eCommerce Platform Updates
|5/13/2013||Clear Cart Contents Button - The cart now supports a "clear cart" (also known as "empty cart") button associated with the "Total" line.|
|4/26/2013||Order/Affiliate Addendum: Additional Replacement Keywords - Utilize additional address-based fields in the for integration with third-party services via the Order/Affiliate Addendum|
|4/26/2013||Dashboard Plus iOS App - Remain up to date your latest business statistics with your iPhone or iPad|
|4/18/2013||Gift Certificates as Products - Allow purchase of a gift certificate as if it were a product, along with other products and fulfillment types|
|4/5/2013||Order Export and XML OrderQuery: ISBN, MPN, and UPC - Access ISBN, MPN, and UPC at the Line Item level in the Order Export and XML OrderQuery|
|4/1/2013||Browser Information Capture - View Browser Name, Browser Version, Platform Name, and Platform Version for orders placed in your Online Store|
|3/27/2013||Share Payments with Customers - Allow customers to see the dates and amounts of charges to their credit cards|
|3/8/2013||Line Item Search: Fill Date - Search for orders based on the Ship Date or Pickup Date at the line item level|
|3/7/2013||Order Report Enhancements - Identify uncaptured credit cards, and obtain Order and Billing Status, via the Order Report|
|3/6/2013||Coupon Enhancements: Discount Application and Additional Purchase Quantity - Apply Coupon Discounts to the least expensive qualifying product, and set a threshold quantity for Additional Purchase Required|
|2/28/2013||Generate Alphanumeric Passwords - Ensure that automatically generated customer passwords contain only letters and numbers|
|1/30/2013||ShipCompliant Sales Tax Integration - Integration with ShipCompliant's sales tax services.|
|1/9/2013||Shipped E-Mail BCC - Blind carbon copy users in the Order Management System on Shipped E-Mails|
|1/8/2013||No Attribute Default Selection - Require customers to actively select a value for every attribute before adding a product to the Shopping Cart|
|1/8/2013||Pickup Orders - Allow customers to purchase products for pickup as well as shipment|
|12/31/2012||Coupon Application: Multiple Shipping Methods - Apply a coupon to up to 4 shipping methods|
|12/31/2012||Products and Categories: Unavailable Option - Customize the action taken when a customer attempts to access an unavailable product or category|
|12/11/2012||Maximum Ship Tos - Enforce a maximum number of Ship-To Addresses per order in the Online Store|
|12/6/2012||Users: Limit Visibility to Ownership - For selected User Access Levels, limit the visibility of orders and customers to those owned by the user|
|11/16/2012||Policy URLs - Link directly to your privacy, Shipping, and Return Policies|
|10/17/2012||Customer Integration: Lockdown Options - Lock down Customer Integration against potential abuse from malicious users|
|10/15/2012||Edit Option Order - Sort a product's attribute options to achieve any desired order|
|10/10/2012||Drag and Drop Sort Option - Choose whether or not to use drag and drop functionality to sort categories and products within categories in the Order Management System.|
|9/20/2012||ShipCompliant: AutoSync Shipping Data - Automatically sync shipping data with ShipCompliant each night.|
|9/20/2012||Separate CSS - Call the Style Sheet Addendum in its own file to support the use of CSS Directives|
|9/18/2012||Customer Type CSS Classes - Utilize multiple Advanced Layouts in the Online Store, based on Customer Type|
|9/17/2012||Cart Keeper - Maintain and consolidate a customer's shopping cart across multiple devices and browsers|
|9/17/2012||XML Tools: OrderUpdate Enhancements - Implement additional functionality present in the Order Management System's Edit Order screen via the XML Tools.|
|9/4/2012||Robots.txt Addendum - Add custom statements to the robots.txt file associated with your Domain Alias|
|8/27/2012||Add To Cart Effect - Customize the animation that occurs when your customers add a product to the Shopping Cart.|
|7/26/2012||Invoice Label - Change the term "Invoice", as used in the Online Store and order-related e-mails, to any text of your choosing|
|7/16/2012||Customer Password Preferences - Allow customer passwords to be auto-generated and automatically e-mailed|
|7/6/2012||Persistent Category: Auto Expand - Automatically display all subcategories in the Persistent Category Section of your Online Store|
|6/26/2012||Review Reminder Test - Preview your Review Reminder E-Mails by sending a test e-mail to yourself|
|6/26/2012||Reviews and Questions: Synopsis Options - Show entire reviews and questions, optionally limited to a specified number of characters, on Product Detail screens in the Online Store|
|6/13/2012||XML Tools: SavedCart - Gather information about customers who have placed items in their Shopping Carts but haven't completed the checkout process.|
|6/12/2012||Google Analytics Domain - Specify a domain scope to ensure proper continuity of Google Analytics tracking across domains|
|5/16/2012||E-Mail Layout - Specify layout parameters specifically for automatically generated HTML-format e-mails|
|5/16/2012||Mobile Store - Enable a version of your Online Store designed for the smaller browsers used by smart phones|
|5/1/2012||USPS and Endicia Enhancements - Utilize Adult Signature Required, C.O.D., and other new features offered by USPS and Endicia|
|4/13/2012||Marketplace Options: Exclude from Marketplace - Exclude Certain Products from the Automated Marketplace Feeds|
|4/13/2012||Bulk Order: Use Customer Search Results - Use the results of a customer search as the list of customers eligible for a Bulk Order|
|3/12/2012||Nexternal Twitter Feed - View Nexternal news from Twitter on the Login screen of the Order Management System|
|3/12/2012||.NET Internal Orders - Utilize the Nexternal.NET Online Store technology for orders placed and edited within the Order Management System|
|2/28/2012||ATC Advanced Validation Option - Reduce the client-side code generated for your store by turning off advanced validation for the Add to Cart Button|
|2/27/2012||DocType Declaration - Specify a Custom DocType for use with your Nexternal.NET Online Store|
|2/16/2012||XML Tools: OrderQuery By OrderLineItem - Query Orders by Order Line Item.|
|2/15/2012||Product Sharing Alignment - Control the alignment the Tweet Button, the +1 Button, and the Pin It Button in the Online Store|
|2/6/2012||Pinterest Product Sharing - Allow customers to "pin" products to their Pinterest pinboards via the Pin It Button|
|1/30/2012||MailChimp Integration - Synchronize your customers and affiliates lists to separate MailChimp lists, or export a subset of customers to a list|
