How to choose the best Magento extension for your e-commerce business

April 26, 2021 | 7 min read

How to choose the best Magento extension for your e-commerce business

1. QuickRead

The Magento platform currently holds a collective 20 percent market share of all websites for e-commerce, and this is a fairly decent number to boast about. Industry experts have speculated that this percentage will increase further with the introduction of the Magento 2 platform in November 2015. It is certain that we will see the 2.0 platform embraced by e-commerce websites all over the world as Magento 1.0 gets slowly phased out.

2. Why should you embrace Magento 2?

Although Magento 1.0 is often praised for its versatility, some of its shortcomings, including slow load speed and a lack of key administrative tools, have also been pointed out by users. We will discuss the features and capabilities of Magento 2 to answer the titular query, as well as to find out why you need endless scrolling, improved navigation, and lightning-fast checkout.
Magento 2 has characteristics that make it a better platform than its previous iteration overall. These new features also make it easier to compete with other well-known platforms such as Woocommerce and Shopify. For instance, the new platform is expected to run 20 percent faster on average, because full-page caching is now integrated into the platform, and pages are expected to load much faster (within 1-2 seconds). Without slowing down, Magento 2 also has the ability to manage several catalog pages very well. This is a positive thing now. If your site can run faster, it will lead to better search engine optimization and more sales.
The advantages do not stop there. The emphasis of this post, however, is not why you should turn to the new platform, so let’s just summarize the other merits of Magento 2: more intuitive checkout tool, more efficient admin interface, more mobile-friendly, and more out-of-the-box features.
What you should know is that when you make the transition to the 2.0 platform, you have nothing to lose. As we speak, vendors are constantly creating more and more extensions of Magento 2, and this total number of extensions will surpass and exceed the number of extensions of Magento 1.0 very soon.
Now, once you are convinced that you can run a Magento 2 shop, the next move you have to find out is how to choose the ideal extensions for Magento 2 to enhance your website’s ability. For instance, knowing how to choose from the current 27 SEO extensions on the Magento Marketplace is important. If you only depend on price as your guiding factor, it’s not effective.

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3. Magento 2 Extension Source: You Need from a Trusted Provider

There are several extensions that provide the same collection of features, so how do you know from which supplier to get the extension? To help you find a trusted Magento extension provider, here are some considerations that you should think about:

4. Think about the Purpose

Start by thinking about the purpose of a certain Magento 2 extension being installed. Why is it important for you? If you can answer well to why this extension is meant to be added, you will have effectively defined a certain advanced feature that you need for your Magento shop. Also, sometimes after you’ve found out a particular need, it’s normal for you to discover that more than one extension offers the functionality you need. Then compare these extensions side by side to zoom in on which product will best suit your needs without packaging other features that you don’t really need (and otherwise will be paying for).
Some of our customers, for instance, request a strong search bar to be introduced on their website. This also refers to consumers who, for example, auto parts dealers, have a long list of things to be sold at their shop. We would definitely look for extensions that can increase searches as well as extensions that can make pages load faster when we get this sort of requirement for our web development work (important for a multi-product store so that users do not navigate away due to a lapse in page loading).

5. Study of Magento Extensions Marketplace

At this point, you’ll see that there are dozens, if not hundreds, of extensions offering similar functionality. Magento Marketplace provides the largest database of extensions from all the best Magento 2 extension providers if you need the best Magento 2 blog extension, best Magento search extension, best Magento 2 marketplace extension, or something else entirely.
Go to the categories and select “Sales” > “Feeds Marketplace.” You can see that this category contains more than 190 extensions, each of which offers the requested functionality in whole or in part. To find out which of them could be useful, take the following steps:
  • Select the extensions according to significance. This will help you see which of the modules mentioned are Magento’s most common extensions among customers.
  • If the price and related costs are more important to you, sort the results by price and start investigating the extensions from those with the lowest price tag. Bear in mind, though, that even if the extension is free, it does not mean that its continued use is free.

6. Read Online Reviews

Reviews don’t always have to be lengthy, try on popular social networks such as Youtube, LinkedIn, and Facebook to search for them. Customer policy, privacy policy, the fundamental principles of the organization, and more are important aspects to look out for. You should feel more secure about using the specific extension in the feedback you come across. It’s also likely that you can’t find enough helpful feedback to help you make a decision, because Magento 2 extensions have been released only recently. In such situations, always reach out to the seller and hear from the horse’s mouth as you critically listen to their pitch and pick up the key points.

7. Discuss with Fellow Users Online

Forums or comment threads on social media are the best ways to do so. Reddit and Magento’s Twitter community, for instance. These locations are also free of spam from the seller and you will be able to get valuable opinions from current customers or other experts from Magento.

