Dec 12

Is Kentico 10 Performance for Real?

Last month's launch of Kentico 10 included some notable new features and enhancements to the Kentico EMS platform. I mentioned most of these items in my wrap up of the best Kentico month ever in my last post. However, one item stands above the rest in terms of enterprise scalability and high end performance. That item in my mind is the statement that "version 10 of Kentico can now handle 100 million contacts and one billion activities" 

Let that sink in for a few seconds, because that’s billion with a "B". That is a big statement, but exactly what does it mean? As a long time Kentico user, I have long been aware of the performance best practices that Kentico has published over the years, and a few unpublished hidden gems as well. So when I hear the word "handle" next to performance, I immediately start to think that it could be taken as a broad statement. My curiosity got the best of me, so I reached out to Michal Kadak, platform product owner at Kentico, and asked him to explain that statement in a more detailed way.

Keep reading to find out how Michal enlightened me on just how real Kentico 10 performance is.

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Mar 13

Upgrade to Kentico EMS Checklist

From time to time I get asked: What are the steps to upgrade to Kentico EMS from an existing Kentico CMS site? The technical answer is that upgrading only requires having the correct EMS license added to the installation of Kentico (which you can generate from the client portal). Once the license is in place, the system automatically enables the full feature set of Kentico. The easiest way to check if it worked is to look and see if all of the menu items (Contact management, Email marketing, Marketing automation, etc. etc.) show up for the On-line marketing category in the Kentico menu.

However, if you want to make sure everything is working perfectly, and get the fullest out of your Kentico EMS site there are few more things to consider. For instance, if you have upgraded from previous versions of Kentico like 5.5 R2, 6.0, or 7.0 some of the required features and settings didn’t yet exist and therefore can cause issues. Ensuring that the EMS functionality works correctly really does come in to play if you have had your Kentico CMS site running for a while.

As a result of upgrading many Kentico sites over the years, my team and I at BizStream have found that there are a few things that seem to be recurring issues, and honestly there are some items that we sometimes forgot to check or configure, when upgrading a Kentico 7.0 CMS site to a Kentico 8 or 9 EMS site. To solve this issue I have created a checklist to make this process easier for my team, and I thought it was worth sharing with the Kentico developer community. So today I am presenting my Upgrade Kentico CMS to Kentico EMS Checklist as a free downloadable pdf.

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Nov 02

Free Web Part for Kentico - Better Subscription Form

Most people agree that the Kentico email marketing capabilities are pretty good. However, one web part we frequently have to "tweak" to get to match a custom design is the tried and true Newsletter Subscription web part. Couple that scenario with the fact that some of our clients ask us to do something a bit special when it comes to asking for a subscription conversion, and you have that making for an interesting set of requirements. This was the motivation that got me thinking it was time to create a new web part that my team and other developers could use to solve this situation. As a result, today I would like to introduce a new free web part for Kentico.

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Aug 22

My Kentico EMS API Deep Dive Presentation

A few people asked me to provide my presentation from the Kentico User Group webinar that I presented at this past week. I have attached the presentation to this blog post.  I think it went really well considering the amount of people that attended and the feedback that I received from it.

Remember there is a great tip in there for how to use the new Kentico 8.2 MacroRuleInstanceTranslator class to optimize your contact group rebuild time and lead scoring calculation time for when you have a large volume of contacts in your Kentico instance.

The deck is embedded and can be downloaded from this post after the jump. 

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Oct 06

Zoho CRM Module for Kentico 8

Today I am pleased to announce my latest custom Kentico module, the Zoho CRM Module for Kentico 8.x. Why write a module for Zoho you might ask? Well according to a few sources Zoho is a very common CRM that many organizations across the world utilize for customer relationship management, and it just so happens to be the CRM that we use at BizStream. Since BizStream.com has been using Kentico EMS for quite a while now it made a ton of sense to extend and connect the two solutions. In doing so our activity tracking and contact information can flow between both systems. Yep that’s right the custom module features a two synchronization between on-line marketing contacts in Kentico and leads in Zoho. Keep reading to find out what other goodies this custom module for Kentico 8.0 and Kentico 8.1 features.

