Icecat Release Notes 193: Enhancing User Experience and Platform Efficiency

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Release Notes

Welcome to Icecat Release Notes 193, where we unveil many exciting updates to elevate the user experience and optimize platform efficiency. In this iteration, our team has focused on implementing a range of enhancements across various facets of our platform, from performance optimizations to security enhancements and infrastructure upgrades. For additional details, please refer to the previous Icecat Release Notes.

In this release, our team has been working hard, refining and optimizing various aspects of Icecat.biz to deliver a seamless and intuitive user experience. From boosting performance to streamlining partner assignments and fortifying security measures, our goal remains steadfast: to provide our users with an efficient, reliable, and responsive platform to meet their needs.

Boosting Icecat.biz Performance

Our team has achieved a remarkable milestone in enhancing the user experience of our platform, Icecat.biz. The latest release has significant improvements to optimize product page load speed and enhance the user experience.

In sprint 193, a number of important adjustments were made, each aimed at streamlining operations and elevating performance. One of the key enhancements lies in the refinement of the model utilized for accessing product data. By enhancing this crucial part, we have improved how data retrieval processes are conducted, facilitating quicker page loads and enhancing overall responsiveness.

Furthermore, an effort was made to enhance the efficiency of token addition and caching procedures. This enhancement not only bolsters data retrieval reliability but also contributes to a more seamless browsing experience for our users. With optimized caching mechanisms in place, users can expect reduced latency and improved accessibility to product information.

As part of our ongoing commitment to improving the product page load speed, our team continued transitioning the product page to server-side rendering and developed the additional tabs within the product pages: “Reasons to Buy,” “Distributor,” “Video,” “3D,” and “Product Story.” Before the new product page on SSR is available to users, comprehensive autotests will be conducted to ensure seamless integration and flawless functionality.

Streamlining Partner Assignments

Our team has made significant strides in developing automation processes for channel partner assignments. In our latest sprint, we have achieved a remarkable milestone, bringing us closer to seamless partner management in our Product Information Management (PIM) system and enhancing user experiences on Icecat.biz.

Central to our efforts in this sprint was completing development and autotests for the new Reseller Request API. This API, equipped with GET, POST, and PATCH endpoints, serves as the base for the addition to our PIM system – the new “Authorization Requests” page. Explicitly designed for brand partners, this page empowers them with robust mechanisms for managing channel partner requests.

When a channel partner submits an authorization request via Icecat.biz, the request is sent to the designated brand partner. Now, our PIM system diligently records all requests, ensuring comprehensive oversight and accessibility for all brand partners assigned to the corresponding brand. Even if the initial brand partner designated in the authorization request email cannot process the request, our system ensures continuity by enabling other brand partners associated with the same brand to process the request through the PIM page.

Moreover, our team has successfully completed the backend development of logic that connects default brand user configurations, a milestone achieved in a previous sprint, with the channel partner who initiates the request. This integration streamlines processes, ensuring partner assignments align with brand user configurations.

Looking ahead, the upcoming sprint holds promise as we prepare to unveil the corresponding user interface for these developments. The new UI will mirror the user-friendly tools available in authorization request emails, enabling brand partners to accept or deny requests directly from the PIM page.

Optimizing Gallery Architecture

In a monumental stride towards enhancing performance and scalability, our team has successfully completed the normalization of the gallery architecture in our latest sprint. This transformation marks a significant reduction in storage space and creates a basis for future advancements in image processing.

Before normalization, the gallery table posed challenges regarding storage efficiency and data management. However, we have achieved remarkable results with the help of restructuration and normalization techniques. The gallery has been reorganized into multiple interconnected tables. This substantial optimization has significantly reduced storage requirements, with the space reduced by approximately 89%, while greatly enhancing database efficiency and query performance.

Throughout the sprint, our partners experienced the seamless integration of this architectural overhaul, particularly in the context of the large volume of daily index files. These files are linked with the gallery normalization release and image link updates. As a result, users of our gallery now enjoy improved speed and responsiveness.

