Using the CloudPublish administration system
CloudPublish has a variety of administration tools available for you to use. These are located at: http://admin.cloudpublish.co.uk
You will be issued with a single username and password to access this when you start to use CloudPublish. There are two types of user in this administration system:
- Everyone else
The only difference is that "administrator" has the ability to create other user accounts, and to turn ordinary accounts into Administrator accounts. Note that these accounts are only used for this CloudPublish administration system, and do not have any function or purpose elsewhere.
Although this same system is shared by all organisations that use CloudPublish to publish electronic resources, you will only ever be able to see users and manage resources connected to your own organisation.
The CloudPublish administration website provides the following areas:
- Search your catalogue
- Manage eBooks and other resources (e.g. change availability, view usage statistics)
- Create and manage Collections
- Download data relating to your catalogue (e.g. usage, metadata)
- Create and manage customer orders
- View transaction reports (a transaction is created when an order becomes a subscription)
- View customer subscriptions
- View and edit various CloudPublish settings
- Access an API test tool
- Download example API integration code
- Create and manage your CloudPublish administration users (only available to users with escalated privileges)
A general note about data tables
Several of the administration tools return results in a table. Usually, the results in these tables can be saved off as an Excel spreadsheet. Click the checkboxes on the right-hand side of the table and then the "Save" button which will appear after the first checkbox has been ticked.
The tools related to your catalogue should be reasonable self-explanatory. The main way to access details on an item is by the main Catalogue tool. This requires you to search for items in order to view details about them. There are various options for narrowing down a search, but simply entering an asterisk (*) into the search box will return everything. Note that there is also an "options" button which allows filtering of results by subject, imprint, language, and publication date.
The "Overview" area provides basic information on the number and type of items in the catalogue, and data on how many are processed, on sale, withdrawn, etc.
Once you have a list of items returned, click "Manage" to pull up further details on a specific item. The main function of this page is to display the metadata that CloudPublish has in the database. This is derived from the metadata you have uploaded (e.g. ONIX data) along with data extracted from the item itself (e.g. the number of pages). You can also use this page to view usage data for the item and withdraw the item from sale (or put it back on sale, if withdrawn).
Note that there are several ways to identify an item in your catalogue:
- ISBN: this is the best unique identifier, but is not necessarily applicable to journal items (which may use ISSN instead).
- DOI: this is a good identifier for external use, but is not used to locate items within CloudPublish.
- CloudPublish ID: this is the internal CloudPublish identifier. It is ideal for refering to an item when you know the type, but can lead to confusion if you do not specify the type (e.g. you might have an eBook with ID 500 and also an eJournal Issue with ID 500).
A "collection" is simply a group of items of the same type (eBook, eChapters, eJournal articles, or eJournal issues). They are usually used in order to group books by related subject, or to group a series of books together. We have provided a tool to populate a new collection based on Thema subject codes. Collections can then be used to subscribe customers to many books at once.
- Private / public: a simple flag on the collection. It can be interpreted in any way you like. For example, you might want to keep some collections hidden from public view.
- Note that only books that are available (i.e. processed) and on sale can be added to a collection.
- When creating or modifying a collection, you can enter ISBNs or CloudPublish IDs.
The Data area provides access to data downloads, namely:
- Metadata: the data held in the CloudPublish database for your catalogue
- Usage data: system-wide access logs of your catalogue
You can also download usage data for a single item by locating that item in the catalogue first, or by using the "Save" option on any table of results.
Orders, Transactions, Subscribers and Subscriptions
An order is an unprocessed order for items from a customer. It consists of items which have been (or are in the process of being) ordered by a customer.
A transaction is a processed order. It consists of items which have been purchased by a user, and which are therefore available to the user as subscriptions. Transactions are therefore records of processed orders. They do not contain financial information (this is the role of your ecommerce platform).
A subscriber is represented within CloudPublish by a simple customer_ref field. This will typically correspond to an identifier in your in-house customer management or ecommerce platform. Subscriptions are created alongside transactions,with one subscription per item within the transaction. For example, a transaction for 10 books will have 10 associated subscriptions.
[Your ecommerce cart → ] Order → Transaction(s) + Subscription(s)
Tools are provided to manage and/or view each of these via the administration system. Orders can be created here, but transactions and subscriptions must be created via the API, which you should integrate directly with your ecommerce or subscription management platform. Orders can be processed into subscriptions and corresponding transactions also via the API.
Note that you do not have to use Orders and Transactions. You can simply create Subscriptions (via the API) and never use the Order and Transaction features - they are optional. Subscriptions, however, are mandatory if you want to make your catalogue available to customers.
The Settings page displays several important account settings:
- SFTP Credentials: these are used to upload your source files and metadata to CloudPublish.
- Reading Settings: various default options related to DRM restrictions.
- Item Redirect: these are used to populate MARC data that you export (via the API). MARC data requires a URL for each item, and these settings allow CloudPublish to give a unique URL (on your website) for each item in the catalogue.
- API Access Credentials: a UID and Secret that are used to sign URLs with which you carry out actions via the API.
- Company Details: an editable list of attributes relating to your company. It is important to note that some of these settings are used to create bibliographic references to items in your catalogue. The pertinent settings are Publication Place, Publication Country, and MARC Country. You can find the correct MARC country abbreviation by consulting the list at this link.
API Test Tool and Examples
These tools allow you to practice with the API and view real results easily. Note that you will be operating on your live data! Full instructions are provided in the API documentation; the UID and Secret mentioned above (under "Settings") are required here.