Drupal + Ubercart Vs. Oscommerce Vs. Magento
Want to know about Drupal+ubercart and OSCommerce? Vizteck is giving you a step-by-step detailed guide for it.
December 12, 2012
I have been asked this question a couple of times. With so many options in the open-source world for e-commerce stores, clients are often thinking about which open-source solution to choose for their online shop. It's crucial what you choose because depending on your project requirements, one system may serve the purpose better than the other. Choosing the wrong system might land you into trouble with huge custom development costs or deciding to build from scratch using another system later. I will try to compare the three to help you get a better idea of what each system has to offer.
My main comparison would be between Drupal + Ubercart and Magento but I have discussed OSCommerce because many stores are still using it for their e-commerce requirements. Complete development from scratch is something that is not discussed because I consider it a waste with so many out-of-the-box solutions available unless you are building something revolutionary.
The first option is the odd one out because drupal is a content management system with so many things to offer other than e-commerce and the other two are solutions that have only one focus and that is e-commerce. In Drupal, e-commerce is just a plugin but the strong framework has made us use drupal for several e-commerce projects and a top choice for any website that requires extensive customization and strong content management features.
When it comes to Drupal, we got two options, an e-Commerce Plugin, and an Ubercart plugin. In comparison, Ubercart surely stood out among the two as a lot of problems in core areas in the e-commerce plugins plus bad reviews on the community stopped us from exploring the e-commerce plugin further. Ubercart has a solid team of core developers and all the things are simple and easy to use. The updates to the community are much more frequent and it's much easier to set up.
Having said all this, Drupal + Ubercart is good for anyone looking for a strong content management system and wants features like blogs, social networking, forums, and directories and also wants to sell online with basic e-commerce features. One can also cover advanced e-commerce features as modules are available but would require expert handling and some custom development work to fix some bugs or make things work your way. Custom development becomes feasible in this scenario because of the other things required in the solution.
Now, let's focus on open-source e-commerce giants, Magento and OSCommerce. Oscommerce was the top choice for many stores for so many years with a large number of modules and a strong core framework enhanced and stabilized over several years. Magento is a new player in the market and has overtaken OSCommerce as a top choice for new online stores. I read this transcript of Magento’s creator interview here and found out that his agency was using OSCommerce for several years before they decided to write down their e-commerce framework.
It was the process of evolution of the internet that brought online shopping to a stage where OSCommerce couldn’t be enhanced more and a new e-commerce framework was needed. Oscommerce was there when SEO and tableless structures were not important and community-developed modules with time to fulfill their needs. Having a solid experience with OSCommerce and knowing its limitations, Magento was developed.
You can check the detailed feature list here.
Magento filled in the gap of what was missing from OSCommerce and is now the top choice of community developers for creating plugins and shop owners. If you need a strong and easy-to-use e-commerce solution with simple content management needs. Magento is the way to go. If you already have an OSCommerce site and want to move to Magento, you would need to do a feature comparison for all your custom work + add-on modules and Magento. There is a Magento connect module that does the job of importing all the data but you might consider an expert help for a smooth transfer. You might consider this Magento extension for transferring data here
On a concluding note, drupal + Ubercart is suitable for any system that has either strong content management features required and there is a lot of custom development involved and Magento is good for anyone looking for a strong e-commerce solution. If you require a strong content management system as well as a strong e-commerce solution like Magento, Drupal + Magento integration might work great but this is something that is still in progress in the community. Hopefully, the community will have something on this in near future.