Magento is the most popular free eCommerce platform on the market. It is a feature-rich, professional open-source eCommerce solution that offers merchants complete flexibility and control over the look, content, and functionality of their online store. There are over 200,000 eCommerce websites are built with magento. The administration interface provides advanced marketing, search engine optimisation and catalogue-management tools to control the look, content and functionality of every retailer’s unique business requirements. This 100% open-source eCommerce solution is open for free download and allows users to design, set up, and run their own eCommerce stores as they want.
Magento is now owned by eBay, the global leader in eCommerce with a wealth of experience and resources in commerce-related technologies.
Magento has large market share in eCommerce trends Globally you can check the live statistic report from Builtwith.com.
Magento Enterprise VS Magento Community
Magento Community Version
It is best for those who are planning to start a small budgeted eCommerce website. With magento community version you will get many features that can create a successful online business. It has the ability to follow up with customers by newsletter, creating discounts, promotion for customers with coupons, gifts and allowing customers to create a wish list that they can continually update. Magento offers the following basic features :
- Analytics and Reporting : Magento is integrated with Google Analytics and offers many different reports.
- Product Browsing : It supports multiple images for products, options for extensive reviews, wishlists and much more.
- Catalog Browsing : It allows customers to easy navigation, advanced product filtering system, product comparison.
- Catalog Management : Inventory management, batch import and export of products, different tax rates per location, additional product attributes.
- Customer Accounts : Customers can check order status and history, e-mail and RSS feeds for products in the wishlist, newsletter subscription, default billing and shipping address.
- Customer Service : Enhanced features for customers accounts, Contact Us form, comprehensive order tracking and history, customizable order e-mails.
- Order Management : Create orders through admin area, create multiple invoices shipments and credit memos, call center order creation option.
- Payment Methods : It offers credit cards, PayPal, Authorize.net, Google Checkout, checks, money orders, and also support external payment modules like CCAvanue, ePay, eWAY and many more.
- Shipping : Shipping to multiple addresses, flat rating shipping, supports UPS, UPS XML (account rates), FedEx (account rates), USPS and DHL.
- Checkout : One page checkout, SSL support, checkout without having an account.
- Search Engine Optimization : 100% Search Engine Friendly, Google SiteMap support.
- International Support : Multiple languages and currencies, list of allowed countries for registration, purchasing and shipping, localization.
- Marketing Promotions and Tools : Coupons, gift voucher, discounts and different promotion options.
- Site Management : Control of multiple web sites, multiple languages, tax rate with support for Local and International markets, customizable outlook through templates.
- Feature Full : You can add more features with free and paid modules from Magento Connect.
BlueHost offers one click installation of Magento store. If your hosting do not support one click installation of magento or for installing magento in localhost you can download the latest version from here: https://www.magentocommerce.com/download.
Magento Enterprise Version
If you want to get started with a professional e-commerce plaform, Magento Enterprise is a true solution for you. It offers everything that Magento Community offers as well as the following advantages :
- Full Page Caching : Serve all visitors complete category, product, and CMS pages directly from the cache (excludes personal information). This generally improves server response times and reduces load, which enables you to offer a faster shopping experience and handle more customers with your existing infrastructure.
- Customer Segmentation, Targeted Promotions & Merchandising : Create personalized shopping experiences that boost conversion rates by dynamically displaying content and promotions to specific customers based on properties such as customer address, order history, shopping cart contents, wish list items, and more. You can also target unknown site visitors based on products viewed or items in cart.
- Automated Email Marketing Reminder : Increase sales by automating email reminders to customers with abandoned shopping carts and wish lists. Email reminder campaigns can be triggered based on a wide variety of conditions, such as time since a cart or wish list was abandoned, the total cart value, or specific items in the cart. You can also include coupon codes in the email reminders to encourage shoppers to return to your site.
- Magento Mobile Software Development Kit (SDK) : Significantly reduce development effort and time to market when creating custom iOS and Android applications using the Magento Mobile SDK. The SDK includes a complete library of resources, an API to connect the app to a Magento store, and support for all key Magento features. It also offers fully functioning iOS and Android sample apps that can be customized to accelerate development.
- Free Professional Customer Support : Whereas the community edition does not come with professional support, only a message board, the enterprise version offers professional report for businesses and their technical support team to ensure everything runs smoothly.
If you are planning to start an eCommerce website with magento enterprise edition, you can check Magento Enterprise Edition Page.
Disadvantages of Magento
- Though being an Open Source system it offers you the liberty of customization, however possess a high standard of structured programming, based on Zend framework. Simultaneously, in order to incorporate complicated customizations, you need a more complex and heavy layered coding for which you might need to hire a professional;
- Being Magento a very robust system to run properly also requires a more robust server, large disk space and memory which is usually available in VPS, Dedicated Server or Cloud Server.
- If you think about developing your online store in Magento or servicing within your organization through a PHP programmer, the system has a very long learning curve compared to other open source systems, although based on PHP programming, given the complexity of the system;
- The most negative aspect in Magento, is that even if you meet the requirements of robustness server, there is still a risk of the system being slow than other ecommerce solutions.