With the release of iOS 15 we are now able to support adding coupon codes while checking out using Apple Pay.
Next up 🗓
Keep in mind that features in this section can change based on our planning.
Every few weeks you can look forward to new features on the Highstreet platform. Here you will find an overview of the latest features, what’s next and what we are currently working on.
IN PROGRESS ⚒️
With the release of iOS 15 we are now able to support adding coupon codes while checking out using Apple Pay.
The intention of thus feature is to take another step in automating the process of buying products from the app. By remembering the sizes a customer has previously selected, we can take away a step in the buying process.
During the initial implementation of Video Lookbooks we made the audio be triggered by the physical switch on an iPhone. When the physical switch is turned off audio would never play. We realised that audio plays a huge role in the Video Lookbook content and it contributes to the engagement of the feature. We will therefore refine this feature a bit to make audio a more prominent part of Video Lookbooks.
The Highstreet Platform currently supports various backends and DIY implementations. To this list we are adding support for Shopify. A large chunk of the project is already finished, but the final parts still require a cycle to complete.
The latest Product Detail View (PDV) refresh on iOS introduced the key action buttons as a new UI element and a way to customise the PDV. The buttons are prominently featured in the product description section. This cycle we will add the KAB to Android as well.
The Product List (aka Lister View aka Category View) is one of the older sections of the Highstreet experience. With this project we plan to completely redesign and re-engineer it to offer exciting new features. This will be a huge project that will last several cycles before completion.
The Store hub is the next step in providing a seamless brand experience between the app and your physical stores. When customers enter your store and open the app, the Store hub will launch immediately. From this view they will be able to launch store specific features and see important information like their loyalty card, vouchers or recent orders. We now build this feature for Android.
This project includes some leftover work from the RxJava refactoring that was worked on some time ago. We reserved a bit of time for this in the cycle to continue working on.
We recently planned some speed improvements for iOS, based on measurements we did earlier this year. We now planned this for Android and Backend as well to work on. This should make the platform and browsing experience of our apps faster.
With the releases of the Store Finder and the Store Hub, we now have a solid foundation for our in-store vision to connect online and offline shopping in one seamless customer journey. To play more into this vision, we are now going to connect the store data to the apps.
For app users, the biggest benefit is that they will be able to use the app to see availability date from their favourite stores.
Signing up for an account inside a physical store always takes a lot of time. Information of every user needs to be filled in manually by either the store associate or some kind of form. With this new App Clip, we want to make the creation of accounts in your store effortless. This way you can gather memberships within seconds. In just a few taps your customers in the store can create an account and benefit from your app or loyalty program.
When looking back on the first App Clip we created, it turned out to be hard to get the App Clip to fit in the 10MB limit set by Apple. We were only able to make it fit if we enabled bitcode. There’s a bug (somewhere in Apple’s toolchain) that makes crash reports for large frameworks that have bitcode enabled near useless. Because we are planning on creating much more App Clips, we need to make changes that make creating and maintaining App Clips future proof. This project will take care of that.
Next up 🗓
Keep in mind that features in this section can change based on our planning.
Just launched 🚀
In an earlier cycle we’ve spent quite some time on fixing our setup for Logging, Monitoring and Alerting. We did spend quite some time on research and trying out various things and added AppSignal to our list of tools. We now want to finish this project.
A while ago we launched the home titles feature. We are going to add a bit more flexibility in the way titles are being displayed and how many characters can be used on the tiles within Studio.
With video lookbooks on our platform, you want to send traffic to this content to increase sales. We want to make this easier by having a new option in the home merchandise manager. You will only have to select a video lookbook and we will make sure it gets displayed on your home wall.
We recently created the possibility to upload launch images and account images in Studio. This would create a ticket for our services team. Now we want to implement dynamic launch images that automatically update in the app. This way, launch and account images become independently manageable within Highstreet Studio. It will also be possible to schedule these images.
We are going to start building our apps with the iOS 15 SDK so we can start leveraging new iOS 15 features and test if we need to make any changes for the upcoming iOS release later this year. This way we make sure the apps work optimal when Apple decides to launch it.
With this project we will be redesigning the home merchandise manager in Studio to make it a lot easier and more efficient to create and maintain home walls for multiple storefronts. We want to make it possible to publish and schedule rows instead of entire home walls, improve the way you preview them and make it easier to reorder your rows.
Sign in with Apple lets the customers of your iOS app create an account with their Apple ID within seconds. With just a few of taps your customers set up an account without the need to remember their password ever again. This feature will boost the conversion rate of account creations and will help to reduce conversion loss when customers are logged out and forgot their password.
