Envision’s New Launch: Advance Request a Quote Magento2 Extension

Envision Ecommerce is happy to announce its new release of Advance Request a Quote Magento 2 Extension. This extension enables Magento store owners to give a facility to their customers to generate a request a quote for the product for further discount.

The extension is built with some powerful and user-friendly features like bargaining feature, which makes customers’ shopping experience peerless. Plus, it also facilitates admin to approve or disapprove the proposal (requested quote) or encourage their customers to buy products at negotiable prices.

The Main Highlights of this Extension are:

– Allow customers to request a quote for more than one product at one go.

– Allow customers to request a quote through the front-end, which is available for the customers only.

– Support different type of product list

– Allow admin to easily track the incoming quote requests.

– Send email notifications to both store owners and customers for their relevant quote request.

– Allow customers to check-out from the account and re-quote the request, if the proposal has been accepted by the admin.

 

These are the some key features of our latest Magento 2 extension. Now update your e-commerce store with Advance Request a Quote Magento 2 Extension to make the ordering process faster and accessible.

At Envision Ecommerce, our entire team of certified developers continually focuses their efforts on introducing some useful extensions, plugins, etc. to make online buying and selling process easier and smoother for both seller and shopper. So always, stay tuned with us!

Get your extension here: https://codecanyon.net/item/advance-request-a-quote-magento-2-extension/20172509

An Interview with the Leading Digital Marketing Influencer and Author Tim Kitchen

Today, we are honored to have “Tim Kitchen” on board for our ongoing interview series. He is the leading digital marketing influencer and founder of Exposure Ninja (Currently, UK’s one of leading digital marketing agencies) who has written 5 books, covering the Europe’s Best selling SEO book with the title – “How to Get to the Top of Google”.

Besides his core love for digital marketing, he is a professional drummer and loves to go to the gym and watching cricket. To gain more insight into Tim Kitchen, his career journey, personal interests and his thoughts on digital marketing, let’s have a look at our recent conversation with Tim.

Envision Ecommerce: Tim, let’s begin with your career journey. How you en-tered into the Digital Marketing world? Please share your career journey with our audience.

Tim: I started digital marketing while I was a professional drummer, promoting my music online. Then I built a website for my next door neighbour, it changed his life and I was hooked! I built more websites, wrote a book and started Exposure Ninja.

Envision Ecommerce: Currently, you’re the head ninja at Exposure Ninja with more than 9 years of experience under your belt. Could you please share some biggest challenges you came across in digital marketing? How did you overcome such difficulties & challenges?

Tim: The biggest challenge is overcoming people’s scepticism with web develop-ment and digital marketing that stems from their previous poor experiences. Our industry is full of sharks, so we share everything we learn in our books, blog and podcast to demonstrate to people the effectiveness of our methods.

Envision Ecommerce: As the UK’s Bestselling SEO & Digital Marketing Author, how many online marketing books have you written till date? Which one is your favorite? And what inspires you to keep writing?

Tim: I’ve personally written 4, with a 5th one written by our team. The first one is my favourite – How to Get To The Top Of Google. People send in lovely emails about how it’s helped them increase their ranking and grow their business, and that’s really an addictive feeling.

Envision Ecommerce: Being a well-reputed SEO expert, how do you envision the future of SEO, PPC, digital PR and social media services?

Tim: Voice search will be interesting, VR will be interesting, but I think that mobile is just getting started and the speed of the transfer of attention to mobile means that most websites are built for a different audience to the one that is actually vis-iting. There’s huge opportunity there, and I think the whole area of mobile re-sponsiveness and mobile marketing is going to see a huge shake up.

Envision Ecommerce: Tim, in your opinion, what are the most common mistakes people making on their eCommerce websites that prevent them from ranking in the search engines?

Tim: Easy. Not enough text on product pages. They think that short generic prod-uct descriptions will be enough to sell their products, even to people who are un-familiar with their business. This is crazy – Amazon uses over 1,000 words on a page to sell a £1.99 ebook to an audience who is already familiar with them. Why? Because text helps to increase conversion rates and ranking, provided that it’s formatted in an attractive way, of course.

Envision Ecommerce: A lot of digital marketers can learn from you. So, according to you, what mistakes would like to indicate that, if avoided, would help emerging digital marketers?

Tim: Just regurgitating stuff they read online. Half of it is wrong and the other half is exaggerated.

Try things out for yourself, develop your own theories and test them.

Envision Ecommerce: What would you recommend to those who don’t have a big marketing budget but want to stand out among their huge competitors?

Tim: Make your site the most useful and helpful resource on your topic. You’ll pick up loads of ranking and it’s a great way to earn trust with potential custom-ers.

Envision Ecommerce: We found something interesting in one of your Facebook posts – “If you’re not blogging, you have some SERIOUS low-hanging fruit”. What would you like to say about this? And, what are the effective ways to use a blog to attract more visitors?

Tim: First write a list of all your customers’ top questions (you can find them on answerthepublic.com). Then, write blog posts answering each one in a lot of depth.

IF the posts are good, within 6 months you’ll be ranking on Google for these ques-tions. If you chose the right questions, the traffic will be qualified potential buyers and you’ll start picking up leads. It’s such a killer way to get traffic and it’s so easy.

