Book Image

Learning Magento 2 Administration

By : Cyndi Williams
Book Image

Learning Magento 2 Administration

By: Cyndi Williams

Overview of this book

Magento 2 has been completely re-written and re-designed to take the world’s most popular open source e-commerce platform to new heights of productivity and usability. With this overhaul comes improved opportunities to leverage the world’s most successful open source e-commerce platform for your online retail and wholesale business. The focus of this book is on operational aspects: those actions you, as a proprietor, can take to give your customers a more delightful shopping experience. In this guide, we delve into all aspects of managing a Magento 2 store, from product creation to marketing, customer management to search engine optimization. This book is not only a step-by-step course in setting up your Magento 2 website, it will be a handy reference as continue to improve and refine your online presence.
Table of Contents (16 chapters)
Learning Magento 2 Administration
About the Authors
About the Reviewer

Using Magento for e-commerce

People often ask us why we recommend Magento as an e-commerce platform more times than any other platform. After all, there are so many solutions available, many with less startup costs (and many with higher startup costs too).

The key to our recommendation is that as owners of e-commerce businesses ourselves, we know that operating a profitable and vibrant online store is much more complex than many would guess. If you've been in e-commerce already, you know too well that establishing, growing, and managing a web-based retail business can be every bit as challenging as building a brick-and-mortar business. Although the downside is much less than a traditional storefront, e-commerce adds business considerations and processes that are unique to online commerce, especially in today's highly competitive online marketplace.

If you haven't already, let's discuss some of the primary considerations of running an e-commerce business you do or will do and how Magento can help resolve them.

Selling complex products

It would make e-commerce so much easier if all products were alike—if we only sold shoes or backpacks online. Of course, this would make for a very small group of online stores.

Apparel, for instance, is one of the most complex products to sell online from a configuration and presentation aspect. Sizes, colors, collar styles, gender, and so on—so many attributes for each product. Add to this the idea that inventory for each variant may need to be tracked, and you can quickly see the challenges any platform has in providing customers with easy-to-use selections while meeting back-office business needs.

You may want to sell bundles of products, such as a bed linen collection with sheets, pillowcases, and duvets, yet also offer these products separately. This complexity can truly exceed the capability of many platforms.

We work with clients who have tens of thousands of different products and others with many complex product types, such as variants and bundles. Magento's unique and extremely powerful management of attributes and product types is one of the most powerful reasons as to why we prefer Magento as a platform. We have yet to experience another platform that gives the store owner the depth and power to manage products from tractor parts to cleaning products and t-shirts to computers.

Managing multiple online stores

Many online businesses begin as sole stores selling a particular line of products or services. However, the relatively low cost of entry allows many merchants to develop multiple product lines or retail brands that can be managed by the same staff and resources.

Without having to install and manage multiple platforms, a company can manage all the products, customers, and web content with a single login. Although not generally a good idea due to logistical considerations, we've seen as many as 96 separate websites managed in a single Magento instance.

The multistore feature of Magento also allows the easy creation of multiple language versions of the same brand. Many global brands use Magento in order to provide content in multiple languages.

It was the multiple store feature of Magento that originally lead us to commit our own resources to learning Magento several years ago, and it continues to feed our interest in this evolving platform today.

Extending functionality

We have yet to work with a client that doesn't need to add some feature or function to the base Magento installation, not because Magento is weak but rather because Magento is so capable of supporting the myriad of business needs across so many retail and wholesale sectors.

Many popular hosted solutions, such as Shopify and BigCommerce, are subject to limitations in functionality because their code base is "locked down." In other words, if you want additional features added to these platforms, you're limited to only what these platforms expose via their Application Programming Interface (API). While there are many add-ons available to these platforms, customization is still limited.

Magento is an Open Source platform. This means that the code is fully exposed and can be customized however needed. We've worked with a client who wanted to present their products in a unique manner that was not natively supported in Magento, and there was no third-party extension to meet their needs. We were able to easily add code to the Magento code that solved their requirement. This particular modification would not have been possible with a closed platform.

In addition to the customization of the Magento code, more features can be added using third-party extensions. With Magento 1.x, there were over 3,000 extensions offered on Magento Connect ( Hundreds more are available via other outlets such as Code Canyon ( This is, by far, the largest collection of add-ons for any popular platform.

Global e-commerce

Of all the popular platforms we continue to review and analyze, Magento remains the leader in providing true global e-commerce capabilities. From the built-in currency conversion updater to the inline language translation feature, Magento is built for global commerce.