Reading Time: 2 minutes

CDNs РContent Delivery Networks are the transparent backbone of the Internet and are responsible for content distribution. Each of us interacts with CDNs on a daily basis; when reading articles on news sites, shopping online, watching YouTube videos, or browsing social media feeds.

To understand why CDNs are so widely used, you must first understand what problem they solve. Latency is the annoying delay that occurs from the moment you request to load a web page to the moment its content actually appears on the screen. The CDN serves to overcome this problem.

In essence, CDNs allow you to speed up the process of transferring resources to load Internet content. By now CDN services have become a fundamental element that, to date, is used by the majority of web traffic, including traffic from major sites such as Facebook, Netflix and Amazon.

What is the CDN?

The delay interval is affected by a number of factors, many of which are specific to a particular web page.¬†In all cases, however, the length of the delay is affected by the physical distance between you and that website’s hosting server.

La missione della CDN √® ridurre virtualmente quella distanza fisica, con l’obiettivo di migliorare la velocit√† e le prestazioni di rendering del sito.

The CDN’s mission is to virtually reduce that physical distance, with the goal of improving site rendering speed and performance.

How to configure CDN in Magento 2

Configuring Magento 2 CDN РContent Delivery Network (CDN) is one of the advanced solutions to consider, when the performance of your site is too low. Web loading time is an important factor that affects your user experience, as is SEO. Unlike the full page cache, the Content Delivery Network (CDN) is not fully integrated into Magento 2, so you have to choose and configure a CDN on your own.

Therefore, in this post, we will see how to install a CDN on Magento to help you achieve incredible speed on the site.

Configure a CDN in Magento 2

  • In the Admin Panel, click on¬†Shops¬†.
  • In the¬†Settings¬†section , select¬†Configuration¬†.
  • Select Web under General in the left panel
    Open the Basic URL section and continue with the following:

In the Base URL for static View Files field enter the URL of the location on the CDN where the static view files are stored
In the Base URL User Media Files field , enter the URL of the JavaScript files on the CDN
Open the Base URL (secure) section and continues with the following:

In the Secure Base URL for Static View Files field , enter the URL of the location on the CDN where the static view files are stored.
In the Secure Base URL for Medium User field , enter the URL of the JavaScript files on the CDN.

When done, click¬†Save config¬†and that’s it!

Source: MagePlaza

Reading Time: 5 minutes

When it comes to open source E-Commerce platforms, there are many solutions to choose from and often this choice becomes quite critical.

We have already seen in one of our previous articles, Magento and PrestaShop and what their characteristics are.

But have you ever heard of Sylius instead? If not, in this article you will learn how it works and what features it has. I will also explain how to get started with this tool and the possibilities of extending its functionality.

What does the open source E-Commerce platform mean?

An open source E-Commerce platform is software for running and managing an online business, with direct access to the source code.

Generally these solutions are free, although obviously there are collateral costs. The costs you have to incur relate to hosting, development and personalization. We can say that you decide how much to spend on each process.

Another aspect for which you can choose, according to your needs is the functionality. In fact, being able to access the source code, you can add the features you need or modify the existing ones. This clearly offers great flexibility and scalability. Like other open source platforms, those related to E-Commerce are supported by communities which can certainly be a valid help.

Sylius for e-commerce

Sylius is an open source E-Commerce platform based on the Symfony framework.¬†It is built with decoupled components that can be used independently in any PHP application even if it doesn’t use Symfony.¬†Then you can decide whether to use the complete platform provided by its creators or take advantage of standalone elements to create a custom solution.

sylius-interfaccia

This E-Commerce tool is an API-first solution. This means that Sylius can be used as a backend for implementing JavaScript E-Commerce software such as a PWA or native mobile app. You can create an online store suitable for any size of business Рa small, medium or large business.

Is Sylius free?

Sylius is available in two versions:

  • Standard (free) using the open source MIT license
  • Plus (paid) with a commercial license with an annual subscription.¬†Its amount depends on the gross volume of sales you made with this E-Commerce platform.

In addition to standard Sylius features, the paid version contains enterprise-grade features such as multi-store (allowing you to sell products from multiple business units or legal entities), a loyalty system, and returns management.¬†Let’s now take a look at the functions of a non-paid solution.

Features of the free version

With Sylius Standard, you can create a fully functional online store with many useful features.

  • Order management¬†: each order is linked to the channel (e.g. webstore, mobile application) from which it comes and to the language used by the customer to carry it out.
  • Taxation¬†: You can use the right taxes for different products and billing zones.
  • Payments¬†: Support for many payment service providers.
  • Shipments:¬†¬†possibility to attach multiple shipments per order.
  • Product Reviews¬†: Thanks to this feature, your customers can leave opinions on the products they have purchased.
  • Product association¬†: you can suggest to customers the complementary items to what they are viewing.
  • Sylius Themes¬†: This is a great option when you have more than one channel for a single instance and you want each channel to look different.

To discover more features and possibilities of this e-commerce solution, access the Sylius documentation .

Who Uses Sylius?

