Qala is Angry Creative’s productised WooCommerce offering. In this blog post, we’ll look at what’s in this release which is a significant update with a bunch of new features, all developed under open source licensing. Qala is a WordPress- and WooCommerce-powered e-commerce solution that brings together everything a business needs to build an e-commerce site.
Whilst it’s built upon the functionality of WordPress and WooCommerce, it does not stop there. We have researched what functionality is needed to succeed with your e-commerce, curated existing plugin solutions and then created our own boilerplate theme and plugins to give our customers the best conditions for success. As you grow, Qala grows with you. It is designed with scalability and flexibility in mind such that whatever your roadmap, you can build on Qala safe in the knowledge that your technical foundation is good quality and built for stability.
So what’s new for Qala 2.8?
Qala Global Cart
Earlier we acknowledged that certain user journeys were broken – for example if a customer has products in their cart but switches to a different locale, the cart is emptied. We have now developed a new plug-in, our recommended solution for internationalising WooCommerce. This new Qala feature builds on MLP (MultiLangualPress) to connect products so that when a customer switches locale, the site recreates the shopping cart and applies the correct currency.
With seamless cart contents preservation, the customer’s user journey is not interrupted.
Reducing bounce and improving conversion rates
There is no longer a need for the customer to start over once they change language/location on your site which means that the customer is less likely to exit your site.
Customized email plugin
In Qala 2.8 you now have the possibility to change and customize your confirmation emails. Whilst limited customization is built into WooCommerce, most brands want to take things further. This Qala feature allows you to change far more of the email template, such as the size of borders, fonts and a whole lot more you can use to make emails as aligned with your brand as possible. Edit the design using WordPress customizer for instant visual edits – no more messing about with PHP templates and email-friendly CSS.
Improves brand identity
Customize the email to maintain brand continuity.
An easy-to-build email template provides the best user experience for CMS users, reducing developer dependency and time/cost to implement changes.
EU VAT plugin
The EU VAT Number extension lets you collect and validate EU VAT numbers during checkout to identify B2B transactions versus B2C. EU businesses with a valid VAT number can have their VAT removed prior to payment
Allows valid EU Business the choice of paying tax at your store
Encourages B2B sales – this is inline with general e-commerce trends where more and more B2B commerce is conducted online and is particularly important in these times of Brexit and COVID-19.
Updated Product Detail Page
As an e-merchant, you want to display your products as appealing as possible. That’s why we’ve updated this feature with custom content modules and an image gallery for a more dynamic product page.
Full control over WordPress edit screens and custom field data
Gives CMS users increased flexibility over how you structure and expose your product data to your customers, reducing developer overhead and therefore time/cost to market.
Possibilities to increase usability
Possibility to make the site as user friendly as possible, reduce bounce rate and increase sales
Support for Cloudflare Stream
When using video streaming it’s important that the files don’t weigh down the site and make it slower for users (or equally as important, degrade your Google Core Web Vitals performance). Users want smooth, non-lagging videos. With this new update we have secured the support for using Cloudflare stream videos in the background of your sites’ hero sections. Cloudflare Stream is a simple video hosting platform and uses adaptive streaming to ensure a smooth streaming experience.
Angry Creative (and Synotio – the hosting and infrastructure part of the Angry Creative group) are big fans of Cloudflare and use it extensively to provide network-level performance, security and resilience benefits for sites we host.
Learn more about Cloudflare Stream and the perks of using it here.
High quality video content
Since you probably spent a lot of time on your video content you don’t want that time and effort to go to waste.
Varnish Cache Clear plugin
Caching is both a blessing and a curse for websites. It’s very difficult to have high performance and scalability without it, but it can also cause problems. In partnership with Synotio, we have now developed a Varnish plugin to improve cache management and invalidation. This is something that won’t be visible for you as an end user. This is a silent feature but will have a positive impact every page load.
Improved customer experience
This plugin improves your site’s speed which makes your visitor experience better, helps you comply with Google’s Core Web Vitals and should help increase traffic as fewer visitors will experience slow load times, get impatient and move on.
Supports Adyen payment gateway
A secure transaction is a first and foremost need for any business that collects payment online. Qala 2.8 now supports the payment gateway, Adyen. Adyen, one of our partners, provides a risk free payment for your customers as well as providing a range of other features within their service.
Security for merchant as well as customer
A payment gateway ensures the security of the information
Protects your business from fraud
Detect, prevent and respond to fraud
Detect and manage everything in one place
Monitor fraud, review insights, optimize risk procedures
Support for reviews
A simple user-friendly tool for your customers to leave reviews
Reviews is a great marketing tool to improve and grow your business.
Support Billmates new smoother checkout solution
Billmate offers e-merchants payment solutions that are unusually easy to integrate and manage. As we’ve mentioned before a secure transaction is a first and foremost need for any business that collects payment online. This new plugin has a flow that is closer to WooCommerce’s standard when it comes to how and when the order is created in the e-commerce platform. This makes Billmate Checkout more compatible with other plugins that also expand the functionality of the checkout.
Compatible with WooCommerce
Smoother connection between WooCommerce and Billmate.
Improved customer experience
Smooth checkout process that offers various payment options for the customer to find and use their preferred one.
Supports Google Shopping Feed (Google Merchant Center)
Google shopping feed lets you reach those bottom-funnel customers that already know what they’re looking for – and gives them an easy way to find your products right in the search results.
Great marketing tool
With the opportunity for potential customers to find you where they are.
Reach a wider audience
Due to the above, you have the possibility to reach a wider audience in other markets.
We’re already hard at work on future versions of Qala – notably we’re baking in Gutenberg (the new WordPress page builder) which will give you a more powerful content editing experience as well as bringing Qala better in line with WordPress’ roadmap. Gutenberg also allows more flexible delivery of combination content/product marketing, allowing you to create more powerful buying experiences.
Do you want to know more about Qala and what we can do for you? Contact us and we will help you on your journey to become a more sustainable and efficient e-commerce!