|1/30/2012||Mail Wizard Enhancements - Schedule e-mails, e-mail affiliates, and receive completion notifications via the Mail Wizard|
|11/22/2011||Country of Origin - Specify a product's Country of Origin for use with international shipping labels and the Amazon Product Ads feed|
|11/22/2011||Prevent Duplicate E-Mail - Prevent customers from creating multiple accounts with the same e-mail address|
|11/22/2011||Amazon Product Ads and TheFind Marketplace Feeds - Automatically send your products to Amazon Product Ads and TheFind on a daily basis to drive additional traffic to your Online Store|
|11/17/2011||Coupons: Maximum Discount - Cap a Coupon Discount as a specified maximum value|
|11/10/2011||Gift Message Report - Create a printable report of Gift Messages, one per page, custom-styled via HTML|
|11/8/2011||FedEx 2Day A.M. - Utilize real time rates, and create shipping labels, for FedEx 2Day A.M. via FedEx Web Services|
|10/17/2011||Authorize Flat Amount - Perform a credit card authorization of a fixed amount for every order, regardless of the Order Total|
|10/5/2011||Coupons: Discount To - Create a coupon offering a dynamic discount to make the final price after the Coupon Discount equal to a specified amount|
5/13/2013 -- Clear Cart Contents Button
The cart now supports a "clear cart" (a.k.a. "empty cart") button associated with the "Total" line. This button has the same display characteristics as the buttons which delete individual line items, but clears the entire contents of the cart if the invoked confirm dialog receives an OK indication from the purchaser or client. The new button's displayed tool-tip is "Empty Cart". The informational "Delete" button at the top of the cart, if visible, now contains information on the use of the "clear cart" button. There is also a specific CSS class associated with this new button, in case its behavior needs to be customized in some way.
4/26/2013 -- Order/Affiliate Addendum: Additional Replacement Keywords
If you are using the Nexternal.NET Online Store Version (Layout/General Layout in the Order Management System), you may now utilize the following additional Replacement Keywords in the Order/Affiliate Addendum (Settings/Policies, Addenda, and Disclaimers):
- ADDRESS_LABEL: the customer's Contact Address Label.
- COMPANY_NAME: the customer's Contact Company Name.
- ADDRESS1: the customer's Contact Address Line 1.
- ADDRESS2: the customer's Contact Address Line 2.
- ADDRESS_TYPE: the customer's Contact Address Type (Business or Residential).
- PHONE_NUM: the customer's Contact Phone Number.
- PHONE_EXT: the customer's Contact Phone Extension.
- BILL_ADDRESS_LABEL: the Bill To Address Label.
- BILL_COMPANY_NAME: the Bill To Company Name.
- BILL_ADDRESS1: the Bill To Address Line 1.
- BILL_ADDRESS2: the Bill To Address Line 2.
- BILL_ADDRESS_TYPE: the Bill To Address Type (Business or Residential).
- BILL_PHONE_NUM: the Bill To Phone Number.
- BILL_PHONE_EXT: the Bill To Phone Extension.
4/26/2013 -- Dashboard Plus iOS App
The new Dashboard Plus iOS app, available in the iTunes App Store, allows you to access your important sales information anytime, anywhere from your iPhone or iPad. Dashboard Plus includes much of the data found in the Dashboard in the Order Management System, such as top selling products and repeat vs. new customers. You can also set push notifications to get notified every time an order is placed, and much more.
4/18/2013 -- Gift Certificates as Products
If Gift Certificates are enabled and you are using the Nexternal.NET Online Store Version (Layout/General Layout in the Order Management System), Gift Certificates now appear as products in your Online Store. First Name, Last Name, and Personal Message fields are handled as Write-In Attributes. An E-Mail Address is also required, and the amount is handled as a Bid Price.
A Gift Certificate can be added to the Shopping Cart, just as any other product, but with a fixed quantity of one. Gift Certificates for multiple recipients can be ordered simultaneously. If combined with other types of purchases, Gift Certificates are given a separate order number on purchase submission (as happens with shipment and pickup).
The Gift Certificates/Edit Settings screen in the Order Management System has been enhanced to allow the entry of pertinent information for handling Gift Certificates as products, such as a Product Name, Short Description, and Status Message. You may also select the category in which Gift Certificates appear.
4/5/2013 -- Order Export and XML OrderQuery: ISBN, MPN, and UPC
ISBN, MPN, and UPC have been added at the Line Item level in the Excel and Access Order Exports (Orders/Export in the Order Management System), and the OrderQuery XML Tool (Settings/XML Tools). This allows you to more easily interface with external systems that use one or more of those fields to identify products.
4/1/2013 -- Browser Information Capture
Information related to the browser and platform used by the customer is now captured and displayed for orders placed in the Nexternal.NET Online Store and the Nexternal Mobile Online Store. This information includes, to the extent available, Browser Name, Browser Version, Platform Name, and Platform Version (e.g. IE 9 on Windows 6.1). This information is displayed, when available, at the bottom of the Order Detail screen in the Order Management System, in the Excel and Access Order Exports (Orders/Export), and in the OrderQuery XML Tool (Settings/XML Tools).
3/27/2013 -- Share Payments with Customers
If you are using a payment gateway, you may choose to share the dates and amounts of payments charged to a credit card with the relevant order's customer via the new Share Payments with Customers option (Settings/Compatible Software/Payment Gateways/Preferences). This helps to keep the customer informed about charges to his/her credit card, helps the customer reconcile credit card charges with the order placed, and shows the amount remaining to be billed, if any.
If this option is on, any credit card payments for which an amount was captured or refunded appear to the customer as additional lines on the order's invoice. These additional lines appear on the Order Detail screen in the My Account section of the Online Store; on the Order Status page; in Update and Shipped/Sent/Ready E-mails; and, if the Invoice Show Payment option (Settings/Site Options/Invoices and Packing Slips) is on, on Printable Invoices created from the Order Detail screen of the Order Management System, or via the Invoice Report (Orders/Report).
