I hope you can help me please (
I have been with CA for 8 years, my contract is ending soon and I think it is time to leave. My business size has decrease by 40% over the last 4 years, so I am not sure I can justify CA monthly fees of approx. £800/900. One good thing is I am CA old contract rate which Is about 40% cheaper than everyone else is paying.
I only use CA at a very basic level, some basic products variations but nothing flash as it seems to be so complex to do and constantly getting errors, mainly on amazon for variations. I mainly use Ca for
Listing products to uk locales and website
Managing suppliers and products with ease
I am very uneasy about leaving CA, as really it is all I know. Currently I sell on all the ebay sites and amazon eu sites and .com. I have a website aswell, which is a CA premium store. I have contacted a magento developer called dotsquares, they have a india team that will set everything up for me.
I find with CA premium stores there are so many limitations, mainly because if you need a developer to update the website it cost a fortune. Everything is so complex with CA and low cost outsourcing for CA is very hard to find.
The magento developer has said they can set everything up, but they are not sure that they can successfully synchronise all my variation listing from amazon uk and eu locales. So I think the only work around would be to start from scratch and they can make offering against my asins. This way at least I can sleep at night knowing that all the locals are set up accurately and they are mapped, so future changes can be easily made.
Only my UK locales and USA locales are actually mapped to CA, as creating listing from scratch to listing to amazon EU’s is too expensive. We simply use webinterpret to list to these locales and the orders fall into my CA locales when they are made, a bit worried if magento will be able to do this?
I would appreciate any advice with this, as I am going into unknown territories,
Firstly moving providers, always a tough choice and my honest answer (as it has been for years) is not to, unless you really need or want to.
The only part of your overview that concerns me is this part:
I have contacted a magento developer called dotsquares, they have a india team that will set everything up for me.
Unless they can provide you with a decent list of existing sites that you feel are up to it, I’d personally suggest you avoid Indian based Magento teams. Not because their coding is pants, but because they’ll miss obvious Western world things and you can normally spot a poorly designed Magento site a mile off.
And… they seem to be getting more expensive. Have a look at Themeforest.net there are lots of themes you can use of the shelf, the one we use the tutorials costs $99, makes a fantastic base and leaves oodles over for either additional extentions or spending on marketing (the part that will make you money).
Oh and to add to that I would be wary on their suggestion over the matching up the data unless they can prove lots of previous experience with M2E Pro, also combine this with that M2E has only just added support for the creation of new products (more on that in a moment).
If you’re coming from ChannelAdvisor then the one area that isn’t great in Magento is reports when compared to CA. CA have got the whole reporting thing nailed down to an outstanding level.
Your timing around Amazon and variations is spot on, they’ve just released version 6.3 which includes the ability to create variations on Amazon and this is going to be in the advanced course we start in a few days time (the basic setup course is done, that goes live around the 13th May).
Also as you’ve been using CA, then you’ll have all the product data to hand, unlike coming from no previous tool and having to do that from scratch!
For webinterpret, thats done something I have used with the international Amazon sites, however I don’t see any major issue with the collection of 3rd party orders from those sites (assuming you have added them to M2EPro) and have the products in Magento so that they can be matched up.
Hope that helps Steve, if it doesn’t just ask away :)
I’m sure you’ll be happier on Magento. Just get it set up and tested before making the switch.
I’d echo @matt’s advice to avoid Indian developer teams. I love India and it’s people, and they have one of the biggest software outsourcing businesses in the world – but the good developers are either in full-time employment or are really hard to find. And like Matt says, it’s just a different culture re. quality of work and attention to detail. My Indian developer buddies of course disagree and you could find some great ones!
I’d check @Chrisastley for a quality install/setup. He’ll get what you want and do it faster then messing around with people that may charge 10%, but will take 20x the time to do a half-assed job.
Managing suppliers and products with ease
I can maybe help with stockEasy for some of these. What specifically do you do (or would you ideally like to do) that you’d like to replicate?
I was in a similar situation to you last year, having been on CA since 2008, though our website had been on Magento since 2010 after a brief time on CA’s basic webstore. A dinosaur from the late 90’s which I’m sure you’ll agree.
I had been considering moving away from CA for a year or so and when Understandinge appeared on the scene last year, and after viewing some of the tutorials I made the decision to jump ship. I installed M2E on our current Magento installation and now have all our ebay listings going through the site. This was a relatively easy transition; exporting all my CA listings and importing to Magento, doing a little cleanup work and launching our listings.
Our Amazon listings are still with CA as I was waiting for M2E to release their updated version which as Matt noted offers better communication to Amazon. During this transition phase I’ve been redesigning our site with the Ulitmo theme recommended by Matt & Dave, and will launch this summer along all marketplace orders processed through Magento.
As Jim & Matt have alluded to, developers in India can be difficult communicate with and believe you will be up and running much sooner if you contract with a developer in the UK or USA. If you have a few techie genes in you, consider signing up for Understandinge Premium and go through the video tutorials. This will give you a better insight into what needs to be done to build the website and distribution engine for the marketplaces you sell to. Also this will give you a good foundation for specifying your requirements when interviewing/negotiating with web design companies.
My suggestion would be to setup a Magento store on brand new server and domain for you just to learn. Understand how it works, follow the tutorials provided here.
Even if you find that you do not have the time or inclination to do what is suggested here, at least it would give you an idea on how things work. In turn this will give you a basis to define exactly what you want to done to a developer.
The simple request is, I want to move from A to Z, and everyone is going to tell you they can do it, but you may not like the results because there are so many different ways to do it. You would be better of understanding what you want done, how you want it done, and then hire someone to do exactly what you want done. By being able to define the work better, you will also figure out if the developer understands the nuances you are asking about, which in turn will give you some ideas if they have done this and really fully understand the migration project.
If you take a few hours a weekend, and less than $70 a month for a few months to setup a server and monthly premium membership here, I think you will educate yourself so much better on what it takes to move and what to expect from the move. I think that is a small price to pay to avoid $1000s of Dollars in development cost because you couldn’t properly define the results you want to your liking.
And as has been said already, working with a developer in your native language is best as they will likely outsource much of the work anyway. But they have trusted developers they work with and if they are responsible, they will vet the code and results before being applied. Effectively your “local” developer is your project manager.
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