Odoo is a flexible service which gives 1000’s of built-in enterprise apps, masking areas together with web site constructing, e-commerce, gross sales, advertising, stock, accounting, helpdesk and extra.
That is not as intimidating because it sounds. People, in addition to companies, can join single apps alone, and ignore every thing else. On this evaluate we will give attention to Odoo’s web site builder and a small variety of associated options, together with the Odoo weblog.
Odoo’s actual power, although, is the way in which you possibly can lengthen your preliminary app selection by integrating others as you want them. You may begin with an internet site, for example, then add the core e-commerce app, eBay, maybe invoicing, e mail advertising, no matter fits your necessities.
Pricing is definitely extra oriented to enterprise than residence customers. You may pay an preliminary price of 18 Euros (£16.37, $21.09) per consumer monthly, paid yearly; the web site builder is 16 Euros (£14.55, $18.75) monthly on prime of that, some related apps are free (running a blog), however many different apps are priced individually (e-commerce is eight Euros (£7.27, $9.38), transport integrations for DHL, FedEx, UPS and others are 24 Euros (£21.82, $28.13), the eBay app is 64 Euros (£58.19, $75).
Odoo’s huge library of add-on companies is interesting, although, which might be why the corporate now claims to have greater than three million customers. For those who could be enthusiastic about becoming a member of them, a free 15-day trial (no cost particulars required) provides you time to seek out out extra.
Launch Odoo’s free trial and the web site appears to counsel you are capable of set up a single app solely, however do not be postpone. You are capable of strive all apps with an infinite variety of customers, so any colleagues or mates can check the service with you.
We began by selecting the Web site Builder app for this evaluate, however different choices embody E-commerce, CRM, Level of Sale, Gross sales, eSign, Challenge, Stock, Manufacturing, Timesheets, Invoicing, Accounting, Mass Mailing, Occasions and Studio (app improvement.)
Make your choice and also you’re prompted to register along with your title, e mail handle, telephone quantity, firm title and measurement. Odoo would not want any cost particulars for the trial, so as soon as you have crammed within the kind, the corporate prompts your account in seconds and kick-starts the setup course of.
With the Web site Builder app, meaning selecting your theme. Odoo solely has 25, however they’re handsome, responsive, and properly introduced in Odoo’s theme browser. The total-screen previews do not simply offer you a common take a look at the theme’s feel and look, they act extra as a presentation for what it could actually do. For instance, the themes all have a Blocks web page which incorporates all the main content material blocks and exhibits how they’re introduced by this theme.
Odoo themes aren’t simply in regards to the visuals, both. They’re intelligently constructed utilizing Bootstrap, HTML5 and LESS/CSS for a cleaner construction, simple customization and all-round skilled outcomes.
Make your theme choice and it opens in Odoo’s internet console. That is typically quite simple and easy, however Odoo does its finest to make your life even simpler through the use of a wizard-type method to information you thru the preliminary setup steps: opening the editor, dragging and dropping in a canopy block (a background picture, headline, subtitle and paragraph of textual content), modifying the textual content and saving the outcomes if you’re achieved.
Whereas we have been making an attempt this out, an e mail arrived from Odoo asking us to substantiate our e mail handle and ‘activate our database.’ We tapped the hyperlink, obtained a ‘Success’ message and have been requested to ask colleagues to affix the trial. Present some names and e mail addresses right here and so they’ll obtain invites to create their very own free accounts, permitting them to additionally entry and work in your website.
Odoo initially opens and shows your web site as an energetic preview, somewhat than within the editor, and that is most likely a good selection. As an alternative of being instantly confronted with cluttered and widget-packed sidebars, the majority of the display screen is offered for viewing your website, and you may click on web page hyperlinks or change between cellular and desktop views with a click on.
Faucet the Edit button, left-click in an space the place you need so as to add content material, and a easy phrase processor-like toolbar seems with primary modifying instruments: textual content styling, alignment, lists, tables, and the flexibility so as to add photographs and recordsdata. This permits including easy content material instantly, simply as you’d in any textual content editor, with none of the same old hassles of dragging and dropping a number of widgets to create even essentially the most primary structure.
A left-hand sidebar permits you to add extra advanced content material blocks. These begin with primary web page constructions, together with titles, cowl blocks, varied preparations of textual content columns and pictures, sliders, characteristic blocks and extra.
Extra particular blocks embody timelines, characteristic grids, occasion lists, pricing and comparability tables, particular person and group profiles, FAQ lists, social media share buttons, and extra.
There are a small variety of modules you possibly can set up so as to add extra options, together with a kind builder, a Twitter Scroller for favourite tweets, e-newsletter subscriptions, a dialogue group and ‘native occasions’ checklist.
As widget picks go, Odoo cannot start to match the selection you will get with extra consumer-oriented web site builders resembling Wix and Weebly. However it’s fast and simple to make use of, and among the extra business-friendly blocks may prevent a variety of time.
No matter blocks you select could be dragged and dropped onto the web page as required, then moved as needed. You’ll be able to solely place them in accepted areas of the web page, however the editor highlights these as you drag the block, so it is simple to see what you are able to do.
Customizing blocks is a bit more troublesome than we anticipated. The primary problem could be discovering them. Most web site builders clearly spotlight the place blocks are on the web page, and sometimes show menus and toolbars of actions as your mouse hovers over them. Odoo would not spotlight blocks till you left-click, a possible trouble when some blocks aren’t at all times seen.
Left-clicking can choose content material inside a block, too, in addition to the block itself, which makes for one more complication. Relying the place you click on inside a Options block, for example, you may choose one of many columns, photographs or blocks of textual content, in addition to the block as a complete.