- This option does not expose credit card numbers or any other sensitive information.
- This option has no effect on orders for which no successful capture or refund transactions have occurred.
3/8/2013 -- Line Item Search: Fill Date
The Line Item Search (Orders/Advanced Search/Line Item Search in the Order Management System) now includes Fill Date (i.e. Ship Date or Pickup Date) as a search criterion. Fill Date functions just as do date fields in the Order Search -- thus, you may enter a starting date, ending date, or both.
3/7/2013 -- Order Report Enhancements
The Order Report (Orders/Report in the Order Management System) has been enhanced with the following additional features:
- Credit Card Capture Mismatches: If you are using a Payment Gateway (Settings/Compatible Software), orders for which credit card payment has not been fully captured (or has been overcaptured) are now highlighted in the Payment column.
- Order and Billing Status: Order Status and Billing Status now appear for every order included in the report.
- Outstanding Basis: You may now choose to show only outstanding orders (i.e. not Shipped, Picked Up, Canceled, or Return-Customer) as the Report Basis.
3/6/2013 -- Coupon Enhancements: Discount Application and Additional Purchase Quantity
The new Discount Application field, available when creating or editing a coupon in the Order Management System, or via the Coupon Import (Coupons/Import) controls how the Coupon Discount applies to an order. You may choose to apply the discount to only the most expensive qualifying product, to the least expensive qualifying product, or to all qualifying products.
Example: A customer purchases 2 products, one priced at $5.00 and the other at $10.00, and activates a coupon for which the Coupon Type is a Discount Percent of 20% and the Coupon Application is "all products". The customer receives $2.00 off with the Most Expensive option (20% of $10.00); $1.00 off with the Least Expensive option (20% of $5.00); and $3.00 off with the All option.
- This field does not apply to shipping coupons. In a multiple shipment scenario, a shipping coupon always applies to all qualifying shipping rates.
- With a Flat Discount, the Most Expensive and Least Expensive options are equivalent, as the Flat Discount is not limited by the price of the product to which it applies, but rather by the aggregate total of all eligible products in the order.
- This field replaces the Allow Multiple Discounts option.
Additionally, the new Additional Purchase Required Quantity field allows you to require that a specified quantity of a certain product, or a specified quantity of products within certain category, be added to the Shopping Cart before the customer is eligible to receive the Coupon Discount.
2/28/2013 -- Generate Alphanumeric Passwords
The new Generate Alphanumeric Passwords option (Customers/Password Preferences in the Order Management System) controls whether or not automatically generated customer passwords are entirely alphanumeric. If this option is on, generated passwords contain only letters and numbers. If this option is off, symbols found on standard keyboards may be included as well.
Tip: This option is recommended if you prioritize keeping passwords simple for your customers. Non-alphanumeric characters do make passwords more secure, but may contain characters that some customers have difficulty locating on their keyboards.
1/30/2013 -- ShipCompliant Sales Tax Integration
If you have ShipCompliant enabled (Settings/Compatible Software/Alcoholic Beverage Tools/ShipCompliant) you now have the ability to use ShipCompliant as a sales tax provider (Settings/Sales Tax/Third Party Sales Tax Provider). ShipCompliant provides tax data at the street level specific to product type (e.g. wine, food, freight and merchandise).
1/9/2013 -- Shipped E-Mail BCC
The new Shipped E-Mail BCC option (Settings/Boolean Options) controls whether or not Secondary Contacts (as defined on the user level) are included as recipients of Shipped E-Mails (and Sent E-Mails for Gift Certificate Orders, and Ready E-Mails for Pickup Orders) in the BCC (blind carbon copy) field.
1/8/2013 -- No Attribute Default Selection
For products with attributes, the new No Attribute Default Selection option (Settings/Site Options in the Order Management System) controls whether or not default options are selected when a customer first views a Product Detail screen in the Online Store. This option thus allows you to require customers to actively select a value for every attribute before adding the product to the Shopping Cart.
If this option is on, a placeholder option is selected, by default, for each attribute. You may optionally enter text for that option via the Placeholder Option Text field, and optionally append the Attribute Name via the Append Attribute Name checkbox. For example, entering "Select" as the Placeholder Option Text and appending Attribute Names results in "Select Size", "Select Color", etc.
If this option is off, the option selected by default for each attribute corresponds to the product's Default SKU.
Note: This option applies only to the Nexternal.NET Online Store Version (Layout/General Layout).
1/8/2013 -- Pickup Orders
This update implements pickup as a new fulfillment method in the Online Store. The Online Store now supports both shipment and pickup, and both fulfillment methods can be mixed in a single Shopping Cart (i.e. a customer can mix shipment and pickup products in the same purchase).
To enable pickup, you must first create at least one Pickup Location at Settings/Pickup Locations in the Order Management System. Pickup Days may be restricted to particular days of the week, at least one of which must be selected. Advisory location information, including a map reference, may be provided for a pickup location.
At the product level, you may designate a product as available for pickup, and associate it with one or more Pickup Locations, via the New/Edit Product screen; via the Product Import (Products/Import); or via the XML Tools (Settings/XML Tools). You may also designate a product as Pickup Only, if you do not want it available for shipment.
In Online Store, the purchaser sees and selects (if available) the appropriate fulfillment method for a product, which is placed into the Shopping Cart, subdivided by pickup location if pickup has been selected. The Ship-To/Bill-To and Invoice pages have been modified slightly to accommodate pickup information, including the addition of an optional Expected Pickup Date on the Invoice page.
- If shipment and pickup fulfillment methods are combined in one purchase, two orders are created.
- In the Order Management System, Pickup Orders have their own set of possible Order Statuses, and are handled appropriately.
- Pickup is not supported in the Nexternal Classic Online Store Version (Layout/General Layout), or in Nexternal Mobile.
12/31/2012 -- Coupon Application: Multiple Shipping Methods
You may now select up to 4 different shipping methods in a the Coupon Application section when creating or editing a coupon in the Order Management System. This new feature is also available via the Coupon Import (Coupons/Import).
