I give it a title [a short title because the first Design Name input box is limited to 18 characters
I add some keywords and click ‘Submit Design’
Now I’m taken to the My Designs page. I often have to reload this for the new design to show up
Commission is set to zero. So I have to change that and then confirm Twice! that I want to change my commission. Because obviously SS want us to be really sure we don’t want to give our work away for free!
BTW if you just change the commission rate in the input box and then click ‘Publish Design’ without going through the two Save Buttons first, your commission reverts back to zero again.
Also, assuming [as is often the case] that the 16 characters on the upload page wasn’t enough for the proper title of my design, I have to enter my Design Title again, this time using the full version.
OK. Now I’ve saved those changes, I click ‘Publish Design’ to go to the next section.
The long title I just saved on the previous screen is gone again and we’ve defaulted back to the 16 character one from the initial upload. So I need to put in the title –AGAIN!
Next I have to select a Main Category and Sub Category from two popup menus. Neither of the menus is sorted in alphabetical order. So I have to hunt round to find what I’m looking for.
I add a description, accept T&C and submit that design.
Now I’m back to the My Designs page. Time to create a product. So I click ‘Create a Product’ to go to the Create Product page. There I create my product which is amazingly almost user friendly –hurrah!
OK. Now we’re rolling. Back on the ‘My Designs’ page again. time to add the product to the Marketplace. I click on that:
Brilliant! Now in the next window that opens, Title, Description & Tags fields are all blank again. Because, as with the defaulting to zero commission earlier, SS obviously thinks that there’s no way we’d actually want to use the same Title, Description & Tags we’ve entered previously [TWICE in the case of the title!] when we add our products to the Marketplace. So I need to type them all in again. If you’ve lost count thats now three times for the Title and twice each for Description and Tags.
That done, it’s back to My Designs again. Now I’ll add the product to my shop. I click ‘Add to Shop’ button and, on the face of it, it seems straightforward; no dialogues or ‘Save’ buttons to click through. That’s encouraging. But wait a minute. I’m not sure I like the look of this ‘Change Settings in Shop Button’. So lets see what that reveals:
Yes! –you’ve guessed it. In the window which that takes me to, Title, Description and Tags are blank yet again. So I’ll now have to type them in again for the fourth time [Title] and third time [Description & Tags]
Going through that palaver is bad enough for a single design on a single product. Imagine having to do that when you’ve created some variations on a design for a collection and want to make it available on a few different products. It’s like death by a thousand cuts!
Now I’ve used the uploaders and product designers on loads of these POD websites; Amazon, Redbubble, Neatoshop, Teepublic, DBH, etc. and, to be honest, they’re all pretty awful
It’s like the people who programmed them never actually bothered doing any kind of usability studies on the interfaces before sending them out the door. And they certainly don’t appear to have heard of the concept of the computer freeing us from the drudgery of repetitive tasks.
But while all those other uploaders/designers make you endlessly repeat the same steps over and over again, Spreadshirt’s is the only one where it feels like the uploader is actively working against you, by actually removing information you’ve already entered and making you do it all over again.
And now your forum software is actually changing what I write. I write Shop in a post and it changes it to the Store. I write Redbubble in a post and it changes it to AddThis. Have I fallen through a hole in the space-time continuum here and landed in an alternate universe where the machines hate us?
That is weird. Doesn’t happen to me though. Are you using some Plugins/extensions in your browser that could cause this? (such as AddThis…?)
Redbubble Redbubble Redbubble
Regarding the usability issues: you seem to be using a legacy user area. We have introduced our current user interface for the partner area in 2016, the legacy user area has not been developed since years…
To use the current partner area, you need to open a new account.
Ah. Sorry. the weird translation error was my browser seeing this was a German site, assuming I was writing in German and thus attempting to auto-translate what was already in English into English! Artificial Intelligence, eh? Artificial Stupidity more like!
As regards the “legacy account” issue:
I’ve just created a new account and am seeing the new uploader which is slightly better than the old one but still far too much repetition when uploading a collection of designs.
But that’s beside the point. I’m a bit irritated to say the least to find I’ve been battling the old interface for the past 3 years when you had a new one in operation. Why on Earth did you not even tell your existing ‘partners’ that there was a new interface available and why do we have to go through the hassle of creating a new account to see & use it?
Also, please tell me there is some way to import all my existing products from my legacy account into my new one, so I don’t have to go through the hell of uploading them all again, or the inconvenience of having to maintain two accounts!
