Recent Updates and Enhancements

At Main Street Sites we are constantly updating and improving our service.  Here are some of our recent updates and enhancements:


 10/12/2020  Class Catalog Layout Improvements

Updates were made to the class catalog layout. This layout is used by customers who would like to display their schedule in a vertical format. The new options include:

  • Multiple columns: classes in the catalog can display in 1-4 columns
  • Borders: classes can have a border placed around each class, including a highlight border that displays when the mouse hovers over the class
  • Alignment: each elment of the class can have its own aligment (left, center, right)
  • Background color: classes can have a background color
  • Custom CSS: additional custom formatting can be applied (ask support for help if needed)

Let us know if you'd like to explore using this layout.

 10/12/2020  Portal Button Formatting

New options have been added for formatting buttons in the customer portal.  When you edit your portal buttons at Website > Community > Portal > Layout, you can now specify the following for each button:

  • Font
  • Background color
  • Mouse hover background color

These options can be used to group buttons together by series/collection/etc.

 10/1/2020  New Calendar options

New options for how the calendar page filters your classes can be found at Website > Built-in Pages > Calendar > Settings.

 10/1/2020  Category support

User emails and user messages can now be sorted into categories for your convenience.

 10/1/2020  Appointment Calendar Colors

Teachers can now have custom colors for their class meetings in the appointment calendar.  The new color settings are on the individual teacher records at Setup > General > Teachers > Additional Information. 

 10/1/2020  Reminder preferences

You can now disable automated reminders for certain customers if needed.  This can be done by finding the customer account at Manage > Accounts, then going to the Settings tab for a particular account.  Reminders can be disabled by type (appointment reminders, class meeting reminders, etc.).   

Customers can also do this themselves by logging in to their accounts and going to the Preferences tab on their My Account page.

 10/1/2020  Sending notifications to all contacts for an account

Support has been added for sending selected notifictions to all contacts on a given account.  By default notifications go only to the primary contact on the account.

To activate this option, find a particular customer notification at Communications > Settings > Notification Templates and select the option to,  "Send this notification to all contacts for a given account when possible."

For example, if you were to turn this option on for class meeting reminders, reminders would be sent to all available contacts on each customer account.

 8/19/2020  Referral Marketing

New automated referral marketing features are available!  Your customers can have their own referral code to share with their friends or a special link to your site.

If you wish you can reward your referring customers with a credit for successful referrals.  You can also provide a discount for the newly referred customers if you'd like (or a credit on future enrollments, drop-ins or store orders). 

Referral awards can be automatic or can use an approval process.  You decide who is eligible for a referrals -- for example, if a new customer has had demos, drop-ins or was previously enrolled, they can be ineligible for referrals.

Please see an overview of this new feature and how to add referral marketing to your website for more details.

 8/17/2020  Expanded support for order credits

Open credits on customer accounts no longer need to be less than the cost of the item being purchased. When the credit is larger than the item being purchased, the credit will be split into 2 credits.  One will be the amount needed for the order and the remainder will be left on the original credit.  A note will be added to each credit to let you know the history of how the credit was used in customer orders.

For example: 

  • assume a customer has a credit for $100 that can be used in online registration orders.
  • If the customer enrolls in a class for $25, a new credit for $25 will be created and used on the order.
  • The original credit will be reduced to the remaining amount of $75. 
  • Both credits will have notes showing how and when they were updated.

In addition, credits can now be used in store orders and drop-in orders as well as enrollment orders.  New settings have been added to the credit form to allow you to indicate how a credit can be used.  These new options are supported in the Ad Hoc Fee Generator when used to create credits as well.

 6/19/2020  New options for contact mailing addresses
We've added new features to help you confirm customer mailing addresses.  This should be helpful if you are sending out class materials in the mail.
New tokens are available to show the current contact mailing address in your emails
These new email tokens allow you to include the current contact address in your user emails, user messages and email notifications.
For example, to show customers their current mailing address in an enrollment confirmation, you could add this to the email (using the "inline" option):
Please note that your current mailing address is %contact_address_inline%
In the email it would look like this:
Please note that your current mailing address is 1 Main Street,  Anytown MA 02134
The %contact_address_block% shows the address over two separate lines, like this:
Please note that you current mailing address is the following:

