Ecommerce boasts of an explosive growth story worldwide and is still growing. According to Statista, B2C ecommerce sales numbers are pegged at 1.92 Trillion dollars by 2016, worldwide.
All that growth is powered by able platforms developed to support ecommerce. As such, an Alexa 1 million top sites survey by Ahead Works declares Magento as the unbeatable, top ecommerce platform in the world.
Update: Magento is really good, but it’s resource heavy — in the sense that you can’t just plug and play, and it’s not WordPress, and it’s certainly not for the small guy. If you are looking for an easy to use ecommerce platform, you should check out Shopify.
Magento commands a market share of about 25.4% (Magento CE Edition) and another 4.4 % for the Enterprise edition.
Magento has everything going for it – including the thick community, 24 X 7 support, a huge mini-industry of sorts with themes, plugins, and extensions to meet the demand for the unsurpassable leadership position Magento commands.
Magento’s real power isn’t in the open source wonder that it is, although that’s admirable. The flexibility of Magento as an able ecommerce platform comes from the power – and the availability – of powerful extensions.
Here are a few handpicked Magento extensions for 2016:
Freshdesk is your support system built for any kind of web property you can imagine. For your ecommerce site, you’d need as much customer handholding and management as you possibly can, and Freshdesk helps you do just that. Freshdesk has some amazing extensions and integrations for many apps, and that includes Magento.
Ecommerce is scalable. However, the only way you can justify profitability is when you have infrastructure and manpower to manage your rapidly growing list of customers.
That’s expensive. But it doesn’t have to be, thanks to better and cheaper ways to manage customers.
While customer support becomes more important now, the ZenDesk extension, you can bring excellent, scalable, and fantastic customer support to your customers.
Regular stores have people walking out to greet customers; ecommerce stores have none of that. The best thing you can do to get closest to that personalized experience is to put up LiveChat. Your Magento store neatly integrates with LiveChat, and it pays to make real-time chats available on your ecommerce store.
The blog at LiveChat is also full of information on upselling, optimizing your ecommerce store for conversions, and more.
Social media isn’t for hawking products; it’s not for pitching and pitching. However, social media gives you plenty of impressions. It can help you leverage branding, engage with potential/incumbent customers, and drive traffic to your ecommerce store.
None of that is going to happen without a proper social strategy, relentless execution, and a huge time suck for ecommerce storeowners, as Dan Taylor of The Next Web writes.
Say hello to Onollo – an advanced social media management, automation, and publishing extension built for Magento.
Onollo helps you spend less time and effort on social media. Meanwhile, you now have your two hands and a less stressful time running your ecommerce business.
Store Manager for Magento
As an ecommerce owner using Magento as your platform, you could be pulling your eyes out of your sockets just to manage your ecommerce store (whoever said managing an ecommerce store was easy?).
That said, you’d need a way to manage products, customers, orders, Point of Sale (POS), and run store diagnostics often.
Store Manager for Magento helps with all of that. Plus, you get to work offline, mange product prices, configure products in bulk, manage inventory, and make use of built-in reporting.
Product Matrix By WebShopApps
No ecommerce business is complete without shipping and logistics. In fact, shipping closes the loop that your ecommerce store started.
You’d need a way to deliver products to your customers’ doors every time, on time. Rated as one of the top apps by the Magento User Community, Product Matrix for Magento helps you to define, manage, and deal with shipping. Work with any combination of prices, quantities, weights, and rules.
Did I mention that WebShopApps – the company that makes Product Matrix – is a platinum Industry partner with stellar customer support?
No one is going to look at a bunch of images, read some copy, and whip out wallets to buy. Products listed on your Magento ecommerce store could do with some social proof.
Yotpo – a product review enhancement extension for Magento – does exactly that.
Generate reviews (by users and previous customers) for the entire catalog or specific products. Also, send out emails to each customer to have them review products.
Olark Live Chat
Ecommerce stores have a reputation to leave users all alone, unlike a real store where customers get to meet and business owners get to greet.
Live chat brings in a personal touch to your eCommerce store. Olark Live Chat for Magento allows you to engage with your customers as they land on your store.
You can chat with your customers in real time, address issues, resolve support tickets, answer queries, or maybe just say hello.
WordPress Integration by FishPig
Your ecommerce store won’t stand a chance with the competition if you had no digital marketing strategy, which starts with a blog.
Since Magento doesn’t come with native CMS support, you’ll do well to marry Magento (your ecommerce super platform) with WordPress (the super, popular CMS).
WordPress Integration extension by Fishpig helps you connect the bridge. Keep your Magento theme and make a WordPress blog fit your theme like a glove. You can also tag blogs with specific products, and do a 1-click login from Magento’s admin console.
Delete Orders By MGT Commerce
Testing your Magento ecommerce store introduces a new set of problems for you – such a trial order, a test order, a storeowner account, a store manager, and more.
That meddles up your order system and you’ll do well without that hassle.
Delete Orders extension by MGT commerce makes your life easier and helps you delete those databases, payment modules, new features you tested, along with the test orders you’d have triggered.
Call it housekeeping, if you will.
SERP Editor By MGT Commerce
SEO is still the next best thing to sliced bread. Your Magento store can do with some help with organic search traffic and help you boost sales.
Ultimately, your ecommerce success depends on traffic, conversions, and sales.
Using the SERP Editor extension for Magento is a great way to make the draining task of doing ecommerce SEO much more fun and profitable.
Get SEO analysis and make your store sweat to get you sales.
Google Enhanced Ecommerce For Magento by Blue Acorn
You won’t get where you want to go without knowing where you stand.
Analytics is a critical component of business and marketing strategy since you’d need to make decisions going forward.
Google handpicked Blue Acorn to create a simple and powerful dashboard to help Magento store owners with Google’s Universal Analytics and Enhanced ecommerce integration with Google Analytics.
As if Google Analytics wasn’t good enough by itself, its direct integration with your store seals the deal.
What are your favorite Magento extensions? Did we miss out on any worthy mentions?
Shoot us a comment.