What is it?
Magento (not to be confused with T-Mo’s Magenta) is widely used open-source e-commerce platform that came to dominate the commercial parts of the internet in the last few years. Community edition of Magento is a powerful and flexible solution that maintains its awesome price tag of ($0) free. And on top of that, it is being actively maintained and expanded further every single day, which explains why it is one of the top ecosystems on the web today.
Is it right for my business?
Magento is an extremely capable, scalable platform that is almost infinitely configurable. Multi-currency, multi-time zone, multi-server platform can help you jump start your online presence and begin serving your customers in no time. In addition, a very robust marketplace of Magento plugins ensures that there is almost always a plugin that does what you need, integrates into what you need and makes your online store look and function exactly how you envision it. Finally, there are thousands of Magento developers all over the world ready to customize your platform even further, and take your site to that perfect customer experience your clients will surely appreciate. All of these things combined is why businesses all over the world look at Magento first and foremost when it comes to internet commerce.
What types of businesses use Magento?
Magento is infinitely scalable and easily customizable with thousands of paid templates ranging from $1000’s to $0 (free). It covers the entire spectrum of customers, no one is too small or too large! It is very suitable for small businesses where the owner wants a great, mobile ready B2C site with a small to no maintenance fee and for a very little price tag. It is also popular with medium size businesses that work with small design and development shops for adjustment, configuration, and deployment. These would be not only existing retailers looking to expand into the internet, but also e-commerce first companies that do most of their sales via internet. Finally, it is deployed by many industry “whales” – large enterprises with massive online presence that sell millions and billions dollars worth of product each year. They look for a secure, scalable B2B or B2C platform that will deliver their look and their product while being able to handle any traffic.
Bullet points please…
I know, I love the bullet points myself. Here is the basic list of those advantages that have made Magento platform what it is today.
- Community version of Magento is completely free
- Extremely flexible and almost infinitely configurable platform
- Thousands of modules and templates on a very robust marketplace
- Large amount of information for developers and configurators in the public domain in many languages
- Modular nature of the platform makes it very scalable
- Very intuitive back-end interface and many familiar, yet beautiful front end interfaces
- Available Magento plugins allow for integration into many CRM and ERP systems
- Very capable API for expanding integration- suitable for those unique situations where you have to push your integration beyond what comes out of the box
- Thousands of developers all over the world
- Security updates are released proactively and there are many tools that can test your Magento for any security
- Massive existing install base (over 230,000 businesses already run Magento )
For online retailers from Samsung and Ford to Hypermicro it is critical to have a completely integrated solution. And while large corporations like Samsung surely have huge and capable in-house development teams, it is not always the case with small and medium size retailers and B2B businesses. This is why robust Magento plugins often make all of the difference in the world.
For many it is absolutely critical to have a full integration into a 3rd party marketplaces like Amazon, eBay, BestBuy, and others as well as real time link to tracking companies and shippers like UPS, FedEx USPS, Canada Post and many more. Others look for a support for the complete product life cycle, order & payment taking, order status and shipment tracking, support for customer returns, credit memos, and replacement order status and tracking. Yet other times it is an open source nature of the platform combined with robust community of designers, developers, administrators, and consultants that make businesses choose Magento. Whatever it is – do your research, analyze pros and cons, and make your decision wisely!