Handling distributor sales and corporate sales in HS

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6 months 1 week ago #285647

-- HikaShop version -- : 3.2.2
-- Joomla version -- : 3.8.3
-- PHP version -- : 5.6.32

Some years back I made a post on this subject but I'd like to revisit it and see if some improvement is possible.

We as a company find increasingly that our customers and our users are two different people. The customer is the one who pays the order, and the user needs to take delivery of the software and serial number(s) (generated by HikaSerial). Right now only the customer has access to the order page so he has to actually download the software and deliver it to the user.

This creates nuisance issues in corporate sales where the accounts dept pay the order on their login and then they either give their login details to the end user or have to mess around downloading and sending software. Processes which they may not be so familiar.

For distributors it's the same but giving the end user their login is NOT and option. And they certainly don't want the end user seeing the distributor price ( and neither do we !!! ).

Right now what we do is ask that the end-user details are filled in in the shipping address so at least when we get an inquiry we know who is who. But this still doesn't solve the problem of software delivery.

Ideally we would like end-users to have their own login and HS User record. And then have the ability for the customer to create an end-user assigned to their order, or assign an existing end-user to the order. That way the end-user can log in and access software and serials making it much easier for us to distribute updates.

So that's my dream. Be interested to hear your comments and any suggestions on how to make HS closer to our actual sales model.

Conrad

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6 months 1 week ago #285648

Further to this: the current model in HS allows for partner sales but this is not the same thing as distributor sales. And there's an important legal difference between the two. Partners are agents who facilitate the your sales but the customer is still your customer. Distributors are your customer and they contract separately with their customer.

What I'm looking for is a way to make it easier for end-users to access the software and serials they have bought through the supply chain and integrate them into the database for the purpose of marketing and distribution of updates.

Right now I don't see a way to do this. But I would be so happy if there was :-)

Conrad

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6 months 6 days ago #285697

Hello,

In HikaShop there is already a "token" system which allow guest account to see their orders and download the product.
But that token is only authorized for guest orders, if it has been made with a Joomla account, that account must be logged and there is no kind of token authorization.
Modify the core to allow that would be too risky.

But HikaShop is very flexible. Highly flexible !
Thanks to a plugin you can create new controllers and provide new features, new views, new way of interaction.
For sure it would require some development but it is possible via a plugin to implement what you want to do ; have a new controller which can authorize the display of some orders with the right parameters and right "authentication" ; allow them to see the order and also download the related files.

Regards,


Jerome - Obsidev.com
HikaMarket & HikaSerial developer / HikaShop core dev team.

Also helping the HikaShop support team when having some time or couldn't sleep.
By the way, do not send me private message, use the "contact us" form instead.

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6 months 6 days ago #285698

Yes Jerome I know HikaShop is the best - that's why I use it. Another reason I use it is because the development team listen to us the customers!

The issue I'm trying to raise here is this. The end-user to whom we must deliver the software is not always the customer who makes the purchase. Since delivery of electronic products is built in to HikaShop this is an important matter for you, Nicolas. Not one to be dismissed with hand-waving towards plug-in development etc.

I'm pointing out a significant workflow problem. If you fix it you will be AWESOME as they like to say in America

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6 months 6 days ago #285713

A quick workaround for us would be to use HikaSerial. Our serial numbers are effectively tokens that could be used to validate download rights. Any pointers on how I could get that to work?

Conrad

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6 months 5 days ago #285705

Hi,

Well, regarding the serials, for which it makes sense to sometimes hand it over to someone else, HikaSerial already has a plugin so that you can enter an email address and that email address will get an email with the serial after the order.
But for product files, I don't see it as something useful to a lot of people. In fact you're the first one talking about it. I understand that you feel that this feature is a must have, but from what I see, it looks like a feature really specific to your needs and not a "significant workflow problem", and that's what triggers and custom plugins are there for.

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6 months 5 days ago #285767

Hi Nicolas,

Well the truth is there is always a first person to report any issue and I happen to be it. Working with distributors is the normal case for many companies - often it's the only way to break into markets where language and culture are different. And again the situation in large companies where the purchasing and use of software are done by two different departments is normal.

Hikashop like most e-commerce systems provides a mechanism for automated delivery of software products. What I am highlighting here is that your existing download management doesn't allow for delivery to the end-user when he is not also the purchaser. And, software delivery doesn't stop at the point where someone gets a download. New versions need to be distributed with suitable access control and logging of who downloaded what. Since these are always uploaded to HikaShop it makes sense for users to get their updates from there.

I'm raising this issue not to criticise but to help improve a component that has served me very well for many years. The reasons I continue to use Hikashop are the same: a reliable product with excellent support. I understand the implications of what I'm suggesting here. Maybe you will implement a solution, maybe not, that's your call.

Meanwhile I search for a workaround that will help my customers by simplifying the processes as much as possible.

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6 months 4 days ago #285771

Hi,

Thank you for your input.
I was just pointing out why I don't think we'll add it by default in HikaShop, at least for now. If more people manifest a need for it, we can always reconsider :)

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6 months 4 days ago #285818

I do appreciate that and in the same way that my customers feed their wishes and ideas to me, I'm doing the same for you.

For now I will have to do this externally but since I'll be relying on data from HikaShop and HikaSerial to implement product download using a unique serial number as a token I'll be relying on the stability of the interfaces that you provide. Leave it with me and I may be back for some advice on the correct hooks to use.

Thanks for listening

Conrad

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6 months 3 days ago #285822

Hello,

Our serial numbers are effectively tokens that could be used to validate download rights. Any pointers on how I could get that to work?


