Note: This product is an add-on to your BLOX website, for information about adding it please contact your regional sales rep. If you are not sure who your sales rep is, or you do not have their contact information, please contact TownNews Customer Support by submitting a ticket through your BLOX CMS admin (for more information see Ticket Workspace) or by going to the TownNews.com Customer Support page. Or you can call 800-293-9576.
NOTE: To work with this BLOX application you will need to be granted access in Settings / Users / Groups. If you do not see this application in the drop-down in the upper-left of your BLOX CMS desktop, or for more information about groups and getting access to different parts of your BLOX CMS admin please see Groups - Recommendations / Best Practices. The site administrator at your location should be able to grant you access, or you can contact TownNews Customer Support by submitting a ticket through your BLOX CMS admin (for more information see Ticket Workspace) or by going to TownNews.com Customer Support. Or you can call 800-293-9576.
Note: A site administrator at each company will have the power to create / delete groups, and add / remove group access for their employees. TownNews.com is not responsible for managing groups or staff access.
Note: You can contact TownNews Customer Support by submitting a ticket through your BLOX admin (Support / Ticket for more information please see the Ticket Workspace doc) or by calling 800-293-9576.
Ad-Owl Application Permissions
Group permissions must be set up for Ad Owl.
There are four options: (The options that are set by default are in bold).
1 Marketplace / Ad-Owl / Full access
- Full access allows you to perform any action in Marketplace / Ad-Owl.
- For more information see Marketplace / Ad-Owl
2 Settings / Webservice keys / Full access
- Ads can be exported from BLOX Ad-Owl via a webservice.
- For more information see How do I export Ad-Owl orders into my print product? (Flex) (Zen).
3 Marketplace / Ad-Owl / Manage orders
- Manage orders allows you to approve and deny orders. You cannot change the Ad-Owl setup in any way.
- For more information see Ad-Owl Order Transaction Process (Flex) or Ad-Owl Order Transaction Process (Zen).
4 Marketplace / Ad-Owl / Change settings
- Change settings allows you access to Application settings to create, edit, and delete Publications, Packages, Upsells, Rates tables, Discounts, Custom fonts, and import Settings.
- For more information see Ad-Owl Application Settings Discounts (Flex) (Zen).
Table of Contents
BLOX Ad-Owl is an application that is used to manage the classified ads that have been submitted by users on your site and by BLOXCMS Admin users that create them from the BLOXCMS Admin in Marketplace / Ad-Owl. Ad-Owl requires that a classifieds Publication first be created, and then Ad Categories can be built beneath it. After your publications and categories have been established, packages, upsells, and custom fonts can then be setup, allowing all users to create engaging and attention-getting classified ads. In order to use Ad-Owl, you do need to make sure the Ad-Owl Webservice is set up on your site. For more information on how to use BLOXCMS Webservices, click here.
From the drop-down in the the upper left choose Marketplace / Ad-Owl...
NOTE: Not sure how to access BLOX Applications? Click here
Note: Admin users must be granted specific access to the Application Settings. For more information on Ad-Owl Application settings, please see the Ad-Owl Application Settings doc.
Order and Transaction Search Terms
You can search for Ad-Owl orders using the search tools on the left-hand side of the screen. The Search Terms in Ad-Owl operates differently than that found in other BLOXCMS software applications; the Search Terms available change based on whether you are searching for an Order or Transaction. Regardless of the Search for option selected, both choices allow you to use one or multiple search queries at the same time. Search criteria can be reset by selecting the Reset button.
1 Search For: This option allows you to search either by order, or by transaction type (capture, debit, credit). Note that the Search criteria changes depending on your selection.
2 Search Text: Search for a word or phrase contained within the order/transaction name, purchaser, ad text, package, etc.
3 Order Status: The status of an order. Order status includes: New, Approved, Denied, and Canceled orders.
4 Order Date: Utilize the From and To calendars to choose a date range in which an order was placed.
5 Modify Date: Utilize the From and To calendars to choose a date or range in which an ad was modified.
6 Run Date: Utilize the From and To calendars to choose a date or range in which an ad was ran.
7 Submitted By: You can search based on the Admin User that submitted the Ad Order, by "Any user," (default) or by "Self-Service." Self-Service means a user logged in and submitted the Ad Order from the front end of your site (e.g. you go to the gas station and pump your own gas...user goes to your site, creates their own ad).
8 Publication: Place a checkmark next to the Publication(s) that you would like to include within a query. Publications are created within Application Settings.
9 Transaction Type: Any one or a combination of transaction types can be selected. Options are: Capture, Debit, and Credit. For definitions of these terms, please see the What are the types of payment transactions and their definitions? doc.
10 Transaction Date: Utilize the From and To calendars to choose a Date Range in which a transaction was initiated.
11 Test Orders: When searching for Transactions, place a checkmark in this box if you wish to Include Test Orders in your search.
Search Results is the main area of the Ad-Owl Workspace where the ads that have been ordered are displayed. To view more information about an order, either double click it, or highlight it and then select the View button in the upper right corner of the toolbar.
