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Hi there, hope you're having a great Friday!
This is Colm and Simon from CommerceGurus, with a handpicked weekly roundup of eCommerce articles.
Firstly, we're delighted to welcome Robert and Umesh to the CommerceGurus team.
We have some big plans for the rest of 2020, especially focused around Shoptimizer and our new CommerceKit offering. It's fantastic to have two brilliant developers join us in building great eCommerce products.
Maria has written a 9-round comparison to find out which eCommerce platform, WooCommerce or Shopify, is right for your business needs.
WooCommerce and Shopify bring unique benefits to the table and share some common features. We’ll dig deeper to compare the features on offer between the two platforms.
We expect most of our readers to be more WooCommerce-centric but it's always useful to be aware of a rival's feature set. For certain projects Shopify could be a better fit.
WooCommerce vs Shopify - round by round
WordPress 5.5 was officially released this week. And it was a huge release with a lot of new features.
Kinsta have a blog post with an excellent deep-dive into the biggest changes which is well worth reading.
One perhaps little known one, is that WordPress have removed the jQuery Migrate library.
This is a good thing. One less dependency. But lots of older plugins relied on this - I've read reports of quite a few sites breaking due to this change.
The WordPress team have helpfully released a separate jQuery Migrate plugin to reinstate it which hopefully solves any issues which arise.
It's something to be aware of.
See all of the changes in WordPress 5.5
This is a very interesting new CSS rule which will be made available in Chrome 85 that could have a major impact on speed and performance of your website.
content-visibility enables the user agent to skip an element's rendering work, including layout and painting, until it is needed. Because rendering is skipped, if a large portion of your content is off-screen, leveraging the content-visibility property makes the initial user load much faster.
Read more about it on Google's web.dev blog
This week, WooCommerce's own blog has an interesting roundup of product page elements which can help improve conversions.
I'm glad to see that many of Shoptimizer's features are included, as well as suggestions we have previously written about such as using a reviews system.
I also looked at 17 Product Page Best Practices (with examples) so this is a good complementary article to go with it.
See 11 elements of high-converting product pages
This is one of the best articles I've read recently about developing software and how a product often starts simple, but slowly gains more and more complexity over time due to various customer requests.
It often morphs into something much too complex for the average user - and new rivals emerge to try and wrestle the 'simple approach' back.
There are some great examples included in the post, especially Wix and Squarespace, and how they've transformed their business models due to this.
Read about the complexity convection
To finish this week with something a bit different - I loved this article which analyzed the choices Lego made developing various interface panels.
These iconic, low-resolution designs are the perfect tool to learn the basics of physical interface design. Armed with 52 different bricks, let’s see what they can teach us about the design, layout and organisation of complex interfaces.
Discover the UX of Lego's Interface Panels
That's it for this edition. Simply reply to this email if you have any questions or suggestions, we read every message. Have a great week and best of luck with your projects!
Colm and Simon from CommerceGurus