WooCommerce, WooCommerce everywhere, “hurray” the devs did think

Written by James Koster on July 26, 2012 Blog, WooCommerce.

It sure is getting hard to think of interesting headlines for our weekly WooCommerce drops. Hopefully the products we launch make up for it! This week we’ve a new child theme, Zferral integration, UserVoice integration and 2 more payment gateways.

PixelPress Commerce

Last week we released PixelPress, a kickass responsive business/portfolio theme. Today we’re excited to release PixelPress Commerce. Following in the footsteps of our other WooCommerce child themes, PixelPress Commerce seamlessly extends the PixelPress parent theme with WooCommerce.

Check out PixelPress Commerce

Product Bundles

Product bundling is one of the most effective marketing strategies. Bundle a few products together, sell them at a discount price and voila – sales go up! However, product bundling is not all about boosting sales. For some shops, product kits and custom-built assemblies are an essential part of their business, which needs to be built upon a flexible, user-friendly e-commerce platform. With Bundles, WooCommerce provides a one-stop solution that covers almost every bundling need!

Developed by SomewhereWarm.

View this Extension

Elavon VM Payment Gateway

Elavon VM for WooCommerce is a gateway plugin that allows you to take credit card payments via Elavon directly on your site, resulting in a completely integrated and seamless checkout process.

Developed by Justin Stern.

View this Extension

UserVoice Integration

This extension gives the users on your WooCommerce-powered site the ability to login to your UserVoice account straight from their WordPress account (a process known as single sign-on or SSO). It also lets you display a handy feedback tab on your website so customers can leave support tickets for you without ever leaving your site. The extension also gives you an option not display information about your users next to the tickets that they logon UserVoice – this includes information about their account on your website and their purchase history.

Developed by Hugh Lashbrooke.

View this Extension

Zferral affiliates

Zferral is an affiliate program that helps drive visitors to your website by getting your customers to advertise for you. This extension offers you a way to seamlessly integrate the Zferral service into your WooCommerce powered store.

Developed by Hugh Lashbrooke.

View this Extension

Certitrade Payment Gateway

Certitrade is a Swedish online payment service provider. Certitrade can take payment in the following currencies: Swedish Krona, Danish Krona, Norwegian Krona, Icelandic Krona, Euro, US Dollar $, English Pound £, Australian Dollar, Canadian Dollar, Japanese Yen, New Zealand Dollar, Swiss Franc & Turkish Lire.

Developed by Niklas Högefjord.

View this Extension
The WooCommerce Survey is still running. We’ve had a fantastic response so far (over 700 of you have filled in the survey) but the more feedback we get the better. We’ll be closing the survey at the end of the month and aim to announce the prize winners the following week.

Which is your favorite release this week?

cta-banner-10-product-page-v2_2x

66 Responses

  1. Maire
    July 26, 2012 at 3:17 pm #

    Taking a look now! Doesn’t the product bundle make the chained products a bit redundant? How are they intended to serve different purposes? (not incl where people build their own bundle).

    I think you should give a discount coupon for the first 50 downloads on every new release 😉

    • mike
      July 26, 2012 at 3:25 pm #

      They are different – chained products are basically used for giving access to additional products after purchase.

      “Chained products should be used if you want to sell a single product, and gift/give access to other products after purchase.”

      Bundles on the other hand give you customisation of bundled products.

      Simular, but different uses.

      • Maire
        July 26, 2012 at 3:31 pm #

        Ok.. I am still not 100% seeing the difference between the bundled products with one static price and chained products.. this is not a criticism, I agree with deeptitanic that the more options the better! I guess I will give it a go and see which will look the least confusing and most tempting to the customer.

        Definitely the build your own bundle ability is great!

        I am now going to have a play with the pixelpress theme 🙂

      • Joe
        August 2, 2012 at 2:51 am #

        i reccomended chained products to my client to fit this purpose, ie add several of our store downloadable products to a much higher priced self study online course bundle over streaming video. So are we now stuck with a slightly defecient extension which we assumed by the advertising would provide us with a semi passable user experience? Not a huge deal imo since we don’t need to track stock levels and that added functionality stands on its own of course. I just would like to get some confirmation that chained products hasn’t been abandoned due to the extreme feature overlap? As long as chained products eventually has a user interface that makes sense, and that a future update will fix the error caused by leaving downloadable product checked so that one doesn’t have to log in daily and complete all the processing orders manually I willl be happy, that was expected from the start. BUt if it’s going to be abandoned in favor of this new extremely similar plugin I’m sure I’m not the only one who would feel like an idiot for blindly trusting a developer to deliver on the goods.

        Anyone who bought sparrow when it first came out because they wanted to support a group of developers with a great idea for a still unfinished product, only to be bought up by google and issue a statement this week thanking us for the money and assuring us that there will be no further development or updates to quite possibly the best mail thin client to ever exist. 🙁

        • SomewhereWarm
          August 2, 2012 at 9:10 am #

          Hey Joe,

          Product Bundles does not replace anything, since it is not designed for bundling items onto existing products, like you described 🙂 Thats indeed a job for Chained Products.

