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Ecommerce businesses, like any venture, need to evolve to stay competitive. Sometimes, that evolution necessitates a change in the tools and platforms that support your operations. 

Recognizing the right time to make this change is crucial, and it can be based on a number of factors ranging from technical issues to outgrowing your current ecommerce platform.

If you’re an enterprise business manager considering switching ecommerce platforms, you’re not alone.

According to a Digital Commerce 360 survey conducted in September and October 2022, 27% of brands were thinking about ecommerce migration, and 61% of them planned to do it in 2023. Most of those companies expected to spend up to $500,000 to do so.

In this comprehensive guide, I’ll explain what ecommerce replatforming entails, reasons to consider replatforming, and how to do your ecommerce platform migration right.

Let’s go.

What Is Ecommerce Replatforming (AKA Ecommerce Migration)?

Ecommerce replatforming, in its simplest definition, is the process of switching from one ecommerce platform to another. 

But it's more than just changing tools or a new site redesign—it's about evolving with your business needs, addressing bottlenecks, and enhancing customer experience.

Replatforming is also called a migration. A more poetic term, migration makes you think of flocks of geese leaving for warmer climes. In this case, the geese represent all the data and designs that make your brand work.

But, it isn’t just moving your stuff from one platform to another. There are a few types of migrations that ecommerce brands can undertake.

Types of ecommerce migration

You have options when it comes to how you replatform your ecommerce site. It doesn’t have to be all or nothing. Ultimately, this will depend on your reasons for replatforming.

  • Platform to platform migration. The most straightforward approach, this route involves going from one platform to a more fitting one. That could look like going from WooCommerce to Shopify, for instance.
  • Partial migration. Sometimes you just need to change one problematic piece of your stack. For instance, you could move your product data from your singular platform into a PIM software, or use an external CMS with your existing ecommerce platform.
  • Cloud migration. If you use an on-premises ecommerce platform, you could choose to offload the servers for a cloud-based platform.
  • Headless commerce migration. To make your new store super snappy and more on-brand, you can from monolithic to microservices with a headless commerce platform, which splits your frontend from your backend. This might fall into the category of partial migration if you still want to use your ecommerce platform on the backend.

Ecommerce replatform vs ecommerce redesign

Ecommerce brands switch up their style all the time. These redesigns, while hard work, are a breeze compared with the technical requirements of a replatform (which can also include a redesign).

Let’s look at how these two ideas differ.

Ecommerce ReplatformingEcommerce Redesign
DefinitionChanging the underlying platform or technology of an ecommerce site.Updating the visual design and user interface of the site without altering the underlying technology.
Primary FocusPlatform functionality, scalability, performance, and cost efficiency.User experience, aesthetics, conversion optimization, and responsiveness.
Common ReasonsNeed for more features, scalability, improved performance, integration capabilities, or cost reductions.Enhancing user engagement, updating brand alignment, improving navigation, and optimizing for mobile devices.
Main ComponentsMigration of data, implementation of new platform features, integration with other systems.Visual layout, graphics, UI/UX improvements, navigation structure, responsiveness.
RisksHigh due to potential data loss, SEO impact, and system incompatibilities.Lower, primarily concerns around user acceptance and potential dips in conversion during adjustment period.
CostGenerally higher due to complexity of data migration and new platform integration.Can vary, generally lower unless it includes significant functional enhancements.
DurationTypically longer due to the complexity of migrating and stabilizing on a new platform.Usually shorter, focused on design aspects which can be rolled out incrementally.
OutcomeImproved backend operations, better scalability, potentially lower running costs, enhanced site performance.Enhanced user experience, increased engagement, potentially higher conversion rates, modernized brand portrayal.
ExampleMoving from Magento to Shopify, or upgrading from Magento 1 to Magento 2.Redesigning the website layout, updating color schemes, and improving the checkout process for better usability.

Why Do Brands Migrate Ecommerce Platforms?

If you are reading this, you’ve got some reason to investigate migrating your platform. It’s pretty common to have issues with your ecommerce platform as your brand grows and figures out what it wants to be. 

Here are a few big reasons that brands take on this sometimes herculean task.