1 Main Street
Anytown MA 02134
Another new token allows customers to update their addresses without needing to login
To help customers update their mailing addresses we have added a token to add an address update link to your emails.  This new token will create a special link to the MyAccount page. The link will not not require them to login. They will only be able to update their mailing address. 
This new token is:  %account_contact_info_update_link%
An example using this token would be:   To update your address please click here  %account_contact_info_update_link%
 6/18/2020  Class Enrollment Reminders
Main Street Sites now supports automated reminders for class enrollments by email and SMS text.  Reminders can be sent out for the first class meeting for a class or for all class meetings.  The reminder notifications will include the new "notification content" from the class (if you are using the new field for Zoom links, etc.).
The new reminder feature can be enabled by going to Setup > Settings > Class Settings. It is very similar to the other reminder features for make-ups, demos and drop-ins.
Once active, the feature can be turned on for a given class on the Additional Info tab of the class (or by going to Manage > Classes > Update All Classes > Update Settings).
When classes are copied or rolled forward they will keep their current reminder setting.  Otherwise, new classes will default to having this feature turned off.  A default value for your new classes can be set at the class type level by going to Setup > General > Class Types.  There is a new "Class meeting enrollment reminder default" option there for this purpose.
As always, you can customize your reminder notifications by going to Communications > Settings > Notification Templates
 6/1/2020  Showing class links in My Account > Schedule

If you are using the class notification content to share your online class link and password info, you can now also show that information on the Schedule tab of your My Account page.

The setting to turn on this behavior is on the Website > Community > Portal > Settings tab.  You can choose to share the location and class notification content. The content can be shown in a popup or inline.

Note: to take advantage of this feature you'll need to share the "My Account" page with your customers (typically as an option in your menu).  They will also need to create a username and password so they can log in.


Also - coming soon: automated reminders for individual class meetings.  These will also include the class notification content.

 5/27/2020  User Email Engagement Features

We have added a new way to reduce costs on sending user emails.  Anyone who hasn't been opening your emails for the last year will now automatically be filtered out when you are sending a user email.  You'll see this on the Send Emails page near the recipient count.  This optional filter can reduce your user email costs considerably. It can also increase the likelihood that your emails end up in your customers' inboxes. Vendors like Google pay attention to whether or not people are opening your emails when deciding if you belong in the inbox. 

You can still choose to uncheck the "unengaged contacts" filter if you wish to.  You can also see the underlying data for all of your contacts by going to Communications > Contacts and selecting the "User Email Engagement Mode" option.

Note: any customer who places an order, enrolls in a class, etc. is automatically considered engaged whether or not they are opening your emails.  All new customers and contacts are automatically considered engaged too.

 4/22/2020  Product Notification Content

Products in the store now support additional content that will be included in order confirmation emails.  To enter notification content for products, go to Setup > Store > Products and edit your products. 

 4/22/2020  New Send Message topics

New topics have been added to the Send Message interface to better support online classes.

 4/1/2020  Using Portal Features with Online Classes

If you are offering online classes we have added some features that should be helpful.  Note: although we have added more content-related security features, we have not added live streaming or video hosting. You will still need to use Zoom, YouTube, Vimeo, Facebook Live, etc. However, in most cases the appropriate video players or links can be added to your secured MSS pages.


Using the Main Street Sites Portal

The Portal feature is available if you have a Premium website or Back Office.

Any of your customers with a username and password can access the MSS portal. The portal landing page has a set of optional buttons. It is typically used for things like "My Account", "Make-Up Scheduler," "Make a Payment," etc.

You can add as many buttons to the portal as you like. You can add pages to hold materials, videos and links for particular classes. Additional buttons can be added to your portal layout at Website > Community > Portal > Layout. You'll need to add new pages to your Page Vault (at Website > Vaults > Page Vault) first, then you can reference them when you add buttons to your portal layout. Here is an example of a portal page:

Note: if you'd rather not use the portal landing page, you can also add secure page vault pages directly to your menu or link to them directly in emails, etc. They can be secured in either case. See below for how to secure your vault pages!


Securing Page Vault Pages using Access Level

Every person who creates an account on your website has an access level. It will be level 1 by default. You can set your page vault pages to require a higher access level if you'd like to prevent them from seeing certain pages by default. There are five portal access levels available for this purpose (1-5).

The access level for a given page vault page is on its settings tab at Website > Vaults > Page Vault > Settings.

You can give any account contact its own access level by opening the account at Manage > Accounts and editing the contact. For example, you could set certain families to level 2 manually. Then only those families could access any of your pages set to require level 2 access rights.

