Thoughts from a Magento Developer and Magento Development Company

Thoughts from a Magento Developer and Magento Development Company

This blog post will continue to grow over time and link to other relevant posts.  My goal is to provide you with an much information about Magento 2 as possible. If you’ve paid any attention to Magento in the past few years, you have likely heard of some bugs and issues with the initial launch of Magento 2. Although I’ve seen these issues cause some concern within the market, most of the known issues have been resolved.  Magento 2 is a thriving platform, that combined with the right agency partner handing the development and technical support can lead to accelerated growth within e-commerce and B2B commerce enterprises.

Here are several topics and resources with strategies, tips and advice to help you along your Magento 2 journey.

A Magento developer perspective on what is involved in migrating from Magento 1 to Magento 2?

This is a very good question and you will notice that I used the word migration instead of an upgrade. It is a completely different platform. The good news is that the data schema is fairly similar, so the data migration is fairly straight forward.  Here are some things you’ll need to know.

  • If you have a custom theme on Magento 1, you will need that theme re-coded on Magento 2.  However there are several existing themes to leverage on Magento 2 to get you started. Our 2 favorites are Porto and Ultimo.  Leveraging a theme will reduce front end development time and help you get to market much quicker.
  • Migrating data is not as easy as exporting and importing. It can be, but if you have over 1,000 products and existing customer records, it is worth reaching out to a professional that has been through the process. Accelerate has worked with over 30 retailers and is currently in progress with 20 more to migrate from Magento 1 to Magento 2. Professional Magento developers can leverage previously used scripts and tools to automate the data migration process and ensure it’s accuracy.
  • Migrating from Magento 1 to Magento 2 is an ideal time to clean up your Magento 1 database. You have have old attribute sets you don’t use anymore or other records in your Magento database that are of no use. Hiring an expert to analyze and clean your database will save you server storage space and improve site speed on migration. Also this is the perfect time to create a database maintenance strategy for your Magento 2 site.
  • Migrating from Magento 1 to Magento 2 creates a perfect time to look at your mobile strategy.  Since your original site on Magento 1, chances are a greater portion of your traffic is from mobile devices.  The change in platform provides the perfect time to re-analyze your user experience on mobile and ensure you’re delivering the proper customer experience to drive sales. Mobile design not only effects conversion rate but is also effecting search rankings on mobile devices. This could be a large opportunity for growth for your business.
  • Migrating from Magento 1 to Magento 2 creates the perfect time to look at your analytics and business intelligence strategy.  Accelerate has just released our BETA BI program called Accelerate Analytics.  We’ve created an industry leading analytics program that is driven by strategy to provide our Magento customers with business intelligence and insights like they’ve never seen before. More than analytics, now is the time to really understand the metrics that matter the most to your business and why, then to take action against them.

This is just the starting point, this post will be added to weekly over the next year and will become the leading resource center for Magento 1 and Magento 2 retailers and B2B organizations. If you would like to speak with us about our Magento 1 or Magento 2 capabilities. You can contact us by filling out the form on the right.

Magento developer perspective on Magento 2 Cloud vs. Magento Deployed

Magento’s new cloud offering is a well architected infrastructure environment that Magento manages providing the benefits of Saas (Software as a Service) with the maintained flexibility of open source e-commerce.  Cloud provides GIT and SSH access to a well maintained Magento infrastructure and leverasges state of the art Fastly CDN to ensure the infrastructure is fast.

Why Cloud

We recommend Cloud for retailers that do not have the internal system administration and database skills to manage the architecture and they want to rely on a third party to delivery performance.

Why Deployed

When you own the server and have root access, you are not tied to the performance of someone else. If you have fast changes or quick support needs and have the resources to manage it, a deployed solution is a much more clean approach to provide the control you need for the business.

Magento developer perspective on what integrations have we worked on with Magento 2

So far Accelerate has worked on the following Magento 2 integrations.

  • Quickbooks Point of Sale
  • Mailchimp
  • RetailPro Point of Sale
  • Zoho CRM
  • Fishbowl Inventory
  • Fedex
  • UPS
  • USPS
  • More coming soon

What does a typical ERP integration look like

There are many thing to consider, when integrating Magento 1 or Magento 2 to an ERP. We have outlined some points to note below.

Biggest Risk

The biggest risk in integrating Magento 1 or Magento 2 to your ERP is editing orders. Magento doesn’t truly allow for native order editing, but the order is cancelled and a duplicate order is created in it’s place with a new order number. When you’re editing or managing orders within the e-commerce platform this is not a major issue. However, when you are managing your customer service activities within the ERP, this can cause complex issues in mapping data between the two systems. Be sure your integration team does a thorough planning job to ensure this is not a major risk on your integration.

Scope of a typical Magento to ERP integration

Here is the standard flow and process we see.

  • ERP is the master product management tool.  At a minimum the ERP controls SKUs and inventory count as well as inventory business rules.  Some retailers manage product descriptions and marketing information within the e-commerce platform independently. This is really a business decision you can make coordinating with your operations team.
  • Inventory is synched from the ERP
  • Products that are new are created from the ERP in a synch to the e-commerce platform.
  • New orders are pushed to the ERP
  • Orders are mapped to existing customers or new customers are created within the ERP
  • Gift card balances are synched

The ERP integration can be much more robust, but this is the starting point. The business processes with customer service activities and managing returns can be a little more complex and need mapped more in detail.