Note: Selecting multiple shipping methods is supported only in the Nexternal.NET Online Store Version (Layout/General Layout). If you are using the Nexternal Classic Online Store Version in any capacity, you are strongly urged to select one shipping method only, to avoid inconsistent results.
12/31/2012 -- Products and Categories: Unavailable Option
The new Unavailable Option for products and categories handles the scenario in which a customer in the Online Store attempts to access a product or category when it is unavailable (because of Visibility, because the product is Discontinued, etc.) You may choose to display the Default Message; to perform a 301 (Permanent) or 302 (Temporary) Redirect to a URL that you specify; or to display a Custom Message.
For products, this option is available in the Product Overrides section when creating or editing a product in the Order Management System, and via the Product Import (Products/Import). For categories, this option is available on the New/Edit Category screen (Page 1), or via the Category Import (Categories/import).
- The Unavailable Option is supported only in the .NET Online Store Version (Layout/General Layout).
- The principal difference between 301 and 302 Redirects lies in how they are handled by search engines. A 301 Redirect tells search engines to index the new page; while a 302 Redirect tells them to continue indexing the old page, as it is expected to return. They are identical from a customer's perspective.
12/11/2012 -- Maximum Ship Tos
The new, optional Maximum Ship Tos field (Settings/Site Options/Multiple Ship To in the Order Management System) allows you to enforce a maximum number of Ship-To Addresses per order. This feature applies only in the Online Store, and only if the Nexternal.NET Online Store Version (Layout/General Layout) is in use. The field does not apply to the Nexternal Classic Online Store version, to orders placed within the Order Management System, or to the XML Tools (Settings/XML Tools).
12/6/2012 -- Users: Limit Visibility to Ownership
The new Limit Visibility to Ownership option, available when creating or editing a user in the Order Management System with an Access Level of Guest or Power User, restricts the user's visibility of customers and orders to only those for which the user is designated as the customer's Owner.
Note: For orders placed within the Order Management System, this option applies only if the Nexternal.NET Online Store Version (Layout/General Layout) is in use for such orders.
The Limit Visibility to Ownership option is best used in conjunction with the Default Ownership option (Settings/Boolean Options) to ensure that users can view customers and orders that they create. Default Ownership controls whether or not a user is designated, by default, as the owner of a new customer, when (a) the customer is created via Customers/New; or (b) the customer is created while placing an order from within the Order Management System, provided that the Nexternal.NET Online Store Version (Layout/General Layout) is in use for such orders.
11/16/2012 -- Policy URLs
If you are using the Nexternal.NET Online Store Version (Layout/General Layout in the Order Management System) and have created a Privacy, Shipping, or Return Policy (Settings/Policies, Addenda, and Disclaimers), you may now link directly to those polices on their own pages.
The polices are located at http://www.nexternal.com/AccountName/privacypolicy.aspx, http://www.nexternal.com/AccountName/shippingpolicy.aspx, and http://www.nexternal.com/AccountName/returnpolicy.aspx. If you are using a Domain Alias, (Settings/Site Options), you may use the URLs http://DomainAlias/privacypolicy.aspx, http://DomainAlias/shippingpolicy.aspx, and http://DomainAlias/returnpolicy.aspx.
Note: If you wish to prevent Bordering HTML (Layout/Advanced Layout) from appearing, add ?HideBordering=True to the end of the URL.
10/17/2012 -- Customer Integration: Lockdown Options
Several new Customer Integration options (Customers/Integration in the Order Management System) have been added to help prevent illegitimate use by malicious users.
- The Require Password for Matching option requires that if you include any Match fields in Customer Integration, PASSWORD must be one of them.
- The Allow Customer Discount option allows or disallows the use of the DISCOUNT field .
- The Allow Active option allows or disallows the use of the ACTIVE field.
- The Allow Customer Type option allows or disallows the use of the CUST_TYPE field.
10/15/2012 -- Edit Option Order
The new Edit Option Order screen allows you to set the order in which options are displayed in the attribute select boxes on the Product Detail screen in the Online Store. The screen is available via the Change Order button in the Attributes banner on the Product Detail screen in the Order Management System. On that screen, the order is set by dragging and dropping options to their desired places in the list.
Note: Attributes are always displayed in the order in which they were created, and may not be reordered.
10/10/2012 -- Drag and Drop Sort Option
The new Drag and Drop Sort option (Settings/Boolean Options in the Order Management System) controls whether or not categories and products within categories may be sorted in the Order Management System via drag and drop functionality. Sorting is available via ""Change Order"" buttons on Category List and Detail screens. If this option is on, sorting is accomplished via drag and drop; if this option is off, sorting is accomplished via the input of an ordinal number for each category or product.
Tip: Nexternal recommends turning this option on unless you have a very large catalog such that drag and drop becomes unwieldy.
9/20/2012 -- ShipCompliant: AutoSync Shipping Data
If you are using ShipCompliant, you may now automatically sync shipping status and tracking numbers each night via the new AutoSync Shipping Daily option (Settings/Compatible Software/Alcoholic Beverage Tools Preferences/ShipCompliant in the Order Management System). This sync is bidirectional and applies to orders with a compliance status of green or red. You may also optionally use the AutoSync Start Date field to limit the AutoSync to only orders created after the specified date.
9/20/2012 -- Separate CSS
The new Separate CSS option (Layout/Advanced Layout and Layout/Mobile Layout in the Order Management System) allows you separate the Style Sheet Addendum from the default style sheet. If the option is on, the Style Sheet Addendum is called in its own file, immediately after the default style sheet. If this option is off, the Style Sheet Addendum is appended to the bottom of the default style sheet.
Tip: This option is best used if your Style Sheet Addendum includes CSS directives (e.g. @import) that must be called after the default style sheet. CSS Directives are only valid at the top of a a style sheet, so any directives included in the Style Sheet Addendum are automatically placed at the top of the file in which they appear. If you are not using CSS Directives, Nexternal recommends turning this option off.
Note: This option is supported in the Nexternal.NET Online Store Version (Layout/General Layout) only.