Envision Ecommerce: Let’s move on to your personal interests besides your pro-fessional life. We know you love to play drums and won a French TV show. Please share your experience. What other things do you love to do in your spare time?

Tim: I play in a band in my spare time and the TV show was a competition to find the World’s best covers band. We were an unknown band going up against these huge YouTube stars, and the French people voted for their favourite. We didn’t understand what was going on because everything was in French, but they ush-ered us onto the stage and raised the curtain and handed us a trophy. We thought maybe it was a losers’ trophy, but it turns out that we had won!

Other than accidentally winning French TV contests, I love going to the gym and watching cricket (I live just over the road from iconic cricket venue Trent Bridge).

We at Envision Ecommerce would like to thank you for taking the time to have an interview with us. We wish you best of luck with your professional future en-deavors.

New launch: Envision Advanced Self-Assistant WordPress Plugin

We at Envision Ecommerce are thrilled to announce our next biggest yet latest launch of WordPress Plugin i.e. Envision Advanced Self-Assistant. This plugin allows WordPress owners to give their customers a quick self-support without a need of a sales representative. The plugin works like a live chat, and responses to customers’ queries in real-time.

The plugin is built with some outclass features, which help WordPress owners to easily add and manage the smart questions, categories, tags, question rankings, theme settings, POPup settings, EECOM analytics and more via back-end. Moreover, this plugin can easily be modified or customized as per the requirements!

The Main Highlights of this Plugin are:

  • Allow WordPress owner to create smart questions via back-end.
  • Allow admin to add and assign different categories and tags to each smart question.
  • Response to customers’ queries in real-time with no sales executive handling clients.
  • Allow admin to manage or update the rank of smart questions
  • Allow customers to replace their queries or questions with the smart question for fast response.
  • Admin can manage the entire list of customers through this plugin.
  • Help admin to keep the complete record of “Reply to Customer”.
  • Admin can change or set the theme of self-assistant POPup widget.
  • EASA Front-end POPUP Settings can also be changed.
  • Allow admin to create and manage EASA company types.
  • Allow admin to generate more than one script for the “Reply to Customers.”
  • This plugin facilitate store owners to view Analytic reports of their store which includes new vs returning visitors, Site content and so on.

 

Overall, it’s a WordPress plugin, which supports both WordPress store owners and online shoppers in improving their user’s experience. Get your plugin here: http://demo.envisionecommerce.com/new-launch-envision-advanced-self-assistant-wordpress-plugin/

Magento 2 Developer Bootcamp By MagentoU in Chandigarh

Envision Ecommerce is always striving hard to help grow Magento. Our Magento certified developers and solution specialist regularly conduct Chandigarh Magento Meet, attend Magento-centric events and our “How to” Magento blog category is continually contributing to Magento community.

To raise our level of contributions towards the growth of Magento Community, we’ve partnered with Wagento (Magento Enterprise Solution Partner) who has Magento U Authorized Trainers to conduct Magento 2 Developer Bootcamp in Chandigarh and TriCity Region. It is a great opportunity for Magento developers & PHP developers to become a fully-skilled Magento 2 trained developer with this official Magento 2 training. This not only helps you increase your skills but will also help you get a recognition in your region.

Register your seat now, visit: https://www.wagento.com/magento-training/fundamentals-of-magento-2-development-bootcamp-chandigarh

 

Course Benefits

1. Free Access to Magento On-Demand Course For 120 Days.

2. Get Magento U Certificate on Successful Course Completion.

3. Training Exclusively by Magento U Authorized Instructor.

4. Available at The Most Discounted Price.

 

Benefits Of Classroom Activities

1. Trainer will discuss and explain tough portion of Magento 2 where candidate can have difficulties.

2. Trainer will conduct In class code development exercise so it can help candidates to learn Best Practices and Coding standards of Magento 2.

3. Trainer will discuss about the best possible approach for the customization and module development.

4. Trainer has executed multiple projects in Magento 2 and he will share that experience with all the candidates.

5. On the last day, there will be a “Knowledge Assessment” session which will help candidate to know what they have learned and in which area still they need improvement.

 

Duration

Classroom: 24 hours (3 days | 8 hours a day)

Knowledge Assessment: 1 day | 8 hours

Maximum available seats are Only 10.

 

So, don’t waste time in thinking and join this course to groom your career in the Magento world! If you still have any query regarding this Bootcamp, contact us at [email protected]

Envision Ecommerce Interviews Andrei Vashkevich, Amasty’s Founder & CEO

We’re back with another inspiring interview and this time it’s with the founder & CEO of Amasty, Andrei Vashkevich. Andrei started his journey as a developer. Currently he is managing the whole company as its CEO and only looks after the management and business relations. Besides his professional life, he enjoys the 20th century rock music and loves traveling. So without any further ado, let’s read more about him.

Envision Ecommerce: Andrei Vashkevich, our research shows that you are an experienced Magento Certified and Zend Certified developer and also the founder, CTO and CEO at Amasty. But by chance, if someone doesn’t know you well, could you please introduce yourself and shed some light on your career journey till date?

Andrei Vashkevich: Well, I started my journey as a developer in primary school, participated in programming competitions and created my first HTML site when I was twelve.

After that, I took interest in C++, Java, PHP, and other technologies. With time, I started to work as a developer, growing from a junior specialist to a senior developer and a department lead.

