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IP.Nexus 1.5 Dev Update: Store & Billing Enhancements

Our last few blog entries on Nexus have talked about some of the larger changes we've been making to the storefront and how billing is handled.
In this blog entry, I wanted to go over some of the smaller changes we've made in these areas :smile:

Gift Vouchers

Starting with Nexus 1.5, customers can purchase gift vouchers, which can then be redeemed in your store.

If you have enabled this, when in the store, they'll see two new options underneath the package categories:

Customers will then be able to select a gift voucher amount from the options you have set in the Admin CP, or, if you have enabled it, enter their own amount:

Vouchers can either be emailed straight to the recipient or printed off. The voucher is given in the form of a code, which can then be entered into the store to redeem.
Nexus will keep track of who used vouchers purchased by whom and will show all this information in the normal customer history screen.

And of course, all this can be done from the mobile skin too:

Multiple Billing Cycles

IP.Nexus allows you to create recurring packages with whatever renewal terms you specify.
Sometimes though, you might want to give several different options - for example, let's say you wanted a package which costs $10 per month or $100 a year (or whatever).

In IP.Nexus 1.5, this is now possible. You can create as many different renewal options as you like:

When a customer goes to purchase a package which has more than one renewal option, a drop down will be displayed for them to select their desired renewal option:

Self Purchase Management

You're probably very familiar with getting support requests from customers who want to renew their purchase for a period of time in advance (we, for example, often get people asking to pay for a year's hosting) or cancel their purchase.

In IP.Nexus (provided you have enabled it), customers will be able to renew purchases for any length of time up to what you have allowed, and cancel their own purchases.

Bulk Discounts

Nexus currently has several options for providing discounts to certain customers:

  • Usergroup discounts can be used to give customers in certain groups a discount.
  • Loyalty discounts can be used to give customers who already own (or are purchasing) some of your products a discount.
  • Bundle discounts can be used to give customers a discount on their entire purchase if certain items are purchased in combination.

In Nexus 1.5, we're adding a new discount type which we call Bulk discounts. Bulk discounts can be used to give customers a discount on an individual product if they are purchasing it with certain other products.

In this manner, it can be used for "Buy one get one free" type deals:

In this example, the first of this item the customer adds to their cart will be full price, the second will be free, the third will be full price, the fourth will be free, and so on.
You could also do "Buy one get second half price" or "3 for the price of 2" style deals, and so on.

Grouped Renewals

Let's say you have a setup where you want to adjust the renewal fees for a product based on additional products that a customer has purchased.

Currently, there are two ways to do this.
You can set up add-ons as product options which adjust the renewal price of the package - however this isn't feasible if the add-ons also need access to support, downloads, etc.
Alternatively you could set the add-ons up as packages which must be associated with a parent and have their own renewal costs - however, this means that if a customer purchases an add-on at a later date, their renewals won't be at he same time, which can be inconvenient and confusing.

In IP.Nexus 1.5 we're adding the option for packages which can be associated with a parent package to have grouped renewals. This means that rather than having their own renewal dates, the renewal fees for add-on packages will be added on to the parent package.

Latest Products

The storefront in Nexus allows you to view featured products, popular products or browse by category.
In IP.Nexus 1.5, we've added an option to view the latest products.

Thumbnail Sizes

The thumbnails used in the IP.Nexus store are hardcoded to 100x100px. In IP.Nexus 1.5 you'll be able to set whatever thumbnail size you'd like to use.
When you adjust the setting, Nexus will set a flag on your products that the thumbnails need to be rebuilt, and this will be done on the fly as they're requested, so you don't need to sit around waiting for the images to rebuild.

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