Get up to speed with past, present, and future Liftoff releases
- Business intelligence tools and data visualization
- Category display customizations
- Designation for shipping product separately
- Product display customizations
- Expanded low-inventory notifications
- JDF RIP integration
- Record-driven custom order fields
- Customer registration email rules
- Customer-specific tax exemptions
- Optional continue shopping modal
- Expanded OData API order dataset
- Automated Pageflex variable resetting
- Order cancellation and deletions
- Order owner assignments
- Order due date assignments
- Expanded order history view and order history search
- Improved order email notifications
We’re very happy to announce that your Liftoff platform now supports cXML-based punchouts. This powerful new feature allows you to seamlessly integrate Liftoff sites and portals into host ERP solutions such as SAP, Ariba, Basware, Epicor, NetSuite, and many more. You can now integrate a catalog, individual product, or specific landing page you designate with any platform that supports cXML punchouts that follow the guidelines found on the www.cxml.org website.
How does it work?
There are quite a few components involved, however, punchouts follow a process similar to the outline below:
- The host ERP system sends a setup request to Liftoff as an authentication handshake
- If the handshake is valid, Liftoff replies with a tokenized URL the ERP can use to redirect the customer for product configuration
- The user can then browse the designated areas of Liftoff that you define until they’re ready to add an item to the cart
- Upon adding an item to the cart, Liftoff pushes the data for the item back to the host ERP’s shopping cart
- When the user is ready to finalize the order, the host ERP sends a purchase order request back to Liftoff
- Liftoff parses this purchase order request and fulfills the order, taking any rules, budgets, or other assignments that you have made with the corresponding vendors.
We’ve just added a powerful new feature to your Liftoff platform. As of this email, we’re providing you with the ability to assign individual report access to your customers.
Enabling report access is easy. Start by navigating to your Customers / Contacts > Roles section within your My Liftoff portal. The reports your customers see will depend on the roles they belong to and the reports that are assigned to those roles. For this example, we’ll create a new role called “Field Staff Reports."
Next, we add customers who need access to the reports. Note – if you have more than a few customers that need report access, we recommend using Batch Jobs to enable access.
Lastly, we’ll select the specific reports we want to extend to this customer. Select each report from the drop down of available reports and click "Add."
If you need to extend different levels of reports to your customers, we highly recommend creating roles that reflect the type of access required. For example, some customers may require access to reports you wish to hide from other customers. A good naming strategy for each role would incorporate the type of customer you're targeting for report access, such as "Administrative Users" or "Field Staff."
Provided that you’ve executed the items above, you should now be able to log in to your web store and find reports under the My Account menu option:
To run a report, simply click the report name you wish to execute, complete the requested parameters, and click “Download”:
That’s all there is to it! Should you have any questions, please refer to our documentation that can be found here, or reach out to one of our account managers for assistance.
We’ve just released several important new features that should have a very positive impact on your ecommerce operations. Please review these changes as some of them may have a direct impact on your site’s messaging and integration features.
Improved advance ship notices
Prior to today’s release, automatic ship notice emails were delivered when your orders were updated via our legacy API methods. As of this email, the following actions will now generate a ship notice email to your customer:
- Applying tracking and shipment status within your My Liftoff administrative panel
- Applying tracking and shipment status via our OData API
- Applying tracking and shipment status via our legacy REST API
- Applying tracking and shipment status via our legacy XML API
- Posting shipping updates to Liftoff via your connected ShipStation account
Amazon sends delivery notifications.
Below is an example of our emailed advanced ship notice:
Improved customer email order notifications
We have made significant improvements to Liftoff’s customer-focused emailed notifications. Order notifications now leverage a more modern and easy to ready template that we believe you’ll find more attractive than our previous notification templates. Below are the email notifications affected by this change:
- Order submitted
- Order submitted, pending approval
- Order approved
- Order declined
- Order canceled
Typically we delay sending you updates until the end of the month so that we’re not inundating you with emails. Today, we are breaking from this pattern to highlight an important new feature. Read on for details!
Improved Order History View and Order History Search
As of this email all of your sites’ order history pages have been greatly improved. Instead of a single line item for each submitted order, customers will now see a full overview of each order and its items. Your customers can easily browse orders and reorder items directly from this view. For more detail, our expanded order details page is still available by clicking the link-enabled order number in the order history listing.
