Your eCommerce website is only as effective as the technology behind it. Migrating from Magento 1 to Magento 2 might be the single most important decision you ever make for your eCommerce business. This Magento 2 Migration Guide has everything you need to know about Magento platform migration.
Magento 2 is the most powerful eCommerce platform in the world. The recent release of version 2.3 gives eCommerce retailers unprecedented sales power and business management flexibility.
If you’re a Magento 1 customer or are considering re-platforming your website, migrating your eCommerce website from Magento 1 to Magento 2 will make your online business future ready. You’ll be prepared for a mobile-first world, for robust new tech integrations, for changing customer expectations and any scalability challenges that come your way.
Of course, migration is something that every Magento 1 business must think about because…
In the fall of 2018, Joe Ayyoub, then Director of Support Operations at Magento, announced that support for Magento 1 will end in June 2020.
What does this mean? Depending on your version (community, commerce, 1.X), software support may include both quality fixes and security patches. Magento software support and/or security maintenance only applies to Magento software and not to third-party extensions or customizations.
“Maintenance of extensions, customization or other modifications to the Magento codebase, including compliance with security and privacy standards (PCI, SOC, ISO, etc.), are the express responsibility of the merchant.” – Joe Ayyoub, Magento
This means that the closer we get to June 2020, the more susceptible Magento 1 sites will be to security breaches, data transfer issues, and performance problems. More importantly, it means that Magento 1 customers need to start planning their migrations now.
As you’ll see in the sections below, Migration is essentially a rebuild. If you haven’t started looking for a Magento 2 migration partner, now is the time.
Magento 2, the transformed version of the Magento eCommerce Platform, comes with a fresh architecture, code structure, and database design. The best minds in the eCommerce development industry have made it more user-friendly, more in-sync with modern eCommerce trends, and more valuable for eCommerce retailers.
We’ve already discussed the Magento 2 pros and cons for your business, so here’s a recap of the benefits you can expect from migrating to Magento 2:
For merchants who have set up a Magento 1 store in the last year or two, moving to a new platform so soon may be unpleasant. It may also raise questions about whether a new version of Magento (Magento 3?) will be released in the next few years, and that yet another migration may be required.
While no one can predict the future, most experts in the eCommerce development space (us included) are thrilled by Magento 2’s features and codebase. There are compelling reasons to believe that Magento 2 and it’s later versions will be around for a long time. After all, its predecessor, Magento 1, was around for more than a decade and changed the face of eCommerce.
Here are three reasons to believe in Magento 2: Magento 2 was built for modern eCommerce. It is mobile-optimized, ready for omnichannel and uses the latest PHP 7.X codebase. Magento 2 is also extremely flexible and has a large community of independent developers working to improve it every single day.
We’ll explore this subject in more detail in a later article, but for now, be confident that migrating to Magento 2 will future-proof your eCommerce business and technology investment.
Migrating from Magento 1 to Magento 2 is a complex process, but it can be broken down into four parts:
Before you can plan your Magento 1 to 2 Migration, you need to decide whether you want to use Magento 2 Commerce or Magento 2 Community. What’s the difference? Let’s start with cost. Magento 2 Commerce provides best-in-class features, performance and support. The Magento 2 Commerce license has associated fees that vary based on the type and size of your business. In comparison with other eCommerce platforms, these license costs are competitive.
On the other hand, the Magento 2 Community edition is free. Magento 2 Community is open-source software for developers & tech-savvy merchants. While Magento 1 Community could compete with the Magento 1 enterprise edition performance, that is not the case with Magento 2. The community edition may be a viable choice for some smaller retailers.
