For this release cycle we focused on the following areas:
- WordPress 3.8 Ready
- E-Commerce API, Options and Payment Gateways
- Inventory Management, Refunds and Credits (Gift Certificates)
- E-mail Management
- Events Management!
- Some minor (but very useful) improvements
- Cleanup, Bug Fixes and Documentation
We’re working hard to keep up with WordPress as the development cycles become more frequent and ambitious. Perhaps the biggest update for WordPress this time around is the responsive nature of the administration areas. If you’ve ever tried to update your WordPress site from your mobile device before, you’ll really appreciate this! From the beginning, we’ve made PauPress responsive inside of WordPress knowing this day would come and… for the most part it looks pretty good. You can do everything on your mobile more easily with PauPress now but it’s only a good start, for sure. Now that we know where WordPress is headed we’re already working on some big UI improvements for the future. Think of this as the beginning of the journey…
E-Commerce API, Options and Payment Gateways
Since launch we’ve only supported PayPal and PayPal Pro. No more. We’ve now added native support for Stripe and vastly improved our APIs to begin to quickly add additional payment gateways. Expect to see gateways for both ePay (Denmark/EU) and BeanStream (Canada/US) very soon with others on the way. If you don’t see your gateway supported, let us know!
To go along with the new API structure, we’ve completely re-organized our Financial Options and added things like custom button colors for purchases and donations. Additionally, we’ve improved the interface for adding financial details to your Posts, Pages and Custom Post Types. Whether or not you’ve added financial information to your content before, you’ll find this tutorial a quick read on how to use the new options and financial UI.
Inventory Management, Refunds and Credits (Gift Certificates)
Inventory management has always been a manual process in PauPress but now, you have the ability to disable purchases & donations when inventory thresholds are reached. PauPress now also manages the process of refunding and crediting items.
Refunds are also now automated in that PauPress manages the whole process of adjusting stock levels and, if supported by the gateway, processing refunds immediately. Simply select the item you want to refund, the amount and then PauPress goes to work. If there’s a remainder (for example, shipping fees) PauPress preserves them as a separate line item so that you still have your ledger up-to-date!
Finally, this release saw the addition of Credits to the financial functions. Credits are generally thought of as “Gift Certificates” or “Store Credits” and with that in mind you can now sell credits on your site to be redeemed at a later time. Additionally, you may now choose to issue credits to a user for a purchase they have made but not completed (e.g., signed up for a class, but postponed to a future session) . We’ve also updated both the cart and the options for Coupon Codes to accommodate Credits or… whatever you may wish to call them.
We know that Mail has needed some attention for awhile. While there’s a lot more we’re working on we decided to go ahead and ship 1.5 with some updates to make sending email a bit more clear. To that end, we’ve added required indicators for E-mail fields and a whole slew of API controls to make the process smoother. We’ve also added a tutorial for setting up MailChimp that will get you sending email right away. If you were hoping for a bit more here, stay tuned as we’re going to dedicate an interim release just to mail in the coming weeks!
We’ve had an events calendar in Beta for a long time now and we’re now releasing it as an add-on to PauPress Pro. It’s true, there are quite a few events plugins for WordPress but none that natively allow you to:
- Set pricing for events and accept paid registrations (and yes, inventory management works here as well)
- Accept event submissions from your community – registered or anonymous alike
- Let your users search for events on your site (and browse by map, calendar, list and upcoming as well)
- Search your database to find out who is submitting events and who is attending events with the same ease that you search for users in your database
This is a pre 1.0 release meaning it’s stable and in-production but recognizing there’s a lot more we’re going to do with this. Get it now!
Some Minor (but very useful) Improvements
Every release we do has a strong focus on one area or another but, as we build and fix, there area a few things outside of the main focus areas that make it in and are worth noting:
Duplicate Signup E-mail Error Message
PauPress, like other CRMs, is greedy; anytime anyone does something on the site, PauPress creates an account for them. This can be confusing to your visitors who are trying to register for the “first” time but may have had an account created for them via a contact form – especially when it says their email address is already being used. We’ve added a new option to the “What Happens Next?” section of the Signup options located at PauPress > Panels (tab) where you can write your own custom message to be displayed when registration fails due to an “email already exists” error. And, we’ve also changed the default message to read “It looks like we have reserved an account for you already.” and made the first link to “Recover password.”
Added ability to set the zoom level in PauGeo
Pretty simple – now you can set the default zoom level for all of your maps. We know, we should have had that in there from the start… apologies!
Improved views of receipt items
While minor, it’s actually a pretty big deal. The previous views of purchase and donation receipts were pretty awful. They will continue to evolve, but for now it’s an improvement.
New Translation files
PauPress and PauPress Pro now have translations in Italian (thanks Giuseppe!), Russian (thanks Yulia!) and Slovenian (thanks Tomaz!).
Cleanup, Bug Fixes and Documentation
We’re continually working to improve how the application functions. And as part of every release we’re looking to improve the functionality for translation, styling and interface behavior as much as we can. To that end, we’ve made the following extensive changes that you’ll probably never see but are present nonetheless!
- CSS consolidation to basic plugin
- Consolidation of translation strings
Bug fixes (since 1.4)
We do our absolute best to test every release on multiple platforms, in multiple browsers and using as many scenarios as we can… but we do miss some things and as a result, bugs appear. We are very grateful for your patience and consideration when you find and report a bug and we promise to always take responsibility and fix it as best we can. Here’s a list of the following bugs we fixed since our last major release (1.4.3):
- Fixed issue with MultiText (repeater fields) only saving one line at a time
- Fixed issue with Taxonomies not emptying
- Fixed issue with exports not containing default user data
- Fixed issue with Mail sending emails unexpectedly from Post pages
- Temporary fix for plural labels on taxonomies
- Instructions for adding items to the WP menu system
We’ve been watching the stats on how people access documentation and taking feedback from all of you. We’ve documented every page in the application but that hasn’t been very useful and we’re moving so fast that the documentation is a bit out of date. So, we’re going to focus on creating tutorials on how to get stuff done in PauPress rather than what stuff is (we’ll get better and better about that in the actual application!). Here’s our first two. More to come!
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