Additionally, your customers may now search their order history using a single search box. This feature will search the following order data points:
- Order number
- Bill to and ship to name
- Custom order fields
- Product name and description
- First line of variable imprint on web-to-print orders
It’s hard to believe that we’re already a full month into the new year. We’re truly grateful that Liftoff is part of your growth strategy for 2020, and for the many successes that follow. Thank you for your continued support of this platform, and being a part of a thriving community of subscribers. You continue to make the difference and allow us to challenge the traditional boundaries of ecommerce.
This month’s development recap is chock full of updates. Our team has been plowing through new features and improvements this past month, with no signs of slowing down. Below are the highlights from this month’s efforts:
Order due date
Liftoff now offers a convenient method for setting and organizing orders by due date. Within your My Liftoff portal, you may navigate to any active order and establish a due date. This due date can be made visible to your order list screens, both pending and in process, allowing you the ability to search and sort by your orders’ due dates. This feature is currently limited to your My Liftoff portal and cannot be modified by your customers. A future release will allow customers to specify a due date for their ecommerce orders.
Order cancellation and deletion
Many of you have asked for the ability to cancel and delete orders. To accommodate, we have implemented two separate features. Your My Liftoff order detail screen now provides a convenient method for both deleting and canceling an order. Canceling an order will allow you to take an order out of process, but still allow you to see the details behind the order for reference purposes. Deleting an order will completely purge the order, leaving no ability to recover or view the order’s details. Please exercise caution when deleting orders, especially if you think you may need to review them again in the future. Order deletion is permanent and cannot be undone by your Liftoff representatives.
For additional details regarding order cancellation and deletion, please refer to our online documentation.
Pageflex variable resetting
Many of our web-to-print subscribers utilize profile variables. These are variables that automatically merge a user’s profile data into an active web-to-print order, saving on entry time. We’ve extended this feature to enable future reorders of web-to-print products to re-evaluate these variables, based on your specification. This is especially useful when your user’s profile information changes often. Instead of requiring the user to manually update their new order, Liftoff will automatically merge the newest version of this data directly into their reorder.
There are four options for resetting your template variables:
- Auto – value is automatically updated if the customer selects a new identity or places a reorder
- Manual – value is only updated if the customer clicks a new Update Profile Fields call to action on the customization page
- Always – value is updated automatically upon selecting a new identity / placing a reorder or manually via the Update Profile Fields call to action on the customization page
- None – value is never updated beyond initial population
Below is an example of how you might implement these values in your variable XML:
<variable order="1" name="Name" attributes="" maxLen="50" type="text" caption="Name" reset="auto">@Customer.Name@</variable>
<variable order="2" name="Address" attributes="" maxLen="50" type="text" caption="Address" reset="always">@Customer.Address1@</variable>
<variable order="3" name="CityStateZip" attributes="" maxLen="50" type="text" caption="City State Zip" reset="manual">@Customer.City@ @Customer.State@ @Customer.PostalCode@</variable>
Implementation is as simple as creating a “reset” attribute for a given variable, and supplying either “auto,” “always,” or “manual” as the value for the attribute.
Please refer to our online documentation for additional information regarding this feature.
Additional OData API order data
We’ve extended our OData order data API set to include new information that may prove useful to developers that leveraging these services. This new data includes:
- Payment method
- Authorization code
- Transaction amount
- Capture status
- Freight service method
- Custom order data fields
Optional continue shopping modal
You can now set your site’s “add to cart” behavior to include a popup modal that asks the user for a specific direction to take when adding an item to the cart. This modal will allow the customer to specify if they wish to view the cart or continue shopping. Clicking “Continue Shopping” will allow the user to remain on the product they’re on so that they may browse additional products. To set this change, navigate to your My Liftoff portal. Under Ecommerce > UI Settings > Order Workflow, you are presented with the option to toggle this feature on or off. The default behavior takes your customer directly to their cart upon adding an item to their cart.
If you'd like to explore this feature in more detail, please review our documentation regarding ecommerce UI settings.
Customer-specific tax exemptions
Prior to this release, tax exemptions have been set at the site level. You could allow a customer to specify their tax-exempt status at checkout; however, many of you expressed the need to force a specific tax status for customers. You can now specify a customer’s tax status under Customers / Contacts > Select a Customer > Settings. By selecting “Do not collect taxes for this customer’s orders,” you can fully exempt them from being taxed on any order.
