When to Consider Replatforming to Magento
Replatforming to Magento can be a big undertaking, both in regards to timeline and cost, but if you decide to make an investment by moving to Magento, the return on investment can be amazing. Magento is known for its robust system and open source coding. It is the platform for businesses and merchants who want to scale and have custom functionality. It allows you to do virtually anything you’d like to your website.
You may be asking yourself, “when should I be replatforming to Magento?” Well, that is a very open-ended question that can be difficult to answer. To try and help you out with this, we’ve come up with a few situations that show you when it is a good time to switch your ecommerce platform to Magento.
You’ve Outgrown Your Current Platform
When starting an ecommerce store, merchants tend to go with the least expensive, easier option. This can work in the beginning and maybe even for a few years, but at some point, you will outgrown that platform.
“Outgrowing” an ecommerce platform has happened to many of the merchants we’ve talked to throughout the years. Some platforms simply cannot handle high traffic, limit your growth opportunities and can’t possibly function like you want it to. Some of the biggest and renowned companies are on Magento (like Nike and Kendra Scott); they get very high volumes of traffic (especially during sales) and have have custom functionalities. Their sites are able to handle mass amounts of views and transactions.
Fees are Adding up
A lot of ecommerce platforms charge you for your monthly usage or even charge you for the amount of products you have listed on your store, but that is not how Magento works. Using Magento, you will not be charged for the amount of orders that come through your site or the amount of space you use per month. There are no tiered pricing or monthly packages (but there is an annual fee to use the Enterprise Edition). You are able to take as many orders as you’d like and aren’t charged fees per transaction. Magento is truly one of the only platforms that allows you to grow your business to its greatest potential.
You’ve Hit Customization Limitations
One of Magento’s biggest features and most renowned advantages over other ecommerce platforms is that it is open source. This lets you have access and control over the code, meaning that you can modify it to match your needs; you also own the code, which is a plus.
Owning your own code has many perks. Maybe that special functionally you want that will set you aside from your competition isn’t possible on your current platform. Or maybe you are limited with your design aesthetic or can’t find the add-on you need for your current platform. Magento has many themes available and a huge selection of extensions for their platform, plus unlimited options for design and development via a world-wide network of Magento Certified Developers.
When you own and control your own code, you are not at the mercy of your ecommerce platform. Let’s say you are using a plugin or special functionality on your site and your ecommerce platform decides to stop supporting that plugin, you’re stuck! If this scenario happened on Magento, you would be able to build and customize this plugin into your site since you have access to your own code. You could also think about it this way: having an ecommerce store on most platforms is more like “renting” your code. If that ecommerce platform were to suddenly disappear, you would be left with nothing. You don’t really own your site, but with Magento you are the owner of everything. You are able to customize features and extensions, pick your own hosting provider and write your own code.
All in all, when your customizations are becoming too costly or you are not finding the extensions/functionality that you want for your ecommerce store on your current platform, it might be time to switch to Magento. Many merchants end up switching to Magento because of its limitless capabilities.
Your Store is Not Mobile Friendly
This is the 21st century; more people are browsing on mobile over desktop now, so having a mobile friendly site is crucial to your business. If you still do not have a site that is responsive, you should look into implementing that ASAP and think about switching to Magento.
If you were to replatform to one of the latest versions of Magento 2, they come with responsive design themes that make it incredibly easy to have a mobile friendly site. This will take far less time and money than if you tried to build a mobile version of your site to coincide with your current website.
You are Long Overdue for [Technical] Updates
Oftentimes, merchants don’t realize that trying to fix the problems on their current platform can be more costly than just switching to a more advanced platform. For example, Magento is excellent about sending out security updates and patches, and letting all of their merchants know when they need to implement those patches; one of their highest priorities is security and they truly look out for the merchants who are using their platform.
Costs to Consider When Replatforming
Keep in mind any extra costs that may come up – similar to how you would set aside extra money when renovating a house. There maybe some bumps along the way and unforeseen surprises so just prepare for those possibilities – better safe than sorry! Here are a few other instances to take into consideration when thinking about moving to Magento (or replatforming at all):
- Magento Community Edition is free, and Magento Enterprise Edition includes a yearly fee but also comes with more features and scalability. If you are unsure which edition is right for you, Creatuity can advise on the details of the differences and make an honest recommendation based on our extensive experience with both.
- Design and development by the experts (vs doing it in-house) can increase ROI and allow you to focus on the other aspects of your business. Hiring a Magento Partner with in-house Magento Certified Developers yields the best results for your project, as they have the most experience and training. At Creatuity, we recommend budgeting at least $30,000-$50,000 for the design and development part of the project. The complexity of your new site’s custom features will determine the budget. Some projects are more but this is a good minimum budget. Creatuity can help you with more detailed budgeting after hearing more about your requirements.
- If you desire integrations with 3rd party systems (ERP, OMS, accounting software, etc.) then you should budget for this, as well. Often times there is a pre-built extension that will drastically reduce the cost.
- Migrating your customer and order data can add some cost to the project as well. If you are short on budget, we recommend considering what absolutely must be migrated only. For example, if your OMS/ERP already has this information from your current site, you might not need to migrate it into Magento.
How to Get Started Migrating to Magento
Wondering where to start? An experienced Magento Partner like Creatuity can help you start preparing a migration plan, including project scope, timeline and budget. We specialize in Magento ecommerce design, development and support for leading retailers. Creatuity has helped numerous Magento merchants migrate their ecommerce site to Magento and we’d be happy to chat with you more to see if we are the right fight to implement this change for you. You can reach us by email at email@example.com or by phone at 214-810-5005.