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Welcome to BlogEngine.NET

If you see this post it means that BlogEngine.NET is running and the hard part of creating your own blog is done. There is only a few things left to do.

Write Permissions

To be able to log in, write posts and customize blog, you need to enable write permissions on the App_Data and Custom folders. If your blog is hosted at a hosting provider, you can either log into your account’s admin page or call the support.

If you wish to use a database to store your blog data, we still encourage you to enable this write access for an images you may wish to store for your blog posts.  If you are interested in using Microsoft SQL Server, MySQL, SQL CE, or other databases, please see the BlogEngine docs to get started.

Security

When you`ve got write permissions set, you need to change the username and password. Find the sign-in link located either at the bottom or top of the page depending on your current theme and click it. Now enter "admin" in both the username and password fields and click the button. You will now see an admin menu appear. It has a link to the "Users" admin page. From there you can change password, create new users and set roles and permissions. Passwords are hashed by default so you better configure email in settings for password recovery to work or learn how to do it manually.

Configuration and Profile

Now that you have your blog secured, take a look through the settings and give your new blog a title.  BlogEngine.NET is set up to take full advantage of many semantic formats and technologies such as FOAF, SIOC and APML. It means that the content stored in your BlogEngine.NET installation will be fully portable and auto-discoverable.  Be sure to fill in your author profile to take better advantage of this.

Themes and Plugins

One last thing to consider is customizing the look and behavior of your blog. We have themes and plugins available right out of the box. You can install more right from admin panel under Custom.

On the web

You can find news about BlogEngine.NET on the official website. For tutorials, documentation, tips and tricks visit our docs site. The ongoing development of BlogEngine.NET can be followed at Github. You can also subscribe to our Youtube channel.

Good luck and happy writing.

The BlogEngine.NET team

Importance of Values and Ranges

What is the Value?

The value is one of the most essential components of every price modifier. The value represents the amount that will eventually be used to calculate a price, usually the amount to charge for the price modifier. The value is, in most cast, an amount of money and can be a positive or negative number and may contain decimal places.

Costing in courier software

Using the Value field

Depending on the action of your price modifier, you may wish to use the value field to achieve different results. If the action is a Flat Amount, you may be charging a flat rate of $2 for this price modifier. If you are using an Incremental Overage Amount, you may be charging $2 for every 10 pounds on shipments using this price modifier. In both cases, the value entered should be 2.

When using some actions, the value will be represented by a percentage. In these cases, the value should be entered as a whole number, not as a fraction of one. For example, if you are using an action type of Flat Percentage to calculate and charge a flat 10% in tax, you would enter a value of 10.

What is a Range?

When using an overage type action in a price modifier, a range can be specified using thresholds to indicate when the price modifier should be used and when it should be ignored. The range can be positive or negative numeric values and may contain decimal places.

The range will be compared against whatever you have chosen for the watch value to determine if the price modifier applies. Ranges are especially useful when you wish to create a modifier that only generates a price on orders when certain criteria are met.

Range of prices in dispatching software

Using Ranges to Set up Tiered Pricing

As mentioned above, ranges can be used to create modifiers that have certain requirements to apply to a shipment. If you wish to create a tiered pricing structure, you can use ranges to help achieve your desired results.

For example, if you wish to have an advanced tier of pricing and service, you can create multiple price modifiers. When using this tier, you may wish for certain charges and services to apply, such as white glove service or insurance. You may also wish to ensure that this option is only applicable if the Declared Value is over $100. Using this method in conjunction with groups can allow you to create complex, tiered pricing structures that automatically calculate in the background.

Defining an Increment

Incremental charges in courier software

What is the increment field?

Increments can help you to create a lot of flexibility within your pricing structures. The increment field becomes available when you are creating a price modifier that uses an incremental overage action type. By default, the increment will usually be one, but can be changed to any value you require, including a positive, a negative, or one containing up to three decimal places. The value entered into this field defines the amount by which to count the watch value, which means that you can tell OnTime which field to look at and gather information from.

When to use an increment?

When you wish to have OnTime look at a certain value in an order and adjust the price of the order based on that value, you will want to use an increment. Additional charges can be created with an increment based on the price modifier’s chosen watch value. Possible watch value choices include weight, quantity, distance, height, width, depth, cubic dimensions, declared value, base price, and custom amount.

Using the watch value in conjunction with increments allows you to create virtually any incremental price modifier that you need. Charges for additional weight, mileage, value, volume, and more can be made. Because increments can be any value, you can create specific incremental price modifiers that best suit your business. For example, if you ship large freight you can create an additional weight charge for $10 for every 100 pounds. But, if you ship small freight you may wish to create an additional weight charge for $0.10 for every 5 pounds.