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Sep 17

How to Connect Disqus Comments to Kentico EMS Activity Tracking

My team and I use the Disqus blog comment system on the blogs that we have created for BizStream.com, my site here at Mcbeev.com, and many other of our client projects. Disqus is a great system for handling blog post comments. It makes the moderating, anti-spam, and community building aspect of running a blog a breeze. I could not recommend it more.

All of those aforementioned blogs are of course powered by my favorite ASP.Net based CMS, Kentico. You might be wondering why, for those very same sites, we do not use the built-in Blog Comment View webpart that comes with Kentico. The truth is that this one area of Kentico is a bit outdated in terms of HTML markup and overall functionality. These deficiencies make styling the webpart a challenge, to meet a good responsive design, plus the anti-spam system that Kentico has is ok, but not great. For those reasons we now use Disqus.

One thing that has always bugged me about using Disqus for comments is that the service is all purely client side / JavaScript based, and therefore I lose a little bit of insight into exactly who is commenting on my blog posts from a Kentico Contact Management and Activity Tracking perspective.

My goal today is to show you how to fix that and trap those client side events that happen via JavaScript and log them in the built in Kentico Activity Tracking database and UI. Dive into my two part mini blog post series by following the read more link.

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Jun 01

How to Increase Subscribers on Your Kentico Website with Marketing Automation

In this quick How To guide, I will show how you can increase your subscriber count using the power of Marketing Automation via built-in Kentico functionality. The best part about this solution is that there is no custom code required. That's right, all you have to do is follow these simple steps to help generate more subscribers for your digital marketing efforts which should in turn get you more leads from your Kentico website.

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Apr 13

5 Dead-Simple Kentico A/B Tests for Website Optimization

You might know by now that Kentico's Online Marketing Solution allows you to optimize your website content with an advanced set of digital marketing tools. In my opinion, the easiest and most simple way to optimize your page content is to utilize A/B testing. With the release of Kentico 8 optimizing your pages utilizing A/B testing has become even easier to do.

If you are not sure how to do an A/B Test in Kentico, the full example can be watched via the Kentico 8 A/B Test Feature Series that Thom Robbins has put togther over on Kentico DevNet. It's a really great walkthrough on every step you need to take in Kentico to create your A/B Test. Now on to the dead-simple Kentico A/B Test examples.

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Jan 26

8 Updates Coming in Kentico EMS 8

Kentico CMS / EMS 8 is slated to be released in just a few short months (official release date is set to end of Q1/2014).  But with early preview builds in the wild, some great feedback is coming in from the Kentico community for those who have taken a first look at it. I myself have been reviewing the latest builds for a bit now. I am truly impressed with this update, and I want to share with you what you can expect in the new release of Kentico Enterprise Marketing Solution.

Keep reading to find out about what’s new for the on-line marketing tools that Kentico EMS gives you. Side note one: they are no particular order other than the order I discovered them in. Side note two: All content of this blog post is from the Milestone 2 Beta version of Kentico 8 and is subject to change before the final gold version is released.

 

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Jan 11

Kentico EMS Quick Tip: E-commerce Conversion Names

If you are using Kentico EMS to power your E-commerce shop don't forget to set the On-line Marketing related Conversion Settings. There are three sets of Conversion names and values that come built in. 

  • Registration conversion - name & value of the conversion that will be logged when a user successfully registers on the website through the checkout process.
  • Order conversion - name & value of the conversion that will be logged when a user completes an order.
  • Add to shopping cart conversion - the name & value of the conversion that will be logged when a user adds a product to the shopping cart.

These conversion settings and values are very valuable peices of data to have when measuring the activity and effectiveness of your e-commerce website. Once these values are configured, your Activities log should show them with their repsective values. 

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