Customer registration email rules
This feature allows you to restrict registrants to users with specific email domains. To enable this restriction, navigate to Customers / Contacts > Customer Access Settings. Under the registration section, create a list of domains in the “Required Email Domains” text box. Once completed and saved, this feature will block any attempts to register for domains that aren’t permitted.
For a complete overview of customer access and single sign-on, please refer to our access settings and sso documentation.
Forced password resets for customers via batch jobs
We’ve augmented the Customer batch job process to include a flag you may set that will force a customer to reset their password upon login. This is an extremely useful feature when setting up a large list of new customers on your site. By default, you can establish a simple password for them that they can change upon their first login.
Can you believe that we’re just weeks away from marking another decade off the calendar? Looking back, it’s hard to imagine that ten years ago, Liftoff had not come into existence yet. In fact, there are a host of household names that were only recently established within the last ten years. Here’s a list of things that didn’t exist at the turn of the last decade:
- Instagram (2010)
- Apple iPad (2010) and Apple Watch (2015)
- Pinterest (2010)
- Snapchat (2011)
- Lyft (2012)
- Amazon Alexa (2014)
- Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Lattes (2015)
- And so many more…
Speaking of transformation, the team has been hard at work developing a host of new features and improvements. Below is a recap of November’s releases and new features.
Disable copy configuration for variable products
Earlier this year, we introduced a feature that allowed for seamless copying of variable data from one product to another. This allowed your customers to configure one item, such as a business card, and have those same imprint values be applied to complementing products without the user having to configure each product individually. In the event that you wish to disable this feature, we’ve devised a quick and easy way to control this at the template level: Simply place the variable below into any template that you don't want using this copy feature:
Support for name and logo overrides in customer-facing emails
Some of you asked for the ability to override the logo and name that appears in your customer-facing emails. To assist with this, we’ve added a convenient method to the ECommerce > Email Settings page that allows you to supply an alternate logo and “from name” that will appear in the email when sent.
Support record sets on product landing pages
Liftoff’s Records feature is easily one of the most powerful aspects of the platform. We’ve extended support of Records to your product landing pages. You can now code against any data table you create using Handlebars.js syntax on your product pages. For more information about utilizing records, please see our interactive documentation: https://docs.liftoff.shop/docs/records-and-container-pages
Support for “if / then” variable template controls
We’ve implemented support for “if / then” scenarios for the text, select, and recordselect variable types. This allows you to show or hide a specific variable control based on the value of another control. The syntax for this command looks something like this:
The ifField attribute assigns the conditional to another control. In the case of the example above, it’s looking for a value from the HasCostCenter field. The ifFieldValue attribute determines what value from the HasCostCenter field will cause this action to trigger. The then attribute determines whether to show or hide this control based on the provided value.
Please see our documentation regarding this feature for more information: https://docs.liftoff.shop/docs/creating-user-input-fields#section-conditionally-hiding-showing-variables
Support for bulk deletion of records
If you navigate to Website > Records, you’ll notice that we’ve added a new action to the Record Actions button list: By popular demand, there's now a "Delete All" button. Clicking this button will purge all records for a given record type. Please note that this is a highly destructive feature. We strongly recommend exporting your record set before using this feature in case you wish to reinstate your data.
Help text for variable template controls
You can now place text hints with your variable template controls. Applying an XML attribute of helpText and a value to a variable yields a text-based message directly beneath the control. To implement this, see the code example below:
For additional information, please see our documentation on this feature: https://docs.liftoff.shop/v3.06/docs/creating-user-input-fields#section-variable-fields
Prompt customers to set their passwords
Do you need your users to reset your password after the initial setup, or periodically force a password reset for security purposes? Liftoff now allows you to enforce password resets. To do this, navigate to Customers / Contacts > Edit Contact. Locate a checkbox titled “Require Password Reset”. When this is checked, the user will be forced to reset their password the next time they log in. Support for enabling this feature via batch jobs is coming soon.
Option for guest-only access
You can now create guest-only sites. A guest-only site removes all features related to logging in and registering. This is useful for basic kiosk-style sites that handle non-repeating orders.
Economic nexus extensions
In anticipation of eventual participation in the South Dakota v. Wayfair decision by all 50 states, we’ve enabled economic presence for Arizona, Missouri, Montana, and Texas. This decision is still being weighed by additional states; however, as each state moves forward, Liftoff will be prepared. We’re actively working with our partner, TaxJar, for updates to local and state tax laws to ensure Liftoff is fully compliant in real time as this unfolds.
