Certain businesses employ dynamic pricing strategies on their products, to stay competitive in the marketplace. This means that the price of a product they sell is liable to change, from several times a day, to even several times an hour.
If this sounds like your business, you’ll be happy to know that it is possible to have dynamic prices in your iPaper Flipbooks, that align with your web shop, too!
This guide will show you how to get dynamic pricing set up for your Flipbooks.
🔰 Before you get started
To be able to show dynamic prices in your Flipbooks, you’ll need to have the development capabilities to build, and run an engine that can take prices from your database, and convert them into images, based on a unique product identifier.
💡 A product identifier is an element that allows you to identify every product in your database. This is commonly also referred to as a stock-keeping unit, or SKU.
These images will be hosted on a Content Delivery Network (CDN), that we can send a pull request to every time a Flipbook loads and shows a price. The CDN should also be capable of handling large numbers of load requests, as every time a catalog spread loads for one user, iPaper will request all the images on the page, from your CDN.
As such, your image service will have to be optimized to handle an exceptionally high load of requests, without any lag or delay, especially when the catalog is very popular.
Marking up your PDFs for dynamic prices
In the PDF from which you will create your Flipbook, you’ll want to tag the areas where you want to display your dynamic prices with PDF hyperlinks.
💡 Unsure about how to tag hyperlinks in your Flipbook PDFs? We’ve got a guide to help you! Read it here:
For the best results, make sure to create elongated, oversized hyperlink tags with the same aspect ratio. Because all prices are different, we recommend creating hyperlink tags that are long enough to hold even your longest price, without the price text being 'squashed'.
Therefore, all your hyperlink tags must be the same elongated aspect ratio, allowing for the varying length of your prices.
And the price images generated and supplied by your CDN must then all be the same size, but with a varying amount of transparent area, depending on the varying length of the price text.
💡 An image's aspect ratio describes the width and height of an image, in relation to each other.
Some examples of different aspect ratios.
For example, an image that is 400px wide, and 300px tall has an aspect ratio of 4:3. An image that is 1200px wide and 900px tall, also has the same aspect ratio, as this is defined by the relation between the height, and width of both images.
In the example above, you can see that the vase set has a smaller price, and has been marked up with a 2:1 aspect ratio. The lamp, however, has a larger price, consisting of 4 characters, and is marked up in a 3:1 aspect ratio. The price images that are dynamically generated will match their respective aspect ratios.
However, if you were to swap the prices of these two items, you'd see that the larger price tag has now been 'squashed' into the different aspect ratio. The smaller price, hasn't been squashed as both images have the same vertical ratio. The result is that the smaller price is centered in the large placeholder.
Therefore: as mention above, to combat the complexity of tagging the individual prices differently. We have found that the best way to tag PDFs for dynamic prices, is to place hyperlink tags that are long enough to contain even your longest possible price text. All of these can vary in size, bust must have the same aspect ratio.
The price images generated and supplied by your CDN must then all be the same size, but with a varying amount of transparent area. You then have the option of deciding, whether to left, right or center align your price text within the images provided by your service.
Each hyperlink you create, you’ll want to point to the matching product identifier in your database, for the product in question.
When iPaper creates your Flipbook from a hyperlinked PDF, we read the product identifier in the hyperlink, and automatically place it in a URL that matches the location where the correct price image is hosted on your server. That way, we receive optimized images (SVG or PNG) of the current price for that product identifier and show them in the correct place, within your Flipbook.
With this set up, your Flipbooks will display dynamic prices on your products, meaning that you can stay as competitive in your Flipbook catalogs as you are on your website, or in-store!
⚠️ Please note, there is no standardized way to provide product price images, and the generation and hosting of price images is not offered by iPaper.
As such, we recommend you develop a solution that best works for your back-end, or book a free session with our Customer Care team to discuss what solution would work best for you.