This platform is perfectly suited to the needs of different types of companies: medium and large B2C / B2B companies, but also to startups with high development needs. Its flexibility and adaptability make it a platform that can be adapted to many different realities.

Why use Sylius?

Despite this roundup of features, you may still wonder why you should use Sylius? So here are 6 reasons for you:

  • Scalability¬†.¬†You can deploy Sylius on a single server or in the cloud on a self-scaling multi-server architecture, providing great efficiency for large projects.
  • Flexibility¬†.¬†It is possible to customize every part of this platform, thanks to its modern and well thought out architecture and the use of the Symfony framework.¬†You will thus be able to tailor your E-Commerce to your needs.
  • Ability to apply it on multiple devices¬†.¬†You can easily build native mobile apps for iOS, Android, or a PWA
  • Perfect for developers¬†.¬†This E-Commerce platform guarantees the highest code quality, has a solid test environment and uses business-driven development (BDD).¬†It means the tests are written in a business language which speeds up application testing.
  • Community.¬†There are more than four thousand developers, e-merchants and other specialists working with this tool gathered on the Sylius channel on Slack.¬†You can join them to ask for support or help others solve their problems.
  • Open Source.¬†You can participate in the development of this tool.

Sylius: a headless open source platform

Headless is a word that basically describes the decoupling of the front-end of your E-Commerce from the back-end. Simply put, what sets the headless model apart is the lack of control over how the backend data will be presented to the data to the customer. In the headless approach, the most important is the content that needs to be delivered to the customer, regardless of which platform they want to access and when. To make this possible (also in Sylius), companies use APIs to synchronize data and provide control to IT teams in terms of the technology used to interact with the customer.

Basically, while in traditional ecommerce, all marketing channels, such as blog posts, newsletters, etc., are designed to bring the customer directly to the site, with headless technology, it will no longer be necessary.¬†Purchases will be made directly from the platform through which the promotional message arrives to the customer.¬†Will it be a mobile app, a single page app, or some other system?¬†You don’t know, but the purchase will come by itself and that’s what matters!

Sylius plugin

The organization behind this platform has developed six open source plugins. One of them is the billing plugin which creates an invoice after a customer has created an order. Both the customer and the administrator can download this document.

In the Sylius Store you can find more than 80 different plugins and most of them are free.

  • There is the¬†Elasticsearch plugin¬†which provides the complete search mechanism, separate from the database.¬†It allows you to lighten the store’s resources.¬†In addition, Elasticsearch enables intelligent search and provides product filters.¬†A developer can easily create new ones, as there are helpful guides and guidelines for making them.
  • Another useful extension is the¬†CMS plugin¬†which allows you to add a content management system to your store.¬†Thanks to this, you can create eg.¬†a subpage with the regulations of your online store or a better homepage.
  • With¬†Odiseo’s SyliusReportPlugin¬†, you can add a reporting interface to the platform administration.¬†You can also easily create custom reports.¬†As for statistical data, you can also use the Analytics Plugin which adds Google Analytics tracking to your store, or the Facebook Tracking Plugin which allows you to add Facebook Pixel to track visitors who come to your website from this channel. of social media.

Have we already talked about Sylius plugins and what about integrations with external systems? You can run it via plugin (e.g. the aforementioned Analytics Plugin) or write your own custom integration.

Custom online shop

In this article I have shown you how Sylius is a very flexible system, which allows you to really do everything with your E-Commerce. The customization possibilities of this E-Commerce solution are its biggest advantage. With the help of Sylius experts, you can have an online store entirely tailored to your business needs.

So if you are looking for a useful tool that is easy to configure on both the admin and development side, Sylius may be the one for you.

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Magento 2 is the software and E-Commerce platform trusted by the world’s leading brands.¬†The undeniable advantages of Magento 2 make it one of the most used platforms.¬†Some typical benefits that should be named are an ecosystem of quality extensions and highly supported E-Commerce features.

In this post, we will therefore see how to update Magento 2, so that you can be completely autonomous in this.

Step 1: Back up your store

Creating backups for your Magento 2 site is a fundamental element because it allows you to protect all data through the Backup Manager, in case of changes or interruptions on the site.

Step 2: Activate maintenance mode

Once the backup is done, you should put your store in maintenance mode while updating. To enable maintenance mode:

php bin/magento maintenance:enable

This will create a new¬†var / .maintenance.flag file.¬†If you can’t disable maintenance mode, you can remove this file

Step 3: Upgrade to Magento 2

In this case, we will do an update to Magento version 2.2.1. See the latest versions on the Github download page .

Step 3.1 Pull package

First using the following command on the terminal / command-prompt:

composer require magento/product-community-edition 2.2.1 --no-update
composer update

Username and password might be requested like so:

aggiorna magento

Step 3.2 Clear the cache

Now it’s time to remove the cache, build.¬†Run the following command line in the root folder:

rm -rf var/cache/*
rm -rf var/page_cache/*
rm -rf var/generation/*

 

Notes:
You can install Memcached, Redis cache…, you should empty those caches manually.

