You're saying it wrong: Magento Terminology You Need to Know

by Ryan Gellis

Ryan is the founding partner of Robofirm and is responsible for leading the company’s growth, strategy, and vision. His experience includes almost a decade of enterprise-level systems architecture, digital marketing, and eCommerce strategy for clients including Sally Beauty Holdings, Hearst Corporation, and Charming Charlie. When he’s not working, you can find him playing piano, guitar, or cheering for the Blackhawks.

As with other open source solutions, the more effort you put into Magento the more you’ll get out of it. Working with Magento, as an alternative to working with a proprietary ecommerce solution, will expose you and your team to a more detail-level view of platform functionality. By putting you in the driver’s seat of your ecommerce experience, you’ll be better positioned to develop a tailored-fit, high ROI solution for your business. But you’ll first need to be shown the ropes. The following list contains some key terms you need to know if your goal is to become literate in Magento. Before perusing this list, it will be helpful for you to first install Magento and then follow along on the Magento Dashboard.

You're saying it wrong: Magento Terminology You Need to Know


Magento Hierarchy – This term is used when referring to the various websites, stores, and store views at play within the Magento ecommerce platform. To help make the concept of the hierarchy more clear, let’s take a look at its component terms individually:

  • Website: The term “website,” within the context of Magento, is used to describe either one, or a group of online stores that may (or may not) collect, organize, and share data from a specific customer pool. For example, consider a website for a major retailer such as Wal-Mart. The Wal-Mart website will have a multitude of “stores,” one for electronics, one for hardware, one for outdoor and sporting equipment, etc., each represented by distinct URLs
  • Stores: The main purpose of having multiple stores under a single website is to categorize the goods or services being offered. If Johnny’s Clothing Website sells clothes for men, women, and children, then it would make sense for the website to host three separate stores, one for each category. Each store will be subject to its own traffic trends, its own marketing requirements, and each store will receive unique customer feedback.
  • Store View: “Store view” refers to various online displays of the same products. Usually store views are delineated according to language. Johnny’s Clothing Website may want to sell the merchandise in its men’s store to both English speaking and French speaking consumers, so it would create two store views of the men’s store.
  • Global: The term “Global” is used when referring to the entire ecommerce apparatus as a whole: the websites (some companies run multiple websites on one ecommerce platform), stores, and store views.
  • Themes: Themes refer to the look and feel of your ecommerce websites’ stores. Each theme offered in Magento contains a collection of skins and templates that will be used to create a visually appealing front-end layout.
You're saying it wrong: Magento Terminology You Need to Know

These terms represent but a small fraction of all there is to learn about Magento. Try to learn a few new terms and concepts each day that you use the platform, and before long you’ll find yourself with a powerful and profitable level of control and understanding over your Magento experience.

You're saying it wrong: Magento Terminology You Need to Know

You're saying it wrong: Magento Terminology You Need to Know

by Ryan Gellis

Ryan is the founding partner of Robofirm and is responsible for leading the company’s growth, strategy, and vision. His experience includes almost a decade of enterprise-level systems architecture, digital marketing, and eCommerce strategy for clients including Sally Beauty Holdings, Hearst Corporation, and Charming Charlie. When he’s not working, you can find him playing piano, guitar, or cheering for the Blackhawks.

As with other open source solutions, the more effort you put into Magento the more you’ll get out of it. Working with Magento, as an alternative to working with a proprietary ecommerce solution, will expose you and your team to a more detail-level view of platform functionality. By putting you in the driver’s seat of your ecommerce experience, you’ll be better positioned to develop a tailored-fit, high ROI solution for your business. But you’ll first need to be shown the ropes. The following list contains some key terms you need to know if your goal is to become literate in Magento. Before perusing this list, it will be helpful for you to first install Magento and then follow along on the Magento Dashboard.

You're saying it wrong: Magento Terminology You Need to Know


Magento Hierarchy – This term is used when referring to the various websites, stores, and store views at play within the Magento ecommerce platform. To help make the concept of the hierarchy more clear, let’s take a look at its component terms individually:

  • Website: The term “website,” within the context of Magento, is used to describe either one, or a group of online stores that may (or may not) collect, organize, and share data from a specific customer pool. For example, consider a website for a major retailer such as Wal-Mart. The Wal-Mart website will have a multitude of “stores,” one for electronics, one for hardware, one for outdoor and sporting equipment, etc., each represented by distinct URLs
  • Stores: The main purpose of having multiple stores under a single website is to categorize the goods or services being offered. If Johnny’s Clothing Website sells clothes for men, women, and children, then it would make sense for the website to host three separate stores, one for each category. Each store will be subject to its own traffic trends, its own marketing requirements, and each store will receive unique customer feedback.
  • Store View: “Store view” refers to various online displays of the same products. Usually store views are delineated according to language. Johnny’s Clothing Website may want to sell the merchandise in its men’s store to both English speaking and French speaking consumers, so it would create two store views of the men’s store.
  • Global: The term “Global” is used when referring to the entire ecommerce apparatus as a whole: the websites (some companies run multiple websites on one ecommerce platform), stores, and store views.
  • Themes: Themes refer to the look and feel of your ecommerce websites’ stores. Each theme offered in Magento contains a collection of skins and templates that will be used to create a visually appealing front-end layout.
You're saying it wrong: Magento Terminology You Need to Know

These terms represent but a small fraction of all there is to learn about Magento. Try to learn a few new terms and concepts each day that you use the platform, and before long you’ll find yourself with a powerful and profitable level of control and understanding over your Magento experience.