Seven years have passed since the Magento 1.0 release. Over this period of time the market leading e-commerce platform has been a strong companion for many online retailers and will continue to be a key player in the coming years.
Tuesday 17 November saw the release of the much-awaited Magento 2.0 platform. Two new editions have now been released to the general market, Enterprise Edition 2.0 and Community Edition 2.0.
We’re here to tell you about all the new exciting features that can be found in these editions for merchants, partners and developers alike.
Important changes to licensing and pricing
Magento 2.0 is now licensed per site (instead of per server). This is good news for larger businesses that need to scale additional infrastructure during peak user times. This is also more supportive of platforms hosted in the cloud or on dedicated hardware.
Looking ahead, Magento licenses will start to align with gross merchandise sales volume, meaning that you will not be punished for being smaller scale.
Magento’s roadmap for 2016
For those worried about what this new platform has in store, Magento will lay down a quarter-by-quarter roadmap, starting in 2016. This is great news for both merchants and solution providers, as in the past Magento has not always been so open with future plans.
Some of the features we’ve heard about for 2016:
- Elasticsearch support
- Content staging
- B2B specific enhancements
- Personalization capabilities
- Enhanced analytics capabilities
Magento 2.0 simplifies the updating process by making it easier to obtain upgrades and patches. This future-proofs investments by reducing the overall upgrade costs and reducing the time needed by previous expansions.
For solution providers like ourselves, this means we get more time to focus more on adding customer value rather than managing customer upgrades.
Overall performance and scalability
The new platform now offers 50 percent faster page loading times across catalogue and checkout pages, greatly benefiting users and improving conversion rates.
Community Edition has been brought up to speed with Enterprise, with many performance-enhancing features that come right out of the box. Like Enterprise, Community Edition will now provide caching capabilities and optimised code and images for faster loading. It also features integrations with Paypal and authorize.net payment gateways.
Enterprise Edition users will be pleased to know that the platform has been built to ensure high availability with standalone master databases along with multiple slave databases. Enterprise Edition also integrates with WorldPay and Cybersource.
Modern technology stack and modular application architecture
Magento 2.0 features “next-generation architecture” which means easier customisation, faster time to market and greater deployment flexibility to cloud environments. It also features a greater modular code base than its predecessor, which creates more options for implementation.
You will have the ability to customise specific areas of the application without having any impact on other parts. For example, making an improvement to your product catalogue will have absolutely no impact on your checkout.
Technologies supported in Magento 2.0:
The vastly improved administrator UI
One of the most-discussed changes for 2.0 was the refreshed administrator user interface (UI). Things have moved quite a bit to enhance the user experience. The new UI is widely customisable for merchant users, with drag and drop grid columns for improved merchandising and product catalogues.
Through the new UI, day-to-day tasks should now be easier to complete. The step-by-step product wizard speeds up product creation and the import capabilities are reportedly four times faster than before.
What we liked:
- Customisable/ saveable views
- Personalised back end
- Product creation wizard
All-in-all, the admin UI changes for 2.0 will make your life easier, creating a better user experience and vastly improving the product creation process.
Our thoughts are that Magento 2.0 is an exciting new chapter. We’re confident that many businesses will look to make the move in 2016 as more information is provided in the roadmap.
The first few months often sees developers get to grips with the new features and capabilities of the platform, minor patches will be released removing any remaining small bugs.
We will continue to inform our readers about any newsworthy releases or changes to the Magento platform.