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Can Magento Handle Millions of Products?

Anyone considering building an online store will need to make sure the software they pick is future proofed. There’s no point choosing an eCommerce platform which has limits. If you think you will ever have a store with millions of products listed, then you’ll need to take an extensive search at the platform you are choosing.

Can it be done?

Magento is built using PHP code and stores its entire product catalog using a database. This means that technically it can store any amount of products without causing a fatal error to the store. The database can store millions of products, but it’s by no means a perfect solution.

Limitations of Listing One Million Products on Magento Community Edition

There are various problems experienced for listing so many products using the community edition of Magento, these include:

  • Slow indexing times
  • Slow search results
  • Site could slow down
  • Difficulty importing so many products

Most of the problems relate to the speed of the site, indexing and displaying products. This is because although the system can handle so many products, displaying and searching the products can take quite a long time.

Importing a million products will also be tough. This requires a lot of work, and will probably need to be broken down into batches.

Why Would Magento Enterprise Edition Be Better?

Besides the free Magento Community Edition, there’s also a premium enterprise edition. This costs around $15,000, so it’s by no means cheap. It is, however, better suited to large companies. It implements new improved search and indexing technology which will speed up cataloging and searching so many products.

Do You Really Need a Million Products?

A million products is an awful lot. Few stores would ever have as much items listed in their database. Before you spend lots of money on the enterprise edition, decide whether or not you need this functionality. Remember, it’s not just adding so many products; you will also need to maintain, adjust prices and track stock levels.

Conclusion

An eCommerce store with millions of products requires significant investment in all areas of the business. For this reason I wouldn’t recommend using the community edition for such a large store; however, the Enterprise edition won’t cause any problems. If you are planning to have such a large eCommerce store, then it shouldn’t be that difficult to justify buying the enterprise edition.