On June 30, 2020, we bid our farewell to Magento 1. For 12 years, this CMS has been a safe haven for online stores all over the globe – over 25,000 to be precise. Shortly after Adobe acquired Magento in 2018, the company has announced that they will end its support of the system and offered their customers, partners, and developers help transitioning to the new and improved Magento 2.
Over more than a decade, Magento 1 revolutionized the world of online business. Yet some companies still hesitate to embrace Magento 2, even a year after it has been introduced. The main reason for this being associated issues and hurdles that might endanger the way these businesses run.
Scared if website customizations will survive the switch, or whether all features and saved data will migrate unharmed? Will the Magento 1 themes run as smoothly on Magento 2? Let’s take a look at the most common Magento 2 migration issues and find out how to address them — all to avoid technical glitches and overhead costs.
A Quick Look at the Migration Process
The process of migrating from Magento 1 to 2 involves three main steps: pre-migration, migration, and post-migration.
Before starting the process, we analyze the store’s data and content to understand how much manual work needs to be done, prepare project specifications that include every task, and help draw up a project plan with milestones and definitions of done.
This step begins with creating a testing environment by installing Magento 2 on a new server. Then, the extensions, modules, data, and content are migrated over. It’s important to note that not all third-party extensions have a Magento 2 version. Magento 1 themes are incompatible with the new platform and if you have a custom site design, it will have to be revamped or completely redesigned.
The last step is synchronizing your order history and customer data to make a seamless transition from the old site to the new site.
Magento 1 to Magento 2 migration is time-consuming. On average it takes about three months. Granted, this period can be longer if the site is complex or highly customized, and especially if you run into pitfalls.
What Are the Main Challenges of Migration to Magento 2?
Like any other change in life, migrating from Magento 1 to Magento 2 posed certain risks to business owners. Based on the feedback Elogic got from the clients, we were able to pin down the most popular reasons why they chose to stay on Magento 1 just a little while longer or simply hesitated to move to Magento 2.
Drop in Your Website Speed & Performance
A common misconception is that a business has to be shut down during migration. Yes, the process takes a while (one to three months depending on store size), but business owners are free to continue operating as usual. Website speed might slow down to some extent during and/or after the migration, but the losses can be minimized or avoided altogether.
Solution: You can improve Magento 2 performance by:
- improving time to first byte
- using CDN for faster media and content delivery
- avoiding using JS Bundling
- augmenting the CSS delivery
Or better yet – leaving the migration process to specialists who can achieve zero downtime for your website and make sure that the transition process goes smoothly and no speed loss will occur in the future. Our Elogic tip to do this is to migrate the website at night during low sales season.
For planned downtime, retailers can put up friendly signs for the shoppers:
When working on the TurcomUSA migration, we at Elogic had one main goal: to create a website that is going to be fast and functional, even with all the newly added integrations. The collaboration was a success and grew into a long-lasting partnership that brought us even more fascinating projects.
As eCommerce depends highly on their SEO and search engine rankings, changes in URL structure caused by the migration can cause a fuss. You can witness a drop in page ranks or erroneous redirects from old to new pages, duplicate pages, localization issues, loss in traffic, and lower sales.
Solution: the best option for keeping your SEO healthy after the migration is mapping out your old site architecture and matching it up with the new site to check that all of your pages retain their ranking and you don’t lose traffic as a result of broken or unavailable pages.
Plus, Magento 2 has its own advanced native SEO tools. All SEO issues can be resolved by tweaking Magento SEO settings. You can see the Elogic info sheet and see if you can do it yourself or with the help of a Magento SEO consultant.
Owning a lot of personal and financial information, eCommerce websites are always a target for hackers. A hacked online store can lead to data leakage, fraud, and loss of customers. While Magento 1 wasn’t famous for its security, Magento 2 is definitely a huge step-up, definitely one of the most secure CMS in the world. Which should be the ultimate reason to transition.
Solution: Generally, to avoid any and all security issues with Magento 2, avoid low-quality third-party extensions which pose the biggest threat. Do your research, get your Magento 2 modules from verified vendors, or get Magento professionals to protect your website from hacks and malware.
UX/UI Compatibility Issues
Some Magento 1 extensions may not exist in Magento 2 or simply wouldn’t function properly. As a result, business owners face compatibility issues and extra expenses, and customers have trouble shopping and checking out.
Just like extensions, your site’s theme and design cannot simply be transferred over. The reason is that Magento 2 uses a modern architecture and has different frontend and backend requirements. It is possible to modify your Magento 1 theme to make it usable in Magento 2; however, since you’ve decided to migrate, you might as well give your site a facelift with a fresh custom design.
