What is Magento? A Comprehensive Overview
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What is Magento? A Comprehensive Overview

>>YAN HUANG: What is Magento? Magento is the
most popular e-commerce platform right now. It’s the most powerful e-commerce platform,
as many have regarded to as, and according to the makers, it is THE fastest
growing e-commerce platform. It started out branching out from a team of
developers from osCommerce— which five, seven years ago, it was THE shopping
cart. They branched out, they made Magento, and
now it’s owned by eBay. So that’s just a little history of what
Magento is. Magento comes in three different versions:
Magento Go, Magento Community Edition— what that means is, it’s the edition that
they release to the open-source community for web developers and web development companies
to build onto— as well as the Magento Enterprise Edition.
With the Enterprise Edition, they have two plans. One is $14,000 per year, and the other is
$50,000 per year, just for the license. The companies that I’ve worked with that
used Enterprise, they were all revenue in the mid-millions per year. For most small to medium businesses, Magento
Go, as well as the Magento Community Edition, is more than enough to suffice for their core
business needs, as well as any kind of expansion and scalability, with both the logistics as well as the functionality
of the website. The many benefits of Magento. What are the
benefits of Magento? One of the really valuable things that a lot
of clients like about Magento that the other shopping carts don’t have is a multistore
functionality. What that means is…let’s say for example,
if you own a fashion boutique and you sell dresses, shirts, pants, and you guys
also sell accessories like belts, bracelets, necklaces… you may want two different brands for that.
With Magento, you can do that. You can have a completely different looking
store and brand for each of those brands that you have. But everything from the backend—imagine
their products, the inventory, and everything— from the logistics step of organizing, it’s
all under one roof. So that’s one of the lovely benefits of
Magento that differentiates it from a lot of its competitors. Magento’s also great SEO wise, or for the
search engines. By default, it comes with these search engine–friendly
URLs or website addresses for the Magento store—all the products. So if the product, let’s say, is Blah Blah
Jewelry, it’ll be yourname.com/blahblahjewelry.html. Pretty much web the product name, so it’s
very descriptive for Google and search engines to understand what it is. It’s also very robust. What I mean when
I say that is it kind of forces the programmers to take a certain approach at doing it. You have to really program in the way where
it’s compliant to their structure, which is highly, very organized. So a programmer can’t just go in and create
what they call a hack job— just some code that is messy and may break
other things, but in the meantime, this works for this quick fix. The way Magento is structured really discourages
that for developers. Hence, it allows you to use scale. As you scale, less problems are going to occur
in that manner. What are some of those powerful features and
functionalities that come with Magento? Well, Magento allows you to have full control
over your categories and products, as well as managing the actual products, so you can control,
obviously, things like names, SKU number, price, product detail,
inventory—upload pictures for each product. The products can also have attributes, meaning
for example, contact lenses—each lens type could be an attribute, or if you have technical or detailed specifications,
in addition to the product description, you can have that set as well. It also comes
with some very powerful inventory management. You can also utilize their wishlist functionality
that’s built into Magento. If you have any kind of promotional things
going on, that’s very powerful in Magento. You can control the cart rules, as well as
control the shopping cart rules. What that means is if you want, let’s say,
every item on your shopping cart to be 25% off, you can do that. If you want, let’s say, every item to be
25% off in a specific category, you can do that. If you want products that are 25% off only
if in the product name it says “red,” or “blue,” you can do that. It is extremely programmable. It’s very
flexible. You can have it so it’ll display on the
actual shopping cart pages, hey, this item is 25% off, or you can wait until the very end, once they
check out, and then you can set it, so once they check out, they can find that their
product’s 25% off. You can use promotional codes, or you don’t
have to. It is extremely powerful—probably the most
powerful as well, as far as controlling that kind of stuff goes, of ecommerce software that I’ve seen. Magento also allows you full access to see
your orders, invoices, customer information, shipment information, and it has a really, really advanced reporting
control. Basically anything logistically that you want
to see, you’ll be able to see it with Magento through their reports and their reporting software. Magento also comes with a built-in CMS, or
content management system, for you to control your content pages— like your Terms of Service or Terms of Use,
privacy policy, any kind of shipping information, About Us page— all that stuff, you can just log in to the
backend, and you can edit it through their drag-and-drop text editor, or their CMS. Also with Magento, you can configure how you
want taxes to behave, how you want shipment to work— one thing that’s amazing about Magento is
that it has such a strong community base, that logistically, any kind of shipping company
or fulfillment center that you want to use, as well as any kind of payment gateway or
merge processor that you want to use, they have it available. So those are a few of the very powerful things
that Magento has, so whether you want to ship using UPS, or UPS International, or DHL… You can even configure how and when you want
to utilize each of those shipping options, as well as with the payments—real flexible,
so you’re not just limited to Paypal and [inaudible 07:42] on that. You can actually use this whole array of third-party
payment gateways and merchant processors that Magento supports. So those are some of the built-in, innate
functionalities of Magento. Basically, logistically, you can virtually
do anything with Magento. Whether you need a ERP, or enterprise resource planning system
installed, whether you need to have your e-commerce store
integrated, with Google Base, through [inaudible 08:25]—they changed their
name to Google Merchants, but it’s still the same thing— or whether you need to integrate your Magento
store with Amazon and eBay, so your inventory through those two distribution networks as
well as your own e-commerce website, it shares the inventory controls and product
controls in management. Or, if you need a gift voucher system installed
in place, Magento can do that. I mean, that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Basically, anything that you can think of
logistically, someone else has probably ran into the same issue, and there’s probably a plugin available
through Magento’s extensive Magento Connect plugins library. So, hopefully that gives you a pretty good
idea of what Magento is, the benefits of Magento, the features and functionality, as well as the fact that you have access to
thousands of plugins available in the phenomenally wide plugins library that
Magento has. Hopefully this gives you an idea of how Magento
could be applied to your business, so if you plan to start selling products online, or if you already are but want to move to
a more robust and powerful platform, Magento may be an option for you. Also, it’s very powerful—what that translates
into is a better user experience for your customers, which translates into more high conversions
of those same customers. For your internal operations, there’s a
lot of things to help streamline that…save you time, effort, and ultimately money, if you have staff that
does this kind of stuff. So that’s basically Magento in a nutshell.
I’ll post a link underneath this video in the description, to a page where I’ll outline some more information
about Magento, as well as some external links that you can check out,
you know, do a little bit of self-research. If you have any questions or anything, feel
free to go to my blog, yanhuang.me, click on Contact, and I’ll be more than happy to answer any
questions that you have. If you want to get started or have a Magento
website built, I will be more than happy to speak with you as well.


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