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When Should I Make the Move to Magento 2? Our Guest Post for Brightpearl

The upgrade to one of the world’s biggest eCommerce platforms Magento, was released at the end of 2015, and whilst uptake to migrate has been positive from the beginning, some retailers are still asking, is it worth it?

After its announcement way back in 2010, eBay, the then owners of Magento, promised a complete overhaul of the system, with massive advantages, stating their ambition; “ to make the best new generation eCommerce platform” – there was huge anticipation surrounding the release, with expectations sky high. With promises of improved performance and speed, increased scalability and all-round experience for customers, 2 years in it’s time to ask whether it was worth all the fuss.

Our Magento 2 Journey

Being amongst only a few UK agencies with Magento Enterprise Solution Partner status, we feel we can comfortably say, we’re Magento experts.
We’re not afraid of learning new approaches, platforms, softwares, so long as we know there’ll be payback for the user. And with Magento 2, from the outset, we were convinced it was just that.

In fact, looking back, to say that Magento 2 is an improvement from Magento 1 could be considered a massive understatement; it has been built from the ground-up to improve leaps and bounds on Magento 1. The new features and performance capabilities really are vast, including: an improved technology stack, a smoother customisation process and far easier external integrations. Magento 2 is more efficient, more user-friendly all-round, and more easily scalable for business growth and success.

Since its release, we’ve had many retailers asking us if they should upgrade – and, if so, why? And when? Now with most of our clients on Magento 2, we’ve a great bank of experience from which to answer from. Our clients who’ve made the change, have definitely reaped these rewards amongst others:

Improved performance: Magento 2 officially supports latest PHP versions. Those versions include new security fixes and improvements that directly impact speed. On the server’s side, there is now the ability to use Varnish caching, so store owners won’t have to install a third party’s module for it.

Magento 2 has minimised and bundled JavaScript. And there’s image compression too. It’s now possible to optimize images directly on server using built in tools, a task that has to be done manually using Magento 1.

Better SEO: SEO lets marketers control the way Google and other search engines display results from their sites and to determine the behaviour of each of their website’s’ ‘Search’ function. Here are the Magento 2 ingredients for better SEO:

  • URL rewrites
  • keywords
  • metadata
  • canonical URLs
  • site map customization

Improved indexing: Indexing is the way Magento system transforms merchant data, such as prices, users, stores, etc. by creating index tables and keeping them updated to boost the query speed and improve the performance of the online store. The new default indexers in Magento 2 include all of the functionality from before, but the difference is that they come with more efficient updates and have been improved to speed up the query performance.

Responsiveness:  The ways consumers shop and interact with brands has been totally transformed in recent years by mobile. Magento 1 was said to be often difficult to administer on mobile devices and today that’s not good enough. Thanks to a new and improved interface you can now use either device to manage your Magento store effectively. Besides the obvious benefits for customers, it also provides a much better look and feel on mobile and tablet devices, making shopping mobile on Magento 2 easier, faster and more appealing altogether.

And, then, there’s the deprecation of Magento 1

Magento 1 will continue to be officially supported with security issues patched until November 2018, although no new features will be added. This means that if you are making major changes to your Magento store, you should seriously consider upgrading to Magento 2.

If you’re building a brand new eCommerce website, or you’re thinking about planning  to migrate to a different platform, then now’s certainly the time to opt for Magento 2. If you’re currently using Magento 1, now is the safest time there’s been to make the switch.

 

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jamie@wearejh.com or +44(0)115 933 8784