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  • InterVarsity Press Goes Live on Advantage

    Congratulations to InterVarsity Press who recently went live on Advantage!

    InterVarsity is a publisher of evangelical Christian books in Westmont, Illinois. They now use Advantage to fulfill more than 7,000 products across a wide array of subjects. IVP also implemented Cider as their ecommerce platform, and their new website (https://www.ivpress.com/) has been well received by IVP’s customers. Adding to the complexity of the project was the fact that they also implemented ONIX---an industry standard format in the book world. 

    Many people contributed over the course of the project, but the core team at InterVarsity, led by Tricia Koning, included Holly Shermer, Kim Brown, Bob Dunne, Luke Miller, Josh Bagley, Jon Boyd, Lorraine Caulton, David Burton and Dave Page.

    On the AdvantageCS …



  • Congratulations to EuroConsumers: Deco Proteste on a Successful Upgrade

    The Portuguese operation of EuroConsumers, Deco Proteste, recently went live on the 2017 release of Advantage. The cutover was impressively smooth, with 70 call center agents making intensive use of the system starting on the first day. Major features of the software upgrade included processing optimizations and agreement synchronization.

    Brigitte Huez and Jaak Creemers led the team for EuroConsumers, which included Filipe Lima, Carla Santos, Alexandra Machado, Annelies Schupp, Lien Gillis, Ana Borges, Gregório Umbelino, António Abrantes, Pedro Alípio, Ricardo Roque, Ludo Binnard, Raphael Previdi, Andy De Smedt, José Oliveira, Antonio Ramos, Diogo Alves, André Ramos, Edgar Moises, José Cruz, and Ana Santana.

    Stephanie Widrig spearheaded activities competently from the AdvantageCS …



  • PayPal in Advantage

    When was the last time you purchased something on a website that didn’t offer PayPal as a checkout payment option? OK, not every website does, but that number gets fewer every day. Customers love the convenience of storing their payment details in one centralized place, along with the “non-proliferation of information” security that this affords.

    Did you know that you can set up your Advantage-driven website to offer the PayPal payment option? Both the Advantage application and the Cider platform support the display, use, and storage of the elements of a PayPal transaction.

    Here’s how it works.

    In Advantage, a “Digital Wallet” payment type represents these various online payment options. PayPal is the first provider added under the Digital Wallet umbrella, and we will be adding …



  • CIO Roundtable Hones in on Key Concerns

    Technology executives from seven different Advantage client companies met in San Antonio on January 31st and February 1st prior to the Advantage Users Group conference, to identify and discuss their issues of concern in the current business environment.  On the first day, each of the seven executives shared their thoughts about topics of the greatest import to their organizations. The team from AdvantageCS then reviewed those concerns and grouped them into topics for the second day’s discussions.

    The subjects included a desire for fewer systems in their technological ecosystems, and for ones that integrate well with the other systems being used. A number of the participants commented that one of their greatest challenges is implementing, integrating, and maintaining the number of …



  • Yeeha! AUG Takes San Antonio by Storm

    Okay, maybe that’s a slight exaggeration, but the group did make its presence felt. Sixty-four Advantage users from 21 different companies descended on the Holiday Inn San Antonio Riverwalk for more than two days of meetings, presentations and networking spread over the first three days of February.

    Kicking off the conference on Wednesday afternoon was outgoing steering committee president Lesley Jones of Duke University Press who acted as emcee for the event, welcoming the attendees and outlining the schedule for the next 48 hours.

    First up to the presentation podium was Dan Heffernan, VP and chief product manager, who reported to the group on the product advancements made over the last year and what we have planned for the upcoming 12-18 months on the product roadmap and some new …



  • Paywalls and Advantage

    I often get questions from prospects or clients---especially daily or weekly publishers---about how a paywall could be managed in Advantage. These questions are more complicated than they may first appear, since Advantage is a customer-centric platform used mainly to manage paid subscriptions.  I recently met with a French startup company – Poool – which has developed a structured design, and a potential paywall solution for publishers using Advantage.

    The rise of paywalls

    A "paywall" is the term used for policies restricting access to content---partially or fully---by requiring a paid subscription at some point. It has been around since the early days of publisher websites, with the first paywall introduced in 1997 by the Wall Street Journal. The practice has expanded since then, …



  • The Amazing Advantage Users Group

    The Advantage Users Group (AUG) has been an active force for more than 20 years. Currently, the group elects a steering committee with revolving members from different client companies, and there is one standing member from AdvantageCS. The major task of the steering committee is to plan the annual user conference, which is usually in February.

    This year, it’s February 1 – 3 in San Antonio, Texas. More than five dozen Advantage users from 21 companies will be there---including 15 people from 4 companies in the UK and Europe. There will be user presentations, a vendor demonstration, roundtable discussions and presentations from various AdvantageCS staff. Plus, group entertainment and ample opportunities to socialize and network.

    Being the mind-readers that we are, we know that our …



  • Philippe van Mastrigt: Our Advantage in France

    AdvantageCS has a permanent presence in France, in the person of Philippe van Mastrigt, our director of European Operations. In the past decade, Philippe has become THE key player in our European expansion strategy, and is now engaged in most of our client relationships in Europe. Philippe is involved in marketing, sales, project management, client services, account management, and business development. He wears many hats in a single day---sometimes in a single hour!

    How did this come to be?

    This July will mark the 10-year anniversary of the Advantage go-live at Bayard Presse in Paris. Philippe was the Bayard project director on that massive project. Prior to that, he led Bayard’s world-wide search for a new subscription system—which led him to Advantage and our first meeting with …



  • Customer Partnership

    It used to be that customer service in the United States was legendary.  I remember flying on a UK airline with a stellar reputation years ago and being disappointed that they were unable to sit my wife and I next to each other, just because her flight had cost more and she was seated in the “premium economy” seats. This despite the fact that I had flown on that airline across the Atlantic 8 times in 8 weeks and there was plenty of room.  When I told the gentleman behind the counter that they had upgraded my seat on the way to the UK from the US, he said “Oh, that’s because you had the American customer service person helping you.  We’re horrible over here.”  I was speechless.  He was admitting that the American customer service agents have the flexibility on this UK airline to make such …



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