The Ultimate Cheat Sheet on Planning a Magento Store

December 28, 2015 Written By Jayesh Trivedi

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Magento is recognized worldwide as the top platform for building an eCommerce store, it is perhaps the right way to have a successful business and drive more traffic. When one thinks about eCommerce development, then Magento is surely the foremost option. It’s not without any reason, but its tremendous advantages, several functionalities, user-friendly behavior and dynamic attributes which makes it stand ahead. It’s an ideal option of various eCommerce websites that deal in selling a variety of products.

Merchants have been choosing Magento to give a refreshing look to their eCommerce store. Empowering them with its high performance and complete functionalities makes it the right choice of the business.

Here, in this blog, we have covered essential things that would give you a better idea of what you exactly need and how you can develop your eCommerce store.


This is an essential phase of the eCommerce development process. Planning and thinking about the beginning and end of the project is crucial at the initial stage. Making a plan for your future eCommerce Platform requires attention at the beginning before actually writing the code or designing it.

Important Tips to Remember 

  1. Define the name of the person and their roles who will be involved in the project planning process.
  2. Ensure involving financial and legal aspects that are a must in online business.
  3. Get familiarize yourself with the entire Magento web development project process.
  4. Develop the concept of your project before contacting any Magento development
  5. Also, commit entirely in the plan for successful implementation.

Strategy and General Matters

Target your Potential Audience and Market 

When you have an online store, take time to find out who are the potential customers. Identifying the actual audience is a way to build a successful eCommerce store. By considering the right traffic, you will probably know who will buy your products that crafts your website structure and design and also later helps in the marketing campaign. Chances are to build a successful online store that targets customers.

Which Magento Platform Edition?

As you already know, you are going to use the Magento platform to build the eCommerce store. Therefore, it’s essential to identify which Magento edition you are going to use; Enterprise or Community. As both the versions possess identical properties, therefore choose one considering the number of products that you want to accommodate in your store, after that, find the appropriate edition accordingly.

What will be your website structure and how products will be presented?

Magento gives facility to have multiple websites, store, store views in a single installation. This means all the websites will have a common administration panel. The sites, stores and store views may have their design or share them.

They can be:

  1. Single website in One Language
  2. A single site in multiple languages, then two ways of creating such a website structure are:
    • Every website have its domain name
    • The single domain name for every website

What is your website domain name?

The identical domain name is a must for every website to get recognized in the competition. The domain name should be easy to spell and remember, describing you and your products. Make sure it should not violate copyright laws and must be registered without delay.

Define a tree/hierarchy structure for Magento instance to decide how the product will be related to them

Finalizing product catalog is yet another essential concern which defines how your product will be displayed. Navigation and search factors have a high impact on keeping hold of your customers.


Website design is a representation of your business. A good, productive and competitive Magento store design shows your seriousness of providing customer service. Henceforth, build trust and establish a customer relationship. A professional design website should be user-friendly, attractive and clear that would develop your reputation.

Two design options are available for your Magento Store:

  • Ready-made Magento Theme Design
  • Custom Magento Theme Design

Ready-made Magento Theme Design 

The wide availability of Magento Theme Design offers merchants to choose a relevant Magento Theme for their website. Such ready-made themes were designed by the professionals worldwide who upload them to be used by any merchants. Tons of website templates are available that you can buy and customize. However, this option is valid only for small business as significant changes are required for a big company that exceeds your budget which is considered as a con. Secondly, several other websites are already using it, thus leading to poor website rankings.

Presently, ready-made themes are available at a wide range of stores. First, identify your store and then search to select the best one.

At last, even if you like a theme and feel it’s not something that suits your business, then you have the option to customize it. Although, the necessary changes of color, logo, fonts and so on does not cost your much, however, the cost may exceed including time if require major changes. 

Custom Magento Theme Design 

Among several competition in the market, a custom Magento theme design is the must for your store because it gives a unique brand identity. It’s solely dedicated to the business demands. Every single components and functionality are according to your website demands. Customized themes ensure that your audience is serious about you. Being built to give a unique presence online, the website design is what you desire and according to your requirements, exceeding your expectations. 

Before moving ahead, define a set of guidelines for how your website would look like. Consider the product type and choose its design style. Decide which message you want to convey to your audience. Finalize whether the audience should feel formal, modern, casual or so on.

