Open Source eCommerce: Drupal and Ubercart or Magento?
It seems as though ecommerce and open source technology infiltrated the online business industry equally as fast and as furious in the last five years. As a result, many businesses are now utilizing these types of 24/7 web-selling solutions in a variety of lucrative ways. Of the many open-source options available, Drupal and Magento seem to have risen to the top as the most popular e-commerce solutions being used today.
As new technologies breed new demands in the world of ecommerce, the push to create and deliver cost effective and efficient web applications continues. So which ecommerce solution is better: Drupal and Ubercart or Magento? In this article, we will examine the features currently being offered by each application, see what makes each solution unique, and hopefully help you determine which platform is best for you and your online business.
The first application we’ll examine is Ubercart. This solution utilizes a robust open source application and is specifically tailored to link with Drupal, which is considered to be one of the best technologies that many websites are using today. The combination of Drupal with Ubercart is a highly efficient scheme that makes for a magnificent internet shopping experience for customers. Developers utilizing Ubercart are able to integrate or enhance any type of feature your online shopping store is using. Ubercart has also been tagged as a one-stop, complete ecommerce solution for all types of internet marketing requirements. Currently, Ubercart offers the following list of notable ecommerce features:
- Configurable product catalog
- Flexible product creation system
- Flexible product attributes system
- Single page checkout
- Automatic account generation (anonymous checkout)
- Simple order processing
- Simple order creation and editing
- Integrated payment system
- Activity logging
- XML import/exporting
The combination of Drupal and Ubercart is said to be a powerhouse ecommerce solution. Having been built on Drupal and fully integrated with Drupal’s core systems helps to strengthen the power of both Drupal and Ubercart together.
The Drupal platform is extremely search engine friendly, providing for URL optimization, smart.htaccess and a number of other contributed modules that enhance a website’s SEO. When it comes to ecommerce, nothing seems more important than security. Maintaining a secure and trusted platform for your customers and their private information is essential. Drupal, is considered to be a very secure application framework. Developers consistently work to keep and update code so that the data on your website is safe from hackers.
In addition to being SEO friendly and secure, Drupal’s framework is a powerful and versatile content management system that allows users and developers to do more with less. Drupal was developed to be a community site. As a result, more features become available that work to extend, customize and help enhance the user experience each day.
Presently, Drupal is a bit easier to initialize because it has a new installer that can basically aid you through the whole installation process. Drupal utilizes any languages that you desire from the start and it is very easy. You will just have to import translations of the Drupal interface and you are good to go. Another efficient procedure that can be done in a quick manner is posting content. Drupal can also maintain your website menu by utilizing the easy-to-use system of drag and drop. You can modify your platform and move contents by moving blocks.
Another thing that can be attributed to Drupal is the enhanced multilingual interface support. This characteristic can be utilized to make translation automatic on the verge of installing a new module or even incorporate a new set of language. There are tons of Drupal modules that can be used while utilizing granular control. Drupal 7 merges necessary modules such as Access Rules and Throttle into the core to be able to help configure and enable an easy installation process. The latest interface will supplement a new layer of database and has the capacity to supply a vast array of support to any kind of database platforms.
In essence, Drupal and Ubercart work together to provide a top notch ecommerce solution for customers to enjoy a secure, dynamic and fruitful online shopping experience.
The Magento Community Edition is the free, open-source platform offered by the company. The Community Edition is unsupported and it is highly recommended that only the tech-savvy, non-mission critical utilize this version. However, as Magento has been around for quite some time, there are a number of Magento enthusiasts around who have contributed quite a bit to the platform, making for a substantial open-source, free ecommerce solution.
The Enterprise Edition (paid for version) of Magento, while also open source, is supported and offers a number of rich features including, but not limited to:
- Rich merchandising
- Full-page caching
- Persistent shopping cart
- Rewards Points
- Call Center Functionality
- Private Sales
- Store Credit
- PA-DSS Certification/Payment Bridge
- Staging, merging and rollback of content
- Price and promotion permission
- Return Merchandise Authorization (RMA)
- Gifting Options
- Minimum Advertised Price
- Gift Registry/Wish Lists
- Marketing Campaigns/Promotions
- Content Management Systems
- Customer Account Management
Depending on which platform you decide to go with, Magento offers a broad variety of options for ecommerce solutions. Regardless of the Community or Enterprise Edition, however, it seems that Magento has focused more of its efforts on the shopping experience and ecommerce aspects of their platform.
When determining which web application is right for your business, consider the differences between Drupal/Ubercart and Magento. If you are looking to offer a full website experience in addition to selling products online, Drupal and Ubercart might be something to consider. If an online store is your main focus and you have enough capital to invest in the Enterprise Edition, Magento might be the way to go. Either way, always do your research to see what any platform of interest if offering at the time to make sure if it the right fit for your business.