When Amasty was founded, I developed a lot of extensions myself and was managing the dev department, too. Now my focus is switched to business relations and managing the whole company as its CEO.

Envision Ecommerce: You have been working hard since your inception in the IT industry and then in Magento field, and that results in having a proficient team & company like Amasty. What kind of challenges did you face during your initial days? How did you overcome those problems and difficulties?

Andrei Vashkevich: When we started Amasty, there were only three of us – Alex Stelmakh, Val Grikian, and me. This kind of start means that nothing is easy!

We learned everything from scratch – from investigating the market needs to basic products promotion, from providing support for our first clients to hiring the very first colleagues, and we’re proud that some of them are still with us today.

We had only two steady things – our vast experience of web development and our determination to build great e-commerce products. And those helped us to overcome each and every challenge.

Envision Ecommerce: What inspired you to start using Magento as an eCommerce solution and to become a Magento Certified? What are the benefits of having such certifications in your career?

Andrei Vashkevich: Magento is a well-known, complex and innovative solution. Working with it means that your business becomes global, which, on the one hand, gives you more opportunities when it comes to company growth, and, on the other hand, it’s some serious competition and higher standards of products and services, which inevitably means you are to comply with them by expanding your knowledge and expertise.

Besides, the e-commerce domain was a very promising business field back in the days of Amasty birth, and now, after 8 years, it’s still growing.

Magento certification is another form of education. Of course, I was an experienced Magento developer when I got certified, but when you are preparing for the examination, you get to understand the structure of the system deeper. It’s more important than just a badge on your profile.

Envision Ecommerce: As we see Magento 2 is now updated with many fixes, what would you recommend to those merchants who are upgrading to Magento 2? Do you think that the time is right to adopt Magento 2 as a perfect eCommerce platform?

Andrei Vashkevich: Yes, I think that now it’s time to embrace Magento 2 fully. After a year of stabilization, it is now very usable, the market has been saturated with extensions, and there are people who started to work with M2 from its very beginning, and now they are true professionals.

In other words, now Magento 2 can provide a merchant with all the infrastructure needed for full-scale e-commerce performance.

Envision Ecommerce: You have attended many Magento-centric events. Do you remember something? The Meet Magento PL 2014! J And, you mentioned in one of your tweets – “The second #mm14pl day starts with presentation on automated dev environment. A bit nervous about my speech at 11:00”. How was your experience of speech?

Andrei Vashkevich Magento Speech

Andrei Vashkevich: That was great! I don’t often speak at events, and it was somewhat a new experience for me, although I’m not a newbie when it comes to sharing ideas with the community.

Speaking at events has some magic behind the curtains. It’s not enough to possess knowledge and even to be confident at what you’re broadcasting to the audience. It’s not like presenting your company to a potential partner or talking to a client.

Taking the stage is scary for everybody, from junior specialists to CEOs. So, to perform successfully, you have to do the enormous job: to work on the topic, to prepare a presentation, to practice in front of your colleagues, and finally to have your courage and not to forget everything you worked for on that stage, in front of the crowd.

So apart from the joy of contributing to the community, it’s a great way to upgrade your social skills and to learn stress and anxiety management before important occasions.

Envision Ecommerce: Please share the importance of attending these types of Magento-centric events. What are the benefits of such events for the Magento developers, new participants and the Magento community?

Andrei Vashkevich: I might sound a bit boring here, but communication is everything when it comes to entities like the Magento family. We know it from our own experience, because we have organized two Meet Magento events in Belarus.

Our department heads and co-founders, including myself, often visit Magento events to find new business opportunities and to support relationships we have already built with companies all over the world.

For developers, it’s always helpful to listen to their skilled colleagues on technical tracks, to ask questions about new topics and to continue talking about them after the presentations – I mean, these steaming hot discussions in the hallways and on after parties are a living proof.

For merchants, conferences are a good source of new ideas, from more effective use of Magento to e-commerce marketing tips, and you can also get to know new products and services, both for Magento and for cross-platform environments.

The Sharing is caring saying wasn’t born out of nowhere. Right now we’re getting ready for visiting Magento Live UK, and we’re also a Magento Live UK Networking Breakfast Sponsor.

Envision Ecommerce: Since you have leadership, management, public speaking and blogging skills as well, what other skills you required to be the successful Founder and CEO of an extension development agency like Amasty?

Andrei Vashkevich: Well, it’s hard to point out something here, because my everyday activities require a complex combination of absolutely various hard and soft skills. But I’ll try to highlight some of the skills I’ve been working on recently.

First of all, my strong experience of web development plays an enormous role in the process of managing the company. I’m happy I can talk to Amasty developers, understand their issues, challenges and thoughts and help them on their journey of building Magento extensions. The same goes to Amasty Co-Founder Alex.

Secondly, I have some strong beliefs about the essence of quality services or products, and I hope that my own attitude and approach to delivering those is an example for my team, because it’s more efficient than just talking about how it should be done.

Thirdly, I love what I do, and our mission as a company is not only developing products, but also creating a workplace where people enjoy coming to every day. I do hope we managed to create this atmosphere at Amasty.

Envision Ecommerce: As a part of our interview process, we request you to share a picture of your workstation or the best moment that you have captured in any events. Please share.