This normalization effort serves as a key step towards realizing our development related to automated image cropping. By optimizing the architecture of our gallery, we are laying a robust foundation for future developments in image processing.

Enhancements to PIM Search Page

In our continuous quest for excellence, our team has diligently worked to incorporate user feedback and refine the functionality of our new PIM Search page. In the latest sprint, a series of enhancements have been introduced aimed at streamlining workflows and improving the user experience.

One of the key improvements centers around the Status column, a vital tool for our editors in mapping similar products. Responding to user feedback, we’ve implemented a time-saving feature that automatically populates the “Product code” field with the code of the current product. This simple yet effective enhancement eliminates the need for manual copy-and-paste operations, enabling our editors to work more efficiently and focus on higher-value tasks.

Another notable enhancement pertains to the Group action “Change product information: Feature.” When editors opt to modify product features, they are now prompted to select a category. This selection narrows the list of available Icecat features to those specifically relevant to the chosen category and its taxonomy. This targeted approach ensures accuracy and consistency in feature selection.

In addition to workflow optimizations, improvements have been made to the emails containing Group action reports. These emails now provide recipients with specific information regarding the executed group action, eliminating the need to open and download the email to understand its contents. Furthermore, to enhance accessibility and conserve inbox space, the report is now accessible via a temporary link. This approach minimizes clutter in recipients’ inboxes while ensuring easy access to the information.

By actively soliciting and incorporating user feedback, we strive to create a PIM Search page that meets and exceeds our users’ evolving needs.

Introducing Data Health Score Version 2

In our latest sprint, we have initiated an ambitious journey to enhance data management capabilities with the development of Data Health Score Version 2. This initiative is driven by our commitment to providing our users with greater flexibility and autonomy in managing data quality metrics without the need for constant developer intervention.

At the core of this development is the objective of creating a robust toolset that enables users to tailor Data Health scores according to their specific standards and requirements. By introducing a more flexible framework, we aim to empower our partners to define and prioritize data quality criteria that align with their unique business objectives.

Throughout this sprint, our focus has been laying the groundwork for this solution. We have completed essential development preparations, including structuring tables and models and creating a comprehensive Swagger schema for the new Data Health API. Furthermore, these foundational elements form the foundation for the enhanced Data Health Score system.

With Version 2 of the Data Health Score, users will gain access to a versatile toolkit that facilitates creating and customizing data quality metrics.

Other Improvements in Icecat Release Notes 193:

1. Revamped Delta Report Delivers Context-Rich Insights

One of the standout achievements in this sprint is enhancing our weekly delta report, a vital tool for notifying our editor’s QA about incorrectly set language in description blocks. The revamped report now features additional columns showcasing category, brand, and product editor names. Moreover, this enriches the review process by providing necessary context, facilitating decision-making, streamlining workflows, and enhancing efficiency.

2. Fortifying Security

A new IP limitations feature has been introduced for the “Allowed IP addresses” field to bolster security measures. This enhancement prevents channel partners from adding unlimited IP addresses and their ranges. Now, the field strictly adheres to the /24 method and limits the addition of subnets to a maximum of four, mitigating the risk of unauthorized access and ensuring robust data protection measures.

3. Elevating Sustainability

Significant strides have been made in addressing technical debt, ensuring our platform’s long-term sustainability and scalability. Key initiatives include the implementation of Capped Collections in MongoDB for the data import process and optimizing database storage without the need for constant expansion or cleanup. Moreover, product matching has been migrated from Mounted storage to S3 storage, enhancing data accessibility and resilience.

4. Strengthening Infrastructure

Furthermore, upgrades to the Amazon S3 module and restoration of the MySQL Slave Server underscore our commitment to maintaining a robust and reliable infrastructure capable of supporting our platform’s growing demands and ensuring uninterrupted service for our users.

Icecat Release Notes 193 marks another significant step forward in our ongoing mission to deliver the best product information platform. With enhancements ranging from performance optimizations to security upgrades and infrastructure enhancements, we remain committed to providing our users with a seamless and intuitive experience. We look forward to delivering even more value and functionality in future releases as we continue to innovate and evolve.

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