  • Their site is performing poorly.
  • Their current platform lacks scalability.
  • The core functionality they need isn’t there.
  • Site speed is trending downward.
  • Bad admin experience with the backend.
  • The cost of maintenance is unsustainable.
  • Technical debt is only getting worse.
  • User experience (UX) is not great.
  • It doesn’t integrate well with other tools.
  • Lack of modern security features.
  • Their platform is bad for SEO.

Some of these problems are manageable for a time, but they mount as your brand grows and ripple out into your sales performance. And, nobody wants that.

So, when do you know you need to make the jump?

5 Signs You Should Migrate to a New Ecommerce Platform

There’s a plethora of factors that may have led you to consider switching ecommerce platforms for your business, but those factors usually fall within one or more of these core categories:

  • Your existing system is no longer serving your business needs.
  • You’re unable to scale further with your ecommerce site.
  • You’re faced with technical challenges you can’t solve.
  • Your customer experience is suffering.
  • You’re losing sales or feeling financial impacts.

Let’s look at each one in more detail.

1. Your business needs have evolved

Your business model and strategy are constantly evolving.

If your business has expanded its product line, entered new markets, or adopted a new sales strategy, your existing platform may not be equipped to support these changes.

You may also be faced with higher operational costs related to platform maintenance, workarounds, or third-party integrations that indicate that your current platform isn't the most economical choice for your ecommerce store.

Drilling deeper, you could be facing challenges integrating essential tools like CRM, ERP, or marketing software, and it might be a sign that your platform is becoming outdated.

2. You need to scale further

Too much traffic isn’t always a good thing.

If your website is experiencing traffic overloads and crashes or lags during peak shopping periods, like Black Friday or Cyber Monday, it's a clear sign that your platform can't scale with demand.

Inventory management system issues like a platform that doesn't allow for the seamless addition of new products or categories can hinder your growth.

You may also feel the crunch of geographic limitations. If you’re looking to expand to international markets, your platform should support multiple currencies, languages, and tax regulations.

At the end of the day, merchants want a platform that enables them to grow their business and continues to offer the right tools for their stage of growth. If that ceases to be the case, it’s probably time to switch.

photo of Andrea Gellert

Andrea Gellert

CMO of Clover

3. You’re faced with technical challenges

A number of technical issues can arise with any platform, including:

  • Recurring downtimes: Frequent website crashes or downtimes can affect sales and customer trust.
  • Limited customization options: Being unable to customize your storefront or back-end processes according to your unique needs can be a major setback.
  • Security concerns: With rising cybersecurity threats, if your platform doesn't provide robust security features or regular updates, it’s a significant risk.

Looking to cut costs, or the current platform is too confusing? Then you can and should make the switch. Doing this would usually cut valuable manhours working on the site. Use the time saved for more value-adding activities, like marketing.

photo of Firdaus Syazwani

Firdaus Syazwani

Founder of Dollar Bureau

4. Your customer experience is suffering

Your ecommerce platform may also be struggling to keep up with the times.

For example, an outdated interface that feels old-fashioned or a non-intuitive interface can deter modern customers from shopping on your online store. Legacy systems don’t tend to stay up-to-date with changing consumer needs.

Given the rise of mobile commerce, if your platform doesn’t offer a seamless mobile shopping experience, you're losing a substantial customer base.

Speed is of the essence. If your site suffers from slow loading times and takes too long to show customers what they want, they might abandon their shopping carts and go look elsewhere.

5. You’re losing sales or feeling financial impacts

An ecommerce platform that’s no longer tailored to your business needs or experiences technical issues can have severe financial consequences.

  • Lost sales: Technical issues or poor user experience can directly impact sales and conversion rates.
  • Higher maintenance costs: Outdated platforms might need more frequent repairs or third-party solutions, leading to a higher total cost of ownership and time-consuming fixes.
  • Investment in workarounds: You might find yourself investing more in temporary solutions or plugins to make up for platform deficiencies rather than focusing on growth strategies.
  • Reduced competitive edge: An outdated platform can affect your site's SEO, user experience, and overall brand perception, giving competitors an edge.

If you encounter problems with the current platform, such as slow speed, inadequate security measures, or poor SEO performance, that can’t be resolved, it may be time to consider switching to a new platform. The ultimate goal should always be to ensure the best possible performance for your business and revenue.

photo of Ankit Sharma

Ankit Sharma

CEO of Uproi Digital

It's essential to view your ecommerce platform not just as a tool, but as a partner in your business growth.

