So you’re doing it. You’re setting up an e-commerce store. Getting started is one of the most challenging steps and deciding what platform to use is a massive decision. If you want to invest in a highly personalized platform that will help you scale easily, Magento may be your best e-commerce platform.
Magento is an excellent platform for businesses looking to grow, but it takes money and time investments to make it work correctly. Not to mention it requires coding, so a Magento developer is necessary unless you are ready to do lots of coding yourself. However, in the long run, those investments will pay off.
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Magento, also known as Adobe Commerce, is an open-source e-commerce platform. A few things to know about how big Magento is:
Because it is open-source, it’s built to be customized and personally tailored for your website. There are thousands of themes available, and Magento web developers can work with the code to customize your website to look and behave exactly how you want it to. Magento has many benefits, so let’s take a look at them.
That’s a fun term to throw in here, free! Using Magento to develop a quality e-commerce store comes at no cost; you don’t need to make any payment to download and use the platform. However, Magento can’t host your website’s server, so you will need to find somewhere for your website to store its data, and that will be a cost to you. Luckily, many web hosting servers support or even specialize in Magento e-commerce stores. Once you have a server to host your website, Magento’s platform can help you build the perfect e-commerce website.
Other e-commerce development platforms will host your website in addition to building your store, but you’ll have to pay for the whole package. When you consider that most of these platforms also force your e-commerce website to conform to a limited range of themes and layouts, it’s easy to see why Magento is such a popular choice.
One of the strengths of the Magento web development platform is flexibility. Many e-commerce companies choose Magento because of its scalability. Put simply; your online store can grow as you do.
If your store experiences overnight growth and demand (first off, congratulations), you won’t have to worry about suddenly crashing your e-commerce store. Magento minimizes your e-commerce store’s growing pains so your website won’t be overwhelmed by a massive influx of traffic. If you get more traffic to your store, you can enjoy the benefits rather than worry about your website performing slowly or even crashing from being accessed so much at the same time.
Not only can Magento e-commerce development help you hold up a growing customer base, but it can also support a growing number of products. As your store grows with new products and categories, Magento’s web development tool will help you grow as much as you like, as it can support hundreds or even thousands of products within one store. Your e-commerce store will be able to expand as long as you keep finding products your customers want to buy.
Again, the Magento e-commerce development platform’s strength is its flexibility. The open-source nature of Magento gives you free rein to make your e-commerce store any way you want. Templates are available to help you get started, but you are not required to use them. You build your e-commerce store to look and feel any way you want and to have any feature that will help your customers; you just have to be able to imagine it. Well, and have a little coding know-how, but we’ll get to that.
When using Magento for e-commerce development, you won’t have to fit your vision into a pre-determined template. Your e-commerce store should be as unique as your brand, and when you employ the Magento e-commerce development platform, you’ll never worry about making your website conform. It will always be what you want it to be, not what the platform says it should look like.
An SEO-friendly website is crucial for potential customers to find your website. Organic search through Google and other search engines is essential for creating a sustainable funnel for new customers. Unlike paid ads, you don’t have to pay to attract new customers. If you invest in quality content and ensure your webpage runs well so that customers enjoy being on your website, search engines will notice your e-commerce store and make it easier for more customers to find you. The Magento e-commerce development platform knows how important SEO is and makes a point to ensure the platform emphasizes points that raise your score in the rankings.
One of the ways Magento emphasizes SEO is by having fast-loading webpages. SEO is all about search engines prioritizing websites that give users what they are looking for and a great experience. If they recommend websites to their users that don’t have what they are looking for or have a miserable experience, it reflects poorly on them.
One of the most important parts of determining SEO is how fast a webpage loads. People expect websites to load quickly these days. If it takes more than three seconds, 40% of people will abandon the website. Webpages that load fast are crucial to giving customers a seamless, uninterrupted experience on your e-commerce store. If your pages consistently load quickly and correctly, hopefully in less than a second, customers will enjoy being on your website more and focus on what you have to offer rather than think about how long the site is taking to load and getting frustrated. Magento’s platform will keep your pages loading quickly so they can focus on finding the right product within your store.
Magento developers know that at the end of the day, one thing is most important for your store, driving sales. That’s how most companies work, isn’t it? Because Magento is specifically geared toward not just having a beautiful and fun website but one that makes it easier for customers to find products they like and make purchases.
