Change can be scary. No matter how sure you are that you’re doing the right thing, there’s always that voice in your head that likes to throw ‘what ifs’ out there. For some, it feels too much like a risk, so they stop. They refuse to switch things up ‘just in case…’. If all we’re talking about here is swapping your Coco Pops for porridge as part of a newfound interest in taking better care of yourself, I’d simply encourage you to do what makes you happy. If everything else in your life is pretty much OK, and the sweet cereal isn’t having a negative effect, then why deprive yourself of something that brings you joy?

In business though, if we don’t seriously re-assess what we do and how we do it on a regular basis, we could miss opportunities to grow. Everything you do has to somehow add value to your business, whether that be the types of paper you use when snail-mailing correspondence or the phone and internet services you use in the office. How about the new purchase you were considering? Whether you take the car or the train to your next meeting? How you dispose of waste or any recycling processes you have in place? In some form or another, they have to work for you and your business by streamlining your processes, saving money, improving your profit margin, or making your business more sustainable (economically and environmentally).

This is one of a number of reasons why businesses migrate to Magento. Platforms they’ve been using for a while may be holding them back, whereas Magento ecommerce websites are scalable, powerful, adaptable, and reliable. A Magento 2 website aims to help businesses boost sales, attract more traffic, and save time with its many features. But how do you plan for the move? Here’s an outline of the process and what you could expect from your Magento developer.

Prepare for migration:

Stage 1 – Contact an experienced Magento web developer or designer to help. When making important business decisions, you need someone who knows what they’re doing to help you make the most of any change. The Chosen One should make the whole process much less stressful, with clear guidance on what is required from you, as well as providing regular updates on where they’re at along the way. Check out their portfolio or testimonials, have a look at what skills they talk about, then discuss what you want or need with them.

Stage 2 – When I’m contacted about a project, I ask my client to develop a brief that we can go through to assess what they want the website to do, what they’d like to achieve, and which modules are needed to ensure a smooth migration.

Stage 3 – As a Magento designer, I expect that the brief would also assist with the look and feel of the website, ranging from colour scheme, typography, images, layout options, and so forth. The expected time scale is around 2 – 3 weeks.

Stage 4 – Once the design elements are in place, I switch to my Magento developer hat and begin to build the backbone of the website based on the brief. The time scale is dependent upon the level of customisation. Simple packages are the quickest options but add-ons and a lot of personalised details would naturally increase the length of time needed to be spent on the project. The average time spent on the development of the website is around 4 – 6 weeks to completion.

Data transfer

Once the design and development of the new website is approved, I migrate the data from the old system to the new Magento 2 website. This includes products and product categories, purchase history, static pages, customer purchase history, promotions, and current purchase orders.

Testing

Once everything is ready and raring to go, I do extensive tests to make sure all is working as it should. The website will only go live when my client and I are happy that it is ready to launch.

Hosting

An important point to note is that all websites must call someplace home. This is what we refer to as ‘hosting’ which means that it occupies a suitable space on a server. The cost and size of this space is determined by the expected amount of traffic (website visitors), as well as the required amount of disk space, email and FTP accounts, etc. I have both shared hosting (suitable for smaller, less frequently visited websites) and dedicated hosting options available.

Ongoing support

Given the speed of change in the virtual world, it is so important to ensure that updates and general website maintenance is carried out regularly to prevent your website from becoming vulnerable to attack. The best and most cost-effective way to do this is to invest in a website maintenance package which you can read more about here.