Utilizing other features of price modifiers such as Ranges, Start Calculating at, and groups with incremental modifiers can allow you to create complex, layered pricing structures with various tiers.

Adjusting Prices with Actions

Actions are different types of arithmetic that OnTime delivery software uses when calculating a price modifier to determine a price.

Price adjustment in courier software

Types of action include Flat Amount, Flat Percentage, Flat Overage Amount, Flat Overage Percentage, Incremental Overage Amount, and Incremental Overage Percentage. All of these actions can be positive numbers, negative numbers, or contain decimal places.

Flat Amount and Flat Percentage Actions

These actions will perform simple equations using a specific amount or percentage and apply to the base price of an order. These action types are useful when you want to apply an unchanging charge, such as a $5 delivery fee or 10% commission.

Flat Overage Amount and Flat Overage Percentage Actions

Based on a price modifier’s watch value and thresholds, these actions can be used to apply to an order when certain criteria are met. Charges calculated by these actions will only be applied when the specified threshold is exceeded on an order. You may wish to use these actions when applying additional fees, such as rates for orders with exceptional weight or mileage.

Incremental Overage Amount and Incremental Overage Percentage Actions

Like Flat Overage Amount and Percentage actions, these actions use a price modifier’s watch value and thresholds to determine if the modifier should apply to an order based on the outlined criteria. Incremental action types also use the increment field to determine if charges calculated should be applied to an order. These modifier actions will apply every time the threshold is exceeded. These actions can be used when applying fees that should be charged again and again, such as per-mile or per-pound rates.

What is a Price Modifier?

Welcome to the first in our eight post Price Modifiers series. In courier businesses, prices often need to vary from shipment to shipment based on a variety of diverse factors and OnTime has streamlined this process to make it simple to setup and use. Whether you are new to OnTime courier software or simply looking for a recap, there will be something in this series for all users. We will start by breaking price modifiers down. 

Delivery software price modifier and accessorialsWhat is a Price Modifier?

Simply put, price modifiers adjust (or modify) the cost of an order up or down.

Price modifiers are the way that OnTime creates accessorial or optional charges on orders. Modifiers can be used to automatically calculate and apply charges such as a fuel surcharge or an additional weight charge to your orders.

Price modifiers can be made to perform various functions and can be grouped to create complex, flexible pricing structures. Modifiers will automatically run in the background when they are applied to orders,so OnTime calculates your prices on-the-fly.

Modifiers are created at a global level; once the modifier is created in OnTime it can be used anywhere and applied to any customer without having to re-create the same modifier. OnTime allows the modifiers to change across multiple price sets, allowing flexibility.

Classification of Modifiers

Modifiers can be classified into two categories: customer and driver. Both categories are used in a similar manner to change pricing, but the driver category is designed to work with employee/sub-contractor pay and the customer category for customer billing.

Types of Modifiers

Different types of modifiers accomplish different tasks. Below you will find a breakdown of our 4 modifiers. 

  • General Option
  • Signature Capture
  • Collect on Delivery (C.O.D.)
  • Distance base price

Over the next several weeks, we will go in-depth into each section of price modifiers. Below you will find a breakdown of the series: 

  1. What is a Price Modifier?
  2. Adjusting Prices with Actions
  3. Defining an Increment
  4. Importance of Values and Ranges
  5. Where to Start Calculating
  6. How to Test a Price Modifier
  7. Zone Based Lookup Tables
  8. How to Group Modifiers

Improvements to Data Import Efficiency

When using OnTime's import data feature, there has always been the need to map the OnTime fields to the corresponding columns in the Excel or CSV file being importing. A new feature has been added to simplify the process of mapping those fields.

In older versions of OnTime, the most recent mapping format would be used for each imported file. Every time that different files, formats, or column names were used, the fields would need to be re-mapped. This could become a time consuming process, especially for companies that routinely receive ASN (advance shipment notices) from their customers.

Now, OnTime users may create Custom Mapping Templates to efficiently import varying formats as often as necessary. Simply import a CSV or Excel file, map OnTime’s corresponding fields, and save that mapping format as a template. Each time that you import files with varying formats or column names, you will be able to use a template that you have previously created.

Delivery software custom mapping templates

To improve your overall efficiency with the import data’s new Custom Mapping Templates, download the latest version of the OnTime software.

OnTime API “Connections Made Easy”

The OnTime API (Application Programming Interface) makes it possible to connect a live OnTime account with other software systems across the internet. The API can be used to create, update, and track orders in real-time.

This API is made available as a set of SOAP based XML Web Services built on open standards. Our comprehensive documentation includes examples, descriptions, and explanations to help software developers integrate their solution quickly and easily. Our API is designed to work with virtually any programming environment and platform. Integration into your project can be accomplished within minutes, not days or weeks.

