WordPress shopping carts with Magento features

The beauty of WordPress is that it brings traffic to your site if you post good content frequently- and if you want to sell stuff, traffic is good.

The problem with Shopping carts online- is they are only that – a shopping cart- a store, with no advertising- except what you pay for. Magento is an amazing open source shopping cart solution- but, it’s not a CMS- and it doesn’t give you the ease of posting that WordPress does- so- enter Visser labs– with their plugins that bring the WP e-Commerce plugin some of the cool functionality of Magento- without the the complexities.

The first is the ability to have 2 different price levels- one for wholesale- and one for retail:

Wholesale Pricing for WP e-Commerce uses custom User Roles to apply different pricing levels against preferred customers (e.g. Subscribers, Wholesalers, Staff, etc.).

via Wholesale Pricing | Visser Labs.

Another gives you the ability to do wish lists:

Add to Wishlist for WP e-Commerce also allows WordPress users to manage their Favourites entries and remove items they no longer desire. Easy integration to WP e-Commerce and comprehensive step by step instructions are included.

Or offline credit card processing- for those who don’t want to charge when ordered- but when shipped:

Offline Credit Card Processing allows store owners to process credit card orders offline by accepting the credit card information and spliting the card number into two parts; partial save to the database while the rest e-mailed to the store owner.

Check out their site for more plugins to this e-commerce solution for WordPress.

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New iPad interface for WordPress

You know the millions of dollars Rupert Murdoch spent designing “The Daily” for iPad- and Conde Naste and all the other publishers? Yeah, well a free plugin for your wordpress install makes your site sexy like a magazine app- with a quick click of the install button: either go to your plugins and search for it- or go to the addon page Onswipe

It’s been rolled out to all the wordpress.com sites- and is supported by Automattic– the people who manage the WordPress project. From their blog:

With the launch of Apple’s iPad we have seen the future of computing and it is touch. Nothing matches the visceral feel of navigating your digital world with your hands. The past four months we’ve been working closely with Onswipe to bring your iPad visitors our vision of what a blog can look like re-imagined for a touch experience.

Our iPad-optimized view is app-like in its functionality, but pure HTML5 goodness on the backend: it supports touch interactions, swiping, rotation, and many other features of the iPad….

There are some fun options to play with too. If you browse to Appearance -> iPad in your Dashboard you can:

  • Have the theme use an image from your recent posts as a cover.
  • Upload a logo to showcase your brand or personality on the cover.
  • Upload an image to be used as a loading graphic when visitors add your site to their home screen.
  • Switch fonts.
  • Choose from 9 different skin colors, to best match the feel of your site.
  • Enable or disable the whole thing.

When you tap to view a post, you get to see the full content with a slick commenting interface and social sharing tools for Twitter, Facebook, and WordPress.com literally at your finger tips. It’s a lot of fun browsing sites with Onswipe.

On WordPress.com we’re seeing about 750,000 page views a day from iPad visitors and it continues to rise. New tablet devices seem to be coming out every time you turn around. In the coming months we’ll be expanding to work with other popular tablet devices, but we chose to focus on the iPad first because… well it’s cool.

via Wow Your iPad Readers — Blog — WordPress.com.

The beauty of the perfect implementation of good code that separates the content from the presentation- as WordPress does so well, is it is easy to reformat your content multiple ways- and for multiple devices (the exact opposite of sites built in Flash). Due to the huge installed base of WordPress sites- the developments and goodness come all that much quicker than they do for other open source CMS systems- and blow the doors off proprietary code bases.

I’ve installed it on www.esrati.com for a test – so if you have an iPad, go check it out. Of course, if you don’t have an iPad, you won’t get the dreamy effect.

This is just one more reason- that looks of your site- aren’t as much of an issue as content. So get busy- install it- and write some new posts.

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WordPress 3.0.1 auto-update failures

WordPress 3.0.1 fails with auto update- on our server, every time. Haven’t figured out what causes it- other than possibility of some problem with Fantastico installs.

We’ve also had quite a few hangs in plugin updates- where the installer fails in the process. The solution to plugins was often to go to the Upgrades folder- and just copy the plugin upgrade file over into the plug-in folder. Or- to delete the Upgrades folder and recreate it with the same permissions: 755

However with the WP upgrade- it’s not getting hung up in the upgrades folder.

Here is our workaround:

Manually update it- which means using an FTP program.We like Transmit on the Mac, but you can also use the free FireFTP plugin for Firefox.
Download the new version- and then copy every file except the WP-content folder over on top of your old files- and replace.

When you do anything in WP-admin – it will prompt you to update the database.

After that – if it still says it’s in maintenance mode- delete the .maintenance file in your root directory.

And you should be running WP 3.0.1

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