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Magento: Introduction

Magento: Introduction

Magento is an open-source solution for development and management of e-commerce software. Varien, Inc, a US private company, developed Magento that is is written in PHP and uses Zend PHP and MySQL databases. It has a modular architecture and is available for further modifications. It offers a high scalability and wide range of functionality including a CMS (Content Management System).

Two editions are available: Magento Community Edition and Magento Enterprise Edition.

Magento Community Edition is a free and open-source CMS that supports customization. Magento Community Edition is suitable for small businesses that want to launch e-commerce solution without spending much money. Technical support is not available for Magento Community Edition. To improve the functionality of e-commerce solutions, different Magento extensions and plugins can be added. Subscribers can buy them in the Magento Extension marketplace.

Magento Enterprise Edition is a commercial version. A number of packages are available: Magento 2 EE with Gold Support costs $22,000 per year without any revenue guarantees, Platinum Support Package - more than $26,000 per year. Enterprise Edition has a full support of Magento team. After the end of the licence, the website will still operate, but it will not be supported any more, e.g., a subscriber will not get updates.

General Magento Features

  • Tools for marketing and promotion: related products, promotional pricing, flexible pricing rules, free shiping option, newsletter management, landing pages for each category, wish lists, etc.
  • SEO (Search Engine Optimization): auto generation of site map and frequently searched products, metadata for pages, Google Content API for shopping.
  • Site management: customized design, pre-designed templates, universal Admin Panel for multiple websites, CMS for landing pages, rates taxation, CAPTURE option, support for multiple language and currencies.
  • Catalog management: unlimited products attributes, image resizing, product tags and reviews, RSS feed, customer sorting.
  • Catalog browsing: configurable search, recently viewed products, layered navigation with product filtering, popular search products.
  • Product quick view: multiple images for one product, image zoom-in option, share on social networks, grouped products view.
  • Checkout and payment: saved shopping carts, PayPal gateways integration, one-page checkout, offline payments, SSL security support.
  • Order management: admin panel to create / view / edit orders, print invoices, assisted shopping option, email notifications, RSS feed for orders, order tracking.
  • Customer accounts: address book, dashboard, newsletter subscription, submission of product reviews and tags, commenting on wish list.
  • Customer service: order tracking, Contact Us form, password reset, etc.
  • International support: support for different currencies and tax rates, EU cookie notification, right to left text support.
  • Analytics and reporting: Google Analytics integration, sale and tax reporting, product review reports, low stock report, etc.
  • Mobile commerce: pre-integrated mobile HTML5, responsive design, support for native device apps.

The listed above features are common for both Magento  editions. But Enterprise Edition has own exclusive features that include customer targeting and other promotional options, persistent shopping, private sales, gift registry, remider for automated email marketing, multiple wish lists, RMA (Return Management Authorization), backup and rollback, price and promotion permission, etc.