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Unsure of whats next after MagentoGo?

  
  
  
  
  

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       Have you grown your business on MagentoGo? Caught blindsided by the recent announcement that MagentoGo will be discontinued as of Feb 1, 2015? If you remain with Magento can you trust that they will be dedicated to supporting the growth of your business? Unsure if BigCommerce is the right platform for you?

     As a leading implementer of E-Commerce Solutions, RailsDog understands the concerns that you may have.  We understand the frustration that this situation may cause for you, and at the same time would like to invite you to consider the SpreeCommerce platform as your migration path from MagentoGo.  Regardless of the size of your business, there is a solution based on SpreeCommerce that is right for you.  From a fully managed cloud based solution, to a bespoke deployment, we can partner with you to grow your online business.

     SpreeCommerce is the choice of many leading global brands,such as Bonobos, Chipotle, TommyJohn and more.  With more than 20,000 online storefronts, you can be confident that Spree is a solid choice for the next phase of your online commerce presence.  RailsDog has the experience and talent to guide you through your transition from MagentoGo.  Together with our partner ninefold we are able to offer you a fully managed solution that will give you greater flexibility and control over your digital storefront.  RailsDog and ninefold have spent a considerable amount of time optimising the system to provide a better product.  ninefold’s platform was built with a specific focus on making sure that each user has a superior experience with each request.

     The world of online commerce has changed greatly in a very short amount of time.  The percentage of sales driven by mobile devices is increasing at a rate faster than many industry analysts predicted.  Moving to the Spree Platform is a great opportunity to update your online presence with features such as responsive design and a single page checkout.   Take control of your online commerce strategy and drive your levels of conversion to record highs. Contact sales@railsdog.com to learn more about why how RailsDog and ninefold can work together to replace your existing MagentoGo store.


TAP into your town

  
  
  
  
  

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        The Goal of our current client " The Alternative Press", is hyperlocal news at the click of a button. The company started out in New Providence,NJ. Their goal is to create an alternative to the town paper you get every week. The Alternative press has now expanded into 30 communities and is growing and expanding each month. It is a very useful tool where news of bad weather or other community alerts can be sent out fast, much faster than a newspaper can, and more locally than a company like NJ.com.

    Rails Dog is proud to be part of the company's rebranding. The Alternative Press is expanding across NJ as TAPinto.net. We are working with them to both redesign their website, and to increase the performance of the site to reduce loading times. New for 2014 will be a dedicated mobile site; Over 40% of the TAPinto viewers are now using mobile devices.

   click here to learn more about TAPinto.net, and to see what they look like before they get a Rails Dog makeover. The release data for the project is now set for July 2014, so check back soon to see the finished product. Also when looking for your town on the TAPinto.net website, if you do not see it there, contact them for franchising opportunities so that you can bring hyperlocal news to your town.

 

“Storytelling Through Content” By Daniel Honig and Thomas Van Deyen

  
  
  
  
  

Daniel Honig, CTO of Rails Dog, and, Thomas Van Deyen, CTO of Magic Labs (the European partner of Rails Dog) teamed up to create one of SpreeConf 2014’s most compelling presentations, “Storytelling Through Content with Spree,” and it is now live!

In their speech, Daniel and Thomas detailed the difficulties of e-commerce, such as management of orders, shipments and payments, and why, in Daniel’s words, there are two kinds of customers: those that are using the Spree platform, and those that wish they were using Spree. Specifically, the duo break down the four pillars of e-commerce: commerce, content, community, and context, and how Spree can help your e-commerce business tell compelling story.

Click Here to Read More

U.S. online retail sales will grow 57% by 2018

  
  
  
  
  

The web in 2018 will account for 11% of total retail sales, up from 8% in 2013, according to a new Forrester Research e-retail forecast.

U.S. e-retail sales are expected to grow from $263 billion in 2013 to $414 billion in 2018, a compound annual growth rate of 9.5%, according to a new online retail sales forecast from Forrester Research Inc.released today. E-retail’s share of total retail sales will continue to inch upward, from 8% in 2013 to 11% in 2018. The dollar growth from the actual 2013 figure of $263 billion to the forecast $414 billion for 2018 is 57.4%.