At a glance, we can view the following information about orders that have been placed by users on the front end: Order ID, Order Date, Order Status, the Name of the person that submitted the ad as well as their Email address, the Publication, Start Date, how many days that the ad will Run, and ad Price.
The columns of information regarding the Ads you see when you open Ad-Owl depends on the columns you selected to be displayed. To modify the columns, hover over a column header and click on the dropdown arrow that appears and click on it. Navigate to Columns and check the ones you want to see.
Since users who submit Ad Orders are logged, make sure the column "Name" is visible, then sort your Search Results by Name. A good case scenario would be to do a filtered search by User (under Submitted By in Search Terms) and make sure all the Ads submitted by your Sales staff is paid commissions on the Ads they sold.
Viewing an Order
Once an order is placed, it will automatically be approved by the start of the Run Date unless you click Cancel Order in the upper left corner on the toolbar. When you open an Order to review it, there are six sections to the Order Form. If the order is for a Classified Ad and it has been approved, a View/Edit button will appear in the General section towards the bottom. Clicking on it gives you the option to View and/or Edit the Classified Ad.
1 General: This displays general information about the ad that was placed.
- Order ID - System generated ID for the order.
- Status - Options are New, Approved, Denied, and Cancelled.
- Price - Determined by the package selected.
- Order Date - Date the order was generated on the system.
- Transaction ID - System generated ID for the transaction when the order was processed.
- External ID - An ID you assign to the order (e.g. that customers account number you assigned to them).
- Category - The Category that was selected when the order was placed.
- Package - The Package that was selected when the order was placed.
- Online Ad - This is what you enter as the Text for the Ad. You have the option to modify it here and can click on Rebuild. You can also View the Ad in an Asset Edit window.
- Order Placed By - This is the User ID that created the Ad Order. If it says "Self Service," that means the Ad Order was placed from a Site User from the front end of the site and not a BLOXCMS Admin user.
2 Contact: This displays the contact information of the person that submitted the ad.
- Name - This is based on the User Account of the person placing the Ad Order.
- Business - This is a field on the form where you can manually add a business to the order. This is Not connected to the Business Directory in your BLOXCMS Admin.
- Street Address - This is based on the User Account of the person placing the Ad Order.
- City/State/Zip - This is based on the User Account of the person placing the Ad Order.
- Phone - This is based on the User Account of the person placing the Ad Order.
- Email - This is based on the User Account of the person placing the Ad Order.
- IP Address - This is the IP address of the device that was used to place the Ad Order.
3 Schedule: This displays information about when the ad will run and for how long.
4 Purchaser Comments: Here is where any additional comments (information) the user submitting the order will appear. This added in on the front end of your site.
5 Print Preview: This displays a preview of how the ad should appear on the front end. There are four Preview items.
- Ad Text - A preview of the Ad Text.
- Fields - The Fields used and what the content is of them.
- Online Content - What the Ad looks like online.
- Upsells - A list of all the Upsells selected and their cost.
6 Order Notes: Any notes made during the process creating the Ad Order will be positioned here.
When viewing an order, the following options are available on the toolbar: View Past Actions, Print, Approve Order and Deny Order.
View Past Actions: Select this option to view the history about an ad. This will populate a window that details items including: order date and time, payment date and time, order number, and other ad information.
Placing Orders in Ad-Owl
You can still add a Classified Ad from logging in on the front end of your website. Now anyone with Administrative permissions, can place an Ad Order from the Ad-Owl application in your BLOXCMS System.
From the dropdown in the the upper left choose Marketplace / Ad-Owl (Not sure how to access BLOX Applications? click here). This opens the Ad-Owl application. In the Search Results window on the right side of the toolbar, click on the New button to open the New Order window.
Once the New Order window opens, there are five fields.
- Steps - This is along the left and consists of the 10 steps that also act as shortcut links to either go forward or back during the order process.
- Content - While there is not a "title" for this section (top middle), this screen will update based on the step the admin is currently working on. To navigate through the Steps, click Previous or Next.
- Notes - This is a text area allowing the admin to enter details about the ad the moment they create a new order.
- Print Preview - This will display a preview of what the print ad will look like. It's not real-time. Clicking Next will then refresh the preview.
- Order Details - This will display the current & combined total price of the Package plus Upsells chosen as well as lines, words, characters of the print order, publication, category, and package.
Note: You cannot jump ahead until the previous step is complete.
There are 10 Steps to completing a new Ad Order.
1 Publication: If the site has more than one Publication available, those Publications will automatically appear under Content (upper middle) of the New Order window. To add a Publication, see Ad-Owl Application Settings documentation.
2 Category: A category must be selected before you can proceed.
3 Package: A similar selection tool now appear under Content forcing the admin to select a SINGLE Package from the list.
4 Print Content: If the package selected allows Print, a simple text box to add text for the print portion of the order appears. Print Preview will show the text that is entered.
5 Online Content: If the package pre-selected allows Online Content, options to add an "Online Title" & "Online Content" will appear. It includes a WYSIWYG editor. You can also add Image Assets to the content.
Note: In order for the Add Image function to be active, your Image Settings cannot be set to "0" which is found in the Package you selected.
