[intro]In this Guide, you can learn all about Labs, how to give your feedback on functionality and how to get a sneak peek at the Features due for release on the EKM online shop platform. [/intro]
Labs is brought to you by our Development Team where you can see what projects they’re working on at the moment and if you choose, you can try these out for yourself before their official release date. When a new Feature for the EKM online shop platform reaches the final phases of creation, our Development Team will add it to EKM Labs, and you can decide if you’d like to have a sneak peek and try it out on your own EKM online shop.
Features added to Labs are in what is referred to as ‘beta testing’. This means that the individual features have been created by our Development Team, tested internally and are in the very final stages of production.
Why not just release the Feature when it’s completed?
Because - most importantly - we want your feedback. There are thousands of EKM online shops, and no two are the same. How content is displayed and settings configured varies wildly from one shop to another, for myriad reasons. It’s this uniqueness we want to use to our advantage; we test new features and functionality ourselves, but ultimately, we’re doing this internally, with people who know the platform inside out. Once you’ve learned something, it’s very difficult to unlearn it, so we need to hear experiences from our customers so we can incorporate their expectations and experiences into our new releases.
Why not just have a ‘road map’ of when things are going to be released?
Although in the ideal world, we'd love to provide this kind of information, in reality, it's not very practical at all because of the nature of updates and releases themselves and how fluid the process needs to be to create them. When new features or functionality is scoped out, constructed and built, it goes through several Teams for testing before release. Sometimes this process can take longer than first anticipated, due to a bug, more functionality being required, or a whole host of other different parameters. If we had a visual roadmap, this would constantly need updating with all of the different projects our Development Team has on the go (which would potentially take developers away from creating) and would also tie up our Customer Support Team answering enquiries about why release dates had been changed (when they would be better served to answer technical questions and providing account-specific support).
We believe Labs is the best of both worlds; those who want to know what new Features we’re currently working on can see what’s listed and those who want a sneak peek can install the Feature on their EKM online shop during the beta testing phase.
Currently in Labs
A whole new version of the classic Advanced Inventory Manager includes an improved layout with dedicated pages for Stock Adjustment and bulk editing of your products. You can also see at a glance a list of your best-selling products, any hidden products, and any items that are currently out of stock:
The New Orders Section
Take a sneak peek at the new version of the Orders Page, designed to make managing your orders even easier than before! Create Quotes and send customers links to pre-populated carts, customise your Invoices, manually add and edit discounts and lots more:
1. From the Dashboard, click the Settings tab:
2. On the Settings page, scroll down and click and beneath the Shop settings header on the left-hand side, you need to click Labs at the very bottom of the list:
3. This will redirect you to the Labs page, which looks like this. Any new features that our Development Team is currently working on are listed here:
4. If you wish to try one of the new features, simply click the switch on the far right-hand side:
5. You'll then see a window appear. Follow the directions within it:
6. When the feature has been installed on your EKM online shop, you can then locate it on the Features tab, with the rest of your Installed Features:
Frequently Asked Questions
Where does my feedback go?
We love your feedback! It is essential for us to be able to improve these beta Features before release onto the EKM online shop platform. We need as much feedback as possible to help us identify what does and does not work for your business. You can send us your feedback by filling in the HotJar popup shown at the bottom-left of your screen on the Labs page.
Primarily, your feedback will go to the UX/UI Team; you can read more about them in this Guide. They will take the feedback received from EKM online shop owners who are using the new Features in Labs and analyse that data. That can result in the Feature having extra functionality added or amended before it is fully released onto the EKM online shop platform.
Why are there still some issues with these new Features?
Because they’re in the beta testing phase, which means they have been tested internally. This could result in some small changes - such as amending default text or design - which may still need to be done. By allowing EKM online shop owners to access these Features early on, we can take their feedback on board too and incorporate this into the final version of the Feature.
How do I turn off a new Feature?
Simply click the switch on the far right-hand side of the Feature in the list on the Labs page to uninstall it from your EKM online shop.
Do I have to install the Features in Labs?
Not at all! If you don’t want to use the new Feature whilst it’s still in the beta testing phase, you don’t have to. Simply wait for the new Feature to appear on your Features page when it has had its official release.
[contact] If you need our help with your EKM online shop, contact your Account Manager or Customer Support, who will be able to point you in the right direction. We're open from 8am-6pm weekdays and 9am-5.30pm on the weekends. If you'd like to suggest a feature or an upgrade on any of the EKM platforms, please let us know on the EKM Suggestions board. If you have a non-account specific question ask the EKM Team, join us in EKM Community. [/contact]