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CMS Magento for eCommerce projects — pros and cons, overview of features

Online sales are now growing more rapidly than ever before. The reasons for the rapid popularity of trading web resources lie both in the global situation and in the human factor. People quickly get used to comfort. Why go shopping and spend a lot of time on the way to them when you can go to the site and buy the desired product in a few clicks.

And here the business faces a key task - the presentation of products online. The development of an online store will help to effectively solve it. And nothing else. It is impossible to develop a successful business on the Internet without a selling web resource. You say: “So you can sell on social media. networks, Instagram and Facebook as commercial platforms are on the rise now. ” Yes, but not all products will find their target audience there. Social media can and should be used to popularize a brand, but it is unlikely that people will start looking for and buying solid fuel boilers, valves, car parts, or condensate collection and return stations on Instagram.

So, we have determined that an online store is needed to trade online. The second aspect is the choice of CMS for website development. The content management system is the fundamental work of the future online store. And in order to choose it correctly, you need to decide on the scope of the project. If you have a small online shop with 100-150 positions, it is quite possible to get by with a cloud builder or use WordPress in conjunction with WooCommerce. For large web resources, you need to choose something more powerful, reliable, functional. And in this article, we will take a look at CMS Magento. Having identified its pros and cons, having analyzed the reviews of developers and users about it, comparing it with other platforms, we will summarize whether it is profitable and advisable to use it for the development of e-Commerce projects.

What is Magento?

It is an open source engine built on top of the Zend Framework and written in PHP with MySQL. Its functioning is provided by the UNIX operating system. An online store on Magento captivates users with its attractiveness and simplicity, and developers - with its flexibility and functionality.

Let's supplement the answer to the question "Magento - what is it?" a little historical background. This CMS was developed in 2007 by Varien, later renamed Magento, and its release took place on March 31, 2008. In 2011, the system was bought by the eBay corporation. 5 years after its release, in February 2013, according to Alexa statistics, Magento has become the most popular platform for building online stores. In 2015, it was acquired by the investment company Permira. Now this system is wholly owned by the Adobe corporation. About 30% of the e-Commerce market uses it in their work.

разработка на маджентоThe creators of the engine are proud of its extensive functionality and customization flexibility. The other side of such a bright coin is the difficulty in mastering and implementing all the available options.

It is not easy for beginners to interact with Magento, since there is no ready-made visual constructor there, and the services of developers with a good skill are quite expensive. Alas, just taking and assembling an online store in a couple of days will not work: you have to figure it out, study manuals, look for extensions and finish the functionality with your own hands directly in the body of the code.

Is it worth making so much effort for the sake of the extensive functionality of Magento or are there other alternatives - we'll figure it out further.

On CMS Magento, development is carried out initially with an emphasis on e-commerce. This is also emphasized by the functionality of the engine, among which we note:

  • A wide range of marketing and analytics tools to increase sales and build audience loyalty, including mailing list management.

  • Adaptation to the requirements of popular search engines, friendliness to SEO-promotion.

  • A variety of payment and delivery modules for products purchased in the store, which are available both on a paid and free basis.

  • Multilingual, adaptability for mobile devices, multicurrency, availability of managing multiple resources from a single center.

  • Multifunctional buyer's personal account, extensive user options: rating, reviews, wishlists, favorites, etc.

  • Sorting clients into groups with the option of forming individual properties for each group.

  • Various options for displaying products, sorting by attributes, filters, blocks, types and characteristics.

  • Automatic generation of discounts, promotions, coupons, gift cards, flexible loyalty program for customers.

  • Опцию разграничения прав доступа к админ панели для сотрудников, управляющих интернет-магазином.

  • Detailed statistics, including reports on sales, reviews, customer carts, searches and starred, featured products.

It is worth mentioning, however, that Magento is a platform initially focused on Western commerce. This is reflected in both basic options and available modules. There are very few extensions in the official CMS catalog for the comfortable and efficient operation of an online store in Runet. To connect 1C, CRM, payment services and other e-commerce systems, you will have to use a Russified assembly, which, by the way, has nothing to do with the official one, except that it was developed on the basis of the existing open source, taking the CMS core and optimizing it for specifics runet.

