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5 Reasons to Select Magento for Your Small Business

5 Reasons to Select Magento for Your Small Business

Have you been keeping track of the leading eCommerce platforms that have emerged in recent years for businesses?

purchasing-689442_640

If yes, then Magento is sure to figure in that list of popular eCommerce solutions that have made lives easier for businesses to go online with their products or services.

Magento has been known to help businesses seamlessly build an online store across any category, customise it as per their changing needs, attract more customers and generate better sales.

This open source Content Management System (CMS) has been constantly evolving with new solutions and tools, due to which it has been trusted and utilised by more than 240,000 businesses across the globe.

This number is estimated to rise by leaps and bounds in the coming years as the demand for eCommerce increases.

So let’s check out the advantages offered by Magento, especially for small businesses, and compare it to other eCommerce platforms or CMSs.

1. A Customisable Open Source Solution

Magento (Community Edition) is open source and can be downloaded for free. Once installed, you are not restricted to the standard templates, but you can customise it as per the dynamic requirements of your business.

Open Source

Image credit: Flickr

You can boost your eCommerce store with several new features and functionalities by installing Magento extensions that are available at the Magento Connect marketplace.

For small businesses, this customising option is pretty handy since the eCommerce needs of these businesses may be pretty specific.

2. Strong Community Support

To enjoy a smooth experience with any new tool or CMS, like Magento, that you haven’t used before, you will always feel the need to have reliable and readily available support.

Customer Support

Since Magento is open source, it has an extremely large and knowledgeable community of developers who constantly work on it to ensure it stays updated and secure. If you are stuck anywhere or face any issues while handling the Magento tool, sound technical help is available to you at an instant.

Such support is ideal for small businesses which may not always have enough expertise with Magento to handle the issues. They can easily rely on this Magento community support to get solutions for several issues.

Most of the problems that you may face, while using Magento for the first time, may already have been discussed with solutions at the community forum sites.

3. One-Stop Shop

The best thing about Magento is that you can manage it from a single platform and do not need different solutions for different purposes.

eCommerce

Image credit: Flickr

You can manage all customer records, billing activities, store inventory, and so on from one place (the admin dashboard). You can create multiple online stores from a single backend CMS.

All your eCommerce apps can be handled from a single database, which further increases your company’s efficiency. This makes it easier for small businesses, as they will need fewer resources to manage and monitor their online store.

4. Support for Mobile Shopping Experience

The world is witnessing an increasing trend towards online shopping for mobile phones. This has led many eCommerce businesses to switch their focus towards developing their online store apps or making their eCommerce websites mobile friendly.

Mobile Shopping

The fact that the Magento platform offers multiple HTML5 capabilities ensures that your customers will have a superior mobile shopping experience.

5. Higher Flexibility and Scalability

With an open system architecture, the Magento experts in your company can create uniquely designed user experiences for various types of access devices.

You can have a fully flexible eCommerce workflow to meet the different business requirements of your company. In addition, this platform offers a higher scalability option at any point of time.

This means that your business can grow seamlessly with flexible eCommerce-based modifications and enhancements possible through Magento.

Comparison with Other Popular CMS

If you were asked about the most popular CMS in the world today, you would probably answer “WordPress”. There is no doubt about the overall popularity of WordPress, but it is not designed specifically for eCommerce.

To handle eCommerce requirements, you need to use WooCommerce along with WordPress. Similarly, if you want to design eCommerce stores using another popular CMS, like Drupal, you need to use Drupal Commerce along with it.

Yet, Magento is a platform specifically created for eCommerce requirements. It possesses countless eCommerce features and functionalities that give it a clear edge over other content management systems supporting eCommerce.

Magento is quite SEO friendly and you get the preloaded ability to give meta titles and descriptions as soon as you add products to your online store. You don’t need to install a separate SEO extension or plugin. Some other preloaded SEO features include sitemaps, URL rewrites and layered navigation.

For WordPress, you need to specifically download an SEO plugin, like Yoast, for SEO-related features.

