White paper for a new App/Site with eCommerce
Written by Janne Wassberg
To begin with I would like to inform all of you that my first choice of tool is Webflow and I love to use it. I have a background as system developer and programmer with 35+ years of experience. But love the NoCode movement. I will come with both good and bad things about developing this app/site. Pls. excuse my English, Swedish is my native language.
Last Friday I went to a local restaurant to eat lunch. The restaurant is owned by a friend of me. He told me that he wanted a mobile app for his customers to give better service at his restaurant.
At the moment they have lunch every day at the restaurant, they also deliver lunch to companies and private persons each day. The food not sold will be packed into lunch boxes which can be bought at any time by the customers.
My friend said he wanted an app for private persons and companies to book delivery of lunches. At this time my brain started to build this eCommerce site with Webflow.
With this fantastic tool I built an launched the app/site in 6 days (almost). This is because Webflow is such a good tool. At the same time as, i said (almost) Webflow eCommerce is missing some basic things, and in my opinion the eCommerce needs some urgent fixes. The product can and will improve but in my opinion it’s not ready yet but very small things that need fixes can be done in a short time.
This is what I came up with. A web site (nothing to talk about Webflow is the best). Two different booking pages, one for lunch delivery and one for buying/booking lunch boxes. This is how the business works in reality, lunch delivery can be ordered until 09:45 am if the customer want’s delivery the same day, lunch boxes can be picked up until 3:00 pm each day.
My fried said that he need to close the sales at certain points, not close all the sales but part of the sales. He wanted to close the sales for delivery at 09:45 am.
The solution: I added a system file (collection) to handle this. Delivery open/closed, Lunch boxes open/closed and eCommerce in service mode. With this solution I can use Conditional Visibility to show and hide layout object.
Since I can’t nest collections the solution is ok but not perfect. I was able to show and hide parts of the layout with this solution, waring boxes/information telling the user what was open, closed or in service mode. If I could have been able to use nested collection I could have closed down parts of the eCommerce.
Suggestion to Webflow: Allow nested collections (not critical)
I did all the design tested as much as I could in the development mode added some important fields to the product collection to be sure that the delivery would happened the correct day (no payment. no check out, no mails, no order to look at and more stuff I could not test).
It was looking good and I was happy. Told my customer to pay for the hosting so I could do the final testing before going live. But the reality is this, we need a full test environment for eCommerce before we can ask our customers to pay for hosting. The site was not working as expected.
Suggestion to Webflow: Full test environment of eCommerce (critical)
We have to respect our client’s
Now when I could do my final testing (hosting paid) before going live I found a lot of things not working. My guess is that they have not been found since we can’t test them.
Let’s start with the mail sent out from Webflow.
I have now figured out how all emails are sent when doing an order.
All collaborators/staff accounts will receive the order confirmation, including the Administrator/designer. Why should the developer/Administrator receive an order email? That will fill my mail box with orders from my customer this is a major BUG
When you set up the emails for your customer you need to do some planning about the mail’s sent out by the eCommerce.
The Project/Forms/”Send from” sends mail to given address regarding form submissions
The eCommerce general setting customer support email will be added as a link at the bottom of your order emails
All collaborators/staff accounts will receive the order confirmations.
Suggestion to Webflow: Fix email automation (critical)
In my opinion it can be solved 2 way’s
- Option for each collaborator saying order email yes/no
- A new field in the configuration with email addresses that will receive order confirmations
Problem with mail layout
There are big limitations in the email design to customers. In my case I do not want any images. You can’t remove images from the standard email
Suggestion to Webflow: Fix email layout. Can be an option saying images yes/no (critical)
No translations or changes of the text for additional information, Phone, message and gift. In my case they must be used since the site offers delivery.
Suggestion to Webflow: Fix email text’s for additional info (critical, can’t go live)
In Sweden we do not use state/province. If you leave the field blank (not required) it will show NULL in the email
Suggestion to Webflow: Fix email State/Province (not critical)
It’s not possible to add any extra field regarding the product to the email layout. I think this is really strange. I’m sure most of the designers will modify the product collection to their needs and want to show it in the email or in other places (coming back to that issue9.
In our case the delivery is done on certain weekdays and need to be showed in the mail. Need to add custom product field to the mail.
Suggestion to Webflow: Adding fields to the mail (critical)
Since I could not add any fields to the order email I was thinking, this is easy to fix with an internal report (page) that admin can access with a password.
My plan was to build a report (Page) with orders containing all products in the order and showing my custom field in the db (collection). In my case weekdays for delivery.
BUT I was surprised. It’s NOT possible to use the order collection at all! Can’t build a custom page and there is no collection page for the order collection? How did Webflow think. Showing data will not destroy data, can’t se any problem.
In my case it’s very critical since I can’t add any custom product fields to my email. I need to show order/product custom info somewhere.
Suggestion to Webflow: Possiblity to show order data with custom fields (critical)
Another solution to the order problem can be some custom functionality to the order in the admin program (Page). It would be nice or a solution to my other problems with the order if I could add fields in the admin/Collaborator interface. In the Staff view of the order you can select fields both to order and product to be shown.
Suggestion to Webflow: Ability to show order data with custom fields in the staff view (not critical)
Since I have been writing about the Staff/Admin/Collaborator aka Order interface I do have a reaction. When presenting stats i think you have to inform us that the sales values are calculated after the fees from the payment provider has been deducted.
Since I was doing live tests with very low prices I was surprised of the values shown. I went into Stripe to se what happened. The total price fore the order was deducted with transactions fees showing a sales value minus the transaction fee.
Suggestion to Webflow: Information on calculation or switch on how to calculate (not critical)
Finaly a MAJOR BUG tax calculation is not working as expected. In Sweden tax is 12% for prepared food and 25% for normal tax. The system is treating everything as 25% tax and I can’t use the tax calculation.
The second BUG regarding tax is the text/translation. It’s not possible to change the text printed on the page to what you want, it shows a standard text in English and can not be configured in the system.
Suggestion to Webflow:
- Fix the tax tables (critical)
- A function to add your own tax calculation (critical)
- Add function to change the text (critical can’t go live)
This was my short story about Webflow eCommerce. Feel free to copy my text or send me a mail and I will send you the document.
You guys at Webflow pls. split this up with all bugs so you got them to work. As I said before I LOVE Webflow but it must work. We have to think about our customers.