By Author admin

Which Is The Best Enterprise eCommerce Platform? Shopify Plus Vs Magento Enterprise

Shopify Plus Vs Magento Enterprise? What to choose?

It’s the big eCommerce showdown.

shopify plus vs magento enterprise

It all boils down to one question:

What is the best enterprise eCommerce platform for your business?

With over 15 years eCommerce experience, acidgreen is your multi-award winning, certified Magento Enterprise Partner and Shopify Plus Partner. 

acidgreen has deployed over 200 highly successful online stores that generate the highest conversion rates and impressive ROI. That’s why when we take on a new client, we want to be sure that they have instilled confidence in not only our agency, but their chosen eCommerce solution. Here at acidgreen, we are platform agnostic and we will partner our clients with the best solution based on your individual requirements. 

Every business is unique, and for that reason, every website should also be just as equally unique. acidgreen is committed to providing the best enterprise eCommerce platform to our clients. That includes meeting unique, brand niche specifications. 

This article will discuss the ongoing debate between the two best enterprise eCommerce platforms and clear market leaders; Shopify Plus Vs Magento Enterprise. We’ll point out their key differences and similarities, as well as some of their advantages and disadvantages.  

Our research and comparison was conducted objectively to help you to decide which one could best fit your business.

Why eCommerce Platforms Are So Important

First and foremost, an eCommerce platform is a software system which allows for the management of an eCommerce website.  Literally, these are virtual storefronts where consumers are able to buy a product or service online. Through these systems, online merchants have the ability to build and host their website, manage their products, prices, promotions and personalize their sales and services. When a business becomes larger and more profitable, where higher volumes need to be managed, their ecommerce strategy requires a solid platform.

Enterprise eCommerce Platforms” are ideal solutions for big brands and large organizations.

Let’s Break It Down Step By Step… Shopify Plus Vs Magento Enterprise

Shopify Plus Vs Magento Enterprise. They are the two best enterprise eCommerce platforms.

Magento is described as “the leading platform for open commerce innovation” (www.magento.com). It is currently the biggest ecommerce platform with 29.1% of the total market share in March 2016 and boasts 250,000 live stores from all over the world. Launched officially in 2009, Magento Enterprise has a professional client base of worldwide brands including; Coca Cola, Ford and Olympus (just to name a few).

On the other hand, Shopify Plus was launched in 2014, so it is a fair bit younger than its competitor, however, a little more simpler to navigate. This cloud-based enterprise ecommerce platform provides a fully supported service, although it currently holds less of the market share than Magento – at 11%. According to Shopify, the platform recorded +55% of merchants between 2015 and 2016 and the overall total of purchases across the platform (GMV) doubled from $7.7 billion in 2015 to $15.3 billion in 2016.

Below is chart setup to break down the differences:

Shopify Plus Vs Magento Enterpise
What is the best enterprise eCommerce platform?

Shopify Plus Magento Enterprise
Years in business 3 8
Market shares 11% of the total market share in March 2016 29.1% of the total market share in March 2016
Live merchants 2,500 (Shopify Plus) and 400,000 (Shopify) 250,000
Multi-Store Option No (though can have multiple “instances”) Yes

Multi-store is one of Magento’s key selling points, allowing merchants to manage multiple brands, regional stores and B2B / B2C stores from one Magento interface.

Customers in Internet Retailer Top 1000 12 202
Ease of Integration Limited to Shopify API Flexible
Source code accessible No

Proprietary source

The code is owned and developed by individuals and the source code is not available for modification.

Doesn’t require as much maintenance from you in the future.

Yes

Open source

The source code for the platform is available for everyone who can see, modify, and build upon.

Any developer will be able to work with what you already done. Your site has more flexibility to add functionality quickly .With a closed source system, you’re stuck.

However, letting people being familiar with the source code of your site may represent a risk for your website’s security.

SaaS (Software as a Service) Yes No (but Cloud Edition is classified as a PaaS : Platform as a Service)
Technology stack accessible No Yes
Multiple Languages No (though can have multiple “instances”) Yes
Multiple currency checkout No Yes
Localised payment methods No (though can have multiple “instances”) Yes
Tokenisation Possible No Yes
Product Variants Limited to 100 Unlimited
B2B Limited with extensions Yes (with Magento 2.2)
Average cost of build $40k – $80k $80k – $150k
Licence / Hosting costs From $24k p/a From $20K p/a for Magento EE (increases based on merchant turnover)
From $5K p/a for decent Hosting (increases with server load)
(or)
From $80k p/a (Enterprise Cloud)
Targeted client revenue $1M+ $5M+
Cloud-based Yes Yes : with Magento Enterprise Cloud Edition (Magento EE/2)
No : with basic Magento EE  version
Hosting system Fully hosted solution Self-hosted platform
Security/ Version Upgrades Free Requires developer. Paid maintenance


Multi-Store Management

Shopify Plus Vs Magento Enterprise in terms of multi-store management.

