Your customers are increasingly browsing and buying products online or on mobile. From established brands to newbie entrepreneurs everyone is looking at getting a share of the growing e-Commerce market. Now that you have considered kick starting your e-commerce venture, one of the first challenges you are faced with is to identify an easy, cost-efficient and comprehensive e-Commerce platform to build your own online business.
With the market saturated with a number of capable e-Commerce platforms, the task can be daunting. Here are a few factors to be considered while selecting an e-Commerce platform that right for your business.
Factors to Consider
With the market saturated with a number of capable e-Commerce platforms, the task can be daunting. Here are a few factors to be considered before zeroing in on an e-Commerce platform that is right for your business.
- Cost Effectiveness
- Ability to Customize
- Business Friendly Features
- Ease of Use
- Popularity and Adoption
What is Magento?
Magento is an open-source PHP based e-commerce platform that has robust features and offers ample flexibility to business owners to manage the appearance, the content and the functionality of their e-commerce store.
In addition, Magento also offers an intuitive admin interface that seamlessly integrates effective marketing, search engine optimization and inventory management tools that gives the business owners the freedom to customize and create websites as per their business requirements. Another advantage of selecting Magento is that it is scalable, has a reputation for being highly reliable among other business owners and receives extensive support from the developer network.
Developers are constantly trying to make database queries more efficient and adding new potential features to the platform. This ensures that Magento is constantly evolving to suit the business requirements of store owners.
Advantages of Using Magento
Cost Effective - Magento comes in 2 version, Community and Enterprise. The community edition is absolutely free to third party usage, comes with an exhaustive set of features and facilitates customization.
Extension Marketplace - With Magento you can change your store any way imaginable. It has its own extensions marketplace called Magento Connect. Connect features both free and paid extensions, which can be sorted on popularity and category. These extensions enable functions such as one step checkout, social login, Magento WordPress integration, Fooman Google Analytics, etc.
Open Source Community and Network Support – Magento is Open Source so anyone can modify the CMS to meet new requirements. You can suggest Magento community to new functionalities and improvements to the system.
SEO Friendly – Magento-based e-commerce websites feature powerful SEO, marketing and management tools so to fulfil particular business needs of the merchants.
User Friendly – Apart from SEO Friendly Magento is Responsive by default so your website visitors can check your store in a convenient format and making your business ready for Mobile Commerce. With product attributes you can add filters to let customers filter for products by brand, color, size or price. You can also add your own custom attributes to make filtering more advanced for your customers. You can suggest related product and cross sell products.
Business Insights – You can easily integrate a visitor tracking program like Google Analytics and advanced email marketing features in Magento. You can receive advanced reports and statistics about your customers’ buying behaviour, interests, most searched products, etc.
Multishop - One of the key advantages of Magento is the use of Multishops. You can manage multiple stores on multiple domain names all from a single backend.
Global – Magento is focused on growing your business and brand globally. This is where the language features come in handy. As of Community Edition 1.6 Magento will automatically adjust the language of your store to the customer’s language depending on geo location. Users can also specify their preferred language, which will be remembered by your Magento store through a Cookie.
Shipping and Payment - Shipping and Payment are handled very easily in Magento. You can automate the shipping process. The most used payment methods like Credit Card or Paypal built in, and for every other payment method there are free extensions available. You can even accept Bitcoins with Magento!
Each of the e-commerce platforms has its own specific advantages and disadvantages, Magento is the preferred shopping cart solution for small and large businesses.