WooCommerce bulk pricing for fonts plugin.

I’m still trying to find the best way to handle bulk discounts for font sales in WooCommerce. I’m taking about the (quantity price = (base price * multiple) style pricing that most type vendors use. I may hire a developer to add support to an existing, and probably open-source, plugin. If I do is anybody else interested? 

Comments

  • Is this solely for desktop/seat licenses or do you want to develop a more complex licensing mechanism? I'd be totally in for participating on something that's more complete or has a vision of including multiple license types.
  • I want to go beyond desktop licenses. I want to do something that covers—at a minimum—desktop, web, ebook, and app licenses with as few products/variations as possible. Mostly I want to limit the number of variations because they will make a store unmanageable. Even with bulk data editing plugins something will inevitably go wrong and not be noticed in a store with thousands of products/variations. I think each font should only be one product/variation to handle files differ and so the receipt will display what was purchased.

    Exactly how to do this is up for discussion. Desktop licenses can easily be handled with a standard quantity field. App and ebook licenses might require a dropdown with quantities or options, but I would still prefer to do that without variations.
  • I did some thinking on this and believe it can be accomplished by setting up a generic product for each of those add-on license types requiring a personalization field that could be propogated with the font name via js from the font page. For web fonts, since we have to deliver a web font kit, we'd still have to set that product up separately vs the complexity required to generate this on-the-fly.
  • Came across this thread while searching for something else entirely... Did you ever end up anywhere with this?

    For my own purposes I am currently developing a custom WooCommerce product type plugin for exactly this type of application, i.e. typefaces with licence and corresponding pricing options, which I internally want to treat as "just one product" in the catalog.
  • @Johannes Neumeier I'd love to see what you come up with, we haven't had any time to devote to this development but it would definitely be welcomed and you've got a buyer right here if it gets going!
  • @Rob Keller might have an idea for a nice work-around.
  • Would be curious to hear how other people have tackled this. My basic problem with WooCommerce was that I didn't find a way to dynamically generate differently priced products that share everything else (i.e. files, descriptions, why not even SKU's). Things like Product Variations are terribly unmanageable, unless there's something I am missing?

    So far I've created a Custom WooCommerce "typeface" product type as plugin. With it you can define and feed licence types (you can define them yourself, so say "desktop", "web", etc.) and options (like 1-5 users, 100% price, 6-10 users, 150% price, etc.), and associate those licence types with any uploaded downloadables from the product, which then become available selectively to based on what licences the customer based purchased. The prices can be set percentually or absolute, and each product can use defaults or overwrite them. Since it modifies a lot of price related things via hooks "along the way" I am not sure how generally applicable it is to other scenarios, but with some work it could be made to work more universally. Still somewhat work in progress at the moment, though.
  • @Rob Keller might have an idea for a nice work-around.
    I wish I had a good answer for you, but unfortunately I don't. When we hired the developers to code the current version of our site we had requested the ability to input prices exactly as @Johannes Neumeier has devised. That solution makes the most sense, but was not possible for them to implement. So basically our site has all the variations hard coded — and it's a terrible way to manage everything. Our fallback option was to import/export products with spreadsheets to help make creating the variations a bit easier, there are several plugins that will do this. In the end, that still hasn't been done... We haven't needed to add many new fonts to this site yet, but I will be looking into this more in the next week... hint hint.

    @Johannes Neumeier, do you have plans to finish this plugin still? Will you be sharing/selling it? I don't know how many Woo Font sites there are, but this plugin would be extremely for some of us!
  • I am actively developing the plugin for my own use and it will be used on two sites I'm building (one for a type designer friend, one for myself). While nothing speaks against making it available to others in one form or another, the current implementation is rather "hacked together" and specific to those site's needs, so I assume it won't work out of the box without some more integration and testing.

    It's indeed rather a specific niche, so I doubt that making it publicly available "as is" would result in happy admin users, or useful code contributions for that matter (happy to be surprised, if someone is interested in pitching in). One option would be to do an assessment on what's needed to make it a little more generally applicable or integrate with your specific site and needs. This would have to be further down the line, though, after those two projects I mentioned are launched. I'll post back here once I got something more substantial to share with any interested designers. Feel free to share how your sites and plans are developing in this regard :)
  • I've been speaking with Johannes offline about this and if there are other folks who would be interested in participating to develop this into a plug-in, please post so we can determine if there is enough interest to proceed as a group to help fund its development.
  • Gerben DollenGerben Dollen Posts: 7
    edited February 8
    Count me in please, thanks.

