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The Importance of Migrating Off Magento 1

February 2, 2021

If you use Magento for your eCommerce website platform, you’ve likely heard talk of a shift from Magento 1 to Magento 2. Arguments are being made for both sides of the migration issue, and it is always a hard decision to shift from what you know to something new, even if it is just an upgrade of your current platform. So, you are likely asking the big question… “Do I need to migrate off Magento 1?”

Let us be the loud voice in the room telling you, YES!  Plain and simple. 

Why It’s Critical to Migrate Off Magento 1 As Soon As Possible

If you choose to remain on any version of Magento 1, you are putting your site and your customers at risk. Hackers have already begun to target the platform, and in mid-September, over 2,000 Magento 1 stores were attacked to intercept payment information and personal customer data. If that isn’t reason enough, consider the following:

  • No more security patches – Magento is no longer actively searching for vulnerabilities in the Magento 1 software or addressing any they are made aware of. Lack of security patches will leave your site vulnerable to cyber-attacks and hacks.

    As a business, you have a responsibility to protect your customers’ data and payment details. Without security updates, your checkout may no longer be secure leaving hackers open to access your customer information, potentially leaving you in breach of data protection laws.

    Without security patches released by Magento, you will need to invest in regular Magento security audits. The cost of these services combined will be much higher than the cost of migration off the platform.
  • Unsupported extensions – Extension developers have shifted their focus to Magento 2.  This means the Magento 1 extensions and 3rd party services you are using will quickly become outdated with limited support.

    If you’ve integrated multiple extensions into your Magento 1 store, these modules are likely critical to your site’s functionality. Know that when they stop working properly or issues are identified, there will be no plan for future updates or bug fixes.
  • No new features and functionality – Customer expectations are higher than ever when it comes to online shopping. With end of life, there will be no more improvements to existing core features. Flat out, you won’t be able to keep up with services offered by your competitors.

    With no more feature upgrades to Magento 1 and a lack of Magento 1 extensions being maintained, it will be almost impossible to streamline the customer experience and provide them with the conveniences they expect.
  • Support will become difficult to find (if it’s not already) – Very few developers or agencies will be providing support for a deprecated platform. Agencies that take their Magento work seriously are now focused solely on Magento 2, so finding the right developers for your Magento 1.X development or customizations will be challenging.

    If you are lucky enough to find Magento 1 support from an agency, it likely won’t continue for long and charges for that development work will rise.
  • Difficulty maintaining PCI compliance – Without security updates, you will be putting yourself at serious risk for failing to meet PCI compliance requirements and could face serious consequences. PCI DSS Requirements 6.1 and 6.2 address the need to keep systems up to date with vendor-supplied security patches to protect systems from known vulnerabilities.

    Failing to migrate a Magento 1 eCommerce website will cause you to fall out of PCI DSS compliance – no security patches have been released for new vulnerabilities as of June 2020. Be sure you are familiar with the latest PCI DSS requirements.

Comparing The Top eCommerce Platforms 

Merchants on Magento 1 have two options – migrate to Magento 2 or explore alternatives. Whether your business is small and looking to grow, or you are a large brand considering your options, eCommerce website platform selection is crucial to ensure that both your short- and longer-term business goals can be achieved. 

Evaluate a platform based on how it stacks up to support your business requirements, and choose the best fit for your business. Below are a few of the largest and most frequently used platforms in the eCommerce ecosystem.

Magento

Magento is designed as an enterprise platform that allows B2C and B2B merchants of all sizes to deliver world-class shopping experiences. Named a leader in digital commerce by Gartner, Magento gives you unparalleled agility and flexibility across all touchpoints. There are three major editions of the core product: Commerce, Commerce Cloud, and Open Source. 

Magento Commerce Edition is the premium and paid version of Magento. Commerce can be bought either as a standard on-premise or self-hosted offering whereas Magento Commerce Cloud is licensed and hosted by Magento on their AWS stack. Both premium versions come with Magento technical support, account representatives, and a dedicated customer success manager. Magento Open Source is a free version of the software with limited built-in features and no direct support avenues.

Shopify and Shopify Plus

Shopify, often used by smaller and developing retailers as well as some large brands, is one of the fastest-growing companies in tech today. Shopify offers a fully managed eCommerce site with an affordable start-up price and an easy-to-use administrative interface. 

Shopify works well for businesses that are new to online commerce, stores with less complicated catalogs, shipping, and/or integrations, and business owners lacking coding expertise or in-house technical resources. With some simple steps and the use of a Shopify theme, you can get up and running quickly and often with a lower initial investment. For more advanced features, you will need to add additional apps or employ custom coding. 

It is a SaaS platform (Software as a Service), meaning you don’t buy the platform license and hosting separately. Shopify is a subscription-based service that offers different plan options: Basic, Standard, Advanced, and Plus. A service fee is also collected for every online transaction. Shopify uses its own payment processing and by opting to use your processor of choice you will pay additional per-transaction fees, along with the standard credit card processing fees.

BigCommerce

BigCommerce is also a major player in the world of SaaS eCommerce platforms. It is designed to support any size business. Small, mid-market, and enterprise brands are backed by a cloud-based infrastructure, product management, and more. 

BigCommerce is known for its ability to customize product presentation to maximize your online sales. And, you have your choice of payment solutions with no extra fees. Like Magento Commerce edition, the BigCommerce Enterprise plan unlocks advanced features and provides additional service and support.

What to Consider When Choosing to Replace Magento 1

The best eCommerce platform for you is the one that successfully delivers on the outcomes and objectives you have set for your business. You need to consider your business’s competitive landscape. Selecting a platform can’t be based on overall popularity. You need to pick the solution that allows you to deliver on customer expectations, provide the right tools to sell your products, create amazing shopping experiences, scale your business, improve operations, and ultimately, increase sales. 

To make a good decision you should ask these key questions:

  1. Is the platform agile enough to scale with your business and support changing conditions and long-term growth?
  2. Can the platform support expansion into new sales channels?
  3. Who are your customers? B2B, B2C, Both? International? Will the platform support them all?
  4. Does the platform support third-party integrations and plugins? Does it work seamlessly with your ERP, CRM, and POS systems?
  5. Is the platform best suited for my specific industry and type of merchandise?
  6. Is the platform SEO-friendly? Will I be able to integrate a blog, manage my metadata, implement 301 redirects, use H1 headings?
  7. Is the platform PCI compliant? Will my customers’ credit cards and personal information be safe?
  8. What marketing features does the platform offer for customer acquisition and increased sales? Is there newsletter integration, social media support, email marketing integration, website personalization, coupon codes, and discounts?
  9. Will I be able to track my eCommerce analytics?
  10. How does the platform affect my site’s speed and performance? Does it have robust features and still load quickly?
  11. Can the platform handle my product catalog requirements? Does it handle my SKU structure, variants, digital products, personalization, or bundles?
  12. Does the platform support my fulfillment and shipping requirements? Multiple inventory locations, drop shipping, international and freight shipping?
  13. Will I be able to capture robust customer data and target content based on purchase history or physical location?
  14. Does the platform support multiple payment options? Can I use my payment processor, integrate electronic wallets, or offer financing?

While migrating off Magento 1 may seem daunting, look at it as an exciting opportunity to upgrade your eCommerce platform. You will likely find that you and your customers are thrilled with your decision to do so.


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Interested in Migrating off Magento !?

Contact us to schedule a demo or discuss the best fit platform for your business. Call 443-949-0069 or email getinfo@smartwebdev.com.