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API Guide

Multi-Storefront API Guide

Cart and Checkout

When your integration creates a cart or checkout, make sure it specifies the channel_id for the storefront or other channel the shopper is using.

If the cart is associated with the shopper's channel and the relationship between a storefront's channel and site has been properly configured using the REST Management API's sites feature, both cart redirect URLs and embedded checkout URLs will refer the shopper to the correct site.

If your application interacts with shoppers, you can use the GraphQL Storefront API's carts and checkout features to access cart and checkout data for shoppers in real time.

Categories

Catalog API - Category trees and categories reference

Previously, a store had a collection of categories that were organized in a tree structure. This collection of categories has been abstracted from the store and converted into the store's first category tree. You can create multiple category trees, each of which you can assign to a storefront or other sales channel.

categories-diagram.webp

To access the category structure used by a particular storefront, you must first identify which tree is tied to that storefront channel. You can do so by sending a request to the Get all category trees endpoint. Include the channel_id:in query parameter, which accepts one or more channel IDs as a comma-separated list.

Example request: Get category tree for channel 3
GET https://api.bigcommerce.com/stores/{{STORE_HASH}}/v3/catalog/trees?channel_id:in=3
X-Auth-Token: {{ACCESS_TOKEN}}
Accept: application/json

Currently, a tree may only be assigned to a maximum of one channel. BigCommerce's roadmap includes relaxing this restriction in the future so that several channels can share a common tree.

If your application interacts with shoppers, you may be able to use the GraphQL Storefront API to get the active category tree for shopper's channel in real time.

Customers

REST Management API - Customers reference

Each customer account has an origin_channel_id that references the channel on which it was created. Email addresses must be unique within each channel, rather than within the store. This means that a single email address can exist two (or more) times in one store: associated with two Customer IDs on two different channels.

Orders

REST Management API - V2 orders reference REST Management API - V3 orders transactions reference

For applications that deal with order management, it is now crucial to include the channel_id as part of the order object. Among other benefits, linking each order to a channel will make it easier to sort, categorize, and filter orders by the storefront or other sales channel in which they were placed. You will also avoid accidentally having an order associated with the default channel, which may confuse shoppers by exposing store configuration details that do not apply to their channel.

Similarly, if your application is shopper-facing and deals with orders, it's important to provide the appropriate channel-specific information to shoppers. For example, if your app sends order confirmation emails to customers, you'll need to ensure that any store information, URLs, and links in your email reflect the correct storefront or other sales channel. For more details, see the use case considerations at the end of Managing store configuration.

Price lists

REST Management API - Price list assignments reference

Previously, price lists assignments were made with the REST Management API's V2 customer groups endpoints. Price lists could only be assigned to customer groups.

The REST Management API's V3 price list assignments endpoints let you assign price lists to channels, customer groups, or the combination of a channel and customer group. Only one price list can apply at any given time, so BigCommerce determines which price list to apply using the following logic:

  • If a price list assignment is found that matches both the shopper's active channel AND their current customer group, it will be used; otherwise,
  • If a price list assignment is found that both does not specify a channel AND matches the shopper's current customer group, it will be used; otherwise,
  • If a price list assignment is found that both matches the shopper's current channel AND does not specify a customer group, it will be used; otherwise,
  • The catalog default pricing will be used.

If your implementation uses price lists to manage pricing, we recommend that you start using the price list assignments endpoints so that your app fully understands and can reason about the pricing state for the customers, orders, and channels on the merchant's store.

If your use case is primarily concerned with what the price will be for a given shopper, consider using the GraphQL Storefront API to fetch data about the shopper's view in real time.

Products

Catalog API - Channel assignments reference

The cardinal rule of multi-channel sales

Products must be explicitly assigned to a channel to be sold on that channel.

It is important to understand the difference between assigning a product to a category and assigning a product to a channel. Adding a product to a category allows you to merchandise the product and develop a store's taxonomy of products, categories, and category trees, but it does not make the product available within a channel. A product must be explicitly assigned to a channel to be sold on that channel. For native Stencil storefronts, if a product is not assigned to the storefront's channel, it will be hidden from that channel's storefront.

products-diagram.webp

If your app provides merchants with a sales channel, such as an integration with a third-party marketplace, we recommend that you check the merchant's catalog to determine their existing channel assignments. This will help your app understand and communicate with the merchant about which products the integration's channel is currently permitted to offer for sale. For extended product information relevant to your channel, use the Get channel listings endpoint.

If your application interacts with shoppers, you can use the GraphQL Storefront API to get the correct product availability and data for a given shopper in real time.

The nuances of channel assignments

Use the Catalog API's channel assignments feature to create and manage product assignments for storefronts and other sales channels.

