It is considered much more convenient to use free open source software than make monthly or annual payment for the license getting almost no difference. However, would this also be true about Magento system? Now we will try to highlight the advantages of both Magento Enterprise and Magento Community editions.
Magento is a platform with open source code. Magento Community edition is free and can be downloaded from the official site. It is used by a very large number of online stores. Over 25% of entrepreneurs prefer Community edition, which is quite natural as this system was designed to meet the requirements of customers from absolutely different business spheres.
Some advantages of Magento Community edition are listed below:
1. Unlike most of online store creation and maintenance systems, Magento CE has a separate section where all of the design files are stored;
2. A huge quantity of various Magento extensions can be installed and used to extend web store functionality;
3. Easy upgrade process. No specific skills are needed to perform the upgrade. The only inconvenience is that it is necessary to install each version in strict order, e.g. you cannot jump from 1.5 to 1.9 at once. You will need to upgrade it to 1.6, 1.7, 1.8, and only then install the version 1.9.
4. Community edition was created considering the requirements of both programmers and marketing specialists. No third-party extensions are necessary to configure SEO parameters, payment modules, product lines, sales, etc.
Magento Enterprise edition was presented later and it gained huge popularity with the large companies at once. This edition is paid and it is not a cheap purchase. It costs $18,000 per year. However, for that price you get the whole set of functions that were not available in free editions.
Magento Enterprise advantages:
1. A web store mobility. You can configure the system to work on mobile devices without installation of any third party extensions. The necessary module is built in the system which is very convenient.
2. The option of extended product offers is very useful. Now the web store owners can offer their customers those products in which they are actually interested. The list can be created with the help of the order history.
3. A widened multi-language option, extended currency support and other useful features for large international web portals and stores.
4. Extended SEO possibilities which include automatic sitemap generation, creation of an address list of sites that may serve as link agents, filling in metadata, etc.
5. You can use the admin panel to manage customers’ data such as their location and order history. Besides, you can control all their actions.
6. You have a possibility to run a private sale for VIP customers. This is very convenient for online auctions or just for stores which sell rare expensive products, such as Antiques, fashion boutiques, jewelry stores.
7. The company states that Magento Enterprise edition performs catalogs re-index much faster, is better optimized for the search engines and is more flexible compared to Magento Community.
8. A very simple and flexible tax calculation system that works without any additional extensions.
9. The most necessary option is probably the possibility of site certification to be able to accept direct credit card payments without installation of additional modules. Now you do not need to install additional extensions from PayPal.
Magento CE does not come with professional support, only a message board, while Magento EE version offers professional reports for businesses and their tech support team to ensure everything runs smoothly. This option better suits for large businesses which make most of their revenue through eCommerce.