Tag - mobile

Thu, 18 Jul 2013


Vicki

Thu, 18 Jul 2013, 11:22




We’re pickin’ up good migrations...

...(plus workarounds, widgets and general nuggets of wisdom)

v6 migrate update main

Since launching the v6 migrate EAP (Early Access Preview) a couple of weeks ago, many of you have flown over to v6 and with impressive results, it seems. For those yet to take the plunge (or should that be flight?), we thought it would be worth sharing some of the best examples we’ve seen so far, along with some insights and workarounds shared by your good selves, as well as our Support team.

Continue reading...

HTML5 Update: Our roll-out plan

html5RollOut9.jpg

NB. Article update - 20th December 2012:

Release 2 will now be made available in the New Year. We’re working to incorporate as much community feedback as possible for the Beta (Release 2) and are focused on making features you’ve requested, such as the shop and blog, available as soon as possible in the New Year.

Continue reading...

Tue, 8 May 2012

Joe

Tue, 8 May 2012, 10:38




HTML5 Update

There's been some exciting progress on the HTLM5 site publishing project. The black ops dev team have been squirreling away to rewrite how your sites are published and adding in, bit by bit, the features to support full HTML5 site views.

The story so far

Just to recap, we started work on this in 2010, by rewriting the way we stored your site contents, e.g. text, images, links, etc. We wanted to abstract the content from the design so we could choose to display the sites differently for different platforms. The first task was mobile displays using HTML5, which we did in Mar 2011, and then updated last month with our new mobile editor, giving you greater design and layout flexibility for the mobile version.

mobileEditor.jpg
Mobile editor in action

But the biggest bit of work has always been the full site HTML5. Not only was it a more complicated job to make the sites identical in Flash and HTML, but we also wanted to wait for HTML5 to be more widely adopted to ensure a consistent experience for your visitors (as it is only fully supported on the most modern browsers). In January we showed you a preview of sites in HTML5, and showed you how this compared to Flash, and now automating this process for all sites is starting to come together.

How it will work

Pretty much the same. The great thing is that the edit tools you know and love will stay exactly the same. You will continue to edit your sites using our existing software, but we'll add the ability to publish the end result in HTML5, rather than the usual Flash. As we highlighted in the first article, some elements may need some tweaking by you (e.g. Fonts) to ensure they will look the same in each environment, but once that's done the experience will be the same in HTML5 from then onwards.

Where we are

We've tied together the editor with some of the core elements of a webpage which are now showing in HTML5 rather than Flash. This includes, text, images, some graphic elements and the page structure itself. Here's a little video of how it's currently working and some of the things you can do.

Here's a screen grabs of the same site on an iPad. So you can see it's very much the same :-)

HTML5IpadPreview.jpg IPad view in HTML5

But there's still a way to go, which is why this won't be released until later in the year, with end Q3 our target. We've got to tie back in the menus, the blog, the shop, HTML widgets (shouldn't be too hard, they're HTML already!), and lots of other bits and pieces.

Many of you have asked about how this will affect the load time of sites, which should also be much faster as we'll share the hard work between our big servers and the HTML rendering skills of modern browsers. So great news there too. (You can see the difference in load time in the video).

So that's it for now. We'll tell you more when we've got more to show you, but we're super excited about these changes and working hard to get them to you as fast as we can!

Mon, 23 Apr 2012

leila

Mon, 23 Apr 2012, 14:50




Mobile Editor release!

A lot of you have requested to have more control over how your site looks on mobile devices. For months now, our team have been working really hard on this feature and I’m pleased to announce that our mobile editor has now been launched!

As you know, our aim is to allow our customers to build their site once and publish it on all platforms i.e. computer, tablet and mobile. With the mobile editor, our code translates your website the way it sees best and then presents it on a mobile screen in your browser. You can then customise your site by changing colours, arranging the order of elements and providing the ability to hide and unhide elements on the page – giving you more control.

Here’s how it works in more detail:

mobile editor pic 1
Change the colour of your text and background to make your site stand out

mobile editor pic 2
Arrange your pictures/page elements in the order you would like them to be viewed by your visitors. This is more limited on the blog and shop pages, however, you can still play around with the elements on a page.

mobile editor pic 3
Hide and unhide elements on a page to make it more appealing.

