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System Updates

The latest updates and releases from Adobe Business Catalyst to help extend and evolve your Online Business website.

March 2013 Updates

 By Katherine Anderson |  Tuesday, March 19, 2013 

We're happy to announce the details of our upcoming system update, due to go live 26 March 2013 PDT. This release includes improvements to our Web Apps module, exciting new beta features, and over 30 important bug fixes.

Web App Improvements

We’ve made several improvements to Web App module templates, giving you more flexibility when building your custom Business Catalyst applications. These improvements include:

  • {tag_itemid} is available in all Web App templates (list, detail, backup, edit)
  • {tag_photo_nolink} is available as an alternative tag for images 
  • {tag_photo_value} will render just the image path (e.g. "/images/photo.jpg") in all layouts. Multiple image tags are now also supported
  • {tag_datasource_id} is available in all Web App templates (list, detail, backup, edit). For example, assuming “author” is a data source, you will now have access to {tag_author_nolink} and {tag_author_id} from all templates
All 3 tags can also be inserted from the data tab of the Admin Toolbox, when editing a module template.

Improved Campaign Editing Experience (out of beta)

After months of testing and customer feedback, we'll be moving our improved email campaign editing experience out of beta for you and your clients.

The new editing experience is easier to use and separates content from style inside email campaigns. Using InContext Editing mark-up, you’re now able to define editable regions inside the HTML code of your email newsletter templates.

To give you more flexibility, we've also left the original editor in place if your clients prefer to use it. You can adjust the campaign editors settings inside your Partner Portal under Tools > Online Editor Settings.

New Beta Features

Recurring campaigns (ie. weekly newsletters)

With this feature, we're introducing a new type of campaign that sends recurrently at a set period. This is ideal for sending weekly/monthly newsletters or reminders at the end of each month to customers.

You're able to select a period for recurrence (eg. every 3 weeks), plus a time and day of the week for the campaign to send. Combined with the recently added ability to embed modules inside email campaigns, this can be used to completely automate regular newsletters that dynamically pull in your most recent blog posts, or featured products from an online store.

You can enable this feature under Site Settings > Beta Features. 

Other Improvements

Email deliverability enhancements

We've introduced two new changes with the goal of improving our email deliverability rates.

  • Campaigns and operational emails (ie. workflow notifications) will now be signed with DKIM, acting as a digital signature and improving overall email deliverability.
  • These emails will now also include a "sent via" header if the FROM email address is not a domain that has it’s DNS hosted with Business Catalyst.

Switch between multiple sites from the Admin ribbon

You can now switch between the Admin Console of multiple sites while logged in, from the Admin ribbon in the top-left of your screen.

You’ll see a list of your 5 most recently created sites, and with a simple click will be automatically logged in to manage each.

Improvements to "Develop" mode

Several improvements have been made to our "Develop" mode, including:

  • A handy list of related files now appears when editing a page
  • Files you were previously working on are auto-reopened when switching back and forth from "Manage" mode
  • Search functionality for code view is now available
Additional eCommerce tags

We’ve added additional tags which allow you to render gift vouchers and discount codes on both invoice and order layouts.

Product export improvement

The product export feature now generate a CSV file instead of an Excel document, for better compatibility.

We hope you enjoy this system update and look forward to your feedback on the new features we've included. Stay tuned to the BC Blog for more Business Catalyst news in the near future!

Business Catalyst Roadmap

 By Katherine Anderson |  Friday, August 10, 2012 

Business Catalyst Mission

Our mission is to enable online businesses, not websites through a vibrant partner network.

Value Proposition

All in one as key differentiator, both for you as partners as well as for the business owners.

For you it’s the one stop shop that enables you to meet all your customers’ demands, allowing you to grow to be a successful agency, and for the business owners it’s the one place where you go to manage and grow your online business.

Business Catalyst Strategies

  • Treat our partners as real partners, not simply resellers of our solution.
  • Invest in the all-in-one aspect of business catalyst as main differentiator.
  • Reinventing Business Catalyst into a great platform that enables you to make your customers successful online, allowing the right engineering team velocity, scalability and elasticity.

