Magento is an open-source e-commerce platform written in PHP. It is one of the most popular open e-commerce systems in the network. This software is created using the Zend Framework.
More than 100,000 online stores have been created on this platform. The platform code has been downloaded more than 2.5 million times, and $155 billion worth of goods have been sold through Magento-based systems in 2019. Two years ago, Magento accounted for about 30% of the total market share.
In a hurry? Here are the 7 things you should consider before using Magento as an enterprise eCommerce platform:
1. Ongoing costs
Despite Magento Opensource doesn’t require paying a minimum yearly fee of $22,000 a year, it requires you to undergo updates, development, and integration from time to time. And those are just the upfront costs — you’ll also have to factor in the hidden costs of running an on-premise website.
Magento regularly rolls out patches and security updates which need to be manually installed. And the manual installation process is not as straightforward as you like it to be. You’re better off getting support to help you managing and installing the updates, but this would come at a cost. You would need to hire Magento specialists or refer to official Magento support, which isn’t cheap.
2. Needy technology
Do you want to manage technology, or use it? If you’re using Magento Commerce edition, you’ll find that it’s based on an old approach of “download and customize”. Not only does that take time, but it also takes technical knowledge — which again, may cost you a pretty penny if you want your eCommerce experience to be bespoke and enterprise-grade.
This approach from Magento also saps your attention and energy away from the activities that will help you scale your business. Instead, you will be forced to worry about managing the technology and running updates as and when required.
3. The support sinkhole
Magento has 1,300 open and ongoing support tickets. So if you run into issues, you may be waiting in line for quite some time before you find a solution.
If you want to bypass official Magento support (which you’d be paying for handsomely) your ongoing support costs will rise even further, as independent Magento support specialists charge hefty fees.
4. Magento is just an eCommerce solution — but that’s not enough for an enterprise
Here’s a vital point that’s often overlooked (before it’s too late, that is).
Magento is a stellar eCommerce platform, but that’s pretty much all it is. But in today’s eCommerce climate, to even stand a slim chance against the eCommerce giants like Amazon, you need so much more than just an eCommerce platform.
The modern consumer isn’t satisfied with just a product page and some on-site reviews. They want content in abundance before they even consider a purchase. They want walkthroughs, unboxing videos, documentation, third-party reviews, and more. The bottom line, they want an omnichannel experience. In fact, according to data compiled by MineWhat.com, 81 percent of consumers conduct online research before buying anything.
Oh, and you’ll also need to monitor your website’s analytics, collect customer data within a CRM, build landing pages for your ad campaigns and execute email marketing campaigns on a regular basis. Magento was to do none of the above.
5. Updates, migrations, and headaches
Running Magento means you must undergo an endless cycle of updates. And as mentioned before, running these maintenance procedures is not a straightforward task. Plus, you would eventually have to migrate to the newest version of Magento, whenever they decide to roll that out. For example, currently, Magento 1 users are experiencing the pain of having to migrate to Magento 2.
Magento 1 users have to either migrate to Magento 2 or replatform completely, as it was announced that Magento Commerce would not be providing support for Magento 1 after June 2022 (previously, it was November 2018, but this was extended).
6. It’s open-source
As an open-source platform, Magento gives users the ability to customize the code in any way they like. That may sound great at first, but when you consider issue #5 mentioned previously, having a highly-customized, bespoke back-end will make your life even more difficult when it comes to inevitably migration or re-platforming.
Plus, if you stray too far away from commonly used theme and extensions that aren’t peer-reviewed or tested for usability, you’ll risk breaking your entire eCommerce environment.
If you opt for a closed source enterprise eCommerce solution, you can still build a custom site with the help of the software vendor or an agency, but it will be done within the limits of the software, avoiding breakage and future headaches. Plus, closed source platforms have a much healthier track record when it comes to security.
7. Magento isn’t for the IoT era
As more IoT devices emerge, online merchants have to ask themselves a critical question; how are we going to sell products and publish content on all these new channels?
The answer is through a headless commerce platform; which can headlessly deliver products, content and other assets to Amazon Echos, smartwatches, digital signage and everywhere in between.
Sure, Magento Commerce has APIs to help deliver content to a broad range of channels; but as previously mentioned, Magento is just an eCommerce solution — it was never meant to manage a brand’s omnichannel strategy across all touchpoints. So, at best, you’ll get an inconsistent experience because you’ll have to draft in additional technology to plug the gaps left by Magento. Hardly ideal when brands like Amazon are providing seamlessly enjoyable shopping experiences.
Consider your options before using Magento as an enterprise eCommerce platform We won’t deny that Magento is a stellar eCommerce solution; but will argue that it’s not the best commerce solution when you factor in things like.