Disabling proof downloads for variable documents
By placing the node below in the variable template XML, you can disable a customer’s ability to download the PDF proof of a product.
This variable would need to be applied to any template’s XML that you’re looking to restrict from being downloaded.
October’s development summaryOctober was quite the month! With 309 code commits and 60 branch releases, it’s safe to say we’ve averaged 3 feature releases or general platform improvements every single day this past month. It would be extremely time consuming to list them all, so here are some highlights from last month.
New OData API
OData is an exciting new API version that we released to our users in October. Much like our existing REST API, OData leverages the JSON format for data delivery; however, it’s so much more powerful than a basic exchange of REST data. With OData, you have the power to query the Liftoff platform directly. If an object is returned to you and it contains an array of child objects, you can easily expand that data to explore each child object, including that object’s children. Instead of making multiple requests to get all of the necessary components for an order, you can now query our OData endpoint for the order or orders you need, and then drill down into each of them with ease.
We’ve already updated our documentation to reflect our move to OData, and you can find it here: https://docs.liftoff.shop/v1/reference. For general information about the OData spec, please visit https://odata.org for additional details.
Product-level tax code support
Lifoff now gives you the ability to provide a unique tax code for each product you load into the platform. These tax codes are taken into consideration at checkout and are weighed against federal, state, city, local, and parish tax laws. When applicable, items marked with a special tax code will incur a tax rate specific to regulations enforced for that item, based on locale. This feature helps ensure that all products ordered through the Liftoff platform receive proper tax treatment.
To set these values, navigate to ECommerce > Products > Edit Product within your MyLiftoff portal. On the Product tab, at the bottom of the screen, you’ll note there’s a dropdown that allows you to specify the tax code for your item. If you have a large number of products to update, you can update these values using the Product option under Tools > Batch Jobs.
Support for residential addresses
If there’s a possibility that shipments from your stores will be delivered to a residence, Liftoff now supports a user-selectable option for specifying the nature of a shipment’s delivery. To set this option, navigate to ECommerce > Shipping > Settings Tab. On this screen, you’ll see a text box titled “Allow Residential”. Checking this box will automatically place an indicator on your checkout page that will ask the user to confirm if the address is a residence. If the user selects this, the shipping rates returned will include your carrier’s applicable charges for residential shipments. Please note that Liftoff cannot automatically verify which addresses are businesses or residences.
New customer default options
We've taken additional steps towards improving automation surrounding the creation of new customers in your Liftoff stores. This new feature allows you to specify default actions that are triggered when a user registers on Liftoff. Below are the default settings you can enable with this feature:
- Set all new customers to “Open Account” – This would allow all new users to check out without providing credit card or budget payment.
- Let new customers add, edit, and update billing addresses – Setting this enables users to manage their available billing addresses from within their address book.
- Let new customers add, edit, and update shipping addresses – Setting this enables users to manage their available shipping addresses from within their address book.
- Let new customers pay via gift card / budget – Enabling this allows all new registrants the ability to pay via a budget or gift card code.
- Let new customers apply discount codes to orders – This option enables the ability for newly-registered customers to apply discounts to their orders.
Required attention field
Show all email recipients on the notifications tab
We've enhanced your order notifications screen to include a list of all email recipients who were sent each message. When viewing your order details, you have full visibility into the emails that were sent, and exactly who they were sent to.
Custom product fields in cXML
We've updated your cXML integration method to include any custom field data you set. These values are implemented as cXML Extrinsic fields located within each ItemOut node of the cXML Order Request message. If your application did not previously look for custom data within these extrinsic fields, you should not note any change with your existing integrations.
Record sorting – This bug allowed some record types to sort randomly, even with specified filter and sort criteria. This issue has been resolved for all areas consuming records.
Remove invitation for registering on guest-only sites – It was discovered that guest-only site emails contained a registration link that wasn’t applicable. This link was removed for guest-only sites.
Missing timestamps on batch job success emails – The recent change to DateTimeOffset date formats inadvertently dropped the starting and ending time summaries from emails generated at the completion of a batch job execution. These timestamps have been added back.
Wrong status being displayed on batch job email notifications – A recent update caused batch job email notifications to display a final status of “pending”. This behavior has been corrected.
