Offering extra packages at checkout

Applies to: IOS


Overview

The ability to offer packages as optional 'Extras' was an inaugral feature of Timestone Software's Internet Ordering System. One or more packages could be defined as an 'Extra' meaning the packages appeared at the bottom of the list of products and could only be ordered if the customer had already placed at least one of the 'regular' products into the cart.

While very popular, the method lacked flexibility in the sense that an extra package could be ordered if any of the regular packages had been added to the cart. It was not possible to link an extra package to specific regular packages. For example it was not possible to ....

"I want to offer Package X only if they order Package A and I want to offer Package Y only if they order either Package B, C or D and I want to offer Package Z as an extra if they order anything at all".

A major upgrade to IOS in 2015 added such flexibility.

Key points

  • Packages can be offered as extras to one or more specfic packages or to every package
  • When offered as an extra, the extra package can be offered at different prices depending which regular package has been ordered
  • Extra packages are not shown with regular packages in the main part of the website. They are offered to the customer at checkout
  • Text used to offer the extra packages to customers is customizable on a job by job basis

Defining package extras

Package extras are defined in the Filters/Extras tab of an Offer. This tab is essentially divided into two panels.

  1. The upper panel lists all the Offer's packages and let's the user set a number of options - notably whether to offer the package as an extra
  2. The lower panel lists the packages again with the exception of the package currently selected from the panel above.

The upper panel

The upper panel lists all the Offer's packages and allows the user to set a number of options or 'Limits' for the package such as availablity, limit tags and whether or not to allow pack items to be offered as options. (See Limiting packages to particular folders and Offering items as options in IOS )


Figure 1: Setting a package as an extra

Amongst the limits is the option to 'Offer as extra'. Checking this option means the package will only be offered as an extra - it will not be available for ordering as a regular package.

Once a package is selected from the upper panel it is then possible to use the lower panel to select with which package or packages it will be offered as an extra for and at what price.

The lower panel

The lower panel again lists all the packages with the exception of the package currently selected in the panel above. It allows the user to select one or more packages and set the price at which the extra package (selected in the upper panel) will be offered at.

The package selected in the upper panel will be offered as an extra to any packages selected in the lower panel. It will be offered at a price set in the lower panel.

The procedure for defining a package as an extra can therefore be summarized as:

  1. From the upper panel select the package to be offered as an Extra. Double-click the filter window
  2. Check the 'Offered as extra' filter
  3. With the package selected in the upper panel, select one or more packages from the lower panel and set the price as desired. This will make the package selected from the upper panel available as an extra for these packages
  4. Repeat for any other packages which are to be offered as extras

Figure 2: Setting packages as extras

The screen grab above shows a side by side comparison of two packages in the same offer. It can be seen that package PK8 (left screen grab) is offered as an extra to packages PK2 through to PK7 (at a price of 9.99) whereas package PK9 (right screen grab) is offered as an extra to package PK1 only at a price of 5.99

In the example above if the customer orders any of the packages PK2 through to PK7 they will be offered package PK8 at a price of 9.99. However if the customer orders package Pk1 they will be offered package PK9 at a price of 5.99

Customising the text

The text displayed in the cart with extra packages is customisable on a job per job basis through tsIOS when uploading or refreshing jobs. Simply enter custom text in the 'Extras text' object of tsIOS as shown in the screen grab below.


Figure 3: Customising the text

Examples

The link below shows an example of using package extras as described above.

http://demo.timestone.com.au/login_shoot?shoot_key=FTTG8MTZ

Add anything to the cart then view the cart. Note regardless of what is ordered the Personalised Calendar is offered. "I want to offer Package Z as an extra no matter what they order"

Clear the cart then order the Deluxe Package. View the cart and note with the Deluxe Package the customer is offered a discounted set of bookmarks."I want to offer Package X only if they order Package A"

Clear the cart then order something other than the Deluxe Package. View the cart and note the customer is not offered the bookmarks but is offered a Digital Download. "I want to offer Package Y if they order either Package B, C or D but not A"

Clear the cart and order the Deluxe Package as well as any other package. View the cart and note all extras are offered

Limitations of package extras

Extra packages have the following limitations when compared to regular packages.

  • Extra packages always use the same image as the one used to order the regular package
  • It is not possible to offer options to extra packages

Safety measures to avoid abuse

The system will automatically handles situatons where the customer tries to "trick" the system. For example if the customer, after adding a regular package to the cart, then adds an extra package but subsequently removes the regular package, the extra package is also removed.

The same extra package at different prices

If a package is offered as an extra for two (or more) different regular packages but at different prices and the customer orders both the regular packages, the extra package will be offered at the lower of the two prices.

See it yourself

Packages as extras are shown on the Timestone Software demo site - http://demo.timestone.com.au with the shoot key FTTG8MTZ

With this offer...

  • A digital download package is offered as an extra for all packages other than the Deluxe Package (since the Deluxe Package already contains the digital image)
  • A set of bookmarks is offered as an extra only if either the 'Deluxe', 'Traditional' or 'Budget' packages are ordered
  • A calendar is offered as an extra only if any of the packages are ordered

End of article