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Interview Rebecca

She’s one of the youngest, most devoted and enthusiastic members of the Magento community.

If you enter the hashtag #Magento in the search bar on Twitter, you’ll find lots of informative tech articels, detailed Magento events round-ups, as well as fun posts and hilarious videos created by this lovely girl.

Ok, ladies and gentlemen, please welcome Rebecca Troth!

Vitaly: Rebecca, now you are working as a Project Manager at Interactive Web Solutions Ltd. What was your journey to get there?

Rebecca: I’ve always been a bit of a geek… ok a lot! But when left education at 19, I still didn’t really know what I wanted to do. I got an apprenticeship in ICT and started a job at an SEO & Marketing Company which is where I was first introduced to the world of designing, building and marketing websites. After realizing neither ICT hardware or SEO were for me, I joined a large printing company as a web designer. Followed by an eCommerce agency as a web developer in 2013, this is where I was first introduced to Magento and quickly learned to love this orange eCommerce platform.

After a few years developing, my path lead me to a role in project management at Interactive Web Solutions (iWeb) and here we are today! I love it here at iWeb, there are so many talented folk here and the atmosphere in the office is always fun and innovative!

Vitaly: Wow, that’s really cool!

Ok, in your opinion, how does Magento differ from other popular eCommerce platforms? What attracts you to it?

Rebecca: Compared to the other most popular eCommerce platforms, Magento has always stood out as a premium, high level player that has faultlessly braved the test of time. It is hard not to be drawn to Magento as there are so many benefits like there being different versions available to suit different merchants, it’s completely scalable, has loads of excellent features and is constantly growing!

Vitaly: I see. I believe you’ve already had Magento 2 projects. What do you personally think of the new version of the platform? What kind of feedback on M2 you are getting from your customers?

Rebecca: I am not sure how honest to be here. Yes, I have worked on a few Magento 2 projects and although I think its fab and is set to overtake its predecessor, I am not sure if it is completely production ready. I am yet to work on or demo a Magento 2 site where I don’t feel nervous about the speed, the checkout or other unknown bugs that might appear.

The feedback we have had from customers also compliments this in that, although they love the new admin look, the new functionality, and buzz around Magento 2, they have experienced many issues that come with the software being so new and still finding its feet.

There is always a teething time with new software, and Magento 1 went through the same process when it was first released. I think there is a lot of pressure to switch to 2 and think it’s the best thing since sliced bread, and although it may well be eventually – it’s not there yet.

Vitaly: Rebecca, I love your blog posts about the Magento history told through tweets

And what are your thoughts on the future of the platform? How do you see Magento in 1, 5, 10 years? In your opinion, will it be able to handle the modern eCommerce challenges.

magento-history-1

Rebecca: Wow that’s a big question! There are so many unknowns! Haha.

In 1 year I hope that Magento 2 will have settled and will be as stable and easy to use as Magento 1 so that the switch is painless and without worry.

5 years… I would expect to see more innovative marketing strategies being widely used so that we can expect an omnichannel experience from all of commerce. And finally in 10 years, a whole decade away! Magento isn’t even 10 years old itself yet and look how much it has advanced!

We could be seeing Magento 3 at that point, who even knows if we will still being using devices such as laptops and smartphones to access the web or if we will just put on our virtual reality headsets and enter the web the same way you would enter a shopping center.

Vitaly: What the biggest challenge Magento 2 is facing these days?  

Rebecca: We have to remember, Magento 2 is still a bit of a baby. Some battling with it at the minute would probably agree it’s going through its terrible 2’s.

From what I’ve seen its biggest issues seem to be:

  • Speed: if you have been to a Magento 2 site in production mode, added an item to your basket and then clicked “Checkout” chances are you will wait what feels like forever for the page to slowly populate
  • Set up: as Alan Storm put it earlier this year in his Open Letter to Magento: “Magento 2 is too hard, (bordering on impossible), for an average user to get started with.” Compared with how easy it is for anyone to download and install Magento 1, this could be a major setback for new developers looking to get into the community.

Vitaly: Rebecca, you’ve recently launched a new (and really cool) Magento YouTube channel. Tell us more about it. What led you to take on this, how are you planning to develop it in the future?

Rebecca: To be honest, I have no idea! 🙂

Magento is something I am super enthusiastic about and love being involved in but the videos I came across on YouTube didn’t really capture how exciting and inviting the community is and so that’s what I’m trying to get across! As for the future, you will have to wait and see 😉

Haha I don’t really have a plan! An idea will just pop into my head and I will just run with it. “Ooo I could do ****… And I already have a pirate costume! Perfect.”

 Vitaly: Your channel logo looks super cool! Is there any story behind it?

Screen Shot 2016-07-20 at 12.41.30 PM

Rebecca: I don’t think there is a story as such, stags are my all time favorite animals and have been since I was a little sprog. The inspiration for it came from where I live, we back onto a huge forest and Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty so they are always around along with loads of other wildlife so it’s wonderful for a stag and general animal lover like me!

Vitaly: Rebecca, as I’ve noticed, you are actively using Twitter. I believe this social network is the best place to hang out and engage with Magento folks.  Whom do you suggest to follow to learn more insights about Magento?

Rebecca: Yes it is definitely the place to be for us Magenfolk! Gosh who to follow, there are so many!

In fact, I started a twitter list a few months ago. Its not as up to date as I would like but it’s definitely a good start as everyone in here are Mage-junkies 😉

Vitaly: Have you ever considered setting up a new Magento group/ community page in other social networks. For example, Facebook, Instagram or LinkedIn?

Rebecca: I am a Manager of the Magento 2 group on LinkedIn (feel free to join it).

I did think about setting some up but there are already so many I thought it could get a little crowded! I do use all of the above social networks (I’m a #SocialJunkie) but I think I will stick to Twitter & Youtube for most of my random Magento ramblings!

Vitaly: Are you planning to be a speaker at some of the upcoming Magento events?

Rebecca: I would love to and will be trying to! I just need to find a fun and interesting topic and then an event organizer crazy enough to hand me control of the mic! Haha 😉

 

We thank Rebecca for the interview and wish her good luck in her career.

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