All of this is part of our ongoing multi-platform strategy that truly allows you to 'publish once, be everywhere'. This is why we started seamlessly rebuilding the technology behind your site back in 2010, which will culminate towards the end of this year with the new HTML 5 full site publishing option. This mobile release is on that roadmap and adds a bit more zing to your mobile site, all in crisp new HTML 5.

What are you waiting for?! Take control of your mobile site today!

Shop Update: Product Variants

Since October last year the ShopBuilder has gone from strength to strength and our customers have now built over 135,000 shops. There are already 168,552 products on sale. As Leila mentioned in an earlier blog we have been taking your recommendations on board for which features you'd like to see next and Product Variants (Options) came top of the list. Thanks to your feedback, today we pushed out an update that now allows you to apply variations to all your products e.g colour, range, size etc.


Variants

To update your shop to use variants, you need to use the update tab on the Editor for each ShopBuilder section. If you've not done this before it's very straightforward. Go to your shop page whilst logged in, click the shop on the page so it's highlighted and then go to the Editor. Click on the Update tab and click on the Update widget button. And then Save your page. You'll need to do this for the four sections (Product Catalog, Product Detail, Shopping Cart and Sale Confirmation) which you can work through using the drop down on the toolbar.

ShopBuilder Update Tab
Getting the new updates is easy

Adding variations is also very easy. Go to your Product List on the Shop section and edit that product. You will now see a section in the middle called Product Options which allows you set up product options or variations up to a maximum of 50 per product.

Product Variants in Editor
How you set up variants within the Editor

So not only does this give you more flexibility over the products you sell, allow you to add one base product and offer a range of variations, but it also means, for example, that if you run a Standard account you can run a shop that offers up to 2500 different items or units for sale (50 products x 50 variations).

Product Variants in View
How your customers will see variants in action on your website

As with other features of the ShopBuilder, Product Variations will also appear on your Mobile Shop and your Facebook Shop (where they've been set up correctly).


Bonus

Now, for the eagle-eyed amongst you, who spotted the bonus feature?

We managed to sneak in Duplicate a Product to the release. This will make it easier for our shop builders to easily copy a product which you can then modify or adapt as you see fit on your Product List. Using the Edit drop-down for each product you can quickly copy a product into your Product List.

Duplicate Product
Duplicating an existing product is now very simple


So, what's next?

Well, the next release is very exciting and will see our first version of the mobile editor going out the door. The editor will give you access to mobile version styling (colours) and include/exclude content from the mobile version. For those of you who consider mobile technology to be a key channel to visitors accessing your sites, this tool will give you more control. Obviously the HTML5 work will provide even greater benefits but that won't hit the streets until Q3.

So, what's next for the shop? We've had some great feedback from our customers and we now wish to find out what the next most important feature is for you to have added to the ShopBuilder. We have selected the next top 3 requested features that we keep hearing again and again, but we'd like to get more specific feedback on what we build next. So if you want to have your say on what shop feature you'd like to see developed next please cast your vote in our quick and simple survey. So, over to you.


Lastly, what we have fixed!

We fixed a number of bugs in this release, many of which were minor. The headline bug fixes were:

  • Google Webmaster Tools verification code is again being added to the HTML
  • You can now scroll again in edit mode across all supported browsers
  • Facebook Shop image popup gallery is now working correctly again

And that's another release.

Wed, 1 Feb 2012

Clare

Wed, 1 Feb 2012, 14:31



Easily Create a Website with Moonfruit

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.

Costs?

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.

Bolt-ons

There are several pieces of functionality you can add into your website if so required, such as a blog, or even a shop.

Blogs

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

Mon, 30 Jan 2012

Joe

Mon, 30 Jan 2012, 10:16




Moonfruit sites to be published in HTML5!

As many of you know, there's been lots of talk about HTML5 being the standard for web development of the future. The exciting thing about HTML5 is that it allows the kind of design customisation (embedded fonts, vector drawing, etc.) that in ye old days was only possible using Flash. Design is very close to our hearts here at Moonfruit, so Flash was our original choice of technology precisely because it could create the kind of visually stunning sites that we liked and that we knew you would like.

