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MindTwist

Any contribution for discontinued products?

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Hello,

 

I would like some input from other people on what they do with discontinued products. I have been thinking for a few months on doing a contribution to deal with them, since I haven't found any and I really do not know what everyone else usually does with products they do not sell any more.

 

The problem, you have a product in catalog and run out of stock. The product gets very well on Google, so you do not want to deactivate it, and people keep geting to your store on that product and asking when you will have more. Now, it might be a product you will have again in the future, or maybe a product that has been discontinued by the manufacturer and you will not sell it again, but you might have a different product that replaces the old one in your catalog.

 

Now, let's do some thinking on what to do if you are not going to have that product again.

 

I do not think that disabling the product on your catalog is a good idea, since it might rank very well on Google for several keywords. You might have a new product that maybe it even has the same name, but when Google points to your store, it is pointing to the old product, because it has been there for years, it has a better rating, maybe many people have posted links on forums recommending your product, etc. If you disable the product, all that work and all the "fame" that URL might have goes down the toilet. But, we could maybe add a new field to the products table that defaults to NULL, maybe a "products_replacement" field, that when it is set up it will point to a product number that replaces the given product.

 

So, maybe our product_id 22 has been discontinued and has been replaced by product_id 33, so on product_id 22 we would change product_replacement from NULL to 33. And then maybe on application_top we could make it so if we see we are dealing with a product_info, and the given product_info we want to see has a product_replacement set, we would give a "HTTP/1.0 301 Moved Permanently" error and give the new URL that replaces the discontinued product.

 

Now, this could probably even work if the product is disabled from the admin section.

 

But, we could even go one step further, and on application_top check if the visitor is a spider or not. If it is a spider, we would just hand out the 301 header above. If it is not a spider, and if we still have the product enabled, we would show the product as we always had it on the catalog, but with a new module (like the "also purchased" or "related products" modules) on top that would warn the customer that the product is out of stock and discontinued, but here you have the product that replaces it in catalog, please check it out.

 

Doing it this way would probably also mean having to modify many queries everywhere on our store, because the product would be enabled, and maybe we do not want it showing up everywhere when browsing the catalog. Or maybe product_info could be modified a little bit, so if the product is disabled on the admin section, but it has a product_replacement set, it will show the product anyway if someone goes direct to the product_info, but this way it won't show up when browsing the store, searching, etc.

 

I would like to see some input on other people that have found this problem before, and how they solved it (if they did). Yeah, just removing the product is the easy answer... Or just editing the product and replacing it with the new one is another one, but not the right way to do it.

 

Any hints will be appreciated on the subject.

 

Thx!


MindTwist of Twisted Reality and Twisted Tienda

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So... noone has ever needed to do anything like this, or ever worried about what to do with a product they do not sell any more? :(


MindTwist of Twisted Reality and Twisted Tienda

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What I did was the following....

 

In product_info.php - you will find the following:

 

if ($product_check['total'] < 1) {

 

The code just below that is shown when a product is disabled "Product not found"

 

Replace that with the code that usually displays the product, remove the "add to cart" link and price - and you have more or less what you are looking for!

 

Like so....

 

http://www.ngrcomputers.co.za/hpworkstatio...ard-p-6719.html

 

A basic way of doing it - but effective!

Edited by NGR

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Hi,

 

Has anyone got any further with this? as I too need something like this, so I am very interested in any progress.

 

Thanks!

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Hi,

 

Has anyone got any further with this? as I too need something like this, so I am very interested in any progress.

 

Thanks!

 

What we've done for discontinued items that have been replaced with a new item is to updated the old items description with "Discontinued" and place a link in the description to the new item, and change stock to 0 so it can't be ordered. After a few months what we do then is place the product in the "root catalog" and make it inactive. We don't delete because this could really mess up previous orders with suddenly the product just disappears. JUST A THOUGHT...If it's a VERY popular item that you think would really hurt if customers can't link to if and they would become upset by getting the "Product Not Found" message, why not update your .htaccess with the old product link and redirect to the new product link....like I said just a thought.

