In this episode James and Chelsea talk about replatforming an ecommerce site from Magento 1 to WordPress WooCommerce.
Replatform to WooCommerce
Podcast Replatform to WooCommerce
On today’s episode, we’re going to be talking about how you might want to change from Magento to WooCommerce.
So today, we’re gonna be talking about Magento to WooCommerce. As a migration process, if anybody has been operating in the E commerce landscape for some while may know Magento historically has been the big player in terms of E commerce platforms or websites, been around since the late 2000s. Magento comes in two flavours Magento, one and Magento. Two. Historically, we actually, as an agency used to build a lot of Magento one websites, and we still see a lot of clients that are using Magento. One. The big issue with the platform is that in June 2020 Magento, is a company which is now owned by Adobe, have decided to drop support altogether for Magento. One, this is something that they’ve been teasing for some while. And eventually, after sort of shifting the date a few times had settled on June 2020 is the date to do this. What that means in practicality terms is that Magento will no longer issue any security updates or provide any kind of support for that platform. They consider it obsolete and end of life, which basically is left high and dry. Every ecommerce website that has been running Magento, one up until this point, magenta two got released about three years ago. And for a while quite rightly, a lot of developers wouldn’t move to it because of the sort of initial teething issues of a new platform and potential bugs. And also, it’s quite an expensive amount of development to move to because it’s not a simple process. whilst moving the data between the two platforms is quite easy. It actually requires a full site rebuild of everything visual that you see. So the development cost is quite considerable. And that’s that’s really even assuming that the client needs to be on Magento in the first place. So Magento itself is becoming more of an enterprise level product now. And it’s it is very suitable for certain businesses. And we will be the first to say to clients if they need Magento, we’ve got a number of clients who we’ve recommended use a Magento agency to rebuild their website. However, at the lower end of the market, you’re sort of up to a million pound turnover up to 10,000 product database size. As an agency, we tend to push WooCommerce as the as the alternative to that. And the main reason being that it is considerably cheaper to develop for the client, but also now in 2020 offers a very similar range of functionality to what Magento offers the main issue we see between the two platforms as we scale and size of product inventory. So if a client’s got a particular amount of inventory that needs to be held on the website, typically many, many sort of 10s and hundreds of 1000s of products, then we we actually do suggest that they look into Magento as a platform for that, if the client has got a few 1000 products, and takes a few 100 orders a day. WooCommerce is absolutely adequate for what they need, and actually offer some great admin functionality. It’s easy to work. It got lots of third party plugins that can integrate with different systems, it supports every payment provider. And it’s actually just a really brilliant platform to start trading on, especially for new startup businesses as well. And the other the other sort of platform that comes into conversation quite a lot is Shopify, which has become like sort of the the new kid on the block really, in the last couple of years and really came around after Magento started at the end of life for Magento. One, and Shopify works like a subscription product. So you sign up to Shopify ecosystem where you sign up to their service. And it’s fine for very, very low end businesses who just need to start trading very quickly. And you soon find an issue with it in that as soon as you want to do anything different or anything bespoke, you can’t because you’re within Shopify as platform, so you’re always within the restrictions of what they will let you do. Take an example, they recently changed some functionality where they wouldn’t allow MailChimp to operate within their platform, which obviously if your business relies on MailChimp, for your outbound emails, your email marketing and other business processes, and Shopify just drop it, there’s nothing you can do about that. And because they take the decision globally across our entire platform, using WooCommerce. And Magento, actually, to that matter means that you’re in control of your own website. So it’s your code your website. If you want something developing custom on it, you can get it done. No one’s going to tell you what you can and can’t do with it. So there’s major benefits for having a platform that can be changed and customised by your developer of choice. So yeah, We’re a big, big fan of that. We’ve been migrating a lot of customers from Magento to WooCommerce, over the last 18 months. And we’ve actually got a pretty slick process now in terms of moving customer data, Product Data orders, all over from Magento, one to WooCommerce. And I think we’re nearly at the end of our migration cycle. Now with all our previous Magento one customers, some of them have gone off to Magento, two, and some of them have gone to WooCommerce. And a few of them are sticking with Magento. One. But we’ve been very clear to say that, obviously, as a platform, it’s no longer supported from a security point of view. And when you enter in the commerce, Business, Security is absolutely paramount. So it’s really important that we look at what the best platform for the client is. Most of the clients that we tend to deal with, as an agency suit WooCommerce. And yeah, we’re quite happy to, to sort of show people a demo of how ecommerce works, explain the differences between WooCommerce and Magento. And also just make people feel comfortable that if that’s the platform, they want to move to that it’s the right one to grow with going forwards.
