“Ribbon Ad” attribute property!

WCS and Attributes 2!

In the first post of this blog, I talked about the power of attributes in WCS and how business users can take advantage of this feature to transform a category page in a product self service system. You can check this here.

With the brand new FEP 7, business users won a powerful new way to use the attributes, it is the “Use as ribbon ad” property.

wcs Attribute propeties

wcs Attribute properties

*Notice that the old Facetable was renamed to “Use in faceted navigation”, Searchable to “Searchable in storefront” and “Use In merchandising” from FEP 6 is still there.

Now imagine the following scenario: Your store closes an exclusivity deal with an industry, and you will be the only reseller of a specific product.

Or your store will be making a presale of a tablet. Imagine you’d be able to inform that to the shopper in the vitrine display, in your category page or inside a e-marketing spot. Now this is possible with this new property “Use as ribbon ad”.

Check how it looks like:

WCS presale ribbon ad

WCS presale ribbon ad

WCS Exclusive Ribbon Ad

WCS Exclusive Ribbon Ad

Creating this nice effect is a piece of cake, you just have to follow these steps:

How to

  1. Access the Management Center, Catalog tool.
  2. Chose your Asset store.
  3. Search for the product.
  4. Go to the Descriptive attribute tab, in the product properties.
  5. Create a new attribute, or pick an already existing one.
  6. Define the attribute value to this product.
  7. Double click at the attribute, and flag the “Use as ribbon ad” checkbox.
  8. Wait for the next index build and “voilà”!

I showcased the 2 examples: Presale and exclusive, but we can use this cool feature to:

  • Advertise a promotion.
  • Advertise a special payment condition
  • Highlight a specific property like a brand.
  • Put a “New” stamp in the recent arrived products.
  • Put a “Last items” stamp
  • Put a “special sizes” stamps in clothes with special sizes.
  • Whatever else your e-commerce needs.

Hope you liked this new feature, and if you have any questions, please let me know, or leave a comment!

Source: http://pic.dhe.ibm.com/infocenter/wchelp/v7r0m0/topic/com.ibm.commerce.management-center.doc/concepts/cpnribbonad.htm

WCS and Attributes links:

Unleash the power of attributes: http://blog.bazilio.me/wcs-attributes

WCS Attribute Ribbon Property: http://blog.bazilio.me/wcs-attribute-ribbon

FEP 7 – e-commerce in a state of art!

I can’t deny how excited I am with the new features from FEP 7.

This next weeks will  be full of work writing about it. It so many features such as Page Composer, Page Layout, Product Ranking, Integration with comment system, Ribbon text, Attributes, Recursive Pages, New Preview, Widgets and others that I don’t now which one to choose.

For now, a sneak peek from the new aurora site,  and some CMC screens, that are incredible amazing!

mobilepreviewfep7 FEP7CMC

 

aurora

 

WCS and mobile SEO

WCS and mobile SEO

Search Engine Optimization nowadays is definitively something that we have to care about. In a recent implementation of WCS, we were able to bring the search engine results for a Brazilian retailer from the twentieth to the first page in google’s organic searches.

As we know, since FEP 3,  WCS bring some features that help with Search Engine Optimization issues.

Out of the box, we have some  cool features like:

Simple URLs:

With that, we can easily  replace “webapp/wcs/stores/servlet” by a token, like “shop”.

Metadata:

Improvements like Page title, Meta description, Meta Keywords (Keywords have no influence in page ranking) and Image alt text. Automatically added by the template or managed by the business user through Management Center.

Sitemap

Site map generation by WebSphere Commerce job.

Url Keywords

Product, category and static pages keywords URL, managed by the business user in the Management Center.

Extended Site support.

If an extended site demands a different keyword for a product or a category, the business user can change this keyword in the store.

If the business user did not set any specific keyword to this specific extended site, the keyword from the CAS (catalog asset store) is imported.

 

Automatically 301 redirects for changed URLs.

If a business user change a product or a category keyword, the old URL still works with 301 redirect, avoiding score problems with index engines.

Better 404 error handling.

The ability to forward customers that landed in a nonexistent page to the home page (default) or a search page for example.

Canonical URL

As we know, web sites loses score when they have multiple URLs to the same content. With the ability to define the canonical URL, the search engine bots understand that all URLs should be mapped to a single (canonical) URL.

All these features are OK when we are talking about desktop, but there are several things that we have to keep in mind when we talk about mobile.

Building Smartphone-Optimized Websites

Tablets are not Mobile – According to google, Tablets users expect to see tablet optimized pages, or desktop-optimized pages, due to some reasons, such as the large screen. So, if you are developing a mobile page for your site, do not redirect tablet traffic to this new store, unless your entire site is responsive.
Source: https://developers.google.com/webmasters/smartphone-sites/tablets

Strategy – We have 3 different ways to build specific (mobile / tablet) contents for our website. Some require more, some require less effort.

Responsive: Serves the same HTML for one URL and uses CSS media queries to determine how the content is rendered on the client side. This removes the possible glitches of user-agent detection and frees users from redirects. This method does not require different sitemaps, or extra attention with canonical URL. This is the recommended approach by Google, but can be a challenge in terms of code.

According to the official announcement for WCS FEP 7, the Starter store will come with a responsive design.

Dynamic serving: serves different HTML for an URL depending on the user-agent. Use the Vary HTTP header to indicate you’re doing this. This method does not require different sitemaps, or extra attention with canonical URL.

To manage that in WCS, my suggestion is to use struts, to create device groups (User agent groups), and route these groups to the correct view.