Solution: When clients want to migrate to Magento 2, we recommend they redesign their site. The reasoning behind this is that a modern platform like Magento 2 requires the front end to be built on top of it. Plus, now that people are accessing the web more on mobile, it makes sense to take advantage of Magento 2’s mobile-friendly responsive design features.
When it comes to extensions, it’s best to find out well in advance which ones fit your business needs and are compatible with Magento 2,
To help business owners who decided to take the leap and migrate, MageWorx has added ‘migration’ possibilities to their most popular solutions. Being one of the pioneers in Magento extensions development, the company knows all about the Magento 1 to Magento 2 migration challenges.
If you don’t want to deal with it yourself, get professional help as Roller Rabbit did. When they came to us at Elogic asking for help migrating their platform, we saw an opportunity to not just carry out a safe transition, but also fix some design flaws and revamp the layout for a stronger online presence.
Info & Data Migration Problems
Magento 2 data migration isn’t as simple as dragging and dropping. A lot of the migration has to be done manually, whether through custom scripts or custom development (for extensions, modules, and design). Eventually, a client risks losing crucial data stored on a website (e.g. login data, content, and previous order records), which could result in losing customer trust and a lot of money.
Solution: One way would be of course to hire a Magento migration consultant, but there are also ways to prepare for a safe migration on your own. For instance, backup your data in several locations, and/or divide your data into parts and migrate them from most to least important block after block. This way, you’ll avoid risks associated with data transfer and save time.
Steep Learning Curve
With Magento 2, there wasn’t just new technology added, but the entire platform was essentially re-written. New EAV architecture, Varnish technology, ObjectManager, Declarative Schema – the fact that most of this needs to be learned from scratch has, of course, raised some eyebrows.
Solution: Learning all this isn’t impossible, and maybe even desirable for some. In our experience, there have been many cases where the data structure was messed up that we had to do a fresh install of a system to structure the data correctly before moving on with Magento 2 migration. It takes an expert to conduct an adequate site audit to determine if custom migration scripts are needed or if it’s better to just start with a clean install of Magento.
To overcome a steep learning curve, you can take advantage of the Adobe Commerce Developer Guide with helpful guides and resources. Or, if that seems like too much trouble, you can simply hire a Magento developer to save time and make sure the migration goes smoothly.
Solid website architecture helps it sustain heavy traffic, and go through store customizations and technical updates without hiccups. What if migration shakes up the architecture?
Solution: Taking care of architectural elements during migration yourself is one way to go. But probably the best way to keep them safe when transitioning is to let Magento specialists handle all necessary ecommerce architecture elements. For instance, Sulalat Coffee saw the transition as a big step to improve its ecommerce back-office operations. We helped them not only re-design but also add PayPal and numerous other third-party integrations.
Long time of development
Definition of Done (DoD) is a predetermined set of criteria that is applied to a project to ensure the development team agrees that tasks have been accomplished with a high level of quality. In other words, DoD is used to measure whether the project has been completed or not.
What happens when we apply this to Magento migration? If we don’t have a clear timeline, plan, and understanding of what “done” means, the project can go on indefinitely. You might need to have a well-thought-out ecommerce strategy in sight to ensure Magento 2 migration never opens up your site and users to vulnerabilities. Ideally, we want to migrate as quickly as possible while keeping in line with the DoD.
Solution: To avoid this (potentially very deep) pitfall, qualified companies offering Magento 2 migration services need to get all the details from the site owner and perform a site audit — because the responsibility for setting the DoD is almost entirely on the software development team.
Sometimes, the reason that prevents business owners from transferring to Magento 2 is the costs associated with the process. Depending on your business goals, theme, and extensions, you can choose one of several Magento editions.
Solution: The wisest solution is to dig deep into all the possibilities Magento 2 offers and the price for each of them. Take into account what functionality and maintenance your website needs, and you may discover that the costs aren’t as high as you thought they would be.
Address Magento 1 to Magento 2 Migration Challenges All at Once
As we see, there’s more than just one challenge associated with the Magento 1 to Magento 2 migration. It is possible to solve them on one’s own, but this will take time and effort, which some can’t afford. It’s just not always possible to quickly teach company workers to deal with new technology in order to preserve architecture, website speed, and security. Some companies probably don’t even have workers with the necessary knowledge.
To address all Magento 1 to Magento 2 migration challenges at once, and to make it quick and get great results, hiring a Magento development company is always a good idea. Here’s what you get from working with Elogic:
- Top-notch selection of the most qualified Magento specialists with vast experience in Magento development, migration, and maintenance;
- Secure data transfer with no losses;
- Minimum to zero downtime over the entire transfer period;
- Guaranteed and improved security;
- No architectural damages or losses.
- 24/7 maintenance support.