So you spoke a little bit about the slick process now that we have in place taking people from Magento on to e commerce, could you go into that a little bit more give us some detail of the entire process and how it would look from the client journey point of view?
Yeah, definitely. So when we’re looking at migrating a client’s website from Magento, to WooCommerce, and the key things that we need to consider about moving over our the, the customers themselves, their details, the orders that they previously placed, and the products, the products can be set up in different ways. In Magento, you might have a stack does a very basic product with a single price, or it could be a variable product that’s got different colour options, or a t shirt that comes in in green, which comes in four sizes. So all these things need to be thought about when bringing it over to the equivalent WooCommerce setup with that. And the big issue that we tend to find with customers moving from Magento to any other platform actually is passwords. So quite rightly Magento encrypts user passwords. And whenever you re platforming, typically you can’t pass over the encrypted password between the two systems. So from the user journey point of view, when they go on to the website, for the first time after it’s changed over, they have to reset their password because the new site does not know what their password is. So that’s typically the biggest issue we have from a customer point of view. And we tend to recommend to our clients that are going through this process that they do a campaign. So those clients and let them know those new website, and they’ll have to reset their password for security reasons. Apart from that, all the product data, the order history, the page content, all of that can move over very easily. And we’ve got a suite of automated tools that will bring that over as long as we can get the right database access. And it’s actually been a very successful process for us over the last 18 months or so we’ve done over 20 Magento, two ecommerce replatforming. And every one of them has managed to bring over pretty much everything they needed. It’s only where there’s been some very specific out on bespoke functionality in Magento, where it’s not quite being impossible to do everything. But actually the vast majority of these projects have gone really, really smoothly. So it’s not a scary prospect as people might think it would be. But it’s certainly one that’s worth thinking about when they’re looking at Magento. One, the future support for that. What would happen if there is a big security problem with that, and there’s going to be no forthcoming patches to fix that issue. And the last thing anybody wants is hacked e commerce websites. So I think it’s really important that we we move people to the right platform so they can stay secure for the for the future.
And how have clients been finding this switch over from Magento to WooCommerce, in terms of like different functionalities and any additional tools that they might find on WooCommerce that they previously didn’t have access to on Magento? One.
So interestingly, everyone, we’ve moved over from Magento to WooCommerce, have found it a really positive experience. And typically, we’ve come across challenges within the businesses where they assume everything’s going to be the same. And we have to explain that it is fundamentally not the same system. So where people were previously printing out orders or how they would appear necessarily in Magento is not how they appear in any other platform. And so there is a bit of a learning curve with businesses to get over that barrier to explain it isn’t the same thing. It is actually more modern. It looks more modern from an admin point of view, and it’s easy to use, but everything’s not exactly the same. And it’s just really important that everyone realises that that’s the case with they sort of the functionality they’ve got there’s different between the two. The benefits of moving to WordPress WooCommerce are All things like better admins, it’s easy to understand everything’s in one screen, it’s easy to manage the products. It’s just cleaner and simpler to use and the feedback we’ve had from customers that they absolutely love it, compared to Magento. One of the phrases we used to always use was that WordPress was a really great content management system. And sort of average ecommerce. And Magento was a really great e commerce and a really bad content management system. I think as the years have gone on WordPress is really caught up on the E commerce element. So it’s now a great content manager. And also we very good ecommerce as well. Magento still has its place in terms of bigger e commerce websites and sort of very complicated integration work and big databases. But actually, you know, the customers that we’ve moved over have really benefited from the interface and just the way that WordPress works a lot smoother. And also the technical problems. Yeah, the the support issues that we have on WordPress WooCommerce are virtually nothing compared to the support issues that we had on Magento. So it’s been quite interesting to see the difference, because customers just understand it more, and everything’s in more logical place. So it’s been a really great move for everyone that we have moved over. But I say I work with an agency that really focuses on getting the right platform for the right client. So it always depends on what the client’s ongoing requirements are.
So there’s lots to think about there if you’re still a Magento one and you’re looking for a new tool, and there’s a lot to think about if it’s Magento two that’s right for you or if it’s a WordPress WooCommerce sites and if you are interested in having a demo of how we would migrate you over to a WordPress WooCommerce site, feel free to get in touch on Hello at so marketing.com