Business Catalyst Blog

June 12th 2013 Partner Orientation Webinar recording

Diana Iliescu Thursday, June 13, 2013

Thanks to those of you who attended our orientation webinars yesterday.

If you were unable to join us live, you can access the recordings below:

  • Online Marketing - with Brett Stockley from PrettyPollution
  • Developing an Effective Sales Strategy for Your Web Agency - with Tim Gentle from Design Experts
  • Dreamweaver & Business Catalyst integration - with Adam Broadway (Download presentation deck)
  • Business Catalyst integration with Muse -  with Daniele Beaumont and Chris Kellet
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    Also, don't forget to register for our two upcoming webinars:

    Wed, July 10th: Learn how BC Gurus leverages Web Apps to power their popular Business Catalyst community website with Brent Weaver from BC Gurus

  • Australian/EU session (17.00 EST / 09.00 CEST)
  • US/EU session (09.00 PDT / 18.00 CEST)

  • Wed, August 14th: Adding value to clients by upselling products & services with Brendon O'Sullivan from Bosweb

  • Australian/EU session (17.00 EST / 09.00 CEST)
  • US/EU session (09.00 PDT / 18.00 CEST)

  • To help you put your learning into practice, webinar participants will be receive a 15% discount on their next website. (*Some conditions apply, see below)

    If you have any questions or suggestions please do not hesitate to send them over to BCPartner-Team@adobe.com. We will be happy to answer all your inquiries.

    Thank you and hope to see you in next month’s webinar.

    *15% discount coupon applies for new site upgrades on any yearly/biyearly desired plan. Coupon validity: 31-Jul-2013, only available for the webinars’ attendees.

    Adding Business Catalyst features to your Muse sites

    Jackson Palmer Thursday, June 13, 2013

    Following Chris Kellett's great webinar and lab session at Adobe MAX 2013, we've had a lot interest from Partners in regards to advanced Muse + Business Catalyst workflows.

    To help you get started, we've produced an in-depth training video to walk you through the process. Watch below and let us know your thoughts in the comments!


    Watch on YouTube or Adobe TV

    An update on our infrastructure migration

    Jackson Palmer Tuesday, June 11, 2013

    A few Partners have reached out to us asking about the status of our cloud infrastructure migration, and what’s coming as far as system updates are concerned. We’d like to give everyone a quick update and an idea of what to expect in the coming months.

    We’ve made great progress so far, having launched our new data centers for both Sydney and Dublin, with New Jersey not far behind. Any new sites created via your Partner Portal will automatically be hosted on the new data centers (excludes replicated sites or templates). A big thanks to everyone who got in early and made the necessary updates to the DNS records of their client sites. If you updated all your sites early, you will have received your reward in the form of a special discount code for any new sites you’re building.

    Due to the complexity of the data migration, our team are focusing all of their efforts on making the process as seamless as possible for you and your clients. To maintain this quality of service, we’ve made the decision to postpone our June system update to let the engineering team concentrate on the mammoth task ahead. In doing so, our goal is to reduce any associated downtime and ensure the integrity of all migrated customer data.

    Our new infrastructure, based on Amazon Web Services will bring increased performance across your client sites and ensure the future scalability and reliability of the Business Catalyst platform. Make sure you check adobebcmigration.com for more details.

    We thank you for your patience during this migration, and stay tuned for further updates!
    The Adobe Business Catalyst Team.

    One more week until we meet again for our monthly Partner webinar - don't forget to register!

    Diana Iliescu Wednesday, June 05, 2013

    Join our experienced BC Partner Brett Stockley from Pretty Pollution on Wed, June 12th for a business session, where you will learn more about online marketing.

    Wed, June 12th: Online Marketing with Brett Stockley from Pretty Pollution

    To help you put your learning into practice, webinar participants will be receive a 15% discount on their next website. (*Some conditions apply, see below)

    The series continues in July and August with presentations from two of our trusted Partners, Brent Weaver and Brendon O'Sullivan, who will teach you how to grow your business into the future. Registrations are now open for those instances as well, and we will be sending out a reminder as we move closer to the presentation dates.

    Wed, July 10th: Learn how BC Gurus leverages Web Apps to power their popular Business Catalyst community website with Brent Weaver from BC Gurus

    Wed, August 14th: Adding value to clients by upselling products & services with Brendon O'Sullivan from Bosweb

    If you could not join us live, you can click the links below to access recordings of our past webinars:

    If you have any questions or suggestions please do not hesitate to send them over to BCPartner-Team@adobe.com. We will be happy to answer all your inquiries.

    *15% discount coupon applies for new site upgrades on any yearly/biyearly desired plan. Coupon validity: 31-Dec-2013, only available for the webinars’ attendees.