          Nirav, the developer of Chained Products can also fill you in on the details, but the extension is actively developed and will be constantly improved in functionality and features.

    • Jon
      July 26, 2012 at 3:32 pm #

      I agree, the product bundle extension looks to do the same thing as the chained products extension that I’ve already purchased.

      It looks like it has better stock control options though, which is an issue I’ve been having with chained products. Chained products doesn’t show a bundle out of stock if one of the individual items in the bundle is out of stock, until you try and add them to the cart. Product bundle looks like it may?

      It also looks like it offers better options after looking through the documentation.

      Is there any chance of swapping them over?

      • Manos Psychogyiopoulos
        July 27, 2012 at 8:30 pm #

        Hi Jon,

        This is Manos, developer of Product Bundles!

        The two extensions target very different needs. Please read my comments below to get a more clear picture 🙂

        Regarding your question, Product Bundles presents bundled items similarly to how they are presented in their single product pages. So, stock availability is shown for each item independently – and if you have enabled stock management on a bundle-level, it is also shown for the bundle itself, right above the add-to-cart button.

        Bundle-level stock management exists for cases where all bundled items are in stock, but there is a need to restrict bundled sales for whatever reason, for example, if the bundle comes with items that are stock-managed but not ‘sold’ or listed, such as product manuals, consumables or assembly-related parts.

  2. deeptitanic
    July 26, 2012 at 3:26 pm #

    Hey, I reckon you should let us pick the titles 🙂

    @maire I don’t mind if similar territory is covered with extensions … clients can be fickle, so the more options we have the better!

    Cheers!

  3. Maire
    July 26, 2012 at 3:45 pm #

    Sorry to be a pain, I just installed pixelpress commerce and get this message on the front end top menu

    Warning: Missing argument 1 for woocommerce_cart_link(), called in /home/spectrab/public_html/coqu/wp-content/themes/pixelpress-commerce/header.php on line 89 and defined in /home/spectrab/public_html/coqu/wp-content/themes/pixelpress-commerce/woocommerce/woocommerce-layout.php on line 195

    • Matty Cohen
      July 26, 2012 at 3:55 pm #

      Hi Maire,

      Thanks for reporting this. I’ll pass this on to the development team. 🙂

      • Maire
        July 26, 2012 at 3:58 pm #

        Really wanted to just press *like* on that, facebook style, lol.

        • Maire
          July 26, 2012 at 3:59 pm #

          (ps. i installed it on a site just listed in this post, not on the site I listed in the above post

      • Kleber Costa
        August 2, 2012 at 11:17 pm #

        I’m facing the exact same issue reported by Maire.

        Please let us know if there is a log, screenshot or anything else that would help you troubleshoot/fix this for us.

  4. kaze
    July 26, 2012 at 7:00 pm #

    Im pissed off. Bundle Products is almost the same as Chained Products. When i buy product x, it comes with products y and z. You can call it whatever you want, but this is the “main point” of chained products.. or am i talking about bundle products? yeah, who knows what i was refering to on my example — its because they’re 90% the same thing.

    The differences that exist between the two are, well, what should be included on the next updates of chained products extension. Anyway, i too wished that i could “switch” what i’ve bought (chained products) by this one.

    • mike
      July 26, 2012 at 7:49 pm #

      Chained is a chain of products linked to a product – you buy x and get some others forced upon you. E.g. you can use it for chaining multiple downloadable products, or chaining related products like a User Guide onto some Software.

      Bundled is (of course) a bundle of other products. A bundle is not a product itself, its a collection of other products. E.g. a bundle of games you can buy together for a discounted price. Bundled items are individually stock managed.

      To summarize, Chained is buy x get y and z free, Bundled is buy x y and z together.

      The differences are subtle, but the applications are different even if there is some overlap.

      • kaze
        July 26, 2012 at 8:33 pm #

        Lets get a example from the real world: Furniture.

        1) I’m selling a room. A room is made of: 1 bed, 1 bed-table and 1 closet.
        2) I create a new product for each of those (3 individual new products).
        3) I create the product Room ABC.
        4) When i buy the Room ABC it has chained the 3 individual products that i created in 2).
        5) Notice how my Room ABC only have included the chained products, nothing more, nothing less.

        What i just did was to create a bundle product.

        Now, you’re right saying that bundles are just a group of products pack together — after all, with a chained product, i could’ve added/included more things than what is chained (or even more, i could’ve created a product that, as you well said, would’ve included/chained some free products).
        But this only means that what the bundle extension does is a “sub-group” of what the chained extension already does. In a different way, sure. With different options, roger that. But all in all, they are the same, or rather, the bundle product only does one thing that the chained product already can do.

        What we (the people who bought the bundle product extension) would have liked to see was those differences presented on the bundle extension, put at work on the chained extension. Its not because we are not “getting it” the difference.

