From Magento to Magento: What You Should Know about Migrating from 1 to 2

The decision to move from Magento 1 to Magento 2 is not one that can be taken overnight. It needs careful planning and execution. However, as Magento has decided to discontinue support for its Magento 1 platform from June 2020 onwards, e-commerce business owners have no choice but to make the move. Whether it is about Magento extensions, themes, importing data and media, or hiring a Magento Partner, this post touches upon all crucial aspects while also presenting the benefits of the migration.

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Magento powers over 1.2% of the internet. This accounts for more than 12% of all e-commerce sites. Magento, Inc.’s decision of discontinuing support completely for the Magento 1 platform from 2020 onwards has created quite a stir in the e-commerce world. It, therefore, makes sense for e-retailers to migrate to Magento 2 without further ado and ensure that their website continues to be up and running with better performance, including faster page loading speed.

This post will help you understand the factors that go into the Magento migration process.
Let’s begin.

Considerations for Migrating to Magento 2

Budget

Setting a budget for the migration will not only set the ball rolling for this project, it will also help you forecast the ROI for it. It is necessary to budget rationally and think of the migration as an investment for your business’s better future. The exact cost of the migration will depend on your e-commerce website’s unique requirements.

The number of Magento Partners (more on this in a bit) that are officially trained in Magento 2 is limited, which is why their demand is high. They may charge you either a fixed fee or per-hour payment. You might want to budget for them depending on the degree of the customization your site needs, the graphic design and frontend customization required, the number of extensions needed, and the Magento version you’re currently using.

Extensions and Integrations

Magento 2 extensions are widely available in the Magento Marketplace. The good news is that even if the ones you use currently aren’t available, you will likely find other comparable extensions for your e-store.

Make sure to get all your mission-critical extensions in place. You also have the option of developing features through customized extensions.

In case you use third-party integrations (accounting systems, ERP, CRM tools, etc.) on your current platform, make sure they have a connector available for Magento 2. You can also build custom integrations if the need arises.

Timing

In 2018, Magento announced it will extend its support and security patches to Magento 1 through June 2020. Sooner or later, all Magento 1 websites will migrate to 2. It is always advisable to make this impending move sooner. Delaying it can lead to several inconveniences, such as:

  1. Implementing the much-needed new features and upgrades on Magento 1 will mean that you will have to repeat this on Magento 2 later on. This, in turn, means you will have to pay double the amount for development.
  2. Magento 2 comes with new high-end features, which you may want to get your hands on right away. It is better to migrate than implement them on Magento 1, which isn’t going to receive any more upgrades in any case.
  3. Migration involves considerable planning, testing, implementation, and deployment, which can take a reasonable amount of time (two to six months or more). It is, therefore, best to begin moving to Magento 2 now, so you can complete the migration in a timely and an organized manner without rushing it, thereby making the process easy for yourself.
Magento Partner

Hiring a Magento Partner can save you a ton of time, effort, and worry as factors such as project management and training of staff will be sorted. However, make sure you hire a Magento 2 Trained Partner as they are officially certified by Magento.

You may want to inquire about their experience with Magento 2 and check out a couple of live websites they’ve already migrated. You can also verify their credentials by looking for their Magento 2 Trained badge in the Magento Partner Directory.

Typically, credible partners use in-house development resources and work with Magento Certified developers. You can use the Magento Certification Directory to ascertain that their developers are, in fact, in-house.

Benefits of Migrating to Magento 2

The entire purpose behind running a flawless website is to provide visitors and customers with an exceptional user experience, which in turn, leads to higher conversions and sales. This is where the importance of migrating to Magento 2 comes in. Mentioned ahead are a few critical features of Magento 2 that can affect customer experience.

  • 50% faster page load time
  • Touch-friendly and fully-responsive UX
  • Better UX for admin panel with modernized backend
  • E-retailers can manage larger volumes of SKUs and orders
  • It is easier to create and manage website content
  • It offers better SEO and search features
  • It has fewer requirements for third-party and/or custom extensions
  • It provides easy checkout and lowers cart abandonment rate
  • It helps create more user-friendly and mobile-optimized experiences
  • It assists with conveying custom catalogs and price lists to customers
  • It helps target content and marketing initiatives to precise customer segments
  • It allows you to employ automated business rules to arrive upon the most suitable fulfillment costs and delivery times
  • Users can choose from self-hosting and PaaS options.

Things to Keep in Mind When Migrating to Magento 2

Migration Effort

Magento 2 is equipped with a vastly different architecture and database design. Migrating to it will need you to follow the due process, which can take substantial time. However, according to Magento, the migration is only 20% larger than a Magento 1 upgrade. To a great extent, the time and effort required to move to Magento 2 depends on the complexity of the task, the redundancies to be removed, and the number of extensions and customizations needed.

Importing Data and Media Files

The Magento 2 Data Migration Tool has been created to help customers with the migration. It can come handy when you want to import your product and customer data to the new version. The tool uses map files to move the data to your Magento store. It also checks for the compatibility between the old and new database architecture, monitors the data transfer system, generates records, and runs data authentication checks.

The tool can be operated through migration configuration settings, or by moving your key data to the database or by shifting incremental data updates to the storefront and admin panel.

Migrating media files (images, videos) entails a different procedure in that they will have to be moved manually. Magento has created a guide that provides detailed instructions on migrating media files stored in the database and in the file system.

Moving Extensions and Themes

In all probability, Magento 1 extensions and themes will be discordant with Magento 2. However, Magento’s Code Migration Toolkit can help you with moving some of the extensions and custom codes.
It is best to rebuild old Magento extensions and themes so they can work in tandem with the new configuration. You may want to work with an experienced developer to create/access new versions of the extensions and themes.

Performance

The migration process isn’t easy and hence, it is only natural to experience a few glitches as it unfolds. Sometimes, certain codes or extensions may not function in the desired manner. It is, therefore, crucial to work with developers who are experienced and certified in managing large-scale Magento 2 migrations.

How Migration Takes Place

The Magento migration process involves four stages:

Data Migration

The Magento 2 Data Migration Tool enables developers to migrate stored data and settings using CLI commands. The process of moving business-critical data, and settings and configurations from the old platform to the new one becomes simpler and cleaner, based on the rules defined in the XML files.

Extension Migration

Extensions enable developers to add new features and expand the functionalities of your Magento store. Magento 2-compatible extensions are easily available at the Magento Marketplace. Extensions from Magento 1 may not work with the new version, so you must install only those relevant to your migrated store. Magento developers are currently trying to figure out a way to port Magento 1 extensions to Magento 2.

Customization Migration

Due to the architectural differences between Magento 1 and 2, you will need the Code Migration Toolkit to use the custom code. This migration may need some extra work to ensure that the custom code integrates effectively with your Magento 2 store.

Theme Migration

The purpose of migrating to Magento 2 is to offer superior customer experiences with the help of new tools and technologies. Magento 2 themes have a huge role to play in this. However, you cannot directly move Magento 1 themes to 2, and will need to create new themes for the latter while making them responsive to provide optimal user experience.

Conclusion

With Magento 1 on its way out, it is a good idea to migrate to the latest version and keep your e-commerce business scalable and competent. A future-ready platform will provide you with access to the newest features and extensions, with easy maintenance, lowered costs, and a plethora of benefits. Hop aboard the Magento 2 bandwagon as soon as possible to fortify your e-store for enhanced efficiency.