    Get more clients and increase your profits using the Web Design Sales Kit from uGurus

    Jackson Palmer Tuesday, June 04, 2013

    One of the big takeaways from Adobe MAX this year was that while your web agency may excel at building high performance online businesses for your clients, everyone can do with a refresher when it comes to streamlining and optimizing your sales process. We run a bunch of sessions this year on just that topic, which received a great response.

    Today, we’re happy to announce that Brent Weaver and the team at uGurus have just released an in-depth Web Design Sales Kit aimed at helping any freelancer or web design agency to grow their business through a smarter, strategic sales process.

    From the proposal process through to pricing, handling rejection, and call scripts you can start using today, the Web Design Sales Kit gives you a solid framework for winning more clients, and increasing your profits. You can access a selection of resources absolutely free of charge by visiting http://www.ugurus.com/wdsk and entering in your email address.

    As a fellow Business Catalyst Partner and creator of BC Gurus, Brent and the team would also like to offer the Business Catalyst community a special offer when you purchase the full course. Simply enter the promo code BCBLOGREADER when checking out and you’ll receive a cool 5% discount on the already low course price. This offer expires June 11, 2013 (Midnight, Mountain Time), so don’t miss out.

    Until next time,
    The Adobe Business Catalyst Team

    BC Sandpile - June meetings

    Diana Herac Thursday, May 30, 2013

    BC Sandpile is a weekly online meeting run by Business Catalyst Partners for the purpose of sharing ideas, best practices, and networking.

    Weekly Day/Time:

    • San Francisco: Tuesdays, 5pm (all times adjusted in relation to this time)
    • New York City: Tuesdays, 8pm
    • London: Wednesdays, 1am
    • Sydney: Wednesdays, 10am

    Keeping it small, but making it BIG! - 4th June (5th in AUS): Greg Marcel from 2140 Interactive will discuss making the most of a one person shop. Greg will share his tips on running an efficient virtual business and not putting in 10+ hours days to do it.
    http://www.bcsandpile.com/_blog/Meeting_Chalkboard/post/keeping-it-small-but-making-it-big/

    InContext Editing with Tarik Essadki - 11th June (12th in AUS): Tarik from Creativaholic Studio will walk you through the newly released ICE (InContext Editing) feature recently added to BC, and how and when his Studio reduced the amount of Web Apps used in their clients' sites for editing using just ICE.
    http://www.bcsandpile.com/_blog/Meeting_Chalkboard/post/incontext-editing-with-tarik-essadki/

    Backing Up BC with Wayne Lawson - 18th June (19th in AUS):
    Wayne Lawson from Inhale Digital Marketing on the Sunshine Coast of Australia will talk us through the importance of backing up a website and explain what prompted Inhale to create bcbackup.com.au and allowed him to sleep better at night.
    http://www.bcsandpile.com/_blog/Meeting_Chalkboard/post/backing-up-bc-with-wayne-lawson/

    BC Utility Plugin Repository with Adam Cook - 25th june (26th in AUS): Adam Cook from One Creative will give information on his Business Catalyst Utility Plugin repository. He will explain what it is and how to use it.
    http://www.bcsandpile.com/_blog/Meeting_Chalkboard/post/bc-utility-plugin-repository-with-adam-cook/

    Full schedule: http://www.bcsandpile.com/_blog/Meeting_Chalkboard/
    Sandpile Recordings: http://www.bcsandpile.com/business-catalyst/resources.htm

    Incident investigation - spam submissions through forms

    Magda Neagu Tuesday, May 28, 2013

    As some of you might be aware, over the past week we have had an increased number of reports from partners on spam entries being submitted through webforms. Following several reports of this happening we have launched an investigation into this issue. Some of the conclusions of this investigation can be found below. If you still experience lots of spam please enable Recaptcha on those sites. If the situation continues even after this, please contact our support team to allow for further investigation, since the current actions are based only on the reports we have had so far, and items may change once we receive more information.

    What the BC team has done over the past few days:


    • We monitored the sites that reported the problem - for these sites, the number of web form submissions has increased 10x, compared to their daily average;
    • Based on our reports, we had a web form submissions spike of 535% on the New Jersey data center. The other data centers have much smaller increases in form submissions volumes (~25%), as you can see from the screenshot below, showing the number of web form submissions over the past period in our datacenters. 
    • We verified the type of web form protection used on the reported sites. All forms had Captcha enabled, most of them were using module_captchav2 (easier to read) version available on BC
    • We ran a report to determine the effectiveness of Captcha engines. The results show that forms using reCaptcha are about 18 times less probable to get spam submission that regular captcha. Therefore, we recommend updating web forms security mechanism to reCaptcha.