        Overlap as you call it, but they do overlap a lot in my opinion. But theres money to be made, so i guess its okay.

        • kaze
          July 26, 2012 at 8:36 pm #

          oops eheh
          *What we (the people who bought the chained extension)

        • mike
          July 26, 2012 at 9:10 pm #

          That is an example of a bundle yes.

          What about this; I am selling Barbie Supersports. As a promotion I want to include a free pink t-shirt with the game. Do I create a new product to bundle them in one (essentially saying buy these two products for $x). No, I can chain the t-shirt onto barbie. User will see that the t-shirt is included with barbie and get it free.

          The presentation is different.

          Anyhow, these two extensions are by two different authors – both have equal right to be in the marketplace 🙂

          • Jon
            July 26, 2012 at 9:14 pm #

            That wasn’t clear when chained products was released and I bought it specifically to create bundled products as this was a feature I wanted from day 1.

            If I had known bundled products was coming as a separate extension I would have waited. Either way I created a support ticket earlier asking to exchange access from chained products to bundled products. Fingers crossed this won’t be a problem, especially as they are the same price.

        • kaze
          July 26, 2012 at 10:17 pm #

          >> With Chained Products

          1) Barbie supersports is product.
          2) i want to include a free tshirt, so i need to create a product page for the thshirt
          3) I edit the Barbie Supersports. I add the tshirt as a chained product.
          4) now, the Barbie Supersports present on the tabs section the included products, in this case, the tshirt.

          This is a bundle product.

          >> Width Bundle Products

          1) Barbie supersports is product
          2) i want to include a free tshirt, so i need to create a product page for the thshirt
          3) I edit the Barbie Supersports. I add the tshirt as a bundle product.
          4) Now, the Barbie Supersports present on short discription area the products that are included

          This is a bundle product.

          ####

          So the difference is on the presentation like you very well said and i am here to agree with you. But is it a difference worth enough to make a new extension?

          “both have equal right to be in the marketplace”

          So its a yes and at first sight im inclined to agree as well. But the thing is, this is a marketplace that has rules for something to be sold here. I thought one of the rules would be trying to avoid extensions that «overlap» too much. Like this case, precisely to avoid situations like this one.

          To clarify further, i must also add that in my opinion the chained products is actually better solution** because it shows the included products on the tab section. With the bundle extension, the short description is no longer a short description area. If i have 2 or 3 products to bundle, sure, the bundle extension could be better if one prefer the way that extensions presents the included products (the short description is a nice touch). But if the bundle has 6 products, most likely even if one prefer the bundle extension presentation, the tradeoff in usuability doesnt compensate the hurdle of making the user scroll a lot just to get the buy button / attribute section.

          ** if we dont do stock managment. Thats the only real difference that we from the “chained products” would like to see on the chained extension

          Even more, as someone pointed out, this is what its written on the chained extension product page:

          “Everyone loves combo packs (and they sell really well!!) Unfortunately there was no way to create bundled / combo pack products in WooCommerce out of the box. This plugin makes it super easy to create and configure them.”

          Time for someone to do some rewrite i guess…

          • Maire
            July 27, 2012 at 1:56 am #

            I am a bit concerned about the presentation bit too.

            I actually think there is a place for both extensions, but I think it’s just semantics to argue that they are substantially different.

            My problem with chained products is that then the customer can’t see the ‘product description’ tab – it would be great if the chained products AND the product description were visible at once.

            Then the problem with the bundle extension is as was said above that it might result in this incredibly long short description section.

            Anyway i do think both are good extensions I just think they maybe could have been combined into one extension.

          • Manos Psychogyiopoulos
            July 27, 2012 at 7:57 pm #

            Hey Kaze,

            This is Manos, developer of Product Bundles 🙂

            The scenario you describe is not correct. With Bundles you cannot create bundles/promos by editing an existing product.

            Product Bundles is designed for creating standalone products (kits or assembled items) which consist of individually stock managed parts, possibly variable.

            Here’s an example: Let’s say you want to sell weird plush animals, which can be built by choosing parts from different animals. You stock manage plush animal parts individually, and you want your customers to create their toy by choosing between different legs, head and body products, which are variable.

            With Bundles, you can:
            – Create a Weird Animal product, by bundling together the Legs, Head and Body products. Your customers then choose an option for each, and buy their custom plush toy.
            – Create a Weird Wild Animal product, by bundling the Legs, Head and Body products and enabling only the variations related to wild animals.
            – Create an Elephant plush toy, by enabling only the Elephant variations of Legs, Head and Body.

            I hope you get the idea.

            The presentation and logic of Chained products is unsuitable for creating such assembled items, or complex product kits. Bundling can have different meanings, depending on the needs of a particular shop 🙂

            Where Chained Products excels is creating offers based on existing products. Its presentation and structure are unsuitable for creating complex products based on variable, individually stock-managed sub-items.

            Bundles has been created with very special applications and needs in mind, but their complexity means that it can also do some of the things the Chained Products already does.

