In 2021, it is expected that about 27.2% of the world population will shop online at least once. A lot of potential customers out there, right? As eCommerce is becoming the new norm, digital businesses seek out ways to thrive in this competitive landscape and position themselves as leading trend-setters. To do that, companies need to realize the power of digital transformation and how they can embrace it in order to support the modern demands of speed and accessibility that customers require today. This starts with leveraging the right tools for building robust digital assets. One of these tools is represented by eCommerce platforms, which are getting increasingly popular for businesses that seek to deploy an eCommerce system. Drupal Commerce and Magento are two of the leading eCommerce solutions on the market and are often seen as direct competitors in the industry. This article provides a side-by-side comparison of these two platforms in regards to technical capabilities, development, costs, scalability, security, and mobile responsiveness. Hopefully, this information will help you narrow down your choice in order to ensure that you choose the best fit for your business needs. Key eCommerce Capabilities Enabled by Drupal and Magento Drupal Commerce was released in 2011 and offers an open-source application framework that supports retailers in building and managing inventory, track orders, or handle payments. Magento's initial release was in 2008. This PHP-based eCommerce site provides high levels of PayPal protocol integration and supports 12 worldwide payment gateways. Both platforms offer, through native features or third-party add-ons, the following benefits: Intuitive, easy-to-use user interface and control panels. No technical knowledge is required to customize and edit basic features. Full-featured CMS that supports social sharing. Business-centric structure for online stores. Native integration of inventory-driven advertising material Integration capabilities with third-party analytics, invoicing, or quoting solutions One thing to keep in mind is that neither of these eCommerce platforms is a "plug and play" solution and making the most out of their potential may require further expertise. Headless eCommerce The headless version of Drupal Commerce has been in the spotlight in the last few years. This new initiative is an eCommerce solution that stores and delivers content without a front-end delivery layer. It's an API-driven implementation that transforms eCommerce functionality, making it available across a wide range of potential host environments. A headless eCommerce model inclines towards a more SaaS-oriented, platform-agnostic solution that allows for better employee adoption and considerable time savings across IT departments. When it comes to Magento, the open-source eCommerce platform, headless eCommerce is equally prioritized. Both Drupal Commerce and Magento are supporting headless models as the future of eCommerce. Pricing Drupal eCommerce's technical cost of entry is free. However, depending on scope and scale, the costs of developing and maintaining performant and secure eCommerce servers might reach tens of thousands of dollars. Drupal Commerce project costs are directly proportional with a business needs for specific development architecture, module integrations, custom theme styling, or particular feature integrations. Magento's newer modules are not offered as open-source and upgrading from Magento Open Source to Magento Commerce might be challenging. From this financial point of view, Drupal Commerce seems to be a clear winner. Scalability Drupal Commerce has relevant capabilities of staying highly performant at scale. However, this CMS platform does not provide out-of-the-box database sharding and it can only be implemented on a third-party basis. Drupal Commerce has lower requirements than Magento Commerce when it comes to the web server—the minimum required RAM for PHP is 64 MB and production systems usually require 128 or 256 MB. Drupal Commerce-based implementation splits the eCommerce experience across three related Drupal domains. As a result, scaling is better, bottlenecks are eliminated, and the content and purchasing experiences are efficiently separated. On the other hand, Magento's cloud hosting solves a large number of scalability issues, although at a higher price. The minimum RAM requirement of 2 GB will probably not scale well and distributed networks or caching may need to be deployed with greater care to keep up with the heavy load. Security Drupal is proven to be the most secure CMS and Magento's infection rate is much higher than Drupal's. From the point of view of security, Drupal Commerce is a winner for businesses that want to prioritize secure platforms. Source: Sucuri.net Mobile Responsiveness As most websites transition to a mobile-first approach, eCommerce platforms that prioritize mobile responsiveness are a must. Fortunately, both Magento Commerce and Drupal Commerce provide robust mobile capabilities to satisfy the need for accessibility and performance. Drupal Commerce's themes allow building a fully responsive design for eCommerce websites and offer screen flexibility for creating versatile experiences. The most popular themes like Corolla or eStore provide: Multi-level responsive header menus Custom layouts and color options Box shadow and background textures Custom field additions Magento Commerce is close to Drupal when it comes to mobile optimization capabilities. Its responsive web design features help users create optimal viewing experiences for multiple devices. Magento Blank or Luma are out-of-the-box themes that deliver a fully responsive design. Who's the winner for eCommerce? While both Drupal Commerce and Magento Commerce are reliable options for a digital company that wants to thrive in the eCommerce market, every business has its own unique needs and requirements. Choosing the software that best supports these needs is a process that involves a lot of research and planning. If you want to speed up this process and ensure that you reach the right decision, don't hesitate to contact Optasy for professional Drupal and Magento 2 services in Toronto. Discover which platform is most suited to provide a robust eCommerce experience for you and your customers. Photo credit: Mark Konig on Unsplash.
