Is Magento Still Enterprise?

April 18, 2016

This was an interesting read from @alanstorm – though I am a week behind. To be fair, I’ve been busy with the release of the Zaelab Magento to Hybris Conversion Kit. It’s worth catching up, especially now that the Magento conference is over, and reactions to what was shown there are starting to pour in.

I’m not a technical architect and will trust the opinions of the architects on my team, as well as those referenced in this post. However, I have spent most of the last 10 years listening to decision-makers, CTO’s, and E-commerce directors talk about what they want. Whether speaking with SkyMall or Black Diamond Equipment – Barney’s of New York, or Foot Locker – the consistency in what I’ve heard is hard to ignore. To varying degrees, they all want technology to get out of their way, to secure the operation of the online channel, and be allowed to focus more time on what makes them unique – their customers and their products.

Magento has been considered to be an “Enterprise Platform” only recently, prior to that it was relegated to small businesses and the large businesses who started with it. That’s no longer the case, and while it is rarely on the long list for a platform selection project in my experience, it’s acknowledged that quite a few large and successful businesses are on Magento. I believe that could change.

One reason for this feeling is performance. Other platforms are no stranger to performance issues – Finish Line had a rough deployment on Demandware, and a slew of issues has befallen early IBM Websphere Commerce merchants – oftentimes the details of the issue are not as clear as the headlines. But we do see consistent improvement in the platforms as time goes on – issues are resolved, clunky areas of the code are finally remodeled, and trust goes up. By all indications, Magento’s shifts in business approach, ownership, and direction are leading to a step backward in performance – something which does not bode well for their current or prospective merchants.

The post that is linked at the top builds upon an existing narrative regarding the backward direction of the platform, and an equally concerning – post by Dima Soroka, former founders/architects of Magento describe in great length some of the performance issues seen in 2.0.

I have other concerns – the planned release of a “B2B module” – which is being released at the end of this year (for the first time) – is one of them. As many digital strategists will attest, B2B isn’t B2C with cinnamon sprinkled on the top, as what I recently learned was the case with “Dutch Apple” pie.

It may sound like I’m biased – and let’s be clear, I am. However, these are not my inventions, observations, or analysis – they are coming from the mouths of industry leaders much, much smarter than myself. Magecore folks and Mr. Storm have a lot of their personal and professional selves invested in Magento – meaning their statements have an honesty reserved for only the most pious among us.

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