            Product Bundles offers a solution for shops that couldn’t make the transition to Woocommerce because of the nature of their products.

            For these requirements, the presentation of Product Bundles is the right one. There is no right and wrong approach – if Chained Products covers your needs, then you actually don’t need Product Bundles, and there is no reason to feel cheated 🙂

          • Manos Psychogyiopoulos
            July 27, 2012 at 9:24 pm #

            “Then the problem with the bundle extension is as was said above that it might result in this incredibly long short description section.”

            Maire,

            Product Bundles comes with its own template file that can be modified to remove product excerpts (NOT descriptions). There is no ‘right’ and ‘wrong’.

            Moreover, if you haven’t defined any excerpts, they won’t appear at all.

            I have already explained the rationale behind the ‘list’ approach in other comments – please let me know if anything is unclear. The way customers interact with a product page is not a matter of taste, there are real, practical usability reasons for listing bundled items (along with their options) on the single-product page. Product Bundles intentionally immitates the UI of variable products as close as possible.

  5. John Bash
    July 26, 2012 at 9:11 pm #

    WooCommerce is a brand now and even clients are particularly mentioning this revolutionary plugin in their package. So excited to see the buzz created around WooCommerce. You guys simply rock…

  6. Luke
    July 26, 2012 at 9:23 pm #

    Cant see the reason for complaints.

    This is just how a business works.

    If you bought chained products you did so because you wanted it.

    If you want te bundle extension you will buy that too.

    It’s not a bad thing that there’s overlap, any good market will get it (granted this usually happens when the products are coming from different suppliers)

    Anyway down to the nitty gritty – is there an ETA for the XERO extension?

    I know Adii said it was being tested a month back…

    • mike
      July 26, 2012 at 9:25 pm #

      It’s being tested and audited 😉

      • Luke
        July 26, 2012 at 9:40 pm #

        Woop!!!

    • Jon
      July 26, 2012 at 9:29 pm #

      The complaint is that chained products extension was said to be used for bundles where you could also do proper stock management with it.

      “Everyone loves combo packs (and they sell really well!!) Unfortunately there was no way to create bundled / combo pack products in WooCommerce out of the box. This plugin makes it super easy to create and configure them.”

      However as I outlined in a previous comment it doesn’t offer proper stock management and shows the “bundle” in stock to the customer even if it isn’t. So I bought it because I wanted to do bundles, though it turns out that it isn’t designed for that. So I’ve wasted my money on it when there is now an extension which does do what I wanted.

      If woo substitute the purchase then no problem, but for you to say there is no need to complain is insulting. Have you never returned anything for a refund or exchange because it didn’t do what you wanted?

      • Luke
        July 26, 2012 at 9:37 pm #

        This is just IMHO…

        But you’re not after a refund because you didn’t like the product are you?

        It’s because there’s a better one out there now.

        Did you ask for a refund before hearing about this new product?

        So IMHO no, there’s no grounds to ask for a refund .

        I just bought an iPhone 4s, I won’t ask apple for a refund when the iPhone 5 comes out.

        • Jon
          July 26, 2012 at 9:50 pm #

          I have been asking on the support forum why that wasn’t working and when it was going to be sorted.

          I didn’t ask for a refund as I thought it would be an update coming later and it was the only way to get remotely close to the feature I wanted.

          The iphone5 doesn’t get released 2 months after the iphone4. If you knew the iphone5 was coming for the same price, I imagine you would have waited. Especially if you had bought the iphone4 expecting it to do something it was advertised to do but turns out it only partially fulfils that requirement.

          You said you didn’t understand the complaint, I’m trying to show you the basis for it. I’m not even after a refund, I am after an exchange for the product that does do what I originally was expecting the first one to do.

          Hopefully with more knowledge on the situation explained to you, the complaint is now clear.

      • Nirav Mehta
        July 26, 2012 at 10:32 pm #

        We develop the Chained products extension.

        @Jon, @Kaze: We added a feature in 1.1 version that will not show “Add to cart” on the main product if any of the chained products are out of stock. Stock management has been there from v1 – but it checked availability after clicking add to cart on the main product. We’ve flipped that in 1.1.

        We’ve also added some other enhancements and have many more things planned.

        Yes, there is an overlap of solutions in the two plugins (as much as we don’t like it, this is bound to happen in a growing marketplace).

        “Chained” aims at making it super easy to create bundles / combos. The combo has a fixed price and does not offer variation choices. You can chain additional products to existing products (or create a new product if you wish).

        “Bundles” on the other hand allows choosing product options, configuring shipping / qty for items included in the bundle. So it’s excellent choice for assemblies / kits etc.

        Overall, both are different. As a matter of fact, developer of Bundles mentioned he uses both for his own shop.

        We did not call “Chained products” “Bundles” for a reason 🙂 We could take that name (chained came before bundles), but there is more on the roadmap. And I think people who bought Chained, will appreciate that.

