5 Things You’re Going to Love in Kentico 11

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Everyone loves looking at their phone and seeing an app update waiting for them. Maybe it’s a new feature or capability, or just a slick new UI, and that magic little icon is your ticket to the goods. Regardless of the industry or platform, it’s exciting to see what companies have baked into their new releases, and to start planning how you can use them. In this article, I’m going to dive into some awesome things coming for developers in Kentico 11.

304 votes - Add Support for HTML 5 input types

158 votes – Enhanced smartsearch filter, with resultcount per filter

92 votes – Visual e-mail builder for marketers

Those are 3 of the top features requested on ideas.kentico.com. Sound great, don’t they? You know what’s even cooler though? Kentico 11 has them all!

With the release of the newset version later this year, Kentico 11 is going to bring some pretty awesome capabilities to the platform. Catering to both business and technical crowds, Version 11 will help companies streamline their projects and simplify their development. And the best part is how many of the features were voted on by YOU! We used your votes in our research when planning the roadmap and think we have comprised some amazing updates to the product.

Let me tell you about 5 things I think developers are going to love about Kentico 11.

Easier Ecommerce

Easier ecommerce

Every ecommerce project is different. From varying pricing rules to baffling processes, it seems every company in the world has a different way they sell their product and collect payment. Up to now, developers have had to put in a lot of custom work to accommodate these requirements, which meant a lot of custom classes, providers, and screaming at the monitor (or maybe that’s just me). Well, in Version 11 your life is going to get a lot easier!

Shopping cart calculation updates

Calculating prices is a difficult task. Because of how and when taxes are applied (or not) can have drastic effects on the overall cart experience. Add to that rounding processes and discounts, and there is a lot that can go awry when developing an ecommerce site. Kentico 11 is going to solve a lot of these headaches by introducing a completely revamped cart calculation engine. This new feature will resolve all your rounding and calculation troubles by breaking down the process into logical steps. If the out-of-the-box functionality still doesn’t meet your needs, you will be able to override any step of the process to ensure your store functions exactly how you need it. 

Delayed payment capture

Another often requested ecommerce feature is the ability to take an order, but collect payment later. This is often due to local and state regulations and can have a big impact on how a store operates in a region. Kentico 11 will allow you to configure your sites to configure your site for delayed payment capture using standard gateways or Paypal, with no customization required.

What this means for developers:

  • Accurate, reliable price calculation
  • Customizable calculation process
  • Increased functionality for less custom code

More integrations

2017 saw a huge increase in interest in the Kentico Technology Partnership Program, with several companies wanting to work with us to implement their solutions. These integrations allow us to provide some great functionality with the platform, implemented by technical experts. In Kentico 11, we’re expanding our ecommerce and marketing capabilities through the program, bringing you some powerful capabilities.

UCommerce

One of the biggest additions to the TPP is our UCommerce integration. Building on top of a rock-solid Kentico foundation, this integration will provide some awesome functionality to anyone looking to create an ecommerce store with the platform. This includes expanded product management, refunds, and a new API to leverage within your projects. This means you will be able to use these new features directly within your Kentico projects, in a streamlined user interface.

Salesforce CRM

Combining sales and marketing is essential for any company looking to capitalize on their communication and revenue generation. Kentico 11 will bring a new Salesforce CRM integration to help companies connect these two systems. By leveraging information in both platforms, users can get a holistic view of the site and ensure they are connecting with their audience effectively and understanding their customers’ journeys.

What this means for developers:

  • Less custom code to integrate into 3rd party systems
  • Proven, enterprise level functionality out of the box
  • More capabilities, less headaches

Search made simple

Search

When we introduced Smart Search years ago, it was a big deal. Up until then, all indexing of a site was done in the database. This resulted in a hefty performance hit on the system and only so-so results. With Smart Search, we leveraged the power of Lucene.NET to return much more accurate results in a fraction of the time.

In Version 11, we are taking Search a huge leap forward with the support of Azure Search indexes. This cloud-based service offers tons of new capabilities, including Faceted Search, Highlighting, Scoring Profiles, and much more. This means developing your site search will be much easier as you can leverage the capabilities of Azure throughout the process.  You will be able to integrate your existing site content into Azure Search and provide amazing search experiences for your users.

What this means for developers:

  • Faster, smarter search
  • Faceting and highlighting
  • Easy to customize search experience

Marketing Tools

Developers and Marketers are often two clans staring (maybe yelling) at each other from across the water. Marketers want features. Developers want clean code. When it comes to accommodating every request, there’s often a lot of custom development involved, and compromising on missing functionality.

In Kentico 11, we’re making some big changes to help bridge this standoff by implementing some exciting new features for the Marketing community. The new Email Builder has been completely redesigned and now allows for drag-and-drop creation of newsletters and campaigns. In addition, we’ve included an in-browser preview view for desktop and mobile devices. Yes, long are the days of a developer making a template, then updating a hundred times with small graphical changes.

We’ve also included some new Marketing toolset features, to help business users understand their data. With new insights into campaigns and newsletters, contact touch points, and persona history, marketers will better understand how they’re reaching their customers. This means that developers will spend less time creating custom reports and modules, while increasing the effectiveness of the platform.

What this means for developers:

  • Less custom code
  • Less technical requirement to design emails
  • More testing capabilities

Smarter Online Marketing

Marketing

All the best data collection and functionality means nothing if no one can see it. Often, developers are left with creating custom reports and utilities to bend and shape the data to meet their organization’s needs. In Kentico 11, we’ve added a slew of new reports and tracking capabilities to help ease this burden.

By leveraging the new Google Analytics Ecommerce tracking, developers will be able to create some awesome new reports for their marketing team. These reports will be a great boost sales and marketing looking to understand site traffic. With this new tracking, developers will be able to write less custom tracking snippets and modules, and get back to making cool new Doom screensavers.

What this means for developers:

  • Less custom reports
  • More tracking data to analyze / customize
  • Unified, consistent reporting of data

Here comes Kentico 11

As this blog shows, there’s a lot more packed into Kentico 11 than a few new web parts and features. With the core ecommerce enhancements, companies will spend less time customizing their ecommerce processes. The Email Builder and Toolset improvements will keep Marketers busy for days, freeing up your development resources to work on other things. And our new integrations just may help you bridge a technical gap you’ve had to work around in the past. Kentico 11 is going to be a pretty awesome release, because YOU made it that way. We hope you love it!

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Bryan Soltis

Hello. I am a Technical Evangelist here at Kentico and will be helping the technical community by providing guidance and best practices for all areas of the product. I might also do some karaoke. We'll see how the night goes...