We are going to work on the ability of our Android apps to synchronize the customer favorites with the commerce backend. This allows customers to save products in the app and also see these same products in their favorites section on the website (or the other way around). Right now we will focus on an implementation with Salesforce.
We are constantly doing work on improving the backend of the platform. In the upcoming weeks we are going to wrap up our products model refactor on Android. This means we are refactoring the way product data is handled. By reworking the product API’s our apps will become faster and more flexible.
With this project we are going to make several security improvements to our configuration-repository. This repository contains all configuration settings for all the brands. We also like to take the opportunity to work on the general structure of how we work with the configurations of our apps.
We are exploring how we can automate the process of replacing splash screens and account images in the apps. The first step we will take is building an interface in Studio where these images can be uploaded. We are also looking in to automating the entire process, where no app update is needed for these images to be changed. This will be considered for a future project.
We recently worked on the foundations for a complete navigation redesign on Android (similar to what we did on iOS). With this project we are finishing the redesign of the navigation and improve the way Android users can navigate your categories in the apps.
We are improving the way product requests are being handled in our Magento 2 checkout implementation. This way we can speed up the rather slow requests from Magento and make the experience in our apps better.
We recently implemented measurements to our apps and backend to see where we could improve in terms of speed. We analysed this data and are now going to implement some changes that would help to make the apps and backend on our platform faster.
We are constantly doing work on improving the backend of the platform. In the upcoming weeks we are going to further update our products model on Android. This means we are refactoring the way product data is handled. By reworking the product API’s our apps will become faster and more flexible.
We are going to work on the ability of our platform to synchronize the customer favorites with the commerce backend. This allows customers to save products in the app and also see these same products in their favorites section on the website (or the other way around). Right now we will focus on an implementation with Salesforce.
We recently let a specialised company perform a security audit on our apps and backend. We prioritised and filtered issues from the audit based on their threat level and whether the issue is actionable. We are going to fix the most important issues so that our platform becomes less prone to potential attacks.
We are really impressed with all the great video lookbooks we currently see on the platform and want to make the experience even better. With this project we make some refinements to video lookbooks that will make it easier to create them in Studio and make the experience better for your customers.
Video has the ability to convey an incredible amount of information very fast. Just like with video lookbooks, we believe video content is becoming more important in e-commerce apps. Video gives your customers more information about how the product looks and brands are discovering that it can help to reduce the return rate of your orders as well. Product videos will be available on iOS first.
Last year, we completely redesigned the navigation bar on iOS. Moving this element from the top of your category views to the bottom helps reachability and ease of use. This year we are going to bring this navigation pattern to Android as well. Because Android now has a completely different navigation pattern, we first need to do some foundational work before we can ship this feature. This cycle we take care of the foundational work so we can release the complete feature soon.
Apple is soon going to require apps to ask users for permission before tracking them. This is done using a system prompt. Until the user has given permission, apps do not have access to the Advertising Identifier (IDFA). While we do not use the IDFA or perform tracking ourselves, we do include 3rd party SDKs that do so. By default this popover will be disabled, but it can be activated on request.
We are constantly doing work on improving the backend of the platform. In the upcoming weeks we are going to update our products model on Android. This means we are refactoring the way product data is handled. By reworking the product API’s our apps will become faster and more flexible.
We currently require specific size restrictions for most of the images you upload in Studio. With this improvement we want to give you more flexibility when it comes to uploading images. Size requirements will become less strict and Studio will help you to crop your images to the correct size.
With this improvement you will be to track the effectiveness of your Apple Search Ads. You will be able to see who installed the app because of such an ad and what users do after they download your app because of an Apple Search Ad. This information will be integrated in our current analytics setup.
We currently integrate with Adyen using a Hosted Payment Page (HPP). The HPP integration we currently use needs to be updated to make it future proof. We recently did research on what would be the best approach and in this project we are going to update our Adyen integration.
The goal of this project is to migrate all remaining data caches to our new distributed caching system. This way we prevent having a single-point-of-failure for our cache and we have a more stable and scaleable environment for during peak traffic times
We are going to improve the way we do quality assurance within our Studio team. In this project we are going to create an automated test environment and improve the testing capabilities of push notifications. This way we can do better testing when we release a new feature or fix bugs.
Next to building new features, improving our existing ones also has our priority. We will spend some time on improving the performance of important parts of the apps like the category views and the product detail view. To do this we will first need to gather data in the front and backend of the apps to pinpoint where improvements can be made. After this is done we can plan specific tasks to increase the speed of these views.