Raluca Olariu / Apr 06'2021
RADU SIMILEANU / Dec 21'2018
RADU SIMILEANU / Apr 10'2018
How many web development challenges can the Laravel PHP framework help you solve? How much easier/faster does it make it for you to tackle common developer tasks? These are the 2 main questions that we'll try to answer in this blog post here. For the faster you'll be solving inevitable problems rising during your web app's development process, the more time you'll gain for sparking your creativity working on the app-specific logic! So, speaking of the common development challenges and how they can make the best criteria for choosing your most suitable web framework, let us enlist them! Outlining, as well, how precisely Laravel can help you easily overcome them: 1. Addressing Technical Vulnerabilities The challenge you're facing: fixing technical (and therefore “security”, as well) vulnerabilities that will inevitably “infiltrate” your web app during its development process (e.g. cross-site scripting, SQL injection etc.) Laravel's solution: it comes equipped with a shield against all major security vulnerabilities its codebase has been constantly examined and monitored by hundreds of developer eyes it restricts unauthorized users' access to your apps' crucial data or paid resources 2. Error and Exception Handling The challenge you're facing: configuring your app so that it properly handles errors (data-entry forms being the most frequent “error generators”) triggering prompt notifications (error messages) to let the user know that he/she has entered incorrect data Laravel's solution: error handling is already configured moreover, the PHP framework already incorporates the Monolog logging library, a powerful support for a multitude of long handlers it runs regular updates in order to minimize errors on your website/app 3. Creating a Custom and Secure Authentication and Authorization System The challenge you're facing: putting together an user authorization and authentication system so that unauthorized users shouldn't gain access to your app's paid resources/critical data Laravel's solution: it puts at your disposal, right out-of-the-box, everything you need for building your authentication system in addition, it makes structuring your authorization logic very simple it grants you full control to all the needed resources 4. Separating Client Side/Presentation Code from Server-Side/Business Logic Code The challenge you're facing: helping your web designers “grow independent” from their developer co-workers by making all the needed changes to your web app's HTML layout themselves also, by drawing a clear line between presentation and logic from an early stage in the web development process you'll be enabling developers, too, to fix bugs and to add on new features a lot faster Laravel's solution: being an MVC framework, the “presentation logic-business logic separation issue” is solved by default! 5. Configuring a Scheduler and Managing Scheduled Tasks The challenge you're facing: putting in place some sort of task scheduling system (and by “task” we do refer to automated database table cleanups, to regular emails to be sent out automatically to subscribers from your list etc.) Laravel's solution: its built-in command scheduler enables you to configure your schedule from within Laravel just one Crone entry on your server will be more than enough 6. Configuring Delivery Delays, Managing Queued Messages The challenge you're facing: putting together a message queue mechanism in the early stage of development for better handling that “heavy” load of requests (per second) that your web server's challenged with a queue mechanism that should minimize risks of data loss and improve page loading time by speeding up web requests Laravel's solution: its queue services “spoils” you with a unified API, irrespective of the queue back-end type 7. Scheduling Automated Tests With Laravel PHP Framework The challenge you're facing: initializing automated testing sessions, which are much more time-effective and usually more accurate than the standard manual ones Laravel's solution: luckily for you the Laravel PHP framework comes with out-of-the-box PHPunit tests and a phpunit.xml file moreover, it's equipped with functionalities enabling expressive testing by simulating common user behaviors (link clicking, filling out forms and so on) 8. Configuring URL Routing The challenge you're facing: defining a clean and simple URL routing so that your app should clearly understand the user's intention, specifically which page he/she'd like to navigate to Laravel's solution: you'll find all your Laravel PHP framework's routes in its app/Http/routes.php file (don't worry, it will load by default) the basic ones accept Closure and URI, allowing you to easily configure your routes 9. Integrating Your Web App With Mail Services The challenge you're facing: building a system sending out notifications to your subscribers following key events Laravel's solution: it provides a simple, yet powerful and clean API over the SwiftMailer library it also provides you with drivers for Mandrill, SparkPost, Mailgun, SMTP, Amazon SES, Sendmail, PHP's mail function; a “plug and play” solution for your app to instantly send out emails either via a local or via a cloud-based service it also offers you support for sending out notifications (so not just emails) via multiple channels: Slack, SMS via Nexmo... 10. Integrating Backend Caches for Boosting Performance The challenge you're facing: boosting your web app's performance by integrating it with cache back-ends Laravel's solution: Laravel PHP framework supports robust cache backends such as Redis and Memcached it's built to use the file cache driver by default (storing the cached components in its file system) moreover, it's even configured to efficiently handle multiple cache configurations Summing Up The Laravel PHP framework does streamline your basic development tasks (turning them from “challenges” into simple “to Do” tasks) helping you gain priceless time! Time that you can invest in “crafting code”. Now we're more than curious to read your own thoughts about this web framework!