While Shopify Plus does not allow for the management of several stores from a single interface, Magento Enterprise has the capability for a multi-store option. This is one of its key selling points, as it allows merchants to manage multiple brands as well as B2B and B2C stores from one Magento interface. In simple terms: it can manage multiple websites that use different domain names and/or languages.

Hosting Systems & User- Friendly Customization

Shopify Plus Vs Magento Enterprise for hosting systems & user-friendly customization.

Shopify Plus is a fully hosted solution. That means that it runs on someone else’s server which manages the layouts of your website.

Why is it good to use a hosted solution?  

Because it is very user-friendly. You only have one web interface and you don’t need to write endless lines of code. You also don’t have the added task of worrying about updates, because the external server does it automatically for you.

However, this also means that in return, you do not have access to the code that runs your site and therefore you have less flexibility when it comes to customization.

On another hand, Magento is a self-hosted platform that requires a robust server to handle Magento’s large resources, which can add operating costs. Even so, the ease for modification is a significant advantage. You own the code, meaning you can change everything and anything you want. You play the game with your own rules.

Pricing

When it comes to comparing Shopify Plus Vs Magento Enterprise in terms of price, there is a clear winner…

Shopify Plus provides a fixed price of $2,000 per month, which covers licensing and support costs. It’s a winning point for Shopify to cover a lot of essential features in a flat rate. Most eCommerce platforms would have additional costs coming in depending on unique customer needs and customization requirements.

Magento Enterprise licensing costs start at $20K. This cost increases depending on unique merchant turnover, so you’re not paying the same amount as an eCommerce giant. The licensing does not include hosting costs which depend on the size of the website.

shopify plus vs magento enterprise

Scalability

Shopify Plus Vs Magento Enterprise in terms of scalability.

Magento Enterprise and Magento Enterprise 2 are generally more flexible than Shopify Plus. Some of the explanations could be that Magento uses PHP (one of the most well-known programming languages) and is an open-source and self-hosted platform. You have the possibility to have access to technology stack, to set up multiple languages and multiple currencies. There are so many options available that is sometimes hard to navigate.

Shopify Plus is more recognized for its simplicity and friendly use. It provide an ergonomic interface and has a faster implementation time, but has also some limits regarding the features.

However, both platforms can be set to scale up in a response to a spike in traffic.

So, What To Choose?

So, if you don’t need a multi-store configuration, or multiple currency checkout, or B2B functionality or advanced integration then Shopify Plus is most likely the best enterprise eCommerce platform for you. Though if you do require a more complex, customised and integrated solution (and have the budget for that) then Magento Enterprise may be the best enterprise eCommerce platform for you as it provides a much richer core functionality than Shopify Plus. The choice you have to make is: do you need flexibility or simplicity for your business? Obviously, the more flexible and customisable a platform is, the more complex it is.  

Still not sure which is the best enterprise eCommerce platform is right for you? Contact acidgreen now for a free consultation. Ready to get started? Great! Contact us now for a free quote. We look forward to working with you.

 

acidgreen is an award winning e-commerce agency  specialising in Magento, Shopify Plus and digital marketing with over 15 years of  industry experience. Our certified developers and digital marketers are highly qualified to create aesthetically pleasing Magento and Shopify Plus websites that generate the highest amount of conversions and provide the best ROI. Be sure to follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter, or give us a call to learn more about our services.

By Author admin

Nosto Highlights Magento’s Key Trends

Before we examine Nosto’s recent 2016 report, let’s start from the beginning…

What is Magento?

nosto_magentologo

Magento is one of the most well known ecommerce names in the digital industry. It provides its customers (both B2B and B2C) with a superior and scalable open source platform to launch their online business. In 2016 alone, Magento merchants sold a combined $101 billion worth of ecommerce.

For this reason, Magento has developed a vast, loyal community.

When analysing such a global community, it is important to identify its unique trends and patterns to understand pivotal strengths and weaknesses.

One of Magento’s biggest partners is Nosto. Nosto provides Magento merchants with the capability to deliver customers personalised and guided shopping experiences on your ecommerce site. They provide services such as:

  • Facebook Ads
  • Product Recommendations
  • Behavioural Pop-ups
  • Personalised Emails

 

nosto_logo

 

Nosto’s 2016 Magento Year In Review report showcases ecommerce trends specific to Magento Merchants in 2016. The report is built on Nosto’s propriety data as well as first hand user experience. Their data was compiled by examining key data trends from over 800 million visits to Magento registered sites around the world.

