OFBiz Tutorial – Direct Updates for CMS Static Pages

OFBiz Tutorial series covering the ease of updates for CMS Static pages using Apache OFBiz. OFBiz is an open source ERP and enterprise eCommerce platform with a highly adaptable and powerful interface making it ideal for any type of company doing business on the web. Where commercial ERP software requires your company to bend to their platform, OFBiz bends to yours.

Direct Updates for CMS Static Pages | OFBiz Tutorials

In my last post I showed you how to set up the OFBiz Content Management System (CMS) to easily update static pages on your enterprise eCommerce website. In this post I will expand on this tool.

Using the CMS application, you can allow a client or developer to make direct changes to static pages. The steps involved in this can be shown to clients after the static content setup is completed by the developers and the site is online.

  1. Login to the backend management application using https://localhost:8443/content/control/main
  2. From the menu, select “content”.
  3. Under “search options” in the empty box in the “content ID” row enter the search criteria you wish to use, such as “STORE_POLICIES”.  Results will come back with a list of contents matching your search query.
  4. Click on the page name “STORE_POLICIES” under the “Data Resource ID” column.
  5. You will now be able to click on the “TEXT” or “HTML” link to view/edit text/html.  An html editor allows insertion of code and a text editor works much like a basic word processing program.
  6. Edit the desired text and click “update”.  The page is now updated on the site.

As you can see, once a page is live, updating content is a breeze with the CMS application and requires no additional input of complicated code. To view screenshots for this tuorial, visit: http://www.hotwaxmedia.com/apache-ofbiz-blog/category/ofbiz-tutorials/.

Enterprise eCommerce with Apache OFBiz allows the user to devote more time, energy and money toward running their business.  Companies don’t get bogged down with obsessively managing their eCommerce platform thanks to the ease of the OFBiz user interface.  Businesses can also find comfort in the fact that they are backed by a worldwide community of professional developers who are constantly striving to keep OFBiz on the cutting edge.


OFBiz Tutorials – How to Create CMS Static Pages

This OFBiz Tutorial article will quickly and easily guide you through the process of creating CMS pages. Apache OFBiz open-source eCommerce and ERP software solution is for companies doing business on the web. OFBiz is a top level project of the Apache Software Foundation ensuring it’s users that they will be running cutting edge software managed by some of the most skilled developers in the business.

CMS Static Pages | OFBiz Tutorial

By using the OFBiz Content Management System (CMS) for front end static pages, clients can easily change text shown on static easily without code changes.  This is a very useful tool for updating pages such as “FAQ’s” or “About Us” etc.

In this OFBiz tutorial we will cover the following:

  • DataResource and Content record.
  • setup content data in order to embed FTL markup.
  • setup content driven screen and use it show the static content setup in data.

Note: “cmsdemo” will be used for component in this tutorial

Step 1:

Define a DataResource to represent the text. You can store long texts in the textDataField which allows for a lot of flexibility.  This needs to be done in advance using the dataTemplateTypeId attribute for embedding FTL markup directives, etc.  The purpose is to allow Freemaker instructions to execute prior to rendering the screen.

Set up the following code in a data file:

<DataResource dataResourceId="DS_EXAMPLE" dataResourceTypeId="ELECTRONIC_TEXT" dataTemplateTypeId="FTL"/>
<ElectronicText dataResourceId="DS_EXAMPLE">
<h1>CMS DEMO</h1>
<h2>This is the text that will appear on screen.</h2>

Step 2:

Content Record creation. note: Content Records remain the same regardless of the data resource

<Content contentId="CN_EXAMPLE" contentTypeId="DOCUMENT" contentName="Content 01" dataResourceId="DS_EXAMPLE"/>

Step 3:

With the following directive we are able to include content in the screen definition section.

<screen name="main">
<content content-id="CN_EXAMPLE"/>

Step 4:

To run the content driven screen, place an entry in the ofbiz-component file (data file created earlier in step 1).

<entity-resource type="data" reader-name="demo" loader="main" location="data/CmsDemoDemoData.xml"/>

Step 5:

Define main request in controller file.

<request-map uri="main"><security https="false" auth="false"/><response name="success" type="view" value="main"/></request-map>

By opening the [https://localhost:8443/cmsdemo/control/main] request you will see a page that displays “CMS DEMO This is the text that will appear on screen”.