Andrei Vashkevich Work Station

Andrei Vashkevich: This is one of my working places.

Envision Ecommerce: Could you please explain the role you play in Magento 2 Amasty extension development process?

Andrei Vashkevich: Some time ago, when I was an Amasty CTO, I was involved into the process even more and participated in each and every step of building an extension, from collecting feedback and investigating the market to managing the dev department and helping the team to dig into the new platform, from working with the support department to solving issues we had when the first M2 releases were not very stable and changed drastically from version to version.

Now, as the company has grown, we hired more product managers, appointed a new dev department head and implemented Agile methodologies, so there’s no need for me to manage and help the team with small or routine tasks any more. I am still with my colleagues when it comes to big decisions, and I’m proud that they are capable of self-management. The result of the whole team’s work is that we became the first Premier Magento Extension Builder Partner.

Envision Ecommerce: There is a great role of motivators and influencers in everyone’s life. So where do you get your inspirations from?

Andrei Vashkevich: My family, of course. And the team – believe it or not, but Amasty lives thanks to my colleagues, which are in love with their work and are striving to achieve the shared aims.

Envision Ecommerce: We have asked a lot about Magento. Let’s deviate a little and move to your personal interests besides your professional life. What do you do in your free time? What are your personal interests and hobbies? How do you manage your family besides your professional life?
Andrei Vashkevich family

Andrei Vashkevich:  I travel a lot, and my special love is Spain, which I I’ve been discovering inside out and will never get tired of this wonderful country. Also, I enjoy the 20th century rock music. My work is a part of my life, as simple as that, so I don’t need to figure out how to separate church and state – it is deeply connected, which I enjoy very much.

Upgrade to 1.9.3.3 or Apply SUPEE-8167 – Latest PayPal IPN Upgrade Notification for Magento Merchants

If you’re a Magento merchant who has been using PayPal IPN (Instant Payment Notification) service, you have possibly received an email alerting you to upgrade to 1.9.3.3 or Apply SUPEE-8167….

If you’re a Magento merchant who has been using PayPal IPN (Instant Payment Notification) service, you have possibly received an email alerting you to upgrade to 1.9.3.3 or Apply SUPEE-8167 in order to avoid this service disruption.

This upgrade will last till the end of June, i.e. June 30, 2017. And, from June 30, 2017, PayPal IPN service will no longer permit merchants to utilize HTTP while posting messages back to PayPal for verification. As a merchant, you will only be allowed to use HTTPS for such postbacks.

If you’ve not made the essential changes, we urge you to do the followings before this service disruption starts affecting your Magento store:

• Enterprise Edition 1.14.3.3 or apply the SUPEE-8167 patch     
• Community Edition 1.9.3.3 or apply the SUPEE-8187 patch     
• Magento 2.0.15 when it becomes accessible (probably the next week of June)

Note: If you’re running Magento 2.1.x, there is no need of any update as all Magento 2.1.x versions already comply with this change.

Full technical details can be found at https://www.paypal-knowledge.com/infocenter/index?page=content&widgetview=true&id=FAQ1916&viewlocale=en_US. Besides, Community Edition Download Page (https://magento.com/tech-resources/download) includes the patch to download it.

Because this security upgrade is too technical in nature, we suggest you consult with professional developers to apply such changes to your online store. Moreover, our certified Magento developers are ready to help you as they have successfully upgraded or applied such security patches for over 80+ stores earlier. Connect today with our Magento services to apply this upgrade or patch fast & safe for you.

Doctor CRM – Deliver More Connected Care to Your Patients!

Note: To checkout the backend of the CRM, use following details,

http://112.196.79.13/drcrm/admin/login
username : [email protected]
password : 123456

In its quest to discover more innovative products, Envision Ecommerce adds another advanced feather in its cap with the roll out of “Doctor CRM”. Doctor CRM is a full-fledged customizable CRM incorporated with a mobile app. This CRM is specifically designed for the sole purpose of helping all types of physicians so that they can proactively manage their clinics in their own ways.

Doctor CRM solution comes with a variety of patient management features and a compelling mobile app to keep doctors and patients connected. Since the CRM is connected with a mobile app, it allows patients to connect with doctors via mobile app and doctors can easily manage this app through this CRM. While this solution is currently designed for pediatricians only, but we do offer customization services to make it a perfect fit for your unique clinical needs.

The Main Highlights of Our Doctor CRM Include:

A full access for doctors to all its backend modules

backend modules

A dashboard overview page to see an overview of all frequent records like total patients, total feedback, today’s appointment, vaccination availability, etc.

Dashboard Overview

A custom profile section for doctors toto add personal image and other details like short & long biography, educational background and qualifications along with upload documents facility.

custom profile section

All Parents” section to keep records of all parents’ details

All Parents” section to keep records of all parents’ details

All Childs” section to keep records of children’s details plus their all vaccination details like vaccination categories, vaccination list and pending vaccinations, etc.

All Childs” section to keep records of children’s details

Automatic Vaccination chart generation, according to specific child’s DOB (Date of Birth) and name.

Automatic Vaccination chart generation

Growth chart calculations of a child, according to age (in months) / weight (in Kg), in “Edit” child page.

Growth chart calculations of a child, according to age

Easy Searching and sorting of all records by any column.