It discusses (as well as offers way to improve):

  • Revenue
  • Traffic
  • Conversions

A common mistake made by many ecommerce merchants is to overlook these different categories and to analyse their online business campaign on a whole. In order to fully understand the user journey, merchants need to break down each step accordingly, especially when we are seeing a progressive growth in dynamic user activity.

The Importance of Multi-Channel Conversions

Here’s an unsurprising fact… Desktop is still number 1 in driving home conversions.

Desktop easily ranks in at the highest percentage of revenue at 57.9% and an average conversion rate of 4.31% (order value: $131 USD)

So, want to hear a surprising fact?

Mobiles have the highest % share of traffic- at a substantial 43.7% even though they deliver the lowest percentage of conversions (2.3%)

Weird, huh?

This statistic tells us two things:

  1. Your mobile site simply isn’t user friendly enough- your UX is failing.
  2. Consumers are more dynamic. They’re not necessarily unhappy, they just prefer to explore what you have to offer on their smartphone device then complete the transaction on PC or table later.

“For Magento retailers, in many ways desktop is still king, but so too is the opportunity that lays in mobile clear”

Merchants should definitely examine this as a possible mobile strategy indication and perhaps think about mobile engagement as a beneficial path towards consumer conversion, but not necessarily the final stage. Conversions are becoming more and more mult-channel and it is clear from the data that mobile devices are favourable in terms of product exploration.

Don’t underestimate its importance!

Nosto’s tips to improve metrics revolve around optimizing your SEO. Search engines i.e Google, remain the biggest sources for traffic to your ecommerce site. Never stop trying to get that top ranking position. Set relevant keywords, both long and short tail. Make sure your landing page is easily readable. Does it have:

  • Visible call-to-actions
  • A ‘contact us’ tag or page link
  • Clear logo & banner head
  • Product previews
  • Content

You must utilise the advantages of content marketing!

The great thing about content marketing is that’s it’s a very subtle sales technique- consumers don’t even realise they’re being manipulated. It’s not so demanding and in-your-face. Ultimately, by producing informative topical trend pieces consumers are more aware of your brand and what you’re selling. It gives you a platform to explain to them why exactly they need your product/services.

Maximise your Social Engagement

 

nosto_social

Engagement with your audience is fundamental and the best way to achieve this is by being active across multiple social media platforms. This means getting involved in current trending topics and producing compelling, entertaining content.

Start a competition. Offer discounts to network followers.

Another great way to achieve successful network engagement is by reaching out to the right people. Identify social media stars with large social media followings as well as popular platforms that have a large fan-base. Send them free product samples, share their content. Encourage them to feature your brand!

Say Yes to Digital Advertising 

Digital advertising allows for very specific targeting options which allow you to hone your message and give higher returns.  Perhaps consider dynamic product level ads that display your top sellers. After all, these products are the ones that are most likely to convert.

Once they get to your site, make sure they don’t go elsewhere. This goes back to optimising your sites content. Make sure it’s aesthetically appealing, yes, but also make sure it’s easy to use e.g. streamline your payments and improve your UX.

Be sure to communicate to your audience your unique selling propositions throughout the entire customer journey. Consider sale techniques like free shipping, or personalised discounts when purchases are over a particular threshold.

The average consumer visits a site between 1.80- 1.85 times before making a decision. Techniques like cart abandonment emails are a great way to in persuading them to come back.

nosto_email

 

Use personalised recommendations such as, ‘shop the look,’ ‘related products’ or ‘customers who bought this also bought’ on your sites checkout page. This is also a great tool for remarketing.

nosto_cus2

 

Remarketing/retargeting is a proven successful way to convert customers. It’s also proven to be more profitable. Use dynamic ads and maximise the number of products you are able to display to a consumer. Be sure to make them relevant!

Nosto’s Key Takeaways 

With the increase of multi-channel usage by consumers, we can see from Nosto’s Magento data, that consumers are becoming more and more multi-channel present. This means that making sure your site is optimized across all devices is imperative.Target relevant audiences only. Your bounce rate will sky rocket if your reel the wrong crowd in. This will also decrease the value of your SEO. To prevent this, make sure shoppers know exactly what you’re selling, what your products, features and benefits are.
Break down your marketing plan and figure out what’s working and what isn’t.

Acidgreen is an award winning e-commerce agency  specialising in Magento and digital marketing with over 15 years of  industry experience. Our certified developers and digital marketers are highly qualified to create aesthetically pleasing Magento websites that generate the highest amount of conversions and provide the best ROI. Be sure to follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter, or give us a call to learn more about our services.

