April 24, 2012, 3:25 PM

Magento moves further into mobile

The e-commerce technology provider launches HTML5-based features.

Lead Photo

Magento, a provider of open-source e-commerce technology and a unit of eBay Inc., today launched capabilities based on the HTML5 web programming language. The upgrades expand the ways retailers can interact with consumers through mobile commerce, including cross-selling features and improved product search, the company says.

The new compatibility with HTML5, which comes with Magento’s free Community edition e-commerce platform and its licensed Enterprise edition, is designed to help retailers drive up mobile commerce conversion rates and sales, says Roy Rubin, founder and general manager of Magento.

Ben Skigen, director of e-commerce at ToolKing.com, which operates on the Magento Enterprise platform and is No. 337 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide, says Magento’s use of HTML5 will help retailers create better mobile shopping experiences across multiple web browsers. “HTML5 compatibility will allow Magento store owners to offer high-quality dynamic shopping experiences that will work well on nearly every modern web browser, especially on the hundreds of millions of mobile devices that don't have support for Flash,” he says. Flash is the online imaging technology from Adobe Systems Inc., which isn’t supported on the iPhone, iPad and some other Apple Inc. devices.

Magento says the HTML5 version of Magento Mobile includes:

● Image scaling and device-specific video and audio capabilities;

● New “user-friendly” search and results display;

● Drag and drop of products into a shopping cart;

● Cross-sell and upsell options;

● Swiping between product images, and product image zooming;

● Support for iPhone, Android and Mobile Opera browsers.

Magento also announced other updates to its e-commerce technology platforms:

● The targeting of segments of shoppers on the Magento Enterprise edition with promotions based on known shopping behavior and demographics;

● Automatic generation of coupon codes based on business rules tied to customer shopping behavior, for both Enterprise and Community editions;

● The ability to let customers build multiple wish lists, for the Enterprise edition.

Magento announced its improvements at its second annual Imagine conference, which is being held in Las Vegas this week. In an interview yesterday, Rubin said Magento expects to announced more improvements and platform options as the company adds development partners. In the past year, the number of technology vendors working with Magento has grown by 71%, to almost 400, he said.

Technology partners announced this week include Avalara, whose AvaTax application integrates with Magento for calculating sales tax and other transactional data; e-Dialog Express, a unit of eBay’s GSI Commerce, for e-mail marketing technology; and Fanplayr, a provider of online coupons and games used in social networks.

At the Internet Retailer Conference and Exhibition 2012 in June, Aaron Mandelbaum, CEO of StyleQuest, will speak in a session entitled “SoMo Technologies: Powering up the social and mobile revolutions.

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