Ecommerce has become a booming industry and the importance of understanding the tools and technology involved in development is becoming increasingly important as more and more of the world’s business is being conducted electronically. In this field, tools such as Magento, WordPress, Joomla, and Drupla are among the most popular platforms used in development. Knowing how and why these platforms are used is necessary to understand how the job of creating and maintaining this trillion dollar industry.
The goal of e-commerce development is to create digital storefronts to sell products and services to consumers over the internet. E-commerce platforms are used to maintain this storefront and handle various types of data associated with the buying and selling of goods. An e-commerce platform is a software technology that allows you to build these storefronts. Most platforms are based off a common programming language such as PHP, Java, or .net. Most e-commerce platforms come integrated with a variety of developer tools such as an API that allows for a developer to add additional functionality to a site.
E-Commerce platforms may come fully integrated or composed of many parts that work together. Magento ecommerce, for example, is a fully integrated open source e-commerce platform built on PHP that functions as a content management system, a product information management system, and also a b2b (business to business) and b2c(business to consumer) storefront framework. Magento is designed to be completely mobile friendly and also has social media managing capability.
Another popular platform is called Joomla. The Joomla platform is also built on PHP and is highly flexible with thousands of free extensions and very powerful web application building tools. Joomla also offers content management, but many of the best features of an e-commerce platform like product management come in the form of extensions and are not pre-packaged.
Drupal is an open source PHP based website development tool. Like Joomla, content can be added right away , but many of Drupal’s best features come in the form of modules and are not pre packaged like with Magento. The learning curve for Drupal is also very steep, however, once the necessary skills are acquired, websites can be created quickly and are much more tailored to user needs.
Finally, WordPress is one of the leading blogging and CMS platforms available. It’s also an open source PHP-based platform with thousands of plugins and themes available. The E-Commerce plugin for WordPress offers similar functionality to Magento with respect to the actual selling of products and services. WordPress is known for its customization capability and for its ease of use. Websites can be built extremely quickly while being fully responsive and mobile friendly with the same functionality as top professional sites.
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