Recognizing the signs of an underperforming or outdated platform can help you make informed decisions about replatforming, ensuring that your business remains agile, competitive, and customer-centric.

How to Prepare For an Ecommerce Migration

preparing for your ecommerce migration

Before embarking on the journey of replatforming, you must be clear on your objectives. 

It's not just about transitioning from one system to another—it's about aligning that change with the broader objectives of your business. 

Let’s examine how to set clear, actionable goals for your migration.

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1. Evaluate your business's specific needs

Conduct a SWOT analysis to identify the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats of your current platform. This will give you a clear picture of what's working and what needs change.

Collect feedback from your team—especially those on the front lines, like customer support and sales—to get insights into current challenges.

Analyze customer behavior with data analytics tools to find patterns that suggest users are having difficulties or are dissatisfied, such as their time spent on the page or their exit intent.

2. Consider your expansion plans

If you're considering entering new markets—especially if you’re looking at an international expansion—ensure your new platform supports multiple languages and currencies and complies with regional regulations.

Anticipate the scalability and flexibility you'll need to introduce new product lines or service offerings.

Plan for channel expansions and integrations with marketplaces like Amazon or eBay, or consider how you might branch into brick-and-mortar retail or pop-up stores.

3. Evaluate your integration requirements

List out all your current integrations between tools and systems (like CRM, ERP, and marketing automation tools) and ensure they're compatible with potential new platforms.

Consider tools or systems you might want to integrate in the near future. Your new system should not only serve today's needs but also tomorrow's aspirations.

Data migration is crucial. Ensure your chosen platform allows for seamless data transfer. Look into how customer data, transaction histories, product information, and other essential data will be migrated.

4. Keep customer experience goals in mind

Aim for a platform that offers a seamless shopping experience with intuitive navigation, efficient search capabilities, and a smooth checkout process.

Mobile, mobile, mobile. I can’t stress this enough. With a significant chunk of online shopping happening on mobile, prioritize platforms offering robust mobile commerce features and mobile optimization first and foremost.

Modern consumers appreciate personalized shopping experiences. Consider platforms that offer AI-driven product recommendations, personalized content, and targeted promotions.

Finally, focus on customer feedback.

Ensure there are easy ways for customers to leave reviews, ask questions, and provide feedback. This continuous feedback loop can drive improvements long after replatforming.

Replatforming without a clear roadmap can lead to mistakes and inefficiencies. By setting clear goals that align with your business objectives, you ensure a smooth transition that sets the stage for growth, enhanced operations, and superior customer experiences.

Best Ecommerce Platforms to Consider For Migration

Transitioning to a new ecommerce platform is a significant commitment, both in terms of resources and long-term strategy. 

Given the plethora of choices available, how can you be sure you're selecting the best platform for your business? 

It’s essential that businesses research prospective new platforms thoroughly before committing to anything too quickly. Make sure there aren’t any hidden costs or roadblocks associated with transitioning from one system to another.

photo of Eric Sornoso

Eric Sornoso

CEO of Mealfan

Let’s look at some of the major SaaS players in the ecommerce platform market.

Shopify

shopify ecommerce platform
The biggest player in ecommerce these days, Shopify has everything you need to get started.

A cloud-based SaaS solution loved by many for its user-friendly interface. It's perfect for businesses looking for an all-in-one solution with integrated payment gateways and hassle-free setups.

Strengths: User-friendly, robust support, great for beginners.

Limitations: Limited customization, transaction fees (unless using Shopify Payments).

WooCommerce

woocommerce ecommerce platform wordpress
The OG of ecommerce platforms, WooCommerce comes with a robust foundation in WordPress.

A customizable, open-source platform built on WordPress. Ideal for businesses already familiar with WordPress and looking for flexibility.

Strengths: Highly customizable, large plugin ecosystem, no inherent transaction fees.

Limitations: Requires regular updates, might demand more from hosting as traffic grows.

Adobe Commerce (formerly Magento)

adobe commerce magento ecommerce platform
The scalable yet complex option for enterprise brands, Magento (now Adobe Commerce) is a strong contender for big brands.

Known for its scalability and customization, Adobe Commerce suits medium to large businesses with specific needs and a technical team in place.

Strengths: Highly scalable, extensive features, customizable.

Limitations: Requires technical expertise and can be costly in development and maintenance.