The Magento web development platform has tools to help customers convert and generate loyal, repeat customers. It’s easier to segment your customers based on their activity, cart, and purchase history, allowing them to receive highly personalized product recommendations.
When you are shopping online, don’t you like to at least look through the recommended products? Usually, it’s full of relevant products that you want to add to your cart, and many people do. When customers are ready to buy one product, upselling by recommending similar and complementary products can drastically affect your revenue. Not only that, but they will be more excited to come back.
Magento tools also simplify the checkout process. With a one-page checkout, your customers will be less likely to abandon their cart. Through the Magento web development tool, you’ll be able to make checking out a breeze for your customers.
When it comes to e-commerce, you need to be agile and flexible. This is important for your store to stay on top of product quantities, follow e-commerce trends, and manage your content. Magento’s e-commerce development platform helps you stay on top of content and keep it fresh, from product information and industry news to new deals and offers. Keeping your website fresh can keep customers coming back more regularly for updates. They may want to see if the products they like are discounted or check-in for your latest blog. Magento developers can help you keep your website fresh to draw in new and returning customers and manage this content your way.
It might feel like I’m already beating you over the head with this point, but Magento’s web development tool is perfect for creating a personally tailored website. Through this platform, a Magento developer can help you build your e-commerce store from the ground up to look, feel, and function exactly as you imagined it.
Customers judge websites quickly, within 0.05 seconds, so you need to be able to put your best foot forward from the second they land on your page and show who you are as a brand. You’ll be able to customize your website in any way you like, from language, payment methods, and shipping options to store size and organization and link any other content like blogs and reviews. Any website function can be added through one of Magento’s massive library of plugins, spanning thousands of options.
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Let’s say you have a highly successful e-commerce store. You’ve been growing and see another adjacent market you can tap into. It’s different enough from your current store that you can’t just throw it all on the same store, so you want to set up another e-commerce store, one that is a sibling brand under a now growing umbrella.
The Magento web development platform allows multiple websites to be managed under a single account. This way, you don’t have to go through different logins, constantly logging out and logging in; you just log in once and have access to everything. It’s easier to manage the stores and compare how they are doing. More than that, these e-commerce stores can be as different and unique as you need or want them to be. They can have their own unique styles, formats, categories, and features, all within the same account.
A massive key to e-commerce growth has a website that supports multiple languages. Allowing different languages to display on your e-commerce store, especially in different regions, is crucial to global growth. Displaying your website in a language your customer is most comfortable with will help them feel more connected with your brand, helping you build long-lasting relationships with customers. Magento’s e-commerce development platform helps with this. Your store can support language translations to have an international presence. Through Magento, your store will support any language worldwide, so you can expand into markets in the Americas to Europe, Asia, and Africa.
To grow internationally, you also need to support more than one type of currency. A significant benefit of Magento is that your store can accept any currency worldwide. Supporting multiple languages brings in an international audience, and supporting many currencies helps them convert into happy customers.
To have an effective e-commerce store, third-party applications are essential to create a smooth website experience for your customers. Utilizing third-party programs is vital for building a comprehensive, user-friendly e-commerce store. The Magento e-commerce development platform makes integrating third-party programs necessary for your business, such as:
Tools such as PayPal help make paying easier by giving customers more options, so they can use whatever is easiest for them without being a hassle on your end. Integrating with Google shopping can help customers find real-time stock on products they are interested in as well as help them find product reviews, a crucial part of the e-commerce buyer’s journey.
You can use more than just sales tools, though. Popular third-party tools you can integrate include:
You can integrate MailChimp or other email platforms to send automated emails after signing up for your newsletter, let them know about offers, and send confirmation emails for purchases. You can also integrate a WordPress blog to your website to improve your SEO and visibility, not to mention improve your reputation as a thought leader in your industry. Integrating QuickBooks or another money management tool can also help you track profits, payroll, and more.
Security is a huge priority when developing an e-commerce store. Websites that don’t prioritize security are highly susceptible to hackers who can take all your data, change your passwords, and lock you out of your website until you give them a massive ransom. They may also steal your customers’ credit card information, creating fraudulent charges and forcing customers to cancel their cards and get new ones. Suffering from one of these attacks will hurt your credibility. Customers will be hesitant to give you their information, including email addresses and phone numbers, if they think their data isn’t safe with you.
