While considering open source or licensed ecommerce development software such as x-cart, shopify, prestashop etc…Magento certainly stands out from the crowd due to it’s modular architecture and multiple storefronts. From the perspective of an IT decision maker, one may be extremely tempted to choose Magento ecommerce development software to build an ecommerce store, as it is an open source software with an active developer community support. But the bitter truth is, Magento custom development is not for everyone. To be precise, 5 factors as listed below have to be considered before choosing Magento:
1. Open Source Vs Licensed Software : This is the primary question that haunts every wannabe entrepreneur. As an open source software, Magento offers accessibility and freedom to modify it’s code, thus allowing you to customize your ecommerce store completely. Also Magento has one of the most active developer community, providing quick bug patches and version upgrades. Licensed ecommerce development software comes with restrictions for third party module integration.
2. Project Budget Vs Feature Requirement: Normally clients planning to launch a large online store with an expected annual revenue of 1 million and above, are suggested to opt for Magento ecommerce software. The underlying reasons for this are, firstly the involvement of highly experienced developers which adds to resource cost, and secondly the time involved in developing the online store. In addition, Enterprise Edition of Magento is recommended for Enterprise level clients who require additional features and requirements such as frequent inventory updates and speed optimization.
3. Complexity: While modularity is one of the best features offered by Magento enabling segregation of modules code with the core Magento files, using Magento involves a deep learning curve. Magento custom development is not recommended unless you employ a team of experienced professional developers for Magento ecommerce development.
4. Size of store and scalability : When we say scalability, it is with respect to possibility of launching multiple online stores. Magento offers multiple storefronts and provides multi language support. In addition, you can choose to share the customer database of multiple websites or choose to turn off the option.
5. Branding and Marketing: If your store requires aggressive marketing and you do not want to spend a great deal of time and money in figuring out advanced SEO tools, then Magento would be your right choice. Magento became popular among online marketers and SEO analysts than with any other segment of professionals, precisely for the advanced features it offered for SEO. In addition to in built SEO, Magento also provides promotional, analytics and reporting tools that come very handy for online marketing and branding.
Apart from the above you can also consider the type of product and the demography of your customers. A recent conversation with one of our Project Leads who has worked with almost all major ecommerce software revealed some interesting opinions people have about the software in general. According to him,
“Magento is a great software to work with for its numerous features such as promotional tools, ERP, custom modules, catalog management, mobile commerce, shipping and payment modules etc. But despite all the features, one debatable concern of this fantastic software is the site loading time, especially during indexing.”
So if you have a large number of inventory to update and index regularly and if majority of your customers fall in the demography of people not accustomed to waiting longer than few seconds, then you must obviously choose an alternate ecommerce software. Alternatively if you plan to launch a multi site web store and have access to an experienced team of Magento developer developers, then Magento is definitely worth it for your business.