    Following the investigation some steps have been taken:

    • After monitoring the number of web form submissions , we have blocked 35 IP addresses which have more than 100 form submissions and have more than 100 reports on stopforumspam.com
    • Followed the activity on sites reportedly under attack; it looks like today the IP filtering we have applied has worked, as no unusual or high activity has been detected.
    • Number of forms submissions from the same IP today is not greater than 7 on any of the reported sites, while the number of web form submissions is still above average, but below the 10x factor that triggered the alert.

    Further action items on our list:


    • We’ll continue to monitor the webform submissions and the IPs posting them – blocking other IPs that have a large number of submissions
    • We’ll integrate with an external service to dynamically check and blacklist IPs upon form submissions, in order to further reduce the spam and reach the level experienced before this incident.

    Action needed on your side:


    • To increase your protection we recommend that you enable ReCaptcha on the sites that you manage, from the web form builder (under Site Manager-> WebForms). This has to be done for every single form you have. Here is a technote on how you can do this for a webform: http://forums.adobe.com/docs/DOC-3531
    • If you still encounter a large number of spam submissions even with ReCaptcha, please contact the support team and let them know the site this is happening for.

    Our team will continue to carefully watch this issue and monitor any changes that might take place. In the meantime, please do not hesitate to contact support if you have any questions. 

    The Business Catalyst team.

    Tune in for Episode 29 of the Business Catalyst podcast!

    Jackson Palmer Tuesday, May 28, 2013

    Tune in for Episode 29 of the Business Catalyst podcast! Hear a recape from the recent Adobe MAX conference, listen to an interview with Partner Jonathan Hinshaw get a reminder about our upcoming migration to Amazon Web Services and stick around for another quiz question at the end of the episode.

    Listen to this month's podcast:

    Simply click the play button below to stream the podcast via your browser.

    player

    Alternatively, you can download the podcast in .mp3 format for offline listening.

    To subscribe and receive the BC Podcast each month, you can find us on the iTunes store here or by simply searching "BC Podcast" from iTunes.

    In this episode :

    Until next time!
    Jackson.

    New Dublin Datacenter live on Amazon

    Magda Neagu Monday, May 27, 2013

    Hi everybody, 

    We are progressing steadily with our Amazon migration, and today we have reached a second milestone by having our new Dublin datacenter live on the new infrastructure. 

    What does this mean for the regular BC partner?

    All new sites that you create from now on in the Dublin Datacenter are going to be created on the new infrastructure. This means that for these new sites, created from now on the new datacenter, you won't worry about changing the DNS settings, or updating your SPF and TXT records. (Please note that you still need to update your old websites and their DNS settings. For more details about this check out our migration website.)

    These new sites also will give you an opportunity to test our new datacenter and let us know how you find the new Amazon Web Services hosting. 

    What are the next steps?

    We are working towards a final migration in June, so as part of our next actions you will see that we open up our last datacenter, the one in North America, in the next few weeks.  This will allow our partners in the US to test and deploy their websites on the new infrastructure as well. 

    What action do you need to take about your old sites?

    If your domain has been redelegated to BC then no action is needed on your side.  However, if your site has the DNS records with another provider, please follow the instructions on the migration site to help you keep your site available to customers through this migration.

    If you are not able to change the DNS and SPF(TXT) records by middle of June we cannot guarantee the availability of your websites for the public. 

    Announcing our May 2013 system update

    Jackson Palmer Wednesday, May 22, 2013

    May System Update

    We're excited to announce the details of our upcoming system update, scheduled to go live May 28, 2013. With this update we focused on answering a range of key requests from our Partner community, including changes to plan limits, a streamlined DNS interface, and more.

    For a more detailed breakdown including bugs addressed in this update, please refer to the official release notes post on the community forums.

    Update highlights

    Increased plan limits

    Based on your feedback, we've adjusted our plan usage limits across the board to better suit your client needs:

    • All site plans now include 3 Admin users, as opposed to just 1
    • The webMarketing plan now includes a more generous 5,000 newsletter credits each month, previously 1,000
    • webBasics now has the same storage and bandwidth limits as our webBasics+ (1GB storage / 1TB monthly bandwidth)
    • File upload size limit has been increased to 250MB

    Simplified DNS interface

    In line with our upcoming migration, we've focused on making DNS inside Business Catalyst even easier to configure with a streamlined and simplified management interface:

    • Advanced options are now displayed under a dedicated “Advanced” section
    • Fields such as country, culture and start page are pre-filled based on your system domain settings, to speed up the process of adding new domains
    • Options that don’t apply to a particular plan have been removed from the UI (eg. "Use this service for email" is not applicable for webBasics plans)

    Other enhancements

    • You can now select "Product Code" as a field in Custom Reports
    • The new InContext Editor (beta) now supports editing from iPads
    • When upgrading a Creative Cloud webBasics site to a higher plan, you’ll receive a pre-filled 10% discount code on hosting fees

    We hope you enjoy this system update, stay tuned for more features and enhancements in coming releases.
    The Adobe Business Catalyst Team