BigCommerce

bigcommerce ecommerce platform
Enterprise brands have taken note of this lowkey but powerful platform.

A comprehensive solution that offers out-of-the-box features and scalability without demanding too much technical know-how.

Strengths: Built-in features, good for SEO, no transaction fees.

Limitations: Limited free themes, and can become pricier as you scale.

I have seen businesses switch ecommerce platforms for two main reasons: scalability and cost. Usually, a newer business will start with Shopify or Wix because they are super easy to get started with. As they grow and scale, I’ve seen businesses switch platforms to WooCommerce or BigCommerce, because of the added customizations that these platforms offer. Of course, cost plays a huge role in these decisions.

photo of Kaylee Astle

Kaylee Astle

CEO of Blanka

Other platform factors to consider

Choosing an ecommerce platform is about more than just features. It's about finding the intersection of your business needs, technical capabilities, and growth aspirations. 

With thorough research and clear priorities, you can select a platform that not only meets your current requirements but also scales with your ambitions.

PlatformShopifyBigCommerceWooCommerceAdobe Commerce
Business SizeStartups/Small BusinessesStartups/Small BusinessesMedium BusinessesLarge Enterprises
Technical CompetencyNon-technicalNon-technicalIntermediateAdvanced
Setup CostsPaid themesPaid themesFree (self-hosted)Paid license
Monthly FeesYesYesNo (costs for hosting/plugins)Yes
Transaction FeesYes (external gateways)Yes (external gateways)NoYes (external gateways)
Native IntegrationsMany built-inMany built-inTied to WordPress ecosystemMany built-in
API FlexibilityGoodGoodGoodExcellent
Plugin/Extension EcosystemLargeLargeLarge (WordPress)Large

How to Plan Your Ecommerce Migration Process

Migration can be a daunting process. The key to a smooth transition lies in meticulous planning. From resource allocation to data transfer and SEO preservation, every detail matters. 

Create a step-by-step migration plan

You need to lay out the steps for your migration, so you can check off every box as you move through. At a high level, your plan should look something like this:

  1. Audit your current platform. Begin by evaluating what's on your existing platform—products, customer data, order histories, content, and any custom functionalities.
  2. Define the migration scope. Decide what data needs to be transferred, what can be archived, and what should be left behind.
  3. Choose the right tools. Some platforms offer migration tools or extensions to ease the process. Explore these options and choose tools that best fit your needs.
  4. Schedule your migration. Opt for a period with relatively low traffic, possibly a weekend or off-peak hours, to minimize disruptions.

Allocate resources: budget, personnel, time

Factor in costs for tools, external agency help (if needed), potential downtime, and unexpected expenses.

Identify who will spearhead the migration and other stakeholders in the process. This might include IT specialists, ecommerce managers, and even customer support to address customer concerns during the process.

Understand that migration isn't an overnight process.

Factor in time for pre-migration testing, the actual migration, post-migration checks, and troubleshooting.

Data migration: products, customers, orders

Your online store is nothing without the data that makes it run. So, you need to make sure every byte of that data makes it from old to new platform without a hitch. Your data falls into three categories.

  • Product data:
    • Details: Ensure product names, descriptions, attributes, images, SKUs, and prices are correctly transferred.
    • Variants: If your products have different variants, like sizes or colors, ensure these attributes are adequately represented.
  • Customer data:
    • Basic information: Name, email, phone number, and address.
    • Accounts: If you offer user accounts, ensure that login credentials remain consistent or inform users if they need to reset their password.
  • Order data:
    • Order history: Important for customer service inquiries and returns.
    • Current orders: Ensure there's no disruption to order processing during migration.

Ensure SEO retention during migration

When an online store changes its foundational platform, there's an inherent risk of losing the valuable search engine rankings cultivated over time. These rankings often translate to organic traffic, customer trust, and, consequently, sales. 

If SEO considerations are overlooked during migration, the site may suffer from broken links, lost metadata, or even penalties from search engines for unintentional duplicate content.

This could lead to decreased visibility on search engines, lost customer trust due to a disrupted user experience, and a tangible dip in revenue. Here’s a quick overview of the things to keep in mind, but we’ll get into more detail later in this post.