Adrian Ababei / Sep 15'2017
Adrian Ababei / Nov 24'2016
Every expert from every field has his or her own tools of the trade and web development is no different – web development tools are one of the most important factors to every project and these tools could mean the difference between finishing your project on time or passing multiple deadlines. Luckily enough, plenty of top web development tools are available for just about every platform. Here is our list of OS X apps which you should include in your web development tools box: Browsers for web development One of the most important tools for web development is a browser – you’ll need to view your website after you created it right? But it’s not so simple – you will need to test your website for many browser versions, including beta and nightly builds. With that taken into consideration, you’ll most likely need Opera Next, Chromium, Chrome Canary, Firefox Aurora, and Firefox Nightly. Koala Koala, apart from its cute name, is another nifty web development tool which is used to compile CoffeeScript, Compass, Sass, and LESS into a browser-compliant format. If you’re using any of these techs, Koala is definitely a must. Anvil for web development Anvil is an interesting free app which allows web developers to create .dev domains. You’ll see it as a new icon in the OS X menu bar and you can turn it on or off, create domains or add your projects to it. If you’re looking for a tiny web development tool to manage or work on your local websites with, Anvil is perfect. Keka When handling multiple files, you need a reliable compression service to help you along. Most web developers may use ortar, rar or zip but Mac has its own built-in feature to extract and manage these formats – this service is rather limited so you’re better off with Keka. Keka is a free open source OS X app for file compression and extraction. Keka supports zip, rar, ortar, ISO, DMG, Tar, Gzip, 7z and it can extract to PAX, CAB, EXE and RAR formats. Keka allows you to split compressed files into different parts of specified sizes, apply password restrictions or automatically delete source files after extraction or compression. Web development & Web Sharing Since Apple removed the Web Sharing option from the OS X system preference, you might want to install the Web Sharing plugin. This little plugin will allow you to host local websites under the local host address. Once you install it you’ll be able to see a new panel in System Preferences – here you’ll be able to switch web sharing off or on. File compression, One of The Very Top Web Development Tools for Mac OS X We talked about Keka before but there are two ways you can use it to compress files. You can either download this small web development tool and install the services contextual menu or you can drag and drop your files directly into the Keka app window. Sequel Pro MySQL is one of the most popular databases in the world – plenty of websites rely on MySQL for storing and managing databases. If you are using OS X, Sequel Pro is a must-have for web development. It’s a native OS X app built in Cocoa and it also features a nice and friendly GUI. With Sequel Pro you can create, filter databases, import, export, remove, create users and execute MySQL queries. The iPhone Emulator All web developers need to take mobile users into account when building their websites, hence the need for a web development tool that can be used to test websites for specific platforms. Devs can use physical tablets or phones or they can go for the easier option – a simulator like iPhone Simulator. All you need to do is just install Xcode from the AppStore and you’re done – you have another web development tool in your little toolbox. Icons8 If you’re looking to use icons, Icons8 is one of the top web development tools that you can use. Just install Icons8 and you’ll be able to search through its over 2800 collections of icons. Once you find something you like, you’ll be able to copy it to Finder, Xcode or Photoshop. Github and SourceTree Even if you’re building a small website or a presentation website, you’ll need a control version system to track your revisions and changes to the project’s code. Github is the most popular service for version control and you can install it on OS X as well. SourceTree is another mentionable service – both of these services are the backbone of any respectable web development agency. Poedit Poedit is the best web development tool you can use for translating websites into multiple languages. Not only that but you can translate plugins and Wordpress Themes as well with this little app. Automator Automator is a web development tool that’s pre-installed with OS X. This little app allows users to automate tasks such as cropping multiple images at once, creating thumbnail images, changing file extensions and renaming files in batch. Dash Dash collects documentation for a lot of the popular programming languages, including LESS, Sass, jQUery, CSS3 and HTML5. Users can search through code snippets, functions, syntax, and other valuable information.