All in one, explained

It's all about integration. It's not about how well the e-mail marketing side of Business Catalyst compares to our competitors (feature-by-feature comparison), it's all about how we can take advantage of the fact that our system offers e-commerce, analytics, CRM and CMS next to e-mail marketing, and how we can combine ALL these to make the world's best e-mail marketing tool by taking advantage of these integrations.

It’s about workflows that will enable partners to sell the integrated solution and all in one vision to business owners.

Tactics / Roadmap 

September 2012

  • Better e-mail marketing/CMS integration, start working towards the platform vision. Enable better integration between e-mail marketing and CMS and e-commerce, by allowing CMS content to be reused in e-mail marketing campaigns.
  • Start executing towards our platform vision, by improving the extensibility of the list layouts on web apps and e-commerce modules.

November/December 2012

Better e-mail marketing/CRM integration; advance e-commerce.

  • Better integration between e-mail marketing and CRM, by enabling things like list exclusions.
  • Expand e-commerce stock capabilities to product attributes.

February / March 2013

Better e-commerce integration; continue working towards the platform vision.

  • Enable better flexibility for e-commerce by enabling liquid in a production-ready fashion.
  • Better e-commerce reporting.

May/June 2013

Platform reinvention.

  • Enable flexibility for our webapps by enabling liquid and web apps API enabling partners to further extend Business Catalyst to SBO needs.
  • Enhance webapps up to a point where an average BC partner will be able to recreate and enrich most existing BC modules (blogs, photo galleries, etc) using web apps.
  • Enable webapps import/export to fuel an ecosystem of partners helping each other.

New Terms of Use for Business Catalyst

 By Katherine Anderson |  Friday, April 20, 2012 

Along with several other changes in Adobe Business Catalyst processes over the past few months, they've also revamped the Terms of Use and signature process. Up until today the Terms of use were signed per website, but starting this release we will require a signature from every user attached to each website.

The next time you login to your Business Catalyst account you will be prompted to sign the new Terms of Use agreement. 

February 2012 Updates

 By Katherine Anderson |  Tuesday, February 28, 2012 
We will be launching our February release on 28 February 2012. We anticipate no major disruptions to the Business Catalyst service during this time. . The R173 release comes with an updated DNS infrastructure (hardware and software) for better performance and reliability, updated web form interface for improved usability and several bug fixes.

 Updated DNS Infrastructure

With this release we are going to replace the existing DNS infrastructure with a completely new solution (hardware and software) that aims to fix many of the DNS problems you've found while using Business Catalyst, greatly increase performance when resolving domains and support higher loads for new site creation.

 Updated Web Forms

We have updated the Edit Web Form user interface to simplify the discovery and usability for web form settings. Starting with R174, we've added a more visible Edit Properties button and updated the Web Form Properties dialog:


Related to web forms, the Reports > Web Form Usage menu entry in Admin Console will be shown only if the user has View Reports permission and at least a form is created on the site.

 Updates Coming

e'd like to give you a heads-up with upcoming changes in the following release, without setting anything in stone though.

User Interface V3 will become default for new users

Starting with our next release (March 2012), all new users will have access by default to the Business Catalyst V3 user interface, but will be able to switch to the current user interface. The change will affect all user types (Partners and Customers) and all sites (existing and new).

New names and module tags for Announcements, Literature and Bookings

To improve consistency across the new Admin, the Announcements, Literature and Bookings modules, their corresponding tags and user interfaces will be renamed. Existing tags and modules will continue to work as today, but users will no longer be able to insert them through module manager going forward. For each modules, the following name changes will occur:

Updated user management interfaces

To simplify the user and email accounts management workflows, we're going to update their corresponding user interfaces in the next releases. Going forward, we will separate the admin user accounts from email accounts management and start using an invitation workflow for user and email accounts creation.

Besides the change of workflow itself, this update completely changes the way we are thinking about the platform and represents the first step into the Business Catalyst future. The user and email accounts user interfaces rely on REST APIs and backbone.js to completely separate the UI from the application login and provide more development flexibility and increased performance. Going forward, every interface we'll touch will be built on this infrastructure and will allow us to publish APIs which partners can use to extend or tweak the platform.