Even when you will have chosen a content material space, it is not at all times apparent what you are able to do with it. A Customise menu seems promising, however principally simply accommodates visible tweaks (background photographs, colours, animations and so forth.) Typically double-clicking an object permits you to do one thing helpful, maybe changing a picture. Typically, resembling with the Twitter Slider, there aren’t any setup choices in any respect, and you need to configure it within the Settings dialog earlier than you are able to do something. You may learn the way every management works, over time, however Odoo could be less complicated if there was a constant method to seeing every thing you are able to do, resembling right-clicking, or displaying all of your choices on the Customise menu.
Odoo’s media-handling options begin with its Picture widget, which regardless of its limits, has slightly extra performance than you may count on.
You’ll be able to add photographs to a server-based library, for example, or import photos from URLs, enabling them to be simply reused on different pages.
The Picture widget additionally doubles as a Video management, and instantly helps extra video sharing companies than simply about anybody else we have seen: YouTube, Instagram, Vimeo, DailyMotion, Vine and Youku. That is not all. After we tried a YouTube hyperlink, it gave us appreciable management over the video, together with choices to allow or disable autoplay and looping, and to cover or present the participant controls, fullscreen button and YouTube emblem.
The Picture widget additionally contains a Doc tab, which we hoped would permit us to, say, add a PDF for sharing by way of the location. Sadly, this appeared to be damaged, because the Doc tab solely requested us to “Add a picture”, and after we tried it with a PDF, did exactly nothing in any respect.
Elsewhere, the Picture is lacking just a few options you will see with most different web site builders. There isn’t any full editor, for example. No easy Crop or Rotate perform, and no integration with any type of inventory picture library, both business or free.
Odoo’s Slider is much more primary, sadly. You’ll be able to add and take away slides, or change the slide length, however there aren’t any different useful controls. You’ll be able to’t even handle the slides as a bunch, for instance displaying all of them and dragging and dropping to reorder them.
It is a thumbs-up for the video management, then, however in any other case Odoo delivers much less media performance than many of the competitors.
Running a blog and e-commerce
Odoo’s running a blog platform requires putting in a separate app earlier than it turns into accessible. That is simple sufficient, but it surely does spotlight a difficulty with Odoo’s app-based method. With different web site builders, additional instruments resembling blogs are at all times accessible in toolbars or menus, making them simple to find. Right here, customers may not even understand there’s a weblog except they go searching, or occur to note it within the Apps checklist.
Discover and set up the app and it provides a Weblog web page to your web site. Tapping New > Weblog Publish then opens a web page the place you possibly can create your first publish. It is all very simple – simply enter the title, subtitle and go to work – and makes use of the common web site builder editor, which implies you are capable of embody all the identical widgets and content material blocks as some other web page.
Odoo would not offer you any actual management over the publish, past coming into the content material. You’ll be able to’t manage posts into classes, for example (there’s apparently a Tag system, although it wasn’t clear how one can use it). There isn’t any solution to give a publish a customized URL, or schedule it to be robotically posted at some future time. And when it’s on-line, there is not any browser-based feedback system.
However on the plus aspect, it seems good, and is straightforward to make use of. Social sharing buttons (Twitter, Fb, LinkedIn, Google+) are included robotically, and there is feed assist thrown in.
Odoo’s e-commerce app works in a really comparable method. Putting in it equips your web site with a web page referred to as Store, and the New button good points a ‘New Product’ possibility the place you possibly can create a web page to explain no matter it’s you are promoting.
At first it would not appear to be there’s a lot else you are able to do, however that is solely as a result of Odoo hides most of its e-commerce energy within the Settings dialog, and turns it off by default. Customers who assume to look there’ll discover some very worthwhile instruments, together with the flexibility to create product variants (color, measurement), assist buyer wishlists, promote digital in addition to bodily content material, configure tax and transport guidelines, and extra.
It is a higher set of options than we anticipated, but it surely’s nonetheless not aggressive with the perfect of the of the competitors. Wix’s high-end VIP account provides you extra options and performance, a free area and 10 e mail advertising campaigns a month for under £16 ($20.62) a month, a fraction of what you will pay right here.
Odoo has loads of website-building quirks and oddities, so we have been trying ahead to studying some skilled recommendation on the Help web site. However after we obtained there, the support pages had exactly nothing on the modifying course of, and solely 5 articles in complete:
‘Learn how to use my very own area title’, ‘Learn how to translate my web site’, ‘Learn how to do Search Engine Optimization in Odoo’, ‘Learn how to observe your web site’s site visitors in Google Analytics’ and ‘Learn how to observe your web site site visitors out of your Odoo Dashboard.’
At the least this content material must be skilled and full, proper? Improper. The article on using your own domain name, for example, references the query of how one can allow SSL in your Odoo occasion. An honest internet host would offer you Let’s Encrypt certificates free of charge, will let you set them up from a management panel, provide fairly-priced certificates of its personal, possibly be capable to import and set up certificates you have purchased already. Odoo, in the meantime, simply says this: “To allow SSL, please use a third-party CDN service supplier resembling CloudFlare.com.” That might most likely work, but it surely’s essentially the most primary of all options, and never an excellent match for the extra skilled enterprise prospects Odoo is presumably making an attempt to draw.
For those who run into hassle then you possibly can flip to Odoo’s personal assist group. These can be found by way of stay chat and e mail, however solely 24/5 (Monday to Friday), and Odoo qualifies this by saying they solely “present useful assist and bug fixing companies on customary options.”
Which may be sufficient, but it surely nonetheless compares poorly with many extra consumer-oriented web site builders who present a succesful internet knowledgebase and 24/7 assist for a lot much less money.
Odoo’s web site builder is overpriced and underpowered, however its large library of built-in enterprise apps may allow you to with different duties.