A product assigned to a storefront channel can be sold on that channel, discovered in search, and accessed by direct link, unless that storefront's settings otherwise disable direct links.

Removing a product from a channel will make that product unavailable on the given channel. The product will remain categorized, but it will not be available using category filters, search, or direct link.

Removing a product from a category does not remove it from the channel. Use the Delete product channel assignments endpoint to revoke channel assignments.

Removing a product from one or all of a channel's categories without revoking the channel assignment will remove the product from the category views and filters, but shoppers will still be able to access the product by search or direct link. This may be useful for sales campaigns that send shoppers a direct link to purchase a specific product.

Storefront and Content

Scripts

Scripts are associated with a particular site. Any scripts that were created previously have been assigned to the default site, the ID of which is 1000 for each merchant store. If you do not supply a site_id when you create a script, it will be assigned to the default site. To support multi-storefront stores, you should explicitly assign scripts to the site on which you intended them to render. If you want a particular script to show up on several sites, you must create that script separately on each site.

scripts-diagram.webp

REST Management API - Scripts reference

From a UX perspective, you may wish to make it clear to merchants who are setting up your app that they must explicitly select one or more storefront sites on which to install your app's storefront functionality. You should also provide ways to remove your scripts from each site and install your scripts on any new sites the merchant creates in the future.

Pages

Pages are associated with a particular site. Any pages that were created previously have been assigned to the default site, the ID of which is 1000 for each merchant store.

pages-diagram.webp

REST Content API - Pages reference

The REST Content pages endpoints service multi-storefront use cases and provide several of the efficiency benefits that V3 APIs offer versus their V2 equivalents. The REST Content API's pages endpoints have site_id as a required parameter.

If your application reads pages-related data, be sure to filter by the appropriate site_id when dealing with a particular site. Similarly, when writing new pages, be sure to provide the correct site_id.

Widgets

Widget templates, widgets, and widget placements are all associated with a particular channel. Any previously existing widget-related objects are assigned to the default channel, which is the first channel that was created on the store.

Going forward, we recommend that you use the query parameters on each REST Content API widgets endpoint to pass the channel_id of the storefront for which you are managing content. This will restrict the scope of your requests to the target channel. When you create new widget objects, be sure to include the correct channel_id.

301 Redirects

redirects-diagram.webp

REST Management API - Redirects reference

Redirects are associated with a particular site. Any redirects that were created previously have been assigned to the default site, the ID of which is 1000 for each merchant store.

The REST Management API's redirects feature services multi-storefront use cases and provides several of the efficiency benefits that V3 APIs offer versus their V2 equivalents. The redirects endpoints have site_id as a required parameter.

If your application reads redirects-related data, be sure to filter by the appropriate site_id when dealing with a particular site. Similarly, when writing new redirects, be sure to provide the correct site_id.

Themes

Previously, the Activate store theme endpoint accepted a variation_id and a which value. This has changed.

Because we now support installing different themes and/or theme configurations for each storefront, you must supply a variation_id and configuration_id for the theme configuration you want to apply, as well as a site_id or channel_id for the target storefront. The which value is not supported for multi-storefront installations.

Locating the configuration ID

The configuration_id is the same as a configuration's uuid, returned in the Get theme configuration response body.

themes-diagram.webp

REST Content API - Themes reference

To understand which theme is active for a particular site, you can check the Get active theme endpoint.

Themes themselves remain "global" to the store, but each theme now exposes a list of configuration settings. Each theme has a default configuration, but you can use the store control panel's Page Builder feature to apply a different configuration to a particular storefront.

Themes feature roadmap

Our Themes feature roadmap includes the following:

  • Exposing an endpoint to create a new theme configuration
  • Adding a download_url query parameter to the Get all themes endpoint

Currently, you can use the Download a theme endpoint to download a theme. This will create a download job.

Because each theme can define its own configuration, the response from the Get theme configurations endpoint may differ for each theme. Valid configurations match the theme's schema. You can use the Validate theme configurations endpoint to validate a potential configuration against the theme's schema.

Subscribers

REST Management API - Subscribers reference

Each subscriber now has an origin_channel_id property that identifies the channel on which the subscriber consented to receive a newsletter. When not supplied, the origin_channel_id will default to 1. To comply with electronic consent and privacy regulations, we recommend that your implementation specify the origin_channel_id for every subscriber.

If your application deals with subscribers, be sure to check the origin_channel_id to understand exactly where the subscriber signed up. If you are integrating with an email marketing system, you may want to allow the merchant to pick which email lists will be used for which channels.

Subscriber webhooks roadmap

Our roadmap includes augmenting subscriber webhooks with an origin_channel_id, so that new subscriptions can be added to the email list that corresponds with the subscriber's channel.

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