Why Magento should be your eCommerce platform of Choice
So you are eying the multi-billion-dollar online industry and have decided to take your brick and mortar business online. That’s a great news as no business, large or small, can today survive without being online.
The first step for you is to decide what platform to choose. This possibly the hardest part of going online as the decision you make now will affect your business in the long term. The right decision will ensure that you have a smooth ride towards achieving your online success. On the other hand, if you choose the wrong platform it can greatly inhibit your growth plans and your business in the future.
There are many options available in the market today for taking your business Online. They include Open Source solutions like Magento, Prestashop and WooCommerce or hosted solutions such as BigCommerce, Volusion and Shopify.
Hosted Solutions Vs Open Source Solutions
If you are a small home based retailer and are expecting only a few orders (less than 20 a month) and you do not need flexibility in the future and have no big growth plans, then a hosted solution like shopify or Bigcommerce or open source solution like Woocommerce will do the job. These solutions, although do not offer ability to scale and huge flexibility, they still are amongst the most cost effective solution for your basic eCommerce website. These solutions require minimal setup and help you launch your business online very quickly.
For a brick and mortar store looking to move online or a retailer expecting to receive a lot of orders every month and looking to run various promotional activities, an open source solution like Magneto is a much better solution. These solutions are totally customisable and offer you the ability to develop your eCommerce store with the functionality that suits your business and not limited to what is offered out of the box.
When choosing a platform for your eCommerce website development, our recommendation is always Magento.
Magento is currently the biggest player when it comes to ecommerce websites. Magento was first developed in 2007. The back-end of Magento platform is developed using open source technologies like PHP and MySQL. These platforms are highly customisable, easy to learn and user-friendly.
Magento Web development should be your platform of choice, if you are serious about your online business and want to compete against the biggest players in the market and succeed.
What makes Magento Popular? It’s a no Brainer!
Some of the biggest names in ecommerce have chosen Magento as the platform of choice for their eCommerce website. Some of the reason what makes Magento tick are discussed below.
The Open Source Advantage
In addition to the open source version of Magento (commonly known as Magento Community Edition or Magento CE) available in the market, there is Magento Enterprise edition also available. The Magento Enterprise edition is hugely expensive and requires a massive annual subscription. However most of the features available in the Enterprise edition are also available in Magento Community Edition which is completely free.
Being a cut down version of Enterprise Edition, Magento Community Edition is immensely robust. In essence you get the features and benefits of an enterprise level platform in an open source solution. In addition, new updates, security patches and versions are released at regular intervals helping you keep your Magento website up-to-date and secure.
Created for eCommerce
Unlike many other open source platforms that were developed as a Content Management System originally and later had an eCommerce module developed, Magento was originally developed for eCommerce. Even in it most basic form (without any customisation), Magento offers most of the features a standard eCommerce business needs. Magento websites developed with the most basic features available in the community edition will still be more advanced when compared to many websites developed using other platforms.
Magento is backed and owned by eBay. This literally ensures that Magento will continue to evolve and supported. Ebay has been constantly investing in Magneto and have just released Magento 2.0, which has a lot many new features, a much robust back-end and a user-friendly interface.
Community & Support
Magento being a popular ecommerce platform, is greatly supported by a large number of developers and users. Following the philosophy of Open source platforms, Magento specialists around the world constantly run, support or participate in running blogs and forums. You will find that a large group of Magento experts are available and eager to help you succeed. The idea behind it is very simple. The larger the user base is, the better it is for the Magento web developers or business owners to find a solution to their problems.
In addition to the big community, you will also be supported by large number of tutorials and help videos available online to help you learn the platform and succeed.
When it comes to Magento website design, you will find that you will have access to thousands of themes that you can purchase for less than $100. With so many themes available in the market, chances are that you will find a theme that is perfect for your industry. Although we do not recommend that you use these themes out of the box, but your Magento development company will be able to customise this theme and ensure that your store looks unique and stands out amongst the competition.
As Magento became popular, it offered an opportunity to developers around the world to offer new features and functionality to make Magento more powerful. This has meant that thousands of new extensions (plug-ins) have been developed and offered to store owners to easily extend the functionality of their store. Store owners can now offer features that would normally take tens of thousands of dollars to develop by spending only a couple of hundred dollars.
Some common extensions that every Magento eCommerce store needs include:
- One Page Checkout
- WordPress Integration for blogging
- Accounting Integration
- SEO extensions
- Shopping Feed extensions
- Shipping Tracking & Delivery Notification
- Upsell & Cross Sell
The Magento marketplace is huge and doesn’t matter how unique your requirement is, you will find an extension that is close to your requirement.
If you can’t find an extension that exactly meets your requirement, your Magento specialist can customise your store and develop a custom extension for you.
For any eCommerce business to succeed, it is very important that it ranks well on search engines like Yahoo and msn and organically bring relevant traffic to the website.
For any website to be found online, it is very important that it is built with SEO in mind.
By choosing Magento development, you have ensured that you have chosen a platform that is Search Engine Friendly. You can customise your website URL’s to be SEO friendly, ensure that all your products and pages have relevant meta-data or add multi-layered navigation.
In addition to SEO capabilities, it is also important that any e-commerce website has advanced marketing capabilities. With third party extensions and tools available in the market for Magento, you can regularly communicate with your target audience and offer them promotions and discounts.
You can integrate your store with newsletter marketing softwares like Mailchimp, infusionsoft and constant contact.
With Google Analytics you can easily track and understand the behaviour of your website visitors when they come to your website. This can then help you update/modify your website accordingly to improve conversions.
Magento also work seamlessly with Customer relations management tools like salesforce and Zoho CRM. This means that you can seamlessly transfer your customer data to your CRM and use the powerful capabilities of these tools to communicate with your customers and prospects.
Magento – Dominant ecommerce Platform
Magento is currently used by some of the premium retailers across the world to sell online. Although many of them are using the enterprise edition, it is easy to see why they have chosen magento as their platform of choice.
Some examples of Magento stores are provided below.
Magento as you have seen is currently the most popular open source platform in the world and it is easy to see why. The flexibility, security, extensibility, robustness and rich features have made this platform the darling of the web development companies worldwide.
If you are looking to develop an online store that gives you a chance to succeed and compete against some of the biggest names in your industry, our advice is to choose Magento as your platform.
With the wide range of inbuilt features and extensions available, you can make your business look big online and offer functionality to your customers that previously uses to cost tens of thousands of dollars.
It is important that you find a good Magento development company that can become partners in your online journey and can provide Magento specialists to develop a robust online store.