First of all Happy New Year! 🥳 Yesterday a deal has been achieved and so a new age is starting for TB. I will take this opportunity to step back. As most of you know, I am a merchant like majority here. My business has had a very good year due to Covid, but also due to continuing improving our shop processes. This also lead to some kind of overworking and I have to make some cuts.
I felt in the last weeks, that with my way of thinking as a merchant/dev, I am kind of exposed. My ideas, plans and problems aren’t shared by many other merchants. I could come up with dozens of examples (krona, elasticsearch and so on) but the three examples, which hurt me the most, are the following:
Carrier order editing. I implemented this feature in our store and it works flawlessly for us. The PR wasn’t accepted for some good reasons, which I planned to fix. But as nobody at all cared about this feature in the community, I haven’t done it.
Advanced Stock Management. Stock management is one of the most crucial and complex things, big merchants have to handle. The default version is broken/unusable. Since years! Multiple merchant’s leave the platform because of it. I have invested hundreds of hours to make this to a big strength of our company (chaotic storage, using barcode scanners, creating picking lists and a lot more). But even if I would, I couldn’t share this with the community. It is so far away from the core base and the needs from small merchants.
The “50$ VIP Club”. I always believed in the idea, that big merchant’s would have similar pain points like speed, search/filter functionality, order handling, stock handling, customer service and so on. That’s why I thought, it would be clever to unite these big merchant’s. For most of us it would be too expensive to hire a full time dev, who would code this all. So why not collect monthly 3000$, hire a dev and push this project together forward. The payers decide, what will be done, but also the little merchants can use the new stuff for free. It wouldn’t have been a donation at all. Just a strategic investment to share expenses. I know, that I haven’t come up with any concrete offer… I thank the few people, that were open to such an idea, but we were clearly too little and the interest in general is small. I am also a bit shocked, that 50$/month is such a huge expense for many merchants. But most may be really small and at the starting point of their business (ten years ago it would been the same here), others will have difficult economic situation with covid and some just prefer the freeriding.
I hoped, that a new fork or owner could bring some perspective back to me. But unfortunately the announcement yesterday didn’t. After all this months of waiting, I was expecting a well written official post with a clear roadmap and plan. That’s why I came to the obvious conclusion, that it’s much easier for me to go ego way. I asked @Smile to delete me as a moderator (which will also be a chance for somebody else, to get more involved in the project).
To not give any wrong impressions: I don’t switch the software!! I stay with this codebase, but will cherry pick new commits from thirty bees, prestashop and any thinkable fork in the best way. The rest will be modified/developped internally by myself and maybe I will hire a full dev in 1-2 years. If I am allowed to give you all a last honest advice: don't fool yourself. If you don't have a big budget, this is still one of the best codebase around and probably better than any hastily switch to woocommerce, shopify or whatever...
Here and there I will look around and check, what I am all missing 😄 I wish you all good luck! 🙏
PS: Sorry this post was supposed to be short…