Essential Extensions for Magento Developers

Every client has different needs for their storefront, and vanilla Magento often does not cater to these needs. Every Magento developer needs a good library of extensions to meet these needs. In this article, we’ll check out some good extensions to start with.

Essential Extensions for Magento Developers

When creating a Magento storefront, you cannot use the vanilla Magento install and hope to have a truly effective storefront. Every Magento developer should have a grasp of what kind of extensions are out there, and have some favorites to recommend for clients. In this article, we’ll cover the best Magento extensions that fill the functionality holes in the basic Magento install for each category.

Shipment Management

Shipment can be complicated. Different item sizes need shipped to different locations, even different countries using different couriers and requires sellers to account for variables like import taxes. The built in Magento shipment manager simply cannot handle everything, so Magento developers must find a good extension to solve this.

First, let’s take a look at the suite of extensions that Amasty offers for shipping. Amasty is a Magento development company that offers a wide range of proven extensions. These are more on the expensive end, and there’s a separate paid extension for each major function of improving shipment processing. There’s extensions to do things like add custom shipping rules based on the type of order, restrict shipping methods based on product or customer attributes, auto-shipping, per product flat rates, and so on.

It may be costly, but for large storefronts it’s definitely worth the price. There are community and enterprise editions at different costs, and all of them offer paid support. All of the extensions are compatible with Magento community edition 1.4.x-1.9.x and enterprise edition 1.8.x-1.14.x.

If you’re looking for free plugins, MatrixRate by WebShopApps will add the functionality of offering multiple shipping options to customers based on their location and the size and weight of what they ordered. While it’s a free extension, they do offer paid support if you run into any problems. There’s a version for both Magento 1 and Magento 2.

Magento developers are often asked to setup a storefront for dropshipping. The most robust option for dropshipping is uDropShip by Unirgy. It is a very expensive plugin, but it handles everything, even tracking shipments by the individual company or vendors, all in one robust dashboard.

If you need a cheaper option for dropshipping,  Multiple Vendors Drop Shipping by Extension Hut will allow your client to sell products through different vendors. Each vendor gets their own account, where they can add products and manage their own individual shipping methods from there. 

Search

Elasticsearch by Wyomind provides more relevant search results with better performance for your client’s storefront. Featuring a fast autocomplete, fast indexing, and configuration options it’s a great option for improving the search functionality of Magento.

SEO and Performance

Magento 2 Google Tag Manager Extension by Mageplaza handles adding Google script-tags to all of the content, and adds support for things like Remarketing. Simply install the plugin and add your Google Tag ID, and you’re ready to go.

Every professional Magento developer wants to make their client’s site noticeably faster. Full Page Cache by Amasty provides improved speeds over the default Magento caching by doing more to pre-generate pages that customers will load instead of building the page on first load for all individual visitors. Not only does it provide a dramatic improvement in general loading speed which greatly improves the SEO, it also allows your client’s storefront to handle more simultaneous users by caching the most popular pages during slower times using the most common combinations of parameters. This powerful extension is available for community edition 1.4.x-1.9.x and enterprise edition 1.8.x-1.14.x.

Sales

Starting with another Amasty extension, Special Promotions Pro allows your client to create effective discounts and deals, then cater those promotions to users based on their attributes including their name, date of birth, order history, and more. This extension allows clients to make an effective sales pitch to new and existing customers and target certain demographics. 

Gift Cards for Magento by Webtex adds the important functionality of gift cards to your client’s storefront. It allows satisfied customers to introduce new customers to your client’s store, who are very likely to order from them as funds must be used there. If it remains unused like a large portion of gift cards, they’ve just sold a ‘product’ with nearly 100% margin. It offers the choice of email, printable, or mail order gift cards.

If your client needs their store to support affiliate marketing, Affiliate by Mageplaza is a simple plugin that allows them get to started immediately. Offering different tiers based on your client’s needs, this extension will allow you to grow your client’s sales through the effective tactic of affiliate marketing. 

Payment and Checkout

Check out Suite for Magento 2 by IWD reduces the number of steps a customer has to go through to complete their order, drastically increasing the conversion rate. For payment processing methods, it supports, PayPal, Apple Pay, Authorize.net, and Braintree. It also has unique extras like offering in-store pickup.

Conclusion

There’s a lot of good Magento extensions out there, and they fill important holes in the basic functionality of Magento. We outlined what we believe to be the best ones, and whether you use one of these or something different, it is important to tailor your client’s Magento storefront to their needs with the proper extensions and do everything you can to improve performance in order to be competitive. Knowing the best solutions to fulfill the specific functions of a client’s storefront is a great way to help establish yourself as a valuable Magento developer.

 
Written by:
Biplab is a technology enthusiast. After completing his Masters in Systems Management in 2007, he worked in many domains. In web technology in particular, he has more than six years of experience. He updates himself in cutting edge and state-of-the-art technology and is comfortable and eager to work in new technologies. When not working, he likes to travel, listen to music and do photography.
 

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