Contact Rails Dog today to learn more about how we can help get your store online.

Click here to read the original Internet Retailer article

Having issues with the latest FedEx API changes? We can help #FedEx #spree_active_shipping

  
  
  
  
  

Here at Rails Dog HQ, we are seeing ongoing reports in the wild about the effects that the FedEx API changes have had on the spree_active_shipping extension. Some sites have let this situation go on for a while now, and didnt even realize that it was a problem.

If you're having issues with FedEx shipments and need some help, please send us an e-mail at support@Railsdog.com and we can get one of our developers to help out.

Shuffleboard tonight at 6pm in Brooklyn? #magiclabs #RoyalPalmsClub #SpreeConf

  
  
  
  
  

Hey SpreeConf attendees, not ready to head back home yet? Stop by and say hello to Rails Dog and Magiclabs and have a beer and play some shuffleboard indoors of course. 6pm tonight at Royal Palms in Brooklyn: http://www.royalpalmsshuffle.com/

#magiclabs #RoyalPalmsClub #SpreeConf

Storytelling With Content: Introducing Narrator

  
  
  
  
  

Story is a fundamental form through which we experience and make sense of our world and ourselves, a function that cognitive scientists believe is hard-wired into the human brain. Storytelling, or narrative, refers to both the ‘what’ (setting, characters, events etc.) and the ‘how’ (organization and presentation of story elements).

A good storyteller has the power to transport audiences to a different world. This is why our best storytellers (novelists, film directors, playwrights, animators etc.) are so venerated.

Story rewards at both an emotional and cognitive level. Why do we all like a good story? (seven basic appeals)

1) Escapism (being transported to a different world)
2) Exploration (learning about a new place)
3) Identification (living vicariously through characters) 4) Stimulation (having our emotions excited)
5) Intimacy (creating a special bond with a narrator) 6) Comprehension (making sense of a situation)
7) Resolution (seeing conflicts overcome)

This is universal.

Application to E-Commerce:

How can the incredible power of storytelling be harnessed for e-commerce?

  • Lead your target customers into ‘story worlds’ they find appealing, and like to explore, so they become intimately familiar with the products you’re offering.
  • Make these ‘story worlds’ unique and believable so customers will want to keep returning.
  • Present characters your customers can identify with and project themselves onto so they have a direct stake in the action.
  • Develop story concepts and situations that elicit emotional responses from your customers that are likely to lead to purchase.
  • Use narration to create a space of sharing and bonding with the customer that builds trust.
  • Satisfy your customer’s desire to make sense of what’s going on in a given story world.
  • Give your customer the comforting illusion of closure, the feeling of problems being solved. 

Storytelling is the foundation of any brand that wants to survive in today's hyper competitive retail world. Stories create emotion and engagement, and without those you have little brand loyalty and it is a race to the lowest price in a commodity world. Content + Commerce is much stronger than commerce alone; Content + Commerce + Community + Context is stronger still. 

Together with our Europe team, today we are announcing a new presentation layer for SpreeCommerce. It is called Narrator and it is the next generation ecommerce CMS. This e-commerce breakthrough will change the way brands represent themselves online!  

All shop systems lacked the opportunity to fully edit a product detail page (PDP) or category pages. Integrating the Alchemy CMS in the Spree Commerce system gives the editor full freedom in presenting each product exactly the way it is best sold. There will be nothing in their way of telling their unique story.  

But we thought of more: What if editing the PDP wasn’t enough? What if you wanted to respond to each unique customer group in a different, more personalized way? These are puzzles we want to solve with Narrators key features: 

  • Template Engine
  • Content Repository
  • Internationalization
  • Personalization / Analytics
  • Editorial Workflow

We are looking forward to getting your feedback and getting in touch with you. Enter the mailing list on Narrator.io or send us an email!

