“Cloud” is among the top ten confusing tech buzzwords in the last decade that everyone uses but doesn’t quite understand. The term “Magento Commerce Cloud” has become so popular in just a few years in the e-commerce market.
What is it? What are its pros and cons? And is it really suitable for all online merchants in general and Magento users in particular?
In this article, we desire to give you a detailed Magento Cloud review to help you make the right decision when choosing this platform based on the following criteria:
- Ease of use
- Administrative Suite
Overview about Magento Commerce Cloud
Magento Commerce Cloud is the most prominent name among PaaS (Platform as a service) for providing e-commerce capabilities. PaaS along with SaaS (Software as a Service) are two different models of cloud services. While the latter provides service to customers with restrictions in server-level configurations, the former enables users to access the source code and develop the software through the tools provided by PaaS companies.
Formerly known as Magento Enterprise Cloud Edition, Magento Commerce Cloud represents a managed, automated hosting platform for Magento Commerce software. This all-in-one solution is built exclusively for enterprise-level merchants with high sales volume or medium businesses preparing to grow.
Magento Cloud runs on Amazon Web Services (AWS) infrastructure, the most comprehensive and widely-used cloud solution. Including the best-in-class technologies, AWS improves development, monitoring, security and content delivery for your store. Recently, Adobe also added Microsoft Azure as an IaaS provider for Magento Commerce Cloud projects.
To sum up, Magento Commerce Cloud is a web-based business site platform hosted on Amazon Web Services. It enables merchants to run their online business lightning fast with enhanced security, requiring little to no effort and support.
Magento Commerce Cloud Pricing
As mentioned above, Magento Commerce Cloud is built exclusively for big brands. It integrates a lot of advanced features to help you quickly scale up your business. Therefore, it’s understandable that this version costs more than other Magento’s plans.
The fees for licensing and hosting are bundled together. According to their pricing model, you will be charged based on your store’s annual revenue. You may want to have a look at the table below to estimate Magento Commerce Cloud cost:
|Revenue per year (USD)||Annual fee (licensing and hosting)|
|0 – <1 M||$40,000|
|1 – <5 M||$55,000|
|5 – <10 M||$80,000|
|10 – <25 M||$120,000|
|20 – <50 M||$190,000|
Compared to normal eCommerce packages, those pricing is way too high. However, a lot of big brands are using this platform, so there must be reasons behind it. Let’s dive in to the detailed Magento Cloud review to learn more about its features and see if they are worthwhile or not.
Magento Commerce Cloud features
Every store owner wants to fill their website with high-quality images and videos. The more professional your site looks, the more trust from customers it will gain. However, it is a dilemma that high resolution pictures make your website load more slowly. Loading speed is the key factor affecting the conversion rate of an online business.
In order to solve that problem, Magento has integrated the Fastly Image Optimization (Fastly IO) technology for Cloud users. With Fastly IO, your images will be automatically optimized for faster website loading, as a result, your server is free to process orders more efficiently. Fastly IO supports 3 common images formats: PNG, JPEG and GIF, including 3 features:
- Force lossy conversion: convert lossless format like BMP, WEBP, PNG into JPEG/WEBP format to reduce the size of the images (60% – 70%, depending on the quality level specified in the Fastly IO configuration).
- Deep image optimization: this feature resizes product images. CMS images are not resized.
- Adaptive pixel ratios: by adding a “srcset” code for each product image, this feature enables you to deliver multiple image sizes and resolutions from one image source file.
Furthermore, merchants are capable of managing your website’s performance by an analytics software named New Relic for application performance management (New Relic APM). Your Magento Commerce Cloud account would include a licence key for this software without any extra fee. You can see many factors affecting your site’s performance like:
- Database queries
- Application, extensions, and external services.
- A flash sale or other web event
2. Ease of use
A lot of sellers find it difficult to build an online store using Magento Open Source, as most of them have no prior experience with website development. When it comes to Magento Commerce Cloud, it’s a different story.
Making simple changes to your site or customizing your homepage is no longer sophisticated with Page Builder – a drag and drop tool exclusively for Magento Cloud users. We would learn more about it in the “Administrative Suite” section of this article.
With high cost to pay, when using Magento Commerce Cloud, you may expect a premium customer support service. However, it will leave you disappointed.
Support is by far one of the biggest concerns with Magento Commerce Cloud. Magento Commerce Cloud is inferior when it comes to customer support in comparison with other eCommerce solutions for big brands like Shopify Plus or BigCommerce Enterprise.
If your site has not gone live yet (in other words, still in development), your support ticket priority is reduced. Hence, wait times can be extended to weeks. This can be frustrating and expensive to deal with during development. This problem has been mentioned a lot by users on Magento Community and TrustRadius:
- Source: user Shankx on Magento Community
- Source: user Kim Murphy on TrustRadius
In this case, you can only rely on Magento forum (community support). However, it will be hard for you to resolve your issues quickly and efficiently as you have to wait for replies. Plus, forums are also an unofficial source of information, so you would bear the risk of receiving incorrect, unnecessary or sub-optimal advice.
Magento Commerce Cloud is certainly a platform of high security. It has a shared responsibility model for cloud security, thus there are 3 parties contributing to Magento’s secure environment. Those are:
- Amazon Web Services (AWS): As Magento Commerce Cloud is built on AWS infrastructure, AWS is responsible for security of the network, physical security to the data centers hosting the Magento Commerce cloud environment, and environmental security to ensure proper power, cooling, and mechanism controls are in place.
- Magento: The platform is responsible for the security and availability of the Magento Commerce Cloud environment, the core Magento Commerce application code, and internal Magento systems.
