While the tradition in Central and Northern Europe to dance into May cannot be realized again this year, there is at least something to celebrate for all ASA2 users today: the maybe biggest update ever is here!
Support for other shops
The biggest feature of the new version is the new Shops section. This allows to create other shops besides Amazon and connect them with products.
The video gives a good overview of the new features:
The products you have used so far will be automatically assigned to the default store “Amazon” after the update. If you don’t want to use other shops, nothing changes for you. If you don’t want to work with Amazon at all, that is also possible now.
For the start, the products of other shops must still be created manually. As soon as the new mechanics are established, the support of shop APIs as well as import and synchronization with XML/CSV files will follow with further updates.
For more information on the new Shops feature, see the Shops section of the online documentation.
New default template “Robust”
The new managed template “Robust” was created with the new Shops feature in mind. It is optimized to display the respective shop logo and has a compact layout that works well on all devices. For new installations it is set as the default template, for updates the default template is of course not changed.
Check out the Robust demo page.
As you can see on the screenshot, there is a new field for products called “More Info URL“. This can be used to implement another button in the template, which e.g. refers to a separate article and thus makes the product box appear more individual. You can find more about this in the online documentation.
Amazon products without PA API
With the new version it is possible to create Amazon products without PA API connection. This is useful, for example, for all those who are still waiting for activation for the PA API and still want to fill their page with Amazon affiliate links. The work is not in vain, because ASA2 can synchronize the products via API afterwards, if the activation is completed.
The video explains how to create Amazon products without PA API:
For more details, see the online documentation in the “Create an Amazon Product without API” section.
PA API Support for Poland and Sweden
Support for Poland and Sweden has been integrated for Amazon PA API.
“Repo” is now called “Products”
The former “Repo” section is now called “Products”, because there were always difficulties in understanding (Repo was meant as an abbreviation of Repository). With the new features, “Products” fits much better and everyone knows what is meant. In some parts, e.g. template placeholders, there are still references to the old name.
Many improvements on cronjobs
Configuring server-side cronjobs is not easy. Yet they are important when using the PA API to prevent long loading times for visitors.
Since it is unfortunately not possible with many web hosts to execute cronjobs server-side and instead only the execution via URL is allowed, there is now a solution for this. All ASA2 cronjobs are now usable via URL. You can read more about this in the online documentation in the section “Cron REST API“.
WP Cron API
The configuration of cronjobs via WP Cron API has also been simplified. All cronjobs can now be configured in the same way using the new PHP wrapper. See chapter “WP Cron API” in the online doc for more details.
Still the server-side execution is recommended, because it is the most performant and effective, see chapter “Server-side“.
New cronjob to preload the keywords shortcode
When using the keywords search, there was previously no way to load the result of the API request in advance, in order to thereby not impact the loading speed of the page. This is now possible with the new keywords cronjob. You can find all the details in the online documentation in the chapter “Keywords“.
Update of nearly all templates
In the course of the new shops feature, almost all managed templates were revised to display the new store logos and button texts. Many templates were also revised in terms of layout and bugs were fixed.
Complete list of all changes
As always, you can find a complete list of all new features and changes in the changelog. Many issues are linked with the related pages in the online documentation.
Special thanks to the supporters and testers
With this update I would like to say a special thank you to all testers and supporters. Without your ideas and the willingness to use the many test releases in the course of the last months already productively, ASA2 would not be what it is. I appreciate your efforts very much!
As always, I’m happy to receive any kind of feedback about the new version. Please use the comments or the support form.