Over the last 10 years, eCommerce has grown more than three times as fast as retail as a whole. More and more experts declare that eСommerce is the future. According to Oberlo, it’s estimated that there will be 2.05 billion global digital buyers in 2020 and eCommerce is expected to make up a whopping 17.5 percent of retail sales worldwide by 2021. So eСommerce may be going to replace lots of traditional ways of doing business.
Since the fast development of this business is closely connected with the development of the IT industry, new trends and opportunities appear and change rapidly. Therefore, if you want to succeed, you need to catch up with the ever-changing trends and improve your website on a regular basis.
In January 2020, one of the top eCommerce platforms Magento has released the major upgrades of its next version, which is Magento Open Source 2.3.4. This update covers over 220 functional fixes to the core product and over 30 security enhancements.
Magento helps merchants create a stable and fruitful business, engaging customer experiences that exceed expectations. And all of this, in turn, makes customers return and drive sustained growth.
So, let’s plunge into the newest features of Magento 2.3.4, having a closer look at what new features and performance improvements are available.
Table of Contents
Significant Security Enhancements
Let’s start with the security changes. More than thirty security improvements contribute to the elimination of cross-site scripting and remote code execution vulnerabilities. There weren’t any confirmed hackers attacks connected to these issues. Nevertheless, there were detected several vulnerabilities that can be exploited with a view to access administrative control or customer information. Since the majority of these problems require access to the Admin Panel, Magento advises protecting your Admin by taking such required actions as IP whitelisting, VPN, two-factor authentication, applying unique location instead of admin and creating strong passwords.
Besides, Magento has presented some extra security enhancements and fixes to the core code. To eliminate the possibility for Remote Code Execution, custom layout updates, and the deprecation of layout updates were removed. Content template features were also redesigned in order to add only whitelisted variables to the templates.
Needless to say, changes in the security policy is an inalienable part of the development and improvement of any platform. New Magento enhancements will help you defend your business from unwelcome hackers attacks and protect your data.
What are the Main Platform Upgrades?
For the enhancing of PCI compliance and website security, the next updates were made.
The message queue framework is amended by supporting the latest release of the 3rd-party technology RabbitMQ v3.8.
MariaDB 10.2 support is improved. This update has fixed the previous error, and now it is possible to use declarative schema both with MariaDB and MySQL.
The enhanced capabilities of page caching and session storage were checked on the newest stable release of Redis v5.0.6.
These upgrades expand the functionality of Magento, providing for you new opportunities in the development of your business.
There also have been PHTML files refactoring to support parsing by the bundling mechanism.
Magento 2.3.4 has boosted performance.
Refactoring of banner cache algorithms and customer section invalidation mechanism has allowed eliminating unnecessary non-cached requests to the server on catalog pages.
Now the ability to disable statistic collecting for reports by default is available. With new settings of configuration, you can turn off (partially or completely) Magento Reports.
These upgrades speed up and simplify the work, allowing you to enjoy the working process.
In this update, the developers enhanced 250 core quality fixes, which contribute to the improvement of the Framework, sales, Elasticsearch, PayPal, CMS, import, and catalog.
Merchant Tool Improvements
The number of merchants who produce their own media assets is low, and the majority use stock imagery. But having no native access to image discovery, it’s a long and ineffective process to upload the assets by hand. It takes way too much time and effort.
This new extension will become a good helper for eCommerce store owners. Maybe even for you. Magento has integrated with Adobe Stock image galleries. Thanks to it, you can add images, photos, videos, and other media assets in high quality to your website, having no need to leave the Admin. Also, you can preview, explore, license, and deploy stock images in the website content.
Improvements in Inventory Management
This release includes the following enhancements. A known issue with the performance in scenarios involving the shopping cart has been addressed. Now the loads on the database server are normalized.
With a view to decrease the usage of memory while searching and compensating for missing reservations on wide catalogs, Inventory Reservations CLI command has been updated.
Grouped products, credit memo, source, and stock mass action issues and many other quality issues are resolved.
Magento 2.3.4 update has now greater GraphQL coverage for layered navigation, search and cart functionality with the following features available.
Now, purchasers can merge their guest carts with customer carts by transferring the guest cart contents into the cart of a logged-in customer. Simple as that.
This update allows customers to start making up their orders on one device and after some time finish them on another, which becomes more convenient for the customers.
Purchasers can see the information about applied discounts and promotions in their carts.
Custom filters can be used in layered navigation.
Added the search of categories by name, ID, and URL key.
Progressive Web App Studio Modifications
Nowadays, the number of headless storefronts being built using PWA Studio is increasing rapidly. They are very convenient, as you can make lightning-fast changes to your storefronts without affecting any backend processes.
With this release specifically, the React Router will handle routing.
Venia state management has been refactored, leading to the reduction of dependency on Redux.
Appeared the possibility for developers to swap out either the logic or the presentation side of a component, due to the division between the logic and presentation pieces of certain React hooks in Peregrine.
Improvements in Dotdigital
Another useful feature is live chat powered by dotdigital, which contributes to the enhancement of conversion rates. This allows customers to get in touch with brands with real-time engagement, which removes all the barriers for selling and delivering exclusive customer service. Chat administrations can quickly and effectively manage multiple conversations with purchasers, sending and receiving files, such as receipts, tickets, product images or demo videos, or marketing collateral, such as eBooks and whitepapers. Moreover, if a customer’s favorite product is out-of-stock, chat suggests to a customer a different one and recommend products complementary to a previous purchase.
By integrating this chat into your eCommerce website, you’ll get a head start to generating more revenue. And if you are a Magento 2.3.x merchant, you can get a free live chat agent, not buying a full dotdigital Engagement Cloud license. It seems like a good deal, doesn’t it?
As was mentioned above, this Magento update has fixed lots of previous errors, here we have several examples.
- Magento has eliminated plenty of core code issues in the latest version.
- Errors in installation, upgrade, and deployment have been fixed.
- In previous versions, emails, sending from the Admin had inaccurate static file paths. Now Magento sets the correct Admin locale scope when creating email templates.
- The price and subtotal now are displayed in another way. Earlier, when a customer added a second product to the card, the price displayed in the cart was doubled. Now it is based on the number of items and tier price as expected.
- The performance of edit and save operations on configurable products has been improved.
- Now quick search handles search phrases containing fewer characters than the configured value. In previous versions, a quick search disregarded the search phrase when search string length was lower than configured.
- Coupon codes for free shipping are displayed like other coupon codes. Previously, coupon codes for free shipping were not displayed on the order summary of the checkout workflow.
- When an invoice is created, Magento automatically sends an email to a customer. Earlier, even when the relevant configuration setting was enabled, Magento couldn’t send this email.
- The performance of sales order update operations has improved.
- Images are now retrieved from the proper cache in multi-store deployments.
As a result, we have a great eCommerce platform with a wide field for experimentation and creating your dream web store. Magento Open Source 2.3.4 offers significant platform upgrades, substantial security changes, and PSD2-compliant core payment methods. The functionality of the latest version has become more convenient. And since plenty of errors have been fixed, the web stores settle down on Magento to get more opportunities to run properly, and focus on the expansion of the customer base.
If you download Magento 2.3.4 or upgrade the functionality of your Magento 2-based business, it will allow you to improve and take your website to another level, while security enhancements provide you with reliable protection.
Furthermore, this update also has many improvements for the customers, which is extremely important. By creating a more pleasant web store, developing the interface, and inventing new features you attract new customers, having, as a result, an increase in your conversion rate and traffic. And it results in happy customers and your business growing.