Today, the world wide web offers several opportunities via different CMSs, to setup and run online stores. Anybody wanting to setup an online store must choose the right platform to do so. To choose the right platform, one must consider their needs and functionalities of the diverse CMSs available. The most popular and prominent CMSs for the purpose of e-commerce are Magento and Drupal. Both are open-source softwares and are unique in their own way. Let us see in what way they are different and for which kind of e-commerce ventures they are best suited:
Drupal, unlike Magento was built for the purpose of content management. So it is great for building extensive blogs, e-books, forums and etc. But even for an e-commerce venture, the software can be positively deployed with the use of the Drupal commerce module, which has core features such as dynamic product displays, ability to create product types with custom attributes, payment method API that allows many different payment gateways and etc.
What makes the use of Drupal for an e-commerce venture interesting, is the availability of a huge number of modules, giving a diverse range of functionalities, that can be integrated with a basic e-commerce website. This allows non-traditional e-commerce ventures to add features to their e-commerce websites, that can give a boost to their online sales and also provide a unique customer experience.
An example of such an e-commerce venture would be of EduKame, a European startup selling emotional and educational digital tools for children below the age of six. The venture started with a blog that spoke about emotional education for children and then expanded to a digital e-commerce venture that sells digital tools, provides online subscription to its digital magazine and at the same time kept and maintained its 2000+ blog posts at the same site. Along with these functionalities, the website has been designed as such that a fun and interactive user experience is delivered to the customer. The project made use of Drupal Modules such as Feed to import its WordPress blog posts into its e-commerce website.
The platform has been especially built for e-commerce ventures. That is, it provides a catalog, a cart and a one-page checkout in a basic website, along with the ability to integrate a diverse range of e-commerce centric extensions such as marketing, shipping, payment and etc. But if one wants another part of their business, say, something like a magazine subscription or an extensive blog, then one would need to make use of another platform which interacts with the Magento e-commerce website.
The best advantage of a Magento platform is its sheer ability to scale and manage stores on muti-channels. It can handle sku’s upto 1 million and provides a single admin page when it comes to managing your online sales on more than one websites. So, if you wish to create a website with only e-commerce-centric features, have scalability in mind and would like to manage your product sales on multi-channels easily, then using Magento is an ideal choice. Such features are especially useful for a B2B e-commerce venture as they only need basic e-commerce functionalities and want a robust and scalable platform to do so.
An example of a Magento e-commerce venture that has tapped its features well would be Bookpal, an American book seller for schools, businesses, non-profits and government entities. A B2B venture, with a catalog of 3 million book titles, it has tapped Magento’s ability to handle a large scale of products, very effectively.
Thus, keeping in mind one’s business needs and the kind of customer experience one wishes to create, the right platform for an e-commerce venture can be chosen.