But we have, multiple times We send at least a bi-weekly newsletter to our partners. Could it be that you’ve opted out of them?
The topic of the partner area and all releases related to it have been covered multiple times on our blog in the last years and there’s always a newsletter campaign along with it. Like literally there is something about this topic almost every month!
We even asked partners to take part in a user test in 2016, see the blog post above.
etc. etc. etc.
Now, I understand your frustration, in any case.
Could you elaborate your workflow a bit? The latest release of “single product creation” (see one of the blogpost above) did introduce some new complexity to the product creation, that’s true. It’s still been the most requested feature in the history of the partner area. Seems like maybe we have users from two different camps?
Overall, you can still bulk upload and bulk edit tags and design prices. There will be improvements for choosing a default colour, too.
And as I always say… the best thing about the partner area is that it’s still being developed. It will only get better
As currently there is no possibility to automate it. It’s just not possible. It sucks, I know. This is however also a big hot topic internally and we are currently mapping out scenarios for possible solutions and carrying out risk assessment. Personally, of course I really wish it was easier
That really sucks. I have about three year’s worth of designs on my existing account. There’s no way I’d be able to manually transfer them to the new account before the heat death of the universe.
Yes, I have opted out of the email newsletters, as I do on most websites I’m a member of. I’m sure I’m not the only one who does this. Who wants even more spam in their inbox?
Did it never occur to you to let people know about the new Designer via some other method too –such as email all your users?.. or put some kind of notice on the old Designer, letting us know there was an alternative?
If you don’t mind me saying so, this has been one of the worst managed user migrations I’ve seen on any website I use:
1: Only users who’ve opted in to your email newsletter even get to hear about the new version of the site in the first place.
2: Existing users need to open a new account to use the new version of the site
3: There’s no way for existing users to migrate their data from the old version of the site to the new one.
Really. Did no-one discuss this beforehand and bring any of this up?
OK. I haven’t time to write a detailed breakdown at the moment. But here are a couple of thoughts, off the top of my head:
1: NO ‘DUPLICATE’ FUNCTION.
This is my biggest frustration with every single Uploader / Designer on every single POD site I use [currently Amazon, DBH, Neatoshop, RedBubble, Spreadshirt, Teepublic] There’s never any way to DUPLICATE what you’ve just spent ages doing with one design [Selecting products, colours, tags, description, title, etc] onto another product and just switch the artwork.
99% of the time, when I come up with an idea for a design, I’ll come up with 2 or 3 variations on it. One of my designs [which is for kid’s birthdays at various ages, with various different coloured & positioned cartoon cats] has 35 variations. Another of my designs, which uses various old comedy catchphrases has 15 variations.
What I want to do in those cases is:
Upload the first design variation, write my title, description and tags, select which products I want to put the design on, position it on those products, select my colours and save…
…and then see a nice button or menu item like ‘DUPLICATE with NEW DESIGN’ which allows me to duplicate that product, remove the artwork for Variation 1, replace it with the artwork for Variation 2 and hit SAVE again to create a new product available on all the same products, in all the same sizes and on all the same colours as the previous one I did –just with different artwork.
Obviously I’d have to edit title and description, but that would be a minor hassle, compared to having to recreate the entire thing from scratch each time.
I just cannot fathom why none of the POD sites offer this facility. They all encourage you to upload as many designs as possible, and create lots of products. Yet they all prevent you from saving any of this configuration of description / products / colours for use on another design, to make the procedure easier.
Provided the artwork for Variation 1, 2, 3, 4… etc is the same pixel dimensions, it would be so easy to implement this too.
2: NEEDLESS REPETITION
OK. First off your new Uploader / Designer is light years ahead of your old one. So credit where it’s due. I was delighted to see that it now learns what products you’re likely to choose after uploading a design and defaults to selecting them next time [ie. when I upload a design and choose kids T-shirts and bags to put it on, after doing this a couple of times, the Uploader /Designer started selecting these products for me]. Well done!
[Teepublic’s designer has been doing that for years, but it’s good to see SS catching up here.]
However, I still have to select a default colour each time for each product and this is not remembered, nor applied to the next product in line. I realise that the colours aren’t the same across all available products But, with Teepublic’s designer, if you pick [say] Red for the default colour for the first product, then it will apply that default to all the other products which have Red available as a colour option, leaving you only to select a default colour for the products which aren’t available in red.
It’s not a major annoyance, but an “apply to all” would be nice here, to save having to set default colours on each item individually.
