Recently, I helped an associate with a Wordpress shopping cart. They were running into problems because of how the developers had coded the plugin. On the front end it looked fine, but it was so oddly designed on the backend that they couldn't manage it.
Unfortunately, many site owners run into similar problems.
They choose an extension because they are impressed by the way that it looks, but once it is installed, the interface is so complicated that they find themselves unable to make it work for them. That’s not a big deal if you plan to have an outside development company manage your site. But for many businesses, that isn’t a reasonable option.
When developing or choosing a Joomla extension, its appearance is only half of the picture. The other half – and arguably the more important – is the end user.
Obviously, an extension is only beneficial to your business if it’s useful to the end user. If they can’t use your shopping cart, they’re not buying your products! If you can't manage it, someone else has to. It’s important that your Joomla developer understands this before they choose an existing extension or begin developing a custom extension.
Here are four questions to ask your developer:
While it’s tempting to get caught up in how the final product looks, the usefulness of an extension is determined by all the work that goes in behind the scenes. It needs to be well thought out from the beginning, which means workflow and functionality are just as well prepared as the design.
When implementing a Joomla extension, make sure that your developer makes the backend as clean as the frontend. When choosing an existing solution to implement, make sure that it's something that works well and just doesn't look good. Carefully considered design will dedicate just as much attention to the way an extension works as to how it looks.