Easy Searching and sorting of all records by any column.

Medication brand management.

Medication brand management

Appointment schedule calendar for doctors to see scheduled appointments and to schedule their availability for a specific appointment.

Appointment schedule calendar for doctors to see scheduled appointments

A record of unavailable vaccinations

A record of unavailable vaccinations

Blog management for doctors to provide health tips to patients.

Blog management for doctors to provide health tips to patients

Push notification feature to send notifications to parents on their mobile app.

Push notification feature to send notifications to parents on their mobile app

BMI calculator for doctors’ quick help to get child’s BMI (Body Mass Index) (whether a child’s weight is appropriate according to his/her height and age or not)

Automatic Vaccination Chart generation system & BMI Calculator strictly follow WHO standards.

Doctor CRM Mobile App

As you know our CRM solution is connected with a mobile app and this app is beneficial for parents. It helps parents to have electronic medical records of their children instead of saving bulky and messy paper files. The parents can use this app to:

Create their own profiles

Create their children’s profiles by adding all details like child’s image, name, Date of Birth, Age in Months, etc.

Book an appointment with doctor by choosing a suitable date, time and purpose of appointment, etc.

Keep a check of appointments under “My Appointments” section and cancel a pre-scheduled appointment.

View appointment history

Upload documents regarding doctor’s prescription after an appointment with a doctor.

Track all important information regarding vaccinations lists, vaccination done, etc.

Doctor CRM is a complete solution for doctors to manage all their patients in one place. No more paperwork, no paper-based medical records, i.e. a comprehensive paperless solution for doctors and patients. So what are you waiting for? Grab this CRM & app and get rid of your hectic clinical processes.

Just stay tuned for our next innovative product launch!

 

Envision Ecommerce Interviews Amasty’s Co-Founder & CSO, Alexander Stelmakh

It is so heartwarming to have our next interview with Alexander Stelmakh. He is a Chief Strategy Officer (CSO), Co-founder at Amasty – a leading Magento extensions development company. In this interview, Alex gives us a peep into his past life on how he reached to the current position. He speaks at International Magento Meets and loves to offer consultancy to the Magento developers around the world.

Moreover, in his spare time, Alexander keeps himself relaxed as he believes that productive work needs fresh, full rest periods and likes to spend time with friends by playing squash, organizing bike trip or participating in a pub-quiz.

And here is one more interesting thing about Alex: he is an advanced scuba diver.

Yes, you heard that right! So without any further ado, let’s read his interview:

Envision Ecommerce: Alex, you are currently a Chief Strategy Officer (CSO), Co-Founder at Amasty. How did you kick-start your career and reach to this position? Was it all strategic (as you’re a strategic planner) or you just moved towards the career you most loved?

Alex: I actually did what I like and tried to earn some money with it. I fell in love with programming in my school years, so without any hesitation, I choose to study computer science at university.

You know, university years are full of temptations, but despite I combined lectures with some freelancing and hanging out, I managed to graduate with excellence. Not sure if I could repeat it again though 🙂 Nevertheless, it helped me significantly to apply for my first job, where I built a career from a junior developer to the head of the development department.

For the sake of building professional contacts and getting a different experience, I moved to another company to a similar position. Then, around the year 2008, I heard about Magento for the first time. And it was a turning point in my life. 16-hours working day in a small office with a few friends, blizzard-fast releases, quick market analysis, smoke testing and nights with coffee and support questions…

Nowadays in Amasty, I carry on multiple projects at the edge of marketing, product management and support, aiming to reach global strategic goals, like increasing market share and establishing mutually beneficial partnerships. Sounds a bit official, but it is a downright truth.

Envision Ecommerce: Being a Magento Certified Specialist, what are the benefits of having such certification in your career? It would be helpful for our readers to know the importance of Magento certifications.

Alex: Well, I do believe education is quite important in engineering, that is why I passed Magento certification and I’m proud that I was one of the first people in my country, Belarus, who did it. Then I organized internal courses in Amasty, and now we have eight certified Magento professionals in the development department and one in the support department. See https://u.magento.com/certification/directory/index/?q=amasty

Surprisingly enough, the most valuable part of the certification is … the preparation process, because it provokes you to dive deeper in the system, understand relations and internal logic, as well as new ways to handle routines.

It helps us a lot to build robust solutions in compliance with all official standards and internal Magento architecture. There are also evident benefits for our customers. They receive stable, upgrade-friendly and fast-working extensions. It’s true for our partners as well. As you know, we have plenty of partner companies all around the world, who assist us with custom development. See https://amasty.com/partners.html

Our partners appreciate code quality and standards compliance in our extensions, which means easy maintenance and customization.

Now we are looking forward to the new Magento 2 education program and hope to jump in as early as possible.

Envision Ecommerce: As a speaker, you have attended so many Magento Meetups, conferences and events, including Meet Magento Russia, Meet Magento Poland, Meet Magento Czech Republic, etc. What benefits do you get from such events?

Alex: Indeed, I did several presentations at various Magento events, mainly at Meet Magento in multiple countries, and attended the Developer Paradise, quite an outstanding event I have to admit. Amasty, as a company, was also a sponsor of many Meetups, including, the one in New York. As Magento Premier Partner https://blog.amasty.com/amasty-partners-magento/ we also plan to visit Magento Live in London this year.