Before you get started, download our OnTime Web Service API Documentation. Review the document and click on the video below to get started.

Courier software API and SDK

If you need further instruction, please contact our customer support team at 541-326-4200 and press 2 to reach a support specialist.

Import Data to Your OnTime Account

With OnTime, you can save time by automatically importing mass amounts of data from CSV and Excel files. To import data to your OnTime account, simply open the Data tab in OnTime Management Suite, click on the Import Data button, and map OnTime's fields to your file's corresponding columns.

Courier software Excel data import

New subscribers to OnTime will find this feature especially useful while setting up an account. Older company data can be quickly brought into your OnTime account, without the need for manual entry. We provide import templates to help you to easily organize your data into a format that will work best with OnTime’s import data feature.

Current OnTime subscribers often use this feature on a daily basis for a variety of different tasks. If your customers have many shipments that will need to be entered into your OnTime account ahead of time, they can be collected in bulk as an ASN (advanced shipment notice) and imported all at once and all information will be automatically included in your account.

When importing information from customers who are in a different time zone than you, adjustments can be made to the dates and times during import. This way, OnTime automatically will rectify time zone differences between your customer and your company.

When shipment information needs to be quickly referenced, you can avoid the necessity of typing in tracking numbers by using barcode scanning. Scanning a barcode will automatically prompt OnTime to reference an order with the matching tracking number. To make sure the barcode scanner can provide instant results, be sure to acquire an ASN (mentioned above) file from your customers. This file can be quickly imported into OnTime, ensuring that your barcode scanning runs smoothly starting with the first scan.

If you need to create a large number of shipping labels for a customer based on a list of orders, OnTime can help you to do so quickly. Import the document that the customer has sent you into OnTime using the import data feature and select those orders from OnTime's Tracking View. Then, simply right-click and select the shipping label type that you require to print or email the labels for your customer automatically.

The import data feature can help OnTime users to greatly improve their overall efficiency. Bypass the need for manual entry, quickly access your data at any time, and store your data on OnTime’s secure cloud.

OnTime’s International Features

OnTime provides international customers with the tools and support that they need, anywhere in the world. As of August 2015, OnTime is successfully used as courier management software by active companies in 132 countries around the world.

International Courier Software

As a part of our international support, OnTime will use your local time zone, helping to avoid confusion or conflicts. This feature will help you to be sure that your company’s scheduling and records are always accurate.

Regional localization support adapts to the user’s local setting and format for currency and dates. Without the need for manual adjustments, all information and records that you use with OnTime will be accurate and appropriate for you and your customers.

OnTime is equipped with full Unicode support, meaning that you can use any language, including Arabic and Chinese. No matter what country or language your business operates in, OnTime can help you to improve your efficiency and manage your shipments.

Technical support is included for every OnTime subscriber. If you ever encounter any difficulties, our expert support agents are available to assist.

OnTime’s international support sets us apart from any competing software. With two years of research and development invested in OnTime’s international support and nearly 300 regions formally supported, you can be sure that OnTime will work for you, wherever you are.

For more information about OnTime’s international availability and support, contact us now.

Improving Your Customer Service: Beyond the OnTime Customer Web Portal

In our last post, we discussed the customer service improvements that the OnTime Customer Web Portal offers. Along with the Web Portal, OnTime’s programs provide your employees with a number of useful tools that can help to quickly satisfy your customers’ needs.

Tracking Orders and Drivers

OnTime Dispatch allows users to track orders in real time. Your employees can offer this information to customers at their request, at anytime. From OnTime Mobile, your drivers can input up-to-date information about orders, such as order status. OnTime Dispatch users can message OnTime Mobile users through our programs, allowing for optimal communications. All of this information ensure that your collections and deliveries are assigned appropriately, handled properly, and completed on time. 

Price Quotations

From OnTime Dispatch’s order entry screen, quick and accurate price quotations can be created at your customers’ request. These quotes can be saved to enter into the system later, improving order entry efficiency.

Quick Views

Saved searches, called Quick Views, can also be created using our Advanced Search function to find orders and information anytime. When customers request such information, your employees will be able to fulfill those requests immediately.

Manage Your Employees

OnTime Management Suite gives your administrative users access to employee management tools. These tools can be used to ensure that customers are serviced at the right times, in the right places, and by the right people.

Report Generation and Delivery

Reports can be generated, printed, faxed, or emailed from your OnTime programs. If your customers ever require reference to detailed information, your employees can do so. Additionally, the Workflow Designer can be used to automate the sending of these reports, saving your employees’ valuable time.

OnTime's programs and features can help your employees provide the best possible customer service. Which OnTime tools do you find most useful for managing and automating your customers’ satisfaction?