Bloggers rejoice! Just a few weeks after the beta release, today brings the first update to the v6 blog.
Mon, 10 Mar 2014
Mon, 10 Mar 2014, 14:00
Mon, 17 Feb 2014
Mon, 17 Feb 2014, 17:13
Yep. Hot on the heels of the contact form beta comes the other most requested feature for v6...
Fri, 13 Dec 2013
Fri, 13 Dec 2013, 15:33
Although they’re very nearly ready, we need a smidgen more time to finalise and properly test the contact form and blog tools before we can make them available to you.
We’ve done our darndest to get them to you before Xmas, but with only a few days to go, while development is now complete there's a large number of platform changes we’re not confident we can fully test and release before Xmas. So we’ve made the call to hold the release until we’re back in Jan to ensure it goes smoothly.
Contact forms will be available to you in mid-January, with the blog to follow a few weeks later. More form features will follow in Q1.
We thought you’d appreciate a glimpse of how they're looking to keep the faith alive, so here’s what you’ll get in January (followed by a reminder of a few useful workarounds you can use in the meantime to include a contact form and a blog on your site).
The Contact Form - how it's looking
Mon, 25 Jun 2012
Mon, 25 Jun 2012, 16:22
You may have noticed that Facebook have made changes to their appearance by adopting their 'Timeline' view across all aspects of the site. So, in order to keep the Facebook version of your shop looking amazing, we have made some changes to make the most of the updates.
Your shop categories will now show on the left hand side (instead of a drop down on the right hand side) for easier and clearer navigation. You will also notice that due to Facebook's changes, there is no longer the left hand side bar, simplifying the page.
Along with these changes, we have improved our shop editor. You will have an improved previewing of your shop and the ability to add upload your shop icon directly from the editor.
Overall, the new layout should improve user experience and therefore making it easier for your customers to purchase through Facebook.
Wed, 1 Feb 2012
Wed, 1 Feb 2012, 14:31
This article by Sam Cater originally appeared in AppStorm
Many tools and packages exist online to help people create websites with minimal effort and involvement. Of course, each one has their own strengths and weaknesses. Some are more aimed at creating blogs, while others are better for single-page info sites.
Moonfruit is another competitor in this market. It looks stylish, promises to be simple, and … you do want to create a new site, right? So what does it have to offer, and what are its pros and cons? Lets take a look…
Making Creativity Easy
Moonfruit is designed for people with absolutely no web design experience. It attempts to give small business owners and individuals easy access to web management and creative tools. So without further ado, lets take a look at the site itself.
Choosing a template to work with
The first step in creating a site is choosing one of hundreds of themes as a starting point. From there it’s a case of altering and tweaking pretty much everything you see into a website that you would use to represent yourself.
The tools in the editor are very simple and easy to use, which is great because that’s exactly what people need. The elements, contents and formatting can be added and removed in a way that resembles Word or Publisher, so most people will feel comfortable using it. Moonfruit effectively turns a website into a page-by-page online document, where everything you see is configurable and can be adjusted as required.
The Editor window - More tools are made visible by selecting the categories at the top.
The content of the site has been intelligently and automatically mobile optimized.
A very useful feature Moonfruit has is automatic optimization of your site for mobile viewers. You don’t even have to configure or enable this, it’s there from the word go, no plugins, or code to meddle with. It didn’t show the Gallery image you can in these screenshots, however I am sure that this is solvable. Mobile-optimization is important these days, as with the growth of smartphone and tablet computer popularity, more and more views may come from such devices.
Another factor that would definitely make Moonfruit appealing to people who want a hassle-free experience is that the hosting and domain settings are handled for you. No FTP client is required, and there are no HTML or CSS files to manage. The web interface handles it all. On the subject of domains, you can link one you own to Moonfruit in a matter of minutes. They guide you through the process of changing address records with the company you purchased the domain from and so forth. You can also use Moonfruit to register a new domain if you so wished.
The social aspect of a websites? They are included too, with Twitter integration, RSS feeds, comment boxes, forum backends, and chat widgets.
Free website? Why thank you, yes.
They start you out on a 15 Day Free trial with 20MB of storage space. For any more space than this you have to crack open your wallet.
I chose the trial at first, and was expecting to have a really restricted interface and being prompted to pay for extra features. However when I signed in a popup box asked if I wanted to continue my 15 day trial, or keep a site for free. I clicked free, and the only condition is that I have to sign in every six months to keep the site ‘active’. Seemed like a good deal to me.
Obviously if you want a site for small businesses and enterprises you are going to have to break the 20MB limit, but for individuals or small groups it seems you can have a website on Moonfruit for nothing.
There are several pieces of functionality you can add into your website if so required, such as a blog, or even a shop.
