Commerce Server 2009 and SharePoint (SharePoint E-Commerce)
I am sure anyone out there who has dealt with E-Commerce is aware of Microsoft Commerce Server (if you aren’t check it out).
Way back in 2007 Microsoft released a nice white paper describing the integration between MOSS 2007 and Commerce Server 2007 (can be found here: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyId=2AEB1A5E-43B8-483B-8CB2-86C0E82BF0AB&displaylang=en). There was a lot of feedback and requests for more integration options (especially with the explosive growth of SharePoint because it’s so totally awesome).
Well as many who saw the PDC presentation (http://channel9.msdn.com/pdc2008/PC59/) on the new “Mojave” or Commerce Server 2009 server product there are quite a few important changes that have been made to the product. Along with the completely redone API there are also a considerable number of web parts (and all their source code) that are now available.
What this gives us a fully-featured, out-of-the-box e-commerce shopping site in SharePoint.
The available Web Parts fall into these categories:
- Images Viewer Web Part – Display different product, catalog, or other images.
- Product Details Web Part – Displays the different products and product details on a product pages.
- Product Query Web Part – Displays the products and variants, usually based on a catalog, that a shopper is looking for.
- Site Map – Displays the map of your site.
- Channel Configuration* – This feature is a SharePoint list that provides the ability to assign a "channel name" to the site that has been created. A channel is any Web site that is targeted to a specific segment or device. The channel name is used throughout Commerce Server 2009 so that business and presentation logic can be tailored to address the specific needs of that channel.
- Inline Product Editor Web Part – Provides marketers and merchandisers with the ability to update specific product information on the site directly, so that they can see the changes instantaneously, in a what-you-see-is-what-you-get (WYSIWYG) experience. This allows for quick edits in descriptions and titles, or any other attribute information. These changes are reflected back to the master catalog within Commerce Server 2009.
- Product Provider Web Part – This is a utility Web Part, meaning that users will use it indirectly as part of other Web Parts, and is used by various other Web Parts to marshal data calls to Commerce Server and return product information.
- Simple Property List Web Part – This is a utility Web Part, meaning that users will use it indirectly as part of other Web Parts, and it is used to enable the selection of various properties from the Commerce Server Core Systems.
- Discount Ad Web Part – Displays advertisements and discounts that are relevant to both the current shopper and current site context. This Web Part works in conjunction with Marketing Manager and the various campaigns that are set up.
- Reviews and Ratings – List Web Part and Reviews and Rating – Average Rating Web Part – Displays the reviews and ratings for individual products. These Web Parts also let shoppers submit their own review and rating, with administrative workflow for management discretion.
- Store Locator – Integrates with Microsoft Live Virtual Earth so that the shopping site has detailed maps of store locations, enabling shoppers to find the store quickly.
- Add to Cart Web Part – Enables shoppers to add products to their cart.
- Checkout Web Part – Manages the checkout process. It is responsible for the flow of checkout operations, providing a uniform navigation model. This checkout process may include address and credit card management actions.
- MiniCart Web Part– Displays a summary, usually in the upper-right corner of the page, of the total items and amount in a shopper’s basket.
- My Wish Lists Web Part – Provides shoppers with a way to manage all of their lists.
- Order Details Web Part – Displays a read-only version of the shopping cart and checkout information.
- Order History Web Part – Displays previous completed orders, including order status.
- Shopping Cart Web Part – Displays all of the merchandise that the shoppers want to purchase.
- Wish List Detail Web Part – Displays the details of a shopper’s list
- Address Book Web Part – Provides the interface to view and start address administrative tasks.
- Address Detail Web Part – Provides the management functionality, such as adding and editing addresses.
- Change Password Web Part and Forgot Password Web Part – Provides functionality for shoppers to reset or change their account password.
- Credit Card Details Web Part – Provides the management functionality, such as adding a credit card and credit card information.
- Credit Cards Web Part – Provides the interface to view and start credit card administrative tasks.
- Live ID* – Provides functionality to associate shopper accounts with their Microsoft Live ID account, so that the shopper can associate their Live ID account to a particular shopping site.
- My Profile Web Part – Provides the management functionality for account profile information.
- Registration Web Part – Provides the functionality to let shoppers register on an e-commerce site.
- Search Box Web Part – Displays a search box that can be configured to search both the e-commerce site and any static content.
- Search Paging Web Part and Search Results Web Part – Displays the results of the search in a two-column pane, allowing shoppers to easily see what’s on your site, and easily page through a large number of results.
* These two items are technically not Web Parts, but they use SharePoint controls and are available in the Default site or can be integrated into other sites.
If you are looking for more information on the webparts and how to work with them I recommend reading up on it here: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd451458.aspx
Every one of the web parts/controls I listed above is outlined in this section of MSDN with an explanation as to how to work with it. 🙂
Another REALLY important thing to note is the fact that the full source code for these parts is available in the SDK (http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=4baddaf1-bd01-4131-bbbb-2e7db80b60d4&displaylang=en) for commerce server 2009. That’s right, you can use these as a foundation for creating your own, or extend them because all the code is available.
Hope you are as excited as I am about the new integration and web parts Microsoft is releasing along with the sizable advancements in product design (and in this case developer extensibility with the new API in Commerce Server),
P.S – Also found this video interesting (answers some other questions): http://mfile.akamai.com/14853/wmv/microsofttec.download.akamai.com/14853/TechEdOnline/Videos/457_low.asx