Adrian Ababei / Apr 28'2016
PHP has been the fourth most popular coding language in the world for seven years straight. More than 200 million websites and around 82% of public websites are powered by PHP. PHP 7 Released PHP took a huge leap forward with the release of the first major update since 2004. PHP 7 boasts massively improved performance – up to three times better performance than PHP 5.6 when running WordPress. PHP 7 boasts other changes as well - return type declarations, reduced memory usage, the spaceship operator and many more. PHP also features some breaking changes such as the removal of magic quotes and the PHP safe mode as well as a number of new reserved keywords. Web apps such as WordPress needed a few touches in order to be able to support PHP 7 but now it’s fully compatible with the new programming language. While PHP 7 has been released very recently, it may take a few years until it’s widely adopted by the majority of websites. Most applications tend to take a few years to adapt to upgrades but we hope that the increased performance will make these upgrades come sooner. PHP 7 comes with a new and improved version of the Zend Engine, featuring numerous perks such as: General performance: The new PHP 7 is up to three times as fast as the older version Zero cost asserts Anonymous Classes Return and Scalar Type Declaration The null coalescing operator Removal of old and unsupported SAPIs and extensions Secure random number generator Many fatal errors converted to Exceptions Improved Exception hierarchy Consistent 64 bit support Abstract Syntax Tree Memory usage is significantly reduced
Adrian Ababei / Apr 05'2016
Most web development start-ups have the same problem – What programming language to pick? Which language should we specialize in? Technology selection can be a real drag, especially when dealing with larger teams of specialists with different favourites in mind. Here’s food for thought: do successful companies become successful because of the technology they used or the technology itself becomes popular because it’s used by a successful company? Currently, PHP is not a popular choice for web development start-ups – most web development teams opt for Django or Ruby on Rails but in recent years PHP technology has evolved substantially - even to the point of becoming a direct rival for Ruby on Rails or Django. PHP is actually an incredible tool for web development start-ups – it offers all the functionality of RoR at a much lower cost. PHP is great for web development projects which involve multiple components and rely on multiple tech solutions. Here is a list of reasons why PHP is a great tool for web development start-ups: PHP allows fast web development PHP is actually one of the fastest programming languages which you can use to code, deploy and execute. The whole language was designed on finding the fastest and shortest solutions to any web development problems. Apart from that, PHP’s lovely community has been moving it towards modular design. PHP frameworks offer libraries and bundles which are ready to use, mouldable and easily configurable. If you’re interested in using PHP for web development you should definitely check out the Sonata Project for the Symfony framework – it offers ecommerce tools, content management features, technical utilities and admin bundles which in turn enable web development companies to lower their work load and shorten their path to the finished product. PHP is cost effective Web development companies won’t have any trouble with finding replacements for their team members, hiring new members or project stuffing. PHP developers are much cheaper than developers specialized in other programming languages – this can lead to a more affordable and competitive finished product. Certain very useful tools are free for use with PHP – these include integration tools like Deployer, Phing Project, Capifony, the PHPUnit framework and the Composer dependency manager. Programming quality PHP offers plenty of educational materials and best practices materials regarding common or complex programming tasks. While some may voice criticism of PHP unpredictability and inconsistency it’s good to remind users that these are problems of the past. The newest versions of PHP offer great frameworks such as Symfony and Laravel and great efforts have been made to define precise basic coding standards and guidelines. Conclusions PHP is a great tool for any web development start up, given its guidelines, processes and conventions. A solid team with plenty of experience will get your start up going in no time!
Adrian Ababei / Mar 25'2016