        • kaze
          July 26, 2012 at 11:12 pm #

          “The combo has a fixed price and does not offer variation choices”

          But if i create a simple product with chained products, save, then change it to variable product i can have options. I never understood why this limitation existed in the first place but i guess you left a good clue on why…

          So this leave us with bundle products being an exact copy (in terms of final result) of something that chained already does. With a different presentation, with bundle products “destroying” the area that is supposed to be called «Short Description». And with the little detail on the stock managment options on bundle products extension where i can add stock directly — that we from the chained products would like to have as this eleminates completely the need of the bundle extension.

          Oh well, its pointless its already done and after all we are just the stupid costumers that need to be educated about the differences beceause we are dumb. Or not.

          • Manos Psychogyiopoulos
            July 27, 2012 at 8:17 pm #

            Hi Kaze,

            Again, your approach is wrong 🙂

            If the variations of your hypothetical product come from mixing different, individually stock managed parts/products, you simply need a different product type.

            That’s what Product Bundles is made for.

            If you don’t need to stock-manage the included parts, then you can just create a single variable product, or use Gravity Forms Add-Ons.

            ‘Selling things together’ can be done in many different ways on every e-commerce platform. Again, bundling can mean a lot of different things, depending on what you want to sell and how.

            Here’s another example that wasn’t possible without Product Bundles:

            You run a shop that sells and installs PV (photovoltaic) systems. You stock-manage panels, cables and inverters and you want to sell 5 and 10kW kits based on inverter A, which comes in 5 and 10kW versions and 7 & 14kW kits based on inverter B (again comes in 2 variations).

            Product Bundles allows you to create a 5kW version, a 7kW version, etc, where each one includes the necessary number of panels and the right variation of inverter for each size.

            This is why the presentation of a product bundle imitates the presentation of variable product. From a product perspective, the options are just that – options, but from a shop manager’s perspective the product bundle is a collection of individually stock-managed items, nothing more.

            I hope you now understand more clearly why Product Bundles is offered as a separate extension, and why it wouldn’t have been possible to make one with all functionality 🙂

        • Jon
          July 26, 2012 at 11:15 pm #

          Hi Nirav, thanks for posting,

          It’s good to know you have fixed the chained product showing in stock issue, but the current version is still 1.0 according to this site and also my wordpress install. When is it coming out?

          Quantity bundles is also something that I wanted, so bundled products would be a better fit still. I bought chained products only to do bundles and that was what it was advertised as.

          I do like the fact chained products lists all the included items in an “included products” tab. Kaze pointed this out above. But it isn’t a deal breaker compared to the quantity bundle feature being missing.

          You mentioned other things in the roadmap, are these listed anywhere. Without knowing what they are, it is hard to know if they are worth waiting for.

          I do also have the Dynamic Pricing plugin that allows for discounts of multiple quantities. So perhaps in combo I may be fine just sticking with Chained Products. I’ll have to do some testing with them.

          It seems daft to have two separate plugins to achieve the different ways of having products bundled, especially if they don’t display the same way in the front end to the customer. The only way I see around this is for them to just incorporate the features missing from one to another… (unless the dynamic pricing plugin will combine as I’d like)

          The trouble is lack of communication and documentation, though I did put that in the woothemes survey.

          • Manos Psychogyiopoulos
            July 27, 2012 at 8:54 pm #

            Hi Jon,

            As I’ve already pointed out, there is no ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ way of doing things, when we’re talking about different concepts/applications. ‘Bundling’ can have different meanings and requirements, and the documentation of Product Bundles points that out clearly.

            As a developer, I absolutely require both for my projects:

            – Chained Products is the right solution for creating combos/promotions on top of existing items, or for creating simple bundles where no customer input is necessary.

            – Product Bundles is the right solution for creating custom products/kits that consist of variable sub-products, which are also sold as standalone items. That’s why a product bundle is presented in almost the same way as a variable product – to facilitate customer input.

            These are two entirely different concepts, that coulnd’t possibly be implemented as a one-fits-all solution.

            For simple applications, one can achieve the same result with both, or even with Forced Sells. But once the requirements get more specific, there is a need for an entirely different approach.

            I am sure that shop managers who rely of Product Bundles or Chained Products (and not either of them) can give you a lot of usage examples to underline my point 😉

          • Jon
            July 27, 2012 at 9:17 pm #

            Hi Manos,

            Your explanations have made things clearer, but I point back to the usual complaint of poor documentation.

            If the differences had been outlined at the start in a more explicit manner the confusion wouldn’t have ensued. Mike’s earlier replies also made things worse imo. His replies still aren’t that clear.