8. Check Frequency of Updates

It is appropriate to ensure that the extension is continuously strengthened. To find out if the developers are vigilant in delivering bug fixes, better versions, or newly added features that are required. You may be surprised to learn that certain extensions are no longer cared for, once published. Although several Magento 2.0 extensions are relatively new, to detect a trend, you can compare the update frequency for the earlier products of a supplier.

9. Look for a Money-Back Guarantee

You need to make sure that the paid extension completely meets your needs, particularly for Magento 2.0 extensions that are still considered relatively new. Just think about it, if the vendor is sure about their offering, they’ll be able to stand behind it with a money-back guarantee. You should make sure that there should be no less than two weeks of this money-back guarantee so that you actually have enough time to try the extension and get to know it.

10. Converse with the Provider

You should send a help-request ticket to their support team to see how they react to your queries. Is it a fast sale they’re trying to make? Are they serious in seeking to understand your issues and to answer them effectively? Before buying a paid extension, make sure that the after-sales service is included in the package. You can never know if you’re going to run into compatibility problems, particularly if your site is running on a custom template.

11. Test and try the Magento 2 Extension

If there is a demo version of the extension, make sure that you download it and test it. It’s even better if you can test both the frontend and backend aspects of the demo. You’ll want to make sure that the extension is simple to set up, runs smoothly, and meets your standards.
Moreover, with each and every shop, no extension on earth would be perfect, so you have to go a step further and think of making minor tweaks and trims to make it into an extension that really ticks all the boxes. For extensions that use the frontend, this is particularly applicable. What this means is that you will need to interact with the supplier regarding certain new functionality you need and negotiate the price of your “modified” product, while keeping in mind that the cost of paid updates would also need to be taken into account.

12. Final Steps

When the time has finally come and you’ve selected an extension, it’s time to learn how to install the Magento 2 extension and make sure it meets all your requirements. You may also be interested in considering options on how to manually install Magento 2 extensions to completely monitor the operation.
This is the time for assurance of quality. We suggest that you start working on the test server with a new module to check whether it is:
  • Successfully executing the promised functionality
  • Causes some dispute with other third-party integrations.
If testing has shown that the extension is bug-free and that there is no danger to the proper operation of the store, you can safely implement it in your live store and start using the necessary features.

13. Problems that may occur

Unfortunately, integration with business extensions does not only offer benefits. Rather, they may often raise concerns as well. The worst thing that can happen is the complete downtime (front/back-end) of the website. Conflicts with current functionality are among the less dangerous issues. In this case, it could be a partial or complete failure of either an existing extension or a new custom extension.
Depending on the configuration of the module and the information it processes, different data may be damaged. For example, if the new functionality relates to the processing of cookies (or other personal information given by your customers), the glitched module may infringe the rights of the consumer, thus violating the GDPR.

14. How to Solve Extension Problems

If quality assurance has found some mistakes, the first thing to do is to contact the support team of the supplier. This is when the free support span can prove useful!
Next, you should notify the provider of the problems that arise. If the provider is unable to address the problems, you should try to fix them yourself. However, often all efforts to fix the situation end up in vain. If this turns out to be the case, you need to search for another extension to replace the problematic one or build a custom module yourself.

15. Analyze results and choose the best option

You are now in a strong position to determine if a particular Magento 2.0 extension is worthy of your Magento store installation. There is no doubt that most of the best Magento 2 extensions come with a price tag, but since you can get priceless features from them, these top-notch items are worth the money.

16. QUICK TIPS FOR THE FINAL DECISION

Display the extension to your Magento developer so that he or she may have a look at a couple of code pages. Does that look like quality work?
Extremely cheap or incredibly costly extensions are not necessarily the best options. Cheap extensions can be a buggy that will cost you and your customers not only money but also time and nerves.
Often test the extension on your demo store for the money-back period. Make sure your test store is a copy of your live store with all your info, extensions, and settings. This way, you’ll see any issues, such as conflicts between extensions, frontend display problems, extension errors related to real store settings, or the number of items, and so on.

17. Final Thought

Choosing the appropriate module from those available on Magento Marketplace, as well as considering Magento Extension Development Services to extend the functionality of your shop, are both complex and responsible tasks. We hope that our guide will help any e-commerce business owner who wants to make specific changes to their online store to remove the pitfalls of this process.
The last piece of advice? If you have decided to start developing a custom Magento 2 extension, but are not tech-savvy enough to complete it, there is no better option than to hire experienced professionals who can help you at all stages of the development process. Feel free to drop the OSC a message if you have any questions about it. Our support team will gladly address any concerns you may have.

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Apr 26th, 2021|
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