The first quarter of Q1 2018 is close to wrapping up but we are already seeing Magento push its initiatives and priorities hard in order to drive more success for its e-commerce merchants in 2018.  Here are the areas where we see Magento pushing for the rest of the year. Accorin is deeply involved with client work in each of those areas so don’t hesitate to call us if you have a question.

Magento 2.2: Magento is pushing merchants and their partners to upgrade. And with good reason. But the Sunset of 1.x has been postponed: “Magento Commerce 2.2 combines rich, built-in B2B functionality with performance and deployment enhancements, integrated Signifyd fraud protection, and new Social marketing tools specific to Magento that  deliver the industry’s leading B2C and B2B e-commerce solution.” These are the words Magento uses to describe the value proposition of 2.2. Although Magento had been discussing the sunsetting of 1.x by late Fall of 2018 they have pulled back on that objective and announced that the sunset date has been extended out indefinitely.

B2B Is a Huge Focus for Magento in 2018: B2B purchases in 2017 more than doubled those of B2C. More manufacturers and distributors are upping their game and taking their transactions online so there is tremendous market pressure for B2B merchants to offer their customers better self-service commerce from websites and apps. B2B merchants understand that their customers are looking for “b2c”-like experiences where they can make purchases on their own, without the need for talking to or interacting with customer service. Magento’s B2B features allow B2B merchants to move quickly into markets with the most complete set of functionalities that commercial buyers are looking for.  Learn more about the key benefits here on Magento’s website. Magento also has a great e-book on planning for B2B expansion and best practices which is a free download.

Magento Pushes its Global Expansion Capability: In some industries it’s easier to expand abroad. Or it’s easier for a company to expand abroad due to logistics and pre-existing fulfillment capabilities let alone market conditions. Magento is pushing its global capabilities for merchants that want to go global for growth. With the ability to open multiple storefronts for various countries off one single back end, and native integrations for global shipping carriers, Magento fully supports this.  With support for multi-warehouse inventory, in store pickup, and distributed order management capabilities, companies with global operations facilities are fully enabled to run their business via all of their global locations. Magento is the perfect platform for high-value global expansion.

New: Magneto Business Intelligence / Analytics and Reporting: With the acquisition of RJ Metrics analytics platform in 2016 Magento positioned itself to be a leader in e-commerce analytics and reporting. The product has been re-branded “Magento Analytics” and while it was taken out of the box in 2017 Magento has charged forward making it an important initiative to sell in for 2018.  We all know that squeezing profits out of our e-commerce efforts means constant review of site performance, marketing campaign performance, on-site performance and much more. Learn more about Magento Analytics here or call us here at Accorin for more details.

The Magento Community, Plugins and Extensions:  As an open source platform there are literally thousands of developer agencies contributing features and functionality to the platform. Because of this there is a deep marketplace of plugins and extensions that can extend the functionality of  merchant’s Magento e-commerce websites allowing them to focus their energies on more core engineering initiatives and performance, instead of figuring out ways to make their sites more functional. According to Magento in 2017 there was a 300% increase in extensions sold in the marketplace, 400% growth on orders placed within the marketplace, and 600% traffic increase to the marketplace. Magento strongly urges that merchants and partners continue to collaborate and use the marketplace to get that custom functionality and user experience that customers are looking for whether B2B or B2C.

Cloud. What Cloud? Magento has dropped the marketing distinction between Magento Enterprise and Magento Commerce Cloud Edition. Magneto is so passionate about the value proposition of “Cloud” they are emphasizing the very strong value proposition as a part of the core offering of Magento. It’s all just kinda called: Magento Commerce. Digging into the Magento developer docs can help those both marketing and technology-inclined members of merchant teams understand the distinctions. Check it out.