A few months ago, our team revolutionized the way we approach development: We've gone from releasing code in two-week "sprints" to a method called Continuous Integration / Continuous Delivery ("CI/CD"). CI/CD allows our team to release changes as soon as they’re done, rather than waiting on arbitrary 2-week work cycles for each release. The past thirty days have marked our first full month using this new process; in that time, we totaled 58 releases to our production environment! Those releases include new features, bug fixes, infrastructure improvements, and general performance enhancements.
In the past, we’ve sent you a digest of new releases along with the closing of each sprint. Now, given our ability to be far more agile in our releases, we'll send that digest on a monthly basis. Past digests did not do a proper job of covering bug fixes. We're firm believers in finding ways to be better and more transparent, so, from now on, we will be including notes on bug fixes in each digest you receive. If there are any urgent features or bug fixes, we will inform the community right away.
Below is a recap of the past month’s activities, including bug fixes and feature releases:
Job owner assignment
Orders placed on your accounts may now be assigned a job owner to track who in your organization is responsible for fulfillment. Job owners can be anyone you have configured as an administrative site user. To assign a job owner, navigate to your order lists and click the “Details” button associated with an order. Locate the dropdown box next to the “Owner" and select your job owner. Once selected, there is no further action to take. If you wish to see job owners for each job in your order list views, simply tick the "Owner" box from the “Columns” drop down list on your list view screens. This feature applies to both standard orders as well as pending orders.
Many of the reports within Liftoff were designed in Crystal Reports. While great for rendering reports in PDF and Excel formats, we’ve heard from many of you that the quality of the Excel formatting is poorer than expected. To resolve this, all Excel-based reports are now using a new, more direct method for export that fully preserves the proper and expected format of these sheets. In a future release, we will review using this process for our standard report offering.
Custom defined customer data fields in order lists and order history
Liftoff has been able to collect custom customer field data since inception; however, this data has not been exposed to your user’s order history screen nor your administrative order lists...until now! This new enhancement allows you to search order history for any custom data fields collected during the ordering process. To make these fields visible, navigate to Customers/Contacts > Custom Fields. When editing or creating fields, there is now an option to allow this field to become visible with orders. Once you have set your desired fields, you may select them for searching and viewing on your order list screens.
Disabling web-to-print copy configuration
Earlier this year, we released a compelling feature that allows you to instantly copy the configuration of one custom product to another. If you have a product that you need to exempt from this feature, simply add the following line within any existing variable group in your product XML:
<variable type="hidden" name="CopyConfiguration">false</variable>. The system then detects this setting and will hide the copy configuration options from view.
Filtered checkbox list control
The RecordSelect control we introduced just months ago quickly became our most popular form control. It grants the ability to tie any dropdown box to a custom record-based data source AND filter the results of that data set based on other values you have on your form, whether variable or constant. We have extended this same ability to our CheckboxList control. Read more about this feature in our documentation: https://docs.liftoff.shop/docs/creating-user-input-fields#section-using-dynamic-data-driven-data-with-your-templates.
Base support for DateTimeOffset
Liftoff was designed to work in any time zone, anywhere in the world. This feature is a step forward, allowing our subscribers to designate time zone preference at the site and customer level. Time zone preference settings will be included in an upcoming release.
Updated SAML 2.0 library
In order to maintain the highest level of security and authentication standards, we have upgraded our SAML 2.0 library and have deprecated all protocols below TLS 1.1.
Improved web-to-print live configuration process
In further support of GDPR, we have extended the ability to delete a customer, even if they have previously placed orders on the Liftoff platform.
Deprecated dependency on Aftership
Aftership was the web solution Liftoff employed to quickly route users to the proper carrier based on the provided tracking number. In many cases, Aftership was not providing our users with useful information. In lieu of this service, Liftoff now sends customers directly to the carrier of choice based on the shipping level and method indicated in each order.
In response to TaxJar’s removal of several web service methods, Liftoff has been adjusted to work with TaxJar’s most current REST API. As a result, users should no longer run into confusing or incorrect shipping charge values.
Added budget history report
In addition to our standard budget report, Liftoff now offers a budget history report, which provides utilization of all of the budgets you have assigned to a given account.
Credit card icon resolution
In certain situations, the credit card icons would continue to show, even if credit card options had been turned off for a given site. We have resolved this behavior. Now, Liftoff will only display the icons for credit card options you select.
Cascading options selection bug
Some products set to use cascading product options experienced issues with being added to the cart or properly displaying other parameters. This was an edge-case and not present for most users; nonetheless, it has now been corrected.