Now you will simply change the text in the data file any time you want to update your screen.  In additional OFBiz tutorials I will cover how to make quick updates to static CMS pages.

Enterprise eCommerce with Apache OFBiz can suit companies of all sizes who are selling any product or service.  Because of OFBiz’s flexibility, it is an ideal solution for businesses that have their eye on the horizon and are looking to continually grow and expand.

OFBiz Tutorial – Enterprise eCommerce Partnering

OFBiz Tutorial article discussing the importance of partnerships, how they compliment Apache OFBiz and expand your businesses capabilities.  Apache OFBiz is a suite of enterprise eCommerce and ERP applications and is a top level project at the Apache Software Foundation.  OFBiz is a highly competitive, open source alternative to commercial eCommerce and ERP applications.

Partnerships are integral to optimizing any business and this datum remains true when working with software platforms and developers.  The partnerships that HotWax Systems has been forging are allowing us to focus on customer service and support rather than trying to handle every aspect of eCommerce development and implementation.

Contegix for managed hosting has greatly simplified our business by offering our clients highly professional hosting and infrastructure services services.  Allowing us to focus more on OFBiz development, project oversight and customer needs.  Through working with Contegix, we have acquired partnerships that have helped us to further streamline our operations and generate more efficiency, all which translates to better service and reduced costs for our customers.

Using Atlassian for management tools and CustomWare for integration and collaboration, we have refined our processes and offered our clients full service and support using software and companies at the top of their game.

The following is a list of our partnerships and what they do for us, and the client.

  • Contegix – Managed Hosting and Infrastructure Support.
  • Atlassian – Efficiency and Management Tools.
  • CustomWare – Integration and Collaboration Solutions.
  • Our Process – Development Processes to Work in a Distributed, Multi-Cultural, Development Environment.

Enterprise eCommerce offers unlimited potential for a companies expansion and profitability.  Customers can be reached globally, 24 hours a day 7 days a week.  By integrating the right software platforms and professional partnerships you can count on a powerful and flexible solution to your enterprise eCommerce needs.

OFBiz Tutorials – Auto Generation of FAQ Summary Links with Prototype JS

OFBiz Tutorials are an easy place for users to learn more about the Apache OFBiz software giving them more control over how their platform operates and saving costs by handling system changes and upgrades in-house. Apache Open For Business is a top level project of the Apache Software Foundation. It is an open-source enterprise eCommerce software suite that is an economical and practical alternative to commercial ERP applications.

Auto FAQ with Prototype JS | OFBiz Tutorial

In our experience at HotWax Systems, the more processes that can be automated with OFBiz the better for the user. Automated processes give the user more control as well as freeing us up to work on more complex implementation and configuration. The FAQ’s page is a staple of many enterprise eCommerce websites and needs to be modified regularly. By using a Prototype JS script to generate FAQ summary links, time consuming code and data entry can be avoided as well as mistakes that arise from excessive code entry.

Here we will use a Prototype JS script to automatically generate FAQ summary links by parsing the DOM for those links.

First, we’ll list our questions in standard Definition List format. (HTML)

<dl id="faqs">
<dt><a>What is this?</a></dt>
<dd>This is standard definition list markup</dd>
<dt><a>What is the purpose of this example?</a></dt>
<dd>To show you how easy it is to generate your FAQ link summary with a little bit of javascript</dd>
<dt><a>Who should I contact for all of my enterprise eCommerce needs?</a></dt>
<dd>HotWax Systems, of course.</dd>

You’ll notice that each question lives inside an anchor tag with a class name of “question”. There is also an unordered list above the questions with an ID of “questions” which is important for the next step. (JAVASCRIPT)

document.observe('dom:loaded', function(){
		var id = ele.innerHTML.unescapeHTML().gsub(/[^\w- ]/, '').gsub(/[\s-]+/, '-').toLowerCase();
		ele.writeAttribute({id: id});
		var link = new Element('a', {href: '#'+id})
			.observe('click', function(event){
		$('questions').insert(new Element('li').insert(link));

So the code above looks a little confusing but it works like this, first, using the $$ shortcut method in Prototype, we are able loop through each “question”, read the innerHTML of the tag, strip out the whitespace between each word, and replace the spaces with dashes. This string for each link is given a variable name of “id”. Now we assign this variable back to the link, writing it in as an ID attribute. Next, a link is created for each “question” – for this we’ll give each href the “id” variable with a # sign prepending it. Lastly we go to the unordered list and create a list item for each new link with the link inserted inside of it.