A new cooperation: Rails Dog Europe

  
  
  
  
  

After starting off with our new office in London we now proudly present our partner for Rails Dog Europe: magic labs*. We used their content management system Alchemy CMS along with SpreeCommerce for a lot of our clients, e.g. Aloha, because we feel it is by far the best RoR CMS and gives us the freedom and flexibility to tell rich stories for our clients. While working together we discovered that the upcoming needs of our clients are to present their product in an emotional way and that the combination of the two systems SpreeCommerce and Alchemy is the best tool to do just that. 

magic labs* dedicated a lot of work in developing Alchemy CMS and contributing to the open source community. They have an office in Berlin and Hamburg and strongly believe in high quality code and the power of the community to get the most innovative results. 

We combined our experience with and knowledge about Spree shops with their expertise and skills in Alchemy to create the future of e-commerce we see is possible: An easier way of telling your story, a better way of responding to your customers and the only way to truly show the uniqueness of your brand.

The Rails Dog Europe team will be with us at the SpreeConf and we are looking forward to meeting the Spree community at this special event! Ask @tvdeyen, @robinboening or @moritzs for Alchemy CMS stickers, see you there!

Rails Dog welcomes everyone to SPREECONF NYC 2014

  
  
  
  
  

Rails Dog is looking forward to having you in New York City and exchanging experiences about projects and all kinds of matters surrounding the framework and community at the SPREECONF on Feb 26-27th. We are always interested in meeting new people and are more than happy to share with you where to find the best restaurants and drinks in town. If you haven’t been to New York before don’t hesitate to ask us! Rails Dog contributed a lot into the Spree community in the past and with our new office in the UK and more to come we are planning to continue this deep investment in the Spree community. 

Rails Dog announces expansion into the U.K.

  
  
  
  
  

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Rails Dog is proud to announce the launch of our London office: 89 New Bond Street, London, England. Rails Dog is working with a large online U.K. retailer, and we currently have a team of developers working on site for our client. We are excited to now be able to service our U.K. customers with a local team in London.

 

Rails Dog has a full time dedicated staff of developers who have worked exclusively with Spree based projects for years. In addition to having a developer who is a member of the Spree Core Team (he commits code directly to the Spree project), the members of the Rails Dog team have authored and now support many of the popular Spree extensions.


Overview of the work being done on U.K. Retailer Project


Our team is working to implement a Multi-Currency, Multi-Language, and Multi-Store solution. Rails Dog is also helping to migrate their existing PHP platform (as well as the team members) to Spree & Ruby on Rails. This involves helping to train the PHP team on several topics and best practices. Topics that the team are being trained on include Git, Ruby, Rails, Spree, Test Driven Development, Continuous Deployment, and coding style guidelines.


Unique Features Being Developed for the U.K. Retailer Project


Price Books:


We have implemented the concept of a “Price Book” to give full control over product pricing with respect to the store, currency, date, and type of customer. In the Spree admin application, we allow list prices and discount prices to be managed for different currencies, stores, subsets of products, date ranges, and subsets of users.  


Price books have a hierarchical priority which ensures the correct price is always determined for a particular browsing scenario and price books can either be explicitly-priced (manually entered) or ‘factored’ (based on a multiplier of a ‘parent’ price book). Listed below is an example:


A ‘March 2014 Sale’ price book could have a factor of 0.75 which would reduce its parent’s price book prices at a 25% discount. The price book could have a date range as well.  In the case of this March example, it would make sense to set the window for all of March 2014 so that it would automatically take effect at the appropriate time.


It is also possible to use the price factor in order to automatically maintain currency exchange rates. You may update the price books factor to the current exchange rate each day, or set it to always maintain a fixed exchange rate.


Split Payments and Vouchers as Payments:


We have introduced vouchers as first-class-citizens in the payment realm. We created a ‘Voucher’ payment method with an associated ‘gateway’ which allows us to authorize, capture, void, and credit a voucher. Along with vouchers as payments, we have begun supporting multiple payments per order on the front end. Currently we are supporting multiple payments by voucher and one other non-voucher payment. This concept can easily be made more generic and submitted to the Spree Core Team for consideration as a generic split-payment solution.


Please feel free to send us an e-mail to learn more about this project: Sales@RailsDog.com


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