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May 5, 2017

Key insights from Magento Imagine 2017

In an industry as fast-paced as ours, ecommerce platforms and technologies are ever-evolving to improve functionality and user experience. At Space 48 we value training and events to ensure our people are at the cutting edge of these changes, such as the latest platform upgrade from Magento; Magento 2.

Magento Imagine is an annual conference which updates merchants, ecommerce agencies and technology partners on the latest news around the Magento platform. Attendees are often the first to know of the new features and updates which will enable them to ultimately drive a better customer experience. Running from 3-5 April 2017, the conference offered workshops, talks from inspirational speakers, and showcased over 100 exhibitors. Not to forget the legendary after-party and #PreImagine networking event which we were proud to sponsor.

Our Technical Director (Tony), Head of Development (Iain) and Head of Insight (Oliver) were the lucky members of Space 48 who made the trip to Las Vegas last month for Magento Imagine. We caught up with them to share their conference highlights:

Highlights from Tony Brown, Space 48 Technical Director

From a technical perspective, what was the most exciting announcement at Magento Imagine 2017?
The most interesting feature announcement for me was Magento Social. It looks like a very powerful feature that could get retailers listing products through Facebook with minimal effort. I’m looking forward to seeing how that has been implemented,what actual effort will be required to roll it out and what customisation / extendability is possible.

What was your favourite talk/part of the event?
I really enjoyed James Zetlen’s talk on UI Components, as he’s a great speaker and clearly passionate about the continual improvement of the platform. He had a difficult topic as this area’s complexity has been criticised in the past, but it was very interesting to hear the historic strategic decision making, and also the potential abstraction layer which will simplify basic usage. The Dev Exchange was also a great event that led to some really interesting collaboration.

On stage at Imagine, you were awarded a Magento Master award for your contributions to the Magento community. As the only person from the UK to be awarded, this was a pivotal moment for you and Space 48. How did it feel?
It was an honour to receive the award and be in the company of so many fantastic community contributors. Magento have made massive strides in increasing community engagement and facilitating contributions. A big thanks is due to Sherrie Rohde, Ben Marks, and Max Yekaterynenko and their teams for all their hard work!

Highlights from Oliver Lees, Space 48 Head of Insight

From a retailers perspective, what do you think was the most exciting announcement at Imagine?
The Magento Social facility was by far the most exciting for me. The paid social advertising space has changed considerably over the past 12-18 months, with more and more consumers willing to purchase from social activity in various ways and by having Magento tap into this. It could be huge for ecommerce retailers.

What was your favourite talk?
My favourite talk was the Improving Mobile Conversion: The 50% You’re Missing talk by Ben Marks from Magento & John Higby from PayPal. It was interesting to get some insight on ways for retailers to maximise their mobile conversion, whether it was through streamlining the checkout process, to the inclusion or exclusion of cross-sell / upsell widgets in the mobile user journey.

So for your first time in America, and one of the few times you’ve even got on a airplane, was the experience worthwhile?
I have to say it was one of the best experiences I’ve ever had! The event was amazing and great to be part of. The discussions I had with various people at the event were very productive. On another note, as an added bonus, I enjoyed numerous burgers and also completely overcame my fear of flying.

Highlights from Iain Hubbard, Space 48 Head of Development

From a technical perspective, what was the most exciting announcement at Magento Imagine 2017?
The Magento Security Scan tool. It’s good to see Magento continuing its commitment to keeping the Magento platform secure with an official security scanning tool that builds on the excellent work already underway in the wider community.

What was your favourite talk/part of the event?
I really enjoyed the Dev Exchange. It was an amazing opportunity to speak with the people that drive the technical direction of the Magento core platform.

We’re not sure if it can top this year’s event, but we’re already looking forward to Magento Imagine 2018 – our second favourite event in the Magento calendar, after Mage Titans of course!

Space 48 is a UK-based ecommerce consultancy, comprising of Magento specialists and Magento 2 developers. If you want to learn more about Magento 2’s key features and functionality and discover why the platform could be right for your ecommerce business, download our free resource: Essentials of Magento 2.

Download the Essentials of Magento 2 guide