            I wanted a single plugin to do two types of bundles. Offer a selection of items from my store and combine them into one product but at a discounted price. Offer the same product in multiple quantities also at a reduced price. (Dynamic pricing can half do this, but not as to make a product of say 10x a single product, you have to add 10 of the single product to achieve the same thing)

            The documentation page for bundled products is focused on creating bundles of existing products (one of methods I wanted) and also quantities of the same product (the second method I wanted which chained products can’t yet do). I can’t clearly see anything on there regarding component bundle types that you gave as examples in these comments. Hence all the confusion. Though as I’ve stated I prefer the way chained products displays using a tab rather than the short description area like a variable product. There doesn’t seem to be any mention of creating products from component parts like your examples in these comments. Though I don’t see why chained products couldn’t do the same thing anyway…

            So if chained products was updated to allow simple chains of the same product then from my perspective everything would be sorted. You can already add multiples of the same product in the chained products area when setting a chained product up. It just doesn’t work properly from a stock management point of view and will just remove 1 of said item. Hopefully until them I can utilise dynamic pricing to get the effect I wish.

            With two very similar extensions, clear communication to us the customers is needed.

          • Manos Psychogyiopoulos
            July 27, 2012 at 10:00 pm #

            Hey Jon,

            Totally agree on the last sentence.

            However, the documentation of Product Bundles is very clear on what is possible with it:

            It specifically states that it allows bundling variable items together to create product >kitsassemblies< of individual parts.

            Moreover, in the 'Advanced Options' section, it is clearly stated that you can activate specific variations in the case of variable bundled items.

            Finally, it even indicates its current limitations.

            'Component products' are obviously nothing more than assemblies of existing variable items. A 'component product' is still a bundle, since it consists of individually-stock-managed parts.

            Terminology is indeed subtle, but it can make a whole lot of difference, as well as cause confusion. Since a bundle can mean a lot of different things, the documentation of 'Product Bundles' focuses on what the extension can do in terms of function, not possible applications. Still, if you take a look at the 'Variation Filtering' section, you can get a hint of more applications than the obvious ones.

            When Chained Products came out, it was the only solution that offered bundling functionalities – therefore its documentation reflects precisely that state of things.

            However, I find it hard to replace it with Product Bundles for the projects I work on: it allows you to effortlessly build a (simple) combo/bundle on top of an existing item, and then un-do that after X sales/days. Product Bundles can't and will not do that, because that's not what it's been made for.

            Still, Chained Products was made in a way that allows you to see the "parent product" as a container for creating bundles – that's really cool. For simple bundles, it is unbeatable, because it shows your customers what's "in the box" in a separate tab, without lengthy descriptions/excerpts.

            I will have to agree with you that, in this particular case, it might have been helpful to include a clear comparison of the two plugins to avoid confusion. But still, both myself and Nirav are here to clear that out for everyone.

  7. Edward McIntyre
    July 27, 2012 at 7:04 pm #

    Haha, of course Product Bundles come a week after I bought Chained Products to try and do exactly that.

  8. Manos Psychogyiopoulos
    July 28, 2012 at 3:03 pm #

    @kaze, @jon, @maire
    Here’s another take on the subject from a colleague – thanks Bar:

    “If Product Bundles existed before Chained Products, people would still need a way to add items to existing products – and Chained Products would be born. Besides, what would you do if, for example, you needed to create a promo based on a kit created with Product Bundles?”

    I hope this makes things even more clear.

    • Joe
      August 2, 2012 at 12:28 pm #

      i have to admit when i saw this drop I got all firey red like others, but as i continued to read, I became somewhat less upset. I completely agree with the several people who have already been quite vocal about those of us who bought chained products(which is far from ideal even for what it’s stated for). the problem being a phillips screw, chained products being the screwdriver that’s 2 sizes too big, it works but its awkward and has it’s own set of problems.

      As long as they finish chained products though and don’t leave us who bought it a week before bundled products camed out, which sorry to reiterate once again, but no amount of lip service is going to convince me that bundled products is a completely different revolutionary idea completely apart from chained products. i see it as 80% of the original code base with some modifications added in to apply to a slightly different use case. it’s more like comparing mayo to miracle whip. I think the developers could have/should have got together and combined the two, would have saved one of them most of the work and so many of us wouldn’t feel ripped off.

      I think communication could have been better, alot of people developing extensions are quite vocal about their progress or intentions, this one seemed to come out of nowhere with nobody expecting it right after everyone bought the first one expecting it to develop into something a little more advanced. That’s the problem with such a substantial overlap like this, it weakens the trust we have with the 3rd party developers communication skillls and whereas before we had no reservations buying an extension if it was close to fitting our needs, I’m definately going to reccomend my clients hold out from now on to see if something like this happens again.

      I’m not so upset as my client is. They don’t enjoy having to manually mark completed several times a day on alll the new orders for our webinar product that happens to bundle some of our previous products as a bonus.

      Seems pretty clear to me that a webinar with several downloadable products would qualify as a bundle if i were to ask anyone not familiar with the new meaning the bundled developer has decided to throw around the word bundled.

      It just pisses me off that I can’t have a webinar product with 6 chained downloadable products attached to it marked off as a downloadable product, the results are a customer support nightmare. Turning it off results in a backend maintenance pain in the ass, the user experience is lackluster.

      seems like bundled products is just another way to chain products, and that most of the codebase

      • SomewhereWarm
        August 2, 2012 at 1:11 pm #

        Joe, I’m sorry for your experience – I merely shared my viewpoint as a an end-user and website developer – and, by the way, I *am* the developer of Product Bundles.

