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Magento 2 Posts

New Product Questions for Magento 2: Feasible Completeness of Product Descriptions

During this transitional period Magento especially needs a lot of great features able to prove once again its power and value worthy of the most popular ecommerce platform worldwide. In this regard, we also strive to make necessary efforts and increase the number of ready to go Magento 2 extensions.

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The Product Questions Magento 2 extension by aheadWorks is responsible for the operations closely knitted to products and eventually sales. It provides additional product value without any extra expenses or exceptional efforts.

The Product Questions Magento 2 ExtensionCustomers appreciate great products most of all, but today this concept is much wider than just a set of straightforward functionalities providing operational effectiveness. Amid this, products should fully satisfy customers’ needs and in this case the angle moves to the individual perception and personal communications. And, this is what the Product Questions extension makes best of all:

  • Information about Your Products. Your desire to reveal all the best features of your products is incomplete without dispelled customers’ concerns and removed pitfalls. So the Product Questions extension makes your product sheet complete.
  • Loyalty through Communication. Live communications convey the spirit of a trusted destination and make customers feel safe and loyal to the store and products.
  • Extra Content. Questions and answers make your web store live and full of constantly updated content in the eyes of search engines and this way improve your SERP rankings.
  • Genuine Feedback. Using the extension customers get a chance to display their thrilling questions priceless for merchants as the basics for further service improvements. All the improvements based on customers’ suggestions show them their significance and make them fill involved.

Product questions allow you to meet the above goals alone, however, when supplied with reach and capable backend functionality, they make the module a real communication and educational tool in your hands.

M2 Product Questions Functionality

Customer Interaction

Ask a Question
Asking questions about products is the main functionality of the extension shaping its main ecommerce value.

Customers' Product Questions

Customers’ Product Questions

Customers are able to ask public and private (sent directly to Magento admin without public sharing) questions. They just need to type them to the Question section and press the Send Question button. If a customer wants to make his question private, he just checks the Private Question check box.

The Freshest Magento 2 Installation

The starting point for exploring the broad advantages and capabilities of Magento 2 is to download and install the platform.

Magento 2 Installation

Despite the awesome functionality Magento 2 is harder to install than the previous version of software. This necessitated the emergence of multiple installation guides across the Internet. But, most of them point at the manual way of installation, or cast a lot of console spells to install different server-side software, or just loose their relevance gradually.

On the other hand, there is a bunch of ready Magento 2 stores installed in online demos, but most of them are also outdated. Besides, in this case you can’t play around with files, command-line scripts, tests, etc.

Rapid obsolescence is pretty natural since Magento 2 is still in Beta and the code is subject to change until the GA release. Nevertheless, our ultimate goal is to overcome this obstacle and always have available a fresh Magento 2 version.

Below we share, we believe, a great way to install the latest Magento 2 any time you follow this guide. The solution uses Vagrant and Puppet to setup a full-featured Ubuntu box with Magento2 inside. All you need is to install VirtualBox and Vagrant, launch a couple of commands, and enjoy the freshest M2 already running.

Magento 2 Installation

Vagrant Configuration to Run Magento 2

This Vagrant configuration sets up the required environment and installs the latest available Magento 2 running on Ubuntu 14.04.3 LTS (Trusty Tahr).

Box Contents

  • Ubuntu 14.04.3 LTS (Trusty Tahr);
  • Apache 2.4 with mods enabled;
  • MySQL 5.6;
  • PHP 5.5.9 with all the extensions required for Magento 2;
  • Composer;
  • Git.

Magento 2 Glossary for Non-Techies or How It’s Made

The changes introduced for Magento 2 are significant and developers, merchants and the others involved in Magento need to know the specifics of the new platform since it is almost here.

Magento 2 Features in One Glossary

This knowledge will help to understand the advantages provided by the Magento 2 and the specifics of its usage. Primarily oriented towards store owners the Glossary below describes most prominent Magento 2 features in plain language.

