Lesson 2: Magento ecosystem

Written by Guido Jansen in
September 2010

As a Magento Master, you are the one people turn to when they want to 'talk' Magento. You don't only need to be able to tell how Magento works, but also how it develops, what we can expect from Magento in the near future and what other companies do with Magento. In other words: know what's hot and what is not! This lesson is about getting you started with keeping up-to-date with the latest developments in the Magento country. I'd highly recommend using an RSS feed reeder (like Google Reader) to keep the news flowing to you instead of you needing to scan dozens of sites. It'll save you lot's of time.

Official resources

  • Magento Blog The official Magento blog, mainly containing updates to the software, showcase items and event information.
  • Magento Connect A stream of new Magento extensions. This feed is really busy with many extensions every day. This one isn't high on your priority list, but scan through the list periodically to look for interesting addons.
  • Magento Uservoice This is where people can add and vote on suggestion for future Magento versions. Here you'll find suggestions and feedback from the users of the system, which is very useful to keep yourself up-to-date with community issues.

3rd party companies

  • Inchoo A custom Design and Development company from Croatia. They regularly share their knowledge about Magento and projects plus they have a fun cartoon about themselves :).
  • BlueAcorn
  • Redstage

Personal Blogs

Of course there are many more Magento resources but you'll notice that most other blogs focus on technical Magento development (which is not the focus of this course). I'd also recommend looking for some feeds that are near your location, for instance a local Magento community and partner websites.

General e-commerce blogs

As a Magento Master you're not only responsible for knowing the ins and outs of Magento. You need to be aware that many people using Magento don't care about Magento and just want to sell stuff online. Besides Magento, you'll also need to be able to advice people about best practices in general e-commerce, usability, analytics, testing... You don't need to (and can't) be an expert in every field, but advising requires some interdisciplinary knowledge to give clients a complete overview (and to get one yourself). Therefore I've also got some general blogs for you that I follow, but make sure too pick the one that'll interest you the most, there are many (many!) out there.

Tasks for this week:

  • Add the above links to your feedreader and start reading the blogs. Not just for this week, this is one you'll need to keep doing.
  • Look for local Magento community and partner websites to keep yourself up-to-date with local developments. This will teach you the state of the local community, what their capabilities are and who you need to get in touch with when you're in need of help. In a while, you should even consider joining a local community to spread your (upcoming) knowledge and wisdom. If there are any Magento events, go to them or even join the organizing team.
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