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Forums / Ecommerce / Ecommerce Product Creation - Multiple Attributes in One Variation?

Ecommerce Product Creation - Multiple Attributes in One Variation?

21 posts, 3 answered
  1. James
    James avatar
    15 posts
    Registered:
    02 Apr 2012
    09 Aug 2012
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    I have thousands of products in my current project that require multiple attributes per variation. I was surprised to find out that I can only create one attribute per variation with the built-in tools for sitefinity.

    For Example: If I sell a single shirt, size, color, and type(long/short) should all be attributes for that individual shirt. Sitefinity only allows for (size) OR (color) OR (type). A customer may want a shirt that is blue and small and a shirt that is green and large, in those cases I would need two attributes per variation.

    Did I explain that well enough? Does anyone know if there is a work around for this issue or if Telerik is going to build this in to the updates?

    It seems to me that this feature would be useful in most ecommerce situations. I can have only one drop down for each variation, thats no good. I need 3 or 4 in some cases. I would think it would be easy to allow CMS users to add or remove as many attributes to any variation as they want. The concept is the same it just allows CMS users to add and remove attributes per variation.

    If anyone could help me with a solution to this problem I would absolutely appreciate it.

    Currently, the only thing I can do now is have a seperate product entry for every variation out there. Product one would be blue shirt that is small. Product two would be red shirt that is large. This creates a ton extra work but I think I have to do that.

    Let me know if anyone could help with suggestions.

    Thanks,
    James
    Answered
  2. Randy Hodge
    Randy Hodge avatar
    96 posts
    Registered:
    03 Nov 2014
    14 Aug 2012
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    Hi James,

    Your products can have as many different Attributes as you'd like. Product Variations are the list of all the Attributes that you have assigned to them.

    First you create the Attributes that you will need. These are not tied directly to a product but part of a "pool" of Attributes that can be assigned to whichever product you would like. After creating an Attribute, you create Values that go with it. For example: Create a Color attribute, then create all the color Values you want (Black, Blue, Red, etc.).

    Then you edit a Product's Variations and add whichever attributes and their values that you want for that product. So you can assign Color:Black, Color:Blue, Size:Large, Size:Small to a product's variations and when the customer views that product's details, there will be two drop down lists - one for Color and one for Size. The customer can choose any combination of size and color that you have provided.

    You can read about this in much greater detail in our Ecommerce documentation under Creating product attributes and Creating and editing product variations.

    I have also prepared a short video that shows the entire process of creating a Color attribute with four colors and a Size attribute with three sizes and assigning all of them to a single product.

    Regards,
    Randy Hodge
    the Telerik team
    Do you want to have your say in the Sitefinity development roadmap? Do you want to know when a feature you requested is added or when a bug fixed? Explore the Telerik Public Issue Tracking system and vote to affect the priority of the items
  3. James
    James avatar
    15 posts
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    02 Apr 2012
    14 Aug 2012
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    Randy,

    You are a great help. I see what you did there in the video (thank you for taking your time to make that by the way), I guess I never tested it in the published site to see that both options were there.

    The UI leads me to believe that the "red color variation" was a product (item#) that only had the attribute color with a value red. From your demonstration, it looks like it is applying all attribute options to any variation. My initial thought was that each attribute entered under variation was in fact a final variation.

    I will have to play with this because I am still not sure how I will identify what selections were made when they add the item to the cart. It doesn't look like it allows for a SKU per variation, just a SKU per attribute and per listing.

    Randy thank you for opening my eyes to this. I will play with this feature today and get back to you when I am done.

    Thank you again so much for your help!

    James
  4. Ian
    Ian avatar
    6 posts
    Registered:
    28 Jan 2013
    28 Jan 2013 in reply to Randy Hodge
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    Hi Randi,

    I’ve read this with
    interest and watched your video; unfortunately whilst it provides a solution of
    sorts it doesn’t really provide a proper solution.

    How or where; for
    example; do I enter the SKU for a product that is size ‘large’ and colour ‘red’?

    Also how do I stop
    folk selecting colour size combinations that are not available?

     

    The only satisfactory solution
    is to enable the creation of variants with multiple attributes
  5. Nick
    Nick avatar
    113 posts
    Registered:
    21 Oct 2008
    28 Jan 2013 in reply to Ian
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    The inability to create variants with multiple RELATED attributes is still sorely lacking in Sitefinity Ecommerce. 

    The inbuilt inventory tracking completely fails for variants too. It's no good saying that Red is out of stock, it needs to know that Red+Small is OUT of stock, but Red+Large is IN stock. It can't do this, because the attributes are not connected.

