Magento Community v/s Magento Enterprise
Do you know what big brands like Nike, Samsung and Ford have in common? You guessed it, all of them use a Magento powered e-commerce website to propel their online business. Such is the reach and popularity of Magento!
With a total share of 20% of top e-commerce websites, it’s not surprising to see Magento dominating the market currently. A PHP based open source platform, Magento comes in two versions: Magento Community and Magento Enterprise.
Magento Community or Magento CE is a free open source edition of Magento.
Anyone can contribute or modify its core code, based on their requirements. With a flexible and feature-rich platform, it is preferred mainly by developers, tech-savvy merchants and small to medium businesses. As the name suggests, Magento CE has good support of the entire Magento Community. So in case you run into a problem, you need not worry, there are many people you can turn to for help.
Magento Enterprise or Magento EE, on the other hand, is the premium version of Magento.
With extended built-in features and functionalities, and a 24/7 tech support, Magento Enterprise Edition is ideal for enterprise behemoths. Its $15000 price-tag can seem a bit expensive, but when compared to the other versions of Magento, its extensive palette of advanced features with yearly maintenance included, makes the investment worth it.
A Note About Magento 2 – The New Kid on the Block
Magento 2 is the much hyped and talked about follow up product to Magento 1 that was released in the later half of 2015. Magento 2 has been re-built from the ground up using all the latest web application technologies and with many features being built right into this new platform, it provides a better out-of-the-box experience than it’s predecessor.
What’s with Magento Enterprise Cloud Edition?
Magento Enterprise Cloud Edition is the brand new product of Magento Ecommerce, launched on 12th April 2016. It is a PaaS (Platform as a service) specifically designed for Magento 2. It is a fully hosted, web based service that runs on Amazon Web Services (AWS) . Magento ECE is completely customizable, secure and provides scalable web store fronts.
What’s in it for the Magento merchants?
Earlier versions of Magento, all used the traditional SaaS (Software as a service) model. SaaS is multi-tenant i.e it has a rigid and a closed nature. Also, the merchants had to manage their own hosting, either via a hosting partner or using their own servers.
Magento Enterprise Cloud Edition removes this hassle altogether as it comes with cloud hosting from AWS and provides additional services too like New Relic monitoring, Content Delivery Network (CDN) and a lot more.
With the new PaaS cloud system, ECE allows merchants to tailor their technology quickly and effectively to what works best for them.
Magento ECE takes the load off the merchants as it is designed to handle large amounts of traffic. It is flexible, and thanks to Magento’s new Apache caching system, pages load faster, which keeps the customers happy and buying.
In short, ECE combines the best of both worlds- it not only makes it easy to deploy, maintain and scale but also provides the merchants with the flexibility to customise the solution thus retaining the core benefit of Magento.
When do you need the Enterprise Cloud Edition?
As you already know, Magento’s platform requires some coding ability. So if you’re just starting out or can’t afford a developer yet, then Magento ECE is not for you. Instead, you can opt for the free version of Magento i.e the Magento Community.
Magento ECE is suitable for medium to large businesses looking for a better and more versatile platform for doing online business. And like the self-hosted Magento Enterprise solutions, the price of Magento ECE (which is fully-hosted) entirely depends on your business size and needs, which might fall heavy on your pocket.
If you have enough money, are looking for more customization and features with a comprehensive technical support, then you should totally go for Magento ECE as it has everything you’d want from an enterprise software.
Magento Community vs Magento Enterprise: Which One’s for YOU?
Whether you’re launching your first online store or are planning to re-architect one using Magento 2, then you should know some key differences between the two versions to help you make a better decision for your business.
Let’s take a look at them!
|Features||Magento Community||Magento Enterprise|
|Scalability||YES||Better than Community Edition|
Need 3rd party add-ons for B2B
|Built-in support for both|
|Ability to handle large number of products||YES||YES better than community|
|Automated Email Messages||Require third party extensions for the same||In Built in EE|
|Visual Merchandiser||Possible with 3rd party extensions||Built-in|
|Search with SOLR||Few extensions are available now that provides SOLR in Community||Magento EE 1.8 and above supports Apache SOLR|
|Abandoned Cart Saver||Present as a separate downloadable extension||Present|
|RMA system||Need a third party extension to achieve it||In built in Enterprise|
|Security||No credit card tokenization or secured payment bridges||Enhanced Security. Has a PA-DSS payment bridge that meets industry safety standards|
Now, the above table might leave you thinking that the Magento Enterprise version outweighs its counterpart. But here’s a different take. Agreed that some features aren’t available in the community edition, but the Magento CE can get you started for free. Custom functionality can be included with the available extensions or tailor-made for your business, saving you the initial expense.
For small to medium scale businesses, Magento Community doesn’t disappoint. You get a solid platform to support your online store. Some Magento Enterprise features can be actually built by adding extensions to the existing free version. A Magento expert can be consulted to ensure smooth operation since the performance may get affected.
Magento Enterprise is made specifically for sites with large volumes of traffic and sales. It even enables you to host separate parts of your site on different servers. It includes advanced features like customer segmentation with targeted offerings, minimum advertised price, return management authorisation, price and promotion permission, an enhanced catalog and content management system, among a multitude of features. With such an arsenal of high-end functionality, Magento Enterprise can help you ignite your brand by taking your business a notch higher. But mind you, it comes at a price!
It might happen that after adding all the required extensions to your Magento Community store, your total expenditure may come close to or even exceed Magento Enterprise’s cost. Therefore, it is crucial to take into account factors like cost, performance, security and functionality before coming to a decision.
Both Magento CE and Magento EE are solid platforms for any business. It’s your investment capability, number of products, product complexity, expansion plans, that should affect the platform choice you decide to make.