Business Catalyst Blog

Site of the Week: Let's Cook Scotland

Roxana Moldovan Monday, April 18, 2016

Business Catalyst Site of the Week is Let’s Cook Scotland designed by Graphite Web Solutions.

The website was built for Let’s Cook Scotland, a small cookery school in Central Scotland. It allows customers to book and purchase courses online, purchase and redeem bespoke gift vouchers and has a management area for the business owner which not only allows to view/add/amend course attendees but provides an overall view of the popularity of the various courses and other business information.

The site was built over 7 months and uses Web Apps, Events module, Blog, bespoke gift voucher system and Event booking purchase.

The biggest challenge for the designer was to provide the correct information for the business owner when a customer books (name, mobile, email, allergy and names of other attendees) and to integrate a bespoke gift voucher system with the course booking and payment process. Liquid has made this achievable.

“We have been working with BC since 2011 and chose the platform in the first instance due to the integration of a website with a CMS, a basic CRM, Email Marketing and E-Commerce. We have been excited with the addition of liquid coding which makes the platform hugely customizable making a site like Let's Cook Scotland possible.” (Steve Johnson, Graphite Web Solutions)

A piece of advice for beginners, from the designer of Let’s Cook Scotland: “If you have just started using BC the best advice is to just dive in and practice with it - the fact you can create a trial site and play around with it is hugely beneficial and is great for learning. You also need to engage with the community on LinkedIn, the forums, the Facebook page, BC Sandpile, BC Gurus and BC Academe - there is a huge community of people willing to help and answer questions so don't be shy!

Graphite Web Solutions is a small agency in Scotland that has been building websites for 10 years and has been using BC since 2011.

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Our section "Site of the week" promotes some of the best accomplished sites, hosted on our platform. If you too have designed a beautiful site that you are proud of, send us an e-mail to bcpartner-team(at)adobe(dot)com. It might become the next "Site of the Week"!

 

 

Tips&Tricks from Mike Sallander to make your life easier. Join these 3 webinars to find out how!

Diana Iliescu Monday, April 11, 2016

Mike Sallander is a serial entrepreneur who has emerged as one of the leaders in the Business Catalyst community, co-founding Chicago Digital, BC Academe and Solid Sky, and also the new owner of the BC App Store. He is a unique problem solver who enjoys helping businesses and developers alike.

Pick the sessions below and register on your relevant timezone.

Wed/Thu, April 20th/21st: Content Loading Like A Pro

Do you remember the last time you had thousands of web app items or products to load and you are sitting at your computer for mindless hours wondering… there has got to be a better way? Well, there is, and Mike Sallander from BC Academe is going to share with you some Excel tips to speed up your content loading.


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)


Registrations are now open for the May and June sessions as well:

Wed/Thu, May 18th/19th: Enable Your Clients to Change Website Icons

Icons that render as fonts are popular on websites, but, unfortunately are usually only things that developers can change out. In this webinar, Mike Sallander from BC Academe will show you how you can setup a custom icon library for your website and easily allow clients to pick and choose icons of their liking from the library when creating new web apps.


Wed/Thu, June 15th/16th: Stop Waiting on Content to Save Your Sanity… and your bottom line

Unfortunately there is a universal phenomenon that exists with web developers everywhere. You hurry up to build a website to meet a deadline and then you wait… and wait, for the client to get you all the content. When they supply the content, they realized that they no longer need certain items you already built, or the site doesn’t correctly accommodate for this or that, which typically leads to rounds of unpaid revisions and projects that drag on way too long. All hope is not lost: there is a way to save your sanity and your bottom line.

Do not start development until you have all the content and functionality defined. This has been one of the most significant improvements Chicago Digital has made to its web building process. Mike Sallander, President of Chicago Digital, will walk you through an example project and how they use Gather Content to stay on top of the content and requirements for custom website builds on Business Catalyst.

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 monthly/yearly desired plan, for the first year. Coupon validity: 30-Jun-2016, only available for the webinars’ attendees. The discount code will only be offered live, during the webinar session.

Thank you and see you there!
The Adobe Business Catalyst Team

Site of the Week: Yoga Alchemy

Roxana Moldovan Tuesday, April 05, 2016

Business Catalyst Site of the Week is Yoga Alchemy, designed by Chicago Digital.

World renowned Yoga teacher, Shiva Rea, teaches and inspires people around the world through this online transformational portal. This website blends high-end visual components with complex back-end functionality to create a truly enjoyable experience for both the front-end and back-end user.

The BC features used include Web Apps, Secure Zones with Recurring MembershipsCRM.

The website allows Yoga Enthusiasts to purchase online courses that help inspire, balance and serve the flow of life. Functionally these courses are made up of a course curriculum, videos, meditations, and resource downloads. The website also serves as a place for people to sign up for a membership as either a student or a teacher.

Chicago Digital has been building websites exclusively on Adobe Business Catalyst for about 6 years. It is one of the most accomplished BC developers in the world having built hundreds of websites on the platform, founding one of the leading BC education sites and running the central marketplace for distributing BC Apps.