  • 301 redirects. If URL structures change during the migration, use 301 redirects. This will point search engines and visitors from your old URLs to new ones, preserving SEO value.
  • URL structures. If possible, keep the URL structure consistent during the migration. This minimizes disruptions to indexed pages and user bookmarks.
  • XML sitemaps and robots.txt. Post-migration, update your XML sitemap and submit it to search engines. Also, ensure the robots.txt file doesn't block essential pages.
  • 404 errors. After migration, actively monitor for any 404 (page not found) errors. Address them promptly to maintain a good user experience and SEO standing.

Migration is much like moving to a new house.

While you're excited about the new place, you also want to ensure your belongings reach safely and you don’t lose your old contacts. With a detailed plan, the right resources, and a focus on preserving the value you've built, migration can be less of a chore and more of a strategic leap forward.

Common Ecommerce Replatforming Technical Issues (And How to Solve Them)

Transitioning from one ecommerce platform to another is seldom a plug-and-play operation. With varied system architectures and distinct functionalities, technical challenges are inevitable. 

With foresight and adept management, these challenges can be tackled effectively. 

Let’s look at technical hurdles and how to navigate them.

Platform compatibility issues

Different platforms might be coded in different languages or utilize diverse databases.

Solution: Prior research can aid in selecting a new platform with similar backend technology or ensure you have the right conversion tools in place.

Site speed

Migration can sometimes result in bloated code or less-optimized images, affecting loading times.

Solution: Post-migration, conduct a site speed test and optimize accordingly—compress images, use caching, and minimize unnecessary scripts.

Security vulnerabilities

New platforms or improperly migrated sites can expose security loopholes and threats.

Solution: Regularly update the platform, plugins, and use trusted security tools to scan and rectify vulnerabilities.

Ecommerce data issues

  • Product data discrepancies. SKU mismatches, incorrect product details, or missing images can occur during migration.
    • Solution: Use data validation tools to identify discrepancies. Manual checks, especially for top-selling products, are also recommended.
  • Customer data inconsistencies. This could manifest as duplicated accounts or lost customer histories.
    • Solution: Deduplicate data before migration and post-migration, and encourage customers to update their details or merge accounts if necessary.
  • Order data disruptions. It's crucial that order histories remain intact for customer service and analytics.
    • Solution: Regular backups can ensure data restoration if needed. After migration, conduct sample checks to ensure order data integrity.

Platform-to-platform functionality transfers

  • Custom code transfer. Not all custom codes or functionalities from the old platform will be compatible with the new one.
    • Solution: Before migration, identify critical custom functionalities. Then, decide whether to recreate them on the new platform or find alternatives.
  • Third-party integrations. Your previous platform might have had specific integrations that the new platform doesn’t natively support.
    • Solution: Explore the new platform’s plugin or extension marketplace. If an integration isn't available, consider developing a custom solution.

Migration Services and Plugins For Overcoming Challenges

Some of the above technical issues can be solved by utilizing apps or developers (or likely both) to ensure there aren’t loose ends that have major downstream effects.

Using plugins for migrations

Plugins are often more affordable and quicker to deploy than custom solutions.

When to use: For common functionalities or challenges many businesses face. Always opt for well-rated and frequently updated plugins.

Using migration services

Custom development can cater to unique business needs and offer a tailored solution.

When to use: For specific business operations or when no existing plugin fulfills your requirements. Ensure you choose developers familiar with your chosen ecommerce platform.

Technical hurdles, while anticipated during migration, are not insurmountable. Many can be avoided altogether. For issues that do arise, a combination of technical know-how, trusted plugins, and skilled developers can pave the way for a seamless ecommerce migration. 

Remember, every challenge overcome is a step closer to a platform that aligns perfectly with your business vision.

How To Ensure Continuity In Customer Experience

One of the main reasons businesses opt for ecommerce replatforming is to improve or scale the customer experience. However, during the transition, it's crucial to maintain the trust and loyalty of your existing customers.

Ensuring continuity in their experience can significantly impact how they perceive the new platform.

1. Keep your customers informed

inform customer of ecommerce replatforming

Don’t leave your customers in the dark. Maintain clear communications throughout the process so they know what to expect. This way, any customer experience snafus can be more easily forgiven.

