If you are hosting an eCommerce website, you need to use the best platform to help with your business needs. In this article, we will talk about Magento. We’ve put together insightful information to get you started!
When it comes to choosing the best eCommerce platform, you will find a lot of options. However, you would be surprised to know that many people are not aware of these apps and how they work. Only 20% of eCommerce companies are using platforms like BigCommerce, Shopify, Volusion, etc. In this review, we will be talking about Magento.
Magento is a great eCommerce marketing platform that is known for expandability and flexibility. Most fast-growing and large businesses use Magento because you can add just about any feature to an online shopping platform.
Ecommerce platforms are usually categorized into three types – made for people with no programming skills, with little experience, and with lots of knowledge in the field. Regarding Magento, this platform is made for people with tremendous expertise in web development; however, people with intermediate skill and experience levels can handle Magento as well. Let us learn more about it in this review.
I. What Is Magento?
With more than 260,000 users on board, Magento is an eCommerce platform. The massive toolset and customization options make it an excellent choice for merchants looking to implement advanced technology on their shopping sites.
There are two forms of Magento software:
- Magento Open Source:Previously known as the Magento Community Edition, this tool can be downloaded for free and installed on your own server.
- Magento Commerce: Previously called Magento Enterprise Edition, this is a hosted service, and you do not have to install anything; however, it does have a price tag.
For this review, we will focus on the Magento Open Source. This is a robust platform that is fitted with powerful features and capabilities. While there is definitely a learning curve, there is no doubt that it is a great tool to have. It is an all-in-one solution for any eCommerce business idea.
II. Magento Features for Ecommerce Business Sites
As cited previously, Magento offers some impressive features for eCommerce business platforms. Let us look into some of these excellent tools:
Magento has worked hard to be more developer-friendly and highly customizable than other tools in this market. This means that you will be able to customize your eCommerce website design the way you like it.
2.2. Drag-And-Drop Capabilities
You can easily upload media like lookbooks, product pictures, videos, etc., via media storage. All you need to do is select the page section you are looking for and then drag the file over.
One of the first steps in learning how to start an eCommerce business is understanding how to plan ahead. Whether you are redesigning your platform, scheduling a future discount, or even want to check on some system updates, you can make use of the Magento preview function to see how your platform will look on a specific future day.
2.4. Analytics Insights
You need to have good insights into all data to manage your business and attract new customers. Magento is a platform that offers its users several levels of sales analytics, which covers almost every critical data point like customers, sales, inventory, etc., to various
degrees. You also have access to data like customer retention, which you would not find in most other dashboards.
2.5. Page Editing
While you may require some coding expertise to use Magento to the fullest, many features are pretty simple once you learn about them. Editing pages is not an exception. The layout is clean and resembles a word processor. You can easily add sections simply by dragging and dropping, and tapping on the styles.
2.6. Detailed and Multiple Permissions
Magento is particularly made for a large eCommerce store. Therefore, you may need to have more than a single user. Since not everyone needs to have permission to view everything, Magento allows you to create specific permissions. While most other tools have this feature, the Magento permission feature is on a deeper level – you will be provided with a specific list where you can assign/unassign abilities, roles, and actions.
If you are looking for multiple add-ons, you can find them in the Magneto Marketplace, previously known as Magento Connect. You will find a wide variety of free and paid options simply by integrating Magento 2.x and its upgrade. You can browse through thousands of accounting features, dynamic themes, payment plug-ins, and marketing extensions. You can create your free eCommerce website or opt for paid options based on what you are looking for.
2.8. Inventory Management and Multi-Source Ordering Feature
Keeping your inventory in check and sync is very important for any online business, especially if you have multiple purchase points like events, retail stores, online shopping, etc. Additionally, you would also need to know where the orders are placed and the available inventory. Magento’s inventory management tool is fitted with a wide range of powerful features that will allow you to control and manage your customers’ orders.
2.9. B2B Negotiation
The real eCommerce meaning is to deal with B2B and B2C sales capabilities. It’s one of the most important and helpful features that will allow business customers to negotiate offers, be assigned unique discounts, and request quotes.
III. Using Magento for eCommerce
If you are a beginner, using Magento may be quite a learning curve. If you have no experience with web development and plan on using your site by yourself, it is recommended that you do not use this eCommerce software. It is a tool for businesses that do not lack the budget. While some of the aspects are intuitive, there are many details and levels that you will have to learn.
As for professional developers, working with the Magento interface is reasonably straightforward. It has an easy and quick self-hosting setup; everything is neatly consolidated on the navigational menu like reports, sales, promotions, products, and
customers. Since it is a local installation, the Magento system will require FTP. However, this should not come up as a problem for developers.
The pricing of Magento is a bit complicated. Of course, you can download and install the basic version. However, if you plan on using your eCommerce website builder, you will have to upgrade to the paid version.
Simply by upgrading, you will be able to ramp up your business. You will have access to a wide range of features like having technical support, increased reporting, access to SEO, availability of hosting, etc. However, one downfall is that Magneto is quite an expensive option. In the case of the Magento Commerce Starter, the cheapest plan is $1,999 per month. However, it can also go as high as $3,999 per month for more technical assistance and features.
In terms of the pricing, it is pretty tricky. The free version starts at $0; however, it can quickly catapult to thousands of dollars per month based on the features you are looking for.
V. Support and Resources
Since Magento is a self-hosting platform, you will not find any dedicated support as such. However, you can rely on the massive community of users that provide a wide range of assistance. Whenever you run into trouble, you can quickly look for an answer at the Magento Forum.
You will also find a powerful search tool filled with user-generated content where you will find the questions and answers for all sorts of issues and doubts. There is a catch here – you will have to pay big money for the Magento eCommerce site to have a dedicated support team.
VI. Who Is Magento Platform Suited For?
Magento is a great platform for any eCommerce job if you know what you want to do. If you are running a small business and making your first move to this market, it is suggested that you look for more pocket-friendly and intuitive options for the job. However, if you have an established business and possess the required funding, you can easily use Magento and sculpt it based on your needs. Magento has proven that it is a perfect platform for any online store.
VII. Pros and Cons
Here are the pros and cons of Magento:
- Thanks to the open-source design, you can download Magento for free;
- The backend user interface is expansive and has a lot of features available;
- The feature set is quite impressive, with a lot of options to customize and extend;
- A great choice for growing companies;
- There are a lot of themes to adjust the template’s design.
- Learning to use Magento is not easy; you require at least a basic knowledge of coding;
- The support will only be available if you choose the Enterprise package;
- Getting support and help with broken elements is not easy;
- The backups, security, and hosting will be entirely on you.
VIII. Final Thoughts
If you are curious about understanding and learning more about this platform, it is recommended that you use the free version first. Apart from satisfying your curiosity, you will be able to understand if Magento is right for you. Despite the high price tag, Magento delivers its promises, which makes it one of the most popular options in the market today.
What’s your take on this? Would you add anything? Let us know in the comments!
IX. Author’s Bio
Emily Moore is an English & programming teacher with a passion for space and blogging. She believes that current exploration should be focused on preserving our planet’s resources. With satellites circling the orbit, it is easier to get relevant data on any environmental changes. This, in turn, should help people quickly address any challenges.