You may also browse your competition websites to look at how their website can be found appealing or what designing strategies they have implemented. Create a list of elements to be or not to be included.

Responsive Design

After the release of Google’s mobile algorithm update, implementing responsive design has become a vital need to reach potential customers. Contributing to several advantages including boosting sales, websites ranking is improved dramatically. It has become a must to have a responsive template for an eCommerce store.


  • SEO optimization
  • Fits across every screen size
  • Easy maintenance
  • Improved page load time


Products are yet of another important concern that describes products and their types to be displayed in the store.

Generally, there are six product types in Magento which are:

  1. Simple: As the name suggests, this is just a simple product with no significant details like color or size. All you need to ship this product. 
  2. Configurable: Products have various choices associated with it like color or size which better describes it. Depending on the product type, additional cost may arise. 
  3. Download: This Magento product is used for online software items like a powerpoint presentation, Magento extension or MP3 file. Such a product does not have any shipping method selected as there’s nothing to ship. 
  4. Virtual: Its only virtual product like insurance, product guarantee or reservation which cannot be touch. Also, this option does not have any choice of selecting shipping methods. 
  5. Bundle: This facilitates user to bundle their products (products build from several options) where each product is a standalone product. Example: Assembling computer, gift sets, etc.
  6. Grouped: It is a group of simple products. It contains a group of products that you have grouped to sell online with an offer. Example: Mobile with a memory card and Bluetooth.

How is the product listed on the store?

Another concern arise is whether you need to import any product data. This will be performed easily with a few numbers of products available to be imported manually. However, this becomes challenging if thousands of products are available. In such a case, you are expected to provide with the product information to the developers to do that for you.

Few important product information is:

  • Product name
  • Price
  • SKU (can be generated automatically if you don’t have your SKUs)
  • Product Description
  • One or more images of reasonable size and quality
  • Variants and variant options – product attributes (e.g., size, color, etc.)
  • Each product category or categories

Payments and Shipping 

One of the important concern is planning your payment and shipping methods during Magento web development process. First of all, identify the payment and shipping methods provided by the Magento store. Choose the best options for your business.

Few common and renowned Payment Methods are:

  • PayPal
  • Credit card
  • Bank transfer
  • Cash on delivery
  • Purchase order
  • net

If you do not find any of your payment methods, then it’s not a major issue as you can easily integrate other payment methods in your Magento store.

Shipping Methods:

  • Flat rate
  • Free shipping
  • Table rates
  • Online rates

Magento store is already integrated with popular shipping providers like USPS, FedEx, DHL, and UPS. However, you may even choose other service provider and easily connect with the Magento Store.

Marketing and Promotions

Magento is a single platform available with a bunch of eCommerce modules. Marketing and promotion with Magento open up doors to boost your sales. Another important area covered in Magento is a bunch of other features, and some of them are coupons, tiered pricing, discounts, related products, customer and product reviews, wish list, recommend to a friend, cross-sells and up-sells, product comparison, special features and many other features that would successfully build your Magento store.

Moreover, you can add any other extensions to load more features.

Additional Features

Sometimes, your expected features are absent in Magento. So, research what features are missing in the Magento store, then describe it in your product specification guide.


Magento provides integration service with almost every third-party system like PMS, ERP, POS, and CMS, however, exceptionally, identify what online systems you require to conclude your store operations that are not available in Magento. Because integration with any other third party system is complicated and time-consuming, identify them ahead.

Hosting Services

Which Hosting Service to select for your Magento Store?

Define the hosting service you want to choose for your Magento Store.

Is your Website Secure?

Security is an essential concern of your website to encrypt customer information to give protection. When any critical information is shared online, then an encryption protocol known as Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) is used. Different types of SSL certificates are available to offer advanced security. Such certification requires your unique IP address, registration, and recurring fee. The cost of the document varies according to the security layer you have chosen. Remember, even customers were taken to a secure browser, but the absence of SSL certificates indicates potential to treat.

Magento store comes with the bundle of features to develop eCommerce store. Initially, if you have done planning your Magento store development, then hire an expert Magento developer who can start developing your website.

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One comment

  1. Excellent post with informative content. I specially like the way you have covered every important information which should be considered while developing magento store. It also helped me in deciding which design should I choose for my upcoming store

    Good Piece.

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