Serials are not meant to be used in such way in HikaSerial. There are some restriction regarding the consumption.
If you want to base your feature on the serial ; you have to not use the consumption feature since a serial can be consume just one time.

Regarding the download via serial consumption ; it's something already asked but should not be implement in HikaSerial due to the high number of side effects (still the fact that a serial can be consume one time).

But, we are working on a download feature for HikaSubscription. Because we can base the autorisation of the download on the subscription status.
The goal is to provide download related to the subscription and not the product itself. So as long as the subscription is active the customer can download the files ; while the HikaShop feature autorise the download for a fixed period of time (and also a numerous limitation).
Unfortunately, by default it won't be compatible with your requirements since it would still require the user to be log with the account (related to its subscription). Maybe we could see to add a trigger to help the implementation of extra features.
Since it's still under development it would be difficult to say.

I gave you my vision of such implementation and I still think it's the best way to do it.
It would be the way I do it if I had to.

Thanks to a plugin you can create new controllers and provide new features, new views, new way of interaction.
For sure it would require some development but it is possible via a plugin to implement what you want to do ; have a new controller which can authorize the display of some orders with the right parameters and right "authentication" ; allow them to see the order and also download the related files.


Regards,


Jerome - Obsidev.com
HikaMarket & HikaSerial developer / HikaShop core dev team.

Also helping the HikaShop support team when having some time or couldn't sleep.
By the way, do not send me private message, use the "contact us" form instead.

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4 months 1 week ago #289337

Just want to re-open this because I have a feeling there might be a way through and I'd like to check it with you. To save you re-reading the entire thread, here's the scenario:

My shop -- sells to --> distributor -- sells to --> end user

Distributor gives end user his serial number in return for payment.

The problem we face is that once paid, distributors are not very good at distributing product updates. All they have on their minds is the next sales commission. So rather than do battle with their humanity, I want to give the end user access to his downloads without that including order details and pricing etc. since that would mess things up with the distributor.

So, end user needs access to his serial numbers and his products downloads as a page in his account menu. Not supported in HS as things stand.

Well I've found a kludgey way around it. Table _hikaserial_serial has the order_product_id and that leads thru table _order_product to the file. So with a mega-JOIN in a custom SQL view I've got a nice table that links these things up, and I have a form that you can enter a serial and choose the file you want to download. So far so good - and a lot better than no solution.

On the way I saw that _hikaserial_serial also has a field containing the Joomla user ID of the person who assigned the serial to the order. And of course I'm wondering what happens if I change that. So I did of course! and I found that the front-end serials listing is not affected because you guys do it the right way. BUT, maybe this is a way to hand a serial over to another user???

Say I organised for the end user to consume the serial as a registered, logged in Joomla user, could I then change hikaserial_serial.serial_user_id to his Joomla user id? If so, then I can fix up a nice page that will list serials, products and file download links for the current logged in user.

What do you think of this approach? Will it be reasonably stable with respect to your plans?

Have a good weekend, and look forward to hearing from you.

Conrad

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4 months 5 days ago #289368

Hello,

Say I organised for the end user to consume the serial as a registered, logged in Joomla user, could I then change hikaserial_serial.serial_user_id to his Joomla user id?

No, that's not possible. The field must store the HikaShop user id and nothing else.

I don't understand your approach so I don't have a lot to say ; except that HikaShop have feature to give you who is the currently logged user.

Regards,


Jerome - Obsidev.com
HikaMarket & HikaSerial developer / HikaShop core dev team.

Also helping the HikaShop support team when having some time or couldn't sleep.
By the way, do not send me private message, use the "contact us" form instead.

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4 months 4 days ago #289505

Well I tried, but I think we have a serious problem with the lack of a common language. This shows in the docs for HikaSerial which really do seem a bit Google-translate. "edition" when you mean editing, "assignation" when you mean assignment and numerous grammar errors. There's a really nice and fairly inexpensive human-translation service called Gengo which I have used. Good quality translation really enhances your product....

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4 months 3 days ago #289506

Hello,

The documentation is written in English. The Google translation module is just for other languages.

Regards,


Jerome - Obsidev.com
HikaMarket & HikaSerial developer / HikaShop core dev team.

Also helping the HikaShop support team when having some time or couldn't sleep.
By the way, do not send me private message, use the "contact us" form instead.

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4 months 2 days ago #289665

I attach this page www.hikashop.com/support/documentation/1...e-in-hikaserial.html corrected for normal English grammar and usage. I am a native speaker of English but I am no chauvinist. In fact for the past 30 years I have lived outside of the UK and I speak 3 languages.

I'm offering you these observations because I see that your excellent product is spoiled by forcing users to decode badly-written misspelled and ungrammatical English documentation. Can I please urge you to get some professional help with this? It is such a shame to see you guys not realising your true potential.

File Attachment:

File Name: HikaSerial...page.pdf
File Size:111 KB


If you are worried about the cost, consider this: the better your documentation, the less time you will have to spend on the forum trying to explain it (in broken English again).

I've been using your products for years now. And I'm really happy with them, and with the amazing support from you. I am on your side. Please listen !

Conrad

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4 months 19 hours ago #289803

Hello,

Last year I rewrote a part of that "welcome" page with the main tutorial page but for an unknown reason, that page was not up-to-date in the website.

Regards,


Jerome - Obsidev.com
HikaMarket & HikaSerial developer / HikaShop core dev team.

Also helping the HikaShop support team when having some time or couldn't sleep.
By the way, do not send me private message, use the "contact us" form instead.

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