AllmakesShadow – User Guide v.4.1

Introduction

Allmakes Shadow is a desktop utility that uses the internet to deliver real time information from Allmakes 4x4 Trade Portal. Use your Trade Portal login details to open Allmakes Shadow and check stock, check prices, check availability and take advantage of special offers. You can then upload orders, manage a shopping basket, place orders, check previous orders, print invoices, and even check your account status.

Since its launch at the beginning of 2009, Allmakes Shadow has been downloaded over 2000 times by Allmakes customers all around the world. With so many people using the software in so many different time-zones and environments, we have been fortunate to be able to obtain useful and relevant feedback from our customers to help us develop and enhance the Allmakes Shadow experience and build in even more exciting features as a result.

In 2011, we surveyed our customers on their experience with the Allmakes Shadow software. The response was formidable and the feedback received from this was combined with the comments and feedback made with our technical and sales teams to form the basis of Shadow version 4.

The latest version of Shadow represents a huge leap forward. This becomes clear, the moment you open the program.

 

New Design

Our customers told us that the “Sidebar” system that Shadow operated in was fiddly, difficult to read and didn’t present enough information on the screen. Features had started to feel like they were being “crammed” in.

Therefore, as well as a redesign to the interface, we have decided to change the presentation format of Shadow to simplify the layout and to accommodate the functions of the software more efficiently, while also acknowledging a world where screen sizes are getting bigger.

We have also aimed to better personalise the experience for our customers by providing a welcome screen with account and order summaries along with both customer and contact details.

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Shadow users now have a larger window area within which to operate and while all of the core features of Shadow have been retained, the navigation has been split so that the most popular Shadow functions are grouped together on the left with the additional resources being grouped along the top.

Many of the key components that make up the interface have been revised. The buttons, the emoticons, the input boxes, all have a more elegant and professional feel.


Search

Quite a lot of work has gone into the search system. The key change to this area is that you can now specify a quantity within your search at the same time as specifying either a part number or a description and the system will not only return your search results but will now let you know if they are available. All in one go.

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Previous Searches

We also now keep a record of your last 50 search queries (visible in the box under the “search” button) so that you can easily recall a search you made previously. Just click the search you wish to redo from the list, and the results will appear.

Add to Basket

Our new search mechanism allows for a very simple add to basket facility. Just click the  at the end of each line and the line will be added.

Once added the  will change to a .

As usual a list of special offers will be visible within the search screen, however a dedicated “specials” page has been developed to better notify our customers of new offers and promotions.


 

CSV and DMS Orders

Uploading a CSV to Shadow is now much more informative than it was previously. We now report on each line as it is uploaded. Once an upload is complete, the log can be printed to keep as proof of upload. This will also report on any items that were superseded or not found.

For those using Allmakes DMS, the same system is applied when an order is sent from DMS via Shadow, providing you with the reassurance that your order has been transmitted safely.


 

My Basket

A number of changes have happened to the basket. Most were after conversations with some of our overseas customers who felt that Shadow had space limitations that affected their ability to view orders efficiently, so one of the first changes that we should make you aware of is that the basket will now stretch to show more lines at once.

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Adding new lines

Also, when a line is added, the item is displayed and highlighted in the basket list. This is in response to customers who were getting frustrated with having to scroll down every time a part was added.

Part Number Variations

You will also notice that the variations box on the right hand side now not only returns the variation part numbers of the last added item, but also shows you whether the quantity you requested are available or not.

Sort, Toggle and Print

Three super-useful functions all pulled together into one area above the basket.

Sort Order

Added to give our customers easier order management, you can use this utility for rearranging the sequence of your basket into:

·         Part Number Ascending

·         Part Number Descending

·         Brand Ascending

·         Brand Descending

·         Price Low to High

·         Price High to Low

·         Original Order Sequence (Basket will reload if selected)

Toggle View

Added to allow even more items to be displayed in the list. Simply click on this to minimise the size of each line. Click again to restore it back to normal size.

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Print

This is one of the most requested changes that we received from our customers. You can now print your basket before you send it. Simply click the button and the list and basket summary will be presented in a printable window. A print option will then automatically appear.

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PR2 and Terrafirma

As the Allmakes 4x4 Premium Range (PR2) and Terrafirma are our too most popular ranges, we now highlight these whenever they are listed using small, non-invasive icons to the left of the brand name.


The Webcat

Possibly the biggest development to Shadow is the inclusion of the Allmakes 4x4 Webcat system. This system has been available to the Portal since early 2011, however the speed and display possibilities that Shadow brings to the system transforms this service into something altogether more useful.

Browse the catalogue

First you select your Vehicle and Engine, then select your category, then sub-category and then group. The list of part numbers for that group will be displayed in the list at the bottom.

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Select from Diagram

Still can’t find the part you want? Well, that is why we added the ability to pick items directly off a diagram. If you see this button  appear above the Groups list when you select a Sub-Category, then there is an exploded diagram available for you to use. Click on it and the following will appear.

Click on one of the boxes to see the parts that the item relates to:

 

Search the catalogue

Know what you’re looking for? Just type it into the search box and click “Go” and the results will be displayed in the list at the bottom

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Check Fitment

As fitment will vary depending on the Year/VIN of the vehicle, you can click on the Check fitment button at the end of each row in the list, and this will display the fitment info for you.


Add to Basket

Double click one of the lines in the list to display the product card. From here you can specify the quantity you require and add it to your basket.


 

Specials

Following the success of our Specials campaign in August, it became clear that special offers needed to feature more heavily in our online applications, and we have therefore given “Specials” a dedicated area within Shadow.

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Customers can go down the list and select all the specials they wish to take advantage of and then add them all in one go to their basket. If a line is highlighted, then a bigger picture appears on the right hand side.

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