Over the past few months Inviqa have been working to build an official plugin to simplify the process of adding Cloudinary to the 100,000s of Magento sites around the world. Inviqa is one of Magento’s largest partners in Europe and has been working with customers to integrate Cloudinary and ensure that the plugin can cater to a Magento store’s needs.
At the forefront of the digital eCommerce revolution is Magento, which is the world’s largest eCommerce platform by numbers, and powers the stores of global brands from Nike and Gant to high fashion brands like Christian Louboutin and Paul Smith.
Images are the closest thing that an eCommerce store has to real sales people. It is images that encourage visitors to buy, images that allow visitors to connect with products, and most importantly make the transition from new visitors to customers.
The challenge for a typical Magento administrator is that managing images is hard work. If they make them too big, then the site slows down and creates a bad shopping experience. Make them too small and customers will struggle to see the products and are less likely to add them to their shopping basket.
There is a lot of work that goes into making images. They need to be uploaded, stored, versioned, integrated into Magento, made to work responsively, and then finally shown to the customers. Cloudinary’s focus for Magento is on reducing complexity and working to make image optimization and workflows easier, simpler… and automatic.
By installing the plugin via the Magento Connect store, the whole process of letting Cloudinary take control over the image features on Magento happens automatically.
This first release helps to solve the largest headache for Magento sites which is to make Magento perform faster. All web users enjoy fast websites and we have worked hard to provide Magento developers with a framework to add their own custom functionality.
- Automatic image optimization - Site visitors will receive the best possible image for their browser. For more info look at Cloudinary’s optimized delivery features.
- Automatic image uploading and migration - The whole Cloudinary setup is handled automatically once the Cloudinary API Key is entered.
- Faster performance - Website performance is increased by up to 40%.
- Smaller page weights - Magento websites benefit from a large reduction in page weights of up to 80% which reduces bandwidth bills to a fraction of their size.
We also implemented controls within Magento that allow:
- Global image quality changes – Magento administrators are able to change the quality of images across their entire website.
- One click to Cloudinary’s Media Library - Customers can choose to add videos, PDFs or conduct complex image related changes using the console. They can also copy and paste the resulting URLs straight into Magento without needing to call in the designers.
For those of you looking to try out the plugin, you can install it in a few minutes via the Magento Connect Store. Take a look at the source code on Cloudinary’s GitHub Repos. Cloudinary has a free plan which is a quick and easy way to try out the features.
We look forward to helping Magento merchants take some of the effort out of delivering quality images on their site. Most importantly as shoppers ourselves, we want Magento site visitors to enjoy a faster shopping experience and access amazing quality product images and videos when they choose to buy online from their favourite stores.
We have created a quick video demo that shows how to integrate Cloudinary into Magento in under 3 minutes thanks to the new module.
There are other features that we haven’t had time to fit into this blog post, so we encourage you to try it out for yourself and share any feedback with us. We are eager to keep developing and improving the plugin.
We also welcome GitHub comments, feature requests and pull requests, as we want to continue to make this the most versatile and powerful image and media plugin in the eCommerce market.
About the Author
Grant Kemp works for Inviqa and has collaborated with Cloudinary to bring their technology to Magento. When not at work, Grant blogs about retail innovation on Connectedwindow.com and builds apps on iOS and Android.