Note: by separating email and admin accounts user interfaces, you will no longer be able to create users that don't have access to admin and email. Existing user accounts that don’t have email and admin access will continue to live on the system, but they will not be visible or editable in the new interfaces. We recommend you to use the current user interface to transition these accounts into either email or admin accounts.

SEO options will be enabled out-of-the-box

Site Settings -> SEO menu entry in Admin Console will be removed. The options available now are:

  • SEO friendly URLs for eCommerce, Announcements, Web Apps -- these will be enabled for all sites by default and cannot be turned off 
  • Enable partial URL matching for SEO friendly URLs -- this option will be deprecated.Existing sites will keep the current setting but able to switch it off using a special interface 
  • Enable sitemap.xml for search engines -- this will remain as is for existing sites, and always enabled for new sites 
Note that trial sites will not be indexed by search engines. Should you want to disable search engine indexing after upgrade, please use a custom robots.txt file or upload an empty sitemap.xml. 

If you'd like to use a custom sitemap.xml file, simply upload it to your site. If this file exists, it will be served instead of the BC-generated sitemap.xml.

Related to SEO, Enhanced 301 Redirects is being delayed for a few months.

Dropping support for Internet Explorer 7 and Firefox 4 or below

Starting March 20th, we will discontinue support for Internet Explorer 7 or lower and Firefox 4 or below. In order to continue using Business Catalyst Admin user interface without problems, you and your clients need to upgrade to a more recent browser:

January 2012 Updates

 By Katherine Anderson |  Monday, January 30, 2012 
We will be launching our January release on 8 February 2012. We anticipate no major disruptions to the Business Catalyst service during this time. Our R172 brings Business Catalyst V3 Beta to all users, further updates security for CRM users and solves some bug fixing. The release includes a large list of updates for Business Catalyst V3, some cross platform bug corrections and an improved code editor.

 Business Catalyst V3 available to all users

Starting with the R172 release, we are extending the Business Catalyst V3 beta to all customers (Partners and Business owners). V2 will continue to be the default user interface, but users will be able to switch to the new user interface and the system will remember the selection.

 Enhanced code editor for File Manager

The file manager code editor has been enhanced to support syntax highlight and other features. This is just a start to make code editing more productive inside BC, more will come.

 Updated reports interface

In order to improve usability and navigation, we are going to update the menu structure on all Business Catalyst reports and refresh the graphs designs. The changes are going to apply to both old and new version of Business Catalyst. 

Starting with R172, the Reports are going to have the following menu structure: 

  • Visitors is going to include: Overview, Geographic location, Visits and Page views, Unique visitors, Visitor loyalty, Browser and Operating Systems 
  • Traffic Sources will include: Overview, Referrals, Search Phrase, Search Engine Referrals and Spider 
  • Website Content will include: Overview, Pages, Entry Pages and Exit Pages 
  • Web Forms Usage will include: Overview, Inquirer Geographic Location, Inquiries and Top Web Form Usage
  • e-Commerce will include: Overview, Shopper geographic location, Sales, Top products and Abandon rate 
  • Email Campaigns will include: Overview, Campaign, Subscriber Geographic Location, Subscriptions vs Unsubscriptions and Newsletters sent 
  • Custom Reports will include: Customer Reports, eCommerce Reports and Website Reports 
  • Special Reports will include the former Custom Reports (custom built report by BC engineers and linked into specific sites, only 31 still active) 
  • Admin Reports will include: Admin Usage and Total Traffic Reports

 Deprecated functionality

Refer-a-friend form has been removed from the new module manager UI and it will no longer be available for insertion. Existing forms will continue to work, and the confirmation page is still customizable only for sites created until March 2012.

As a replacement, we recommend to use Social Sharing modules which we keep enhancing. Visitors which aren't using Social networks will be able to tell their friends about a site by composing an email in their mail client and sending them the link. This is easier than using the old refer-a-friend form as they already have the contacts available in the email client and no captcha is needed.

