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New Live Site - Clark & Mayfield
 
bingojed
Jr. Member
 
Total Posts:  6
Joined:  2008-02-04
 

http://www.clarkandmayfield.com

We just went live about two weeks ago.  I have to fix the blog engine - wish I could upgrade that in place but our host doesn’t seem to allow that.  Now that we’re live I really have to coordinate the upgrades!

We used to be a zen-cart site (old site is here: http://209.61.243.177/store/ ) .  Zen-cart served us well for a long time, but it was just too inflexible and the upgrades are few and far between.

Anyway, opinions would be useful.

Thanks!

Barry
Clark & Mayfield
laptop totes
http://www.clarkandmayfield.com

 
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davidDWQ
Sr. Member
 
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Total Posts:  149
Joined:  2009-02-03
Querétaro, México
 

Elegant and classy! I like what you’ve done. With your experience you could write a feature comparison between Zen Cart & Magento in a blog or somewhere which could be useful for those who are not decided which application to use.
I found very interesting to see both sites the zent cart version and magento version. How about SEO? Have you encountered any problems or haven’t checked that jet?

So inspiring.

Congrats!
David

 
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bingojed
Jr. Member
 
Total Posts:  6
Joined:  2008-02-04
 

I couldn’t give a run-down of all the differences.  Some of the reasons we chose Magento over zen-cart, or some of other OSCommerce derivatives are:

*stock levels for attributes (the confgurable product/simple product).  In zen-cart we had to make separate products visible in the catalog for each color since they all had different stock levels.
*search engine friendly url’s - the zc urls are those very unfriendly php things
*modern day look to start with - it takes a ton of work to make zen-cart not look like something from 2001.  And even if you make it look modern, the way it acts is still very old school (full page refreshes and the like).
*bad shipping modules - could never get zen-cart to accurately get the shipping cost from any carrier
*better credit card processing - magento can batch right from inside
*very active development - magento’s growing like crazy
* *somewhat* easier upgrading - though I would say magento is still a bit of a pain to upgrade versions.  At least if there’s no template changes I can just push the upgrade button.
* i can’t really compare the template systems very well since I only made the one for zen-cart, and hired someone for magento.  I think they both have pains and plusses in that department.  I did achieve 90% of my zen-cart look through just one css file and photoshop.
* zen-cart has just a plain old code base it’s working off of in oscommerce.  It’s somewhat akin to Windows Mobile vs the iPhone - no amount of massaging will make Windows Mobile look or feel as good.

Some things I would give zen-cart over magento:
* magento requires a lot more server horsepower, and a very particular configuration with the whole Zend thing
* magento is a bit more delicate - you put one bad character in a CMS file and whole site stops working
* as bad as zen-carts menu’s are, magento’s aren’t great either.  there’s a lot of things in the wrong places, or just plain confusing, and the search button doesn’t do anything as far as I can tell.

I still don’t comprehend how either one requires the staggering number of files they use.  I think zen-cart had like 14,000.  Truly insane!  I don’t know how many magento has, but it’s a whole lot, and the directory structure is confusing.  I think having app/design/default/templatename and a skin/template name is wrong - ideally one directory should be able to contain all your customizations.

Magento has a lot more SEO options.  I haven’t gotten around to filling all of them in, and I wish there some more help with them.  Zen-cart did add more in the last few versions, but the search engine friendly URL’s is supposedly a big advantage of Magento.

So, that’s more than I expected to type, but hopefully useful.

 
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