        It is perhaps pointless to argue on a technical basis, but:

        1) I can give you more than 5 different scenarios/definitions of “Bundling”. It is impossible to implement all of them with the same core logic – some bundles need to work on top of an existing product type, and some require a new product type.

        2) This fundamental difference changes the codebase, complexity, expandability and interoperability with other plugins 100%, therefore your mayo vs miracle whip example is a bit… irrelevant. The bottom line is that this difference requires 2 different approaches, even if, according to you, a bundle is always a bundle. It’s not.

        If I can’t convince you on the above points, but I’m pretty sure that someone from WooThemes will help you solve your issue, which is obviously sales related.

  9. Joe Jenkins
    July 29, 2012 at 12:02 am #

    I have chained products and feel that the new extension could be better at times. However, I’ll buy a licence for it.

    I removed the price/free text below the chained products and edited the text above those items. If we had the option of whether to include the price/free section or we could edit it, plus edit the text above the chained items on a per item basis, that would be great.

    In the end, the cost minus 30% as a club member is a good price to pay for unlimited sites.

    Joe

    • SomewhereWarm
      July 29, 2012 at 2:13 am #

      @Joe

      Are you referring to Product Bundles?

      – The prices of bundled items appear only if per-item pricing is used. Would you like to have the option to hide those?

      – The short descriptions of bundled items are essentially their ‘Product Short Descriptions’ (excerpts), which are directly editable on each Edit Product admin page.

      • Joe Jenkins
        July 29, 2012 at 9:16 am #

        No, I was talking about the Chained Products extension.

        As you can see here:

        http://moonworks.co.uk/shop/all-43-retired-themes

        I’ll be buying the Product Bundles though, as our new WP review site will be putting both extensions through their paces to see just how good they both are :o)

  10. Joe Jenkins
    July 29, 2012 at 9:01 am #

    I’d like to reply, but this hasn’t been happening for the past 30 minutes

  11. Joe Jenkins
    July 29, 2012 at 9:04 am #

    Ah, finally, it puts one of my replies on here. It seems you don’t like websites with forward slashes on it, it might be worth mentioning that on the form, as I just spent a while writing a post and then it just wasn’t there.

    ok, the short version this time, as I’m not going to write up the whole thing again.

  12. Joe Jenkins
    July 29, 2012 at 9:13 am #

    From what I can tell, there is a lot of confusion in regards to the two extensions ‘Chained Products’ and ‘Bundled Products’.

    While I understand how this confusion has been caused, I thought I’d see if I could help clear matters up and, hopefully, not confuse things even more.

    I’ll be looking at two examples, one for each of the items. While they may sound almost identical, there are differences with the two.

    For this example, I’ll be using the example of a store that has a lot of hoodies to sell, and they want to find the best way to do so. The store decides that it can afford to use a surplus of T-Shirts to help shift them.

    CHAINED PRODUCTS
    You decide that the price of a T-Shirt is worth losing to get rid of the hoodies, so you offer the hoodies at the requested price, but a free T-Shirt will be included with every hoodie sold. You just add the T-Shirt to the hoodie product in admin, and the customer sees that they will receive a free T-Shirt with their order. This involves no extra products being added to the system.

    PRODUCT BUNDLES
    In this scenario, you decide to make an offer if the customer buys a hoodie and a T-Shirt at the same time. They just have to pick the bundle, and pay the special price for buying both items. This involves creating a new product, the bundle itself.

    I’m saying this without having yet purchased Product bundles, but this is what I get from reading the information given here.

    • SomewhereWarm
      July 29, 2012 at 10:17 am #

      Hey Joe,

      sounds cool – keep in mind that Product Bundles has been designed with product kits and assembled products in mind (esp ones made of variable products). Read my plush toy example above and you’ll get a better idea of what I mean. I hope your review will help clear up things a bit more, focusing on what each extension can/cannot do.

    • Jon
      July 29, 2012 at 12:19 pm #

      Joe,

      Your product bundles example is how I’ve been using chained products. What you said is fine, if you want to just link them as you said.

      The way I wanted was to offer both the hoodie and the tshirt as separate products, but as a bundle with a discount if you bought both together. This means adding a third product with those two items chained together.

      • Joe
        July 29, 2012 at 12:27 pm #

        Yeah, that would mean adding a new product doing it that way.

        If you don’t want to have it showing the price or free, so they are just buying the bundle, you could remove that code from Chained Products, just as I have here:

        http://moonworks.co.uk/shop/all-43-retired-themes

        However, the downside of that, is that you must have the text at the top and nothing for the price (or the same if you change that text), on every bundle you do.

        I think it is best to have both extensions and use which ever does the best job for that particular need. It’s like have two screwdrivers, they may be almost identical, but depending on the job, one of them will be better than the other.