But times, they are a changin'. Now that HTML5 has the design capabilities to match the richness of Moonfruit websites, and has a wide enough adoption (it is only viewable in the most modern browsers), we're ready to take it on! As you know we've been working in HTML5 for our mobile and Facebook versions of sites, so this web version will be an extension of that, but take it far beyond.

So later this year, we will be updating Moonfruit so that sites can be published in HTML5 for web and tablets (though you'll be able to keep the Flash version if you want).

And this is what it will look like as our example site goes from Flash to HTML5 (watch closely!)

Spot the difference

Screen_Shot_2012-01-30_at_10.12.33.png
Flash version

Screen_Shot_2012-01-30_at_10.12.37.png
HTML version

www.moonfruit.com/html5/

Yes, you spotted it, the font changes slightly. This highlights one of the lingering issues with HTML5 is that fonts are treated slightly differently than in Flash. This is something that we will be working on, but may be one area you'll need to tweak if you want to use the HTML5 version for your site.

So when's it coming? We would expect the HTML5 site display to ship in Q3 this year, after the summer. We've been working towards this for quite a long time now with changes having begun in 2010 to reorganise the way we store data about your site so that we could choose to display it in different formats for web, mobile and Facebook. The HTML5 site display will be the another point on our journey to 'publish once, be everywhere'.

So to recap. In Q3 2012 Moonfruit users will have the option to display their sites in HTML5 by default. New sites from this time will automatically be displayed in HTML5. We've made this decision because HTML5 is the future of web development, and now supports the richness we need for beautiful Moonfruit websites.

Enjoy!

Tue, 20 Dec 2011

Joe

Tue, 20 Dec 2011, 10:28




Christmas release!

Ho ho ho. We thought we'd get a few more things out in the St Nick of time just before the holidays. We'll follow up later in the week with a summary of everything from 2011 and a hint at what's to come in 2012. But here's what's just been shipped.

Updates to the Shop Checkout page

Your customers can now set product quantities on the Checkout page when buying multiple items. And we've also made more clear the checkout options via PayPal, or paying by Card (not requiring a PayPal account). Plus there's a shipping drop down box.

Shopping Cart Updates

NB. To get the Checkout page updates, you'll need to navigate to the 'Checkout page' (by using the shop drop down list in the Editor), and then on the Page Editor click 'Update template'.

Shipping updates

We've added the ability for you to set domestic and international shipping rates for your product purchases. This is part of a long line of shipping based features that we will continue with next year, but for now this is one additional variable you can change.

Shipping Options

Category tweaks

You can now hide categories from the list so you can organise your products in secret ways, and then link to special hidden categories without them having to appear in the Category menu. You can also rename the 'All category'

Hidden Categories

Mobile render tweaks

We've updated the way we generate the mobile versions of your site to better organise the content we show. Items are grouped more logically and additional images will now show in the HTML version. Previously images covered by text would not be displayed, but provided at least 50% of the image is 'visible' we'll now show the image in the mobile version. We have another release slated for early 2012 which will further enhance the mobile version.

Mobile Shop

New Shop templates

We've updated all the shop templates to include the categories from the last release, and also the quantities, shipping and payment options from this release. We hope you'll agree there's some lovely stuff in there!

New December Templates

That's all for now. The team are already working on more goodies for early next year, but we'll soon be putting on our warmest socks and settling down for a good long sleep over the hols. We hope you have a wonderful time and a welcome break too.

As always, thoughts and feedback welcome.

Thu, 1 Dec 2011

Joe

Thu, 1 Dec 2011, 20:33




Shop update: Categories!

As many of you will have noticed, we launched the long awaited ShopBuilder about a month ago and as promised we're going to have a continuous stream of new shop features coming as quickly as we can bake them in the Moonfruit oven. (We don't really bake our software, but you get the idea).

We've had a great response to the shop launch with over 45,000 shops having been built in the last month. And we've also had a lot of feedback from you about the additional features you'd like us to build as quickly as possible. We love the feedback, so keep it coming.

