Magento announced in 2018 the end of maintenance for Magento 1.x for June 30, 2020. As such, all traders using version 1 are advised to upgrade to the latest versions. The end of support date, which is scheduled for June 2020, is approaching. What are the different options available to you? How to ensure a safe transition? The goal of this article is to examine all the options available to you. We will also explain what end of life means and all the implications.
Does ending Magento 1.x maintenance mean your store will stop working?
The answer to this question is, “No.” In technical terms, the end of maintenance for Magento 1.x means that the application will no longer receive support from the community. In other words, you will no longer receive new temporary security solutions or other updates as of June 30, 2021.
There are many risks associated with outdated and unsupported software. Migrating to Magento 2 will help you resolve future issues. Many websites that are not supported have various bugs and security issues. Here are some of the problems you might encounter.
- First, the end of maintenance of Magento implies that you are facing a lot of security vulnerabilities. In other words, a hacker can easily hack your website with little effort. Also, you might not be able to use some third-party software any longer. For example, most payment gateways require recent system specifications that you can find on outdated versions.
- Second, some features of your website will stop working. As you probably already know, for your website to function properly, it needs to draw on third-party resources. Most of these third-party providers will therefore cease to maintain their extensions or services. Your website or part of your site will eventually be deactivated.
- Third, Google or certain search engines could penalize you for using an unsecured website. If the search engines detect that your website is a gateway for hackers, they will reduce your traffic. As a result, you will lose some of your visitors.
- Finally, you may find yourself losing all of your investment and valuable data if hackers attack you.
What are the alternatives to Magento 1 if the maintenance of Magento ends?
There are many options regarding your e-commerce store. In fact, there are many e-commerce solutions these days that allow you to sell quickly online. If you take the time to do some research, you will find some great tools to fit your business purpose perfectly. Here are some suggestions based on our development skills and experience in the e-commerce market.
Option 1 – Migrate to Magento 2
Magento’s maintenance will be effective on Magento 2. Magento 2 offers many advantages over version 1. Even though the two versions have two completely different frameworks and probably a different layout, there are many features that you won’t find on Magento 1.
The main advantage of Magento 2
Many companies or developers who work with Magento 1 felt that it required too many technical skills. Therefore, when they compare e-commerce platforms, they also rely on these factors. So, before you decide to switch to other e-commerce tools, take the time to educate yourself about these benefits. Magento 2 is much better than Magento 1 in terms of maintenance. Here are some of the benefits:
There is a marked performance improvement, and Magento 2 is 20% faster than Magento 1.
I have had the opportunity to work on many Magento 1 websites, and the load times and performance were very high. I was amazed at how fast Magento 2 was. For an e-commerce store, performance plays a crucial role in SEO.
It’s easier to integrate and develop.
Unlike Magento 1, which required a higher amount of manual or backend manipulation, Magento 2 offers an easier way for developers. You can easily use a command-line interface or configuration functions to install features while validating Magento standard compliance.
The ordering process was made easy.
Magento 2’s payment process is quite straightforward compared to Magento 1. In fact, for Magento 1, unless they get an extension, users will need to complete six steps to complete a transaction. While in Magento 2, there are only two steps. In other words, with Magento 2, you increase your chances of making more sales.
The administration interface is simpler and User-friendly.
The Magento 2 admin interface is more user-friendly and well-designed. Thus, any non-technical user can easily understand and use it.
Managing the mobile aspect is easier.
Magento 2, by default, includes Bootstrap features that improve the responsiveness of your store. As you probably already know, over 70% of internet users browse on mobile devices and tablets. This is why integrating functions adapted to mobile phones into an e-commerce tool is a way to improve your website’s responsiveness.
There is drag and drop functionality.
The latest version of Magento 2 to start integrating the tool to generate the pages. This will allow you to create pages more easily and have the design configured as you wish without needing a developer.
Other features of Magento 2
There are many other features of Magento 2 that you can use to improve your sales; some are:
- You can easily connect to marketplaces like Amazon, Google Shopping.
- Other features can help you automate some of your processes—for example, email marketing software or cart automation abandonment.
What are the main changes from Magento 1 to Magento 2?
Some tables in the Magento 2 database are similar to those in Magento 1, but there are many changes to be aware of. Migrating then means moving your data from the other database to the new one, moving your theme (if you want), extension, and other custom characteristics. Here’s what you need to do to migrate properly:
Take an inventory of all the features you need to migrate.
For any website using a CMS, there are basic functionality and custom functionality. The basic functions are those which are supplied with the software without additional extension. Custom features, you add them yourself to improve your store. Magento provides an easy way to move basic functionality using the migration tool Data. As for your custom features, you can see them either with your third-party vendors or with your developers. If your custom feature providers have no equivalent in Magento 2, you can either create new ones, should look for similar features in Magento Marketplace. Once you have done that, you can now proceed to the appropriate migration process.
