Why Choose Drupal Commerce?
E-commerce keeps evolving, and the rate of change isn't showing any signs of slowing down. Every day there are new ways to connect with your existing customers and to find new ones.
Drupal Commerce is almost uniquely suited to meeting those challenges, and it goes right to the core of what makes Drupal such a special project.
What makes Drupal Commerce so special?
Is it the phenomenal feature list? No, it isn't. Although Drupal Commerce has a stack of features ( just under 1,400 commerce specific modules are available at the moment ) and will meet anything Magento, Shopify, or any other cart system can offer you, that's not what makes is special. It's something else and that something is something Drupal does better than any other CMS. Freedom.
With Drupal Commerce you get a platform that offers a huge amount out of the box, but also a platform that you can tailor to your needs. Successful e-commerce is about significantly more than just selling items, if you want to be a successful merchant you need to be managing your data & client interactions across a range of platforms and you should be building community and content around your site.
The most popular open source ecommerce platform in the world is currently Magento, and with good reason. Magento is fabulous at presenting items for sale and gives provides a full range of discount structures, shipping options and more. What it is truly horrible at is handling content. It's very difficult to really interconnect the product range with, for example, a blog. You'll see a lot of Magento sites with blogs are using a different platform ( such as Wordpress ) for handling their non-product content. This is a huge drawback in customer experience and damages conversion rates. Sure, you can make the two sites looks the same, but as soon as you send the customer off to read a blog, they lose their connection to their shopping cart. Depending on your staffing set up you may also need to train your content editors on two very different platforms.
Historically Magento was a great choice, but the ground has shifted.
So how does Drupal Commerce handle Content vs Product?
This being Drupal the real answer is 'however you tell it to'. However, for this example we'll say that when your customer is reading up on the pros and cons of your various offerings in your latest blog post they can still get straight to the checkout, you can still present their cart in any format you choose, and you can still entice them to checkout with specific information relevant to the products in their cart, the items they've been viewing, their geographical location, your special offers or any other data you can access. You can provide add to cart buttons & forms for the products that you mention in your post right there on the page.
Why does the freedom Drupal Commerce provides matter to your business?
- Your data is free - you can export your data in almost any structure you'd like. And you can do it as often as you like. When you need to interact with 3rd party applications you can do it. You're not locked in and the only limits are your imagination & desire. The only silos in Drupal are the ones you choose to create by restricting access.
- Flexibility - Drupal's underlying structure means you can hook into the system at almost any point and add, remove and modify data or the program flow. If you need to send a newsletter, provide access to downloads, provide shipping quotes, want to offer specific product ranges to subsets of your customer base or do pretty much anything else you can think of then you can.
- Strength - Drupal is an industrial, enterprise strength system, you won't outgrow it.
- Community - you can build one around your offerings, and you can use Drupal to drive your promotion channels.
- Community - there's a great depth and breadth to the Drupal developer community and you will be able to find support.
- Control - you decide how your site works and what happens to your data.
- It's actually free - Magento's community offering is free but limited, their enterprise level system is US$15,500+. Drupal is licensed under the GPLv2/3 licence making it entirely free in both 'beer and speech' senses of the word. No licence to renew, no-one forcing you to upgrade or buy plugins and if you choose to take the codebase and turn it into something else entirely, you can.
Who can help you with Drupal Commerce in New Zealand?
By a lucky co-incidence, we can! Get in touch and we'll help build you an e-commerce platform that delivers results and grows with your business.
Below is a video from the originators of Drupal Commerce, it's a little technical in places for the lay viewer but is of interest to anyone making a decision on an ecommerce platform.