CS-Cart 2.1.2 Released

Branch 2.1 goes forward at a steady gait! A new CS-Cart version 2.1.2 becomes available today.

This new release not only offers a number of routine fixes and improvements, but it features a few innovations that make it really remarkable.

Block Caching to Enhance Storefront Performance

Recently we’ve been working on speeding up the customer frontend of CS-Cart software. To solve this issue, we experimented with different caching capabilities that are known to reduce page load time well.

Starting from CS-Cart version 2.1.2 we equip our shopping cart system with the ability to save the HTML output of blocks that appear on the storefront in the CS-Cart cache. When the next visitor requests the same block, the output is easily retrieved from the cache without going through all the database queries and addressing multiple files. When you make changes to the storefront contents like categories, products and static pages, new HTML output will be generated and cached automatically.

This is extremely helpful for the most frequently used elements of the storefront as well as parts of pages that don’t change too often, but are somewhat heavy to generate. Clearly, it makes more sense to generate the output once and then use it again and again. And shoppers will certainly enjoy the performance of your web store.

And that’s what our tests showed when we compared the load of the home page of CS-Cart 2.1.1 and CS-Cart 2.1.2.

cscart-performance-comparison

Catalog Mode to Showcase Products

Normally, the products on the storefront can be added to the shopping cart and purchased directly on your website.

catalog_mode_off

Running your store in the catalog mode makes it possible to only showcase products on your website, but not really sell them there. The Add to Cart button is replaced with the Buy Now button linked to an external website where the product is actually sold.

catalog_mode_on

This functionality can help you built a full-fledged online catalog with affiliate links to partner websites or, for instance, sell products that must be ordered by phone. Besides, in CS-Cart you can combine both modes and run the store as a shopping cart and a catalog, and thus sell products directly in your store and showcase products from companion websites.

Instant Product Search to Improve Customer Experience

“This enhancement for the storefront shows search results as the shopper types in the search bar. So, customers can get to the right product much faster because they don’t have to finish typing a full search term and even click on Search.

Moreover, this can help guide your customers’ search: many of them may not know the exact product name plus the small product thumbnail in the search results gives the first impression of the product.

quick_search


You’re welcome to download CS-Cart 2.1.2 from your personal Help Desk account or simply try the online demo.

To review the complete list of fixes and improvements in CS-Cart 2.1.2, please refer to the release changelog.

Your feedback is much appreciated! Please post your suggestions and ideas to the CS-Cart Idea Tracker and report about all found bugs to our publiс bugtracker.

7 Responses to “CS-Cart 2.1.2 Released”

  1. Davi says:

    Seems very good, keep working on performance! Since your shopping cart is growing, clients with big traffic are moving to it, and they need more than just a cart full of feature.

    I’m one of this case, I don’t use half of your features, but I need performance because I have high traffic (10.000 visitors/day) and lot of products.

    The last version (2.1.1) was already stable, and I think that with this improvement 2.1.2 is great. Very soon I will do test. Thanks.

    • Alexey Karpukhin says:

      For the current branch 2.1.x we’ve focused our development efforts on improving the software performance and security. So, new performance enhancements will be introduced soon. To see what is next, please consult our roadmap.

  2. ArnoBT says:

    Great
    I think CSCart acknowlegdes that partnering is becoming key in internetshopping and acting as sales channel is a good way to make a living.

    Great also the search tool advancement!

  3. Jacob says:

    Love the update – really fantastic performance enhancements and the catalog mode is something that we’ve been toying around with as we have a number of folks who have offered referral bounty, etc. or sell things too large for us to warehouse.

    Assuming I can track how often these links are clicked, this could prove to be a remarkable tool (we’d love to know the clickthrough rate so that we could use this feature to also market test products we are not confident about or have too little prior history selling to make a determination of their profitability.)

    • Alexey Karpukhin says:

      Thank you for your kind words, Jacob! And your suggestion on how to improve the catalog mode in CS-Cart seems really nice. Can you please post it to our idea tracker? If other users support it actively, we will add this functionality to CS-Cart.

  4. Jack says:

    why dont you design a model to let us put the shipping time on the product page ??