- Customers: Customers also bear the responsible for the security of their customized instance of the Magento Commerce application running on the Magento Commerce cloud environment; the security of any customization, extensions, other applications, or integrations used in their system; and the security of their users and the granting of access to their configuration and application.
Fastly, which is previously mentioned for providing Fastly IO technology, also provides an additional security tool, which is Web Application Firewall (WAF). This enhancement can prevent unwanted traffic from entering your website. Previously, you had to source, actualize and purchase WAF to protect your store, but now it is integrated with Magento Commerce Cloud Edition.
Payment security is a big concern, and merchants are legally required to comply with PCI (Payment Card Industry) requirements. Otherwise, they would suffer from large fines, which can also result in losing their ability to process payments.
Luckily, Magento Commerce Cloud is PCI certified as a Level 1 Solution Provider. Magento Cloud merchants can easily speed up the process to attain PCI certification.
As expanding to global markets, your website needs to support different languages, multiple currencies as well as localized pricing and tax rates. Fortunately, all those features are now available on Magento Commerce Cloud. You can manage multiple sites for different countries from a single store or environment.
About languages, global stores have capacity to use accented characters and right-to-left text. It means that if your business is expanding to countries using Spanish, French, Italian, German and Portuguese, you are still good to go.
Another concern when your brand operates internationally is taxes. The Cloud edition supports fixed product taxes in the EU, or automatically calculates tax for transactions in the EU with VAT-ID validation.
Similar to the Open Source and Commerce editions, Magento Commerce Cloud’s environment is also highly customizable. It operates on a fundamental level as Magento Commerce and Magento Open Source. This means you can also assemble, deploy, and develop Magento extensions like in other Magento editions.
Deployment on Magento Commerce Cloud is done via Git (Git is the center of all code management, build, and deployment for your Magento Commerce Cloud stores and sites). It means that the greater part of the document framework on Cloud edition is read-only. Consequently, this poses a problem with some third-party integrations that you use. You are able to create special read/write areas on the server, but this can add some complexity to your development process.
Beside the storefront, you can also modify the admin panel to speed up your daily tasks and manage them more efficiently. This creates such a powerful admin experience when you monitor your business.
However, you should remember that further development results in extra cost which is quite high. Average hourly rates for Magento development varies from $65 to $150 per hour, depending on the experience level of the developer.
7. Administrative Suite
Inheriting from all Magento 2 core features, Magento Commerce Cloud is equipped with a rich Administrative Suite. These out-of-the-box features are extremely valuable to your business, especially when you want to execute complex growth strategies.
This is a Magento extension for Cloud Edition to help you create and design your content just by dragging and dropping pre-built controls. As a result, you can easily manage site content without any coding knowledge. This Page Builder extension is integrated into Magento Commerce Cloud by default, therefore, you do not need any extra work with installation.
There are a variety of content types in Page Builder’s menu like text, heading, button, image, video, product… as you can see below:
In addition to these, open source code allows you to customize Page Builder, like modify existing content types or create a new content type from scratch.
After finishing creating your content, you can preview what it looks like on the storefront before publishing.
As your business grows fast wholesales/B2B functionality is an essential function. Magento has integrated a ton of new built-in features to develop your business buyer experience:
- Easily create and manage company accounts, set up multiple buyers, and define their specific roles and responsibilities.
- Assign custom catalogs and price lists to specific B2B buyers receive contract terms when purchasing online.
- Efficiently manage quote requests and negotiate pricing terms using a streamlined online workflow.
- Accepting partial payments (payments on account) to boost sales.
- Processing larger orders smoothly (up to 300-line items out-of-the-box)
- Having access to a data-driven B2B dashboard with over 25 B2B-focused reports to better understand your customers insight.
- B2B buyers can quickly place orders online just by uploading CSV files, typing SKUs, or selecting products from pre-set requisition lists. If they used to order before, they have the option to quickly reorder or create a list of frequently purchased products.
In short, by taking advantage of those functions, your business can improve customer loyalty, save a huge amount of operating fee, and drive new growth.
This is a module to help you improve your customer’s product searching experience. In fact, ElasticSearch has been very well-known for its powerfulness as an open-source search and analytics engine. The stack of technologies includes auto-complete search, auto-correction for misspelled words, synonym results, a full-text search with all your website content as well as many other features. With this technology integrated, your store on Magento Commerce Cloud can absolutely boost conversion rate because consumers can search faster and more flexible.
It is a set of advanced tools that allows you to position products and apply conditions that determine which products appear in the category listing. You can just drag and drop or set position value to change the position of a product.
Customer segmentation and personalization
This feature creates personalized shopping experiences that significantly boost conversion rates by dynamically displaying content, promotions, and pricing to specific customers. It operates based on properties such as their location, gender, order history, lifetime purchase value, wish list items, and more. You can also target unknown site visitors based on the products they have viewed or items in their cart.
Via this detailed Magento Cloud review, you can see that Magento Cloud is a great option to choose for big enterprises. It has a ton of built-in features to help your business to quickly grow but still ensure capability for creativity to develop custom functions.
On the other hand, you are looking for an alternative to Magento Commerce Cloud, spare some time on our comparison between this platform and its top competitor, Shopify Plus.
If you are planning to migrate your store to Magento Commerce Cloud, LitExtension is there for you.
With our help, switching to Magento Commerce Cloud or any platforms is no longer a big deal. We offer an advanced automated migration tool that transfers all your data from your old shopping cart to a new one quickly, with high level of security and accuracy.
To have your doubt cleared in a blink of an eye, we provide a free Demo Migration feature for you to check it on yourself how the process works. Should you have any questions, please contact LitExtension Team!