Magento allows for a great deal of customization in how you interact with your customers. At its most simple, you can run a single store on your Magento website, as a single language and brand. You install Magento once, setup your listings and link them in Linnworks, and Linnworks returns the appropriate information about Available Stock Levels and Shipping details. You can also run multiple websites, each on its own server or web space, each handling a single store and language.
Each store has separate inventory, customer and order records, and is integrated as a separate Channel in Linnworks. But you only pay for one lot of hosting, though you’ll be paying for several different web addresses to lead to the separate stores.
You may have a Magento install on your web space, for example, and want to run 2 specialist CD stores… One for Country Music, one for Classical. If you use Multi Store, then you would populate the 2 stores with only the listings for that category of CD, their own category structure to reflect the target user group, and integrate them separately. The category structure for each site is simpler, not having to account for the additional layer or layers to differentiate the two genres.
Linnworks, however, will have all the CDs for both sites in its inventory database, and will update the appropriate stock levels as orders are placed. The orders will come in from each site, and may have similar Channel order numbers (Order Reference), but will be differentiated in Linnworks by the Channel they originated on.
This Magento feature allows you to explore additional options in your interaction with your customers. You can use Multi Store to target sub-sections of your inventory at specific markets with simplified navigation, and separate order records by Source and Subsource within Linnworks. After exploring the potential of this option with your developer or solution partner, there’s nothing to stop you moving on from the lessons learned to additional full Magento sites to cope with the increased traffic you’ll hopefully experience!