Before I start I would like to express that I am a complete newbie when it comes to ecommerce platforms. I have only a little experience using some basic admin functions at work running OS commerce, and thatís about it.

So, here is my situation. I am looking to start up my own ecommerce site. It will be a wholesale electronic s drop-shipping company operating out of China. I am trying to figure out what platform will best suit my needs. I will start this company small and eventually hire 10+ employees in about a year or so.

I am looking for a free or relatively inexpensive open source platform that is more or less a complete integrated package. It needs to be very SEO friendly, easy for a newbie to use, and proven rock solid and secure.
I was looking at Magento, but it seems a bit complicated, and the manual is not much help. I am also looking at Prestashop. I guess I would like to know first if Magento is worth learning for a newbie like myself.

If the learning curve is not to bad maybe I will just go with Magento. If Prestashop is just as powerful but much easier to use, then Prestashop would be my first choice.

Ultimately I want to build a webpage with similar features as dealextreme.com . I also need to be able to add Hong Kong and China shipping options that are automatically calculated via the software and allow for drop shipping options.

Other useful features would be admin access profiles to limit access to certain areas, reward points for purchases, and SEO friendly options. I know there is much more that I need. So I will compile a list soon.

Any recommendations would be greatly appreciated. I am sorry if this whole post has n00b written all over it, but I am eager to learn which option is the best so I can begin work right away. Up until now its been countless hours of running in circles just to arrive to the above two options, Magento and Prestashop.

One last thing, is there anything Prestashop is seriously lacking that Magento offers? Or visa versa?

Thank you for reading my post.