We’re very excited to be kicking off 2023 with this important update. We’ve made a lot of progress over the past several months on Greenleaf ONE and want to share where we’re at, what new features you have access to as well as what’s in the works.
While our focus is on Greenleaf ONE (the standard distribution), some of these updates apply to non-standard sites managed by Greenleaf Advancement Partners as well.
Improved infrastructure and performance enhancements
We’ve spent the better part of two years testing various platforms and have settled on what we feel is the most stable, most performant solution. Nearly all Greenleaf ONE clients have been migrated to this new infrastructure and, if not, by the time you finish reading this blog post everyone will be moved.
What does this mean for you? Only that we have the infra dialed in, so that you can focus solely on your mission.
Improved bounce processing management
Bounce processing is central to effective mass mailings. Previously, we were relying on client specific email that required different configurations depending on each organization’s mail providers. This resulted in inconsistencies and a lot of time spent troubleshooting related issues.
To address this, we’ve consolidated all bounce processing to use dedicated “greenleaf.one” email accounts. This change is largely transparent to users, so there’s no visible impact. This improvement to bounce processing makes management and support far more efficient and reduces user headaches.
Support for email-to-activity
We’ve rolled out support for a powerful feature for organizations that use CiviCRM’s activities extensively. With email-to-activity enabled users can ‘Bcc’ a specific email address that will automatically be retrieved by CiviCRM and assigned as an activity to the individual contact record for the email recipient(s).
What’s more is that the system can optionally be configured to add individual contacts using this process should a contact record with the recipient email address not exist. This is not enabled by default, however if you would like this functionality, shoot us an email.
Additional remote snapshots are now online
We’re committed to the very best in security and backups. In addition to the current twice a day backups and 7 day archive, we’ve added monthly offsite backups to the mix. This ensures that your systems are archived over a longer period of time and that they’re accessible even in the extremely unlikely event of a catastrophic loss at our data centers. Like Andy Grove said, “only the paranoid survive.”
In the future, we’ll evaluate alternate schedules as well as the number of offsite snapshots we maintain in order to ensure that your systems are optimally backed up and secure.
Please note that remote backups are only for site and CRM systems and do not include any emails. Currently these are only available to WordPress and Joomla clients.
Improved Security & Monitoring
All standard Greenleaf ONE sites now include advanced, remote security monitoring and management as an additional layer of protection. We’re now able to remotely scan sites, monitor for intrusion and remotely apply changes in order to harden access and manage vulnerabilities. Likewise, we are proactively alerted when certain changes are triggered, affording us rapid response times.
In addition, we have implemented uptime monitoring on every site, utilizing 3 min interval checks to ensure that your systems are up and running at all times. We had this previously applied on a server-wide basis, which worked fine, but was not always 100% accurate for each individual site. With uptime monitoring applied to each and every site, we are alerted within seconds of any unplanned downtime.
Currently this is only available to WordPress and Joomla clients.
Custom Fields & Post Types
WordPress is a hugely popular CMS because of its simplicity and flexibility. If you’ve used it enough though you might have found a need for more than its default pages and posts. Enter custom data; specifically custom fields and custom post types.
Standard Greenleaf ONE sites now ship with two very powerful extensions that help you unlock the flexibility of custom fields and custom post types. Enjoy Advanced Custom Fields (pro) which provides a range of custom field types including repeater and relational fields. Combine it with CPT UI, an intuitive plugin packed with a lot of power that enables you to easily create custom post types.
Sound complicated? In practice, custom fields and post types are a great way to better organize your content and to capture structured data based on parameters such as content type, category, tag or even another custom field.
Please note that while custom data is now available to all clients on WordPress, only those on Greenleaf ONE can realize the full potential given the power and flexibility of the default page builder in Greenleaf ONE. Sites using other themes will not have the full benefit of dynamic content.
For clients where we manage your analytics, we’ve upgraded you to Google Analytics 4 and have streamlined script insertion by using Google Tag Manager. Our objective here is both to consolidate analytics based plugins for performance reasons as well as migrate you to the next version of Google Analytics. For clients that didn’t have any analytics running, we’ve gone ahead and set this up for you as well.
If you were already using Universal Google Analytics, don’t worry, we’re continuing to run it and Google Analytics 4 (GA4) in parallel. If you would like more information or what to do more with your analytics, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Speaking of WordPress extensions, we’ve completed a process of evaluating the current plugins we support as well as new ones we plan to add. Greenleaf ONE is not a static product and requires periodic review in order for it to stay high performing and optimal for nonprofits.
We are actively replacing plugins or removing unsupported plugins altogether in order to consolidate all systems to a standard implementation of Greenleaf ONE. If this makes you at all anxious, don’t worry. Most users will immediately notice a cleaner interface and general performance and stability improvements. Likewise, we are highly focused on replacing critical functionality with better plugins.
Advanced Page Builder Elements
We absolutely love the page builder that we ship in Greenleaf ONE. Out of the box, it has a truly impressive amount of design power and flexibility. In January, we installed several new plugins that provided advanced elements directly in the builder, including a powerful new Grid element, circle progression, teaser cards and more row layouts.
In addition, you can now build very powerful modal pop ups that are based on page builder elements. This allows you to create very appealing layouts and control their look and feel directly through the page builder. Likewise, you can trigger the pop ups in a variety of different ways ranging from page load to on-click mechanics. We’ll be launching a video tutorial on this shortly, so stay tuned.
Version 1 of the video library is live and accessible via the Greenleaf client portal. It ships with a few dozen video tutorials, and we’re adding more weekly. These tutorials are intended to be short, instructive videos that help dispell some of the complexities around both website and CRM management. At Greenleaf ONE, we’re committed to taking the complex and making it clear and simple for users to understand and ultimately to use.
We’re continuing to develop tutorials targeting key features and functionality within both WordPress and CiviCRM. Expect a few new videos each month as we continue to build out a comprehensive training library. Have something specific you would like us to cover? Send us an email.
That’s A Wrap
We cannot tell you how excited we are to see Greenleaf ONE taking shape. We’re bringing together some of the most impressive tools within the WordPress and CiviCRM ecosystems into one fully hosted and managed system.
At the same time we are open and honest about the fact that these systems are constantly moving and improving. Thankfully, we’re not simply hosting CiviCRM and updating WordPress; we’re consistently testing new features and functionality such that we can push it to each nonprofit using Greenleaf ONE.
We have an impressive offering in Greenleaf ONE and we’re starting to truly realize it. Each month, we’ll bring you improvements in the form of new features and capabilities, new tutorials, and new insights into how to use Greenleaf ONE to maximize your organization’s impact.