Ecommerce accounts for an ever-growing portion of trade around the globe. Many businesses — both small and large — now depend on online sales for the bulk of their daily transactions. Some businesses offer their wares exclusively through online stores. Even traditional brick-and-mortar stores often achieve sales through their websites that match or exceed in-store purchases.
Given many businesses’ dependency on web sales, ecommerce platforms are in high demand. Adobe Commerce (formerly Magento) is one of the most popular ecommerce platforms among medium and large businesses. Adobe Commerce includes hosting, cloud services, and marketing tools, but also comes with a high price tag. For smaller businesses, Adobe’s free version, Magento Open Source, might offer a good balance of pricing and features.
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What Is Adobe Commerce?
Adobe Commerce is built on a platform formerly called Magento. (Adobe still calls its free, open-source version “Magento Open Source.”) Adobe Commere an ecommerce platform that specializes in highly customizable online stores. It offers merchants complete control over the appearance, functionality, and content of their online stores.
Adobe Commerce also offers cloud-based ecommerce hosting as well as impressive search engine optimization (SEO), catalog management, and marketing tools. As both a content management system (CMS) and a customer relationship management (CRM) tool, Adobe Commerce’s merchandising, marketing, sales tracking, fulfillment, and shopping cart systems use Adobe’s artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning tools to constantly analyze and improve your online store’s performance.
With hosting and domain registration built in, Adobe Commerce is an all-in-one ecommerce solution for businesses of any size. However, its pricing may place it out of reach for most small businesses. Luckily, Adobe also offers Magento Open Source — a free version of the platform — although it lacks the AI-driven marketing tools, web hosting, and any official support.
Adobe Commerce Pricing Tiers
There are two Adobe Commerce pricing tiers: a free one called Magento Open Source and a more full-featured, paid option simply called Adobe Commerce. While the Magento Open Source platform itself is free, there are still costs associated with using it to build a website that you’ll need to cover.
The price of Adobe Commerce includes hosting and virtually everything you’ll need to run a successful ecommerce business. The cost, however, depends on a company’s specific needs and its average gross sales revenue. You’ll need to get a quote from Adobe to learn what Adobe Commerce would cost for your business, but you can assume it’ll cost at least $22,000 per year.
Magento Open Source
As its name implies, Magento Open Source is an open-source platform. That means it’s a completely free ecommerce platform, and its source code is available for anyone to see and use. This also makes it very flexible, because you, your team, or a hired developer can customize it however you see fit.
While a $0 price tag sounds fantastic, it’s important to note that Magento Open Source has some distinct limitations. Compensating for some of these limitations requires spending on third-party services. So while you can download and use the platform for free, choosing this tier still incurs considerable expenses.
Magento Open Source Features
Magento Open Source offers the following core features:
- Integrated Checkout, Payment, and Shipping
- Mobile-Optimized Shopping
- Global Selling Capabilities
- Catalog Management Tools
- Extended Functionality via an App Marketplace
- Instant-Purchase Functionality
- Site Search Functionality
While Magento Open Source comes with these valuable features for free, it doesn’t include some essential services necessary for an online store. You’ll need to access those services from a third party.
Pricing for Services Not Included in Magento Open Source
Magento Open Source doesn’t include domain registration, web hosting, or security features. Purchasing a domain name can cost between $10 and $20 per year. Web hosting typically ranges from $10 to $30 per month while a Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) certificate for online store security costs between $200 and $600 per year.
Unless you have the time and skills to develop your business website on your own, you’ll need to pay a Magento developer to set up your online store to your specifications. These developers usually charge between $65 and $150 per hour. The total cost will depend on the extent of the work required. For instance, migrating an entire existing website over to Magento Open Source from another platform will take quite a bit of time. You may need to periodically pay the developer again to perform maintenance or to update your website.
In addition, a Magento website theme will add to the overall price tag. Premade themes can cost as little as $17 or as much as $400. If you decide to have a designer build a custom theme for your site, the cost can range from $600 to $25,000 with the average totalling around $5,000.
Extensions and add-ons also can increase the cost. While you can find thousands available for free or under $30, some can cost up to $2,000. These items may represent one-time costs or they may be monthly or yearly subscriptions.
Overall, when you consider third-party expenses, using the Magento Open Source platform typically costs $5,000 to $15,000 per year with at least an extra $5,000 to $10,000 in the first year for a developer and theme.
|Typical Third-Party Expenses Associated With Using Magento Open Source|
|Domain||$10-$20 per year|
|Web Hosting||$10-$30 per month|
|SSL Certificate||$200-$600 per year|
|Magento Developer||$65-$150 per hour|
|Magento Theme||$17-$25,000 ($5,000 average)|
|Extensions/Add-Ons||$0-$2,000 per item|
The paid platform, Adobe Commerce, covers many of the costs above, including robust cloud-based hosting and security tools. Many of Adobe Commerce’s features are tailored toward much larger ecommerce operations.
Typical users of Adobe Commerce include businesses operating multiple websites or even running multiple companies and likely selling to and from various locations around the world. These businesses conduct millions or billions of dollars in yearly sales both to consumers (business-to-consumer or B2C) and to other businesses (business-to-business or B2B). The pricing for this platform reflects its value to these very large businesses.
Adobe Commerce Features
Adobe Commerce offers all of the features included with Magento Open Source plus many business-focused, built-in additions. Using machine learning and AI, Adobe Commerce constantly analyzes a store’s performance, letting business owners know what works and what doesn’t. It presents this information in easy-to-understand reports that integrate production, sales, fulfillment, customer relationship, and marketing data.
Some of its core features include:
- Business Intelligence Dashboards
- B2B Functionality
- A Page Template Builder
- Advanced Marketing Tools
- Content Staging and Preview Tools
- Customer Loyalty Tools
- Visual Merchandising Tools
- Product Recommendations Functionality
- Customer Segmentation Tools
- Web Hosting
- Security Tools
- Technical Support
Adobe Commerce Pricing
The Adobe Commerce pricing model works on a sliding scale based on a business’s average gross sales revenue. It may cost as little as $22,000 per year, but can easily reach $100,000 per year if you need to add specific features or if your business conducts an extremely large amount of sales.
Which Tier Is Right for Your Business?
As you can see, there’s a vast difference between Adobe Commerce and Magento Open Source in terms of pricing. Determining which tier will work best for your business depends on what your business needs from its online store.
Magento Open Source is best for small businesses new to ecommerce or looking to migrate small online stores from another platform. Magento Open Source offers an array of impressive features that’ll kick off a small business’s online sales with a bang.
Conversely, Adobe Commerce ideally suits medium-sized businesses, B2B firms, and any company with multiple product catalogs and heavy website traffic. It’s also a good fit for companies that intend to expand in the near future.
Adobe’s ecommerce platforms — Adobe Commerce and Magento Open Source — each appeal to a different type of business. While both may feature a higher overall cost than some platforms, they’re much more fully featured than other top ecommerce platforms. For small and medium-sized businesses, Magento Open Source is likely the best pick for an affordable, yet powerful ecommerce solution.
Get Started With Adobe Commerce or Magento Open Source
Ready to start an online store with Magento Open Source for free? Or, are you considering an all-in-one CMS, CRM, and ERP solution for your large ecommerce business? Check out Adobe Commerce’s offerings today.