An IndieCommerce Institute Preview, Plus News & Reminders

Printer-friendly versionPrinter-friendly version

IndieCommunication logoThe September 9 edition of the IndieCommunication newsletter includes a preview of topics for the 2017 IndieCommerce Institute, news about a change in the algorithm for computing the “sell price” of books, and more.

The 2017 IndieCommerce Institute

IndieCommerce Institute logoRegistration for the 2017 IndieCommerce Institute (ICI) will be opening November 1. The 2017 ICI will be in Minneapolis on Friday, January 27, the day before the start of Winter Institute 12. Here is a preview of the topics the institute will be offering:

Working With Images

  • Display and manipulate images
  • Create custom image styles
  • Use images in views, slideshows, and image galleries
  • Use tools like Lightbox and ImageCrop
  • ADA compatibility and best practices


  • Understand the menu structure and menu types
  • Create new menus and manage existing ones
  • Dropdown menus using Superfish, Suckerfish, Nice Menus
  • Responsive menus
  • Customize menus

Affiliate Program

  • Introduction to the affiliate program
  • Store vs. IndieBound affiliates
  • Reports, commissions, clicks, etc.


  • Introduction to rules and conditional actions
  • Basic concepts and configuration
  • Practical use-cases

Google Analytics (GA) and Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

  • Overview of GA and SEO
  • Drupal GA and SEO plug-ins available for IndieCommerce
  • GA and SEO best practices

Watch for more information in the weeks ahead.

Send questions and comments to

Tips & Tricks: Check Your Checkout

Tips graphic imageUnderstanding your customers’ online shopping experience is an extremely important part of maintaining your site. Keep in mind that IndieCommerce rolls out updated features and services all the time. What customers experience while placing an order now may be quite different from what you experienced the last time you placed a test order.

If you have not placed a test order on your site recently, you are encouraged to do so this week. Shop on your site and place a test order. Take a critical look at all of the pages you see during checkout, as well as the order confirmation e-mail that is generated. Read everything as if you were a customer. Is everything working as you would like?

A Change in the Algorithm for Computing the “Sell Price” of Books

Until now, “Web Discounts Override Inventory Pricing” was a global setting. If it was enabled, the override affected all ISBNs at once, applying the same adjustment to every product. With this change, the setting can now be enabled per each individual ISBN. The “Web Discounts Override Inventory Pricing” setting now follows these parameters:

  • If Web Discounts Override Inventory Pricing is unchecked, LSI prices will always be used (as they are now).
  • If Web Discounts Override Inventory Pricing is checked, pricing rules for books with a single product pricing rule will supersede LSI pricing.
  • If Web Discounts Override Inventory Pricing is checked, pricing rules by wholesaler discount code will still be ignored if the book is in the store’s LSI upload.

A bonus for store administrators: The new algorithm updates a “Price Source” field to each book listing (visible in the “Admin Details” on the page). This helps clarify where the price came from, whereas sources used to be unknown. Possible field values are:

  • List Price: No pricing rules were triggered.
  • Single Product Pricing Rule: A specific pricing rule for this ISBN exists.
  • Ingram Discount Code Pricing Rule: A pricing rule for this product’s Ingram Discount Code is in effect.
  • LSI: The price was specified in the store’s LSI file.

LSI prices less than or equal to 0 will be ignored.

Fraud Alert

Scam alert imageBeware of large phone and e-mail orders. A small bookseller on the East Coast recently received several very large telephone orders for textbooks. The credit card transactions were approved by their credit card processor. The orders were then shipped to what later turned out to be an empty house in West Virginia. The credit card numbers all turned out to be stolen and the merchant ended up having to cover the cost. The credit card processor claims no responsibility for the transactions even though they approved them prior to shipment.

If an e-mail or phone order is unusually large and you are not familiar with the customer, proceed with caution.

IndieCommerce One-on-Ones at Most Regional Shows

A representative from the IndieCommerce team will be attending most of the regional trade shows this fall. Check this page for shows that are currently accepting registration for one-on-one sessions; the page will be updated as registration opens for additional shows.

Questions? Send an e-mail to

Past editions of IndieCommunication are available here.