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Our section "Site of the week" promotes some of the best accomplished sites, hosted on our platform. If you too have designed a beautiful site that you are proud of, send us an e-mail to bcpartner-team(at)adobe(dot)com. It might become the next "Site of the Week"!


 

 

Site of the Week: Easysketch

Roxana Moldovan Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Business Catalyst Site of the Week is Easysketch, designed by Factory Cat.

The site was designed to become a lead generation tool for the sale of EASYSKETCH, a SketchUp extension, and it took 5 weeks to complete, from initial requirements gathering to delivery of finished project.

According to John Atkinson, the designer of Easysketch, “site build went very smoothly due to the power of the BC platform; requirements gathering was probably the only pinch point.”

The BC features used include Web Apps, Blog, Email marketing, Analytics, Media library. The site also features Secure Zones where subscribers can login and access content for the SketchUp extension.

John Atkinson has been working with Business Catalyst since 2010 and thinks that “BC features a suite of integrated web tools which has given us a competitive edge over other web companies promoting and connecting a bunch of disparate and expensive tools to achieve the same results.”

An advice from somebody who just started using BC, from the designer of Easysketch: “ Take time to learn and leverage the power of liquid. You can do some amazing stuff with liquid that at first glance of the BC platform might not be apparent

Factory Cat is an agency that has been building data driven websites, web apps and e-commerce stores since 2001. They developed using many languages but over the last 6 years have focused on developing using the BC platform only.

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Our section "Site of the week" promotes some of the best accomplished sites, hosted on our platform. If you too have designed a beautiful site that you are proud of, send us an e-mail to bcpartner-team(at)adobe(dot)com. It might become the next "Site of the Week"!

 

 

Email account updates as of mid-April

Magda Neagu Wednesday, March 23, 2016

In order to better protect your e-mail communication, we have made some changes to the way you can access your email inbox in browser or in an email client. As such, we have created a dedicated secure domain for email which we plan to restrict to use only SSL/TLS encryption for both incoming and outgoing communication. The new domain will be used to access your email from browser and email client as well.

Starting with March 31st April 15th you will no longer be able to continue using the existing email client settings. Please update your e-mail clients according to the instructions below:

Inbound (receive emails)

  • Inbound Server:mail.worldsecureemail.com
  • Inbound Server Type: IMAPS (993) / POP (995)
  • User Name: username@mydomain.com
  • Connection Security: SSL/TLS
  • Authentication Method: Normal Password

Outbound (send emails)

  • Outbound Server: mail.worldsecureemail.com
  • Outbound Server Type: SMTPS (465)
  • User Name: username@mydomain.com
  • Connection Security: SSL/TLS
  • Authentication Method: Normal Password

For more details on how to update your email client settings, follow the steps described in the Business Catalyst How to configure SSL encryption for your email client article.

You will also be required to use https://mail.worldsecureemail.com for accessing your mailbox using a web browser. Please note that site administrators will still be able to use the Admin Console and access their mailbox through Single Sign On as before.

Important:

The current mailbox settings will continue to work until March 31st April 15th, 2016. After this date, you will not be able to send or receive messages using your email client, unless you change your connection settings. Furthermore, mail.mydomain.com will be automatically redirected to the https://mail.worldsecureemail.com from then on.

We also strongly advise you to change your email password, by logging into webmail (using https://mail.worldsecureemail.com) and browsing to Settings -> Password. There you will be able to set a new password for accessing your mailbox.

Email updates FAQ:

  1. Has anything changed in the way I access email from within BC admin interface No. While the email inbox will be accessible through https://mail.worldsecureemail.com, for accessing email from the BC admin interface customers don't need to change anything as BC handles everything behind the scene.
  2. Going forward, how do I access email inbox from the browser? >Customers will be able to securely access email in browser by loading https://mail.worldsecureemail.com/ instead of http://mail.mydomain.com/, which will still be accessible until 31st March April 15th, 2016. Following 31st March April 15th, 2016, http://mail.mydomain.com will be redirected to https://mail.worldsecureemail.com/
  3. How do I access my email from an email client (ex: from a mobile device)? To continue accessing your inbox in an email client, you will need to update your email settings as instructed above before 31st March April 15th, 2016. After this date, you will not be able to send or receive messages using your email client, unless you change your connection settings.

Register now for a business webinar session with Amanda Holmes: 3 Strategies to Double Sales

Diana Iliescu Monday, March 14, 2016

This month we'll meet Wednesday March 23rd (US) / Thursday March 24th (AU) with Amanda Holmes from Chet Holmes International for a business session, where we will discuss 3 Strategies to Double Sales.

In this webinar, Amanda is going to show you...

  • How to create a sales message that gets 9 times more impact when you get in front of the customer.
  • 3 practical ways to get the sales message in front of your target audience.
  • Step by step instructions, proven sales scripts and email templates you can use in your business tomorrow.
  • How to follow up with your prospect the right way without annoying them... (80% of all sales are made during the follow up process).

Pick the sessions below and register on your relevant timezone.

