Working with Magento Extension Providers at Meet Magento New York 14

This talk is from Karen Baker from Web Shop Apps, entitled "Working with Magento Extension Providers". Badly written extensions have literally caused eCommerce businesses to fail.

The Magento ecosystem consists of Magento itself, design agencies, individual developers, technology partners.

There are several types of extension providers:

  1. Domain experts
  2. Innovators
  3. Custodians - selflessly look after things
  4. Hackers
  5. Copiers

The current Magento extension marketplace is Magento Connect.

6505 extensions in Magento Connect, 33% increase since 2012. 15 extensions called Shop, 9 extensions called One Stop Checkout. 132 extensions with Ajax in the name. Half of the extension providers on Magento Connect only list free extensions.

1/3rd of extension authors on Magento Connect have “Mage” in their name, and that needs to change.

When you filter out the bad actors on Magento Connect, you come up with list of top extension providers, and when you look, none of their extensions are easy to find on Connect.

There's a top 6 Magento Connect providers producing 1 in 5 extensions on Connect.

Of those top 6 Magento Connect providers, only 1 is innovating, other 5 are copying, and Magento should stop this.

Fundamental problem of Magento extensions is that copying an extension and providing bad support is order of magnitude easier than innovating.

Bad extension authors cheating the Magento Connect system are hurting the extension authors that want to innovate.

The Magento extension market is $50mil+, and a lot of bad people that are stealing code is making that money. By taking that money out of the Magento ecosystem and into bad actors, it hurts the entire Magento ecosystem - those that aren't innovating, that are just stealing code are hurting our ability to innovate.

Magento ecosystem gets too focused on the code sometimes, and forget about the merchant. Focus on the merchant.

If something that

How to fix connect:

  • Make it plug & play
  • Give it structured format for pricing, support, etc
  • Zero tolerance approach to copying
  • Consolidate
  • Community curation
  • Quality
  • Encourage innovation
  • Revenue model for Magento - without revenue, they have no way to invest in cleaning up Magento Connect

Magento should be open and inclusive, not a clique-y club.

We need to improve engagement with merchants, collaboration between agencies, extensions and on boarding need to be simplified. There needs to be trust with extensions, and we need a faster speed to market.

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Jamie Larson