MagentoLive Germany 2014 Handpicked Presentations

October 24th, 2014 No comments

MagentoLive Germany is always a terrific event for the Magento Community in Europe, as it gathers numerous experts and outstanding people all around the world.

This year, powered by PayPal, eBay, and other e-commerce major players, the conference was, once again, an excellent opportunity to strengthen the community. Multiple invited persons, speakers, and attendees shared their vision of the future, discussed successes and obstacles, and delivered their knowledge about Magento and e-commerce in general.

And, as usually, we offer our readers an overview of some noteworthy presentations in our blog. It contains only a several abstracts, while you can look through the entire list of videos and presentations on the conference website.

Win New Online Customers and Build Relationships with a Direct to Consumer Business Model

Win New Online Customers and Build Relationships with a Direct to Consumer Business ModelPresentation

Boris LokschinBoris Lokschin, eCommerce Business and Delivery Manager, CGI Sarah SchachenhoferSarah Schachenhofer, Product Manager, HEAD

The presentation covers some peculiarities of a comparatively uncommon, but currently trendy business model – D2C (direct to customer) sales. Based on the Head.com example the authors briefly touch the features of the D2C model and explain the advantages of this marketing and business positioning.

According to the authors, direct to customer sales is a global trend and provide several advantages over other business models:

  • Direct contact to customer;
  • Two-way communication;
  • Unique user experience;
  • Differentiation from competitors;
  • Special product range;
  • New markets.

The modern and powerful Head.com site fulfills all the mentioned above tasks and allows customers to create their own unique Head Racquet online or send their expectations about the product and new services directly to the manufacturer.

This still developing project is a great success among Head’s customers and allows the management of the company to plan new initiatives towards further D2C implementation using Magento as a foundation for their online embodiment.

Beyond the Curve, Staying Ahead of your Customer’s Journey

VideoPresentation

Sebastian GutierrezSebastian Gutierrez, Senior Project Manager, eBay Enterprise
Richard BettinsonRichard Bettinson, Senior Digital Media Strategist, eBay Enterprise

The mainstream of the presentation is in guiding customers during their online journey, rather than just following them behind. The authors offer several trendy tips for that.

Location Based Marketing
Using customers’ location marks merchants are able to offer them products or services available for immediate consumption creating a sense of constant brand presence and useful assistance.

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    10 New Magento Themes in Our Store

    October 21st, 2014 No comments

    Fine dress helps to impress

    Nothing better affects the appearance of an e-commerce store as a gorgeous and UX-friendly web store theme and today we glow to announce you our new products – 10 fine-designed responsive Magento themes from our partners.

    Professionally looking and easy-to-browse online stores have much more chances to grab customers’ attention and hold it until the very checkout.

    10 New Magento Themes in Our Store

    The mentioned below themes all deserve to be installed on your store and you should just choose the one, which perfectly fits you customers and products. All the themes are multipurpose, modern, and functionality rich:

    • Activa Themea high-quality responsive theme suitable for any kinds of devices;
    • Electra Theme a highly-customizable theme, which allows you to create exclusive appearance of your store easily;
    • Vespa Theme – the theme is suitable for leading brands and retailers and provides a cutting-edge design and functionality;
    • Pulsar Themesimplicity and elegance is the slogan of this theme;
    • Glamour Themea stylish and modern theme adaptive to all kinds of devices, designed for trendy brands and customers;
    • Maestro Themesoft and gentle, it meets all the requirements applicable to a modern and superb theme;
    • Deluxe Themethis theme brings to your store great appearance and rich functionality;
    • Access Theme – it is all about style and usability;
    • Duke Theme – highly configurable and feature rich, the Duke theme makes your store 100% responsible;
    • Karizma Thememakes your site recognizable and exclusive with its own flavor and style.

    Browse those excellent Magento themes in our store and you will find the one perfectly suitable for you. Great functionality, clean code, and smooth integration with Magento make them all worthy of your choice.

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      HOW TO: Create Effective Loyalty Programs with Magento Points & Rewards

      October 16th, 2014 No comments

      Pure sales are no longer the only marketing goal for merchants, as the sales funnel starts far beyond the checkout or even pages of you site, and a low price is no longer the only incentive for customers. Brand awareness, retention of customers, and continued loyalty – these are the greatest values for sellers nowadays.

      The Points & Rewards Magento extension by aheadWorks provides you great functionality to achieve the objectives mentioned above persuading customers to purchase more from you using their earned points. The universal nature of points is truly beneficial as they can be spent on any product, in contrast to free products or gifts.

      Effectiveness of Customer Rewards

      Create Clear and Exclusive Rewards
      Reward programs and loyalty systems have passed a long way since their first implementations offline and today are used almost by each and every retailer. As the competition is great and customers usually have plentiful options to choose, the rewards you offer should not only be beneficial, but original as well.

      It may come either from exclusive rewards or unique approach to offer the loyalty program. Originally designed and arranged rewards attract customers and make them feel your high-quality service and appreciative attitude.

      The same time, a rewarding policy should be clear and simple without any confusing issues or potentially unfair clauses. Merchants should place their Reward System Statements in a close access for each customer and the main or a most popular landing page, perhaps, is the best location for the link to it.