By Author admin

Game-Changing Features of Magento 2

The late David Bowie stated eloquently, ‘Changes… turn and face the strange’.

magento 2 features list
features of magento 2

While his statement was not consciously written to chronicle Magento and its recent remodel, Magento 2, the concept still inimitably applies itself.

Magento 2 is the latest release by the most popular open source eCommerce platform in the world. It assists B2B and B2C by providing omnichannel shopping experiences, enhanced performance and scalability with unrivalled flexibility.

Ultimately, the new and improved features of Magento 2 aim to provide higher conversion rates and ROI to all its clients.

The leading platform’s empowering self-declaration is to, ‘change the world of eCommerce’.

Features of Magento 2 13

Now, the question remains; does it deliver?

acidgreen was one of the first Magento partners in Australia, and we definitely believe it does… here’s a few reasons why:

If you’re reading this, there’s a high chance you’re a current client of Magento 1. After all, with the excess of 240 000 shops run by Magento out there, it comfortably dominates at 25% of the worldwide eCommerce market. It’s not hard to understand why either- it’s SEO friendly, easy to extend, rich in features with optimal functionality and above all, developers and site owners have full control.

Magento 1 has had over eight years of proven success and it still remains effective. However, the new features of Magento 2 prove it to be even faster, better, harder and stronger.

Features of Magento 2:

No Wait Time 

One of its most obvious advancements is its improved cache system. In M1, optimizing caching was done so through extensions. Now, it is built in with support for Varnish caching- meaning no more third party installation. This reduces the amount of queries and instead relies on an internal database system

In simple terms, this means quicker loading times. Content is delivered to customers faster, therefore maximising the user experience and ultimately leading to higher conversions rates.

Plus, the database actually features statistics of lost conversions due to time spent waiting for page loads. So you’ll know if something isn’t functioning properly.

If you don’t fully understand the benefit, just consider this statistic: a 1 second delay on your site can mean a 7% loss in conversion. 

Features of Magento 2 3

Streamlined Checkout

Think about when you’ve gone to checkout your items on an eCommerce shop. Ever been annoyed by the arduous sign up/’checkout as guest’ situation? As it turns out, this is a fatal flaw for many customers.  Luckily, this is no longer an issue.

The modern system has been broken down into two simple steps:

  1. Collect customer info,
  2. Collect billing info- billing address information is only needed if it is required by the payment method.

The system automatically assumes the customer is a guest and it will pick up on those already registered via the email field. They are then offered the opportunity to log in.

Its checkout system has further been upgraded through the integration of high performing payment gateways e.g. PayPal, BrainTree, Authorize.net, WorldPay (Enterprise Edition), CyberSource (Enterprise Edition) that weren’t previously supported.

M2 also features an improved order summary page by enabling the ability to incorporate product images and/or videos in the customer shopping cart. This makes for a more interactive, dynamic customer experience.

Features of Magento 2 1

SEO Maximisation

A crucial feature for a successful web shop is a high search engine ranking. M2 has incorporated new improvements to help make sure you’re at the top of the list.

M2’s new XML sitemap improvement means you can set the priority and frequency for any page type i.e. products, categories and CM pages. Plus, as well including Google Analytics tracking, eCommerce tracking and AdWords (much the same as M1) it has also added Google Tag Manager. GTM allows you to quickly and more efficiently update tags and code snippets to your site.

Moreover, with the help of Rich Snippets- an addition that allows you to add product labels without the hassle of third party extensions, you can take use of your site structured mark-up data. This will inevitably make your product page stand out in Google search results.

Features of Magento 2 10

Other Features of Magento 2:

  • It has officially minimized and bundled JavaScript, thus reducing unwanted browser’s operations.
  • With its new image compression function clients now have the option to optimize images directly on the server using M2’s built in tools, rather than having to do it manually.
  • The M2 Admin Panel Dashboard displays statistics such as: Average Order, Last Orders, Lifetime Sales, Last and Top Search terms- therefore assisting you/the client in monitoring your state of business.
  • Magento 2 is in full support of the latest versions of PHP which comprise new security fixes as well as improvements on functionalities that directly affected the web store’s speed.

Features of Magento 2 4

Grasping an understanding of the new features of Magento 2 and its superior functionalities, it is easy to justify making the transition to the modern program. Particularly when the said transition leads to higher conversion rates and larger ROI.

acidgreen is an award winning Magento ecommerce web design development company with over 15 years of web design experience. Our certified magento developers, digital marketing executives and designers are highly qualified to create aesthetically pleasing magento websites – that generate the highest amount of conversions and provide the best ROI. For more information on Magento 2 and how to get started with acidgreen’s web development services, contact us today.