If you’re running an ecommerce site on Magento 1, you should be aware by now that support for the long-running platform will finally be coming to an end in June 2020. Although websites on Magento 1.x will still be accessible and used by merchants, developers and customers, there will no longer be any official support offered by Magento.
As the end of life date draws closer, many merchants who have been running Magento 1 have already started re-platforming to Magento 2 or alternative ecommerce platforms to ensure that their transactions aren’t affected.
Whilst there isn’t a set day yet, the official end of life date given by Magento is June 2020. This was confirmed by Magento on their official website and social media channels following Magento Europe 2018.
With over 200,000 Magento sites currently operating, there’s a huge onus on merchants to make a decision on re-platforming in good time to ensure the security of their data and ability to carry on trading isn’t compromised.
After June 2020, there’ll be no further support, security patches or updates for Magento 1 websites. There will also no longer be any new functionalities or extensions released to allow merchants to keep up to date with the latest requirements both in terms of security and customer requirements.
Whilst there is a lot of work involved in migrating your website, the opportunities that Magento 2 offers retailers cannot be understated and business owners shouldn’t allow too much time to pass before making a decision on moving away from Magento 1.
If you’re yet to plan your next steps after Magento 1, then now is the time to get started.
The writing has been on the wall for Magento 1 for over two years now as Magento first announced in early 2017 that support for Magento 1 would be coming to an end in November 2018.
After much consternation in the Magento community, the final end of life date was pushed back by another 18 months or so to June 2020 to allow retailers to get their house in order and plan their next steps.
As such, from June 2020 any merchant who decides to remain on Magento 1 will no longer receive any further support, will not be able to take advantage of further developments of the platform and may be at risk of security breaches as no updates and patches will be released.
Many merchants have already made the decision to move away from Magento 1 before end of life, whether that’s to take advantage of the benefits of Magento 2 or to move to an alternative platform.
For those retailers looking to delay their decision, or even to remain on Magento 1 for the foreseeable future then the risks and ramifications of doing so should be considered to help expedite the decision-making process – you may find the cons outweigh the pros.
Patch updates for both Magento 1 Community and Enterprise editions will cease as of June 2020. This means that there will be no protection for your site against vulnerabilities that are discovered after this time.
This not only puts your website at risk of being compromised by malicious activity but also puts your customers’ data at risk of falling into the wrong hands, meaning you could fall foul of data protection legislation.
Given that the main focus for developers in the community will be on optimising modules and plugins for Magento 2, modules built specifically for Magento 1 may be unsupported and become out of date.
If your website relies on modules in order to transact and perform efficiently, then you will quickly start to see performance issues arise. In addition, you might also experience security risks from vulnerabilities discovered in your outdated modules.
Delaying your decision to move away from Magento 1 might leave you with fewer options in terms of developers that are available to work on your project.
The most in-demand agencies will already have clients on their books helping them migrate from Magento 1 to Magento 2 well in advance of the end of life date. Some agencies may also opt to avoid rescuing problematic Magento 1 sites, allowing their developers to gain more experience on Magento 2 instead.
Most merchants running Magento 1 will most likely have an existing Magento agency looking after their website; running health checks and implementing security patches and module upgrades when required.
If you decide to forgo migrating away from Magento 1 after June 2020 then chances are that your agency will no longer maintain or host your website as it may become a liability to them.
Therefore, your website then becomes your responsibility for keeping secure and updated – which is made even more difficult as there are no longer any official updates available.
A good migration doesn’t happen overnight, with most Magento 1 to Magento 2 migrations taking on average between 3 and 6 months to complete successfully, depending on the complexity of your website’s functionality and the depth of your product catalogue.
When you add the aforementioned shortage of available developers, along with trends in seasonal sales and peak periods such as Black Friday and Christmas, time is most definitely a crucial factor when considering re-platforming your website.
Magento has learned a lot from over 10 years of being one of the most powerful ecommerce platforms on the market, and these practices have been liberally applied and adapted into Magento 2.
On the whole, Magento 2 is a far more powerful ecommerce platform that can provide better performance and security and is easier for merchants to manage design, product catalogues and updates.
Customers, on the other hand, benefit from a well-rounded omnichannel experience, mobile-first design, improved speed and functionality to assist with carrying out transactions with ease, resulting in a higher rate of conversion than Magento 1.
Migrating from Magento 1 to Magento 2 is not always a straightforward decision, as there are multiple variables in play to ensure that you make the best choice for your business.
Whilst the two platforms fall under the same parent company and the same name, it’s important to remember that Magento 1 and Magento 2 are completely separate systems. So whilst the migration may be slightly more straightforward than moving to another platform, there are still risks to consider.
The costs involved in hiring an agency, the amount of time required to implement a move to a new platform, and the resources required on your side to help out all while carrying out your day-to-day operations can add up quickly.
Your first step is to assess your businesses needs. Moving up to Magento 2 can be a large financial investment, therefore if you can justify the costs involved to benefit from such a powerful ecommerce platform then it’s time to find an agency to help you realise your goals.
Your Magento agency should offer a wide range of skills, from solution specialists who can quantify your business goals into a seamless on-site experience, designers and front enders with an eye for design and experienced backend developers who can ensure your website functions flawlessly.
Given the breadth and variance of business sizes using Magento 1, not all merchants will be able to scale up and some might benefit from exploring a more economical option, such as migrating to WooCommerce.
For over 23 years iWeb have been creating ecommerce solutions for hundreds of businesses to transform the way they sell online.
As a Magento Enterprise Solution Partner, we have over 40 certifications across our highly experienced team, from certified backend developers to solution specialists who can help you make the most of your Magento 2 store.
If you’re ready to make the move to Magento 2, get in touch. We’ll start with an audit of your site, find out what’s not working and put a plan in place to get you to where you want to be.