Store Locator Plus Discrete Searches

The Experience add-on  for WordPress SLP or the Professional level Plan for MySLP SaaS provides a “search by city”, “search by state”, and “search by country” feature.   This search form element, when enabled, will build a drop down list based on the locations in your database.   This is meant to provide a hint to the user where your locations are.

The Advance level or basic SLP  search button  looks for locations closest  based on your other search form settings.  If your default radius is 100 miles and the user selects the state of Texas, the base plug-in will search for all locations within 100 miles of Google’s estimated “center of Texas”. With the Professional level plan  you can select certain settings to redirect the search selector and provide other options to direct or assist your site visitor.

Store Locator Plus INFO Plug-in Environment

Plug-in environment

We often have questions posted from users asking why something is or is not working. The information needed to be able to assist them properly and efficiently is shown under the SLP/INFO tab. It is called the Plugin environment.

What is meant by the  Plugin Environment.

The plugin environment shows the versions of Store Locator Plus, and any active SLP add-ons you have installed, as well as the WordPress version, php version, MYSQL , the domain name and other useful data specific to the WPSLP environment.

This information is required when posting in forums. You can also  find the latest release versions under your account Downloads List, and/or review the Versions under the Support tab on the WordPress Store Locator Plus  home site  to see if you have the most recent version of Store Locator Plus and the various add-on packs.

CSV Import Zip / Postal Codes formatting

Note: IMPORT requires  Power add-on for the stand alone WPSLP plugin  or if you are using MYSLP SaaS, the  Professional level or higher plan. 

When creating a CSV import file make sure the zip / postal code column is properly formatted as text so you do not lose leading zeros.

The column header for postal/zip codes is zip or sl_zip.

In the United States many northeastern postal codes start with zero.   Many sheets, Microsoft Excel in particular, LOVE to leave off the leading zero if you enter a zip code as 03907 and save as CSV.

Invalid Postal Codes
Invalid Postal Codes

In Excel, and many other apps, you can force a field where you are typing in numbers to be text by starting your entry with an apostrophe (‘).  Type ‘03907 when entering the data NOT 03907.

A good test to see if this is happening to you,  open your CSV file in Google Sheets and see what it looks like.  Does it look like the sheet above missing a zero and right aligned?

Another indicator that this column is set to a numeric type and not an text type is the data is on the RIGHT SIDE of the cell.  Text is left-justified (like sl_state) and numbers are right-justified.

Store Locator Plus 4.8 and above updates will disable Legacy add-ons

Legacy Add-ons

The   auto-update of WordPress v 4.8.2 and above required a major update to the WP Store Locator Plus free base plug-in resulting in the end of compatibility with the popular Pro Pack , Tagalong and other Legacy add-ons.  The Legacy add-ons are no longer supported nor maintained and have been retired over the past two years as announced in news posts, blogs , changelogs, mail campaigns  and social media.  If you are not sure if your add-on is considered Legacy, see the FAQ comparison featured to Legacy add-ons

Time to invest in your future

Some of our customers were surprised by the change and retirement of the  Legacy Add-ons.  We tried to give as much of a heads up as possible using news blogs,  content news to the home site and reached out using a  Mail Chimp campaign for those most likely effected.   Ultimately, there is no sure fire method to reach the thousands of customers who may have had these older add-ons installed.  If there is one thing we know, change in the technical genre is inevitable.  The SLP support team will always endeavor to help our customers transition to the new age.  We pledge they will see real value-added from updating their site and software . Please take a moment to review the multiple benefits of utilizing the newer Experience add-onPower add-on.

Although downgrading to an earlier version of SLP is an option, you may note that changes to the WordPress code and their security patches may disable features. Before making any changes to your site you should ensure you are backing up your site WP database and files.  It is very important to take this step before you have issues or worse, site crashes.    WordPress security has become more robust over the years.

For more information please see this important message from the author:

Store locator Plus  updates and retired add-ons

 

Import using WordPress Store Locator Plus Power add-on

This page /information does not apply to SLP SaaS. This information is provided for the SLP do it yourself plug-in only

WPSLP   Power add-on  uses the built-in file up-loader provided by WordPress Core instead of a custom file import script.   Look in the Media Library in WordPress.  Make sure your install has not disabled the default WordPress media up-loader.

NOTE: As of July 2018,  if you are using the WPSLP “do it yourself” plugin with Power add-on and you have not included the latitude and longitude and require geocoding , make sure you have a Google API account and have checked off the Maps and Geocoding APIs in your library.

What to look for when importing

Do you see the CSV file you just imported? If not then your site has disabled the WordPress media uploader.

If your file IS in the media library but never gets past  the offset “0” setting check to make sure your server  has not disabled the WordPress Cron .

WP CRON can be found under Forms WP environment

Check to see if your server is preventing the wp-cron.php from being triggered.

Check your import file in the media library by clicking on it.  It should show what the file size is and the current offset. The offset is where the background process is shown while importing the file.  If it is shown as “zero” then your WordPress Uploads directory for the media library has been set to non-standard restricted access meaning the background location import process is not allowed to open the file after it was uploaded.

Click on the file to see the file size and meta data

Legacy Add-ons not compatible with SLP version 4.8 and higher

 Legacy Add-ons

If you want to keep the legacy add-ons, do not upgrade the base plug-in to version 4.7 or above.   All individual legacy add-ons have been phased out and replaced over the past 2  plus years due to security patches, coding changes, WP updates, maintenance overhead and inefficiencies that were no longer viable to support.  To find the match to your Legacy Add-ons,  see FAQ: Legacy versus featured add-on

Please follow the SLP news feeds for important information about updates.

Even if you received a notice in your WordPress admin panel that an update to your base plug-in is available, you do not need to click the update button.  All version updates to SLP are optional.  We do not auto-update like WordPress does.

If  you already updated (most likely if you are reading this) and now try to roll back SLP to earlier version to o retain the Legacy add-on compatibility.

Note:  Due to the security patches required by Word Press  you may also need to rollback WordPress.  Before attempting to roll back or downgrade WordPress or any plugins , make sure you have a recent back-up of your site.  Do not attempt this on a live site.

The SLP author does not recommend rolling back versions of any software or WP.   This is time consuming and messy, requires technical savvy,  and you will miss  important security patches.     If you are confident that you know what is entailed and are willing to take the risk;  it is still recommended to use a back-up service such as  Vault Press or Jet Pack. 

P.S. If you do not want the headache of maintaining back-ups , updating, obtaining a new Google API, you may want to consider moving over to a My SLP plan.   See  MYSLP SAAS

 

Search Address Auto-complete setting

Feature to have the address to auto-complete the zip code based on your location database is available with the Premier/Enterprise or the Experience add-on

When 2 or more characters are typed in the address input box,  input suggestions based on location data will appear.

  • None (default) – do not suggest address input.
  • Zipcode – suggest matching zip codes.
  • With Premier or SLP SaaS Enterprise you can also have a zip code drop down selector

If the formatting of the autocomplete is not  the way you would like it to appear, reset the Search Form Style under appearance layout.

Locator Styling determines how the auto-complete drop down box will appear on your page.

How to delete multiple tags under locations

With the Power add-on you will find additional Bulk Actions under the Locations/Manage panel.  There is a  drop down menu under the Bulk actions tab that can be utilized to remove many, some or all tags associated with the location data.  Check off which locations you want to remove the tags from, or you may check off all and select the filter to “Apply to all”

Bulk Action with Power allows you to remove tags