Migrating from Magento 1 to Magento 2 is no simple feat. Magento 2 has been conceived with a completely different architecture apart from all the design modifications done to the database, making it significantly different from the earlier version. This article serves as an introductory guide to the upgrade process required as well as the planning and resources we recommend for a successful migration.

The amount of time and effort needed to migrate to Magento 2 depends on the number of customizations, the complexity level and the number of extensions executed by the merchant. It is imperative that this kind of migration be carried out by trusted Magento experts.. You don’t want to risk information loss or process malfunction in the new store at the hands of inexperienced developers.

What steps should be followed on a migration plan?
As a general concept, we cannot forget that this isn’t just an update, it’s a migration to a completely new platform. Therefore, we take care to factor in the following aspects for a Magento migration plan:

• Data (Products and clients)

• Templates (UX/UI)

• Extensions

• Custom Coding

• Migration

• Testing

Step 1: Data

Let’s begin by preparing the data for the Magento 1 upgrade towards Magento 2.

Magento has created a useful tool to help with the product and client data import to the new Magento 2 version: “Magento 2 Data Migration Tool”. This tool utilizes map files to transform the data in the Magento Store. It verifies the coherence between the Magento 1 and 2 database structures (cells and fields), follows up on the data transfer process, creates registries and executes data verification tests, and also migrates the configuration information within the databases and transfers incremental data.

Step 2: Templates

Regarding the look and feel of the site, this may be a good opportunity to reevaluate whether you’d like to create a new design from scratch or take advantage of a template or previous design that can be personalized. Unfortunately, design is not something that can be easily migrated from one site to another. In Magento, design is integrated within the functional code, which is why we can’t just “copy” from the old site and “paste” on the new one.

Step 3: Extensions

Verify the existing extensions and decide which are required for your new Magento 2 store, since the extensions developed for Magento 1 are usually incompatible with the new version, except for those cases in which the developer has already done an upgrade. In any case, we must discard the extensions that haven’t been updated or we substitute them for a similar one. If the extension is indispensable and can’t be updated or replaced, the custom development of the required functions must be taken into account.

Step 4: Custom Coding

Consider the platform’s upgrades. If you have had your online store with Magento 1 for some time now, it’s likely that we have detected flows that may be improved, functions that can improve the shopping or managing experience, or maybe a change in the current user interface. This would be the best time to plan and enhance the online store.

Step 5: Migration

Once we have our extension and upgrade lists and Magento 2 is installed and operating, we must begin the actual migration process. All activities in the Magento 1 administration panel including Cron Jobs must come to a halt except for the Order management functions. We recommend migrating data from a Magento 1 replicated database instance to reduce the time your store will be offline.

Step 6: Testing

Once we’ve migrated the data, we’ll need to test your new Magento 2 store thoroughly. We recommend exhaustive testing on an administrative level and user level, since it’d be best to test it as it was when deployed the first time.

The detail in the process applied in each of these steps requires a comprehensive plan for your store to be successfully migrated.  In order to guarantee success, make sure you have the support of experienced developers who have done this before.  At ObjectWave we’re very proud of our 100% success rate and extensive Magento experience and are ready to answer any Magento question you have.  Don’t hesitate to get in touch at info@objectwave.com or by calling 312-269-0111.

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