The Magento e-commerce development platform has multiple security tools to ensure your website can sustain an attack without losing data or your customers being affected. Two-factor authentication, secondary passwords, CAPTCHA, and PCI Data Security strengthen your website’s security. Through Magento’s web development platform, your company will have all the tools to create a safe, secure e-commerce store.
Even the most experienced Magento developer doesn’t know everything. As much as we all want to do everything ourselves, there’s no shame in asking for help. When developing a website through Magento, there is no shortage of skilled developers to ask. There are over 150,000 Magento developers throughout the world that make up the Magento e-commerce development community, and chances are, if your website comes across an issue, someone has dealt with that before or at least has some idea of how to fix it. Whether a plugin isn’t installed, or a form isn’t saving the information correctly, the massive Magento community is always there to provide additional support. They can help troubleshoot any issue and provide possible solutions, at least helping developers get on the right track to fix the problem.
As I said, there are a lot of benefits to using Magento. The open-source software makes the Magento web development platform flexible so that your e-commerce store can be however you need it to look and function. That flexibility allows you to use many features to help make the website useful for you and your customers. Some of the best Magento features include:
In today’s information age, data is everything. Data drives everything from your branding and marketing to your products and sales. As the general public becomes more interested in privacy, data through third parties is falling off, making first-party data, data you collect through your website, even more valuable. Magento’s web development platform has advanced reporting features constantly updating to give you the most current data and help you make the best decisions for your business.
You can get up to 20 highly detailed reports on the number of orders, AOV, taxes, shipping fees, number of accounts, and compare product sales. You’ll be able to see trends, look at your reports in any timeframe that you wish, and see where you are generating the most revenue and where your weak spots are. You’ll be able to develop insights to improve audience targeting based on your customers’ actual activity:
If they are getting lost in your website and leaving, you’ll be able to find where they are getting confused, allowing you to improve this area for a better customer experience. On the flip side, if there’s a place that customers are going to a lot on your e-commerce store, you can make that area more easily accessible.
Through the advanced reporting available in Magento’s e-commerce development platform, you’ll be able to improve your customer experience, sales, and operation. You’ll be able to see if certain features interest customers, invest more money into producing your best-selling products, and tweak products that can be improved. You’ll also see what areas of improvement you have for your general operation, gain insight into areas where revenue is lost, and find ways to tighten it up.
Sometimes, when a customer is on your website, they aren’t going to go through all your categories and subcategories to find the specific product they are looking for. They’d rather type something into a search bar and find it that way. Your website search bar may not feel all that important, but 43% of customers go directly to the search bar on a website. They are also 2.4 times more likely to make a purchase and spend 2.6 times more than customers who don’t use the search bar. So, a search bar that meets your customers’ needs is critical. The Magento web development platform can put an advanced search bar that can be customized with filters to help your customers find what they are looking for.
Through the Magento e-commerce development platform, your search bar can feature many filters to help your customers refine their search to get the exact product they are looking for as efficiently as possible. If you sell school supplies, your customers can filter their searches by type of product, like notebooks, backpacks, pencils, etc., colors, sizes, and even cartoon characters if they want that Iron Man lunch box.
A high-quality search bar also needs intelligent search technology to give customers the best results. Far too many website search bars only search for the exact words a customer enters, which can severely limit the results and not provide what they are looking for if a different term is used. For example, if customers search for a sweater, they may not see results for the hoodie they are looking for despite similar results. Another significant issue is misspelling words. If a customer accidentally drops a letter from a term, an intelligent search will still give them the results because of how close it is to what they typed. The Magento web development platform is capable of supporting intelligent searches so that customers can filter their searches and return relevant results despite spelling errors and the exact terms used. Your customers will be happier with their user experience and convert much easier.
It’s becoming more critical for your website to be optimized for mobile devices. 61% of traffic to online shopping platforms is coming from mobile devices, and nearly 80% of shoppers have recently made purchases on their phones. Using mobile devices for internet searches, finding products, and making purchases is a trend that is here to stay. Consumers love the ease of taking their phone out of their pocket to make a purchase. A website that functions well on mobile devices isn’t just a nicety; it’s vital to your online business. Customers expect to have just as good an experience on a mobile device as on a phone.
The Magento web development platform has a responsive design that helps adapt your e-commerce store to any device format. It’s simple to edit the different design reference themes, so make sure your store looks and functions great on desktops, tablets, and phones of any resolution. Magento developers can make sure your customers can easily interact with the touch screen and move through your website seamlessly from the home screen to completing a purchase.
