Getting started with Magento E-Commerce

Magento is a PHP based eCommerce platform by open source experts, Varien, and it’s fast becoming the program of choice for savvy developers wanting a flexible solution for their projects. Magento isn’t just limited to seasoned developers though; its ease of use has also made it a popular choice for those embarking on their very first eCommerce build. There is a bit of a learning curve when you first start using Magento so I’ve made a list of helpful sites for learning more about using this software.

The Magento Website

There are two options for working with Magento, the first is the free ‘Community Edition’. The second option is a is a fully featured version geared towards corporations, it’s called the ‘Enterprise Edition’ and comes complete with end-to-end product support and, among other things, a better CMS; it’s priced from $11,125 USD per year. Check out the feature comparison chart on the Magento site to find out which one is best for you.

The Magento website is also a great source for learning more about this software. The Knowledge Base contains articles about all the functions available and is community driven so the the information is up to date and relevant to situations that other users have encountered.

Magento Connect is a resource for free and premium add on modules to extend the functionality of the software and chances are you can find a solution here for adding the “bells and whistles” that you want for your site.

Two more information packed areas of their site are the Forums and Wiki.

Guides for Using Magento

These are specific guides to using Magento that I’ve encountered while learning the software myself that can be very helpful when getting started.

Spoox Web Agency has published a couple of guides that contain a lot of information. Their Magento Quick Tour will give you a good overview of the software. For a more in depth look try the Magento User Guide. Also if you choose to dive in more deeply they have the Designers Guide to Magento.

WebResources Depot has published an in depth user guide that will teach you how to set up a development store for learning the software and how to configure and use the administration interface. The Ultimate Guide To Creating E-Commerce Websites With Magento Part 1 and Part 2 will answer many of your questions.

Blasted Thing is a website dedicated to publishing articles about Magento on a daily basis. Written by Sam Davis, this site should be in your bookmarks if you are serious about learning Magento. It has new articles almost everyday that are “aimed at promoting and helping users’ in their quest to tame the beast of an E-Commerce platform.”

Nublue has two articles that will be very helpful in the beginning of setting up your online shop. One Click Magento Install Guide will have Magento installed in almost one click and will have you set up in no time. Using Magento Connect will teach you how to keep the software version up to date after it is installed as well as how to add additional modules.

How to Setup Multiple Magento Stores by Crucial Hosting is the source I used for setting up multiple stores on different domains using one installation of Magento. This article will get you set up quickly and easily.

MagJournal is a blog dedicated to all things Magento. Its’ got some great content too, covering SEO, hosting and themes. They also have a helpful Tips and Tricks section.

Installing Magento on Dreamhost
No doubt some of you will need to install Magento on Dreamhost, and this helpful guide by Webinade walks you through the entire process.

SEO and Magento
Making sure your website is SEO friendly is critical these days, and that goes for web shops too. Make sure your Magento build ticks all the right boxes so that you get all the love you deserve from Google. Learn more from Yoast.

Get busy

These guides should keep you busy for hours. When you choose to enter into the e-commerce marketplace you can count on many hours of study and work. Setting up an online store is not a simple thing to accomplish. Be prepared to work hard and eventually your efforts will be rewarded. There’s nothing quite like having a steady online income and it can open up a lot of freedom in your life.

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