The questions markup looks like this after the page rendering. (HTML)

<ul id="questions">
	<li><a href="#what-is-this">What is this?</a></li>
	<li><a href="#what-is-the-purpose-of-this-example">What is the purpose of this example?</a></li>
	<li><a href="#who-should-i-contact-for-all-of-my-ofbiz-needs">Who should I contact for all of my OFBiz needs?</a></li>
<dl id="faqs">
<dt><a id="what-is-this">What is this?</a></dt>
<dd>This is standard definition list markup</dd>
<dt><a id="what-is-the-purpose-of-this-example">What is the purpose of this example?</a></dt>
<dd>To show you how easy it is to generate your FAQ link summary with a little bit of javascript</dd>
<dt><a id="who-should-i-contact-for-all-of-my-ofbiz-needs">Who should I contact for all of my OFBiz needs?</a></dt>
<dd>HotWax Systems, of course.</dd>

Now with some CSS styling we are done! (CSS)

#questions {margin:0}
#questions li {padding:0 0 5px;}
#questions li a {color:#333}
#questions li a:hover {color:#000}
#faqs dt {margin:30px 0 0;}
#faqs dt a {color:#333; font-size:15px}
#faqs dd {border-bottom:1px solid #ddd; margin:0; padding:0 30px 30px 0; position:relative;}
#faqs dd span {position:absolute; bottom:0; right:0; color:#ccc;}
#faqs dd span a {font-weight:normal; font-size:11px;}

Fast and easy ; )

Enterprise eCommerce with Apache OFBiz offers a multitude of solutions that will enhance and simplify your eCommerce platform. Your customers will enjoy their interface with your website, managers will enjoy the ease with which reports can be run and data compiled, stocking, shipping and returns become automated which all results in an ideal setting for a company to thrive.

OFBiz Tutorial – ApacheCon 2009

OFBiz Tutorial articles feature not only practical application and code for using OFBiz, but also keep the enterprise eCommerce community aware of what is happening in the Apache OFBiz community of developers and users. In late 2009, the Apache Software Foundation celebrated it’s 10th anniversary at ApacheCon in Oakland California. For the event, a number of companies came out including Microsoft and Thawte as platinum sponsors, SourceForge joined HotWax Systems as gold sponsors and other sponsors included HP, LinkedIn, Sun and many more!

During the course of the conference, Apache highlighted the contributions offered by their open-source contributors and enhancements to their various projects. It is a great chance for professionals to meet and discuss the future of Apache products including (of course) Apache Open For Business (OFBiz).

Apache OFBiz is a broadly scoped open-source ERP framework which is a top level project at Apache. OFBiz is an incredible front-end enterprise eCommerce software suite that also has back-end capabilities designed to integrate and automate business systems and processes. OFBiz is gaining popularity among many users because it places a variety of features into a single framework. Processes such as supplier/ inventory/ order management, accounting, manufacturing and more make this a highly useful and flexible solution for eCommerce.

Having OFBiz as a top-level project means that Apache has the most gifted and professional developers involved in the project. Apache manages the project efficiently in order to allow developers to focus on individual projects and deliver top quality results. Because of this structure, we have a network of friendly competition and cooperation all aimed at creating world class software.

HotWax Systems works hand in hand with the Apache Software Foundation, contributing thousands of hours each year to the project. There are dozens of Apache projects going on at any given time, from OFBiz, to the Apache Web Server which serves over half of all web sites worldwide. Apache wouldn’t be able to accomplish all of this without working with some of the most brilliant minds in the industry.

Enterprise eCommerce continues to sit at the forefront of global commerce. It is the future of the successful buying and selling of goods. For more information on how you can get your business involved, contact HotWax Systems at877-736-4080.

OFBiz Tutorials – Small to Mid-Sized Enteprise eCommerce Companies

OFBiz Tutorials series elucidating the various benefits of Apache OFBiz. OFBiz is an open-source suite of software for enterprise eCommerce and ERP solutions. In this post we will discuss how OFBiz can benefit and work with small to mid-sized companies.

OFBiz Tutorial | Solutions for Small to Mid-Sized Business

When contemplating placing your company online and entering the world of eCommerce, it can seem extremely daunting. It’s easy to go online and see other businesses with their enterprise eCommerce storefronts set up, but how exactly does one go about doing that? Where is the road map? If you already have your company on the web and are operating via system emails and a largely manual paper driven concern, you will find that you soon grow out of this method and need something more sophisticated. Fortunately, OFBiz can help you with your enterprise eCommerce.

