Updated Marketplace Extension Quality Program

Magento Updated Extension Quality Program

Today, on Magento Marketplace there is a wide range of M1 and M2 extensions. A lot of them are very popular among users from the USA, Germany, the UK and other countries. On one side, such variety gives Magento store owners more options to choose from. On the other,“too much water drowned the miller”. However, we have good news for you! Extension Quality Program, which has been introduced by Magento earlier this year, is updated! It means that amount of low-quality extensions will decrease. And in this article, we want to tell you how this program works and present all improvements made to it. But firstly, let's have a closer look at the problem of extension choice.

Magento Marketplace: How To Choose A Reliable Solution For Your Business?

Magento Extension Copycats Threat

The market is really overloaded by different free and paid solutions. Some of them are really great, but some leave much to be desired. So, clients often faced with problem of choice. They have to select between a dozen of variants, which often present the same functionality, but may be offered at different prices. As sometimes, a price is the main criteria while choosing, users forget about other important factors, for example: the amount and the quality of features, support and updates, installation cost and many others. After that, they suffer from low-quality solution.

Generally, there are just 2 reasons why two similar Magento extensions differ ONLY in cost:

  • The creators of extension invented and released the similar solution at the same time (not knowing about each other).
  • Or one of them is a copycat. 

Unfortunately, now most of all Magento development companies choose to steal ideas from other companies and present them as their own instead of investing into new large-scale projects. This way is great deal easier, cheaper and not so time consuming, but at the same time, it is dishonest. We can only imagine what the real extension creator feels in such situation. 

Magento Marketplace Program As A Real Solution Of The Problem

So, as you can see, not only users but also other Magento extension developers afflict with fraudful providers. The problem is that anyone, anywhere, can develop (or copy) Magento extension and place it on Magento Connect.To lower the amount of such copycats on the market, Magento experts created Extension Quality Program. They update and improve it regularly and according to users and developers needs.

This program checks whether all Marketplace extensions compliant with Magento standards or not. It includes business, technical, and marketing tests that all extensions must pass before be placed on Magento Connect. Speaking about a technical aspect, it should be mentioned that in order to ensure that an extension has a logical coding structure and corresponds to the Magento platform standards, it has been decided to apply Magento software development guidelines and examination tools.

What is new?

Last week, Magento Marketplace team informed about the new enhancements, which had been made to the Extension Quality Program. The updated program was supplemented by a new set of coding rules for both Magento 1.x and Magento 2.x extensions. These so called “sniffs” (rules) are placed at the Coding Standard directory on GitHub. Therefore, before submitting the extension to the Mandatory Check (Level 1 review), developer has to test the code against these coding standards.

If a submission does not pass the business, technical or marketing review, its creators receive the message with the explanation why the submission has not meet the standards. After that, they will know what they have to change or improve. A submission that passes Level 1 review will be placed on the Marketplace.

2 Levels of Extension Quality Program 

  • Level 1 is an automated business, technical and marketing review. It focuses on extension package structure, basic code standards, virus/malware and plagiarism. 
  • Level 2 is a deep technical check carried out by Magento engineers. During this review, the documentation quality, coding structure, performance, scalability, security, and compatibility are studied more closely. Extension that passes this level receives a special Top Quality Badge.

How To Choose A High-Quality And Reliable Magento Extension?

Marketplace extensions

Even despite the fact that each extension passes the tough check, it is important to know the main criteria we should pay attention first of all while choosing. Below, the most important of them are listed:

Magento Extensions: Basic Points You Need to Check

1. Try to find it on Magento marketplace. First of all, you have to make sure that the product is approved by the Magento creators. You can check it by going to Magento Connect and trying to find this extension there. If it is in the list, you can continue to study it.

2. Try out Magento extension on your own. All providers, usually, add to the description a list of the features, which sometimes mean the same things. And here only a user experience could help. Spend some time to study both frontend and backend of demo version. At that stage, you need to check the next: How is it running; Is it easy to configure or not; Frontend design; etc.

3. Check product “ChangeLog”. Not less important is to look at Change Log. It will help you see the full solution’s life-cycle. It will show whether the company continues to support and improve its product by updating its features, fixing bugs, etc. It is a crucial point, because the extension must meet today's customers needs and business standards.

4. Study users’ reviews. Also the important step is to browse user reviews of the company you are interested in. You can find the feedbacks directly on Magento Connect as well as on different social websites, such as: facebook, twitter, linkedin, youtube, etc. But, it is essential to remember that all providers’ extensions are not of the same quality. 

5. Consult with the Magento community “veterans”. The people who are in this industry for a long time and have a great experience in such issues, can help you to see the whole picture.

As we can see, Magento does not stop to maintaining the high standards for Magento Connect. Their professional team is updating and improving the Extension Quality Program, so Magento users can be sure that all Marketplace solutions compliant with Magento coding standards and best practices. We, in our turn, hope that this post will be useful for you, no matter who you are - Magento developer or website owner. If you have some additional questions regarding this topic, you can contact our Magento development team.

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