6 Upsells: This window will display all of the available Upsells assigned to the particular Package that was selected.
7 Run Dates: This window will display Calendar wizard and how many days for the Ad to run.
8 Contact: By clicking on the Select button, your User Directory will open. Select a User and their information will be populated in this field.
9 Review: This window will display details about the order as it currently stands including Order ID, Category, Package, User, Run Dates, Discounts (if a discount applies to the Package selected), and Price.
All the publications listed in the Ad-Owl Application Settings will be populated here. As you hover over the applications, a selection tool appears and you can select the publication you want to use. If only one publication exists, this step is by-passed and the publication becomes the default one to be used.
A selection tool will appear under Content forcing the admin to select a Single Category from the list. The Categories that are populated here for you to choose from, are set up in Ad-Owl Application Settings (to add a category or sub-categories, click here).
A Single Package is required. You cannot continue if a package has been selected. Once a package has been selected, the price is automatically updated in Order Details portion of the form.
If the package selected allows Print, a simple text box to add text for the print portion of the order appears. Print Preview will show the text that is entered. If the package selected does not allow print, the system ignores this step.
Entering Text Before Clicking Next
Text Appears in Print Preview After Clicking Next
If the package pre-selected allows Online Content, options to add an "Online Title" & "Online Content" will appear. It includes a WYSIWYG editor. These two fields will be pre-populated from the previous step if the package allowed it. Any of these fields can be overridden by the Admin. The fields will remain blank if the package did not allow the Print option.
If the package allows an online photo, the Add button will be active and allow you to add a photo at this time.
In the Upsells step, notice an Add and Remove button in a toolbar in the Content (upper middle) area of the New Order window. Clicking on Add allows you to add an Upsell item. Remove will delete a single Upsell item selected. The Upsell options available are dependent upon the Package that was previously selected. If there is a price associated with the Upsell item, the price in Order Details is automatically updated.
Click on Add to add Upsell options. This will open the Select an Upsell window.
Once you've selected the Upsell option, the window closes and you return to the New Order window to complete the Ad Order.
Note: If the upsell selected is a Style (bold, underline, etc) or Online Property (flag, priority) clicking the Next button will automatically apply the Upsell to the Upsells. However, if the Upsell is anything else, clicking Next will open a third window requiring the admin to take further action in the application.
- type = Stock Image Upsell – images assigned to this upsell package will then be visible in this window. Admin may only select 1 image before proceeding to Save. They may also Cancel.
- type = Custom Image Upsell – photo upload tool will appear and allow the admin to select a photo from his/her computer. Perhaps the customer has emailed them a photo. Photo must be uploaded before Save option. They may also Cancel.
- type = Additional Category Upsell – similar to Step 3, this window will display all available categories pre-selected in the upsell package. Admin may select 1 or more categories to apply to their upsell.
- type = Print Upsell – this window will display a plain text box similar to Step 5. Content must be filled in before option to Save is available. Otherwise, Admin can cancel to exit this step. Applying content in this plain text box will in turn update the Print Preview.
- type = YouTube video – this window will display three text boxes: "YouTube URL," "Title," & "Description." URL and Title are required before Save.
This window will display Calendar wizard and how many days for the Ad to run. The dates and times that appear are based on the Date Rules set up in the selected Package. The Expire Time is based on the Scheduling Rules in the selected Package under "Scheduling and Limits." Order Details on the form will automatically update. The Run Length options will be populated in the dropdown menu.
By clicking on the Select button, your User Directory will open. Select a User and their information will be populated in this field.
Here is a chance to review all the criteria for the Ad. At this point the admin can change any of the contents of this order by clicking either the "Previous" button or clicking on any of the Steps.
Note: Changing any of the contents in Steps 1-4 will clear out all of the preceeding steps you just completed.
This window will display the payment portion of the order. Once you enter the Credit Card information (requires a Payment Handler) and click on Save and Submit, the order is complete. However, there is an option to check Bill Me Later which overrides the Credit Card requirement and will also complete the order. This is not available on the front end of your site. Upon the successful transaction, Ad-Owl will create the Order and Online Ad (if the package allows it). It will also send the customer an email notification and send the order to the Admin for your site. If this is a Test Order, check the "This is a Test Order" checkbox.
Placing Test Orders
Admin users can submit test Ad-Owl orders by placing orders on the site while in Preview mode. To get your site into preview mode, click the View Site button in the lower right corner of the CMS Admin screen, then add /place_an_ad to end of the URL (example: https://admin-newyork1.BLOXcms.com/yourpaperhere.com/ tncms/admin/action/main/preview/site/place_an_ad). When a test order has been submitted, it will show up within the Search Results, accompanied by a symbol, beneath the Status column. To view more information about a test order, either double click it, or highlight it and then select the View button.
A test order can be deleted by highlighting it and then choosing the Delete Test Order button.
After a test order has been marked for deletion, a Confirm test order deletion prompt will then ask for confirmation. Select the Yes button to finalize the deletion.
Note: Ads can be exported from BLOX Ad-Owl via webservice. If a webservice needs to be created, please contact your Project Manager.