I would like a product detail page that doesn't follow the typical layout of a PDP in my store. I've tried changing content with custom templates but this requires a code change - is there any way to do this from the CMS?
This is entirely possible!
The easiest way to do this is to remove the content with Custom Layout XML and then replace that with the contents of a static block.
<remove name="content"> <reference name="root"> <block type="cms/block" name="my.custom.block" before="footer"> <action method="setBlockId"><block_id>your_block_id</block_id></action> </block> </reference>