Example:

Device group creation in wc-devices.xml:

<_config:DeviceGroup impl="com.ibm.commerce.foundation.server.services.httpdevice.CookieDeviceGroupImpl" keyName="WC_MOBILEDEVICEID">
<_config:Device name="Forced Desktop" value="0" internalID="-1" channelID="-1"/>
<_config:Device name="Forced Smartphone" value="1" internalID="-21" channelID="-6"/>
<_config:Device name="Forced Tablet" value="2" internalID="-31" channelID="-6"/>
</_config:DeviceGroup>

Source: http://pic.dhe.ibm.com/infocenter/wchelp/v7r0m0/topic/com.ibm.commerce.webservices.doc/tutorial/twv_devdetectionpdatedevicesxml.htm

Creating the detection and redirects to specific views and JSP’s

<forward className="com.ibm.commerce.struts.ECActionForward" name="GenericProductPageLayoutView/10101" path="/Layouts/ProductDisplay.jsp"/>
<forward className="com.ibm.commerce.struts.ECActionForward" name="GenericProductPageLayoutView/10101/-21" path="/mobile20/ShoppingArea/CatalogSection/CatalogEntrySubsection/ProductDisplay.jsp"/>

<action path="/GenericProductPageLayoutView" type="com.fastshop.commerce.action.ExtendedBaseAction">
<set-property property="credentialsAccepted" value="10101:P"/>
</action>

Source: http://pic.dhe.ibm.com/infocenter/wchelp/v7r0m0/topic/com.ibm.commerce.webservices.doc/tutorial/twv_devicedetection1.htm

 

Separate mobile site: redirects users to a different URL depending on the user-agent. Use bidirectional link annotations to indicate the relationship between the two URLs for search engines. Requires a specific sitemap, and an extra attention with canonical URL tag.

In this approach, my suggestion is that we have to check if all keywords point to the same page. For example, “m.domain.com/ProductA“, should point to the same product / content (in the mobile version) of “www.domain.com/ProdctA“. We lose score if we do not do that. We should also avoid multiple keywords for the same page.

How to redirect pages

How to redirect pages

How to not redirect pages

How to not redirect pages

We should also guarantee that in our desktop pages, we will insert the special link rel=”alternate” tag pointing to the corresponding mobile URL. This helps Googlebot discover the location of your site’s mobile pages. The Sitemap will also help with this.

Likewise, to avoid losing points by duplicated contents, our mobile pages should have the link rel=”canonical” tag pointing to the corresponding desktop URL.

Defined the strategy, we should guarantee some points, that will help us increase our score with search engines:

Canonical URL’s.

When we have multiple URL’s to the same content, or product page, we lose score in the search engines. The way to avoid this is using the Canonical Tag.

This tag will tell the bots to identify what is the “canonical” or “preferred” version of the page.

According to Google, the canonical link element is not considered to be a directive, but a hint that the web crawler will “honor strongly”. So, the best thing to do is avoid multiple URL to the same page / content as much as possible, even using the canonical tag.

URL Parameters are indexed!

Instead of what most of people think, search engines care about and index the URL variables. If you have all canonical tags defined, this should not be a problem. But anyway, I recommend that we set all variables our page have to not be indexed in the Webmaster Tools.

Source: https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/1235687?hl=en

Besides all these rules, my recommendation for mobile pages is: Be SoLoMo!

SoLoMo is the acronym to Social + Local + Mobile., so, you are developing your mobile store now, keep that in mind. People use mobile devices because this is fun, doesn’t matter if they are, or aren’t at home. They want to have a good time; Then, create something funny, relaxing and integrated with all social medias, location services etc. In the mobile device, an app notification is enough to remove the user attention from your store.

Keep your Telesales number accessible every time. If the customer for any reason don’t close an order on your site, they can “click” in your number and buy by phone. This is Omni channel!

Be social, integrate your pages with Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter etc.

Create a mobile APP, use worklight for this!

If you have any question, please let me know! Leave a comment!

WCS FEP 6 new features – Spot Title

After a while without any posts, due to a complex project delivery, I will start to write again about an exciting topic. FEP 6 new features.

In this first post, we will start with a very simple feature that wasn’t in the business user control in FEP 5, and has a huge business value to the website.

The “E-Marketing Spot Title”.

e-marketingspottitleSimple as the name suggest, this feature allows the business user to provide a specific “title” for any E-Marketing spot he desires, through a web activity.

The effect of this is really nice, specially because we can use an asset as title, an HTML (to do something more elaborate) or a simple text edited by the WYSIWYG editor.

Lets choose as an example this spot from Aurora starter store, as default, it has the “New this Week” title.

spot Using the new preview (We will talk about these exciting new features from preview in a next post), we can see all related information of the E-Marketing Spot.spot preview

Then we have:

Title: HomeRow2_CatEntries

Type: Catalog entry spot.

Web Activity: HomeRow2_CatEntries

spot detailsClicking on “EDIT” the WebActivity, we see a simple “Recommend Catalog Entry” action.

To insert the title we desire, we have to drag and drop the action “E-Marketing Spot Title” before the content recommendation. Remember that in order to do this, you have to deactivate the Web Activity.

drag and drop actionAfter this, we have to create a new content or use an existing one to set as the Spot Title. Remember that we can use Assets or HTML, but for this example, lets create a simple title using the editor.

createnew

newtitleSave your content with your new title, and drag and drop it to the action area.

dragnewtitleSave and activate your Webactivity.  Use the preview to see the results.
It should look like this:

finalresultIf you have any questions regarding how to use any feature from WCS, please, feel free to post a comment!

 

References:

http://pic.dhe.ibm.com/infocenter/wchelp/v7r0m0/topic/com.ibm.commerce.management-center.doc/concepts/csbactlabcon.htm