9/18/2012 -- Customer Type CSS Classes
If you are using the Nexternal.NET Online Store Version (Layout/General Layout in the Order Management System), CSS classes derived from the Customer Type (Customers/Types) are now included in the Online Store'stag. These classes are derived by appending the prefix 'next' to the Customer Type, with non-alphanumeric characters removed (e.g. nextConsumer, nextClubMember). The classes are thus available for use in conjunction with Advanced Layout Class Associations (Layout/Advanced Layout), allowing you to target your store's Advanced Layout features based on Customer Type.
9/17/2012 -- Cart Keeper
In the Online Store, a customer's Shopping Cart is automatically maintained even if that customer accesses the store across multiple devices, or multiple browsers on the same device. If the customer can be identified via a preexisting cookie, this occurs immediately upon entering the store. If the customer cannot be identified via a cookie, the preexisting cart appears when the customer logs in; if the customer has added products to the cart prior to logging in, the two carts are consolidated.
9/17/2012 -- XML Tools: OrderUpdate Enhancements
If you are using the XML Tools (Settings/XML Tools in the Order Management System) the OrderUpdate Tool has been enhanced to offer more of the features currently available on the Order Management System's Edit Order screen. Orders can now be Canceled or un-Canceled, and additional values at the Order, Shipment, Ship To, and Line Item level can be updated. For example, the tool may now be used to change the Shipping Rate and Method, Preferred Ship Date or Preferred Delivery Date, Sales Tax Rate, and some parameters related to discounts. You may also now update Line Item Quantity and Unit Price.
For further details on the XML Tools and their features, please refer to the XML Tools Documentation.
9/4/2012 -- Robots.txt Addendum
If you are using a Domain Alias (Settings/Site Options in the Order Management System), Nexternal automatically creates a robots.txt and one or more XML sitemap files for your Domain Alias, which assist search engines in indexing your store. The new Robots.txt Addendum (Settings/Policies, Addenda, and Disclaimers) allows you to add custom commands to robots.txt (http://DomainAlias/robots.txt), either above or below the references to your sitemap(s).
8/27/2012 -- Add To Cart Effect
7/26/2012 -- Invoice Label
The new Invoice Label (Layout/General Layout/Labels in the Order Management System) allows you to customize the term "Invoice" as it is used in the Online Store and in order-related e-mails (e.g. Order Confirmation E-Mail, Shipped E-Mail).
7/16/2012 -- Customer Password Preferences
The new Customer Password Preferences screen (Customers/Password Preferences in the Order Management System) provides options permitting customer passwords to be auto-generated and automatically e-mailed. Available for orders created via the Order Management System, Customer Integration (Customers/Integration), the XML Tools (Settings/XML Tools) and VinNOW (Settings/Compatible Software/Alcoholic Beverage Tools), the options are:
- Generate Only: If no password is specified when the customer is created, an auto-generated password is added.
- E-Mail if Generated: If no password is specified when the customer is created, an auto-generated password is added and e-mailed to the customer. If a password is specified, no e-mail is sent.
- Generate and E-Mail: If no password is specified when the customer is created, an auto-generated password is added. The password, whether auto-generated or specified, is then e-mailed to the customer.
- E-Mail Only: If a password is specified when the customer is created, that password is e-mailed to the customer. If no password is specified, the customer is created without a password, and no e-mail is sent.
If you have selected at least one option on that creates automatic e-mails, you may specify the Format, Subject, and Body of those e-mails in the fields provided. In the Subject and Body fields, you may include the Personalization Terms CUSTOMER_NO, FIRST_NAME, LAST_NAME, EMAIL, and PASSWORD, which are replaced with the recipient's Customer Number, First Name, Last Name, E-Mail Address, and Password, respectively, when an e-mail is sent. You may also send a test e-mail to yourself via the Send Test E-Mail button.
If you are using the Nexternal.NET Online Store Version (Layout/General Layout), the Use for Forgotten Passwords (Store) option allows you to use the same e-mail in conjunction with the password reminder tool on the Login screen of the Online Store, when that tool is used to generate and e-mail a new password. If this option is off, a simple default e-mail is used.
The Use for Customer Detail (OMS) option allows you to use the same e-mail when you choose to e-mail a customer's password via the email icon on the Customer Detail screen. If this option is off, a simple default e-mail is used.
Note: The Require Passwords option has also been relocated from Settings/Boolean Options to the new screen.
7/6/2012 -- Persistent Category: Auto Expand
If you are using the Nexternal.NET Online Store Version and the Persistent Category Template (Layout/General Layout in the Order Management System), the new Auto Expand option (Layout/Main Layout/Persistent Category Section Options) controls whether or not the Persistent Category Section in the Online Store is displayed, by default, with all subcategories expanded. If this option is off, only the active category is expanded, down to the level of the active subcategory (if any).
Note: If you are using the Nexternal Classic Online Store Version, this option is always off.
6/26/2012 -- Review Reminder Test
If you are using Review Reminders (Reviews/Setup in the Order Management System), or are interested in doing so, you may use the new Send Test Reminder button to send a test Review Reminder to yourself, using the selected settings. The test requires you to have created at least one product that is Reviewable and available for sale to the general public (as determined by Product Visibility).
6/26/2012 -- Reviews and Questions: Synopsis Options
The new Synopsis field for Reviews (Reviews/Setup in the Order Management System) and Product Questions (Questions/Setup) allows you to choose how much review and question information is displayed on Product Detail screens in the Online Store.
Reviews: The Basic option includes the review's Rating, Title, Reviewer, and Location, but not the review itself. The Full Review option includes the entirety of the review. The Full Review up to option includes the review, up to a specified number of characters. Truncated reviews are shown with a trailing ". . ." A review is never truncated mid-word -- instead, the character limit is extended as needed to reach the next space.
Product Questions: The Question only option includes only the question and none of the response. The Full Response option includes the entirety of the response. The Full Response up to option includes the response, up to a specified number of characters. Truncated responses are shown with a trailing ". . ." A responses is never truncated mid-word -- instead, the character limit is extended as needed to reach the next space.Notes:
- The Synopsis fields are supported only by the Nexternal.NET Online Store Version (Layout/General Layout). Nexternal Classic always uses the Basic (Reviews) and Question only (Product Questions) options.
