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Ecommerce is one of the most exciting platforms which is growing at an unbelievable rate. People across all geographical regions and age groups are getting accustomed to e-commerce sites. Online shopping provides more choices to the consumer within a short span of time and at the convenience of home.

Also, the wide ranges of e-commerce sites help to find out the perfect product as per customers’ needs. Online shopping is growing at an exponential rate and this makes the owner of the e-commerce sites crazy. With the increasing penetration of mobiles, e-commerce is expected to grow at never seen before rate.

The ever-improving e-commerce business provides a major boost for the world economy as well. There is a continuous change in the working model of e-commerce sites which essentially raised the demand for dynamic and responsive websites. Any successful e-commerce business needs a great website as the entire transaction happens based on it.

A good e-commerce site has to have a personalization feature with the enhanced ability to interact. Maintaining a large organized database is one of the important features of any successful e-commerce site.

For these required sets of features, PHP is the right tool as it is having the feature of responsive design and having the provision of maintenance of the unique and big databases.

For a successful and responsive e-commerce site, more and more people are trusting PHP as the chosen platform. PHP supports the feature of database maintenance and creation of storefront.

In PHP you can categorize the data which helps the customer to search for any products or services easily. The storefront can easily be created using HTML and CSS. Also in PHP, there is a provision of integration of multiple payment gateways which is one of the intrinsic features of any e-commerce sites.

Expert PHP Developer

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PHP hypertext preprocessor is basically an HTML enhanced scripting language which augments static pages with enhanced functionality and provides an on-demand response. This unique feature of generating an on-demand response makes it an ideal application for e-commerce sites.

It is basically a server-side programming language which also facilitates the development of various CMS platforms, Magento is one of the most uniquely built and highly capable e-commerce platforms based on PHP. PHP is also very useful in maintaining the database, dynamic content, tracking of the user session and helps to build effective e-commerce sites.

It is one of the most popular scripting languages which is used for web development. Some of the most popular websites such as Facebook and Wikipedia use PHP. As per the recent study, more than 20 million websites use PHP.

Recent trends are suggesting that there is a huge demand for PHP developers owing to their increasing participation in e-commerce site developments. You can learn the basic skills of PHP development to land into the world of PHP developer but it is the use of some enhanced features and unique skill sets which helps to make you the expert PHP developer.

Here we are going to discuss 6 major areas in which you need to focus in case you want to become an expert PHP developer:

1. Use of Core PHP Functions

PHP developers have the unique advantage of using core PHP functions. PHP function essentially helps to make your life easier in terms of understanding the logic.

As a PHP developer in case you are coding something which is very common, there is a chance that there is already a predefined PHP function. The PHP manual is having a range of functions that you can use while coding. This list of core PHP functions is one of the most effective tools used by any successful PHP developer.

One of the basic advantages of using a PHP function is that it can be used multiple times. There are more than a thousand types of built-in PHP functions that you can use during programming. It also helps to reduce the number of codes as you don’t have to write the same logic every time. PHP function enables you to use the same logic multiple times. This helps to save your development time and helps you achieve better productivity.

2. Creation of Master Configuration File

PHP has got a unique characteristic where you have the provision of creating one master file with multiple database connections. So in place of having database connections spread across the entire coding, you can create one master file with multiple database settings attached to it. This helps to incorporate any change easily as you need to make changes only in the master file which subsequently got reflected in the desired code. In case you need to use the same functions across multiple scripts these features become very useful.

Creating configuration helps to make the program more compatible and maintain it more efficiently. Also maintaining the master file helps to save time in coding and quick delivery of the desired module.

3. Keeping Error Reporting on During Development

PHP has got a unique configuration that helps to hide any runtime error which may result in a completely blank browser page at the end of the development phase. This is done to avoid the display of error to the customer. Since this kind of blank output doesn’t show any particular error it is very difficult to ascertain the error and rectification of the same. So if you want to become an expert PHP developer keep your error reporting and display error reporting on while coding. This, in turn, helps you to identify any runtime error and its origin.

The decision to turn on the error reporting will help you quickly identify the error and rectification of the error at the same time.

Configuring the error message should be done using the following thumb rules:

  • On a developer’s PC-In this case the error message should be visible along with the full details. This will help you to understand the errors and effective rectification of the same while coding.
  • On a live website-In this case the error message should not be visible to the site user as it may confuse a normal user. Also, it may be harmful in case it got exposed to hackers. As the hacker may use the same information to hack the site and access the invaluable databases of your website.