The migration process from Magento 1 to Magento 2
- Build a new store using Magento 2. A new store involves installing Magento on your server (if you are looking for the version open-source) or creating an account on the platform Magento Commerce.
- Install the Data Migration Tool and start migrating your core functionality. As mentioned above, the data migration tool can only help you migrate basic Magento functionality.
- Migrate your theme from Magento 1 to Magento 2 and adjust UI changes.
- Update your data accordingly. To learn more about Magento 2, click here.
- Update your custom features. Once the migration is complete, you will need to update your custom features with the equivalent in Magento 2. You can also add additional features in Magento 2 to take full advantage of the new version.
Although Magento maintenance from Magento will no longer be available under Magento 1, Magento 2 can be a good alternative.
Option 2 – Go for Shopify
Shopify offers many benefits for growing online quickly. One of the great things about Shopify is that you don’t need any technical skills to run your store. Additionally, Shopify’s business model seems to suit a growing number of e-commerce owners. Below are some benefits of Shopify.
- Over 800,000 people around the world use Shopify for their e-commerce.
- The annual average growth is over 126%.
- Over 427,676 websites use Shopify,
- Five thousand four hundred businesses trust Shopify Plus.
- 2018 revenues amount to $1.073 billion.
- According to Shopify, they made over 1.5 billion sales on Black Friday of 2018. In other words, customers earned up to $870,000 per minute.
Here are some differences between Magento and Shopify
Cost is something no business can ignore, especially in the early days when trying to stabilize your business. Magento is based on an open-source platform, so that you can get the community edition for free. It would help if you defined your hosting and your domain name.
Another feature that you should look for in your e-commerce platform is how it aligns with your marketing strategies. Magento offers strong SEO features with user-friendly URLs, site mapping, and Google Content API, but Magento doesn’t give you built-in social media features. You can add apps to make your Magento site user-friendly. When it comes to built-in promotion options, Magento wins thanks to its countless features like up-selling, promotional prices, flexible coupons, related products, free shipping, product bundling, etc.
Shopify doesn’t offer much SEO flexibility but gives you the basics with robots.txt and “sitemap.xml” files. It is most popular for its social media capabilities, which allow you to sell directly on Facebook and create scalable pins on Pinterest. Built-in promotions include coupon and discount codes. You can also find other solutions for promotions in the app store.
Shopify’s software is useful for managing your physical store inventory as well as the online store. The e-commerce platform has capabilities to help you sell on major social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. Besides, it also has a PoS (Point of Sale) solution for managing your in-store inventory.
As a store owner, you can customize your Magento store however you want. You can integrate multiple channels as well as online portals that you consider ideal for growing your business. Several extensions are available in the market to help you customize your inventory database to suit your needs. The advantage of working with Magento is that it offers custom integrations. It is useful when looking to deliver unique personalized offers to your customers based on their purchase history.
Shopify provides 24/7 customer support and also offers dedicated and community support. It definitely has some advantages over Magento, especially for small businesses requiring constant support for updates and security fixes.
On the other hand, Magento relies entirely on community support so that no service representative can answer your one-on-one questions. You will need to post a question on the community forums or search for an earlier answer to a similar question for any issues.
If you are a small business, your e-commerce store’s user interface significantly reflects how you can manage your store. If you are looking for a less complicated admin interface, Shopify is better for you. Daily functions, like adding and modifying products, managing categories, adding modules, etc., are easy to use in Shopify and can be done without much technical expertise.
Although flexible, Magento is more complex, as there are many more functions built into the administration section. You can embark on this adventure if you have a larger product portfolio and the resources to handle the technical part.
It’s easier to extend your store using one of the extensions than if you have a Shopify store.
The Shopify app store works for you if you don’t need additional integrations for your store, but it still falls short of matching Magento in terms of the number of apps available and various themes.
Please read this article, Magento and Shopify, for more information.
Option 3 – Switch to WooCommerce
WooCommerce is also another powerful WordPress-powered e-commerce site. As you probably know, WordPress is the most popular CMS for the website. Below are some benefits of WooCommerce.
Other options to consider – PrestaShop, BigCommerce, OpenCart.
There are many other CMS that you can use for your online store. These include PrestaShop, BigCommerce, and OpenCart. Note that each tool has its advantages and disadvantages. If you need help choosing the right tool for your business, you can contact us.
Conclusion and final remarks
The end of maintenance of Magento 1.x may have an impact on the course of your online activities. To continue running your e-commerce business, you may need a robust tool that will best suit your business goal. Whatever your experience with Magento 1, you will definitely enjoy using Magento 2. However, if you want to switch to other software, you also have various tools at your disposal. The end of maintenance for Magento 1.x could cause several developers to lose interest in it. That said, many of your features will be defective as other aspects of the site advance.