Cart to Cart Migration – Shopify to Magento2

Migrating from One eCommerce Platform to Another

It happens sometimes that clients realize, that they need to migrate their eCommerce solution to another platform. The reasons might differ:

  • The client needs to avoid a subscription cost, like in Shopify.
  • The client needs more security, as in migrating from WooComm to Shopify or Magento.
  • A simple fad, or a redesign fancy.
  • A complete re-innovation of the website and the admin panel.
  • The existing method is simply outdated, like Shop Factory.

In such cases, the orders of the existing website, the continuous incoming orders are more risky to migrate than the catalog itself. For larger catalogs, its a huge problem, and might take different approaches to solve rather than one single scripted approach.

We’ve handled two such cases:

  • Shop Factory to WooCommerce
  • Shopify to Magento2.

Here, we speak, primarily of the second, and also of the first.


Challenges In Migration By Percentage

  • Composite Products & Bundles Handled Differently Accross CMSes
  • Running Incoming Orders To Be Handled With Minimum Downtime
  • Database Structure In General and its Differences

The challenges discussed above, were just the tip of the ice berg. We take a further look at each.

  • Migrating The Catalog:

    For simple products, it is easy to take a product catalog dump and migrate. It’s true for a smaller business as well. What happens for older websites with huge catalogs? One such case, that I can think of is (pay attention to the number of attributes each product has – it actually resulted in millions of possibilities, when each size had to be migrated)and in such cases, its only possible manually. There are cases, where bundled products need to be migrated like In those cases, individual products are handled through scripted migration, and manual migration takes care of bundled products. Composite Products, such as taking a logo, and keeping it over a T-shirt, are also a challenge, and might pose a situation where we create such products anew.

  • Database Structure In General:

    Since eCommerce, by and large is handled by CMSes, we need to take into consideration factors like existing plugins, and how they translate in another CMS.

  • Order Migration:

    This is by far the most challenging part that I have experienced, because measuring sales are important for a business owner and many clients did not want their existing orders to not be visualised in the new CMS. For some however, we just drew the line, gave the existing orders in an excel, and migrated only the previous week’s orders. Cases differ, so do solutions.

The solution in most cases, is to divide the lifecycle of the migrated product into phases, comfortable spaced for allowing rigorous regression. We also paid close attention to:

  • Backup Planning:

    Poorly planned backups can, in such cases create unforeseen havocs, and to avoid those, we created a detailed backup script, that would email the day’s orders to the admin, for future use, along with a consolidated report generation of all orders, and stats on the day when the site was ready for migration.

  • Product Types and Database Handling:

    Database Caching, Connection Pooling, Database Clustering, Query Optimization and many other factors amounted to database differences across CMSes. As explained in challenges, composite products, bundles and more detailed product types with millions of attributes, manual uploading of products is better, faster and more productive, than thinking through a process for each. For instance, WooCommerce queries take a hit on the database, because of the plugin structure, and making sure that it doesn’t happen when the user migrates from WooCommerce to Shopify was part of our solution, along with transparent reports for the same.

  • Server Optimizing Journey:

    CMSes, their servers and security are sometimes handled differently for different platforms. To be able to monitor performance, and bring it at par, or better than the previous solution is our main motto. For instance, WooComm would do well on an older player like Bluehost, with shared hosting as well. For a client who is considering migration, we need to understand reasons such as difference in expected traffic, and hence suggest servers like Nexcess for Magento hosting. I recommend AWS only in cases of extreme traffic, and high end server demands. Many proffesionals can take a different take on server choice. To consider backups, code security through poopular solutions like Code Guard is also part of the deal.

The result is a along term framework that the client is happy to use.

  • Scalable:

    After the migration, future scalability is always easy, at least when our team handles it.

  • Consistency With The Existing Platform:

    All challenges having met, the solution becomes a robust platform, and the owner can deal with the sales, instead of nuances of tech.

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