PHP may give you multiple error messages which are very difficult to track but some of them may contain memory-related issues that you can resolve easily. Once the building of the application is complete you can turn off the error reporting and display error reporting. This error reporting and display error reporting can be turned on or off from the server’s php.ini file.

4. An Optimum Level of Documentation of the Code

While doing the programming, sometimes you really feel the need to put up some comments for better understanding. You feel the need of putting up the comment more whenever you are performing complex programming. For all such cases putting up a small comment will help you to understand the code better in the future.

But over commenting and commenting against each line of the script will complicate the things too much. Also, it will make the documentation too long and difficult to keep track of. So, avoid commenting and comment only on the complicated part of the scripts for future reference. Documentation of the code is a very useful practice and you can achieve the optimum level of documentation by commenting on the selective complicated lines. Whenever you visit the script for modification, the previous comments will help you to recollect the whole code.

But it is mostly suggested to write the code properly rather than putting up comments against it for better understanding. If your code is having complex loops and structures it is better to change the same into a simple one rather one putting up a comment against it. A simple code with fewer comments will reduce the number of coding lines and makes the program more efficient.

Expert PHP Developer

5. Maintaining a Code Snippet

There is a possibility that you need the same codes throughout your entire course of PHP development. Maintaining a code snippet is a really useful tool that will help to save your time across the entire course of PHP development. Nowadays several apps are available which can keep your code snippets. You can easily avail of your code snippets from this application which also helps in the process of synchronization.

Snippely and Snipplr are some of the most widely used applications for keeping your code snippets.

Some of the popular integrated development environments have also got the built-in feature of storing the frequently used code snippets. As for example, you can avail of Eclipse which has got the unique feature of storing code templates or you can use Dreamweaver which has got the exclusive feature of storing programming code snippets.

You can use Dropbox as well where you can store the code snippets containing PHP scripts. This will essentially help you to access the code files anytime and use it in the desired coding applications.

6. Use a Good Source Editor to Save You Time

The source code editor is the most frequently used tool of PHP programming. A good source code editor will save a lot of your time. It can help you to highlight syntax which is one of the most effective features. Code hinting, as well as code navigation features, can also be availed through an effective source editor. The source editor also helps to identify the error and debug the same. A good source editor helps to save a huge amount of time by their effective features.

You should go through the documentation and online tutorial of the source editor to effectively understand all of its features. Investing your time in understanding the features will help you in the future in terms of less time for coding and smooth workflow and work ethic.

You can also use a PHP framework for better productivity as a developer. At the initial level of your programming career, you need to learn the basic stuff but as you progress more in your career as a PHP developer you need to read a lot to understand how the application program interface(API) of the PHP framework works. The framework ensures a better web development process which in turn helps to improve productivity.

Along with the above-mentioned skill sets, connecting with other fellow PHP developers is a good idea. You may have all the necessary skills to excel as a PHP developer, but there are several others who may have a better skill set than you in their particular field. It is always suggested to join a PHP community and exchange ideas. By mere interaction with other developers, you can learn many new things.

In case you want to have a successful and long-serving career as a PHP developer, the skill sets discussed above are essential and need to be followed ardently. As a young professional you can start developing the site using PHP, but at the same time you should keep on acquiring new skill sets and tools which help you to excel further as a PHP developer. So right now if you’re doing freelancing and want to excel as a full-time PHP developer, then the above suggestions may help you to achieve success as a web developer.

Learning and excelling in PHP programming may open countless options for you. But it is the special skill set which helps you to stand apart and makes you an expert PHP developer. The points discussed in this article are not exhaustive and there are many factors that need to be taken care of in case you want to become an expert PHP developer.

Conclusion

In this article, we have discussed how PHP has become the most trusted language for website development and how to become the most effective and efficient PHP developer.

Since PHP is a free and open-source language with dynamic features more and more people are using PHP for building their e-commerce sites. Because of this reason, the majority of the companies are looking for expert PHP developers. Becoming an expert in PHP development will help you to land on a better job and you can also help your employer to achieve profitability.

Written By
Rose Finch is a senior editor at TopFirms. She loves to write and research technology innovations. Rose is a badminton champion at National Level.

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