The blog interface is very simplistic, offering only minimal functionality. What you see in this screenshot is all that you get. However for those of you familiar with feature-rich WordPress, remember that this entire service is geared towards people looking for straightforwardness and simplicity. Whilst it may look pretty bare, this is all that a blogger really needs. Three design modes are offered, Text, Image, and Article, so it definitely won’t be replacing WordPress any time soon.
For the original article, please click here
Thu, 22 Dec 2011
Thu, 22 Dec 2011, 10:52
The final release of 2011 slipped out late last week, and we've now had a chance to sit back and reflect on what we've delivered over the year. What a year it's been! But every year brings new challenges, so we're also looking ahead to what we're going to be delivering in 2012…
As you know a big part of what we're striving for is to allow you to "publish once, be everywhere" all with "total design control", so that you only update your content in one place (your website) and we take care of publishing it appropriately to web, mobile, tablet and Facebook in a way that supports your brand identity.
2011 laid the foundations for this, and we think 2012 will blow you away ;-)
Here are the highlights of 2011:
- Mobile optimised sites (Feb 2011)
- New Moonfruit.com brand and website (Mar 2011)
- Updated design tools - shapes, backgrounds (Mar 2011)
- Improved customer support via Zendesk (Apr 2011)
- Hundreds of new site templates (Mar – Dec 2011)
- Image lightboxes (June 2011)
- The Blog (July 2011)
- 4,000,000 sites built with Moonfruit (Aug 2011)
- New File Manager (Aug 2011)
- Getty Images (Aug 2011)
- WebUser Gold Award - best website builder (Aug 2011)
- The Shop - Web, Mobile, Facebook (Oct 2011)
- Launch event with PayPal (Oct 2011)
- Moonfruit office expansion (Nov 2011)
- Shop improvements - categories, quantities, shipping (Nov/Dec 2011)
It's no surprise that the team look a little bit tired! But never fear we'll leap back into action early next year with even more goodies.
What's to come in 2012
- Mobile version styling (colours) and include/exclude content from mobile version (probably Feb)
- More shop improvements – product variants, stock control, etc. (Regular releases throughout the year)
- And maybe, just maybe a little HTML5 website magic…watch this space ;-)
So that's that. We hope you've enjoyed 2011 as much as we have and you are looking forward to bigger, better 2012, as much as we are.
Until we meet again early next year, have a wonderful Holiday Season (or Xmas!), and a Happy New Year from all the Moonfruit team!
Tue, 23 Aug 2011
Tue, 23 Aug 2011, 15:27
Joe White is co-founder and COO of website builder Moonfruit. He's grown the business across a decade to an international company with Silicon-Valley-based backing. But White has had his fair share of headaches along the way. Here are his tips for small businesses looking to avoid legal hot water.
Running a small business in London can be a battle at the best of times, particularly in terms of managing your own time as it is one of the most valuable resources in the company. You need things done correctly, you can't do them all yourself, and you don't want to be distracted by things you shouldn't have to worry about. I should know, as COO/CFO of the number one hosted website builder in the UK, Moonfruit.com. We're a DIY website builder for consumers and small businesses to share their passions online, based in central London. Legislation affecting your business can seem like one of those extra things you just shouldn't have to worry about, but it is real and does matter. Some of it is a real pain, some of it is good discipline with real benefits. The main kinds of legislation that affect the running of your business are:
- Employment law: essentially, this concerns the relationship between you and your employees. From payment rights to varying types of discrimination.
- Consumer protection: this looks to ensure that consumers are treated fairly by businesses and to ensure product quality is satisfactory.
- Tax and regulations: anything from payroll taxes, VAT and corporation tax, to filing accounts and statutory documents.
It's your responsibility as a business owner to make sure you take notice of all these things. But this doesn't mean you have to do it all yourself. My first piece of advice would be to make sure you have an accountant who is looking out for the day to day stuff, particularly payroll and taxes. The revenue aren't particularly sympathetic to people who pay incorrect tax and a competent accountant will make sure you do. It is an additonal outgoing but - trust me - accountants are worth their weight in gold.
On the legal and employment side of things, treat people fairly, with respect, and you'll be okay in most cases. If you find yourself in a tricky situation, then take advice. There are several business services that will offer standard contracts and process documents (e.g. dismissal), so you can use these to save money. Smarta offers a business software bundle that includes legal and accounting software, so that can be helpful here. Most importantly, don't be afraid to do something for fear of regulation or concern that it's all too complicated. Seek to do things the right way and take advice if you're unsure, but don't get paralysed. Most government agencies want you to succeed and will work with you to help you comply, even if it's tidying up after the event! Some laws can even lead to a benefit for your business. Understanding that EU law requires us to give customers a 60 day right of refund for digital purchases has allowed us to promote this effective 60 day money back guarantee to our customers - to their delight! So it's not all bad :-)
Further reading: FREE Business Briefing: How to interview; The Comply or Die ebook
This article first appeared in SMARTA See it here
Wed, 27 Jul 2011
Wed, 27 Jul 2011, 15:52
Last week we put our blog feature out into the wild in public beta for everyone to try out and see what they thought of it. The feedback to date has been great and we're really glad that you all like it! The blog platform is waiting for you all to give it a try.