 

Frank

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Not sure if anyone is still active here, but I'd like to add a little.

 

I am very interested in adding actually two features for product availability.

 

My problem is that I'm not good enough with PHP & MySQL yet to fly solo. blush.gif

 

I have the contribution installed to show sold-out products (quantity = 0).

 

I also have a Quick Stock Update contribution installed which makes it easy for basic product updates.

 

Here's what I was thinking:

 

I need to list a product as discontinued when I find out my distributor or manufacturer no longer will be carrying a product and I have limited stock.

 

I also need to show a product as Sold for awhile before removing from the inventory.

 

What I was thinking is that I would need to add two records (columns) to the products table; discontinued and sold.

 

Then add a checkbox(s) on say the admins product info page to allow clicking Discontinued and another for Sold which would write to the database.

 

On the product listing and product info pages where the buy now button (edited - show sold-out but de-activated button) have it check besides quantity zero, have it check the other two records (discontinued & sold).

 

Would something like this be easy enough to implement?


- :: Jim :: -

- My Toolbox ~ Adobe Web Bundle, XAMPP & WinMerge | Install ~ osC v2.3.3.4 -

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Not sure if anyone is still active here, but I'd like to add a little.

 

I am very interested in adding actually two features for product availability.

 

My problem is that I'm not good enough with PHP & MySQL yet to fly solo. blush.gif

 

I have the contribution installed to show sold-out products (quantity = 0).

 

I also have a Quick Stock Update contribution installed which makes it easy for basic product updates.

 

Here's what I was thinking:

 

I need to list a product as discontinued when I find out my distributor or manufacturer no longer will be carrying a product and I have limited stock.

 

I also need to show a product as Sold for awhile before removing from the inventory.

 

What I was thinking is that I would need to add two records (columns) to the products table; discontinued and sold.

 

Then add a checkbox(s) on say the admins product info page to allow clicking Discontinued and another for Sold which would write to the database.

 

On the product listing and product info pages where the buy now button (edited - show sold-out but de-activated button) have it check besides quantity zero, have it check the other two records (discontinued & sold).

 

Would something like this be easy enough to implement?

 

If I was gonna try to impliment this from scratch (and I might try it as I hate disableing products) I would look carefully at the 'product_url' entry, where you can list the manufacturer's web link for the product. IE: F150's would be linked to the Ford F150 product page on ford's website. Simply duplicate that for the 'product replaced with' link... and reduce the stock level to 0 as suggested before, this gives you a 'fast' fix for what you want, you can then look at finessing it more so later. You might consider the 'CALL FOR PRICING' add on, and increasing/modifying that to include 'DISCONTINUED'

 

As a habit, if there is something I need to do, or want to do, I go looking for a module that does something similar, and then just hack the hell out of it til it does what my initial idea was.. doesnt ALWAYS work.. but ussually gets you far enough along that someone on the board can guide you along with code errors.

 

I am currently hacking the hell out of new_products.php and featured_products.php in my shop, to get a 'offlease.php' listing, specific to used & factory refurbished items.

 

.. specially useful with payment modules... ;)

 

Thomas

Edited by tkeats

A signature is something that reflects its user. - The dictionary

 

The question is not, 'to code, or not to code'

the question is, 'if we do not code, are we really alive?'

-- anonymous

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We need something like this. Does anyone have any idea if anything was ever developed? I searched the Add-Ons and didn't find anything.

 

Basically, we want the product to continue to be displayed on the website if it was discontinued. We just want the Add To Cart button removed so they can't purchase it and maybe display a message of some sort, like "This product has been discontinued. Please contact us if you need help selecting a similar product." at the top of the page.