    From what we can tell, if a project requires anything more than basic (single attribute) variants, then Sitefinity is not the tool for the job. 
  6. Randy Hodge
    Randy Hodge avatar
    96 posts
    Registered:
    03 Nov 2014
    29 Jan 2013
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    Hello Ian,

    I have answered you in the support ticket you submitted. I will post it here as well:

    There are no separate SKUs for variation combinations. Each variation has a place to enter a SKU and these get appended to the product SKU. So if you have T-shirts and the SKU is TSHT005, and a red variation that has a SKU of 003 and a small variation with a SKU of SM, that t-shirt would have a SKU of TSHT005|003|SM.

    Currently, the eCommerce module does not support product variation dependencies. I have spoken to the eCommerce team and this is high on their priority list and will be in a future release. There is a logged feature request for this in PITS where you can vote to increase it's priority.

    Two possible workarounds:
    1. Create a single variation that includes only the valid variations - Red_Small, Red_Med, Blue_Large, etc.
    2. Use the new Pre-Processing hook as shown here. Here you could write code to check for valid combinations and reject invalid ones as out of stock.

    Regards,
    Randy Hodge
    the Telerik team
    Do you want to have your say in the Sitefinity development roadmap? Do you want to know when a feature you requested is added or when a bug fixed? Explore the Telerik Public Issue Tracking system and vote to affect the priority of the items
  7. Nick
    Nick avatar
    113 posts
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    21 Oct 2008
    30 Jan 2013 in reply to Randy Hodge
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    "this is high on their priority list and will be in a future release" - surely things low on their priority list will also be "in a future release"? Any chance of something less vague? 

    I see 5.4 is released next month, and the ecommerce enhancements include "Wish Lists" - were these REALLY a higher priority than practical, workable variants?
  8. James
    James avatar
    15 posts
    Registered:
    02 Apr 2012
    30 Jan 2013
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    Hey guys,

    I am glad to see we have a bit more chatter about this topic. I have yet to fully dive into this portion of the project that I spoke about originally and am still holdin out for a solution in the coming updates. I have been mainly focusing on a robust tag system in the backend for all products, in hopes that I can manipulate those tags on product display through backend code. I will keep everyone updated if I find a good solution to the attribute issue with each variation.

    Keep truckin forward guys!

    James

  9. Ian
    Ian avatar
    6 posts
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    28 Jan 2013
    05 Feb 2013
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    Hi James,

    I just went to PITS for this issue:
    http://www.telerik.com/support/pits.aspx#/details/Issue=13854
     
    and found it only had 9 votes and is way down the list, so I voted and the vote count went to 10 and then a few seconds later back to 9. So don’t hold your breath!


    Ian
  10. Christian
    Christian avatar
    23 posts
    Registered:
    31 Jul 2008
    24 Mar 2013
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    This is an essential feature. Please vote for it!
  11. James
    James avatar
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    02 Apr 2012
    23 May 2013
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    Thank you Ian, for the PITS link. I have commented on the pits issue and included a link back to this forum post. I have not upgraded my project to 6.0 yet but I do not think any progress has been made on this addition.

    I am getting closer to publishing a very large ecommerce site that would benefit greatly from dependent attributes per variation.  On product import I am having to choose from giving my customers the option to buy attribute combinations that don't exist or attribute combinations that are hard to read with multiple attributes piled in one.

    I can do product options that look like this "COLOR/SIZE/TYPE/STYLE" all in one attribute but I find this confusing. As of now that is my only solution, as I do not want options out there that are not in stock or don't exist.

    Personally, my company and I are willing to put some money down, if that is what it takes to get this addition to the ecommerce module. I believe it is very important.

    Thanks,
    James
  12. James
    James avatar
    15 posts
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    02 Apr 2012
    23 May 2013
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    By the way,

    If you have yet to look at Ian's snapshot attachment he posted on Jan 28. Please do! That is a perfect rough example of what is needed. Maybe a plus or minus button would work well there. Add as many attributes as the CMS user wants.

    James
  13. Patrick Dunn
    Patrick Dunn avatar
    237 posts
    Registered:
    03 Nov 2014
    24 May 2013
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    Hi James,

     Ecommerce in 6.0 has made many advances including workflow, multi-site, better out of the box shipping providers, etc. However the attributes remained the same for now. You can have multiple attributes with mutiple values per product but there is still no inventory or sku system for managing the different between shirt > large > red and shirt > small > black.

    We are working constantly to improve the system so thank you for voting on this feature.

    Regards,
    Patrick Dunn
    Telerik
    Do you want to have your say in the Sitefinity development roadmap? Do you want to know when a feature you requested is added or when a bug fixed? Explore the Telerik Public Issue Tracking system and vote to affect the priority of the items
  14. Ian
    Ian avatar
    6 posts
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    28 Jan 2013
    08 Jul 2013
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    Hi James (and everyone else that has contributed to this)

    We launched our site last week, you are welcome to have a look
    http://www.foremostgolf.com

    We are still running version 5.2.