Why am I engaged in all this stuff? Because it gives me a chance to get out of a comfort zone, learn something new, sort out my current knowledge and topic understanding, meet interesting people and make useful contacts.

amasty flag

Envision Ecommerce: Besides your Magento certification, what other certifications do you have?

Alex: I started my career as a developer, so I have several technology-based verified competences. Most notable is the Zend PHP Certificate,   which I got back in 2006.

Zend PHP Certificate

Zend, as you probably know, is the base framework for Magento, so this certificate was most useful.

Here’s an interesting side fact. Magento for a long time was a featured application on the Zend Framework website. As a matter of fact, this gave Magento platform an initial boost of popularity.

Although I was keen on developing and working with code, then I moved towards project and product management. Because it was required for a lead manager. At that time I got inspired by lean production and theory of constraints and thought about PMI certification in classic project management. But, as I said, I came across Magento, put out all theory, buckled down and started programming.

Right now the company counts over 40 employees and I’m in the process of achieving Scrum Master Certification, as we plan to split support and development teams in Amasty and use different approaches for the organization of work.

Envision Ecommerce: Our readers are eager to know about the Magento learning resources you usually follow. Can you please share a book or a website with our audience?

Alex: It’s a very important question taking into account how much low-quality content is available across the Internet these days.

Nonetheless, there are two websites I stick to and recommend to use anyone who works with Magento.

magento stackexchange

Envision Ecommerce: We found something about you, “Alex is a guru of questions to speakers” :). What would you say about this?

Alex: I would say you are flattering me 🙂

Nonetheless, as a speaker, I hate and love questions at the same time. Hate, because being asked a question is always a stressful situation. Love because it clearly shows your speech got a response and attracted attention.

When I listen to some presentation I usually ask a question. First of all to clarify some vague points, and, more importantly, to understand the author’s attitude to the subject. In any case, asking a smart question is a great way to build a rapport with the speaker, which allows you to continue the communication later. So I keep practicing this skill 🙂

Envision Ecommerce: What would you say if you are asked to give a piece of guidance to the Magento merchants who are upgrading their eCommerce stores to the latest version of Magento 2?

Alex: The thing is, so called “upgrade” is not required anymore.

Previously obvious question now becomes controversial having the latest breaking news from the Magento in mind. https://magento.com/blog/magento-news/ongoing-magento-1-support

As they have decided to continue M1 support, merchants receive more options.

I personally see no reason to move stable working Magento 1 store to a new Magento 2 platform right now.

The benefits, like slightly improved performance or better UX for the checkout process, are easily covered by 3rd party extensions. But the disadvantages a more complicated and less stable platform are all here.

Don’t get me wrong, however, if you are launching a brand new shop, Magento 2 is an excellent choice, but the upgrade is a different story.

Will love to see your counter arguments in the comments.

Envision Ecommerce: As for your experience in Magento, what are the pros and cons of using Magento in development? How do you compare Magento with other popular ecommerce platforms?

Alex: Being a die-hard supporter of Magento, it is quite difficult for me to provide an unbiased opinion, so I’d rather skip this question. The only remark is while Magento learning curve might be quite high, it’s not because the system is complicated. No, it’s because it has a lot of functions and it is really flexible.

Envision Ecommerce: As a part of our interview process, we request you to share a picture of your workstation or the best moment that you have captured in any events. Please share.

Alex: My working place is extremely minimalistic and it is done on purpose.

Alexander work place

I often work at home in the morning, as don’t want anything to disturb me in the most productive time of the day.

My motto is “focus on one task, do it and move to the next“. However, it is nearly impossible to maintain step by step mode during the whole day, so I separate important tasks that move me and Amasty towards long-term goals from communication, daily routines and small stuff.

Envision Ecommerce: Let’s get aside from work life and move to your personal interests. How do you spend your time besides work? Are you a family guy? Do you love playing sports, watching movies and hanging out with friends?

Alex: Yes, I’m a family guy! I very fortunately met the only women who could snatch me away from Magento 🙂 Now we live in Minsk and adore our 2-year-old welsh corgi Lucia.

Alexander with his wife

I honestly feel that productive work requires fresh, full rest periods, so I have never regretted the time spent with my friends, be it squash, a bike-trip or a pub-quiz.

Alexander with his co-workers

Unfortunately, with so many work-related tasks and outdoor activities, I have absolutely no time for TV, so I have missed most of the TV series and movies 🙁

Envision Ecommerce: Although now you have become the inspiration for many because of your expertise & firsthand knowledge, however, we would like to know about your inspirations. Let us know the names who have been the most influential mentors in your profession?

Alex: I had started my career before LinkedIn was founded, so my first mentors were books.

While younger people often find books boring, I personally value reading. Although books require bigger initial time “investing” in comparison with articles or podcasts, the “profit” is worth the efforts. Reading in my university years gave me a solid background I’ve been using till today.

This is because now and then I usually look not for modern technology only, but for the time-resistant general approaches and methodology as well.

As a result, Steven McConnell, Martin Fowler and Joel Spolsky have become neighbors on my bookshelf for a while.