[BTW: Redbubble and DBH win the “We hate our Users” award for this aspect. Redbubble forces you to pick the colour for each individual item from an HTML colour picker, so if you want consistency, you have to copy/paste in HTML colour codes. DBH allows you to choose a range of colours. I think it’s something like 20. But you have to pick them from a colour palette of 256 colours. Good luck on choosing the same set there, for each product!]
The new bulk uploading is good, as is bulk application of tags. However my enjoyment of the bulk tag editing was marred somewhat by the ‘Artificial Stupidity’ of the automated tags which the Designer placed on my uploads and which I had to remove first [it also took a while for me to figure out how to do this effectively].
Is there a way to turn off the tag suggestions?
I uploaded various designs with cartoon cats, so titles containing things like “Blue cat…”, “Green Cat…”, “Pink Cat…” etc. to find the designer populated them with a load of junk tags like “Pink Ribbon”, “Blues Music”, “GreenBay Packers” [what does that even mean?!], etc.
More a hindrance than a help!
3: NEEDLESS REPETITION [AGAIN]
We’re back to the series of designs issues again.
When I uploaded my latest series of designs [the one with the 35 variations I mentioned earlier], the new uploader allowed me to upload them in bulk, 20 at a time –YAY! It allowed me to bulk add the tags in one go –SEMI-YAY! [points deducted for having to clean out the automated junk tags first]. But…
I still had to painstakingly copy / paste title and description individually for each one? Why can these not be applied to all, as the tags are?
I bet you’re going to say "Because you wouldn’t want the same Title and Description on different designs!’ which is true. But I might want very similar Titles and [if it was appropriately worded] the same Description on a set of designs.
Let’s hypothetically Imagine I’ve got a series of designs featuring fruits; Apples, Pears, Strawberries, Lemons, Oranges, Bananas… etc. with a slogan beneath. Let’s go for “I’d love to be eating a…”
So, I want my titles to read like: “Funny Fruit Design. I’d Love to be Eating An Apple”, etc.
and then, for my description:
“These designs should please anyone who likes to get their daily dose of vitamin C the natural way. Why not show the world what your favourite fruit is!”
In this case, I’d want to apply the exact same description to all the designs and I’d want to apply the same title to all and just edit the last word.
OK That’s a silly example [although it might just work!]. But it exemplifies exactly what I mean about the pointless repetition.
With a fruit-flavoured set of designs like this, I might also want to make them available on the same set of products and in the same set of colours [as per my previous gripes about repetition]. But, with no way to duplicate settings or save choices, something that should take me about 10 or 15 minutes ends up taking me an hour or more, because of having to keep repeating actions that I shouldn’t need to keep repeating.
[For the old uploader I’ve been using for the past 3 or 4 years, that “hour or more” would most likely turn into an entire afternoon and end with me lying gibbering in a corner. So I suppose I should be grateful for small mercies!]
4: NEEDLESS REPETITION [YET AGAIN]
With my first upload on the new site [the 35 variations one], I did as I always did on the old one; set my design markup and then clicked to add each design to the Marketplace.
A few days later I’d still not received any confirmation the designs were live [C’mon guys! How difficult is it to keep people informed?]. So I logged in and found they’d all been rejected. After emailing support to find out why, I learned that it was because they were “Part of a series” which is no longer allowed.
OK. I’ll put my hands up to that one. I didn’t know you’d changed your policies on this, as I’d uploaded several series of designs on the old site, without issue. But, again, it would have been nice to have seen a warning somewhere on the new site saying the content policies had changed, so I’d have known to read the new ones!]
Anyway, that’s beside the point.
The email from support said I was free to use series of designs in my shop. So I logged on again and used the “Select All” option to select all my designs to add them to my shop.
Yep–you guessed it!
The only ‘bulk’ options I was offered, after selecting all my designs was to edit the tags or delete them. So here we go again on the endless repetition merry-go-round: click each design to edit it, select ‘Edit’ next to Sales Channels, click a toggle button next to Select Shops, click Done, click Back to All Designs, select next design… rinse and repeat 35 times.
Again. Did it never occur to anyone that we might, want to select a load of our designs and add them to our shop[s] in one go? Why the pointless repetition again?
So, in summary, I’m glad the new Designer / Uploader is still a “work in progress” and, as I said earlier, it’s a hundred times better than the old one [although the bar could hardly have been set any lower] but –and this goes for the people behind these softwares on all the sites I use– you really need to bear in mind that which is the absolute fundamental when it comes to computing:
THE PRIMARY PURPOSE OF THE COMPUTER IS TO FREE US FROM THE DRUDGERY OF REPETITIVE TASKS.