OFBiz is an out-of-the-box suite of applications that can help you to manage every aspect of your enterprise eCommerce operation. There are 16 applications available and 8700 database objects currently available to run on OFBiz. Each year this number grows as the worldwide community of OFBiz developers are constantly improving and honing how well the program suits the needs of it’s users. This may sound overwhelming, but with the backing of an OFBiz developer like HotWax Systems, the flexibility of OFBiz can be utilized to conform the program to your specific needs.

With OFBiz you can begin by using only the aspects of the program that are necessary for your current operations. Because OFBiz has no license fees, you aren’t paying for portions of the program that you aren’t using. As your company grows and your enterprise eCommerce needs mature, you will use more and more of the program on a gradual basis. The benefit to OFBiz is no matter how small you start out, the platform will grow with you, remain flexible and continue to meet your needs.

Enterprise eCommerce is opening the door for companies to reach a broad customer base, offer a wide range of products, and do it all without having to bother with a walk in store open to the public. More and more people are growing accustomed to shopping on the web and this will only increase. By using OFBiz you are keeping your business visible and competitive.

OFBiz Tutorial – Project Management Solutions

OFBiz Tutorial series discuss how to use Apache OFBiz, it’s benefits as a successful enterprise eCommerce platform and other issues related to running and implementing the OFBiz framework. In this article we will discuss a broad subject, project management. This is important for ERP companies using OFBiz and also contains valuable information for any platform you are using.

Project Management is the cornerstone of any business. It is the framework by which a company develops, creates strategies and implements new phases of service and growth. Professional and organized project management can make or bread new projects and has a lasting impact on the company as a whole. Choosing project management tools is a serious business.

HotWax Systems has begun working with a suite of project management tools that (after trial and error with some other software suites) we believe is the most comprehensive and effective, the Atlassian suite of tools. Over the past year, Atlassian has made many advances that seem extremely relevant to enterprise eCommerce.

Atlassian readily protects access to applications and source code, manages documents and documentation, shows SVN changesets, performs code review, development work-flows and much more. They offer an extensive suite of applications that make a solid foundation for whatever project you’re working on.

Some notable tools that HotWax is currently implementing are:

1. Crowd – centralized single sign on – permissions and access – easily pluggable to a variety of applications
2. Confluence – document management and collaboration
3. FishEye – real time reporting of source code repository changes
4. Crucible – code and document review
5. JIRA – project management and tracking

We will maintain regular updates on our experience with this software, it’s benefits and uses for enterprise eCommerce companies.

Enterprise eCommerce is an exciting new industry that truly is the wave of the future with regards to commerce. As the internet reaches more households, people are becoming more comfortable with transacting the majority of their business online. In fact, once a person discovers enterprise eCommerce, it becomes their preferred method of doing business. For companies to truly compete, eCommerce is the solution and Apache OFBiz is the premier software to use.

OFBiz Tutorial – Enterprise eCommerce Shipping Integration

OFBiz tutorial series covering HotWax Systems contributions over 2009 to the Apache Open For Business (OFBiz) Project. OFBiz is an open source enterprise eCommerce platform created by the Apache Software Foundation. There are developers and professionals all over the world contributing to this project making OFBiz one of the most powerful platforms for conducting enterprise eCommerce. In this tutorial we will highlight shipping integration.

Shipping Integration | OFBiz Tutorial

Throughout 2009, some of the largest users of Apache OFBiz placed focus on integrating and updating shipping options. They have taken the needs of their business and we have configured and improved OFBiz to meet those needs.  This is a boon for all users of OFBiz as everyone can benefit from the changes we have made.  HotWax has focused  on implementing new aspects of UPS standard web service, UPS World Ship, USPS standard web service, FedEx and Endicia.

