Monthly Archives: November 2010

  • New York Magento

    New York Magento Meetup Group Meeting for December

    This month we will be looking at Magento's architecture at the New York Magento Meetup.

    Looking under Magento's hood - Basic Magento Architecture

    Last time we looked at what can be done with Magento in terms of design and I believe we saw some surprisingly amazing implementations culminating in a not very secure implementation of the OnePageCheckout in Flash.

    This time we will give a general overview of Magento's architecture.
    Why is Magento so popular? Or how does Magento support so many features?
    You hear a lot about extensions or modules. What are they and how do they relate to the Magento system?

    We will also answer questions such as what is the difference between Magento Enterprise and Magento Community Edition? What is $12,990 going to get me?

    This presentation will be very helpful for anyone interested in understanding the fundamentals of Magento, how it works and how to think about the system from a systems perspective.

    We're looking forward to seeing you.

    The team at Hara Partners.

  • New York Magento Meetup for November 2010

    Hara Partners, host of New York's Magento Meet Up, has been running the New York chapter for the single purpose of Magento betterment.  On the November 10, 2010 meet up, Mai Erne & Jun Zhao focused on some of the obvious, and not so obvious design cues and bewares.

    new york magento meetup

    new york magento meetup


    Hara Partner's lead software architect, Jun Zhao, organized a friendly, open-ended meeting-of-the-minds, centered around feedback as there were experts from different fields in attendance.  Working with our fellow Magento community to help attack real world problems is a great perk at our sessions.  Please stay tuned for future NY Magento Meet Ups  as we are always open for topic and workshop suggestions.

    new york magento meetup

    Special thanks to Fashion Tower Studios and resident photographer, Vernon Fong for capturing our meet up!

  • The Connectors NYC hosted a wonderful networking event at Tom Colicchio's newest hot spot, Riverpark, located on a unique garden plaza overlooking the East River in Manhattan.
    Fusing music, film, fashion, art, theater and digital creatives, The Connectors is an invite-only community created by social entrepreneurs Dayna Ghiraldi and Ashleigh Snead with special guest host Daniel Oakley.
    Along with 2 of our actors/models (Toni Busker & Marianna Tumasova), we had an immense evening of fun and business at this beautiful waterfront establishment.  Hara Partners' Creative Director, Vernon Fong and VP of Business of Development, Mai Erne thanks Ashleigh & Dayna for a well-put, fun, and super-productive evening.  You girls RID-OCK!
    All photos were taken by Wet Paint,
  • We are hiring Magento developers or very talented people. Come work with us!• We build highly interactive web sites and we want you to join us in building Magento based e-commerce solutions.
    • We are passionate programmers who love to get into the 'zone' and look for the same in you.
    • We provide a great work environment and training to help you become the best programmer you can be.Score Yourself!1. Proficient in PHP (+1 for each 1000 lines of code written)
    2. Experienced with MySQL (+1)
    3. Experienced with HTML and CSS; and cross-browser testing (+1)
    4. Experience with Version Control (+1)
    5. Integrated with/Developed an API (+1)
    6. Comfortable with Linux and LAMP environment (+1)
    7. Familiar with at least one JS library (jQuery, Scriptaculous, etc.) (+2 each)
    8. Familiar with a MVC framework (+2)
    9. Any previous web development projects (+2 each)
    10. Maintain your own tech blog (+2)
    11. Developed automated tests for your code (+2)
    12. Familiar with PHP Zend framework (+4)
    13. Past experience with Magento (+4)Contact us if you score 15 or more.
    You can expect to work with peers with at least 30 or more points and you can expect to get there soon through our training too.

    If you like the following you will enjoy working with us:

    • Enjoy coding and be proud of your own code
    • Have good habit of documenting the code
    • Stay focused and get things done (Yes, we know how difficult it is to settle the mind in the ‘zone’ for productive coding)

    Come work with us!
    We build e-commerce stores and highly interactive web sites that seamlessly integrate e-commerce with social media, blogs, JavaScript, Flash and more.

    We respect and value programmers greatly and we want you to excel and bring your full creativity and skills to the table. We will train you and help you unleash your coding power. We will do as much as possible to shield you from interruptions and do almost anything to get you into the "zone".

    We also have a number of other job openings. Please check them out and apply.
    Write to us to apply with your score!
    HARA Partners
  • (Continued from E-Commerce Customer Expectations - Part 1)

    Continuing with the findings of the previous article where we found these two usability points that induce customers to buy or not:

    1. Clear communication of price and total cost
    2. An overall professional and trust-inducing look

    At the base of the second point is a clean and visually appealing look. I will not list any bad examples here as there are plenty of these and while they make me a little sad, I know you have seen them.

    However, "visually appealing" ranks behind a "credible and trustworthy" look and "products displayed on homepage", which we take to come from the overall user-interface and information flow.

    The e-commerce arena has become increasingly competitive in terms of technical requirements. While you could get away with a basic "cart" in the late 90's, nowadays even entry-level online stores are expected to provide the an extensive functionality list. This certainly is the main reason why Magento, the leading open-source platform enjoys so much popularity.

    What we gather from these findings is that the stakes have gone up significantly, and that looks and user experience have to be delivered at a high level and go hand in hand to maximize sales.

  • Our Client Macaron Cafe is publishing a new book called Macarons: Authentic French Cookie Recipes That You Can Make at Home featuring our e-commerce product photography. It is available now for pre-order. Check out our photography studio (Fashion Tower Studios) and contact us to discuss what we can do for your products to look awesome.

  • We are hosting another New York Magento Meetup

    Design Limitations with Magento

    We would like to discuss what design limitations of Magento are (or are there any?)

    For this purpose we will be looking at numerous stores that are out there and review different technologies used. This analysis will range from plain html and css over javascript to Flash.

    Please feel free to contribute your examples you would like to discuss by posting them here or bring them to the Meetup.

    We're looking forward to hosting you.



    November 10th, 2010 at 7 PM


    135 W 36th Street
    15th Floor
    New York, NY 10018

  • A recent e-commerce usability study hones in on the key purchase decision factors for consumers on e-commerce web site. The top five answers center around only two points:

    1. Clear communication of price and total cost
    2. An overall professional and trust-inducing look

    These findings should not come as a surprise. Online sales have become more competitive with more players entering the arena.

    The first point is relatively simple to excel in and provide a satisfactory customer experience. However, we still speak to many store owners coming from a brick and mortar background explaining that they cannot compete on price alone. And they express the desire to hide or obfuscate the total purchase price.

    Most of these stores dismiss their comparative advantages, such as superior personal customer service, or a greater selection with more options than their competitors. The challenge is to translate these benefits onto the web.

    We have also seen clients embrace the web and offer an online catalog, in addition to a print catalog, where they try to provide a product configuration tool with the aim for customers to ultimately call and place an order. This is the way to embrace the findings of this study and reach out to a greater audience. Yes, you will always have people come to your web site and look at the price and buy elsewhere, but you will also gain long-term customers who appreciate the extra customer service and positive experience you bring to the table and buy from you again and again.

    (Continued in E-Commerce Customer Expectations - Part 2)

  • Oracle Buys ATG


    The headline yesterday was Oracle Buys ATG.

    One of the biggest technology companies, Oracle, is following other industry heavy weights such as Google into the e-commerce arena by making a substantial investment with buying one of the leading e-commerce platform providers ATG.
    It's interesting to see how the e-commerce field will evolve after other big deals such as GSI's purchase of Rue La La and Rakuten and Baidu partnering up in the Chinese market.
    It remains to be seen how Magento's taking in a large investment earlier this year will play out.

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