Why You Should Migrate Your Online Store from Magento to Shopify
Despite Magento being one of the leading eCommerce platforms for well over a decade, a growing number of business owners are migrating their online stores from Magento to Shopify.
But why exactly is this happening?
In this article, we’ll explore why you should migrate your Magento online store over to Shopify and a few key things to keep in mind if you do.
Why Do I Need to Migrate from Magento?
To start, let’s address why you need to migrate from Magento in the first place.
Magento 1 End-Of-Life (EOL)
After Adobe’s purchase of Magento in 2018, they announced that they would stop supporting Magento 1, and on the 30th June 2020, Magento 1 officially became obsolete.
This is a problem for business owners who have a Magento 1 online store for a few reasons. First and foremost, they’ll be no additional patches and updates released for it, so you’ll start to notice your store’s performance steadily suffer over time – and, worse still, so will your visitors.
More worryingly, however, is that this also means they’ll be no more security updates, which leaves all your store’s data – including your customers’ private details - exposed and vulnerable to hackers.
The Cost and Complexity of Magento 2
Now, you’d think that Magento 1’s EOL wouldn’t be much of an issue as all the merchants who use it could simply upgrade to Magento 2, right? But that’s not the case.
Because Magento 2 utilises a different database and architecture to Magento 1, migrating to Magento 2 is more of a replatform than an upgrade. Worse still, Magento 2’s design makes a store migration an involved and complicated process with a lot of room for error. Consequently, a Magento migration can take as long as 6 – 12 months, depending on the size of your store. As this extended timeline translates into more coding hours, migrating to Magento 2 can be very costly indeed.
Why Should I Migrate to Shopify?
Now that we’ve established why lots of store owners are migrating from Magento, the question is, why are they migrating to Shopify in particular? To answer this, let’s look at some of the main benefits of switching to Shopify, which can be divided into three categories: cost, performance and ease of use.
Lower Cost of Migration
While moving your online store to Magento 2 typically takes 6 -12 months, you can be up and running on Shopify in 6 – 8 weeks. This makes the cost of migration significantly lower, leaving you with more money to invest in other areas of your business.
Lower Running Costs
As well as your store migration costing a lot less, once you’ve made the move to Shopify, your store will also cost less to operate. Between saving on hosting, maintenance, additional functionality, and ongoing development costs, it’s far more economical to run your online store on Shopify.
Rapid Site Speed
Shopify is renowned for its speed so your online store will benefit from super-quick loading times. This is because Shopify is a cloud-based eCommerce and host their stores themselves, giving them complete control of the performance of their servers. This includes heavy investment in their content delivery network (CDN): a large network of servers distributed across the globe that ensures your store loads quickly for your customers, wherever they happen to live.
A significant benefit of a faster-loading store is a lower bounce rate, which aids your SEO efforts. Because your store loads quickly, visitors won’t immediately hit ‘back’ on their browsers to return to their search results, as they’re likely to do on a slow site. This signals to search engines that your store is relevant to the searched keywords, which helps to boost your ranking.
Better still, with the announcement of Google’s page experience update, website speed has become an even more important factor in your store’s search engine ranking. This means that migrating to Shopify gives you a distinct advantage over your slower-loading competition.
Because Shopify are responsible for their servers, they’re also in control of each store’s security. As a result, every Shopify store is fully PCI-DSS-compliant as standard, which guarantees that all your product and customer data is completely safe and secure.
With Shopify, you’re not forced to anticipate demand and upgrade your servers and back-end architecture ahead of time. Instead, you have unlimited bandwidth and online storage, backed up by Shopify’s powerful CDN, to handle sudden surges in traffic.
Easy to Use
Customisable, Mobile-Responsive Themes
Shopify features dozens of eye-catching, functional themes for your store, some of which are free while others are available at low prices. Better still, it’s easy to customise each theme according to your branding and business needs. Plus, Shopify’s admin interface is intuitive and user-friendly, which makes managing every aspect of your store straightforward.
Best of all, Shopify’s themes are mobile-responsive, which is highly beneficial for two reasons. Firstly, the number of people who mainly access the internet through a mobile device is increasing, so you’ll be future-proofing your store. Secondly, Google has started to rank and index the mobile version of sites, so stores that are mobile-responsive are going to rank better – which Is great for your SEO.
Apps and Integration
Shopify has a huge collection of apps for increasing your store’s functionality as your business grows. Plus, it features a large number of pre-built integrations for software that you may use within your business, including email clients, payments, marketing, inventory, and CRM, PIM, and ERP software.
Because Shopify is a fully-hosted eCommerce platform, it means you no longer have to arrange or configure your own hosting, as with self-managed platforms. Plus, with 99.99% uptime, you don’t have to worry about your site going down.
Considerations When Migrating from Shopify to Magento
With any online store migration, it’s important to plan carefully and account for differences between platforms. You want the transition to be as seamless as possible to avoid your store going down, pages being inaccessible, or it affecting your customers’ shopping experience in any way. Migrating from Shopify to Magento is no different, so here are some of the things to be aware of.
Magento and Shopify use different URL structures so it’s crucial to carefully map out and redirect each page from your current setup in the new Shopify URL architecture. You’ll also need to thoroughly test each new URL and page redirect to make sure they all work as expected. Failing to do this can compromise both your store’s reputation and any SEO value you’ve amassed over time.
Differences in the two platform’s data structure and architecture means that you’ll have to pay close attention to your customer and product data to ensure it was migrated across correctly and the corresponding fields match.
Shopify has a default set of core fields that covers the most important pieces of data, but other elements and attributes may need to be stored using Shopify’s system of tags and metafields. Then, as with your page URLs, you’ll need to meticulously check all the data has been migrated across as intended and each field lines up.
If you cater to customers from different countries on your Magento store, you’ll have two options when migrating your store to Shopify:
- Operating a single store with multi-currency support
- Operating multiple stores, with a separate instance per country or region.
There are benefits and drawbacks to each approach and the best course of action will depend on your business’ individual circumstances – namely what proportion of your customer base is located abroad and the number of countries you ship to.
Fortunately, you don’t have to do it alone…
There’s no doubt that moving eCommerce platforms is time-consuming and complicated - and that’s without having to continue to run your business at the same time.
Here at Pear Digital, as one of the UK’s leading Shopify Expert Agencies, we have extensive experience in helping online retailers make the (potentially problematic) transition from Magento to Shopify. We’ll carefully plan out and implement every aspect of your Shopify migration for you so you’re free to focus on what you do best – running and growing your business.
- Preserving your hard-earned SEO ranking by meticulously checking every URL and redirect
- Making sure every single piece of product and customer data is fully migrated across and appears exactly as it does in your existing store
- Advising you on the best setup if you sell internationally.
Alternatively. if you’d like to discuss migrating your online store from Magento to Shopify, get in touch and we’d be happy to help.