And I always feel software development is something more than just writing code. Because there is so much interaction between people, starting from the initial requirements gathering and finishing with the presentation of the final program version. I do believe, under these circumstances, people are more important than processes. So, as you might already have guessed, I early adopted agile methodology ideas from Kent Beck and Ken Schwaber.

But if you let me set aside the professional sphere, where I may list more than enough names of the great leaders, I’d like to mention a name, maybe not so popular nowadays in Europe and USA, but, with no doubts an outstanding person. I’m speaking about Mahatma Gandhi, who has changed the world by his ideas, not by sheer force or a plethora of money.

Envision Ecommerce: Who would you recommend interviewing next on Envision Ecommerce? Could you please suggest some names of your colleagues, friends, or people who have a core love for Magento?

Alex: I’m proud to be familiar with some brilliant minds in the Magento world and definitely recommend to reach them out.

Among them are

Marius Strajeru – StackExchange guru, Magento community super star 🙂

Fooman’s founder Kristof Ringleff – a person behind plenty of superb Magento free extensions;

Viacheslav Kravchuk from Atwix, who always focused on customers’ success while providing Magento customizations services;

Ivan Chepurny – a former Magento core team developer and leader, well known for his handy unit testing framework;

Kuba Zwolinski – a top performing manager, sports guy and indispensable organizer of Magento events in Poland.

And of course, my best friend and colleague, Amasty’s CEO – Andrei Vashkevich. His main skill is getting things done and done at the best possible quality level.

I’m sure there are many more really influential people I don’t know in person and will love to see interviews with them and probably make professional connections.

How to get logged in customer data in Magento2?

First you need to create a object instance:
?$om = \Magento\Framework\App\ObjectManager::getInstance();

First you need to create a object instance:

?$om = \Magento\Framework\App\ObjectManager::getInstance();

After that:

?php
    $customerSession = $om->get('Magento\Customer\Model\Session');
    if($customerSession->isLoggedIn()) {
        echo   $customerSession->getCustomer()->getId()."
";  // get Customer Id
        echo   $customerSession->getCustomer()->getName()."
";  // get  Full Name
        echo   $customerSession->getCustomer()->getEmail()."
"; // get Email Name
        echo   $customerSession->getCustomer()->getGroupId()."
";  // get Customer Group Id
      }  
?

Though, if you find difficult or need more clarity regarding this “How to” or would like to add some suggestions to this solution, do drop a comment below or query at [email protected]. Our certified Magento team will give you a positive solution to all your Magento related queries with positive ROI!

Interview with 2017 Magento Top Contributor from India – Mohan Natarajan

We’re again here to carry on with our series of interviews with industry’s great leaders and influencers. Today, we are pleased to have Mohan Natarajan with us. He is a strong and a self-motivated programmer who is now the chief extension guy behind DCKAP. With more than 8 years of experience in Magento, Mohan Natarajan is one among few in Magento ecosystem to have all four Magento certifications (Developer, Developer Plus, Front End Developer and Solution Specialist). He is one of the TOP Magento Contributors from India in the recent Magento Live India 2017. Being a huge fan of the Magento Community, Mohan is glued to Twitter, Magento Forums and Magento Stack Exchange, plus organizing the local Magento meetups in Chennai, India.

Besides his love for Magento, Mohan likes to watch movies and hanging out with his friends in his personal life. Let’s know more about Mohan:

Envision Ecommerce: Mohan, currently you are working as a Magento Certified Solution Specialist at DCKAP. How long have you been working with Magento? Could you briefly shed some light on your career journey till date?

Mohan: I started my career in Innuendo Technology Solutions in 2009 and worked for various B2C clients across the globe and in 2011, I moved to DCKAP and worked as a Magento Developer and handled several B2C and B2B projects. Currently, I’m the Head of Extensions at DCKAP and managing a team to develop enriched Magento Extensions for the community.

Envision Ecommerce: As you have completed all Magento certifications (Developer, Developer Plus, Front End Developer and Solution Specialist), why did you prefer to connect yourself only with Magento? And, what are the benefits of having such certifications in your career? It would be helpful for our readers to know the importance of Magento certifications.

Mohan: Very Interesting question – “Why did I prefer to connect myself only with Magento?” Even I’ve asked myself the same question many times. Initially, I worked in few ‘Joomla’ and ‘WordPress’ projects, but later I didn’t get much chance to explore different CMS/Frameworks. Certifications help me to realize where I am and it encourages me to learn more. Magento Certification is a matter of pride and it stands out as a proof of my expertise and encourages me to learn more. In general, certifications demonstrate our dedication, motivation and technical knowledge on a specific platform.

Envision Ecommerce: Being a Magento Certified Solution Specialist you have a sound knowledge regarding the ins and outs of Magento. So what would you say if you are asked to give a piece of guidance to the Magento merchants who are upgrading their eCommerce stores to the latest version of Magento 2?

Mohan: Very good question. Following will be my guidance. This is the right time to start migrating the project from M1 to M2. Document all your existing features and compare with Magento2 native module. Prepare a checklist with the list of third party modules needed for your store and check those modules in Magento Marketplace or wherever you find the Magento Extensions. Because we don’t want to spend too much time to develop the module from the scratch. Please work on the data migration first and see what are the bottlenecks on the data migrations and solve the issue.

Envision Ecommerce: Share your most memorable moments, awards and achievements in your professional life till date?