Important tip: To automatically assign a higher access level to your enrolled families, you can go to Setup > Settings > Account Settings and turn on the "Security level used for accounts with current enrollments" option. This will automatically assign a higher access level to your enrolled families, but only while they are enrolled in your classes. Here's what those settings would look like:


Securing Page Vault Pages by Class or Class Type

You can also limit access to a page in the page vault to people enrolled in a given class or class type. This is done by going to the settings tab of the page at Website > Vaults > Page Vault > Settings and selecting the option for enrolled account access.

Note: this only works if your customers are able to log in to your website. That lets us check their enrollments before showing them the page.

Securing Page Vault Pages by Access Code

If your customers do not typically have their own usernames and passwords, you can secure your page vault pages with a simple access code. This can be any secret code you wish to share with your families. The access code for a given page is set on the settings tab in Website > Vaults > Page Vault when editing a page.


Adding Online Class Access Info to your Class Notifications

If you have online access information you'd like to add to each class, this can now be done by editing the class at Manage > Classes > Classes and going to the Notes and Description tab. There is a new section there for adding "Notification Content" for the class. This content will be sent out in any notification for the class. This includes order confirmations, enrollment confirmations, make-up, demo and drop-in notifications (including reminders).

This option is intended to help people who want to distribute links for particular classes only to enrolled families.


We hope these security features will help you get your classes online during this difficult time. Please don't hesitate to ask for help with any of these items discussed here.

 3/30/2020  Music Together Online Images

The Music Together Online images have been added to the image repository in the "Music Together (Collections)" folder.

To access the online image repository, click on the "Add Image" toolbar button when editing a page or email. Then use the "Browse Server" button to see all of the images in a grid.  Double-click an image from the grid to select it.

 1/22/2020  Demo Account Support

Demos now support being attached directly to accounts.  This support appears in several places:

  • You can now give customers the option to create an account and login before creating a demo.  The option to continue without creating an account and to hide these new options entirely is supported as well.  By default these options are hidden.
  • Accounts can be created automatically when demos are scheduled by your customers.  This replaces the prior support for creating contacts automatically from new demos.
  • When you enter a demo on the back end, you can now select an existing account or enter the demo information manually as before.
  • For any demo not already associated with an account, you can use an option in the More... button on the demo to create an account from the demo automatically.
  • Demo-related user queries have been updated to show related account information as needed.


See the new settings for demos by going to Setup > Make Up, Demo & Drop-in Settings > Demo Settings,

 1/22/2020  Account Shortcut Links

New shortcut links have been added to the account context menus.  When editing an account, you can now use links for adding a make-up, demo or drop-in for that account.

 1/22/2020  Global Registration Coupons

Support has been added to online registration for global coupons.  This feature allows you to create coupons that can apply to any semester.

To add global coupons, select the "<Global Coupons>" price set in Setup > Settings > Registration Pricing.

 1/22/2020  Drop-in Coupons

Drop-ins now support coupons.  To enter coupons for drop-ins, go to Setup > Make-Ups, Demos & Drop-ins > Drop-in Pricing and edit your drop-in price set.  Coupons can be added on the new "Coupons" tab.

 1/22/2020  Tasks

Popup notes were added for tasks.  When you review your tasks from Manage > Activity > Tasks, any notes for the tasks can be reviewed using the popup icon in the grid.

 1/22/2020  Day of Week Filter

The option to filter classes by the day of the week has been added to named layouts.  This is in addition to the standard optional filters for location, teacher and class type.

To add the day of the week filter to your existing class schedule layout, go to Website > Settings > Named Layouts, open your class schedule layout and update the filter options.

 1/22/2020  Teacher Schedule Report

The teacher schedule report now shows all holidays that affect the teacher's schedule.  When appropriate, a notes section will be added to the report to indicate any exceptions for the standard schedule for the displayed classes.  For example, a moved or cancelled class meeting will be indicated in the notes section.  Any class meetings that are not affected by the listed holidays will also be called out.

 1/22/2020  Online Attendance/Attendance Sheets

Enhancements were made to online attendance and the attendance sheet report

  • Row numbers can now be displayed for each enrollment in online attendance
  • Drop-in notes can now be included using a new option in the "include" section
  • Teacher contact information will included where appropriate
  • Make-ups, demos and drop-ins will now be sorted to match the sorting of the enrollments