Wed/Thu, March 23rd/24th: 3 Strategies to Double Sales

To help you put your learning into practice, webinar participants will be receive a 15% discount on their next website. (*15% discount coupon applies for new site upgrades on any monthly desired plan, for the first 12 months. Coupon validity: 30-Jun-2016, only available for the webinars’ attendees. The discount code will only be offered live, during the webinar session.)

There will be no recording for these sessions so be prepared for this interactive session and ask your questions!

Thank you and see you there!
The Adobe Business Catalyst Team

Business Catalyst yearly plans to be discontinued. All sites renew to monthly

Magda Neagu Tuesday, March 08, 2016

In an effort to streamline our offering and allow more flexibility for our customer base, we hereby announce that the yearly offering of Business Catalyst will be discontinued as of May 15th, 2016. With this move, the yearly pricing schedule will no longer be available for new sites, or as an upgrade from an existing monthly plan.

What does this change for existing plans?

Existing yearly and biyearly plans will carry on until the renewal date. Upon renewal, they will be switched to a monthly plan, while still carrying their discount (10% on yearly, 15% discount for existing bi-yearly plans). For example, if a customer is on a yearly plan with renewal due in October 2016, there will be no change until October 2016, and from October 2016 onward it will be billed monthly with the monthly price discounted with 10% (i.e., discounted with the yearly plan discount). In this way, our current customers get the price discount of the yearly plan while benefiting from the flexibility a monthly plan. 

If you have any questions about this change please let us know. 

The Business Catalyst team. 

 

Our Widgets Factory is live!

Roxana Moldovan Wednesday, March 02, 2016

We happily invite you to explore our Widgets Factory, which is now up and running.

With the new BC Widgets, you will be able to extend your site’s functionality in no time, with minimal HTML knowledge required. Choose, upload and initiate. It's that easy.

We are awaiting for your feedback and your ideas, which will help us enhance our Widgets Factory in order to best suit your expectations.

Site of the Week: Manufacturing Technology Centre

Roxana Moldovan Wednesday, March 02, 2016

Business Catalyst Site of the Week is Manufacturing Technology Centre, designed by HTDL.

The cutting edge Manufacturing Technology Centre (MTC) supports manufacturing businesses in their pursuit of world-class performance. MTC works with world-class research partners, which have attracted members such as Rolls Royce, Siemens, Nikon and Airbus, transferring cutting edge technologies into manufacturing processes in industry. From aircraft engines to automotive production they work with the world’s leading manufacturers to bring their products to life.

In response to the UK Government's manufacturing strategy, 'Manufacturing: New Challenges, New Opportunities', MTC appointed HTDL, back in 2011,  to develop all external communications from brand development to digital strategy to market this globally competitive manufacturing research hub to its target audience.

The website took around 8 weeks to build after initial wire-framing and design stages, however, the website is constantly developing with the online recruitment section being the most recent addition.

According to Andrew Hopkins from HTDL, designing and building Web Apps gave them enormous flexibility and the ability to allow clients to update the site very quickly and intuitively whilst being customized to their specific needs.

We began building the website when BC.Next and Liquid platform was still in beta, which meant we had to ensure our code would be able to utilize a lot of the new features that hadn’t been fully documented. Without Liquid markup and the BC.Next platform I don’t think that the site would have been possible.

We also had to ensure that the site could keep up with the rapid growth and diversity of change within the MTC. Business Catalyst gives us this freedom and flexibility so HTDL can constantly develop the site to meet the MTC’s requirements for now and into the future.” (Andrew Hopkins)

HTDL has been working with Business Catalyst since 2011 and have found that the flexibility, power and reliability are key factors when showing the system to clients. “We find that being able to build and integrate virtually any front-end that is possible with the latest web technologies allows us to ensure the designs we produce translate extremely well on the BC platform.  When talking to clients about their project requirements we don’t have to think, can BC do this or that? In most cases we can show how we’ve already done the same for another client and how it has transformed their business.“ (Andrew Hopkins)

An advice for somebody who just started using BC, from the designer of MTC:

My advice for someone starting to use BC would be to ensure you have a good understanding of HTML5, Liquid Markup, jQuery, CSS and support frameworks like Bootstrap so that you can fully utilize the power of Business Catalyst. Use online forums and resource groups to learn new features. If a feature doesn’t exist, see if it can be adapted from another source and integrated into BC. Use Adobe Dreamweaver / Muse in conjunction with the online IDE to allow multiple team members to work on a site all at once, as well as synchronizing and backing up code.  Definitely ‘Think out of the box’. We have tried to continually push BC to its absolute limits often using dynamic generated CSS, JavaScript and JSON using Liquid Markup to bind them all into some very powerful features. The possibilities are immense if you have the drive and commitment to delve deeper into the platform.

HTDL is an award winning design agency creating brands and websites to transform business. Since 1988, they conceived, developed and delivered over 14,000 successful projects.

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Our section "Site of the week" promotes some of the best accomplished sites, hosted on our platform. If you too have designed a beautiful site that you are proud of, send us an e-mail to bcpartner-team(at)adobe(dot)com. It might become the next "Site of the Week"!