  • Before the transition. Telling your customers about a forthcoming migration will prevent customers from being taken by surprise and builds anticipation.
    • Methods: Email newsletters, banner announcements on your site, or even direct postal mail for significant updates.
  • During the transition. Keeping customers up to date while your platform is migrating reassures customers that any glitches or unavailability are temporary.
    • Methods: “Maintenance mode” pages with clear communication, social media updates, or SMS notifications for urgent alerts.
  • After the transition. Telling your customers when the transition is completed helps them navigate the new platform and fosters a sense of involvement.
    • Methods: Highlight tours of new features, email digests, or video demonstrations.

2. Test the new platform’s user experience (UX)

test ecommerce migration new user experience

Testing your shiny new ecommerce platform is paramount, especially regarding usability.

After all, your customers will be the main target users, and their feedback can help you manage improvements more efficiently. You can test in a few ways to get the data you need.

  • Beta testing. Invite a select group of loyal customers to try out the new platform before a full-scale launch. This will help you gather real-world feedback and uncover unforeseen challenges.
  • A/B testing. Compare two or more variations of a page or feature to determine which performs better in terms of user engagement or conversion. Data-driven decision-making is the key to fine-tuning the user experience for maximum satisfaction.
  • Feedback loops. Encourage users to provide feedback on their experience, preferences, and pain points. Gathering direct insights into user needs can guide and action immediate tweaks and improvements.

3. Ensure a smooth user transition

answer questions faqs for smooth transition

Your customers need to trust that you’ll guide them throughout your migration process. A big part of nurturing that trust is to provide support throughout onboarding them to the new platform.

Onboarding can be done via interactive tutorials that guide users through the new platform's features or pop-up tips that draw attention to new features or changes in the interface.

Provide a comprehensive set of FAQs that answer frequently asked questions on ordering, account management, and new features. Make sure your FAQs are consistently updated based on recurring customer queries during the transition phase.

Finally, extend customer support hours post-migration to handle increased queries and make sure your customer support team can assist users effectively. Another helpful feature is to automate answers to common queries via chatbot support, freeing up your support team to address more complex issues in person.

Your relationship with your customers doesn't pause during replatforming. If anything, it becomes even more crucial.

By prioritizing their experience and ensuring continuous communication, you can make the migration process feel less like a disruption and more like a collaborative journey towards a better, more efficient shopping experience.

SEO Best Practices for Ecommerce Platform Migration

One of the most important things as you are undertaking your ecommerce migration is that you aren’t messing up your hard-won SEO juice. And, migrations can have a huge effect on SEO, which will take your sales down with it.

So, how do you ensure your replatforming doesn’t make you invisible on Google? Let’s dig in.

1. Maintaining SEO during migration

In the digital realm, visibility is currency. As you transition between ecommerce platforms, preserving the SEO standing you've meticulously built over the years is paramount. Replatforming offers an opportunity not just to maintain but to enhance your SEO strategy.

  • Preserve organic traffic
    • Your site's organic reach, fostered over time, is a valuable asset
    • Neglecting SEO during migration risks significant drops in organic traffic, affecting sales and brand visibility
  • Maintain domain authority
    • Search engines have recognized your domain's credibility and relevance over time
    • A slipshod migration can erode this trust, pushing your site down in rankings
  • Avoid duplicate content issues
    • Migration can inadvertently create duplicate pages
    • Duplicate pages can confuse search engines and dilute page authority

2. Metadata preservation

All the things you don’t immediately see when looking at your store—title tags, meta descriptions, alt text—have a big impact on getting found via Google. Don’t lose them!

  • Title tags:
    • Ensure title tags remain consistent or are improved during migration
    • Title tags directly impact search rankings and click-through rates
  • Meta descriptions:
    • Write compelling and relevant meta descriptions
    • While not a direct ranking factor, meta descriptions influence user click-through rates
  • Alt text for images:
    • Descriptive alt text is crucial for image search and site accessibility
    • Ensure alt text accurately represents the image content

3. Content quality assurance

Keep a keen eye on everything as it transfers over. One little thing can multiply across pages, causing a big headache down the road.

  • Consistency. Maintain high-quality and relevant content post-migration.
  • Refresh and review. Use migration as an opportunity to prune outdated content and refresh pages that could benefit from an update.
  • Structured data. If you've implemented schema markups or rich snippets, ensure they're correctly transferred.

4. URL mapping and redirects

You want your content to be 1:1 with what you had on the old site, so getting a snapshot of your original URL mapping will help keep everything in order as it moves over.

