Article

Jan Guardian
Jan Guardian 17 September 2020
Categories B2B, Ecommerce, Technology

How to Work With Magento Migration Vendors: A Guide for Business Owners

Moving out is always a major headache whether it concerns a house or an online business. Bidding farewell to Magento 1 last month, much less than half of its users have packed their bags to settle at Magento 2. Why? Perhaps because of the uncertainty of further moves. But with an online ecommerce business running, risking and sampling seem like an integral part of an entrepreneur’s daily routine. Just like any other migration, moving from good old Magento 1 to its updated Magento 2 is not deprived of important details to have in mind to avoid complications and save a good deal of nervous cells. But not only yours. There are some other key people involved in the process of Magento migration.

Magento Migration Vendors: Expectations and Reality

Migrating to another platform even if it preserves the core principles you’ve got used to is challenging. It feels like being thrown into the water not knowing how to swim. But in fact, migration is not that scary as one can imagine if you’ve enlisted a reliable migration vendor. 

Contrary to the common image of a vendor as a company that comes to rescue any bug at a moment’s notice, it is a professional service that doesn’t have to do more than you’d paid for. The process of communication between online-shop owners and migration vendors is not something like a talk between a child and a parent. Be ready for businesslike cooperation, minding after-hours, and respecting deals. Having exaggerated expectations about Magento 2 migration vendors is of no use, so here’s what this cooperation is really like.

Bare Truth About Migration Vendors

  • Do not expect full service unless you’ve paid for it. I mean, no one would do a job for free instead of making money
  • Migration vendors are also people, so be ready to respect their working schedule
  • 24/7 connection and quick feedback are available only after purchasing the package concerned
  • You are expected to do your part of the cooperation on time. If not, try to avoid knocking at a migration vendor’s door in the middle of the night

Breaking Down Magento 2 Migration Myths

Diving into the migration process without getting familiar with all the basic stages and pitfalls is not the best thing to do. Because the way you can imagine an ecommerce platform changing almost certainly does not correspond to the actual thing awaiting you.

Not a Twin

Moving to Magento 2 is more complicated than pressing Ctrl+C, Ctrl+V. The new platform has its own logic and unique architecture that doesn’t allow you to use old themes or extensions. What remains untouched while migrating is your data, but all the other options will not stay with you. So be ready to create an upgraded version of your store together with a vendor.

Learn to Say Goodbye

As Magento 2 has its own platform architecture and functional features, your old extensions won’t be supported at the new site. Consequently, you can either shed a tear and move forward without one or consider buying a Magento 2 extension analog. Sometimes saying goodbye to “good old”, you can find out something “absolutely fantastic new”.

You Can’t Do Without a New Design

If you’ve reached this point, you’ve already been deprived of the illusion of saving and transporting your entire design from Magento 1 to Magento 2. Hiring a web-designer to set up a brand new customized store will probably hit the pocket, but laying the new basis of a venture is not the thing to save on. Think of it as an opportunity not only to scale up your business on the whole but also fresh up your store’s look and enhance the customer shopping experience. So in order to secure your business from major issues, be ready to invest in the bedrock.

There’s Always Room for Risks

Project time evaluation is essential to keep the work going. But Magento migration vendors’ task is literally to create everything from scratch, so deadlines can move in line with unexpected issues that pop up on vendors’ way. The point is not to be hard on the people working on your venture as no one is insured against technical surprises.

In short, before starting migration be sure to get rid of false illusions. The key to productive moving to Magento 2 and transparent cooperation with migration vendors lies in the awareness of basic ecommerce relocation details and is built on common business sense. Although nothing usually happens as expected, immersing into the matter and preserving sensibility is always the right way to start off.

How to Choose a Magento Migration Vendor 

Magento migration vendors are the key people to carry out transportation to Magento 2. So if you expect the deal to go smoothly, make sure to get serious about choosing a professional Magento development company first.

