Before we start with the technical part of how to migrate from Magento to WooCommerce, I think some thoughts must be shared.
Why are there so many large online stores created with Magento?
Surely you have heard that “If you have a really big online store you have to use Magento”. Well it’s not true, it’s a kind of fallacy known as the Affirmation of the Consequent. Why do I say this?
It turns out that it is just the opposite, the correct statement would actually be that “If you use Magento you can only afford it if you have a really big online store, with lots of sales”
So why is there this fallacy going around? Well, it’s as simple as that until not long ago, the online stores of the most famous brands were created with Magento, and we erroneously associated that – by affirmation of the consequent – if you have a large online store you will have to use Magento, like the big ones.
So why do those big online stores use Magento? It should not be bad if it is able to manage huge Ecommerce.
Of course, Magento is an Ecommerce platform, with an open source option, very capable, which until years ago was the most solid thing there was, but that has passed.
Behind it came other Open Source platforms like PrestaShop and WooCommerce, or owned ones like Shopify, which have nothing to envy Magento in terms of performance and power.
In fact, nowadays, practically any of the Open Source platforms is much more recommendable than Magento for several reasons:
- The hosting requirements are minimal, and cheaper.
- More modules and templates, thousands of them free in the case of WooCommerce.
- Much cheaper modules and templates.
- Much more developers, which finally lowers the costs of any project because there is a more competitive market.
- Simple and free installations and updates, especially with WooCommerce.
And these are just a few.
In short, only if you have a large budget you can afford an online store with Magento, because …
- The hosting requirements are high, so you have to pay more from the beginning, no matter the size and sales of your Ecommerce.
- There are few developers and they charge you practically whatever they want.
- There are few free upgrades and modules, and those that are available are expensive.
- Upgrades – especially from Magento 1 to Magento 2 – are tricky … and expensive in the end.
Is there currently a reason to create an online store with Magento?
Only if the one developer you know only creates online stores with Magento and you want to have a lifetime dependency on it.
Even the most basic online store created with Magento will cost you thousands of €/$.
You could also opt for the hosted option, by Magento Commerce, which is the version similar to Shopify, with costs per turnover, always prohibitive.
So no, no way, and if you disagree explain it to me in the comments (We don’t accept answers from companies that only do developments in Magento 😀 )
The arrival of Magento 2 has been a new incentive for many people to consider migrating to other platforms, and specifically to WooCommerce.
Magento 1 is an abandoned development that is not compatible with almost any current standard or technology.
But there is a problem: the migration from Magento 1 to Magento 2.
How to migrate from Magento 1 to Magento 2
Magento 1 and Magento 2 are created using completely different technologies.
Neither the extensions nor the customizations can be reused, making a Magento 1 extension work in Magento 2 means practically starting from scratch.
Because of this, the migration process is quite complicated, and can take between two and four months of development work, with the costs involved.
Here’s a rough outline of what the migration process from Magento 1 to Magento 2 would look like:
- Create a new, empty installation of Magento 2 and install the data migration tool from the command line of your installation root. Add your Magento account identification keys.
- Configure the data migration tool, which involves huge changes at the server level.
- Migrate your theme to Magento 2. If you are unlucky enough that your theme is not also developed for Magento 2 you will have to go through a long process of reprogramming or choosing a new (almost a better option) theme, and you know, this means that you have to redesign your site completely.
- Install all the extensions your online store needs. Some of the ones you have been using will not be available for Magento 2, so you may have to find new solutions for those features.
- Check the compatibility of all the custom code that your online store has, because it is quite probable that it will not work with Magento 2. The code migration tool can help you check compatibilities, but there is a lot of work to do, be sure.
- Use the data migration tool to migrate customers, catalogs, orders, shipping, and store settings. This is not an assistant and a few clicks, it requires server and command line changes.
- Copy all media files from Magento 1 to Magento 2
Even after all these steps you have no guarantee that everything will migrate correctly.
Of course, this process can’t be done by just anyone, it requires extensive development, server and database experience. It’s a complex process, which if not done correctly could cost you years of work, customer information and sales.
Why choose WooCommerce instead of Magento?
I don’t think I should spend too much time explaining it, but I’ll leave you with a simple list:
- Any hosting works for the beggining, even the cheapest shared one.
- Open Source and GPL license.
- Frequent and free updates.
- Thousands of free plugins and themes.
- Lots of developers to choose from.
- Always compatible with the latest technologies and software.
- A great development community, support, translations.
- Lots of free information about how to customize and extend WooCommerce(Like this blog😘).
- WooCommerce is capable of scaling to any size of online store.
- Undisputed leader in E-commerce in the world and rising.
How to migrate from Magento to WooCommerce easily
The first thing you should know, and don’t be surprised, is that migrating from Magento to WooCommerce is much easier than migrating from Magento 1 to Magento 2.
It doesn’t matter if you use Magento Community or Magento Commerce, the steps are basically the same.
Initial steps to migrate from Magento to WooCommerce
To begin with, there are a few basic steps you must take:
- Hire a good hosting.
- Install WordPress.
- Install WooCommerce and configure it using the assistant.
- Choose a theme for WooCommerce, there are thousands of free ones, you won’t have any trouble finding one that suits your needs.
Manual migration from Magento to WooCommerce
Migrating your Magento online store data to WooCommerce is easy and free. Simply follow these steps:
- Export the Magento data as CSV files.
- On the desktop of your WordPress+WooCommerce installation, go to WooCommerce → Products.
- At the top of the page click on the Import button to launch the assistant for importing products from CSV files.
- Select Choose File and click on the CSV file you want to import and continue.
- You will see the Column Assignment screen, this is where WooCommerce tries to automatically assign the column name from your Magento CSV file to WooCommerce product fields. You may need to tweak some of them on your own for a perfect mapping, if so do so using the drop down menus to the right of each row.
- Click on the last step of the importer and wait for the process to finish.
- Repeat these steps with the rest of your CSV files.
Migration with online services
There are websites that offer migrations at very reasonable costs.
One of them, specialized in Ecommerce, is Cart2Cart. The process is simple and the results are very good most of the time.
You only have to make an estimate of what you will be charged for a migration from Magento to WooCommerce, which will depend on the amount of data to be migrated.
And little else. There are, of course, many things you may need to configure, or features to add, but that’s all WordPress style: easy and free for the most part. For everything else, here is your WordPressHelp blog.
Read this post in Spanish: Cómo y por qué deberías migrar de Magento a WooCommerce