The following is a list of integrations and improvements:

  • UPS integration support for sending “Shipment Return Label” email to customer. This option will be available on order detail screen and as well on the return screen when order is in the “Completed” status and the return is in the “Accepted” status. This will greatly streamline returns processing and save man hours.
  • Functionality which will give online shipping charges from UPS if an order is in the “Approved” status with associated shipment in the “Picked” status in the event it is held due to a shipping charges overage from the “Weight Package” screen.
  • Improved ability for UPS shipping quotes based on dimensions of a package.
  • New custom component that integrates OFBiz with existing “UPS World Ship” terminals.
  • Increased support for USPS international rate estimates and label printing options.
  • New custom component to integrate OFBiz with the Endicia services. This provides options and features that are not supported with USPS web services. This ensures that your customers are able to configure shipping to meet any need they have.
  • Built and installed a custom component that will integrate OFBiz with the new FedEx web services. This provides additional features that were not provided by the FedEx SDK version.

Enterprise eCommerce with Apache OFBiz will keep you competing in the electronic marketplace.  OFBiz is an open source software project that remains competitive with commercial ERP applications but saves it’s users considerable capital that can be devoted to other aspects of their company. OFBiz Tutorials are readily available giving users up to date information on changes to OFBiz as well as step by step use of it’s applications.  For more information, contact HotWax Systems at 877-736-4080.

OFBiz Tutorials – HotWax Systems OFBiz Contributions for Enterprise eCommerce Part 3

OFBiz Tutorials contain a wealth of information on how to use as well as improve on your Apache OFBiz framework. Apache OFBiz (Open For Business) is an open source enterprise eCommerce project that has professionals and developers from all over the globe contributing. In this OFBiz Tutorial series, we are highlighting contributions from HotWax Systems throughout 2009.

The third installment of this series focuses on OFBiz ERP related components, specifically:

  • Accounting
  • Manufacturing and Facility Management

Accounting | OFBiz Tutorials

The OFBiz Accounting Manager has had a lot of improvements lately.  HotWax has been closely involved in that process and offered the following contributions throughout last year.

  • Ability to generate a PDF for the AcctgTrans and related AcctgTransEntry.
  • Users can now void a payment.
  • Fix on the accounting invoice section the InvoiceSubBar Menu.
  • New ability to receive payments in A/R batches.
  • Commission Invoice fix to show correct price and quantity.
  • Added a screen under Accounts Payable -> Invoice, which will search for a purchase invoice within a given date range.
  • New JUnit test cases for Accounts Receivable -> Batch Payments.
  • New JUnit test cases for Accounting -> Void Payment and Cancel Invoice services.
  • New JUnit test case for Accounts Payable services which create payment groups for given invoices.
  • New screen under the Accounting -> Report tab that shows comparative income statements.  Added ability to generate reports in CSV and PDF from this same form.
  • Added option to cancel a reconciliation.
  • Created a new accounting screen which associates GL Accounts to “Cost Centers”.
  • New function to create sales tax entries on an invoice without an order.
  • Deposit/Withdraw facility for user to deposit or withdraw payments in the Bank Account.
  • Deposit slip facility to the Bank Account/Fin Account so that user can make a logical group of Payments for bulk deposit or withdraw.
  • User can create a new payment and directly associate to the current Bank Account.
  • Added the ability to add a facility to reconcile a Bank Account by creating a new GlReconciliation record and assign bank transaction to that reconciliation I.D.
  • Gl Account reconciliation bug fixes.
  • New field in the FinAccountTransaction entity – statusId, Created/Approved/Canceled.
  • New field in GlReconciliation entity – statusId, Created/Reconciled.
  • With  Accounts Payable -> Invoice -> Purchase Invoice – User can now issue a check payment for incoming invoices with a given bank account I.D.
  • With  Account Payable -> Invoice -> Commission Run – Added a search for outgoing invoices which require a commission payment and ability to create commission invoices from there.
  • Using Accounts Receivable -> Payment -> Batch Payment – Added a new feature by which user can create a group of payments that can be used for reconciliation.
  • Added and Updated many Accounting reports such as: Inventory Valuation, Income Statements, Comparative Income Statement, Transaction Total, Gl Account Trail Balance, Monthly Trial Balance, Cost Center, etc.  Added ability to export each to CSV and PDF.
  • Added consolidated balance of its ROLLUP party for the aforementioned reports.
  • Prepared JUnit test cases to verify GL Account Balance updated after execution of various accounting business process.
  • Added support Hindi UiLables for Accounting and Party and Common component.
  • Improved Commission Invoice services and fixed issues in Commission Invoice screens.