Magento 2 Features in One Glossary

Composer

Composer is a packages management system for PHP widely used in Magento. Currently Magento 2 can be completely downloaded and installed via Composer, and the team seems to continue developing it for further implementations. It is used to install/uninstall third-party extensions, add new libraries, etc.

Dependency Injections

Dependency injections are the processes of object isolation via constructors aiming to make classes and objects independent for further easier development and testing. The back side of this procedure is that it creates larger code snippets, which are harder for debugging.

Docker

Docker is an open-source software automating the deployment of application in dedicated software containers. The Docker’s special advantage useful for the Magento 2 development is that it doesn’t require a separate operating system to be run within the virtualized container.

GitHub

Magento 2 uses GitHub as an official repository  from the outset. The dedicated section of the service contains both Magento and community contributions, including official Magento versions and related documentation, extensions, supporting software, etc.

aheadWorks Magento 2 Extensions Embrace an Advanced Approach

With the advent of Magento 2 aheadWorks proclaims a new advanced approach to the development, support, and enhancement of our products. We are achieving this by means of three basic tenets.

Magento 2 Extensions

Magento 2 Extensions Advanced Approach

Ahead-of-the-curve Functionality

The first batch of Magento 2 extensions is largely inspired by our customers and we plan to make this approach traditional. With this in mind, we added some questions to our demo store tutorials and this way want to encourage you to contribute to the functionality and design of our products.

Our cooperation is the most effective way to build right Magento extensions

We believe that our cooperation is the most effective and beneficial way to build right Magento extensions covering real ecommerce needs and welcome everyone to exchange views and ideas.

Products to Run a Business, not Just a Store

Daily use of our products by numerous store owners and customers made us to carefully consider the Magento administration processes and make them time saving and intuitive.

We consciously put backend usability at the forefront and implement the most straightforward workflows in the operational logic of our modules. This way, our extensions avoid excessive actions, repeated steps, and vague interface.

We consciously put usability at the forefront

We press for seamless learnability and memorability of our products due to intuitive layout and handy navigation allowing Magento admins to easily accomplish their daily tasks.

Easily Customizable Solutions

And finally, as soon as you need to customize some of our products, we do our best to make this process largely unobstructed.

We develop our modules compliant with Magento 2 extension development guidelines in terms of coding standards, architecture, packaging, and integration abilities. Our extensions are based on the scalable architecture and thoroughly commented clean code.

We do our best to make customizations unobstructed

Magento 2 Extension product packages also include the dedicated development documentation designed to streamline the process of customization.

Pioneering Magento 2 Extensions by aheadWorks

Our pioneer extensions, Follow Up Email and Advanced Reports, embrace the mentioned above principles and open the aheadWorks Magento 2 portfolio.

Follow the tutorials in demo stores to evaluate the functionality, design and business logic of the extensions and leave your feedback. We really appreciate it.

The Follow Up Email Magento 2 extensionFollow Up Email

Follow Up Email is one of those time-tested tools, which brings your relations with customers to the new level. Triggered emails are closely related to the customers’ activity and deliver only accurate and timely information.

Follow Up Email events are repeatedly approved by live online stores and modern business logic. All the provided events are grouped under Marketing -> Follow Up Email by aheadWorks -> Events.

Each event reflects potentially beneficial occasions for email marketing able to create new conversions. Event sections feature email templates to be used in certain cases. By default, Follow Up Email offers you a collection of ready-to-use predefined templates and useful hints added to each section.

Magento 2 Extensions: Our View

Now, with the advent of the Magento 2 Merchant beta we realize that just a short time remains before the great shift in the ecommerce world – the final launch of Magento 2. This long-awaited leap is going to be quite a hard challenge for the whole community and for us personally as a Magento extension provider.

So, what are the main features of Magento 2 plugins and how will they affect both vendors and merchants? We asked our Magento 2 Development Team to answer our questions on the topic.

Magento 2 Extensions Development Process

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FEDOR MOROZOV
AHEADWORKS DEVELOPER

aW: What are the differences of the Magento 2 extensions development process compared to Magento 1?

