Let’s say you have a Drupal site and an eCommerce store built into that Drupal site that has been steadily growing. In addition to the hundreds of pages of content that you manage with Drupal, you now are also managing hundreds of unique SKU’s and it’s getting messy. It is probably time to consider an integration with Drupal as CMS and Magento as your eCommerce solution. Drupal is really good at content management – especially when there are different kinds of content – and Magento is great at handling lots of SKU’s and complex rules in eCommerce. Each has its own strengths, but neither work particularly well for both functions. When you have a lot of content AND a lot of SKU’s it’s time to consider an integration.
A Drupal/Magento integration can be tricky and there is no magical module on Magento connect to get the job done, but if you take the following considerations into account, you can improve your site’s functionality and make managing it much easier.
The biggest consideration for an integration is with the users, both your customers and your back end admins. Where the two platforms intersect, you need to be able to provide a single login using the same credentials for both systems. This is custom development, but worthwhile. You must consider which platform will be the master database against which to check any and all logins – or if you’ll use a third database to perform this function.
Templating is also completely different for each system. You cannot share templates across Magento and Drupal, so you will either have to design two identical templates or find a way to load the information from one platform into the other. You can have the systems live side-by-side or build a custom Magento API integration (or module in Drupal if you prefer) to then serve the content that is requested from the other. In this way, duplicate templates for menus, headers, and other universal elements aren’t required. The only duplicate formatting that would be required is for body content and side bar blocks.
Once you overcome these two considerations, your Drupal-Magento integration will help you to have a site that is easier to manage, give you more powerful tools and ultimately deliver a better experience to your users. Have questions about how to integrate Drupal and Magento to improve your site’s functionality? Contact us today.
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