So, any time you’re making someone do the same thing over and over and over again, when the computer could be doing it for them, your software is flawed. It’s as simple as that.
I hope that was somewhat constructive and not a complete rant!
For want of anything better to do for an hour or so, I decided to go through the painful process of manually transferring some of my designs across from my old account to my new one. And once again, I’m left head-butting the wall in frustration.
Quite apart from the annoyance of having to do this in the first place [about which I’ve moaned already], even doing it manually, I’m running into pointless annoyances. So…
The character length of allowed titles and descriptions is different on the new version of the site than it was on the old version. So, quite often the titles and descriptions I’m pasting from the old version of the site to the new one are being truncated.
So, another pain point. Not only am I having to painstakingly copy/paste this info across from the old account to the new one, in a lot of cases I’m having to re-write the info because you’ve arbitrarily changed the number of characters allowed.
Why? No reason at all that I can see and just adds more annoyance.
Also, some words are now being banned that were allowed before. And again, for no apparent reason I can see. A few of my designs are related to computer / programmer / geek / nerd type subjects and had titles like “Funny Geek Nerd <…whatever…>”
Now, when I’ve copy/pasted the info for those designs across from the old site, the new Designer Uploader is telling me “Geek” & “Nerd” are not allowed in the title [Why?] –although they apparently are still allowed in the description and tags.
6: SANITY CHECKING
When I’m pasting in the tags for a design from old account to new account, the Uploader/Designer is suggesting tags I might want to use. OK. that might be helpful –except that half the tags it’s suggesting are ones I’ve already used.
Basic Sanity Check: if a tag’s already been used, don’t suggest it!
Also, for one design, I pasted in the tags from the old site and the tag suggestion suggested some more. A couple of them were actually new and useful, so I clicked to add them to the existing tags. Then I got an alert telling me I’d exceeded the 25 tags allowed. It turned out the tags I’d already pasted in added up to 25. So…
Basic Sanity Check 2: if the existing no. of tags is 25 and the limit is 25, don’t suggest the user adds more tags!
It probably sounds like I’m being really nit-picky here and maybe I am. But though each one of these details may be small in itself, it’s just another piece of grit in the machinery, another minor irritation to add to all the other minor irritations. And when you get enough minor irritations piled on top of each other and you’re having to manually transfer dozens of designs [because Spreadshirt didn’t make it possible for you to migrate your existing data!], it soon adds up to quite a big pile of annoyance.
Haaaa You’re welcome to give feedback here, this is all great. I ilke that you’re thorough!!! Way better than being vague. I’ll try to get some perspectives for you from our product management. Hopefully this week!
Our newsletters are emails? Or maybe I misunderstood what you meant. In these newsletters (that we send via email), we send these informations to all our users. Except the ones who have deliberately opted-out, because we can’t really send you emails if you’ve opted out. The only emails we can send in those cases are basically changes to T&C and stuff like that.
Those are the only newsletters we can force you to receive
I had to come back to this. Please don’t take this the wrong way - but if you consider our newsletters (and the information therein) “spam”, I’m not really sure which user category you’d fall in. If you consider the news about our product (=newsletters) spam, I think it would be safe to assume that you’re not interested in hearing about our product updates etc…?
Forcing you to hear about a topic you consider “spam” would be dubious and unethical, in my opinion. We only want to email the people who are interested in our content and information we provide! If you don’t want to be kept up to date regarding a service you use, I’m not sure you can complain when you’re not up to date regarding that service you use
If Spreadshirt’s newsletter only contains vital information about product updates and nothing else, then it must be a very rare creature indeed.
In my experience, most companies email newsletters exist solely for the purpose of blowing their own trumpet or trying to get me to part with more of my cash: "We did this…", “We won an award for that…”, “You can get 10% off this week…”, “We’ve got a sale coming up next month…”, “Don’t miss your chance to buy…” etc. with maybe once in a blue moon, some piece of information relevant to actually using the service.
And I still consider requiring users to subscribe to an email newsletter to hear about something as fundamental as the fact you’ve built an entirely new product designer platform behind the scenes to be a bit much.
Really, no-one thought to just put a link on the front page of the site saying “Do you want to try our new uploader?” for the benefit of people who don’t subscribe to the newsletter?
Doing it that way seems to work OK for all those other guys like YouTube, eBay, Flickr, etc.