November 03, 2022
 What is Magento Commerce Cloud and how has this Adobe ecommerce platform evolved

Since Magento was acquired by Adobe in 2018, Magento Commerce Cloud has been gaining popularity as a robust cloud-based enterprise hosting solution. Combining the power of Adobe Commerce with the high performance and reliability of cloud hosting, Magento Commerce Cloud is a perfect solution for large mission-critical ecommerce websites.

In this comprehensive guide to Magento Commerce Cloud, you will learn how Adobe turned Magento into a full-fledged ecommerce platform as a service (PaaS) solution and why cloud hosting architecture might be the best choice for your online business.

What is Magento Commerce Cloud?

Magento Commerce Cloud is a PaaS ecommerce solution that combines the extensive ecommerce capabilities of Magento with the high reliability of cloud hosting. Magento Commerce Cloud uses cloud infrastructure of AWS and Microsoft Azure, offering a high-performance managed Magento cloud hosting solution for enterprise-level ecommerce businesses.

The PaaS platform is fully optimized for building and hosting large online stores and marketplaces powered by Magento. Magento Commerce Cloud offers a number of advanced development and ecommerce solutions not available to Magento Open Source users.

Background on Magento’s acquisition

Magento was first introduced to the world in 2008. As the open source ecommerce platform gained more popularity and active users, it became clear that Magento had a brilliant future. In 2018, Adobe revealed their plans to acquire Magento Commerce to continue supporting the rapid growth of the ecommerce content management system.

With the acquisition of Magento, Adobe added another excellent solution to their portfolio, which allowed them to offer a robust enterprise-grade ecommerce platform serving both B2C and B2B clients across the world. As part of their technology suite, Adobe offers Magento Open Source, Adobe Commerce, and Adobe Commerce Cloud, also known as Magento Commerce Cloud.

Before Adobe took control over the ecommerce platform, what is now introduced as Adobe Commerce was known as Magento Community Edition. Adobe Commerce fully replaced Magento Enterprise Edition in a similar way.

What’s been going on with Magento the past few years?

As an ecommerce platform, Magento has undergone many changes over the years. Each new release contains a wide range of new features, performance enhancements, and security vulnerabilities patched. Adobe is constantly improving the platform to offer new ecommerce and content management features.

When Adobe introduced Magento Commerce 2.3, the world was finally able to see a drag and drop content management solution added to the built-in platform’s functionality. Magento Open Source users were able to leverage the new Page Builder functionality only three years later when Adobe finally included it in Magento 2.4.3 and later versions.

Magento 1 and Magento 2

In 2015, Magento 2 was released, which fully replaced Magento 1 five years later. 2020 was especially prominent for the Magento community as Magento 1 reached its end of life. Although Magento 2 can be considered a successor to Magento 1, the two platforms are totally different, which made migration from one platform to the other a rather complicated process.

Magento 1 users are encouraged to migrate to Magento 2 to leverage new ecommerce functionality and receive updates. For those who wish to continue using Magento 1, Nexcess Safe Harbor offers advanced security and vulnerability patching to keep your customers safe.

Adobe Commerce vs. Magento

After Adobe acquired Magento in 2019, it was announced that the ecommerce platform would continue growing in two directions: Adobe Commerce and Magento Open Source. Magento Community Edition was renamed to Magento Open Source to honor Adobe's decision to keep the platform available to store owners free of charge. But at the same time, Adobe Commerce made it possible for other ecommerce businesses to leverage premium features and tools to make running an online store more convenient.

Open source edition vs. Magento Commerce vs. Magento Commerce Cloud

Magento 2 open source edition

Magento has always been an open source platform for website building, which means that the core functionality it offers is free, and you do not have to pay a subscription fee to keep using it. Magento Open Source is the free version of the Magento 2 ecommerce platform that offers an extensive list of features that will help you build and operate an online store or marketplace.

Adobe Commerce

The Magento Open Source edition delivers all the basic ecommerce capabilities that will allow you to build an online store and receive first orders. Adobe Commerce largely extends the native capabilities of Magento Open Source. As an enterprise ecommerce platform, it combines powerful out-of-the-box functionality, almost limitless scalability, and robust business tools.