- In cases where the Product Detail screen does not display all available information, a link is provided to the appropriate detail screen to display the missing information.
6/13/2012 -- XML Tools: SavedCart
The new SavedCart XML Tool (Settings/XML Tools in the Order Management System) will return information about customers who have placed items in their Shopping Carts, but have not yet completed the checkout process. Note that this query will only return saved cart information for customers who logged in and can be identified. Saved Shopping Carts are retained for 30 days before being automatically purged.
You may submit a query based on the shopping cart Expiration Day Range, Expiration Date Range, Product Status, Customer Contact State/Province Code or Country Code, and Product.
For further details on the XML Tools and their features, please refer to the XML Tools Documentation.
6/12/2012 -- Google Analytics Domain
If you are using Google Analytics (Settings/Policies, Addenda, and Disclaimers in the Order Management System) with the Current (ga.js) Code, you may now optionally enter a Google Analytics Domain. The domain should be the parent domain of your web site and Domain Alias (Settings/Site Options), if any, and is used to ensure proper continuity of Google Analytics tracking across domains. Please see Google Analytics Help for more information about cross-domain tracking; note that modification of the Google Analytics code on your web site may be needed.
If specified, the Google Analytics Domain is included in the Google Analytics code on all Nexternal-generated pages that use a URL on a subdomain of the Google Analytics Domain; and in all pages of the Search Engine Friendly Catalog (Products/Export).
Example: If your web site uses the domain www.firstfairway.com and your Domain Alias is store.firstfairway.com, your Google Analytics Domain should be firstfairway.com.
5/16/2012 -- E-Mail Layout
The new E-Mail Layout (Layout/E-Mail Layout in the Order Management System) allows you to select layout elements (font, colors, background, etc.) that apply specifically to HTML-format e-mails generated by the Online Store and Order Management System. The Order Confirmation E-Mail (Settings/Boolean Options), Shipped E-Mail (Settings/Boolean Options), Drop Ship E-Mail (Settings/Site Options/Drop Shipping), and many others use the layout parameters specified in this new section.
If there is at least one preexisting, non-Canceled product order, you may use the Send Test E-Mail button to send a test e-mail to yourself, using the selected settings. The test e-mail simulates an Order Confirmation E-Mail of the most recent non-Canceled product order.
Note: To enforce consistency, the E-Mail Layout of the Live Layout always applies.
5/16/2012 -- Mobile Store
The new Mobile Store makes it possible for customers viewing your Online Store with a smart phone to be redirected to a mobile-friendly version. This will enable the customer to view your Online Store without the need to zoom-in to certain elements of the page, and generally results in a more pleasant shopping experience. When this option is disabled, the customer's smart phone will continue to use the standard Online Store, which is normally seen on a standard desktop or laptop computer.
If you choose to use the Mobile Store, please enable the feature at Layout/Mobile Layout in the Order Management System, and carefully review the layout parameters provided to create the best possible experience for your customers.
5/1/2012 -- USPS and Endicia Enhancements
The USPS and Endicia Online Shipping Tools have been enhanced to take advantage of new features offered by USPS and supported by Endicia. Default values are available at Settings/Compatible Software/Online Shipping Tools/Preferences in the Order Management System, subject to override when creating a label from the Order Detail screen.
USPS now offers 3 Signature Options for use with the USPS Rates and Endicia Shipping Tools. If you choose to specify a Signature Option, the choices are:
- Signature Waiver: Applicable only to USPS Express Mail, Signature Waiver allows the USPS driver to forgo collecting a signature if no one is available to sign at the time of delivery.
- Adult Signature Required: Applicable to USPS Express Mail, USPS Priority Mail, USPS Critical Mail, and USPS Parcel Select, Adult Signature Required requires the signature of an adult at the recipient's address who is 21 years of age or older. Additional charges apply, please refer to USPS documentation for more information.
- Adult Signature Restricted Delivery: Applicable to USPS Express Mail, USPS Priority Mail, USPS Critical Mail, and USPS Parcel Select, Adult Signature Restricted Delivery provides the same service as Adult Signature Required with the additional restriction of limiting delivery to a specific addressee or authorized agent who is 21 years of age or older. Additional charges apply, please refer to USPS documentation for more information.
- Because the Signature Option is often important only for Restricted Products, you may specify separate Signature Option values for shipments with Restricted products and shipments without.
- Adult Signature Required and Adult Signature Restricted Delivery are not available to U.S. Armed Forces addresses.
For orders for which the customer has chosen to be billed C.O.D. (Settings/Billing Options), you may now choose whether or not to have the C.O.D. amount collected by USPS when creating labels via Endicia Shipping. Additional charges apply, please refer to USPS documentation for more information.
- C.O.D. packages require an affixed C.O.D. Form 3816, and must be taken to a USPS retail counter.
- For all orders for which C.O.D. is not the method of payment, this option does not apply.
- Endicia C.O.D. is not available with International or U.S. Armed Forces shipments.
- When Endicia C.O.D. is used on an order with multiple ship from and/or multiple ship to addresses, all discounts are distributed in proportion to product total to each address for the purpose of determining the C.O.D. amount.
- When Endicia C.O.D. is used on multi-package shipments, the entire C.O.D. amount is allocated to the first package.
The Label Type (Delivery Confirmation or Signature Confirmation) now applies to the USPS Rates Tool, in addition to USPS Shipping and Endicia Shipping.
Regional Rate Box C
Regional Rate Box C is now available as a USPS Packaging Type option. For products that use the Individual Shipping Package option, this value may also be specified in the Product Overrides section when creating or editing a product; via the Product Import (Products/Import); or via the ProductUpdate XML Tools (Settings/XML Tools).
Integrated Customs FormsIf you choose to include a USPS Customs Form (either Form 2976 or Form 2976A) with U.S. Armed Forces shipments, the Customs Form and label are now integrated (i.e. no longer printed separately).
Note: Customs Forms are not available with USPS Express Mail.
4/13/2012 -- Marketplace Options: Exclude from Marketplace
The Marketplace Options, available when creating or editing a product in the Order Management System, or via the Product Import (Products/Import), now include an Exclude from Marketplace field. This field allows you to exclude the product from all Marketplace Exports (Products/Export) and all Automated Marketplace Feeds (Products/Export/Preferences for Marketplace Exports).