Mind the Presales Impression

Picking up the right vendor fully depends on the presales process. It includes presentation, expert assessment, and that ultimate personal intuition when it comes to making an important choice. If you are pleased with the sufficiency of information, quick feedback, and with the whole working atmosphere—consider yourself lucky to find a great team for making a store transition. But to avoid it becoming too lengthy and uncertain, get a clear-cut project structure from your vendor. A substantive plan with specified deadlines and prices increases your chances of a successful and timely end of the project.

Background Matters

Looking through the working vendor’s case studies is another crucial step. The more migration projects one has had—the better. In such a way you’ll be secured from major issues like missing deadlines, unexpected roadblocks, and project chaos. Broad experience, calmness, consistency, and systematicity are what you’re looking for. 

Mind the Communication 

Apart from case studies, clients’ references may bear valuable information about a Magento migration vendor’s customer service. Efficient feedback is one of the key points to consider while choosing a migration vendor. A venture’s transportation to the renewed platform will certainly be accompanied by millions of questions, answers, rechecks, and adjustings. Thus in the references, you will get a clearer image of the level of customer care that is a distinctive feature of professionalism. So make sure that you are satisfied with previous clients’ comments before making the final choice.

A Miser Pays Twice

When hiring a vendor, the price list really matters. The perfect duo of price and quality is a rare phenomenon, but the migration vendors market is not a narrow one anyway. However, when it comes to the very core of your e-store, economizing is not the option. Trying to move to Magento 2 without spending a proper sum is like buying an iPhone at an appealing price—desirable but will certainly have implications. So it is better to invest once than spend for endless refurbishings. 

Looks Like Passion

Whatever job you do, without passion it is close to impossible to get out of those 50% middle-of-the-road specialists. Making a transition as you already know is more than copying files to Magento 2. It requires creativity, personal involvement and interest. Without these, you are unlikely to get a satisfying version of your beloved e-store. So look for a Magento migration vendor who shines with enthusiasm.

Objectiveness is a Rarity 

The prime rule of any business is that the client is always right. But in reality, few people know what they are looking for and hopelessly seek advice, bumping against the wall of yes-sayers. So if a vendor is capable of saying “no” and giving you valuable practical recommendations, stick to them and never let go (or at least till the end of the project).

Choosing a migration vendor team is not the easiest task to do. However, testing the presales communication, feedback speed and efficiency, you may be ensured that the project won’t bring any nasty surprises. 

How to Work With a Migration Vendor

Experience shows that vendor-customer cooperation is still an open field. So in order to avoid any misunderstandings mind a couple of tips to help you build a partnership relationship with a vendor.

You Are Not the Only Client

Magento migration vendors have recently become a hot item. With the rush for e-store moving, the number of projects vendors get is sometimes overwhelming. Here you should keep in mind that a vendor is not only your supporter. So to keep things in line, work out a precise schedule of communication,  Q&A time, pre-, mid-term and final calls, and all the other possible details. Unless you’ve bought full package support, make sure to negotiate in advance the time for updates and bugs removal not to waste nerves trying to DM a vendor in all existing social media.

Time is Money

Harsh but true. Nowadays you would hardly find a specialist in any field giving consultations for free. Not only time but the information is also money. In case of making a store transition, you need quite a lot of advice and proper explanations. So do not be surprised if your Magento migration vendor bills you. It’s not personal, only business.

Keep in Touch

Feels like you’ve already heard this a couple of times, but here it is once again. While working on the migration project you are to become true partners with a vendor. It means upholding the contact, suggesting ideas, discussing problems, and solving them together. A vendor doesn’t have to be the only moving force of the deal, so take the lead, set up calls, be proactive.

In Other Words

The rise of Magento 2 has given all the loyal Magento 1 followers a hard time. However, the pace of the tech world development doesn’t leave any chance of surprise by such a sudden switch. The process of platform migration is full of potholes and misconceptions but with the competent approach and necessary knowledge, Magento migration will go so smoothly that you won’t be afraid of migrating to Magento 3 as soon as its ancestor sees the end of life.

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