Step 3.3 Upgrade Magento

Run update module, database schema

php bin/magento setup:upgrade

Step 3.4 Reindex

You should compile and re-index for better performance after the upgrade

php bin/magento setup:di:compile
php bin/magento indexer:reindex

Notes:
In Ubuntu / Debian Linux, when you encounter authorization problems, remember to insert sudo at the beginning of each command as sudo composer update.

Step 3.5 Disable Maintenance Mode

You turned on maintenance mode in step 2, now you need to turn it off. Run the following command line to disable it:

php bin/magento maintenance:disable

Step 4: Check the current version of Magento 2

After that, you can check the Magento 2 version by running the command.

php bin/magento --version

If the system shows the cache write permission error, add the following command to grant write permission to the pub and var directories:

chmod -R 777 pub var

Frontend login problems after update: how to fix

You may receive this message: ‚ÄúWe’re sorry, an error occurred while generating this email‚ÄĚ.

This is due to the read-write permissions for the web server. Run the following command to fix it:

find var vendor pub/static pub/media app/etc -type f -exec chmod u+w {} \; && find var vendor pub/static pub/media app/etc -type d -exec chmod u+w {} \; && chmod u+x bin/magento

Refresh the cache again.

rm -rf var/cache/*
rm -rf var/page_cache/*
rm -rf var/generation/*

Problem solved!
You have now updated your Magento!

How to choose the most suitable platform for your e-commerce
Reading Time: 3 minutes

When a merchant decides to undertake an E-Commerce business, the first challenge he encounters is to choose a platform.

In fact, there are many possibilities: Magento, PrestaShop, Woocommerce, Shopware etc, all have their positive and negative sides. But above all, each one has its specificities, which may or may not adapt to your needs.

As with many other products, it is not as easy as searching on Google for “the best e-commerce platform”.¬†There are many factors that should be taken into consideration before making this choice.

For example, you should consider the costs related to opening your online business, costs that are not only related to the price of the platform itself. Any additional functionality you may need will typically be provided by paid apps/extensions or by custom development. And this fact also requires an additional budget.

This is why it becomes essential to make the right considerations. You will find some key elements you should look into before jumping into a new ecosystem below.

Understanding your business and its characteristics

First, we must understand that all E-Commerce platforms provide more or less the same basic functionality. However, the various business models are unique and have specific needs.

This is why the requirements for an E-Commerce platform must cover more than just basic functionality.

So you need to understand what makes your business unique and how you intend to engage your customers.
One way, for example, may be to provide discounts for different goods, according to predefined rules. As a result, customers with a matching set of products in their cart should receive a discount. The discount system should include many factors that play a role in generating the final price.

In some rare cases, maybe only one thing is required in addition to the basic functionality provided by most platforms.¬†In other cases, there are at least a couple of other extra features that are a must for a merchant’s business.

Define the right e-commerce structure

Another example is related to site search. In general, we can outline two main categories of the E-Commerce store structure:

  • The first has as the main idea to “guide” customers through the catalog, use different configurators/wizards to create a correct set of products in the cart.
  • The second is the research-oriented approach.¬†An excellent example of the latter is a market like Amazon.

So, if your store is going to use the second search-oriented model, you’ll need a¬†well-organized search¬†on your website.¬†In this case, well-organized means support synonyms, stopwords, filters, suggestions, etc.

Also, it would be great to have AI-based research.

With these two elements of your business model, you can check the capabilities of the different platforms on the market. The main goal is to find a platform that covers the scenarios mentioned.

Stay one step ahead …

In addition to the functionality we were talking about above, it also makes sense to think about perspective. Most likely, if you are aware enough, you will not put everything in the very first version of your store.

This means that in choosing the platform, you will have to take one that is scalable. In this case, it makes sense to check the capabilities of the different platforms, considering the features planned for the future.

At some point in time, you will face the situation where no platform covers your particular business needs. So, you need a third party solution or developer team that will bring the missing features.

Therefore, you must take this aspect into consideration. If you see that you may need a lot of custom development in the future, it is good to check the price attached to this type of business for the different platforms available.

Consider the size of your catalog

Another thing you should consider is the size of your catalog and visitor base. If you have a million SKUs and more, it may not be easy for some platforms to manage this amount of data.

Or, if your business model will use flash sales with hundreds of orders per minute, it could be overkill for most platforms as well.

In this case, you must therefore consider the characteristics of the various platforms, whether or not they can support a large number of products, but not only.

In fact, you must also define a hosting and its characteristics, especially if you have a lot of products and a lot of traffic. The choice of hosting also leads you to additional costs to consider.

If you are interested in a quotation, contact us and we will find the right hosting for your needs!

Choose the right solution for you

To sum up, when choosing an E-Commerce platform, you must first think about the following factors:

  • Functionality that the platform provides outside the box.
  • Features that can be easily added to basic functionality.
  • How many ‚Äúunique‚ÄĚ business cases do you have and how expensive it will be to reflect them in the e-commerce store now and in the future.
  • The size of your catalog now and in the near future.
  • Number of customers you expect now and in the future.
  • What is the ROI in terms of maintaining and improving your store.

There are many other factors to consider, but in this guide we have described the most common ones, then it is up to you to decide according to your needs.