Customization is the name of the game. Having your website look the way you want is essential, no doubt, but the function of your website is also necessary. If a user has a pleasant, seamless experience on your website, they’ll be excited to come back.
The Magento web development platform has thousands of plugins to optimize your e-commerce store. The plugins are crucial to helping you tweak and customize your website’s function and experience to be perfectly tailored to what your customers need and want.
75% of customers will judge your website purely on the aesthetic, so it’s important for it to have the look you want. The Magento web development platform allows you to develop an e-commerce store that is however you want it to look and function, but that doesn’t mean you have to build it from nothing. Magento includes thousands of website themes to choose from, so chances are there is one that you can use to make your website. You, of course, are not required to use any of them, but they can be a great starting point and may even be a source of inspiration for your website design.
Google provides so many crucial services for digital marketing that it’s nearly impossible to operate without them. So much of digital marketing runs through Google. 90% of internet queries are on Google, we use Google ads, we need to have a Google My Business account, customers look for local businesses on Google Maps, Google saves credit card information for customers, and we use Google Analytics to track all your website’s KPIs and metrics. The Magento web development platform allows for seamless integration with Google so that you can utilize its features, such as:
These and others will all easily integrate into your site to make things as easy as possible for you and your customers.
Up to 31% of e-commerce profits come from relevant product recommendations. When customers are ready to checkout, they are in the mindset to make a purchase. Magento’s e-commerce development platform shows customers personalized product recommendations that complement the product(s) they already have in their cart. It’s also an excellent opportunity to upsell customers. It’s not about squeezing more money out of them; it’s about showing them products that might fit their needs better or give them a better experience. If you offer something customers want, they will happily pay more. Also, showing them relevant coupons at this point will entice them to add other items to their cart.
If you have an e-commerce store already set up, but it no longer meets your needs, you can always migrate your store to the Magento e-commerce development platform. Maybe at the time, you just wanted to get something simple up to sell scarves as a hobby, but what started as a hobby is growing into a full-time business, and your current e-commerce store can’t handle your growing demand. Maybe you didn’t want to hire a developer at the time to build and maintain a Magento store, but you need to create a more customized, robust e-commerce store to meet your customers’ needs. Either way, you need a scalable, powerful Magento e-commerce website solution.
Now, this isn’t as simple as picking up all your data and dropping it on your new Magento website. Moving data, especially entire e-commerce stores and large databases of customers, requires meticulous work, especially to have a smooth transition that doesn’t create massive headaches for you, your employees, and your customers.
The Magento web development platform uses an EAV, entity attribute value, model for migrating data. In layman’s terms, everything you are migrating, from product pages to customer accounts to category pages, is given an attribute to keep it organized. It’s not as structured, but this format allows for greater flexibility, one of the pillars of the Magento e-commerce development platform. The features are beneficial in the transfer, but to move everything from your old platform to Magento, you will need to build a script, and website, of course, for it to fit into. For the migration to go smoothly, you’ll need a Magento developer to facilitate the transition.
Many plugins through Magento make the migration process more accessible, but a developer is vital to the process. The developer will ensure all the attributes have a solid structure and fit seamlessly into your new website. They will build the design of your customized website, make sure everything from your previous website fits into it, and conduct tests to ensure that it operates smoothly on your and the customer’s end. The complete migration won’t happen overnight; these steps take time and thorough planning before implementation. Even minor errors can lead to massive crashes if details aren’t gone over meticulously.
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With all those benefits in mind, let’s look at what it takes to build a Magento store. Let’s keep in mind that this is just an overview; lots of hours of meticulous coding go into each step listed below. To successfully build and launch a Magento store, you’ll need the assistance of a certified Magento developer.
Because the Magento web development platform doesn’t host your website, hence why Magento is free, so before building out your store, you need to find a place to host it.
As stated, there are thousands of themes to choose from. You can look for and find the right one for your business, or your Magento developer can build a custom one unique to your e-commerce store.
Once the store is built, you’ll need to add plugins and extensions so your store functions the way you want it to. These are helpful for everything from providing payment options to adding search filters. Many come with a price tag, but you’ll be able to find almost any extension you can think of in the Magneto marketplace.
You need a place to store all your data, after all. From customer accounts that include shipping and billing information to product categories and pages, your database will store all the information your store needs.
