With many of Magento 2’s initial instabilities now resolved, many retailers are considering whether to migrate to the new, feature-rich platform.
Magento 2 has proven itself to be a significant step-up from Magento 1.x versions – especially when it comes to usability and performance – and with Magento’s support for 1.x versions set to finish by November 2018, now is the time for Magento users to start making decisions about their next platform.
Here we answer all your burning Magento 2 questions.
I'm on Magento 1. What should I do?
If you’re already using Magento 1, it’s not advisable to spend time and budget on upgrading to a later version of Magento 1 now that Magento 2 is available, and with Magento’s announcement that it will end support for Magento EE 1.x versions after 2018.
Without Magento support, your Magento 1.x store will stop receiving the security updates you need to keep your site safe, so migrating to Magento 2 or another platform is a must.
What advantages does Magento 2 offer?
The Magento 2 ecommerce platform offers many benefits:
- Improved performance
- New backend admin panel, boasting a better user experience (UX) for admin users
- Fully responsive and touch friendly for superior UX
- More native features; fewer extensions required
- Future-proofing; Magento 1 only critically supported until 2018
- Easier and less costly to maintain
- Easier and more cost effective to add functionality
- Better native frontend
- Regular releases of new versions means new functionality
- Self hosted or platform-as-a-service solution
- Enhanced B2B functionality available
Should I postpone my move from Magento 1 to Magento 2?
If you've recently invested time and money into moving to a later version of Magento 1, it’s understandable that you’ll want to get as much use out of your platform as possible before you commit time and budget to a Magento 2 replatforming. After all, the decision to move from M1 to M2 is far from a standard upgrade project; it’s closer to a re-platforming exercise because Magento 2 uses entirely new coding structures and database architecture.
That said, the November 2018 deadline is creeping ever closer, and Magento 2 replatforming is inevitable, so any investment into your Magento 1 store in the meantime may be better spent on upgrading to Magento 2 to avoid duplicating efforts. Migrating even a very basic Magento store is not a fast process, so now is the time to consider your course of action.
How do I choose my next platform?
There's no one-size-fits-all ecommerce platform. Any decisions you make about a platform should be based on an understanding of that platform's ability to support your business goals. For this reason our consultants always recommend that you conduct a Discovery before making any major decisions about your next ecommerce platform.
The Discovery – a series of workshops designed to identify the simplest way of addressing a business challenge – is a compelling way to prime your digital initiative for success by ensuring your business objectives are realised through an appropriate digital investment.
This will enable you to assess the requirements of the project – i.e. why the upgrade is needed, the current pain points, how they can be solved, the required functionality, the effort and estimated budget requirements, and so on.
Ultimately everyone needs to clearly agree on the goals of the project, the best approach, and the requirements for succeeding with the project.
Once you know these things, you can then decide how best to proceed. Most importantly, you can estimate the project as accurately as possible and work out a reasonable budget.
What else should I consider about my replatforming project?
No two replatforming projects are the same, but the more investigation work carried out beforehand, the more accurate the timelines and estimates will be.
An upgrade is a good opportunity to strip out any obsolete code, unused extensions, and redundant functionality. It's also a great time to review which bits of functionality are actually needed. Chances are you have some functionality that isn’t used enough to justify spending budget on upgrading extensions, or carrying out work to ensure compatibility. The more that can be dropped, the less there might be to upgrade, which means a lower cost.
Quality assurance (QA) testing time must also be factored in to ensure all main user journeys (customers and admin users) are not negatively impacted by upgrade work. Testing is a huge part of a replatforming project and needs to be planned and factored into every stage.
As with any digital investment, the success of your project will come down to careful planning and assessment of your business requirements conducted as part of a detailed Discovery process.
Who’s using Magento 2?
A number of well-known brands have successfully launched new stores on Magento 2. A great example is Graze whose award-winning shop – built by Inviqa, and hosted by Elastera – generated £3 million in incremental sales revenue in the first 12 months.
CTO Mark Wood said: ‘When we looked at what we wanted to achieve, it was clear that using Magento Enterprise Edition 2 would allow us to test, learn, and iterate without betting the business’.
Inviqa is behind the first ever UK site on Magento 2, Missguided’s meteoric ecommerce growth, and Graze’s shift from subscription to ecommerce.
Get in touch to learn more about our ecommerce credentials and consulting services, and to discuss how we can support you on your digital journey.