We care a lot about realistic previews of the content you create in Studio. The device previews in Studio give an accurate way of previewing content, but the best test is to see your content on an actual device. We are going to work on a preview functionality for home walls just like you can already do for lookbooks. Just scan a QR code and preview your home wall on your device.
Lookbooks are a big pillar of our apps and a feature that is heavily used by all brands. To bring lookbooks to the next level we are introducing video lookbooks! This new type of lookbook will let you link products to your video content and present it in a way where customers are able to shop the products visible in your video’s.
The Store hub is the next step in providing a seamless brand experience between the app and your physical stores. When customers enter your store and open the app, the Store hub will launch immediately. From this view they will be able to launch store specific features and see important information like their loyalty card, vouchers or recent orders.
We currently integrate with Adyen using a Hosted Payment Page (HPP). The HPP integration we currently use needs improvement to make it future proof for the upcoming years. This cycle we are going to investigate multiple integration possibilities with Adyen. The goal of this research is to decide on the best integration solution which we are going to build in the near future.
All products that a customer requests in the app need to be fetched from your backend systems, through our Middleware. We want to reduce the time it takes to fetch these requests. We are building a solution where we will need to cache this data on our side so we can reduce loading times in the apps.
Our next improvement for the Store finder will include a toggle where customers are able to see a map view of all the stores from your brand. The map view allows customers to get a visual overview of the nearby stores based on their location. From the map view, customers can quickly navigate to the detail view of a store and find more information.
Home merchandise can already be linked to a wide variety of app content. We are expanding this with a new link type: App views. This will allow you to link home merchandise to existing app views like “Account” or “Store finder”.
We recently released the native store finder for both iOS and Android. Next to displaying the store finder in the bottom bar, we will now make it possible to place it on the account view. An additional improvement for iOS is to make the native store finder available on iPad as well.
In Studio, a lot of the interactions needed to set up content is happening inside popovers. We want to invest some time in improving the code and design of these popovers. This way they will perform better and it will be easier to interact with them.
This feature allows you to give away a free product to your customers when they have reached a certain set of rules. An example could be: “Get a free hat when spending €50”. With this feature you can let them choose and configure a product from a range of different products.
We are improving the way error messages are being displayed for input fields. We will now show input specific error messages so that users can more easily understand what information they need to correct. Next to that we are also building the foundations for complete server side validations. This will allow us to validate addresses more thoroughly. In addition, you could also choose to run these validations using your own preferred service and return custom error messages to the user.
We believe our apps should be usable for everybody. This is why we want to invest time in improving the app’s accessibility features. With these improvements we will work on optimising the use of accessibility features that are available natively on the iOS platform.
The quantity picker in the cart will get a new design. With this redesign we create a better connection between the quantity and the price by placing them in the same row. Next to that we make it easier for users to change the quantity of the products in their cart by simply tapping on the plus and minus icons.
With App Clips your customers can open a native app experience without having to downloads your app. They simply scan a QR-code or hold their phone near an NFC tag and they can start shopping.
Deeplinks are a great way to offer seamlessly integrated brand experiences. With this update we are adding more possibilities for using deeplinks in other app sections from within your app extension.
We are spending some time on updating the security measurements on our platform. This will mainly be backend work and the goal is to have a better protection against potential attacks.
With this feature we enable SFCC brands to utilize the promotions setup of Salesforce. When you configure a promotion, we will allow you to expose these as labels in the shopping bag of the apps. These promotions help customers understand where their discounts are coming from and if promotions are correctly applied.
We are steadily updating the code base of Studio to make it more reliable and to improve its performance. A bigger project is to refactor the content previews of your home merchandise and lookbook content. We know how important it is to have previews which are an accurate representation of how your content will be displayed in the apps. With this refactor we aim to make these previews more reliable.
With this redesign we are making the order history view completely native. This allows us to integrate it more efficient in to the codebase of our apps and allows us to take advantage of native features. Next to making it native, the order history view will also get a completely new design.
Physical stores are a big part of the customer journey and for many of the brands on our platform an important channel to build the brand. Right now everyone has the possibility to add a store finder through a content extension. The downside of this implementation is that we cannot build native experiences around the stores and leverage the experience of customers visiting stores regularly. This feature will open these possibilities.
With this improvement we refined the way your customers can add coupon codes in the checkout. The user interface should now we easier to use and is less prominent so that customers don’t feel like they are missing out on a coupon code.
The marketing opt-in on account creation was recently released. We are adding support to have a link here as well. The link will open in the in-app browser.
Do you want to learn more about Highstreet and how to create beautifully designed app experiences that will help you grow your business? Leave us a note and we will come back to you.