The challenge many e-commerce merchants are facing right now is whether to migrate from Magento 1 to 2 or not. The crux of the problem is that Magento 1.x platform for e-commerce is scheduled to reach tech/security support end, Magento 1 End Of Life (EOL) in a few months (June 2020), and Magento 2.x users are already benefiting from regular content and featured fixes/updates from Adobe.
Moreover, Magento 2 users also don’t have to worry about the looming EOL cutting off their long term security and platform support. So the question is this: should Magento 1.x users stay on their current platform until EOL, or switch to Magento 2 now? There are pros and cons to both options, but we’ve narrowed it down to the most pressing items to consider.
Here’s our take on the benefits and challenges of migrating from Magento 1.x to 2.x:
-Improved Site Performance
Faster page load times aren’t the only benefit to upgrading to Magento 2. Even users on basic accounts gain access to full page caching and native Varnish HTTP Cache support. With more developers improving PHP versions, Magento 2 users will continue to experience improved speeds and features. Best of all, that doesn’t even begin to explore Magento 2’s lightning-fast indexers, image compression and storefront enhancers. Upgrading gives you excellent value for your money.
-Updated Admin Interface/Features
One of the chief complaints about Magento 1.x is the admin panel is, to put it mildly, NOT user-friendly. A cast-iron pain in an uncomfortable place has also been used as a point of comparison. Switching to Magento 2 gives you the new dashboard with real-time analytics monitoring and full user customization for admins. Developers even added the ability to add product videos and images for products directly, too. With video currently the king of internet marketing, this is a feature no e-commerce store should be without.
-Mobile Responsive Design
If your site isn’t easily accessible via mobile devices like smartphones and tablets, Google will not rank it as high on search results. Magento 2 has ground-up mobile browser integration and seamless delivery of content whether visitors are using their smartphone or a laptop computer. It may not affect your site numbers much right now, but it will be a critical issue soon.
Securing the checkout process and customer information has been a top priority in the development of Magento 2. There are regular security update releases that are designed to thwart hackers and identity thieves much more effectively than on the previous platform.
Migration Challenges & Solutions
Migrating your site from Magento 1.x to Magento 2 will take more than a couple of days. It’s an extended effort that demands time and money to execute. Worse still, you can’t conduct business on your site while it is offline for migration. Downtime means sales lost no matter how you look at it.
To mitigate this drawback, experts recommend you hire a Magento migration service to make it happen for you. It takes most of the work off of owners and helps keep migration costs low.
-New Theme Installation
Magento 1.x themes can’t be migrated to Magento 2.0. If you want it to look the same for brand consistency, you can have a designer or front-end developer to create it for you in Magento 2.0.
-New Extension Installation
Like Magento 1.x themes, Magento 1.x extension modules can’t be migrated to Magento 2. If you can’t find a similar module that provides the same function in Magento 2, certified Magento developers can help add that functionality to your site via the source code.
-The Learning Curve
Users who are already accustomed to Magento 1.x admin panel are going to find it takes a bit of adjustment to find everything they want or need. A user-friendly interface doesn’t guarantee it will be a smooth transition for everyone. Give yourself or your development team some time to learn how you operate the site using the new interface.
Understandably, migration from Magento 1.x to 2.x is a major decision that demands planning, time and money to carry out. Start mapping out your migration plan today, and give some serious thought to hiring an experienced migration service agency to make the transition smooth for you. It’s the best option if you’ve decided to move your e-commerce platform.