The products are the ultimate goal here, so you’ll need a page for every product, not to mention pages for any grouped products. You’ll need to include all the information a customer needs, from descriptions to images to pricing and features.
Finally, we get to pricing. Of course, you’ll set individual prices for every product, but you also need to account for coupons, sales, group discounts, and any other pricing variations you might need.
You may have noticed that I mentioned having a Magento developer a few times. If you’re wondering whether they are necessary or not, let me clarify: they are an absolute necessity. The Magento web development platform is incredibly flexible, you can create an impressive, customized, and scalable website, but it takes time to build it and a large amount of coding knowledge.
Even if you know how to code, you are probably too busy running your business to take the time necessary to build and maintain a Magento e-commerce store. Managing a Magento store is a full-time job, and a Magento developer’s coding knowledge, ability to quickly resolve issues, and customize your store to your specifications are vitally important to running an e-commerce business.
Let’s take a step back and look at some basics. At this point, you know that Magento development is the building, formatting, and maintaining of an e-commerce store. It involves setting up themes, installing plugins, and ensuring that the website operates smoothly. A Magento developer does these tasks to ensure the e-commerce store is up-to-date and running efficiently and smoothly.
There are two types of Magento developers, front-end and back-end developers. Front-end Magento developers focus on the website’s appearance and how well it operates for customers. Meanwhile back-end Magento developers focus on how it works on the server-side, or the company’s side. Magento developers typically focus on one or the other rather than both, so before hiring a Magento developer, know where their strengths are.
A Magento developer can help you get the most out of the freedom of the Magento web development platform. Magento is an incredibly flexible, customizable platform, and it’s that way because you need to handle a large amount of coding on your own. Because it takes more than just a few clicks to get a store up and running, it takes much longer to set up a Magento e-commerce store than another platform such as Shopify. However, with a knowledgeable Magento developer, or a team of them, on your side, you can build the optimal e-commerce store for your business, quite literally from scratch. Without a Magento developer who is an expert coder, you won’t be able to utilize the Magento platform fully.
When you have a Magento developer working on your Magento e-commerce development platform, issues that will undoubtedly arise will be fixed quicker and cost less. Technology can’t always run smoothly, after all. If you have a dedicated part of your budget going to a Magento developer or team of Magento developers, then you won’t spend more to fix problems and won’t have to spend time looking for someone to fix it.
In case of issues, Magento developers are like insurance. Rather than paying exorbitant fees once out of the blue to fix, while your e-commerce store is experiencing problems or even completely down, you make sure your team is on it. There won’t be an increase in their cost for fixing an issue, and they may even have your store up and running before you notice a problem.
The last thing you want while your e-commerce store is down, costing you revenue, is to waste time hunting for someone to fix the problem. You’ll risk getting stuck with crazy freelancer rates because you want to get your online store fixed as soon as possible.
Having an in-house team of Magento developers or hiring them through an agency gives you peace of mind knowing that they are ready to tackle any issue. It’s less downtime, and you don’t have to make changes to your budget. Not to mention, they already know your e-commerce store and aren’t learning it while trying to fix issues, so they can more easily jump right into the problem without having to learn about how the store is supposed to work.
Because of their extensive Magento knowledge, Magento developers can help you customize an e-commerce store to fit your needs. They can help you parse through the many available themes and plugins and build code just for your store to make it work how you need.
As mentioned earlier, the Magento web development platform has a wide selection of themes and plugins for you to choose from. Quite frankly, too many for you to go through on your own. A certified Magento developer can find the theme that will best suit your brand’s style and needs and the plugins that will give your store the customized functionality you and your customers need for your Magento e-commerce store to thrive.
Coding knowledge is paramount when building a Magento e-commerce development solution. A certificated Magento developer will be able to dissect your e-commerce store’s code and find how to optimize it for website speed, a good customer user experience, and allowing room for growth. Magento developers can also help make the specific code to make your store one of a kind.
The Magento e-commerce development solution is perfect if you want to build a robust, customized, and scalable e-commerce store. You’ll be able to add any feature to your website you can think of, have the freedom to tweak your website how you want, will be able to track how the e-commerce store is performing in real-time and give your customers the most desirable user experience.
If you are ready to build a Magento website for your business, or migrate to Magento, set up a meeting with us today and see how one of the top Magento e-commerce development services in Atlanta can help you!