  13. Maire
    July 29, 2012 at 10:45 am #

    Hi Manos –

    That’s good to know that the excerpts can be adjusted in bundles so you don’t end up with too long a short product description. I always have a pretty decent length short product description because some people don’t look down to see the longer product description, plus if its a chained product (for example) it wont be visible.

    I agree there’s a different use for chained products and bundled products.

    I think the problem is that a lot of people WANTED bundled products but got chained products because it did in a pinch.

    If they’d known bundles was coming they’d have waited.

    Someone said that this is wrong because if you have an iphone 3 you dont complain and ask for a refnud when iphone 4s came out.

    This isn’t accurate. If i bought an iphone 3 right when it came out, and then an iphone 4 came out a month later, I’d be annoyed, and rightfully so.

    I definitely feel there’s a place for both extensions and plan to use both myself.

    I think the problem is that so many people actually wanted bundles and now realise they’re going to have to change again because the right extension has come out.

    • SomewhereWarm
      July 30, 2012 at 8:22 am #

      Maire,

      Now I see what you meant – no, you can’t override excerpts on a bundle level, but that’s an idea to keep in mind.

      Excerpts are normally ~50 words max, by the way. However, I’ll reiterate my previous point – since there is a template you can fiddle with, you can even use a custom field for per-product (proper) excerpts and display that (when available) in the case of bundled products.

      From a developer’s perspective, it is unrealistic to cater to every imaginable need from the very beginning. Options should be there to be used – however, development continues, and if a particular request is repeated frequently, it will find its way to the extension.

  14. Maire
    July 30, 2012 at 1:32 am #

    Is there any update on when pixelpress commerce will be fixed? I think it looks perfect for what i was wanting but it isn’t functioning properly yet?

  15. John
    July 30, 2012 at 6:43 pm #

    After wading through the arguments about product bundles, i’d like to ask if the Pixel child is supposed to count as this month’s second theme or whether we are going to get a nice shiny new one…? Bearing in mind we only got one theme last month…..:-(

  16. Huynh Hieu
    July 31, 2012 at 11:37 am #

    I definitely feel there’s a place for both extensions and plan to use both myself.

  17. Maire
    August 3, 2012 at 4:19 am #

    Not sure if I am doing something wrong, but I thought that product bundles would allow people to build their own bundle.

    I can’t see anyway at all for people to choose whether they want a product added to the bundle or not??????

    • SomewhereWarm
      August 3, 2012 at 9:30 am #

      Did you read the docs?

      There is dedicated tab for adding bundled products. Of course, you need to select the new ‘Product bundle’ type first.

      • Maire
        August 3, 2012 at 10:20 am #

        Thanks, yes I did see all that, I’m not talking about something at that level of incompetence.

        I want people to be able to build their own bundle.

        I assumed that an extension called ‘product bundles’ would enable this.

        How can I have

        A product

        Optional accessories

        People who are buying the product can then add on additional components as desired – ie build their own bundle.

        For example

        a computer

        add on ram

        add on warranty

        etc.

        Please don’t suggest product addons.

        I am kind of managing it with attributes & variations but this doesn’t track inventory etc.

        • Joe Jenkins
          August 3, 2012 at 10:25 am #

          This sounds more like something the Gravity Forms extension would do best.

          http://woocommerce.com/extension/gravityforms-product-addons/

          I would class a bundle as something the store owner would put together.

          • Joe
            August 3, 2012 at 10:49 am #

            Hi Joe, yes we’ve been using gravity forms, but it looks like crap and it doesn’t manage inventory etc.

            I imagine there are trillions of stores that would like this functionality.

          • Maire
            August 3, 2012 at 10:50 am #

            Lol think I put my name as Joe? Whoops!

        • SomewhereWarm
          August 3, 2012 at 3:33 pm #

          Hey Maire,

          First off, you can add simple + variable products to a bundle. In one of the next versions, products with add-ons (or gravity forms add-ons) will also be supported.

          What you want to do is give the customer *the option* to include an *existing* product with real stock, right?

          This is not possible with this version of Bundles.

          The only workaround would be to create a new variable product for each of your options with variations: ‘No X’ (0 price), X1 (X1 price), X2 (X2 price).

          It would make more sense to ask from add-ons developers to make it possible to tie an add-on to the stock of an existing item. However, I will consider your suggestion for future updates.

          • SomewhereWarm
            August 3, 2012 at 5:27 pm #

            By the way, your suggestion to allow marking bundled items as optional is a great one and something I will seriously consider for one of the upcoming versions in the near future 🙂

          • Maire
            August 4, 2012 at 3:51 am #

            Thanks for clarifying!

            Yes, we have been using gravity addons for the options but I’m changing everything to using product variations, because it looks much tidier on the front end.

            I know that customers definitely do like having these options and it’s a way to grab a little more sales from each transaction.

            Your solution is a good one for now re using product variations.

  18. BMT
    August 5, 2012 at 10:29 am #

    Wow woo commerce has becoming more famous day by day.

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