To help you get started we have 9 new beautiful blog specific templates for you to choose from. Alternatively you can use a standard template and tailor this to meet your own blogging needs.
We've had a few questions about what a blog actually is and how it might be useful to your business so here goes!
Blogging has been around since 1997 (in it's long form name weblog, shortened to blog around 1999). Since then people have been building these types of sites and as of 16 February 2011, there were over 156 million public blogs in existence. Today the lines are very much blurred between what a blog is and what a website is. Traditionally a website was something were you update individual pages with content in the form of text, images, audio and video. There was no concept of when it was published and you couldn't easily syndicate it to other sites.
In comparison to a website, blogging provides a way to structure your content as 'posts' in reverse chronological order, with the most recent post available at the top of the page. Posts can be tagged to be able to find relevant content first and is published through a standard called RSS (the orange icons that you see on the internet). This in turn can be used to re-publish your content to other services automatically, such as TwitterFeed.com for publishing blog content to Twitter. Something that is fast becoming the norm with blogging is the ability to share your posts through Facebook and Twitter using the Like and Tweet buttons. Most blog platforms provide this as an extra that you have to add in yourself - we've taken all the pain away and it's there by default.
You can use a blog in various ways depending on whether you are blogging as a business or blogging for pleasure. If you are a business looking to use the Moonfruit blogging feature then you may choose to use it for letting people know about your latest products, Maybe provide news or information around what your company is up to at the moment, providing your customers with an insight into the inner workings of your business. Your blog isn't just about publishing either. When you publish a post you can enable comments and then have conversations with potential customers creating a community.
As an individual you can use your blog to share your passions, interests and insights. It is a place to share and learn from others. The world is your oyster and now is the time to give it a try!
Fri, 24 Jun 2011
Fri, 24 Jun 2011, 17:21
The lovely team here at Moonfruit have been hard at work for the past couple of weeks and have released a minor update for you. We’ve been doing some performance enhancements on the blog which is currently in beta and it is now loading faster than it used to. The update also fixes a bug with the Google Search widget and forum search is back up and running! If you are based in the USA or Australia you may also find that our site loads a bit faster than it used to as well.
Sticking with the template tradition of always having new templates with updates, we've got 5 new ones available on the site wall on Moonfruit.com. Here’s a sneak peak!
And that's about that for now. As always let us know if you have any comments or concerns and if you find any bugs or oddities, please let us know!
Wed, 4 May 2011
Wed, 4 May 2011, 11:20
We've been working extremely hard behind the scenes here at Moonfruit HQ, and we're pleased to tell you the blog is now available in private beta. We've been private beta testing the new blogging tool for the past 2 weeks and would now like to open it to a few more of our customers to try out.
NB. We do have a number of known bugs that we're working on, all the details can be found on our Beta Blog. Please remember this is very much a work in progress and with your feedback, we can make the necessary improvements to get the full release out as soon as possible. Currently large blog posts will load and layout slowly in your site. We are working on fixing this performance issue along with the other bugs.
To take part in the beta testing, you must register at www.blogbeta.moonfruit.com. Once you have done so, you will then have the option to add a blog. You can add a blog to your site by adding a new page and selecting 'Blog'.
The key features of the new blog include:
- Style your blog like any other Moonfruit page
- Easy to use admin tool for adding and editing posts
- Save drafts, publish now or schedule posts for a later date
- Allow users to comment and easily manage replies through the Comment list
- Change the meta data per post like any other Moonfruit page
- Facebook share functionality on all posts (other sharing options are being worked on currently)
- Tag your posts to make them easier to find
'Add a Post' view
Many of you will be keen to know how it looks on a site, and how it renders on mobile. Within your site you can style the blog elements by selecting them and using the Editor as with any other page content. We're also pleased to say that the HTML view is also in place and renders nicely on an iPhone and other mobile devices.
'Site and HTML' view
The blog authors name will default automatically to your username if you haven't filled out your details in the admin section. To change this, follow these steps:
- Go to edit mode and select 'Admin' in the top navigation bar.
- Under 'Account' in the navigation on the left hand side, click on 'Your Details'
- Select the 'Your Details' tab in the pop up and click on 'view or edit your details'
- Run through the questions and you will be asked for a forename and surname this is what will then be shown as your blog author. It defaults to the username if these aren't filled out.
A few simple requests when using the beta blog. It is in beta, so please read the bugs list first and if you spot anything, then please feel free to let us know. Please do not contact support about beta blog issues as these will need to go through our submission processes on the blog beta site so we can collate and new feedback. Play with it, use it and have fun!
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