Some of the features that Adobe Commerce offers include business-to-business functionality, advanced marketing tools, business intelligence dashboards, visual merchandising, and customer segmentation that we will cover in more detail in the next section of this article.

Adobe Commerce Cloud edition

Adobe Commerce Cloud, also known as Magento Commerce Cloud, is the official managed hosting solution offered by Adobe that combines the power of Magento Commerce with high reliability of cloud hosting architecture. Magento Commerce Cloud is a fully featured ecommerce solution with cloud-based Adobe Commerce software and AI-powered merchandising and analytics.

Magento Cloud features

Magento Commerce Cloud offers advanced features to extend native capabilities of the Magento ecommerce platform for Adobe Commerce cloud hosting solutions.

Administrative suite

Magento Commerce Cloud solutions offer many more features than the open-source version of Magento and Magento 2 hosting solutions. Some of the additional features offered with the Adobe Commerce cloud infrastructure include:

  • Integrated business-to-business functionality. The B2B module helps support the B2B model by offering features such as company accounts, shared catalogs, quick orders, negotiations quotes, and requisition lists.
  • Content staging. Content staging allows you to easily create, preview, and schedule content updates for your store from the Magento Admin interface.
  • Business intelligence. Adobe Commerce offers advanced tools for store monitoring, with dashboards displaying a wide range of statistics from the average order value to customer lifetime value and retention rates.
  • Customer segmentation. Customer segmentation supported by Adobe Commerce allows you to create a more personalized shopping experience by dynamically displaying content and promotions to specific customers.
  • Visual merchandising. Visual merchandising offers fast product reorganization.

Ece-tool package

The ece-tools package offered by Adobe is a set of tools and scripts designed to manage and deploy Magento 2 on the cloud infrastructure. The main goal of ece-tools is having most Magento Commerce Cloud infrastructure processes simplified. It includes deploying to a Docker environment, managing cron jobs, applying security patches released by Adobe, among others.

Magento hosted on the cloud

Magento Commerce Cloud is the official cloud based hosting solution for Adobe Commerce. Powered by AWS and Microsoft Azure as cloud infrastructure providers, Magento Commerce Cloud is an excellent PaaS solution for large online mission-critical stores and marketplaces.

The Adobe Commerce cloud infrastructure is capable of scaling to meet the resource requirements of your ecommerce business to achieve greater performance and efficiency. By employing advanced monitoring tools like New Relic, Magento Commerce Cloud eliminates downtime and latency to maintain steady, predictable performance.

Magento Commerce Cloud architecture

As a managed ecommerce Magento cloud platform, Magento Commerce Cloud provides excellent solutions for building, testing, and managing an online store. Adobe describes its commerce cloud solution as a fully-optimized hosting platform for the Adobe Commerce software. Here are the key features of Magento Commerce Cloud infrastructure:

  • Technology stack. The technology stack in use includes NGINX and PHP-FPM, MySQL/MariaDB, Redis, Elasticsearch and Opensearch as the supported search engines, and RabbitMQ.
  • Development and deployment. Employs Git-based workflows with automatic build and code deployment.
  • Environments. The Adobe Commerce cloud infrastructure offers a Git repository with three  main environment branches for production, staging, and integration.
ProductionThe production environment uses code from the master branch to configure the web server, database, and additional services.
StagingThe staging environment has the infrastructure configuration matching the production environment. The staging branch is used to deploy code to test any modifications to the store, including modules and extensions, payment gateways, and more.
IntegrationIntegration environments are designed for testing and development before pushing changes to staging and production.

Magento Commerce Cloud security and performance

Along with the cloud architecture, high performance and security are ensured by using a content delivery network, web application firewall, and image optimization tools. Fastly CDN provides HTTP caching and protection against denial of service attacks. A WAF ensures PCI compliance for all online stores hosted on the Adobe Commerce cloud, and protects against known attacks and security vulnerabilities.

Magento Commerce Cloud comparison

Adobe Commerce cloud offers two main Magento cloud hosting plans — Starter and Pro. As the name of the plan suggests, the Starter plan includes the basic functionality, while the Pro plan offers advanced solutions for higher redundancy, backup management, disaster recovery, and more.