Here’s a simple table you can use to compare the key features of each edition:
|Magento 2 Community Edition||Magento 2 Commerce Edition|
|Promotions and Pricing|
|Search Engine Optimization|
|Checkout, Payment and Shipping|
|Order Management and Customer Service|
|Support for Global Sites|
|Architecture and Security|
|Multiple Store Views|
|Analytics and Reporting|
|Layout and Theming|
|Flexible Couponing and Promotions|
|Full Page Caching System|
|Rules-based Related Products|
|Rules-based Up-sells and Cross-sells|
|Private Sales with “Invite-a-Friend” Emails|
|Advanced Content Management|
|Management of Customer Attributes|
|Extended Admin Rights Management|
|Marketing and Merchandising|
|Administrator Roles and Privileges|
|Content & Staging|
You may not need all the Magento 2 Commerce edition features right away, but if you plan on scaling your business to the enterprise level, it’s worth considering.
Every Magento 1 to 2 migration will vary based on your specific business needs (B2B or B2C), platform scope and customizations. However, based on the 200+ Magento projects we have launched since we got started, here is what you can expect based on the size of your business:
|Business Size||Migration Timeline||Migration Costs|
|Small||2 – 3 months||< $30,000|
|Medium||3 – 4 months||< $60,000|
|Large||4 – 6+ months||< $100,000|
Migration can be an intensive process and in this industry, you definitely get what you pay for. Mayank Agrawal the Chief Technical Officer of DotcomWeavers says:
“If a developer gives you a very low estimate, it is likely too good to be true. A $10,000 Magento migration can quickly turn into a $100,000 problem if not done right. Magento is a complex platform and a successful implementation requires a skilled and experienced team. Paying less for a broken or buggy site with a poor user experience is a terrible investment. Find a professional Magento developer. It is more than worth it.”
Magento has a collection of certified partners who know the platform and can help you navigate the complex migration process. Look for a company with 5+ years of experience and several dozens past Magento projects.
A good developer – someone Magento recognizes as a partner – will have at least 5 certified Magento solutions specialists on their team. The company itself may also be a Magento Solution partner. Look for some (or all) of these badges when deciding on a Magento 1 to 2 Migration partner.
Going with a Magento partner means you don’t have to do any of the manual work, which can be substantially based on your business structure, database setup, and number of SKUs. Finally, be sure to ask lots of questions. If the answers you get don’t sound like they are coming from an expert who can do exactly what you need, it’s time to look elsewhere.
Yes, Magento 2 is much more user-friendly than its predecessor. It’s also quite different from Magento 1. When planning your migration, remember that you need time to learn the new system. The way you add and configure products, customers and promotions have changed.
In most cases, a good Magento migration partner will train you and your team in how to use Magento 2, so you are ready to go on launch day.
DIY is an option, but even with an in-house developer, most businesses lack the skills and experience to manage a Magento migration without disrupting business. You’ll need:
And that’s minimum. You’ll likely need more resources on hand to manage your migration within your timeline and budget. You should also remember that no one can migrate your customizations from Magento 1 to Magento 2. They need to be coded, tested and maintained from scratch.
Here’s a high-level look at the migration process to give you an idea of the complexity involved.
As you can see, DIY migration may be technically possible, but we strongly recommend you go with a professional developer!
There’s a lot that needs to be done before you and your Magento developer can begin your migration. In fact, you’ll want this information on hand before talking with a Magento 2 developer.
Migrating from Magento 1 to Magento 2 is a big undertaking, but it doesn’t have to be a difficult one. Let’s review at the benefits and considerations of migrating to Magento 2.
Magento 2 delivers superior cloud-hosted performance at scale, freedom from IT bottlenecks with creating, scheduling, and launching compelling content, and true business intelligence capabilities. Plus Magento’s unmatched flexibility enables its global community of partners and developers to deliver virtually any commerce experience in record time. It is also a serious undertaking in terms of time and resources.
At the end of the day, your Migration needs to happen before June 2020. We recommend you start looking for a professional Magento developer soon.
If you found this article helpful or have questions, please let us know in the comments. For Magento 1 merchants who are preparing to Migrate to Magento 2, please contact us today for a free consultation to understand your options.