A simple comparison table according to a Tomrobertshaw.net report , for the top eCommerce software in use across the globe is illustrated below:

Magento

It is clear that Magento leads the way for eCommerce software with a market share of almost 26%, followed by WooCommerce which is way behind with only 9.7% of the market share.

Now that you know Magento is the best eCommerce platform currently, you may be wondering about the ways through which you can opt for a suitable Magento development service provider.

You can do that by checking out the Magento community forums which are full of experienced Magento developers or you can find a suitable one via LinkedIn or Crunchbase as well.

You can also check out who has extensive experience in developing online stores using Magento and contact them to get the relevant services for your business.

So, what are you waiting for? Get started with Magento and grow your online business!

A Detailed Comparison of Magento Editions – Enterprise vs. Community

A Detailed Comparison of Magento Editions – Enterprise vs. Community

First launched in 2008, Magento is arguably one of the most popular and widely used eCommerce platforms that powers hundreds of thousands of online stores, and can be downloaded for free.

eCommerce

Tailored according to your specific eCommerce needs, this open source platform offers maximum performance and scalability, with advanced out-of-the-box capabilities, packed in a bundle of multiple editions two of which are Magento Enterprise and Magento Community.

Aside from the fact that one is free and the other is not, both Magento editions seem equally beneficial. Some businesses, however, prefer one to the other.

So, what is the difference between the two, what features does one have, that the other doesn’t, and how they perform against each other on different parameters is what we’ll discuss in detail today.

The purpose of this comparison is to ascertain which version is suitable for your organisation depending on what stage it is in, and future requirements.

Size of the Business

The first and perhaps the most important differentiator between the two Magento editions are the size and scale of the business.

Consider the amount of sales you make every month, the size of the inventory, the number of SKUs, and the market growth your business is experiencing.

With faster indexing process, speedy checkout feature, ability to handle large number of products, flexibility and better support for international business, Magento Enterprise is a real game changer in this scenario if you have lots of products or inventory.

Modular Code Base

On a core, technical level, though, those of you who are not afraid to get their hands dirty building and maintaining a website, Magento Community might be the best fit.

For those who need more control over the environment and need to leverage extensions and custom coding to meet your customer’s expectations, Magento Community has an amazing array of features that include code level access to files.

Unlike Enterprise or other Magento platforms, the Community’s code runs on your web server, and that ensures that your sensitive data and information stay secure and inaccessible to external agents.

Performance Enhancement

When it comes to performance enhancement, Magento Enterprise is an obvious winner. Every upgrade in the system is making this platform exponentially better and faster at re-indexing.

Performance

Unlike Magento Community that could take around 10 to 20 minutes to process a newly added product, Enterprise does it almost instantly.

Budget and Investment

If you are looking to start with an eCommerce solution on a limited budget, then Magento Community is your best bet.

Budget

Image credit: Flickr

It is relatively easier to set up and flexible for web developers and designers to work with. With a wide assortment of solutions within the edition and the ability to customise certain features without any cost, Magento Community is just the right solution for small-sized businesses and startups.

Even if some amount of investment is required in future development or modules, it will be far less than the amount of money required to develop an eCommerce system from scratch.

However, for those of you who need something more robust and unorthodox, and if money is not a problem and you want a more professional looking eCommerce solution from the start, then without a doubt, Magento Enterprise will win the race.

Comparison Chart

Here’s a comparison chart that we’ve designed to determine the right fit for your business with a sharp focus on the key differentiating elements of both the editions.

Magento Compare

While all the current solutions that Magento is offering are beneficial for businesses, every edition is designed to meet certain business needs.

Magento Community may very well be a good starting point with little or no investment, but for a long-term solution for a larger business with higher online sales, Magento Enterprise offers reliable professional support and is the right way to go.

It is important to keep this factor in mind that Magento is a large eCommerce system that is not well suited for every kind of business. It is best to obtain an expert’s advice on choosing the right system for your business to reap the right results.

So, before you delve into the world of Magento and begin to explore your options, don’t forget to request an unbiased professional opinion on the choice you wish to make.

Is your organisation currently using an eCommerce solution? What were the major limitations that made you consider Magento eCommerce solutions? Let us know in the comments below, and thanks for reading!