Mohan: First, when I completed my Magento Solutions Specialist, I felt very happy because by then, I had completed all 4 Magento Certifications and secondly, when I got an opportunity to speak in Magento Imagine 2017, I felt very recognized.

And lastly, when I saw my name listed in ‘Top Contributors’ Magento Live India, 2017, I was overjoyed.

Envision Ecommerce: You have attended Magento Imagine2017 as a speaker. Was this your life’s first Magento-centric event where you contributed as a speaker? Please share your experience with our audience and what benefits did you get from this role?

Mohan: Yes, Magento Imagine 2017 is my first venture as a speaker. This is one of the most memorable moments in my career. I actually got a chance to interact with many people in Magento. After my session, I got to have good interaction with people. I discussed with various B2B merchants and how we DCKAP as a team, helps them to build/improve their store.

Envision Ecommerce: What did you feel when you saw your name among TOP Magento Contributors of India in Magento Live India 2017? Were you expecting that? Or what else were you expecting?

Mohan: I was very very happy when I looked my name in ‘Top Magento contributors’ list of India. That was something beyond my imaginations and all I expected was just some speaking opportunity. It was a great pleasure to be the one among ‘Top Contributors’.

Envision Ecommerce: Mohan, how do you envision the future of Magento after the release of Magento 2? How do you think Magento 2 will impact the eCommerce industry?

Mohan: Magento2 is getting more and more stable nowadays. We can expect a big move in next 2 quarters. Already many of the customers working on moving from Magento1.x to 2.x for better scalability and features. Especially, for B2B, Magento has lot more features. We can expect the move of more B2B customers to Magento from other different platforms.

Envision Ecommerce: As a part of our interview process, we request you to share a picture of your workstation or the best moment that you have captured in any events. Please share.

Mohan:Working table

Envision Ecommerce: Currently, you are the head of extensions at DCKAP? So, what is your advice for others who need to develop a new extension for Magento 2.0? Can you please name 5 of the most important problem-solving extensions that you recommend using with every Magento website?

Mohan: If you are exploring options to build new extensions, instead of brainstorming ideas, we need to first find the problem, then it is very easy to find the solution. We need to check if the extensions are already available in the market. Or else we’ll land up building the same extension which is already available. If we really think a particular idea will add value to the existing extension, we can redesign it. I don’t wish to mention any specific vendor for most common problem-solving extensions. Below I’ve listed the five most problem-solving extensions which I recommend based on my knowledge and experience.

1. Improved search – Cloud based
2. Layered Navigation
3. One step checkout
4. Quick order
5. Product FAQ

Envision Ecommerce: We know you have organized several Magento Meetups in Chennai, India and attended many Magento Meetups around the world. How many Magento events have you attended and organized till date? In your opinion, what are the advantages of attending such Magento-centric events?

Mohan: We actually started Chennai Magento Meetup in 2014 and so far we’ve organized 6 Magento Meetups. We are one of the largest Magento meetup group with 392 members as of today. I’m attending Magento Imagine from 2014 and I’ve attended few local meetups in the US as well. I attended Los Angeles Magento Meetup in Magento office at Culver City, LA, US. Recently I attended Magento Live India @Bangalore. Meetups help to learn and share your knowledge with each other and also you will get connected with some great people.

Envision Ecommerce: Mohan, we know you have been blogging and contributing to Magento community. So, when did you start blogging? What is your motivation for this?

Mohan: I started blogging 6 years back. I always wish to share my thoughts and feelings to my community. I believe it will help me to position myself in this industry and technology. My blog helps me to share my current passion online. When I started my career, I referred so many blogs and forums, but after then I realized to own a blog and share the knowledge to my community. Knowledge sharing generates fresh ideas and it will deepen our knowledge.

Envision Ecommerce: Besides your multi-faceted personality in your professional life, how do you spend your time besides work? Are you a family guy? 🙂 Do you love to play sports, watching movies and hanging out with friends?

Mohan: I’m single 🙂 and I’m with my parents. I often spend time watching movies and hanging out with my friends. I read Quora when bored. I visit Shopping Malls on the weekend and spend time with relatives as well. Regarding Sports, I don’t play outdoor games. In the office, I hangout with my friends to play table tennis and refresh myself.

Envision Ecommerce: You have become the inspiration for many because of your expertise & firsthand knowledge, however, we would like to know about your inspirations. So, name any 3 people who have been your most influential mentors or role models in your profession?

Mohan: Very good question. Thank you so much for asking this specific question. I’m glad that I got an opportunity to introduce the below people:

Gowtham Rajendran– Gowtham and I are friends since college and we share the same passion towards technology. He is my great inspiration.

Karthik Chidambaram & DCKAP Team– Karthik is the Founder and CEO of DCKAP and he gave me a lot of opportunities to excel and grow professionally, I’m always thankful to him and DCKAP team.

Last but not the least, Gopal Masilamani– Gopal is my Ex- Manager and he helped me shape my career and guided me whenever needed. I learned a lot from him and he was a great Mentor. He is a great well-wisher of mine and he reaches me first with his wishes for my success.

Thanks for this opportunity and it was a pleasure answering all your questions.

We also thank you for this interview and wish you & your entire DCKAP team many more years of continued success!