Customer address book management
In addition to our default address management feature, you can now manage addresses specific to each user through a familiar interface. We’ve replaced the singular “default address” feature with an interface that will allow you to add as many billing and shipping addresses as you need for customer logins. To manage customer addresses, simply navigate to Customers / Contacts > Edit.
Your customers may also manage their own address books from the My Account > Address Book links available on your Liftoff eCommerce sites.
Shipping rate type selection
Prior to this release, Liftoff did not offer the ability to control the rate type coming back from a given carrier. By default, Liftoff would display the carrier’s published rates. If an EasyPost API key was present, Liftoff would return the negotiated rates for that carrier.
Moving forward, Liftoff now allows you to select from three possible rate types for UPS, FedEx, and USPS. These rate types are:
- • Negotiated Rates – These are your account-specific rates provided to you by a carrier if you have an agreement in place. These rates require the presence of an EasyPost API key. Typically, these rates are heavily discounted and only used in special circumstances.
- • Published Rates – UPS and FedEx offer this as a middle tier between retail and negotiated rates. This is the typical rate you’ll receive if you log in to the carrier’s website and request a rate using your account number, but with negotiated rates omitted. This is the rate selection used by most suppliers when quoting competitive freight costs.
- • Retail Rates – The retail rate is the highest amount you can expect to pay for a given carrier’s service. This is the standard rate you would receive if you were dropping a package off at a UPS or FedEx location for shipment, and should be the default rate presented to you if quoting a shipment on your carrier’s website.
You may change these rate selections by navigating to ECommerce > Shipping > Settings. From here, simply make your selection and click “Save Changes” for them to take effect.
Shipping estimate mark-up
Liftoff now offers the ability to mark up freight at the shipping method level. This new feature allows you to specify either a fixed dollar amount or a percentage amount based on the shipping estimate returned from the carrier.
To make this change, navigate to Ecommerce > Shipping > Select a carrier method > Select the Settings tab. The resulting screen will allow you to specify the markup type and amount you wish to apply.
Based on your setting, the markup will be applied to the estimate returned from your carrier.
Order-level handling charges
This new feature allows to you apply a blanket handling charge that will apply to all orders. This is useful when administering a release charge that will be associated at the order level. To access this feature, navigate to ECommerce > Shipping > Settings. This screen provides you a field called “Order-Level Handling Charges.” To apply this value, enter in a decimal value into this field and click “Save.” Once this has been completed, this charge will be automatically affixed to every order submitted for this site.
Automatic product image scaling
At long last, Liftoff has a solution for perfectly scaling product images without needing to pre-scale them before upload. This solution will eliminate the stair-step effect you may have seen when loading images that aren’t of the same ratio for your products.
This feature gives you the option to set a default background color or set a blur effect when images do not match ratio. This setting can be managed by navigating to Products > Product Images and selecting “Automatically scale product images to a consistent size.”
Error event email notifications
A few months ago, we introduced the Error Log Console feature that gives you insight into the errors and events taking place in your stores. With this release, we’ve created an automated notification system that will proactively send you alerts when there are errors at both the site and subscriber level. There are currently four error types that you can receive notifications for:
- • Order integration failures
- • Pageflex rendering errors
- • Payment gateway alerts
- • Shipping rate lookup failures
To configure your notifications, simply go to Tools > Error Review Console > Notifications. From here, input one or more valid email addresses into the provided email fields. Once finished, click “Save.” Any errors that occur on your site (or sites, for subscriber level alerts) will be sent immediately following the logging of a given error event.
Improved order dispersal speed
Liftoff now processes order disposition to third party systems and vendors in a separate thread. This eliminates any lag that may be experienced while Liftoff waits for these systems to respond and accept electronic orders. There is nothing you need to do to enable this change.
Custom customer fields have been an important staple for collecting extraneous customer information, allowing the system to make downstream order workflow decisions, adding value to platform integrations, and enforcing proper budgetary rule constraints. Although this already powerful feature was meeting current platform needs, we recognized that you needed more -- something far more scalable than presented in flat text-only fields. You needed scalability, flexibility, and a future-proof solution.? ?With that in mind, we re-built our custom customer field implementation and tied it into our powerful “Records” feature. This provides a much stronger and more useful set of tools for customizing your customer data than you'll find on other platforms. Instead of flat, one-dimensional fields, you can now add and assign your users to textboxes, checkboxes, date / time, file uploads, HTML, image uploads, linked records, numeric-only inputs, select boxes, and URL options. All of these options together can have an enormous impact on data collection and additional downstream workflow automation.?