Fedor: Magento 2 extensions development involves a more structured approach: more classes, objects, new code patterns, xml, xsd. Today, Magento is much closer to the “enterprise style”. You also need some time to embrace Magento 2 coding standards, but it is actually not more complicated than to port to Magento 1 from other ecommerce solutions.

Thanks to the new mechanisms, the integration into the system became simpler and more transparent. And, the architecture of Magento 2 provides a big order, encapsulation, and modules’ independence.

Magento 2 Demo

In our previous post we wrote about the changes that Magento 2 brought to the backend and frontend interface, and now you can explore them with your own eyes in our Magento 2 demo store.

The frontend of each store largely depends on the implemented theme, configuration and integrated extensions and can be surprisingly different from the default view. In our demo store we tried to mainly keep unchanged the default user interface to let you have an idea of the starting point you approach right after the installation.

Magento Welcome

As for the backend interface it is more static and you’ll be able to recognize the Magento 2 admin area on any store you ever visit.

Magento 2 Demo Store Backend

The first striking change of the Magento 2 backend is the changed color scheme provided for Magento admins. The blue-to-gray palette of Magento 1.x is changed to more contrast fields and blocks in black and white.

New Backend Interface of Magento 2

This year Imagine 2015 was held on the eve of Magento 2 release and a great part of the conference content was devoted to its new features and functionality.

Magento 2 at Imagine 2015

Magento 2 made three sessions at Imagine 2015 and was the major topic of the first conference day. Ten ad hoc presentations on the topic were provided by the Magento Development Team and community experts on Monday, April 20:

  • Magento 2 backend admin UX and framework changes;
  • Magento 2 configuration;
  • Migrating merchant data and themes to Magento 2;
  • Code customizations;
  • Code generation principles;
  • Caching optimization for Magento code development;
  • Magento 2 performance and scalability;
  • Refactoring into TDD / BDD.

Magento 2 Backend Admin UX and Framework Changes

We all put a lot on Magento 2 and want it to be able to change the world of ecommerce, improve and intensify Magento solution. We clearly realize that it should be a differently new product, but what are the directions of changes and what is the priority approach to its functionality, structure and design development?

One of the most noticeable novelties for Magento admins is the change of backend interface implemented in Magento 2. And, if other preseentations are full of developer oriented technical details, Magento 2 admin interface is close and clear for merchants as well. Especially that the new Magento 2 interface is mostly designed for non-technical users, according to Jonathan Atkins, Head of Product Design and UX.

There are two main reasons inspiring Magento admin user interface changes – complexity and users focus. These both aims are closely linked together.

Since the new design is primarily created for Magento merchants, it was necessary to make it more simple and effective. Assumed to be a “business tool for business users” the new interface looks greatly different from Magento 1.

New Look and Feel

Starting from the very beginning the new look and feel deserve special attention. The Magento 2 backend interface obtained improved usability and modern flat design, which is touch-friendly with larger click/tap targets.

All You Need to Know or Once Again about Magento 2

Magento 2 is on the fast track now and the company pays much attention to its promotion among developers, which should embrace the new code as quickly as possible and then extend it further throughout the market. The turn of merchants will come a bit later, apparently, closer to the Merchant beta release.

Magento 2

But, no doubt that the whole Community is to get ready to meet Magento 2 fully equipped having a thorough understanding of the new platform. Starting from the very beginning we’ll try to collect some basic facts about Magento 2 and everything around it.

Magento 2 Tasks

The process of Magento 2 development is transparent for all members of the community and we greatly appreciate it. In line with this principle the Magento 2 team declared the main goals of the current enhancement:

  • Update the technology stack;
  • Simplify external integrations;
  • Improve performance and scalability;
  • Streamline the customization process;
  • Enable easier installations and upgrades;
  • Deliver better quality, testing resources, and documentation.

This way we can expect from Magento 2 to be an innovational product able to satisfy the requirements of developers and merchants in a neat and seamless manner.

Magento 2 in Google Trends

The popularity of Magento 2 is rising constantly in Google Trends over the time since 2009, as it is shown on the picture below. Lately Magento 2 reached its highest popularity in December 2014, and April 2015.