  • Mapping old to new:
    • Document your site's URL structure before migration
    • This will serve as a blueprint for setting up redirects
  • 301 redirects:
    • Implement "permanent" redirects to seamlessly transfer visitors and search engines from old page URLs to their new counterparts
    • Ensures no loss in page authority
  • Avoiding chain redirects:
    • Multiple redirects in a sequence can slow down site speed and hamper user experience
    • Ensure your redirects are direct from old to new URLs
  • Monitoring for 404 errors:
    • Use tools like Google Search Console to monitor and quickly rectify any pages resulting in "Page Not Found" errors after migration

SEO is a long-term investment. As you upgrade to a new ecommerce platform, it's essential to remember that while the software may change, the SEO foundation remains.

By maintaining the integrity of this foundation, not only do you safeguard your past efforts, but you also set the stage for future growth in the ever-evolving digital marketplace.

Post-Ecommerce Migration Checklist

post ecommerce migration checklist

Once you've completed the replatforming process, you might be tempted to take a deep sigh of relief. While the heavy lifting is indeed behind you, the journey isn't over. The post-migration phase is crucial in ensuring the success of the entire operation. 

  • Monitor website performance:
    • Use tools like Google PageSpeed Insights or GTmetrix to analyze site speed.
    • Monitor uptime with free services like Pingdom or Uptime Robot.
    • Ensure Google Analytics is integrated to monitor user behavior and traffic.
    • Use Google's Mobile-Friendly Test to ensure mobile functionality.
  • Seek customer feedback:
    • Send short surveys after migration to gather user experience insights with tools like SurveyMonkey or Typeform.
    • Engage with customers directly through social media, emails, or phone calls.
    • Analyze feedback and integrate changes based on customer input.
  • Resolve emerging issues quickly:
    • Create a rapid response team to address issues as they arise.
    • Prioritize issues based on severity, impact, and number of users affected.
    • Be transparent with customers about problems and solutions.
  • Continue improving:
    • Regularly update platform, plugins, and integrations.
    • Conduct periodic reviews of site performance, SEO, and user experience for improvement.
    • Adapt your platform to keep pace with changing consumer behavior.
    • Introduce new features, revamp design elements, or rethink processes.

Is Replatforming Your Gateway To Success?

Replatforming isn’t just about addressing today’s challenges. It’s an acknowledgment that ecommerce keeps changing. By taking a proactive approach to migration, you're making a commitment to innovation and adaptability, the cornerstones of long-term success. 

Maintain comprehensive documentation of your ecommerce site migration: the challenges you faced, solutions you implemented, and feedback you received.

This the playbook for future growth for you and your in-house development team, saving you valuable time and resources during future transitions. 

Build a strong relationship with your platform vendor. They're your partner in this journey, keeping you informed about updates, best practices, and future shifts in the industry.

Here's the secret sauce: embrace flexibility.

Ecommerce strategies should be living documents, not museum exhibits. Encourage your team to continuously learn and adapt. Prioritize solutions that can scale with your ambitions. Most importantly, listen to your customers. Their evolving needs and preferences are the north star that guides your future initiatives.

Your ecommerce replatforming project is a significant milestone, but it's just the beginning. As the digital world grows and shifts, businesses that remain agile, informed, and adaptable will not just survive but thrive.

By embracing the future, you're setting your ecommerce website on a path of continuous evolution, ensuring relevancy, growth, and success in the years to come.

For more insights and recommendations about setting up your ecommerce business, platform selection, ecommerce tech stack, software recommendations, and other ecommerce solutions, subscribe to The Ecomm Manager newsletter today.

By Francois Marchand

Francois Marchand is passionate about helping and educating business leaders, ecommerce professionals, and digital marketers grow their skill sets to stay ahead of the competition. Francois holds a BA Specialization in Communication Studies & Journalism from Concordia University (Montreal, QC) and 20+ years of experience in ecommerce, marketing, traditional and digital media, and public relations, including The Vancouver Sun, National Post, CBC/Radio-Canada, Unbounce, and Vancouver Film School.

By Sean Flannigan

Sean is the Senior Editor for The Ecomm Manager. He's spent years getting to know the ecommerce space, from warehouse management and international shipping to web development and ecommerce marketing. A writer at heart (and in actuality), he brings a deep passion for great writing and storytelling to ecommerce topics big and small.