Manufacturing and Facility Management | OFBiz Tutorial

As you know, the manufacturing and facility management components are very important features of the OFBiz framework.  HotWax spent a lot of 2009 working on making these features more flexible so that facility infrastructures run smoothly.  Contributions include:

  • Enhanced support for the following product costing algorithms: cost formula, manufacturing costs, standard and actual costs.
  • Implemented the ability to define and import content for production runs.
  • Added a new fulfillment process by introducing Verify Pick and Weight Package Only screens.
  • Pick User can now select options for preparing a group on the basis of shipping method, warehouse area and number of order items.  Also, the group of orders is created according to selected options.
  • Added additional options on the picking screen to show detailed information for each order (shipping method, number of order items per order, etc).

Enterprise eCommerce has revolutionized the landscape of doing business in our world.  Your company now has the ability to reach more customers than ever before.  Apache OFBiz offers a platform that because of it’s open source nature will continue to improve and change in concert with emerging enterprise eCommerce technologies.  OFBiz developers like HotWax Systems also offer many OFBiz tutorials that make implementation and maintenance painless for the user.

-Stay tuned for the 4th and final post in this series.

OFBiz Tutorial – HotWax Systems OFBiz Contributions for Enterprise eCommerce Part 2

OFBiz Tutorial series highlighting HotWax Systems’ contributions throughout 2009 to the Apache Open For Business Project. OFBiz tutorials offer valuable insight into what is happening with the development of Apache OFBiz, how it can benefit your company and questions of practical application.

In this OFBiz tutorial we will focus on OFBiz Enterprise eCommerce related components that HotWax Systems has been involved with.

  • Enterprise eCommerce
  • Order Management
  • Catalog and Inventory Management
  • Marketing

During 2009, our developers placed a great deal of focus on optimizing the enterprise eCommerce component of OFBiz by updating interfaces provided by the “out of the box” functionality of the platform. HotWax has streamlined tables and inline styling for more flexibility and ability to be configured in order to meet the demands of companies that implement OFBiz.

The following list denotes functionality that has been added by HotWax Systmes to the OFBiz Enterprise eCommerce platform. The list is a bit exhaustive but it is important for the user to understand the improvements that have been made.

Functionality Improvements – OFBiz Tutorials

1. Layered Navigation in enterprise eCommerce categories

  • Navigation which allows users to filter product listing based on categories, features and price ranges.
  • Multiple filters available for the given product listing.
  • Ability to narrow or expand search criteria and try different filter combination’s helping to locate the desired product.

2. Improvements in the product review implementation.
3. Increased support for adding additional image features allowing user to see multiple views of the image.
4. Sample data added including “Sales Order” and “Purchase Order” in completed status as well as their accounting entries for payment, shipment and invoice.
5. Added user friendly URLs on breadcrumbs of enterprise eCommerce/order manager.
6. Implement “Contact us” functionality for unregistered users.
7. Improvement in “createShoppingListItem” service. This means that if a duplicate itme is added, the quantity is increased instead of an additional item being added to the  cart.
8. Implemented eCommerce product comparisons, allowing customers to compare any number of products by price, descriptions and features.  This feature can be configured or overridden to support different scenarios.
9. Added tracking of products that are purchased together to make reporting easier.
10. Added a widget to display the tracking of productions purchased together by enterprise eCommerce customers.
11. Email services can be configured to provide “guaranteed” delivery for sales messaging.
12. Major overhaul of enterprise eCommerce component CSS.

  • Comprehensive reset styling that allows designers to work from a blank slate for a more consistent cross-browser user experience.
  • Removed unused IDs and classNames, effectively consolidated heading and button styles. Compressed eCommerce CSS by removing whitespace and converting styles to shorthand. Resulted in 30% reduction in file size, overall file size reduced by 48%.
  • Created separated, consistent styles for all form elements. Moved form styling into separate forms.css file.

13. Major updates to enterprise eCommerce page markup.

  • Cleanup of all sidebar “screenlet” views as well as slimming down and simplifying box styling by removing extra tags and adding consistent heading tags.
  • Complete overhaul of “One Page Checkout”.  We removed the table based layout from the checkout and converted it to a semantic form structure. This has resulted in a much more flexible and aestetic checkout process.
  • Removing table based layout from all forms throughout eCommerce component. (this phase is ongoing)
14. Removed deprecated HTML elements and inline styles from enterprise eCommerce component markup to give easy category and product detail views.
15. Introduced “BizznessTime” theme to administration components as default theme for OFBiz administration. In doing this, we also added the following funciontalites:

  • Added better reset values to CSS to allow for more consistent cross-browser user experience.
  • Created consistent form, heading, and button styling across all administration components
  • Removed much of the unused and unnecessary CSS from administration components styling, reducing styling file size by 60%.