Magento website - engine and modules price

интернет-магазин на magentoThis CMS is distributed in a free - Community Edition and a paid - Enterprise Edition version. The first is suitable for small projects and as an introduction to the engine. The number of free extensions for it is limited.

However, you can download and install modules for adding social networks, 1-click ordering, automatic sorting of identical products, callback and other solutions for efficient e-Commerce.

However, free modules for developing a website on Magento should be tested in advance, many of them, as experienced developers note, are not of good quality. Paid solutions are more stable and efficient. However, their use will have to spend at least $ 60-80.

The paid version of Enterprise Edition can be pre-tested on a demo account, after which you need to buy a license or refuse to develop an online store on Magento.

Magento website development - CMS advantages

One of the key advantages of this engine is open source and use on a free license. Thus, professional developers can create web resources with powerful functionality and unusual features. In addition, the advantages of creating an online store in Magento include:

  • A complete "box" version with a set of basic options for developing a commercial web platform.

  • Excellent adaptation of the system for search engine SEO promotion, indexing of pages in the background.

  • A wide selection of templates, modules, extensions, however, most of them are paid.

  • Continuous development, support from the creators, regular updates and no vulnerability to attacks and viruses.

  • Convenience for visitors and different levels of access for online store administrators.

  • Advanced analytics, integration with the Google Analytics system and convenient tools for managing prices, goods, users.

  • Varnish Cache is an innovative caching system that significantly speeds up page loading.

  • Multi-currency, support for various payment systems, including PayPal, the ability to make large purchases, up to 300 items.

  • A sufficient amount of information, manuals, video tutorials, guides on CMS in Russian.

Disadvantages of using Magento for an online store

As you know, any CMS has positive and negative sides. We have already considered the advantages of the engine, now we will describe its disadvantages:

  • Complicated installation and management procedure. For installation and configuration, you need to attract professional developers and experienced administrators, whose services are not cheap. It will be extremely difficult for a beginner or a specialist who does not have knowledge of this CMS to perform any operations.

  • Volumetric improvements. If you want a truly unique and inimitable online shop with individual settings, you will need to modify the Zend Framework, which Magento is based on.

  • Website development on CMS Magento should be carried out using a powerful hosting and high-performance server. On a simple, cheap host, the web resource will be slow.

  • Orientation to foreign users. In the original, the engine is in English, tailored for Western e-Commerce. For the CIS, however, there is a separate, paid Russified assembly.

  • Difficulties in customizing the design. Theme elements are located in several files located in different folders. As a result, webmasters have to first combine the data and then edit it.

After installing the engine, only one default site theme is available, which can only be used for informational purposes. Next, you need to choose a suitable design, upload it to the server and customize it for your goals. It is worth noting that there are few free templates for Magento, and the capabilities of the available ones do not allow developing web resources with wow-design.

Magento Review - Summing Up

If we analyze the pros and cons of the CMS, we will notice that they are expressed in approximately equal degree. Yes, in general, there are more positive aspects, but for the Runet, as we are told about Magento by the reviews and practical experience of specialists, this system is not the most convenient solution. Of course, the separation of code from design, quick and easy import of goods, the ability to manage several online stores from one admin panel and the absence of problems with adding modules can undoubtedly be considered the advantages of the engine.

On the other hand, only experienced programmers, whose services are considered one of the most expensive in the niche of website development, can properly set up and customize a CMS. Another blow to finances is paid modules and templates. With Magento, setting up and designing a website may well cost about $ 600-800, especially if you need to connect management, warehouse, accounting programs. And this price does not include developer services. Considering this, CMS Magento is advisable to recommend only for large-scale projects, marketplaces and online supermarkets with an assortment of 500,000 or more products. In other cases, it is rational to use, for example, OpenCart, create an online store where the specialists of our digital agency can with a guarantee of quality and the achievement of their goals in full.

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