      Mumzworld.com Loyalty Program

      Mumzworld.com Loyalty Program Original Design

      Announce and Promote Your Reward Policy
      Since you have an advantageous and original reward program you should promote it among your customers any way you can: on site, while customer service rendering, via emails, etc. Customers should know about it, evaluate its benefits, and get involved, which is especially required when customers just not redeem the points or coupons they already have.

      Reward Consistent Loyalty
      Attracting new customers is of high importance for each business and widely intensified by numerous incentives for new shoppers, but manifold studies state that existing clients are more inclined to purchase from you and worth even more attention.

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        Magento vs. Shopify vs. PrestaShop Twitter Audiences Survey

        October 14th, 2014 No comments

        The importance of social media is high for each brand, as most of us contact followers with promotions, important notifications, feedback requests, and some brands even provide customer service via social media.

        So, we asked ourselves a question: “What are the differences of social audiences of main e-commerce platforms? Do they have something similar? Perhaps, they have some overlaps or similar locations, or anything else?” The presented below survey is designed to address these questions.

        The survey covers the Magento Twitter audience, which is one of the most important social media for the platform, compared to the PrestaShop and Shopify Twitter accounts.

        Key findings of the survey are given at the end of this post.

        Note: The data is obtained using Simplymeasured.com

        General Information

        Magento

        Shopify

        PrestaShop

        Joined Twitter

        October 2007

        November 2008

        May 2009

        Followers

        50,074

        129,501

        18,886

        Tweets

        5,954

        14,055

        8,098

        Magento is the oldest Twitter inhabitant, but much less active than Shopify, for example. Shopify also has the best followers/tweets ratio. Each tweet brings Shopify 9.2 followers per tweet, while Magento gets 8.4 followers, and PrestaShop -2.3.

        Magento vs. Shopify vs. PrestaShop followers quantity

        So, total quantities of followers of the mentioned above platforms differ greatly, as it clearly demonstrated on the diagram above.

        Audiences Overlaps

        But to be absolutely realistic this diagram should look like the following:

        Audiences Overlaps

        We analyzed 10 thousand followers from each account and determined that the audience of these three platforms has considerable overlaps:

        • PrestaShop & Shopify – 3.2%;
        • Magento & Shopify – 8.3%;
        • Magento & PrestaShop – 14.2%
        • All platforms – 2.2%

        The overlap of the Magento and PrestaShop audiences is the biggest and mostly presented by digital companies and developers, according to the randomly chosen sample from the mutual 14.2% scope.

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          MM14NY Presentations: From the Magento Community to Conversion Optimization

          October 9th, 2014 No comments

          Meet Magento New York 2014 is one more successful Magento conference held in the United States for the first time.

          It was full of events, including the hackathon and numerous informative sessions, and fabulous  presentations. Today we highlight some of them, which cover both e-commerce tips and Magento plans for the future.

          Magento CommunityMagento Community

          Ben MarksBen Marks, Magento Evangelist, Magento Inc.

          The future of the Magento Community is a subject of care for each and every member of this formation. The Community deeply influences the dynamics of the platform being a powerful driving force for Magento. This value and provided support make us all perceive it as individual entity, which needs to be supervised and cultivated mindfully.

          In his presentation Ben Marks reveals some plans for the future, which are in line with his main tasks – developing the platform, community, and entire ecosystem. To be precise, he announces his plans regarding the role of the Magento Advisory Board, GitHub usage, Magento Connect perspectives, Forums future, and Community Content delivery.

          Coming soon monthly community reports and coming later revamped events page are also the tasks to be done.

          So, the plans are really strategic and multiple, at the same time. Hope, Ben will make them reality soon.

          Magento Security and UsMagento Security and Us

          Lee SaferiteLee Saferite, Senior Web developer, AOE

          This short presentation contains multiple security siggestions and enumerates different Magento threats we should be aware of. Maybe, it raises more questions than provides answers, but it is still very informative for Magento security starters as unveils the topic strictly in accordance with the Magento structure and functionality.

          It starts from the server security and covers some truly valuable tips worthy to be marked:

          • Do not run other software on the e-commerce server;
          • Open only the port necessary for server operations;
          • Use a bastion host to restrict the SSH access;
          • Use the external log file storage;
          • Fulfill backup security procedures.

          Server and user permissions are the next level of the Magento security policy and can be briefly described as the following: “Do not provide excessive permissions and do not give permissions to unnecessary users”.

          The author advises to grant server only user permissions and not provide it with the login shell. The site code should have “read-only” permissions while the files in /var and /media folders should be only writable by the web server user and should not allow running scripts.

          Consistent code security audits are the key to reliable and safe functioning of your Magento store. Several simple precautions will help you maintain your system secured:

          • Never trust third-party modules without security reviews;
          • Stay away from encrypted or obfuscated codes;
          • Never allow modules to include remote self-updates;
          • Do not install modules from Magento Connect via the admin downloader.

          Next. As Magento and other e-commerce stores are of high value for fraudsters you should have several incident response plans for different situations, including code modifications, data steal, or site lockout. This will help you take either proactive measures or instantly respond to compromising actions.