    I heard a  that a new release is in the pipeline that allows you to manage stock at variant level, does anyone know anything about this? 

    Ian
  15. James
    James avatar
    15 posts
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    02 Apr 2012
    09 Jul 2013
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    Hey guys!

    First off, Ian, the site looks great man. Looks sharp and feels sharp. The few products, I dove into, seemed to only have one attribute on the details portion of the productList widget. I would be interested to know how you handled a product with multiple dependent attributes per variation on 5.2. 

    The good news for everyone on this particular thread is: Sitefinity 6.1 looks like it will be handling multiple dependent attributes per variation. Thank you Telerik for hearing our cries!

    If anyone is interested: http://www.sitefinity.com/developer-network/forums/sitefinity-preview/internal-builds/sitefinity-beta-6.1-available-for-download

    THANK YOU ALL!
    James
  16. Ian
    Ian avatar
    6 posts
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    28 Jan 2013
    09 Jul 2013
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    Hi James,

    Great news 

    We created a new product for every color attribute of a product and then had the sizes as the attributes. We have ended up with far more products than would otherwise have been required. 

    Thanks

    Ian
  17. Ian
    Ian avatar
    6 posts
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    28 Jan 2013
    09 Jul 2013
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    Hi James,

    I tried to answer your question but every time I tried to post my reply, It came back
     - Invalid post content -

    So I've attached it as an image

    Ian
  18. Ian
    Ian avatar
    6 posts
    Registered:
    28 Jan 2013
    09 Jul 2013
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    Hi James,

    see attached image

    Ian
  19. James
    James avatar
    15 posts
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    02 Apr 2012
    15 Jul 2013
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    Hello Everyone!

    I still don't know the official release date on 6.1... I believe the very much appreciated beta tester(s) are still testing. The API looks good. I am still going through some of the documentation here: http://www.sitefinity.com/docs/default-source/preview-forums-pdfs/e-commerce6-1--documentation-docx.pdf?sfvrsn=2

    Ian, I don't think the reply button liked you too much on your last couple posts. I don't see an image on either post. Thanks for the effort though! HaHa

    Thanks,
    James
    Answered
  20. James B.
    James B. avatar
    24 posts
    Registered:
    17 Jan 2011
    03 Oct 2013
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    I read this topic prior to getting into ecommerce, and now have a new perspective on it after trying to setup products with three dropdowns. I'm on 6.1. Apparently now all attributes are Dependent, so you have to enter variations for every possible combination in order for the values to be selectable in the dropdown. The dropdown's disable if a variation isn't created. Watching the jing video from Randy Hodge shows the old way to add them - which is how I was envisioning this. Now there's a generate variation link if you don't have any created for a product, which will create every variation combination for the attributes set to the product's product_type. Then you have to go in and edit all of say size Medium if the price, image or sku is variable. Since I don't track sku or inventory, I prefer the old way as one of my products has 147 variations and I have to either edit all the Small and Large to add the price diff, or script it out. My client is going to hate it when they change prices on a size. Since this generate link creates every combo for the attribute, which is based on product_type, I will have to 1) create a product type for every product, 2) create Size attributes per product since I want different values available per product. OR have one generic Size attribute, click the generate link, and go in and delete the ones I don't want.

    This product creation seems so unintuitive to me. It would be so much easier to be able to create attributes on a product level for me since my product's values aren't consistent. Or would be nice to make attributes independent so we could just set up the product's variations once: Small, Med, Large, Blue, Red, Green vs. Small Blue, Small Red, Small Green, Med Blue, Med Red, Med Green, Large Blue, Large Red, Large Green etc. Add another attribute and I'm ready to shoot myself. Is this really the best setup?
  21. James
    James avatar
    15 posts
    Registered:
    02 Apr 2012
    29 Oct 2013 in reply to James B.
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    James B.

    You and I have very different approaches to this variation creation setup. I am currently pretty happy with how the attributes are working. It is almost perfect for my setup. I am able to load thousands of products almost flawlessly programmatically, including their variations.

    See what I am doing is integrating Sitefinity with a external Item Master programmatically. Which most of my variation dependencies are already stored. I am able to load all the attributes and items as they exist directly from my external database via the fluent API. This allows me to maintain proper inventory programmatically on a scheduled basis (also order entry, ERP integration)

    I believe you are mainly using the GUI to create and modify products. I am not too familiar with how the generate variations button works but I will say this, in my opinion dependent attributes (the current release) are/is very important in most ecommerce solutions.

    I wish you the best of luck with your installation man. I wish I could help more.

    Thanks,
    James
    Answered
21 posts, 3 answered