If you still want to use the built-in Refer a friend functionality, create a form and embed the set of fields from Marketing > Refer a friend. Then customize or insert this form in a page as desired.

If you have any queries about the new Security Update, please contact our Administration Team

December 2011 Updates

 By Katherine Anderson |  Tuesday, December 13, 2011 
We will be launching our December release on 14 December 2011. We anticipate no major disruptions to the Business Catalyst service during this time. This release includes a major change in the way we handle CRM passwords and a long list of bug corrections, mainly in the payment gateways area. Along with these changes, we have continued to improve UI V3 to make it ready for a larger roll-out early next year.

 Security update - CRM passwords

Effective December 14th 2011, we will be updating the way we handle CRM user passwords - for security reasons. In order to achieve a greater level of security, we are going to modify some of our Admin Console user interfaces and CRM APIs. Existing customer reports will also be altered during the update.

For more details please read the update announcement - Important Security Policy Updates - Effective December 14th.

 Issues fixed by R170 release

  • Issue 2821789 - Payments are processed differently for different countries for several payment gateways 
  • Issue – 2776267 & 3054570 - PayGate non-3D secure transaction does not record a return error in BC if such an error existed; instead it returns a generic error message if the transaction wasn't processed. 
  • Issue 2792959 - Card Number was not masked correctly when processing credit card with web forms Issue 2654380 - Secure PDF sent via 'Process offline' payment gateway was not using correct currency symbol for sites other than $ 
  • Issue 2826099 - The digital signature sent by RealEx did not match with the other values included in the request. 
  • Issue 2815782 - When a payment is sent in a second attempt to pay, with RealEx, the buyer is received "Order ID has been processed" error 
  • Issue 2757946 - Business Catalyst was not supporting AU as country code for PaymentExpress PG 
  • Issues 2821789 & 2875942 - The supported currencies/country for several payment gateways were incorrect Issues 3028716 - orders paid for PayGate 3D Secure ended up as not being paid 
  • Issue 3055166 - Sending campaigns to saved reports doesn't work Issue 2986635 - Reset password from Partner portal no longer works 
  • Issue 2871177 - Campaign is wrongly set to "Awaiting content approval" when you edit a scheduled campaign and only click Save and Send without clicking Send again in the pop-up window 
  • Issue 3061663 - [PG] Realex Payment Gateway -If an order amount is less than 1 pound e.g. 0.50 pence, the amount on Releax will be displayed as 005 and the order will fail 
  • Issue 3064597 - [PG] DIBS payment gateway displays English page when coming from a Danish website because we don't pass DK as language parameter
  • Issue 3006024 - If a customer fails an order and than return to the shop, all the products will have no tax codes calculated 
  • Issue 3048896 - Poplet images aren't rendering if the file name contains spaces at the beginning of the file or new lines 
  • Issue 3051419 - Cannot Save custom fields - there's no Save button 
  • Issue 3051418 - Cannot use tag Insert dropdown on the webapp layouts - it throws a message when trying to insert a tag 
  • Issue 2982619 - is no longer changed to in the WYSIWYG editor, when Partner Portal setting is to create at enter Merged Email Me & Email others functionality into Send Test Email. The logged in user email address is prefilled by default but users can specify additional email addresses separated by semi-colon Undo Import functionality has been deprecated.

 What's Next

We are expecting a web serving performance improvement release in mid-January where we will start deploying new origin server caching across most Business Catalyst static asset requests.

Our next major release is tentatively scheduled for the beginning of February and will include a larger roll out of Business Catalyst v3, improvements to the FTP server and additional changes to the CRM password workflows.

  1. Business Catalyst V3 roll out - starting with the February release, UI V3 will be made available to all customers; current interface will remain the default one for existing customers, but they'll have the option to switch to the new version; for new customers, V3 will be the default user interface 
  2. Major FTP improvements - We've embarked on a large effort to completely rewrite BC FTP access. When completed, you'll see better performance and reliability when using Dreamweaver or any other FTP client to manage your site content. 
  3. CRM passwords - starting with the February release, passwords in emails will be replaced with a link to set/reset password page.

Great news from the Adobe Business Catalyst Team.