Magento Review: Key Points You Need to Know About the Platform
Magento is one of the most popular e-commerce platforms. With its help, merchants are able to create small to enterprise-size online stores and customize them with additional functionality.
Magento CMS is made on PHP and MySQL and has open-source code, which means that it can be modified and adapted to your own needs at any time. At the moment, the platform is owned by Adobe.
How User-Friendly is Magento?
Magento was originally developed to provide e-commerce services. The developers position it as the easiest to learn, but newcomers still have to study its features and understand its functionality.
So, the non-tech-savvy merchants will most probably need the assistance of a Magento development company that has a decent experience with the platform and can offer high-quality services in the development and customizing it to the client’s needs.
Adding new categories, pages, and products, as well as editing them, is done directly in the admin panel. This is where extensions are managed, templates are set up, and much more.
If we consider this approach from a technical point of view, the absence of a visual editor on the product pages eliminates unnecessary scripts, which often interfere with the website’s performance.
Having studied the main Magento functionality, the platform becomes easy to manage, since there is literally nothing superfluous here that could affect important performance indicators.
Admin Panel Design
The Magento admin panel is made in a classic style. Upon logging in, the user is taken to the Dashboard section, where all the summary information is collected.
Here, you can view the number of purchases, determine the products that are sold more often, find out the average bill, and determine the most popular requests made by your customers.
The main menu is on the left and is divided into several categories:
Dashboard – store summary.
Catalog – divided into sub-items “Categories” and “Products”. Here you can add new products and categories, as well as adjust them.
Customers – information about site visitors.
Content – here you can configure the visual part of the online store. You can customize the appearance of individual pages, as well as enable or disable individual widgets, etc.
Stores – a particularly useful section for those who run multiple stores (e.g. multilingual).
System – a tab containing the main system settings.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Magento provides standard tools for website search engine optimization:
Adjusting the titles and descriptions
Changing the visibility status of pages
Setting up a robots.txt file
Adding a sitemap
Using the canonical link meta tag for categories and products
If the store is large, then it is useful to use the automatic metadata generation feature. Magento provides such an opportunity out of the box.
Best Magento Hosting
A Magento store requires good and reliable hosting – with powerful servers, constant availability, and scalability. Magento hosting providers like Cloudways, Hostinger, A2 Hosting, and others, offer several types of hosting for you to choose from (shared hosting, VPS hosting, and dedicated hosting).
The costs will depend on what type of hosting you need. For a small Magento store, virtual hosting capabilities will be enough. If you need more freedom to configure your server, opt for VPS hosting. Enterprise-size stores need a dedicated server.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Magento
The main advantages of Magento are the following:
Improved caching system. Varnish Cache speeds up page loading
Improvement of indexing processes. Indexing is performed in the background, which does not affect the website speed
Full integration with Google Analytics
Advanced user management. You can configure customer groups and set restrictions for some groups
Support of multiple payment systems
The ability to add up to 300 items to the cart
High performance, even at the time of high traffic loads
Device-friendliness and more
If we talk about the disadvantages, then you should consider the following points:
Complex installation process. To install Magento, most likely, you will have to address professional Magento developers. Not being enough tech-savvy, you won’t manage to set up and configure the CMS.
Customizations and improvements. If you want to make your store truly individual and unique, then you will either need to learn programming or hire specialists.
The need for high-quality hosting. Cheap hosting services do not suit Magento. Moreover, such services can endanger your online store and your customer’s personal data.
Magento Design Opportunities
Despite the fact that Magento is free to use, merchants have to buy theme templates or pay for the development of a custom design.
Out-of-the-box, Magento comes with a Luma theme which is good for familiarizing yourself with the platform, and nothing more. Of course, you can find free custom Magento theme templates, however, to customize them, you need to have professional skills in PHP, HTML, and CSS.
Magento templates, in their turn, have a structure that is different from other CMSs. the module responsible for site design consists of three components:
Site construction layouts.
PHP/HTML templates that determine the appearance of individual elements.
Skins that form the design of the site (colors, fonts, order of elements, etc).
That is, while in most CMSs a corresponding file is attached to a specific page block, in Magento the block has to be edited simultaneously in several files located in different directories.
Magento CMS is a powerful system that will help you to create an online store with an incredible assortment of goods and attract customers from all over the world.
Hundreds of freelance developers and Magento development companies are constantly developing extensions and modules made to increase the possibilities of an online store and add up a ton of helpful features.
So, if you want to create an online store that will provide you with a maximum number of tools to constantly improve and scale your business, Magento is exactly what you need.
About the Author:
Olha Fedchenko | Content Manager & SEO Analyst
Olha is a Content Manager and SEO Analyst at Whidegroup. Starting as a Content Writer for software and web development topics in 2011, Olha has always been guided by a desire to thoroughly inspect every field of study before writing a single word.
She found her passion in e-commerce and delighted in expanding her expertise in web development, analytics, and SEO for small to medium e-commerce businesses.