As the first quarter wraps up, we want to give you an update on the status of responsive SmartEtailing templates. Updating our template infrastructure has been our major software development initiative for the last year and we know that this innovation will have a positive impact on your business.
We are currently on schedule to have responsive templates ready for installation before June. At Interbike last year, we were targeting the first quarter for launch. However, as the new year approached, we recognized that we would need more time and revised our timelines for Memorial Day. We apologize for the revised timeline.
What Has Been Accomplished
Most importantly, the infrastructure work to our template environment is complete and in testing. SmartEtailing is an enterprise level software as a service (SAAS). That means that creating individual responsive websites involved overhauling our base software application to handle a whole new way of operations. We needed to create a common architecture that can support over 1,000 individual customized variations that can be maintained with common updates over time. This project has been a monumental undertaking and I’m proud of what our team has accomplished.
In addition to this significant work on the architecture of the core SmartEtailing application, we have also made major progress in updates to our Merchant Admin. The most visible part you have seen so far this year is the new user interface (UI) that you've been working with in recent months as you’ve maintained your website. This is a significant step which has created a framework that allows us to install a new responsive page builder tool that will empower all of our clients to design great-looking responsive websites.
We have been doing months of user acceptance testing among our development, marketing, and support teams here at SmartEtailing, along with testing with our beta user clients. Because our software has so many intricate functions and users interact with the software on a variety of web browsers and devices, we need to test extensively. Even though quality assurance testing is extremely time consuming, it is an important part of ensuring great experiences for you and your customers.
The first responsive SmartEtailing website built with the new template infrastructure has been launched and we have been monitoring functionality for more than 30 days. I’m happy to share that the site is performing well.
Having seen positive results with our first test site, we are preparing to launch our second site this month. Because our tools for implementing and editing our new templates are in the final stages of development and testing now, our rate of test site builds will accelerate dramatically in April and May so we can achieve our delivery goal.
To ensure that you have a positive experience as you transition to our new templates, we are investing in staff and processes.
We are hiring for our development department to ensure that we are well-staffed to support the process of helping more than 1,000 clients migrate their websites to the new templates. We are mapping out the workflow and creating support documentation so we can be as efficient as possible at migrating sites on behalf of our clients while also efficiently offering support for clients who choose to manage the migrations themselves.
When Will Your Site Change
As we finalize our pre-launch and testing, we will communicate, final schedules, your options and provide an easy channel for you to have questions answered. You will be able to migrate this summer if you choose. We will be able to do the work for you or you can do it yourself.
Many clients will choose to wait until the fall/winter to update their templates in order to avoid the undertaking in the middle of the season. We are here to help no matter what you decide is the right decision for your business.
You can reference these previous blog posts with explanation videos and frequently asked questions to build a complete understanding of responsive SmartEtailing templates.
We’re very excited about the new templates and want to make sure that all of your questions are answered. While there will be a time investment required to update your website, we’re offering our services to do this for you or to walk you through the process.
Please contact us and we'll address any questions that you have.