Starter Magento Commerce Cloud plan vs. Magento Commerce Cloud Pro plan

The Starter Magento Commerce Cloud plan includes all core features of the Adobe Commerce cloud architecture, and includes four environments. A single Git repository is created with a master branch for the production environment. One staging and up to two integration environments are set up for testing and development.

The Magento Commerce Cloud Pro plan includes the project Git repository with a Global Master and three main environments: a production environment for maintaining your live site, a staging environment for testing in the environment identical to the production, and the integration environment for development and initial testing.

Magento Commerce Cloud Pro plan git repo

The Magento Commerce Cloud Starter and Pro plans look very similar as they share a common cloud infrastructure architecture. However, there are certain differences between the two, and we have gathered some of them below.

Main differencesStarter PlanPro Plan
Business intelligence toolsBusiness Intelligence Essentials includedBusiness Intelligence Pro included
B2B moduleNot includedIncluded
Backups and data recoveryNo automatic backups are included. However, you can create a snapshot of your project manually. It will include your deployed code, software and services, and all other data.The snapshot feature is not supported on the Pro plan for the main environments. The Pro staging and production environments receive automatic backups for disaster recovery purposes. You can create snapshots of your Pro integration environments.

Strengths of Magento as an ecommerce platform

Powering more than two hundred thousand websites worldwide, Magento maintains its place among the top ten most popular ecommerce platforms. When it comes to building and managing online stores and marketplaces of any size and complexity, the Magento ecommerce platform is of prime consideration.

It’s SEO-friendly

The benefits of Magento go well beyond its high customization capabilities that make it a robust ecommerce platform. Magento is extremely SEO friendly, which is ensured by two main factors — its speed and a number of advanced SEO optimizations included. Magento CMS features include enhanced URL structure, sitemaps, meta descriptions and tags, and product rank on all major search engines, including Google.

Fast loading

Thanks to numerous updates released with each new Magento version, any delays in bringing content to the end user have been almost eliminated. Magento ensures fast query processing by using Elasticsearch as its main search engine. Elasticsearch largely outperforms MySQL/MariaDB on ecommerce websites, providing blazing-fast speed and impeccable relevance of search results.

Excellent platform with various features

Magento was designed to serve the requirements of ecommerce. This includes building and managing product catalogs, processing orders, and storing customer information, among many other features. With unrivaled performance, effective SEO, and an extensive list of content-optimized themes and extensions, Magento is a perfect solution for both content management and ecommerce tasks.

You can fully customize your website

Magento is known as an open source ecommerce platform that allows for almost infinite customization. Using various extensions and custom modules, you can create a truly unique storefront and integrate various services, including payment gateways and analytics tools. However, the power of Magento is paired with its complexity, as you would often need to hire a developer or even a whole team to bring your ideas to life.

Bottom line

Powering hundreds of thousands online stores in the global network, Magento remains one of the most powerful ecommerce platforms in the world. Magento is open source, so aspiring store owners can download it free of charge and start building their online presence. Adobe Commerce edition can dramatically improve the customer experience in several ways, and many store owners give preference to it to grow their online business.

Magento Commerce Cloud is Adobe's way to combine cutting edge technology with the power of cloud computing. Adobe Commerce Cloud can be a perfect solution for large mission-critical ecommerce websites that require zero downtime deployments and a large amount of hosting resources to run.

Nexcess combines the power of Magento and the reliability of hosting in the cloud to provide high-quality hosting for all Magento stores, regardless of their size and complexity. An enterprise-level technology stack, advanced security, and high scalability with a CDN included ensure lighting fast speed and impeccable performance.

Scale with ease as your online business grows and attracts new customers. Check out Nexcess managed Magento cloud hosting plans to leverage premium solutions built-in and the best support in the industry.

This article was originally published in December 2021. It has since been updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.

Kiki Sheldon
Kiki Sheldon

Kiki works as a Security Specialist for Liquid Web. Before joining the Abuse & Security Operations Department, she worked on the Liquid Web Managed Hosting Support Team, where she gained extensive knowledge of Linux System Administration and popular Content Management Systems (CMSs).

Kiki’s passion for writing allows her to share her professional expertise and help others. She keeps up with technology and always looks to improve her technical skills. In her free time, she enjoys reading, especially classic books and detective stories.

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