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            Peter Samoilov, aheadWorks CTO, Chooses Hiking and Riding a Mountain Bike

            October 7th, 2014 No comments

            Editor’s note: The Magento community is rich in outstanding people and our blog is always open for guests. However, the community is so widespread that we can also find them just round the corner or even inside our company and today we want to present you the interview with our CTO, Peter Samoilov.

            Many of you are surely know him well, while the others have a great opportunity for this now.


            Peter SamoilovPETER SAMOILOV

            CTO, AHEADWORKS

            Peter is a Magento certified developer with the vast experience in Magento development. He started his career as a programmer at aheadWorks and today he heads the development department of the leading Magento extension provider.
            Peter is an active member of the Magento community and often attends Magento conferences as a speaker.


            aW: How did you come to Magento?

            Peter: aheadWorks started working with Magento many years ago, I can already say. That was the time of the 1.1 and 1.2 versions of the platform, and the Magento Community just began its formation. In those days, if you tried to get search results for the “how to create a Magento extension” query, you would just receive a couple of links to forum threads with the same question.

            It was the time of our pilot project – the Product Question extension for Magento. I was assigned to develop the module and started with wild imprecations against the platform. That was my first acquaintance with Magento.

            aW: How many years do you develop Magento extensions and for how long you head the development department at aheadWorks. What are your most exciting impressions within that period?

            Peter: We work with Magento since 2008; at least, this is the year of our profile registration on the magentocommerce.com site. I have been heading the development department for about two years or even more. Time is ticking fast, besides I’ve always been bad with dates :)

            The first year was full of coffee, broken keyboards, and new experience. Then we started to hire developers and had to teach them coding on Magento, and that was, perhaps, the most challenging and exciting experience for me.

            aW: Tell our readers a bit about your life, hobbies, and activities outside the work please.

            Peter: Actually, I’m a lazy couch potato, and in order to get some new impressions I usually hike on forests during my annual vacations. I also like to ride a MTB through the city. My new passion is the Suzuki Dirt Bike, which is perfect for forest and swamp rides with friends :)

            aW: In your opinion, what features do SMB companies need to be included into Magento Community Edition (or Magento in general) out of the box?

            Peter: I think, advanced reports and drop shipping are mandatory. Magento 2.0 is going to offer something like that, as far as I know. However, we are an extension vendor and need to enhance some Magento functionality, which is not still perfect.

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              Educational Push: Meet Magento Romania 2014 Presentations Overview

              October 3rd, 2014 No comments

              Magento events are a good opportunity to know the current status of the platform and Magento community; they allow us to realize the issues of the greatest interest within multiple local communities and worldwide.

              Magento events provide a great chance to get acquainted with the most advanced researches, technologies, and knowledge related to Magento and e-commerce in general.

              So, we continue our overviews of presentations introduced during Magento conferences and today focus on Meet Magento Romania 2014. Despite it was just a first edition of Meet Magento in Romania the conference was a great success according to multiple positive reviews in social media and gave us all a confident insight that combined productive environment and genuine aspiration of organizers guarantee Magento events success and long life.

              ERP Integrations with Magento: How to do it fast, good and affordableERP Integrations with Magento: How to do it fast, good and affordable

              Alex UrsaAlex Ursa, Executive Director, Netlogiq

              Magento integrations with other business management systems are always in demand, have a strong interest and especially popular among mid-sized and large companies. So, ERP integrations with Magento are the topic of the presentation by Alex Ursa at Meet Magento Romania 2014.

              The core issue of such integrations is a quick, complete, and reliable data transfer between Magento and ERP systems. The author notifies online merchants that integrations can be of three types: from ERP to site or vice versa (one-way integration) and bilateral transmission (two-way integrations). The merchants can choose the one they need assuming the differences in their functionality, price, and other options.

              Two-way integrations are usually more beneficial and technologically advanced. Except the quantitative information, location, price, weight and other product attributes, categories, pictures, up-sell and cross sell promotions, order and client information they also enable you to transfer order and payment statuses, discounts, rewarding points, etc.

              Why these integrations might be valuable? They allow you to avoid duplicate operations, manual mistakes, and repeating data verification. So, they save your time, money, and energy.

              Thus, if you already have a Magento store and ERP system running, spend some time (a lot of time sometimes) and deploy their mutual integration for more reliable and effective business doing.

              Code Quality on MagentoCode Quality on Magento

              Nikolai KrambrockNikolai Krambrock, CEO, Code4business Software GmbH

              Meet Magento Romania 2014 had a strong development track, where many great presentations were introduced. One of them is “Code Quality on Magento” by Nikolai Krambrok.

              The code quality is of much importance for both merchants and developers. With an excellent code merchants obtain advanced functionality, usability, data security, and system reliability, while developers can easily read, understand, adapt and extend such codes.

              The presentation covers some high-quality code tips applicable to coding in general and Magento development.

              At the end of the presentation Nikolai lists several coding guidelines, trustful in his opinion. I’m sure that Magento developers will find this presentation useful and very informative.

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