This feature was not working correctly on most of the styles in our Style Gallery. Earlier today the Style Gallery was updated to properly manage the CSS that works with this feature.
To re-download the style go to Store Locator Plus (Advanced Options for MySLP users) | Settings | View and select a different style than you are using now. Then re-select the style you are using to force a download of the latest settings and CSS styles.
Note: if you have modified ANY of the layout settings you will want to save those changes by copying them to a separate application such as a code editor or local text editor first so you can re-apply the changes if you re-download the style from our Style Gallery server.
Store Locator Plus updates are ready to roll out for May 2017. The updates will first come to the WordPress plugins. MySLP will be updated in the next 3-4 weeks pending testing. Here is what is coming in this series of updates.
Various updates have been made to allow the Style Gallery to better support additional user experience modifiers available in the Experience and Premier Add On packs. For example the base plugin now has a Search Form Styles selection that provides access to built-in jQuery styling that makes things like drop down menus and autocomplete features look a little nicer.
The Default style in the Style Gallery has been updated. You do not need to update the base plugin to take advantage of this update. If you are already using the Default style select a different style from the Settings / View tab in Store Locator Plus (start with Advaned Options in MySLP) and switch it back to Default to pull the new style from the Style Gallery server. If you have SLP 4.7.10 it will take advantage of some new HTML attributes to better style the search form layout, especially when dropping labels in front of some input fields on the locator. Continue reading “What’s Baking? Updates for SLP, Power, Experience, Premier”→
Version 4.7.9 of Store Locator Plus as well as the Experience, Premier, and Power add ons was released for WordPress today. The features and updates will roll out on the MySLP platform in the next 30-60 days after it passes full integration testing on the MySLP service.
The 4.7.9 update focuses on bringing the new Premier URL Control module functionality to the locator application. The URL Control module adds two new features to the Store Locator Plus application: passing in a location ID via a URL and passing in location limits via URL. These features can be enabled or disabled globally on a per-site basis.
Location ID via URL
With this feature enabled adding a ?location=<#> parameter to a URL will highlight that location. The location will be set as the center of the map and the marker will be clicked which will bring up the info bubble by default.
Limits via URL
With this feature enabled adding a ?limit=<#> parameter to a URL will set the initial map loading and search results limit on locations returned. Passing in ?location=<#>&limit=1 will highlight and only show that location on the map.
Premier members with an active subscription will be able to turn on the URL Control module which will load in the code necessary to add new Location ID and Limits via URL features.
Directory Builder Updates
The Power add on directory builder, invoked with the [slp_directory] shortcode on a page, has also had updates that work in conjunction with the new Premier URL Control module. You can now add a locator_data attribute to the shortcode to override the standard parameter passing when linking to a landing page. The default behavior is to link to the locator and filter results to match the given shortcode “by” attribute. For example [slp_directory by=”city” locator_page=”/map/”] would pass ?city=<city-name> to the map and show only locations in that city.
If you had one location in each city you could not pass [slp_directory by=”city” locator_page=”/map/” locator_data=”sl_id”] which would pass in the ?sl_id=<id> to the map. If the Location ID via URL feature is enabled this would allow people to see a list of cities and when clicking on a city bring up the map page highlighting that location on the map.
There have been a few minor patches as well as updates to the base Store Locator Plus plugin and Experience add on that ensures all the major components communication with each other properly on how to build the data queries properly when various parameters like location_id is passed in via a URL. Older legacy add ons will not have the necessary code updates and may conflict with the latest Power and Premier updates. Mixing-and-matching the Experience, Premier, or Power add ons with the legacy add ons is not recommended and is no longer supported.
Store Locator Plus, the base plugin for the locator application, includes a minor update that cleans up some basic CSS issues on the admin interface that showed up on a handful of WordPress themes. This version now uses minified CSS files for the admin pages, slightly reducing the network overhead and allowing WordPress enqueue to work more efficiently.
Store Locator Plus will be undergoing planned maintenance later today from 830AM until 12PM ET (GMT+5). The following services may be affected as follows:
All Store Locator Plus websites including the marketing sites, demo site, documentation sites, and upgrade servers will be offline for 10 minutes starting at 830AM.
WordPress Plugin Updates
Update service will be offline for 10 minutes starting at 830AM.
My Store Locator Plus
Maps will not be served for 10 minutes starting at 830AM. This is one of several updates necessary for a fault-tolerant system where we are aiming for 99.999% uptime for serving MySLP maps.
Dashboard login and the main marketing site will undergo several changes that may take them offline intermittently for up to 20 minutes at a time through 12PM EST. This should have very minimal, if any, impact serving maps to your application or website.
Version 4.7.7 of Store Locator Plus was released today. The primary reason for this release is to patch a plugin activation bug that caused some sites to crash during the update process. The bug was related to a case sensitivity issue that affected primarily Windows based servers. If you were seeing an error noting recalculate initial distance as the culprit, this patch should resolve that issue.
In addition the plugin load has been revised using the “Minimalist Loader” best practices. WordPress plugins can bolster overall performance of a website by including nothing more than the base plugin loader in the top-level directory for that plugin. That loader file should contain the header information WordPress needs to set the name and version of the plugin and an include that loads the main code from a subdirectory. The base Store Locator Plus plugin now follows this convention to reduce processing overhead across WordPress. The more plugins that take this approach the faster your site will be.
Prior to version 4.7.6 there were some extra options carried around with that request being sent from the user back to your server. After reviewing the code we determined that the extra options were not needed to properly handle the location lookup. We eliminated the extra data which reduced the size of that request to less than half the size it was in any 4.X version of Store Locator Plus.
While we expected a little less data I/O what we didn’t expect was for our performance tests to show notable changes to the time it takes to draw the first location in the results panel. Running a set of SiteSpeed.IO tests on a standard data set we are seeing regular improvements of 19-42% on various performance metrics.
RUM Speed Index 19% faster down from 2375 to 1985.
First Paint is 31% faster down from 775ms to 589ms.
Backend Time is 52% faster down from 216ms to 152ms.
We’re not sure how this will look in the “real world” but we like unexpected surprises like this! If your Store Locator Plus implementation “feels faster” with SLP 4.7.6, please share on our Twitter account @LocatorPlus. If it is slower our Twitter account is @TheOtherLocatorGuys.
Store Locator Plus is kicking off 2017 with a notable revision to the user experience tools available in the map and location finder application. Store Locator Plus for WordPress has long employed “Plugin Styles” as a way for users to jump-start their custom look-and-feel for the locator on their WordPress site. With the recent release of the My Store Locator Plus SaaS service it was obvious that a modern system for deploying updated styles was going to be needed.
Store Locator Plus 4.7.3 is replacing the static CSS-file based styling system with a cloud-hosted style gallery. This will allow the user experience team at Store Locator Plus to deploy new styles without having to wait for the R&D team to design and test a new version of the application before a new style is available to the users. Our design team can now assist all Store Locator Plus users that are having styling issues and provide them with a faster turn around for one-click fixes to their locator interface issues. Continue reading “A Better User Experience System Coming To Store Locator Plus”→
Mobile devices have made searching for places near where you are , with your phone, a popular service. You are out there in the real world and want to know what is near you at that very moment in time. A recent article we published shows the searches for restaurants using this technology is one of the most common searches in America.