4/13/2012 -- Bulk Order: Use Customer Search Results
When creating a Bulk Order (Orders/Bulk Order or Orders/Wine Club Order in the Order Management System), if you have executed a customer search, you may use the results of that search as the list of customers eligible for the Bulk Order, in lieu of selecting a Customer Type. When doing so, the highest Customer Rank (Customers/Types) included in the search results is used for display purposes (pricing, visibility, discounts, allocation, sales tax eligibility, etc.); but when the order is placed, the values relevant to each customer's Customer Type are respected.
When using the Results of Current Customer Search option, the following Boolean Options (Settings/Boolean Options) apply:
- If OMS Enforce Visibility is on, orders containing a product that is not visible to a given customer are not created.
- If OMS Enforce Usability is on, orders containing a coupon that is not usable by a given customer are not created.
- If OMS Enforce Allocation is on, orders containing a product that uses Product Allocations but is not allocated to a given customer are not created.
3/12/2012 -- Nexternal Twitter Feed
Nexternal's Twitter feed has now been added to the Login screen of the Order Management System. This allows your to always remain up-to-date with Nexternal news and notes merely by visiting your Order Management System.
3/12/2012 -- .NET Internal Orders
The Online Store Version (Layout/General Layout in the Order Management System) now applies to orders placed and edited within the Order Management System, including Bulk Orders (Orders/Bulk Order). This allows you to utilize the same technology and the same features for internal orders as for your Online Store.
Note: If you are currently using the Nexternal.NET Online Store Version, a copy of your Live Layout has automatically been created for you with the Online Store Version set to Nexternal Classic. This copy has been added to the Layout Archive as "Live Layout Copy", and set to be the Internal Order Layout (Layout/Advanced) to ensure continuity for your business. To use Nexternal.NET for internal orders, set the Internal Order Layout to "This Layout", or delete "Live Layout Copy" from the Layout Archive.
Additionally, the Order Management System itself now uses ASP.NET technology. Frames have been removed, and URLs are now more intuitive and user-friendly.
2/28/2012 -- ATC Advanced Validation Option
The new ATC Advanced Validation (Settings/Boolean Options in the Order Management System) option controls the degree of validation on the Quantity field (adjacent to the Add To Cart Button) in the Online Store. If this option is on (the default), advanced validation is used to ignore any non-digits typed into the Quantity field, and to employ Validator Callouts. This enhances the user experience at the expense of additional lines of client-side code that must be downloaded. If this option is off, simple validation employing alert boxes is used.
Note: This option applies to the Nexternal.NET Online Store Version (Layout/General Layout) only.
Tip: Nexternal recommends keeping this option on unless you have a compelling reason to turn it off.
2/27/2012 -- DocType Declaration
If you are using the Nexternal.NET Online Store Version (Layout/General Layout in the Order Management System), the new DocType Declaration field (Layout/Advanced Layout) allows you to specify the DocType Declaration used in your Online Store. You may choose either to use the Standard DocType (currently the XHTML 1.0 Transitional DocType, but subject to change), or to specify a Custom Doctype.
Tip: Nexternal recommends using the Standard DocType unless you have a compelling reason to use a Custom Doctype. A Custom Doctype should only be specified by an experienced programmer with a deep understanding of DocTypes and their impact. If you choose to do so, it is strongly recommended that you thoroughly test your Online Store for any adverse impact.
2/16/2012 -- XML Tools: OrderQuery By OrderLineItem
If you are using the XML Tools (Settings/XML Tools in the Order Management System) you may now retrieve order information based on specific Product details from the Order Line Item. Orders can be queried using the Product Name, Product SKU, Product Number, Line Item Status, Vendor, or Tracking Number. For orders that contain products defined at the SKU level you may include a SKU-level SKU value, or you may include a list of one or more Attributes and Options that define your SKU-level item.
For further details on the XML Tools and their features, please refer to the XML Tools Documentation.
2/15/2012 -- Product Sharing Alignment
The new Product Sharing Alignment field (Layout/Main Layout/Product Section Options/Products in the Order Management System) controls the alignment (horizontal or vertical) of the Product Sharing buttons (Settings/Compatible Software/Social Media), if in use. Because some buttons require more space than others, this field only applies to the more compact buttons: the Tweet Button, the +1 Button, and the Pin It Button.
2/6/2012 -- Pinterest Product Sharing
The new Pinterest Product Sharing feature (Settings/Compatible Software/Social Networking in the Order Management System) places a button (the Pin It Button) on your Product Detail screens in the Online Store, with which your customers may instantly pin any of your products to their online pinboard, saving the product for future reference and sharing it with friends and family. If the Count Box is on (via the Count Box Style option on the Preferences screen), the button also displays the total number of people who have "pinned" the product.
Note: The Pin It Button is supported only in the Nexternal.NET Online Store Version (Layout/General Layout).
1/30/2012 -- MailChimp Integration
This update announces a new MailChimp Integration (Settings/Compatible Software in the Order Managment System)
MailChimp is an e-mail service provider which can be used for e-mail styling as well as many other advanced e-mail related features like the following:
- A/B Split Testing
- Social Sharing
- Template Design
- E-mail Reporting
- Geolocation based delivery timing
From the Customers screen, the export option now includes MailChimp as an export option. If a synchronized list which reports MailChimp user status to Nexternal, and reports Nexternal customer mailing list status to MailChimp, then use the "Sync Mailing Lists" option. The "Sync Mailing Lists" option can be found in the Order Management System from the Settings tab -> Compatible Software: MailChimp E-mail Marketing.
To see a 5 minute video detailing this integration, please click here.
1/30/2012 -- Mail Wizard Enhancements
The Mail Wizard (Customers/Mail Wizard in the Order Management System) has been enhanced and now includes the following features:
Scheduling - Users may now schedule a date and time to send the bulk e-mail.
Completion Notification – The Primary Company Contact, the User, and the e-mail listed in the “From” address will now receive confirmation when the e-mail script has completed.