Custom registration fields
With the re-invention of custom customer fields, we’re now able to offer you the ability to uniquely customize the registration forms on your sites. Leaning on the power of our new records-driven custom customer field technology, you can create custom fields that appear on the new user registration form. Instead of collecting and entering this data manually, after the fact, your customers can now enter it themselves as part of their self-guided registration process.? ?After creating custom customer fields, you may click the Registration Fields tab at the top of the screen. This section will list the available custom fields you've created and allow you to choose which ones become an active part of your site’s registration form. Simply drag a field from the box on the left of the screen to the box on the right to add that field to the form. After dragging all of your fields into this area, you can sort them in the order you’d like them to appear at registration.?
New category UI options
Liftoff now incorporates a new way of establishing categories and differing workflows for category selection. You can now establish a category selector that appears like a dropdown box. When setting up a category, under the Subcategory List Display section, choose “Text-only dropdown”. This will gather any categories that are children of the current category and display them in this dropdown list. You can enhance the customer’s experience even further by determining the action that takes place when a category is loaded. Under Subcategory Selection, you may chose either “Load the selected subcategory on its own page”, which is the default behavior, or you may choose “Load the selected subcategory below this category”. Choosing the latter will create a drill-down effect, where each sub category loads into a drop down box one at a time until the final selections are made. When you’ve reached the lowest possible subcategory, any products you have assigned will display on the screen.?
As of this release, you can now directly integrate your websites with your ShipStation account. This new enhancement allows you to send new orders directly to ShipStation for processing. Once an order has shipped via ShipStation, Liftoff will automatically receive shipment and tracking data from your ShipStation account. This will immediately update the orders within your web stores with information that may be pertinent to your customers. For more information on how to connect to ShipStation, please refer to our documentation, which can be found here: https://docs.liftoff.shop/docs/shipstation-creating-a-seamless-integration?
Record data filtering for Pageflex record select controls
Building upon Liftoff’s mighty Records feature for powering the web-to-print workflow, you now have the ability to filter data based on customer data selection, predefined variable injection, and default variable management. In simpler terms, you now have the power within Records to fully control the data that is consumed by your templates, then use this data to transform your web-to-print experience. For additional details on this powerful new feature, please refer to our documentation: https://docs.liftoff.shop/docs/filtering-recordset-data-within-pageflex?
New “empty cart” option
In an effort to improve the overall user experience, we have added an “Empty Cart” button to the general shopping cart. When clicked, it will remove all items from the cart, allowing the user to start fresh. Previously, a user would have to click the “Delete” button for each item in their cart. This could prove to be time-consuming in cases where the customer has an established cart with many items in it.?
More granular customer payment options
We heard from many of you that you needed more granular control over how your customers pay online. More specifically, you needed the ability to segment customer payment options for a varying array of customers. Based on this request, we’ve added the ability for you to selectively choose what payment options are available to specific users from within the customer management screens. You can now enforce which customers have visibility to credit card payment options, budget options, and discounts. By default, these values are set to “on”; now, though, you can override this for each customer on your site as you see fit. To make this change, navigate to Customers / Contacts > Edit Contact. On the primary Customer tab, you’ll now see options for enabling / disabling these features. Below is an example of these options:?
Automated scaling of product images
Until now, Liftoff required that you upload images of a very precise size to compliment the site design theme you’ve implemented. With this release, we’ve added a new feature that you can toggle on or off that will automatically scale and size images on your category landing pages, where product images are grouped together. To enable this feature within My Liftoff, navigate to Products > Product Images. From here, you can simply place a check in the box that indicates “Automatically scale product images to a consistent size”. Once saved, Liftoff will do the rest!?
Dynamic art file regeneration
In order to ensure maximum platform performance and allow for better corrective measures when there are issues with art files generated by Pageflex, we’re now using dynamic art file links. These links will replace static links that used to point to stored art files. Each time you or your customer clicks on an art file link, either in email or within My Liftoff, Liftoff will automatically request an updated file from Pageflex. This is especially helpful if you discover flaws in your Pageflex file that need correction. Now you may simply modify your Pageflex template and re-upload without the need to regenerate artwork for your client or vendors. There’s nothing you need to do to enable this feature.