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Locator Style Updates

A built-in feature on all Store Locator Plus products from the free WPSLP downloadable plugin to the fully managed MySLP service is one-click deployment of new interface styles.    Our locator Style Gallery server is updated form time-time-time with new styles you can try as well as tweaks to existing styles.

Today’s Updates

We cleaned up the styling for the hours that are displayed in the results listing , placing them on their own line in the results output.   This update is available to all MySLP and WPSLP users.

Map with hours
Map with hours

 

We also cleaned up the Directory Landing Page for users that employ the directory feature for WPSLP Power.

The change is immediately available to the following locator styles:

Updating Styles

Don’t worry, if you selected a locator style already it will not change even if we update your selected style on our server.   If you want to update your selected style to or latest version you must select a different style from the plugin gallery first, then re-select the style you were using.

Keep in mind that some styles in our Style Gallery will change your locator settings.  The styles that change settings clearly note that they will do so in the description.    Read the descriptions before clicking that “Activate” button.

How To Select A New Style

For MySLP start from Advanced Options in your dashboard.

For WPSLP start from Store Locator Plus on your admin login.

Go to Settings > View

In the Appearance section you will see a list of available styles from our Style Gallery.

Hover over the bottom edge of the “card” showing the style information and click the Select button when it appears.

Selecting A New Locator  Style
Selecting A New Locator Style

How To Update Your Style

Follow the above steps and start by selecting a locator style that you are not currently using.

Follow the above steps and re-select the style you were using originally.  This will re-load the style and the settings from our gallery server.

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Power 4.9.1 Improves Location Import

Store Locator Plus Power 4.9.1 improves location imports. It is available for WordPress now and will be updated in our end-of-year release for MySLP users.   Here it what was patched and improved.

All Users (MySLP and WPSLP)

Address 2 column on CSV import files was incorrectly being mapped to the address field.   This has been resolved.

The location import processing has vastly improved progress indicators on the import sub tab.  Check them out.

Power 4.9.2 Import Processing Progress
Power 4.9.2 Import Processing Progress Bar

WordPress Specific

Store Pages custom post types , that are included with Power, correctly registers with WordPress 4.9 showing the sidebar menu.

Power has been updated to work on servers running PHP 5.3.  You really should upgrade to PHP 5.6 if you value site security, not too mention performance.  PHP 5.3 has been out-of-date for several years now.  Actually jump right to PHP 7 if you can.

General Notes

Import and Basic Auth

The new import process requires that your site be able to run WP Cron.  Some hosts and site admins turn that off for “security reasons”, but there is limited-if-any security risk with that process.  Not running it not only will prevent the new imports from running but stops lots of other things from working in WordPress; like automated updates.

If your site is using basic authentication, you’ll know if it is, the import processor cannot start the second (reading the CSV file) and third stages (geocoding locations) automatically.    You’ll need to be logged in as an authorized user and surf to your website/wp-cron.php to kick things off.     Some development and staging sites use basic authentication to prevent a casual web surfer or search bot from accessing a site they are working on.

Marker Not Found Notice On Settings Page

If you are seeing “marker not found” notifications when going to your Settings tab in SLP, this could be an obvious indication that basic auth is running on your site.    Our marker-testing uses the built-in WordPress “get this web thing” function which access something, like your marker URL , as if it is a “Joe Public” web user just surfing the web WITHOUT typing in special access codes or passwords.     As a side note, if you are seeing that notification there is a good chance that someone visiting your site with a browser you’ve not tested yet is getting a map with no markers on it.

Tag Based Location Searches

No, we’ve not completely fixed the TAG search in this release.   The tag searching is better, but still not 100%.  We are actively chasing down that bug and a few others for the SLP 4.9.2 + Power 4.9.2 release.

Other Updates

We are working on getting Premier to run on PHP 5.3 servers (you ARE going to upgrade to PHP 5.6, right?) along with some other minor patches.

If you have issues please post in the forum (this shows up in our dev teams Slack channel) or Contact Us via email.  If using the forum, please start your own thread if you are sharing information about your site and want help debugging.  Include a link to your locator page and copy the content of your plugin environment (for WPSLP users) or profile (MySLP users).

Keep in mind that if you updated OTHER THINGS like WordPress, another plugin, or a theme… those can break Store Locator Plus.    SLP is the most visible thing you’ll see if your JavaScript breaks as the search form stops working.  Nobody usually notices a slide-out menu not sliding out but a search for locations is front-and-center.   Check your browser’s developer tools and look in the console for error messages.   We’ve had several sites update things like their them which was missing a library, such as Lightbox, that breaks JavaScript and stops the locator from running.

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My Store Locator Plus 17.8 Now Online

MySLP 17.8 went online today.  This update to the managed locator service brings improved browser performance to all sites.     Weebly, Squarespace, Bootstrap, and even WordPress sites using the managed service will all benefit.    The update sends a lot less data between the MySLP servers and the user’s browser both on the initial map startup and on subsequent data requests.   This means faster initial page loading times and less bandwidth.   For self-hosted websites less bandwith means faster server performance and lower hosting costs.

Speaking of Weebly, we’ve been playing with their service for the past week.   It is one of our new favorite “building block” style website editors out there.    It happens to play quite nicely with Store Locator Plus and implementing the embed code is super-easy.   You’ll see a lot more Weebly-based “How To” videos over the next few weeks as we tailor our South Carolina Ice Cream example site.    For those of you using WordPress plugins or other website building solutions you won’t be left out in the cold (ice cream pun intended).   Our examples apply to all of our Store Locator Plus solutions.

For those on the MySLP managed service you now have the improved site loading performance.  It will show up on your sites automatically.    No updates needed.    We have run our automated testing on all our active customer deployments and did not detect any failures.  If something does go awry please contact us.

In the 17.8 Release

Less data going to user’s browsers when interacting with the locator (All Levels).
Updated add/edit locations interface for Locations(All Levels).
Updated column show/hide and paging for Locations listing(All Levels).
Fix duplicates handling bug on CSV import (Power and higher).