Tip of the Week May 28, 2012
Volume: 2 | Issue: 21

New Display modes on your WebStore – say whhhhaaaaaat?

Depending on how you are logged in, the process of viewing titles on your WebStore has been enhanced with some improved display modes.

The store's ordering cart icon (previously a boring and ugly little square box) has been replaced with a button. You will also notice, that we have updated the “no cover available” image that is used when we have, sadly, not yet received a cover image from the publishers.

The Inventory Display option has been removed because your own on hand/sales inventory information is now shown automatically with the Detailed Display – assuming you have the “sales” permission enabled with your login. Also, the "consumer prices" area is now always shown even if you are logged in as the store – this is useful for when you are wondering why a certain price was used when giving an estimate to a customer for an online order.

NOTE: The Sales Display has been removed altogether. We tried tweaking it time and time again, and long story short, it just seemed like an overload of information - we doubt that anyone was finding this display useful, so we have removed it in an effort to keep things simple.

The Brief Display now shows Peer (consolidated) On Hand and On Order numbers. If a book has multiple prices (based on book condition), these will be more clearly identified. Each row is easier to align with the new alternating shades of green (or should that have been "shades of grey"?).

Optional PubStock price and availability column

While in Brief display you may have noticed the dropdown list of PubStock vendors – located to the left, underneath your different display options. After choosing a vendor, a series of columns will appear with the titles to show you the current PubStock status for all the titles listed. For example, you may be using TitleBrowser to view popular titles from a particular publisher but want to quickly spot the ones available through a wholesaler such as Raincoast or Monahan. We find this especially helpful here at Mosaic for when we are building orders to BookDepot (BKD). After several days of picking and choosing titles, we are ready to review the order – we select BKD from that dropdown menu, in the Order Processing - This allows us to quickly spot the titles they have since sold out and remove them from the order.

Play around with the different displays, see what works for you and let us know what you think – good AND bad!

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Adding Background Images and “Transparent” logo images to your WebStore!

We have now made it possible for you to add a custom background image to your WebStore. By default, the background color of your WebStore is automatically generated by examining the colors of your logo image and generating a color match to the colors found in the four corners of your logo image. This works well to provide a complementary background color, but it’s not very exciting. Many people asked for the ability to add a custom image to the background of their site to make it look more visually appealing.

At the same time, we expanded the graphic file types we can accept to include PNG image files. This type of image file is widely used, and it allows images to have a transparent or semi-transparent background, which is important if you want your logo image to look like it is sitting “on top” of another image.

In the example below, we’ve used a tiling chalkboard image for the background, and a PNG logo image with white letters / graphic on a transparent background:

Background Specifications

  • Background images will tile automatically.
  • Background images are positioned starting from the top left of the screen.
  • Since you have no idea what resolution someone will be browsing with, it’s a good idea to make sure the image has seamless edges (meaning that when they are up next to each other, you won't be able to tell where one ends and the other begins).   Another option is to have the image very wide (2000 pixels or higher).
  • If you have a very wide image, you will likely want to make the image at least 1700 pixels tall (try to have the bottom of the image as seamless to the top of the image as the page could get very tall depending on the type of search the customer is doing).
  • Having said all this about image dimensions, it is best to keep your image size (in bytes) as small as you can.  The larger the image is, the longer it will take to load.  Even though the WebStore will not limit the size of the file,  800K should be the maximum size.

Where to Find Background Images

Background images can be found all over the web.  Doing a Google search of "repeating background" will bring up millions of results.  We have found the best backgrounds are textures (paper, fabric, chalkboards, etc.)  These types of images are all over the web and provide a nice design element without conflicting with anything on your site.

Logo Specifications

  • It is a good idea not to have your site logo taller than 150 pixels or longer than 700 pixels.
  • If you will want your logo image to have a transparent background so it blends seamlessly with your background image, you will need to upload a PNG with a transparent background.  If you currently have a logo on a white or solid background and would like it to have a transparent background please let us know.  For a $25.00 fee we can take an existing JPG image and turn it into a transparent background PNG.  If you have your logo in another format which supports transparent background (PDF, PSD, AI etc.) we can convert the image for no fee.
  • We can also provide stores with graphic design for their WebStore (banner and blurb design).  Information such as phone number, address, store hours etc. can be easily added to your logo.  This type of design work is quoted on a per store basis depending on the amount of work needed. Please contact carley@bookmanager.com for more info.  

Uploading Background and Logo Images to the WebStore

The process of uploading the logo image onto your site has not changed, other than we now accept the PNG file type. Simply click on the “Setup” link on the top toolbar of the site, then select “Uploads.” At the bottom of the Uploads page is the area where you can browse your computer for your image file. Once the file is selected, you use the reserved filename of “logo.jpg” or “logo.png” to tell the site that the selected image should be used as the logo image. The process is the same for the background image, except the reserved filename to use is “background.jpg” or “background.png.” (You can also upload these images through the Setup & Site settings option.)

If you need a hand uploading images to your site or have any questions about the new background and logo image options, please don’t hesitate to contact us!