One of the biggest benefits of Magento is that its numerous out-of-the-box features can be easily extended with many more modules, created by Magento community. Although some extensions have an almost plug-and-play installation process, it’s much better to do it under control of a professional. We get requests for installing third-party extensions daily, and we accumulated a great experience of how to upgrade your website with new features while keeping it safe and high-performing. While there is no instruction to fit all different cases, here are some things to consider when installing new modules.
Find a good extension
First place to search for a good Magento module is Magento Marketlace. It is the safest place to find high-quality extensions – each one passes a scrupulous validation by Magento itself. It means that Magento controls a quality of all the products uploaded to the Marketplace and the code meets Magento high standards.
You can also get modules directly from trusted vendors. On their websites you will find information about extension features, customer reviews, prices and support conditions. If the vendor is not a Magento partner, you can run into a risk of a low-quality extension and no warranty in case something goes wrong.
Choosing a high-quality extension will help you avoid situations, when the code causes many conflicts with the other website functionality, or, in the worst case, has security holes.
Install extension with a development team
Despite the fact that almost all extensions have good installation manuals and configuration descriptions, we strongly suggest you to have a professional install it for you. Developers make sure that all the technical requirements are met, carefully test the store after installation, and will always fix unexpected issues in case they occur.
Moreover, if the extension needs to be deleted after all, a developer will make sure it is done properly and no unnecessary data is left behind.
Update extensions regularly
We strongly recommend to update extensions regularly. This way, you will have all the fixes or improvements from the latest versions. You will also avoid doing extra job of fixing something on your website, that was caused by the lack of a timely extension upgrade.
Keep the number of extensions low
Last, but not least – pay attention to the number of extensions on your website. The more customizations it has – the slower it is. Here is how it works, when a visitor goes to your website, a request to show the page is sent to a server. Then, in simple words, the server performs numerous operations to prepare the data and give it back to the browser. If a store contains a lot of additional logic from third party extensions, the amount of the server operations increases significantly even if these operations are not directly connected to the requested data. It results in additional time that is needed to process the request and the website loads slower. And you never want to keep your website visitors waiting.
We do not mean that extensions should not be installed at all – just keep the harmony and analyze the performance impact before and after the installation. And make sure you delete unneeded modules and not simply switch them off (a common mistake of Magento website managers), assuming they are no longer used by your Magento installation.
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