E-Mail Affiliates - The Affiliates Screen now also offers its own Mail Wizard.
11/22/2011 -- Country of Origin
The new Country of Origin field, available on the product level in the Product Overrides section in the Order Management System, or via the Product Import (Products/Import) is used for alcoholic products included in the Amazon Product Ads feed (Products/Export), and with some Online Shipping Tools (Settings/Compatible Software) when international shipping labels are created. The default Country of Origin is the country of the products's Ship From Address (Settings/Ship From Addresses).
11/22/2011 -- Prevent Duplicate E-Mail
The new Prevent Duplicate E-Mail option (Settings/Boolean Options in the Order Management System) prohibits the use of an e-mail address in a customer account when that e-mail address is already in use by another active customer account. If this option is on, the restriction applies on the Register screen in the Online Store and in Direct Checkout; and on the New/Edit Customer screen in the Order Management System. If a customer or OMS user attempts to duplicate an e-mail address, he/she is presented with a warning and must either use a different e-mail address or cancel the form.
Tip: If this option is on, Nexternal highly recommends also turning on the Require Password option (Settings/Boolean Options).
Note: This option does not apply to other means to create or edit a customer account, including the Customer Import (Customers/Import), Customer Integration (Customers/Integration), the XML Tools (Settings/XML Tools), and VinNOW (Settings/Compatible Software/Alcoholic Beverage Tools); nor does it remove any preexisting duplicates.
11/22/2011 -- Amazon Product Ads and TheFind Marketplace Feeds
Amazon Product Ads and TheFind feeds have been added to the Marketplace Exports (Products/Export in the Order Management System). These feeds may be created manually, or you may participate in their respective Automated Feeds (Products/Export/Marketplace Exports Preferences) to automatically send a fresh feed to the appropriate service every weekday.
Amazon Product Ads: Amazon Product Ads provides targeted pay-per-click advertising on amazon.com. Signup is required, please refer the Amazon Product Ads Home Page for more information and to create an account. Once listed, your products are promoted in relevant category and product pages at Amazon.com, an effective way to reach targeted buyers.
- To complete the Amazon Product Ads signup process, you must set up a budget in Amazon Seller Central.
- Amazon does not allow Product Ads in some product categories (currently Apparel, Automotive Parts and Accessories, Books, CD and Vinyl, Cell Phones and Accessories, DVD, Kindle Accessories, Motorcycles/ATV and Protective Gear, Music, Software and Computer Games, Video Game Consoles, Video Games, and Videos VHS). Other categories require preapproval by Amazon (currently Wine, Grocery, Jewelry, Shoes, and Watches). If you wish to list products in a preapproval category, first create your Amazon Seller Account, then contact Justin Sluyter (206-266-6196 or firstname.lastname@example.org) providing your Merchant Token (from Amazon), Company Name, Website URL, and Amazon Product Ads Export File.
- If you wish list alcoholic products in Amazon Products Ads, take care to carefully specify the appropriate Alcohol Options fields within the Marketplace Options section on the product level.
TheFind: TheFind is a rapidly growing online shopping search engine and traffic generator. TheFind also offers a popular, free location aware mobile app. Signup is required, but submission is currently free; please visit TheFind Merchant Center for more information, and to create an account.
11/17/2011 -- Coupons: Maximum Discount
The new Maximum Discount field, available when creating or editing a coupon in the Order Management System, or via the Coupon Import (Coupons/Import), allows you to cap the allowed discount from a coupon at a maximum value. This field is best used in scenarios where the Coupon Discount is unpredictable, and you wish to prevent an overly large discount. If this field is blank, no maximum is enforced.
Note: This field does not apply to shipping coupons.
11/10/2011 -- Gift Message Report
If you offer free Gift Messages (Settings/Site Options in the Order Management System), you may now use the new Gift Message Report field (Settings/Policies, Addenda, and Disclaimers) to allow the creation of a Gift Message Report (Orders/Report) with which you may print all of your Gift Messages, one per page, based on the selected report criteria.
If you choose to populate this field, you may use HTML tags to enhance the formatting and presentation of your customers' Gift Messages. You may also use the following (case sensitive) Replacement Keywords:
- GIFT_MESSAGE: the text of the Gift Message. This keyword is required and must appear if you wish to use the Gift Message Report.
- ORDER_NO: the Order Number.
- FIRST_NAME: the customer's First Name.
- LAST_NAME: the customer's Last Name.
- SHIP_FIRST_NAME: the recipient's First Name.
- SHIP_LAST_NAME: the recipient's Last Name.
- LINE_ITEM_TABLE: a table showing the Line Items (quantities, SKUs, and Product Names) associated with the Gift Message.
- Users unfamiliar with HTML are encouraged to use the WYSIWYG Editor (Settings/Boolean Options), as improper HTML may produce unintended results.
- You may also choose to include Gift Messages on Invoices and Packing Slips via the Include Gift Message field at Settings/Site Options/Invoices and Packing Slips.
11/8/2011 -- FedEx 2Day A.M.
Nexternal's integration of FedEx Web Services (Settings/Compatible Software/Online Shipping Tools) now supports FedEx 2Day A.M., a 2 day service that guarantees delivery by 10:30 A.M. to most addresses in the United States. You may select this service as a available shipping method at Settings/Shipping.
10/17/2011 -- Authorize Flat Amount
The new Flat Amount option for the Authorization Amount field (Settings/Site Options/Compatible Software/Payment Gateways/Authorization/Preferences in the Order Management System) allows you to authorize a fixed amount for every credit card order, regardless of the Order Total. This option is appropriate if you are using authorizations only to test the validity of credit cards, and not as a basis for future fund capture.
10/5/2011 -- Coupons: Discount To
The new Discount To option for Coupon Type allows you to create a coupon that offers a dynamic discount amount such that the price after the discount equals a specified amount. For example, you might create a coupon that offers a Discount To $10.00 on a particular product, meaning that the final price of the product after the Coupon Discount is $10.00. This enhancement would also allow you to run a promotion that sets a fixed price on a shipping method ($1 UPS Ground Shipping - Today Only). This option is available when creating or editing a coupon in the Order Management System, or via the Coupon Import (Coupons/Import).