Are my Expectations of the CS Cart Team Unreasonable?

Having purchased a 3 storefront version of V4.0.1, we managed to get one store live despite a number of frustrating bugs. We had some custom addons written not only for bespoke applications but also to put right things that CS Cart in their wisdom decided was not necessary such as category images.

Now, prior to commencing the second store front, we paid CS Cart to upgrade us to V4.0.2 and to ensure that all bug fixes were implemented. After the upgrade, the previous custom addons and modifications had to be fixed so they would work again. Thankfully this was undertaken very quickly and efficiently by Alt-Team.

We were then hopeful of a quicker build to the second site but alas, no. We reported to CS cart Support on the 6th November that after importing 6,500 products, none were visible in the store front. They could be seen in admin though and if you simply added another character to the description, the product magically appeared. Additionally, products were displayed in the store front with a zero price value despite the same product in admin having a true value.

We opened an email from Support yesterday (11th Nov) advising this was a bug and how to fix it. We followed the fix but it made no difference so advised Support accordingly. 24 hours later you get the all too familiar we are all to busy for the next few days.

We are an end user, not a developer and simply need a package that does what it is supposed to do. Having put up with the bugs in V4.0.1, V4.0.2 has new bugs that has stopped us in our tracks. Yet despite having a package that does not allow us to populate a site with products, we have to sit on our hands waiting for Support to fix their bugs. What is the quality control within CS Cart like that allows new bugs to be introduced into functionality such as PayPal Express which worked previously in V4.0.1?

I am having a bit of a rant and that is due to the frustration of waiting for CS Cart to put right their mistakes but also having a project that is running behind schedule and staff not being fully utilised. We have very limited capability in carrying out modifications and far less in faulty finding. We do make mistakes and happy to pay to have them put right. A recent example is where we were trying to put a colour gradient on a menu, Support after a few ping pong emails got us where we wanted to be and okay 10 support points or so worth spending. Then we noted that our colour gradient was coming up as black in IE9 and earlier. Support advised that we were using the wrong menu option despite previously advising us how to modify the CSS for it. So okay, change menu and goodbye to the colour gradient and another 10 points. However, the top menu still shows up as black in IE 9 and earlier so this time we get told and implied that it was obvious that CS Cart uses CSS3 and IE 9 and earlier does not support this. There goes another 10 support points but at least a workaround was suggested but it sounds like V4 has a problem with IE9 and earlier and that accounts for about 20% of our visitors.

We run a successful store using V2.1.4 since 2010 and in those early days, we found Support to be excellent as was the bespoke work carried out by them. Now I have lost confidence, fortunately bespoke work can be contracted out which we are doing but I do have a problem in paying third parties to fix CS Cart bugs but the time is approaching when that may well be the cheaper option.

I was only too happy to recommend CS Cart to others, but now I honestly cannot. I have nothing against the support staff, I find them all helpful and they are just doing their job within the constraints they find themselves. I get the feeling that it is the CS Cart business model and the powers that be that has lost direction. It has been said before but get the basics right first before adding lots and bells and whistles but I guess that does not make good marketing headlines!

My reason for posting this? Well apart from getting it off my chest, it may well help others in their decision process of jumping into V4 or upgrading.

We will stick with CS Cart as the point of no return has long since past and no doubt in the months to come it will all settle down and end up being an excellent solution for us. It's juts the pain we have to go through to get there. I just wish we were a bit smarter and able to navigate our way around more and implement the bug fixes as and when they get published in the bug tracker.

Very well written and I agree with you on all points.

If there's one thing I'm sick and tired of, it's that generic “we're too busy to reply so we'll get back to you in 2 - 3 days” email. It's simply unacceptable considering the fast pace and demands of eCommerce. When I made a complaint about it, they used the excuse that v4 was burdening their support department.

I was under the impression that in business, when you're under pressure, you increase your prices and employ human resources.

We've seen the price increases, but a decline in software quality, and a decline in service.

Well, just to close this this out, still no resolution from CS Cart regarding the non-display of products despite ongoing albeit slow communications. However, just spotted that importing products with the bare minimum of fields populated (Product code, store, langauge plus Description, Price and Category) will not display the products in the store front but if you import the status field set to active as well, the products all display as they should.

Support has however identified the problem with the non-display of the pricing as an issue with an add-on we have not working after the upgrade to V4.0.2.

Clearly as we are not familiar enough with the workings of CS Cart and as the Support team are unable to provide an adequate and timely support at this time, we will be talking to third parties to see if they can assist us.

Hopefully things will settle back down with CS Support in the near future and they get back to providing the quality of service previously provided.

Thanks for listening!!

Well I guess it is time for me to jump on the soap box. First we waited for the 3.x to 4.x store import to be made available long after the new release was published, when it finelly did arrive, we are unable to import our products and data to the new version. We have submitted a support ticket asking for assistance. We got assistance all right, as with the others in the thread, we are not coding or developers we are end users relying on the company we have paid for the product and support to supply the support we are paying for.

The support/assistance we received back was 'you need to turn this option off" great what the hello is the option and where do I turn it off and why? Next support after asking for more information “you have not turned the option off and go adjust this and that” great again where the hello are the parameters (the this and that?) located that we are suppose to adjust and how?

We pay for support and receive words with out action.

OK i'm off the soap box