Great Ecwid Extension: Back in stock

Nov 5, 2013 by Qetzal, Head of Product
Posted Nov 5, 2013 by Qetzal, Head of Product

Why developer community matters

Ecwid is used by more than 350 thousand merchants currently, and each of them has his own requirements and priorities. Sometimes they ask for features, which are not available in Ecwid yet.
We are constantly working on the new functionality, but it takes some time to create and deliver a good feature. We don’t want our merchants to wait till we implement something, so we created a set of APIs which can be used to extend Ecwid functionality by means of building additional modules. We have Product API to manage your inventory, Order API and Instant Order Notifications API to manage your sales, JavaScript API to extend your storefront layout and functionality, and other helpful APIs. All these APIs can be used to develop additional modules for your Ecwid store, like syncing your inventory with a 3d-party system, or adding custom widgets and elements on your website, or syncing your customers with newsletter system and so on  you name it!
We already notice that a lot of developers use our tools to extend Ecwid functionality. We are really excited about this since we think that it benefits both developers and the Ecwid community. We encourage all the web devs to check our APIs and create something for Ecwid merchants, and to support Ecwid developers community, we decided to introduce the most interesting addons on our blog.

Today we want to feature the “Back in stock notifications” 3d-party Ecwid addon.

“Back in stock notifications” extension: how it works

A couple of weeks ago I decided to visit my favorite apparel store, a small boutique offering interesting vintage shoes and stylish outfit, located in ten minutes walk from my office. Having spent several minutes, I finally found what I was looking for. It was a tailored fit shirt with a cool dark grey pattern, but, unfortunately, it was too tight for me, and what is worse, this size was the only left. Having noticed my disappointment, the shop assistant told me that they were expecting new arrivals in a few days, I just needed to I leave my contact phone number and they would call me as soon as the desired shirt arrives. In fact, many successful store owners use every opportunity to get you as a returning customer.

The “Back in Stock” extension made by “NinjaWidget” team offers the same sort of service to the customers of your online store. If the product they want is out of stock s/he can leave their email and thus get notified when the product becomes available for sale. Once installed in your Ecwid store, the extension works automatically in the background. It checks your stock level periodically and alerts the subscribed customers after you update the catalog and some products are back in stock.

We consider this extension to be a great tool, as it reduces the number of visitors leaving your store empty handed and turns them into paying customers. Moreover it provides very handy stats that help a merchant to understand which of the out-of-stock items are demanded most.

Feel free to visit a demo store to see how Back in Stock extension works.

Testimonials

The “NinjaWidget” guys launched this extension several months ago. It was in a beta stage and a lot of Ecwid merchants have had a chance see it in action. We asked several of them to share their feedback, and this is what they said:

The “back in stock” widget is a very handy tool for every website.
After receiving constant email inquiries from customers wanting to know when products in our store would be available again, we began searching for something to cut down our hours responding to these email inquiries, and we found it with NinjaWidget!
We look forward to more great updates for this widget and perhaps some new releases in the future from the NinjaWidget team.

Sandra, www.aquaticfever.com

Just wanted to add our feedback. The widget is now functioning very well. So well in fact we nearly sold out our new stock in one day after notifications were sent.
Fantastic tool.

Bill, www.phukethealthshop.com

In our industry, it’s often that products are placed on back-order from the manufacturer and we have to place them as out of stock on our site. The “Back in Stock” app helps grow our business by allowing our customers the ability to be notified as soon as our stock is replenished. The app also has powerful reporting features, which helps us see which products customers are waiting for and will even display conversion rates once the product is back in stock. We’ve seen excellent results so far and definitely recommend this app to any Ecwid store!
Mike, www.naturalbodyinc.com

Under the hood

Here is some tech background for those who want to look behind the scenes.

The “Back in stock” extension uses several common frameworks and technologies. The core of the extension is Phalcon framework — one of the fastest PHP libraries for today. Combined with Amazon S3 service, this framework provides really high performance while working with the server part. The frontend of the control panel is entirely built on JavaScript, with the advanced libraries and components such as Backbone.js and Underscore.js being used.

The extension uses Mandrill service for sending email notifications to customers. It provides fast email delivering coupled with the advanced statistics about recipients activity. Ecwid Product API is used for items inventory and sales tracking, JavaScript API — for seamless embedding the “Back in stock” widget into Ecwid Product Browser.

How to get it

The “Back in stock” extension has free and paid plans. You can use it as long as you need with the only limitation of 5 notifications per month. However, if you want to send more notifications or get access to the premium features like HTML-rich email reminders, you can subscribe to one of the paid plans.

The setup process is simple: you should sign into “Back in stock” control panel and place the integration code to the same webpage where your Ecwid store is installed. You can find out more information about the extension at NinjaWidget website.

We’re really happy to see how NinjaWidget uses our APIs to create this great extension, and we encourage every Ecwid merchant to try it and see how it increases the number of returning customers.

If you’re a developer who has already created an awesome Ecwid extension, or if you’re developing it now, or if you only plan to, and have some questions, feel free to contact us at info@ecwid.com

About The Author
Qetzal is Head of Product at Ecwid. He loves to create new things to make people's lives easier.

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