 

An in-Depth Look at Magento Mobile Solutions

An in-Depth Look at Magento Mobile Solutions

magento-mobile
The use of mobile apps and mobile websites on portable devices, from smartphones to tablets, is on the rise. In tandem is the tremendous growth of mobile commerce, often referred to as mCommerce. Many retailers recognise the enormous economic opportunity online, but are without an appropriate strategy to capture a significant portion of those mCommerce transactions.

Fortunately, eCommerce industry leader Magento now offers a number of mobile solutions. With the help of a trusted and capable eCommerce Development partner, along with some amazing plug-ins and tools out there, it is now easy to customise these solutions. That means it is now easier for you to fit in perfectly in your customers’ mobile life style in a way just as you want. Magento is owned by eBay, and is the preferred eCommerce and mCommerce solution for more than 240,000 merchants worldwide.

What Is Magento Mobile?

Magento has risen rapidly in popularity to establish itself as the third most popular eCommerce solution in the UK, United States and Canada.

Magento mobile solutions allow retailers to provide their customers with a comprehensive online shopping experience. In fact, Magento responsive designs represent 34 per cent of all responsive eCommerce websites in the Alexa 1M.

Why Is mCommerce Important?

To answer this question, we would rather have the numbers talk. Here are some quick facts that are no less than eye openers while we talk about mCommerce:

  • The number of global smartphone users will approach 2 billion in 2015
  • Mobile phone penetration has climbed to a global average of 93 per cent
  • mCommerce sales accounts for around a whopping $58.5 billion in annual

The choice for retailers who wish to remain competitive is not whether to adopt a mCommerce strategy; rather, it is whether or not to remain solvent.

Magento Responsive Design

For many retailers with an existing eCommerce portal, a responsive website design is the obvious mCommerce solution. Simply put, a Magento responsive design means that your existing website will display perfectly on devices of every screen size. This includes devices with smaller screens, such as smartphones and tablets – the very tools used to perform mCommerce transactions.

Switching your eCommerce website to a Magento responsive design means:

  • The talented team of Magento experts will complete the entire project for you.
  • Your existing eCommerce portal will continue to function with minimal downtime, if any.
  • Your layout, video and images will begin scaling according to the screen size of each user, but the functionality of your existing eCommerce portal will not be impacted.

Dedicated Magento Mobile Development

Many eCommerce powerhouses, including Amazon, choose to develop a mobile application independent of their website. This provides consumers an alternate way to make purchases from their mobile devices.

While most online shoppers prefer a mobile browsing experience over an additional download, the development of an application is still with significant merit.

As in the previous example, Magento mobile offers comprehensive solutions that will allow you to easily develop a mobile application to complement your existing website.

Thanks to an assortment of APIs built in to the platform, an experienced web development company can now help you develop bespoke Magento mobile apps with a seamless and tight integration to your existing eCommerce portal.

The most important thing to remember with Magento mobile apps development is to ensure that your branding and key features carry over to your application accordingly.

Which Is the Right Solution?

Whether you choose a mobile-first or a web-first strategy for mCommerce, the other option cannot simply be ignored. The second option becomes a value add for your business.

In most cases, a responsive website is the logical choice for disseminating product information, while an application is useful for strengthening engagement – such as offering review functionality. That being said, those who are serious about capitalising on the rise in mCommerce need both a Magento responsive design and Magento mobile development.

Conclusion

In order to remain effective and relevant, your eCommerce website must be fully responsive. If you do not have a mobile application already, there is a substantial portion of the market your business is forfeiting.

Magento mobile solutions have overtaken Oracle as the top choice for businesses in several markets, featuring stunning visual merchandising effects and functionality.

Take advantage of this comprehensive platform to meet the changing needs of consumers. Magento makes scaling your mCommerce enterprise into the future not only possible, but streamlined. Now is the time when you should start looking for the right eCommerce development partner that can help you leverage mCommerce in the most fruitful way.

After all, mCommerce is the future of how consumers will shop online. The question is whether your business will adapt or be left behind.