 

Why do we need this? For many of the same reasons as MindTwist. Plus we sometimes have customers who we need to refer back to the original listing for warranty terms, return policy, compatibility notes, etc. If they were the last person to purchase it and we de-activated it because we can't get any more (and didn't want to risk someone else purchasing it), they can't see the listing at that point.

 

We do not automatically hide products when the stock goes below zero, because, for most items, we can usually get more (or already have more on the way). But discontinued products are another story. We only want to display them if the customer can't actually purchase one. We don't want credit card fees for orders we already know we're going to have to cancel...

 

The cleanest way to do this might involve adding a new field to the products table for a discontinued flag but, of course, that would involve adding the field to the product display page in Admin as well, so it could easily be updated. (Updating through mySQL is a pain.) A quick-and-dirty method would be to check the products_quantity value in the products table and, if quantity is set to -1000 or less, don't display the Add To Cart Button and also show the Discontinued message. Then it could be 'administered' from the existing products page in Admin by simply setting the quantity to a value of -1000.

 

Any thoughts or direction?

Edited by kru

Add-Ons personally installed:

Step by Step Manual Order -- Request Reviews -- Reviews in Product Listing -- Reviews in Product Display -- Review Approval System -- Leverage Browser Cache --
Header Tag Controller -- Multilayer SEO Pop Out Menu -- Follow Us Box -- View All Products -- USPS Shipping Labels -- UPS Shipping Labels -- Monthly Sales/Tax Report --
htacess Optimisation -- Remove Unused Images -- Master Password -- Admin Change Customer Password -- Database Backup Manager -- Zero Stock Report --
Searchbox Search In Descriptions -- Easy Populate 2.76i -- Barcode Rendering -- Admin Sort By Model -- Products Purchased Report

Add-Ons personally developed:

Search for email address, etc in Orders -- Discontinue Product

Add-Ons installed by others:

View Counter -- Site Monitor -- Image Thumbnailer -- Database Optimizer -- Recaptcha -- Discount Coupons -- Add More Fields

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Think it has been done before have no links but just change your search terms in google there are really many variations of code to hide the buy now button example

 

remove add to cart products oscommerce if quantity is 0

 

hide buy now products oscommerce if quantity is 0

 

etc ....

 

may put you on the right track

 

Regards

Joli


To improve is to change; to be perfect is to change often.

 

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@@kru Install the sold out addon.

 

Thanks. I had found something else to suit my purposes not long before your post but I looked at the Sold Out add-on and it helped me discover an oversight in what I went with. I ended up modifying the Easy Call For Price add-on for my purposes. I just replaced the Contact link in that add-on with text that says 'DISCONTINUED.' I also had to modify the product_reviews and product_reviews_write files to get rid of the Add To Cart button. (That's the piece I discovered in the Sold Out add-on.)

 

At any rate, I created a new add-on called 'Discontinue Product' if anyone is interested in doing this. I uploaded it to the Add-On page but it doesn't appear yet. I assume there is some sort of waiting period...even though it is not even close to the 3MB file size it says requires review...

Edited by kru

Add-Ons personally installed:

Step by Step Manual Order -- Request Reviews -- Reviews in Product Listing -- Reviews in Product Display -- Review Approval System -- Leverage Browser Cache --
Header Tag Controller -- Multilayer SEO Pop Out Menu -- Follow Us Box -- View All Products -- USPS Shipping Labels -- UPS Shipping Labels -- Monthly Sales/Tax Report --
htacess Optimisation -- Remove Unused Images -- Master Password -- Admin Change Customer Password -- Database Backup Manager -- Zero Stock Report --
Searchbox Search In Descriptions -- Easy Populate 2.76i -- Barcode Rendering -- Admin Sort By Model -- Products Purchased Report

Add-Ons personally developed:

Search for email address, etc in Orders -- Discontinue Product

Add-Ons installed by others:

View Counter -- Site Monitor -- Image Thumbnailer -- Database Optimizer -- Recaptcha -- Discount Coupons -- Add More Fields

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