Magento Enterprise Ecommerce Platform Review

magento-enterprise-review-logoLooking to create or migrate an ecommerce store? This Magento Enterprise review will help you learn the fundamentals of the platform, as well as your store’s fit with its features and functionality.

Want to know how other platforms measure up? See our Magento Community ReviewMagento Go Review, or any of our 17+ other ecommerce platform reviews here.
 

Magento Enterprise Review: What kind of merchant should use the Magento Enterprise platform?

Everyone knows about Magento. The company was launched in 2008 and now offers three unique versions of its software: Magento Go, Magento Community, and Magento Enterprise. While Go is suited for smaller retailers, Community and Enterprise are geared toward medium- and large-sized retailers. The primary difference between the two? How tech-savvy the client needs to be.

Magento Community is a free open source solution, meaning its code is completely customizable to your store’s needs. Unfortunately, that means you’ll also need to be extremely well-versed in code (or have someone on staff who is) in order to configure your store the way you want it. Magento Enterprise, on the other hand, offers a complete ecommerce solution, including PCI compliance, tax calculation features, return management modules, loyalty programs, email marketing, and much more. It’s more geared toward retailers who want an all-inclusive, hands-off package. It also includes 24-7 expert technical support, in case you need help along the way.

Magento Enterprise and Magento Community, unlike Magento Go, are not hosted by Magento itself. If you go with Enterprise, you will need to purchase a separate hosting plan relative to the size store you wish to operate. Because of this, there is no limit to the number of products you can upload (though it’s important to remember: the more server space you take up, the more you’re going to pay for hosting.

In a nutshell, Magento Enterprise is best for medium- and large-sized retailers with high sales and deep pocket books. Magento Enterprise’s pricing looks like $15,550 a year, and the premium version runs upwards of $77,000 annually. One of the biggest reasons retailers choose to cough up these high costs for Magento Enterprise is its advanced marketing capabilities – in particular, its ability to segment customers. This allows you to treat unique groups of customers differently so you can give them incentives, invite them to special sales, and do more to encourage buying on a personal level.

Opening a Magento Enterprise store puts you in company with current clients like Nike, Vizio, Toms, and OfficeMax.

Ideal for: Medium and large-sized retailers who bring in significant sales numbers annually.

ecommerce-platform-comparison-migration-guidebook

Magento Enterprise Review: Positive Magento Enterprise Features 
Ecommerce Platform Comparison: Good Magento Enterprise FeaturesFeature Grade
Handles large numbers of SKUs and products seamlesslyA
Full-page caching: Results in fast loading times no matter how many products are loaded inA
Offers backup and rollback options if you need to make a change or go back to a previous versionA
Easy-to-use tax calculation featuresA
Fast checkout processes with multiple options, including guest, customer login, new user, and PayPal checkoutA
Advanced permissions and user roles (multiple store admin logins)A
Built-in gift wrapping optionsA
Top of the line, advanced marketing capabilities (ex. customer segmentation, email marketing, etc.)A
Private sale capability: you can offer select sales for certain customer segmentsA
Built-in PCI compliant codeA-
Gift registry featuresA+
Point systems and loyalty programsA+
Built-in return management system w/ gift cards and creditsA-
Automatic up-selling and cross-selling functionalityA+
Included Magento technical support (not offered with other Magento versions)B+
Easy set-up and configuration – you don’t need to be a developer to understand or customizeB+
Included mobile-friendly version of your storeA

Magento Enterprise Review: Negative Magento Enterprise Features 
Ecommerce Platform Comparison: Bad Magento Enteprise FeaturesFeature Grade
Expensive, especially compared to Magento’s free Community version (where all the costs for extensions and installation comes up front)C-
Not open source, so you won’t have access to the full code of the siteC-
No built-in blog (you’ll need to install an extension for that)D+
Not hosted by Magento (you will need to purchase a hosting plan on your own)C+
Confusing admin interface (many customers report a less-than-user-friendly backend)D+
Poor documentation of functionality and processesC-

You can check out just about all of Magento Enterprise’s features here.

Magento Enterprise Review: Notable Store Examples

Nike

Warby Parker

Zumiez

Magento Enterprise Review: Bottom Line

Unlike designer clothing, you get what you pay for with Magento Enterprise, and it’s a lot.  As one of the most popular ecommerce platform providers in the world, Magento has pulled out all the stops with its Enterprise edition. Magento Enterprise offers a plethora of unique and game-changing features that can help your store run smoothly and add value to your bottom line. From customer segmentation, private sales, and built-in loyalty programs to fast loading pages, easy checkout processe,s and more, Magento Enterprise offers many benefits you can’t find with other platforms.

Magento Enterprise isn’t for everyone. Despite its power, speed, and functionality, Magento Enterprise’s high licensing costs significantly limit who can take advantage of this software. Enterprise is best reserved for medium- and large-sized retailers who have a lot of product SKUs, a large IT budget, and a high number of annual sales. Only then is it worth the up-front costs.

Magento Enterprise Ecommerce Platform Comparison Grade: A

View the master list of our ecommerce platform comparison to make the most informed choice when choosing your ecommerce platform software.

How do you think Magento Enterprise stacks up against the rest of the market? Have your voice be heard and your opinion known!  Email jon@cpcstrategy.com and request to have your experience be part of this Magento Enterprise Review.

*Note: Grades are subjectively based on analysis and comparison to other ecommerce platforms, based on availability, significance, and functionality of the platform feature and overall value.

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About the AuthorJon Gregoire is the Director of Demand Generation at CPC Strategy. Jon heads up email marketing, content strategy, co-marketing, and revenue cycle efficiency. A UC San Diego grad, Jon is a Chicago native and full-time San Diego tourist. He enjoys Bear Grylls-like backpacking trips, archery, weekend getaways in Southern California, watching his beloved Chicago Bears, and bidaily coffee consumption. Want to pitch a story? Reach out directly at jon(at)cpcstrategy.com. See all posts by this author here.