Why upgrade to Magento 2?
With more than 250,000 stores worldwide, Magento is widely regarded as the eCommerce platform of choice. It’s estimated that nearly 1 in 4 of all eCommerce stores worldwide are built on Magento!
In 2016, Magento released Magento 2, a widely awaited update to Magento 1. At the same time, they also announced that they are likely to stop "official" support for Magento 1 in early 2018, leaving many merchants asking themselves when they should upgrade to Magento 2, and what the benefits are.
There are many pros and cons so here’s a quick guide to the main reasons you should upgrade to Magento 2.
1. Performance and scalability improvements
Simply put, Magento 2 is significantly faster than Magento 1. You can expect a 50% improvement in site speed due to the built-in full page caching and improvements to the overall caching system. The effect is even more significant for eCommerce stores that have a large catalogue of products and/or categories.
Increased speed = faster page loads, and with fast page load times, comes increased conversion rates, which ultimately means more revenue from the same traffic for your organisation. It will also mean fewer frustrated customers and less enquiries for your customer services team.
2. Better frontend usability
Magento 2 ships with a new, fully responsive theme - significant effort has been placed on improving the user experience, especially during checkout.
Although any respectable merchant is likely to build their own theme so that it sits within the wider brand, you should aim to keep these improvements and principles in place to ensure your customers enjoy a better experience across all device types - ultimately leading to higher conversion rates again. It will also help to keep development costs down if you build upon the great foundations Magento have created for you.
3. Better administration experience
The new Magento 2 administrator interface, whilst taking time to get used to, is vastly improved to make managing your eCommerce store more logical and efficient.
The less time you or your staff need to administer your store, the more time they have to focus on other high value tasks such as marketing and merchandising.
4. Improved code base and architecture
Magento 2 features an entirely new, modern architecture that adds significant flexibility to extending the core functionality compared to Magento 1.
Getting techy - all of the code is now based within the “app” structure (rather than spread out) and every module has it’s own directory so you can access all of the files.
The new layout elements introduce “container wrappers” which contain “blocks” and render all the “children”. Organising blocks is more intuitive and ultimately easier to reorganise as needed.
All in all, this makes the Magento code base more efficient for developers to work with - albeit bearing in mind it’s still a hugely complicated system.
5. Improved integrations
Many of Magento’s “out of the box” integrations have been greatly improved in Magento 2 - for example PayPal and Braintree by PayPal are much simpler to setup and far more reliable.
They have also added a couple of additional payment options “out of the box” - including WorldPay and Cybersource.
In general, modules seem to be more reliable due to the improved code structure.
So there you have it! While it may be tempting to hold on to your current installation of Magento for as long as possible, the benefits of upgrading to Magento 2 mean the effort that you invest in moving your eCommerce to the new platform, will pay dividends is speed, usability and conversion long into the future.
Looking for someone to help with your Magento 2 upgrade?
7dots is an award winning digital consultancy that has been working with Magento for over 10 years. We are experienced Magento solution experts and have already completed a number of Magento 2 upgrade projects for domestic and global brands.