16. Enhanced survey implementation for testing scenarios of eCommerce application.

Order Management – OFBiz Tutorials

This phase was aimed at making the Order Management System much more user friendly and to offer additional features.

1. While placing purchase order, the orderId can be supplied by the user. If it is not supplied then it will be created automatically.
2. New field added for “cancelBackOrderDate” to be more consistent with other services like OrderItem(purchase order). Field is shown in order detail page and on Purchase order PDF if exists. Added the scheduled service as well.
3. Ability to add more then one product at a time to purchase order in order detail page with single add form.
4. While recording PO, when the unit price of the item is edited the new value automatically gets set as last price on supplier record.
5. After placing a purchase order, the user can now update the “estimatedShipDate” and “estimatedDeliveryDate” by editing order items in order detail page.
6. While waiting for the inventory to arrive, user can lower the priority on inventory allocation so that other orders can be fulfilled while they are waiting for sufficient inventory to fill the larger sales order. Order priority of order can also be be set from order detail page explicitly.
7. Introduced a new order return type, “Wait Replacement Reserved”. With this, when a return is accepted, a replacement order is immediately created in the “Held” status. When the original item return is received the “Held” replacement order(s) automatically sets the status to “Approved” to clear them for fulfillment.
8. After a return for refund, exchange orders can now can be created against original order.
9. Added new return type “Replace Immediately”. This could be used in a return process for which items are not expected to be returned or with items(s) that cost less then the shipping charges on the original order.
10. Added new filters on find order page – by country, shipping method, order viewed, payment gateway response (gatewayAvsResult / gatewayScoreResult).
11. Added an optional input field where user can specify an orderId while creating a purchase order.
12. Enabled audit for a few additional fields on the ReturnItem entity namely returnTypeId, returnReasonId, returnQuantity, receivedQuantity and returnPrice.
13. Added the feature to show or hide out of stock products on the front end of an eCommerce site. This new implementation is configurable through a new field showOutOfStockProducts (by default = Y) on ProductStore.
14. Enabled audit for a few additional fields on the OrderItem entity namely price and quantities.
15. Enabled audit for a few additional fields on the OrderItemShipGroup entity to archive changes in shipment method. This can be viewed through the “Order History” link under the screelet on the order detail page.
16. Added an option to add a new shipping address from the order detail page.
17. Added the feature to generate a pick sheet PDF for an order from the order detail page.
18. Added a new return type “Refund Immediately” which triggers refunds when return is accepted.
19. Added the ability to mark an order as viewed.
20. Product Store can now be configured to set the default store credit account type – either financial account or billing account.
21. Fixed major issues in the receive Purchase Order functionality.

Catalog and Inventory Management – OFBiz Tutorial

Catalog and Inventory components have been an established feature of enterprise eCommerce for some time.  There have been minor changes and integrations but thanks to the initial work of OFBiz developers, the capabilities have endured making dramatic re-working unneccessary.

These are a few of the modifications added:

1. Promotions hooked up to shipping total adjustments – Now Shipping Total adjustments can be applied using simple promotions. Users can specify percentage discount on a specific shipping method – and can use this for free shipping if this is needed as well.
2. Improved “ProductType” Hierarchy for Marketing Packages – Creating a hierarchy was possible before these modifications, but the business logic specific to parent type was never applied to the sub types, thus making hierarchy useless. Once this change was made, we have seen usage of this feature ramp up significantly.
3. Enhanced the find inventory screen with “sell through” information.

Marketing – OFBiz Tutorial

The marketing component of OFBiz has also remained stable of the development of the enterprise eCommerce landscape.  It provides users with the ability to easily track and report on different initiatives. We have simply added new reports over the past year to track different initiatives related to marketing initiatives such as, tracking purchases related to the tracking codes, tracking email traffic (emails sent, bounced and opened) and tracking subscriptions made and canceled during a given time period. The data that is collected has changed little but the ability to to be able to leverage it in a meaningful way has been greatly enhanced.

Enterprise eCommerce has come a long way and makes the experience for the end user simple, effective and pleasant.  As you can see, each integration made offers a competitive edge over other enterprise eCommerce and ERP solutions.