  • James PuckettJames Puckett Posts: 1,579
    I might be in depending on how much we have to kick in.
  • So indeed I've been developing this further. As I explained to @Stuart Sandler the plugin is essentially "backend only" right now, and for two sites I use it in I coded a customized front end that actually renders the license selections in different ways.

    The plugin allows you to use a "Typeface product" for which the pricing and files can be modular - it's like a default downloadable product with the added benefit of license options. You define license types, their available purchase options and pricing modifiers, as well as the files that should get bundled with what specific license purchase.

    Here a few screenshots to illustrate the backend:

    Setting up the licenses, ideally done once only, but changing the site-wide percentage modifiers or combo discounting options is possible on the fly:


    Creating a WooCommerce product and adding the different files for different license purchases and previews in the front end:


    Setting the product license prices (either inherit site wide defaults, or overwrite as highlighted) and selecting what files get shipped with what license:


    So once you have this setup the pricing for all fonts on the entire site can be changed, different license options tweaked, and you will have one product per style or family you sell, no matter how many license combinations - which is my absolute main goal for the plugin. For purchases the plugin will automatically generate one zip file for each product based on the selected license's associated files, and that file is generated on the fly when the user requests it.

    On the downside, here is what this plugin is still missing to be "generally applicable":
    • A common front end selection for licenses and price calculation that will work with a default WooCommerce theme
    • A common front end for customers to download the font packages — again, I have coded an implementation for this, but making it work default "WooCommerce"-ish requires work
    • A lot of save-guards: I've coded this for my own use, so I know doing this or that will blow how the whole show up; to make this a usable plugin this needs a lot more user interface and checks coded in
    • Possibilities to tweak more aspects; why I have not coded a common way of handling the front end is because I imagine 9 out of 10 type designers / foundries want the cart experience to be one way or another; finding the common ground solution and implementing it is one part, but also giving users / developers the option to customize this further with hooks, javascript callbacks etc would be desireable
    • Last but not least I was always able to set this up on my own servers, making sure all the download package creation, temporary files and caches, and adding new products work as intended; since this is absolute core business logic, this needs to be a lot more tested to be viable for others, ideally non-developers, to use out of the box


    As mentioned to Stuart I am obviously invested in this myself as any improvement or feature added for a public release will also make my own life easier, but realistically speaking, to make this public I am looking at days and weeks of development time that I am not billing anybody or producing retail typefaces.

    What I imagine could work is a bunch of people interested in this commit more or less to a donation of their own choice down the road, and are involved in development by steering what they need, testing the plugin, providing feedback, and if desired, can hire me to implement or integrate the plugin further for their respective sites. From there the plugin can go either donation-ware open source for anybody, or available as closed source perpetual use licenses to those who chip in.

    I know from my Fontsampler Wordpress plugin that there is a small niche market for type foundries and designers running a shop on Wordpress, but to be honest I am still trying to feel the room temperature with this. Is there demand and are people willing to seriously chip in? Two or three people willing to send me a hundred bucks doesn't make this viable for me, unfortunately, nor is it an honest return on my already invested time.

    Public discussion is welcome, as is private, and thanks to Stuart for reminding me about this :)

  • I'd be happy to donate, seems promising. I am developing a custom solution outside of Wordpress, but currently use a Woocommerce solution. Your work seems to solve a pretty big problem for small foundries looking to offer their fonts for sale in their own website. If this allows the sales of single fonts without crashing basic hosting services, thumbs up as well!
  • edited August 10
    @Johannes Neumeier Oh, was looking for something like this!

    I definitely think there is some demand for this— there doesn’t seem to be any decent alternatives to this out there. I guess everyone else just uses generic strorefronts/carts and hack them to fit their font licensing model.

    However, this needs them to be invested into the whole Wordpress / WooCommerce setup. Maybe a more generic solution? Just a JS plugin?
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