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Two weeks ago I posted a video in which I demonstrated the new features coming in BigCommerce 5.6. Well, we’ve finished our development, testing, documenting and marketing collateral and BigCommerce 5.6 is now ready to go!
All new stores created as of right now will be running on version 5.6 straight away. For existing customers, if you’re running BigCommerce 5.5 (check the bottom of the screen in your BigCommerce control panel) then you will automatically be upgraded to BigCommerce 5.6 some time in the next 24 hours. If you’re running BigCommerce 5.0 you will see the option to schedule an upgrade shortly. Any template customizations you’ve made wont be affected by the 5.6 release because there are no changes to templates.
So, what’s in version 5.6 I hear you ask? Well, it’s a minor update based almost exclusively on features you requested and voted for in our community. We also snuck in a secret marketing feature which I’ll detail below.
Here’s the complete list of features available right now in BigCommerce 5.6:
- Take your store down for maintenance – You as an admin still have full access to your store so you can make and preview design changes, add/remove products, etc all without your customers seeing. You can specify your own custom message which will be shown to store visitors.
- Set the starting order number – Let’s face it, no one wants to receive an email saying “Your order ID is 1”. In BigCommerce 5.6 the default starting order number is 100 but you can change it to whatever you like from Settings -> Miscellaneous.
- Block the shipping dimensions message – When you add/edit a product with no shipping dimensons you see an alert message telling you that you didn’t enter them. You can now tick “Don’t show this message again” and it will be gone forever. This is a per-user setting.
- Tracking numbers and links in emails – This was the most popular feature request on our community page. If an order has a tracking number and you change its status to shipped or completed, your customer will get an email automatically with their tracking number and a link to track their order on the shipping provider’s website.
- Import and export formats are now synched – We’ve created a new “Bulk Edit” template which you can use to export and then re-import products. No more missing out on editing certain fields or mapping fields manually – everything is included and automatic.
- 301 redirects – If you’ve switched to BigCommerce (which over 25% of you have) and want to maintain your search engine rankings then you can easily create your own 301 redirects from your store’s control panel – no more emailing us a spreadsheet manually. You can also bulk import in a variety of formats too, including CSV and Google sitemap.
- Update your own DNS settings – Right from the Tools menu you can add, edit and delete your own DNS records.
Sell on Facebook With BigCommerce SocialShop
As well as the features listed above, BigCommerce 5.6 includes the ability to sell your products on Facebook. Facebook has over 400 million active users and BigCommerce SocialShop is a Facebook application which lets you add a “Shop” tab to your Facebook fan page. Your fans can click a link to buy a product in your BigCommerce store and more importantly they can post your products to their wall.
Here’s a video showing how it works:
… and here’s a few screenshots:
BigCommerce SocialShop is a Facebook application that allows BigCommerce merchants to reach more customers and sell their products through Facebook – reaching Facebook’s enormous 400 million active users in the process.
By displaying a “Shop” tab on your Facebook fan page, BigCommerce SocialShop lets your fans, prospects and customers click on a product to purchase it from your BigCommerce store. They can also share your products directly through Facebook as part of their news stream.
BigCommerce SocialShop is the ultimate way to leverage social commerce to grow your ecommerce business, and it’s available exclusively for BigCommerce merchants at no charge.
BigCommerce SocialShop Benefits
- Add a “Shop” tab to your Facebook fan page – harness the power of social commerce to reach new customers and encourage repeat purchasing from existing customers
- Connect with customers and prospects in a social context instead of a transactional one to build trust and loyalty
- Anyone can click on a product to see photos, learn more and buy directly through your BigCommerce store
- Anyone can share their favorite products with friends via their news stream with just one click
- The BigCommerce SocialShop application takes just seconds to add to your Facebook page and requires no technical knowledge
Less Development. More Marketing.
Let us future-proof your backend. You focus on building your brand.