So first out of the oven is the new Category feature. Many of you were asking for it, so here it is.

hp_image.jpg
Shop homepage with Category links

Categories allow you to create groupings for your products and have different ways of ordering and arranging them to suit the different audiences you may be addressing or targeting. In the shop manager you can now add categories and assign products to categories. One product can be in more than one category and the list order of products in each category can be different.

cat_editor_image.png
Category editor

Categories have their own URL so you can link directly to a category sub heading. We've also created a new link type on the link tab in the Editor so that any image or link can link to a category allowing you to construct your own navigation. You can add category links direct from the menu of your site too, so that your normal site menu can offer different category pages.

link_editor_image.jpg
Link editor with new category link type

And if that wasn't enough, there is also a new category link widget in the File Manager which automatically creates a list of all your categories and links to each of them. You can customise the style of this category link widget and change the button style, font and colours.

cat_list_image.jpg
Category list widget on right

The mobile and Facebook views have also been updated to incorporate the category view. So if you have more than two categories, your Facebook shop will show the category names and images, which link through to the category product lists. And on the mobile view you can navigate to the category types from the drop down at the top of the page.

FB_shop_image.jpg
Facebook shop with categories

mobile.PNG
Mobile shop with categories

So that's about it for now. All these images are taken from our shopdemo.moonfruit.com website, so feel free to have a look and a play there.


So what's next?

We're working on some improvements to the shipping options and the ability to change the quantities of items on the checkout page - so your customers can buy multiple numbers of an item more easily. These should be out before the end of the year (testing permitting). Then early next year we will bring out product variants, and after that basic stock control and discount/coupon options. After that? Well, some more stuff - helped by the feedback we get from you guys.

Wed, 2 Feb 2011

Joe

Wed, 2 Feb 2011, 11:10




Let's try that again – New release 2nd Feb 2011!!

And this time it's working! There has been a huge amount of work that has gone into this release as some of the core parts of the Moonfruit data structure have been rewritten to support the mobile HTML roadmap (V1.0 in this release) and the new Blog and e-commerce features that will follow (blog first, then e-commerce).

Mobile HTML version (V1.0)

So a large part of the work in the past 6 months has been in setting up the technology so that we can display your sites in the full Flash version (as before), a desktop HTML version (if you don't have Flash), and now a mobile HTML version (which is optimised for the small screen). We'll publish a dedicated article on just this topic in the next couple of days, but below is an idea of how the sites look in the different versions.

3Devices.png

The mobile optimised version is a single column render of your site in HTML. This allows the content to be displayed as a long vertical list which is easier to read and the user can scroll down through the objects on the page. The site navigation is done by a roll out menu, so the majority of the screen space is dedicated to your content.

This is Version 1.0 of the mobile HMTL and we will continue to upgrade it over the coming months. If you have cases where you think the mobile version is not displaying the right content in the right order, let us know and we'll add it to our test cases. We'll also add specific mobile styling into future releases to give you more options for customising it.

NB. If you are looking through the HTML version on your mobile and see a page with no contents in it, just refresh the page and it will then display the contents correctly. This 'empty page' will only happen the very first time a page is visited following this new release, so it won't happen for all users and will happen only once.

Shapes

The new shapes widgets allow you to apply effects, fills and gradients to a variety of different shape objects. These are seriously useful for customising the basic design of your site. We'll be looking to add this kind of functionality to other objects in the coming months, including text boxes, images and the blog, all of which will benefit from the improved design you can achieve with it.

newShapes.png

Let us know how you get on with them and the kinds of things you use them for.

No background option

We've added a new setting to allow you to turn off the Flash background of your site so that the HTML background is shown across the full browser. This allows you to achieve the 'full screen image' or 'chunky header/footer' styles that are common in the new contemporary web look and feel. How about a full screen image, shove in a few rounded corner shapes with drop shadow under your text boxes for legibility and bish-bash-bosh there you have it ;-)

noBackgroundImage.png

And before you ask, tiling options for your background image will follow shortly ;-)

That's it for now. We regret we can't bring you the blog at the same time, but there's a bit more work to do on that. 2010 was a big year for us in terms of investment in the infrastructure to make certain features possible, and 2011 will be the year when all these features start hitting the streets. Expect a lot more from us in 2011. We expect more from ourselves.