Stay atop with an optimized Magento site

Physical stores have the whole experience to offer customers who walk through their doors. They can see the products, feel the whole ambiance, and ask questions to sales staff. But if you are selling online, the look and feel of your online store, as well as the whole shopping experience, become extremely important. As customers are increasingly looking for streamlined shopping experiences, a smooth-running online store is one of the few opportunities to impress them.

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As one of the best eCommerce platforms out there, for both B2C and B2B projects, Magento has certainly left no stone unturned, but we have to be truthful – it’s a resource-intensive application. That’s why it needs to be constantly optimized with the end goal to make the user experience simple, effective, and finalized with a purchase. Without optimization, and adding in a customer base with a shorter attention span, merchants risk losing visitors and conversions, or even more serious – damaging their brand and reputation.

Here are a few tips to optimize your Magento2 site:

Analyze and solve errors in Magento log files
Magento logs are really helpful in terms of troubleshooting and understanding the essence of the problems. When a visitor generates a request, it is initially handled by the server (Apache), which communicates to the app (Magento/PHP), which then sends the query to the database (MySQL). In case an error occurs during this cycle, Magento maintains a complete log of all the activities which help identify and resolve the error. There are a few types of errors logged in Magento like Apache errors, PHP errors, and database errors. Magento2 error logging is enabled by default and can be found in the Admin System Configuration section.

Looking at these error messages, developers will find the date, the error level (critical) the error message, and the location.

Our recommendation is to use special tools to receive notifications about potential errors. You can also set up a cron job to send a message each time there’s a new record in your Magento error log.

All Magento logs are stored in the store database, and your website’s performance is also very much affected by the size of the database. To improve it, these logs need to be cleared on a regular basis.

As an e-store owner, it is more important to see if there is an issue and to understand that the issue should be fixed. At OAK3, we have great expertise in developing eCommerce platforms, so please contact us or drop us an email at hello@oak3.agency. We’re here to help!

Install security patches
Magento is indeed an eCommerce powerhouse, but it doesn’t come without obstacles, so every time a new version is launched, the previous becomes vulnerable. A Magento security patch is basically an update of the software which addresses security issues and fixes major bugs or incorporates new functionalities. To avoid vulnerabilities, we recommend installing these patches as soon as they become available.

There are a few steps necessary when installing security patches. First, all patches need to be tested in a stage environment before deploying to production, making sure that Magento will work well after applying them. Second, your database and Magento installation need to be backed up to prevent possible risks that can hurt your e-stores, such as system crashes or data losses. Magento provides a Maintenance Mode to be used whenever you want to temporarily disable your store for testing before going live or for maintenance activities.

Fix errors generated by Magento Security tool
Magento Security Scan is a free tool that can be run on any version of Magento Commerce and Magento open source. Your e-store is monitored in real-time, and the tool reports the issues that make it potentially vulnerable to hacker attacks and gives recommendations on how to fix them. Security scans can be scheduled, and it is essential to know that it doesn’t affect the performance of the site during the security scan process.

Get rid of any worries about your site security! We will make sure your site is secure and we provide you with technical support. Please contact us or drop us an email at hello@oak3.agency. We’re here to help!

Database optimization
In time, reading increasing databases will get slower and slower, therefore optimizing them becomes imperative. One of the generally agreed solutions is to backup and truncate the tables for the entries that don’t hold a high value like bloated log entries, various system events, comparisons inside the catalog, and some other files that the user might not really care about.

If your website is expected to handle extreme loads, a viable option is to look at choosing a different database. Traditionally, MySQL is well known for its long time endurance and is a great baseline solution for database management, but if you expect your store to handle high volumes, there are other safe options like Maria DB and Percona.

Finally, users can set up layered navigation through Elasticsearch, instead of MySQL. This will lift some workload from the database and at the same time offer better performance.

Static files optimization
Magento has a native option where all separated CSS files or JavaScript files can be merged into one single or condensed file. However, for complex projects, with lots of custom features, the number of JS resources in addition to the core JS code required by Magento will increase, and using the native merging option will adversely affect page loading performance. There are various ways to try and reduce the performance impact, but the most effective way of optimizing Javascript loading is to use bundling. Baler and MageSuite Magepack are some of the best options on the market and we fully recommend them.

Image optimization
In eCommerce sites that feature anywhere from a few hundred to a few thousand products, images account for more bytes than any other part, and their size and complexity can make or break your e-store performance. Magento can be enhanced with specific extensions that allow you to reduce the size of images by converting them to next-generation image formats like WebP, thus providing superior compression for images and improving your website performance.

HTML and CSS code validation
Code validation is essential, as it ensures that your eCommerce store is interpreted in the way you want by various web browsers, search engines, and most importantly, by your visitors. Therefore, we suggest using code validation tools to validate your code according to CSS rules and find errors.

At OAK3, we have great expertise in developing eCommerce platforms for B2B online stores. If you want to know more about our services, please contact us or drop us an email at hello@oak3.agency.

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