  • You can place comments to your template override as PHP comments (before PHP closing tag)
  • You can use ''COM_SMARTSUB_EMAIL_<custom_key>" in HTML where <custom_key> is replaced by a unique string ID (A-Z, 0-9 and '_' characters allowed). Do not forget to add resulting language keys to translation file(s)
  • Special "{%data_key}" placeholders are used in HTML template and will be replaced by the real data on the fly. For data keys meaning see comments to SmartsubHelper::processEmailTpl(...) method in smartsub.php hepler script

Images in notification emails

There are special data keys supported in email templates: {%logo_image_url}, {%header_image_url}, {%footer_image_url}. They should be used as "scr" attribute in <img /> elements. Built-in templates propose these images for use as:

  • {%header_image_url} - 100% wide banner image on top
  • {%footer_image_url} - 100% wide banner image at bottom
  • {%logo_image_url} - small image within email text flow

If you override email template(s) feel free to change images position, size and style. Important note: Images will not be rendered at all if they are not defined in Smart Subscriptions global component settings.