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If you have a Magento 1 site, there’s every chance that you’re considering upgrading to Magento 2. Magento 2 is an ecommerce platform that is used by leading brands all over the world. Offering a host of benefits to companies operating within a broad spectrum of industries, Magento 2 represents the future. If you’re looking to move from Magento 1 to Magento 2, but you’re not sure of the benefits or how to go about updating your site, here’s a useful guide to why businesses should upgrade their Magento site today.

What exactly is Magento 2?

If you have a Magento 1 store, you may be aware of the introduction of Magento 2. Launched in 2015, Magento 2 is a new and improved version of Magento 1, which is used by approximately 25% of businesses. There are three versions of Magento 2, which are designed to cater for all businesses. From startups and small companies to large-scale operations, you can choose from open source, enterprise and enterprise cloud editions. Open source, which is a free platform, is the most popular choice for small businesses and new ventures.

One of the key developments for businesses using Magento 2 is the improvement in user experience. Magento 1 was lauded for its flexibility, but as this became the focal point for developers, user-friendliness became an issue. Magento 1 also lagged behind other platforms in terms of the features it offered, and some users also complained about operating speeds. Magento 2 was introduced to offer solutions to issues raised by Magento 1 users, and also to improve the package on offer to businesses.

Why should your business upgrade to Magento 2?

Magento 2 offers an array of benefits for businesses of all sizes. Designed to eliminate flaws and offer more, Magento 2 provides the following key features:

  • Increased speed and improved performance

When compared to Magento 1, Magento 2 runs around 20% faster. Increased speed improves user experience and elevates lead conversion and search ranking. Magento 2 optimises web pages for accelerated loading and it also has faster load to cart and end to end checkout processes. Research suggests that checkout time is up to 50% swifter than Magento 1.

  • Increased scalability

Magento 2 is more efficient than Magento 1, and it’s also geared towards growth. With Magento 2, you can process almost 40% more orders within an hour than with Magento 1. If you’re on a mission to expand your business and drive sales, this platform will help you cope with increasing demand.

  • Enhanced, streamlined checkout process

When you’re selling online, it’s crucial to make it as easy and stress-free as possible to make a purchase. If the checkout process is time-consuming or convoluted, there’s every chance of losing a sale. Magento 2 offers a slick, streamlined process, which involves just 2 phases. With Magento 1, the buyer has to complete 6 phases before completing the purchase. This sequence has been shortened and simplified, enabling buyers to choose a product and buy it within a matter of seconds. Magento 2 also offers customers the chance to proceed as a guest, rather than spending time registering, and it provides consumers with a purchase overview. The new and improved checkout process is a crucial development, as research suggests that almost 70% of online carts are abandoned.

  • Going mobile

The way people shop is changing, and it has never been more important to move with the times. As a retailer, you want to be able to give customers what they want, and the vast majority of consumers now use their phones to source and buy products. More than 60% of smartphone owners use their phone to shop. Magento 2 is designed for the mobile market, and it provides customers with the chance to shop on the move and complete the process of purchasing products without worrying about slow load times or pages not displaying properly. In addition to mobile-friendly sites, Magento 2 also offers you the opportunity to create apps. Apps make shopping simple and they can also have marketing benefits for your business. The average smartphone user checks their phone more than 80 times a day. Your app is a visual reminder of your brand that will be seen numerous times every single day.

Migrating from Magento 1 to Magento 2

Despite the fact that Magento 2 has been available since 2015, many businesses are still using Magento 1. If you use Magento 1, and you’re looking to migrate to Magento 2, you may have questions about the process and whether you actually need to upgrade your site. Magento 2 offers a broad spectrum of benefits for businesses, but it’s also worth considering that support for Magento 1 will cease in 2020. The reality is that Magento 1 is still very much up and running, but it will eventually become obsolete, and therefore, it’s wise to consider migrating sooner rather than later. With this in mind, how do you go about upgrading to Magento 2?

Considerations for migrating to Magento 2

Before you take the plunge, it’s wise to think about what to expect during the migration phase. Here are some key considerations:

  • Planning your migration: if you’re not an experienced developer, it’s wise to seek expert advice to help you migrate. An agency that has experience in upgrading sites to Magento 2 can take care of the process for you, handling the transfer of customer data and historical orders.
  • Choosing a new theme: it’s not possible to migrate a theme from Magento 1 to Magento 2, so you’ll need to either create a new theme or install a Magento 2 theme for your site.
  • Adding extensions: Magento 1 extensions won’t work on Magento 2. When you migrate, you can create new extensions or buy extensions that are designed to perform specific functions. If you’re moving from Magento 1 to Magento 2, it’s wise to carry out a small-scale audit and see which extensions are the most useful.
  • Testing your new site: once your new site is up and running, it’s beneficial to test everything to check that it is running as expected.
  • Media files: it’s worth noting that media files need to be migrated manually. If you employ a developer to oversee the migration, they will take care of all your files for you.

If you’re a business owner and you’re thinking about upgrading to Magento 2, but you’re unsure how to go about it, or you don’t want to be lumbered with the process of actually migrating from Magento 1 to Magento 2, it’s wise to enlist the help of an experienced agency. An agency with expertise in Magento can take care of the entire process for you. Working with developers will enable you to reap the rewards of your new site faster, give you time to focus on core tasks that underpin the day to day running of the business, and ensure your site is designed to capitalise on emerging and evolving market trends. The aim is to create a better version of your current store and to provide your users with a superior experience and a raft of features, such as quick, hassle-free checkout, which make your store more appealing than others. With experience of working with Magento for over a decade, we can migrate your site, improve customer experience and help you create and convert more leads.

The benefits of migrating from Magento 1 to Magento 2 now

There’s no ruling that dictates that businesses have to upgrade to Magento 2 now, but there are several key benefits to migrating sooner rather than later. Here are some of the most significant advantages:

  • Lower the risk of paying for development work and upgrades twice: if you choose to wait, you may end up paying to develop and update your Magento 1 site and then to migrate to Magento 2.
  • Take advantage of new features: Magento 2 offers a wealth of features that aren’t available on Magento 1. If you upgrade now, you can start taking full advantage of increased functionality and improved user experience.
  • Staying ahead of the curve: with Magento 2, you can provide your customers with benefits that aren’t available on Magento 1. Your site will be more appealing, and you can also maximise your chances of competing with other businesses. If you’re trying to keep up with your rivals, you don’t want to be the last to make the move.
  • Future-proofing: the world is changing, and consumer demands and preferences are evolving. An experienced agency can help you future-proof your site to ensure that you’re one step ahead and that you’re ready to tap into emerging trends.

If you currently have a Magento 1 site, and you’re interested in upgrading to Magento 2, there’s a plethora of reasons to take the plunge. Magento 2 offers enhanced features that provide a better user experience and the opportunity to increase leads and sales. If the thought of undertaking migration is daunting, why not get in touch with us and find out more about how we could help you? We have extensive experience in working with Magento, and we have already helped more than 30 companies migrate to Magento 2. Whether you’re a startup or an established multinational business, we can help to ensure you reap the rewards of Magento 2 with minimal hassle.

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