Magento to Shopify Migration Guide 
Are you one of the many ecommerce store owners considering migration from Magento to Shopify or Shopify Plus?
You’re probably wondering how involved the process is…whether your customers will notice… how much downtime there will be… whether your SEO rankings will suffer… how it will affect the bottom line.
All valid concerns for any store owner. But the migration is easier than you think – if you’re well prepared and use the right tools.
In this brief guide, you’ll find out the basic steps you need to take to migrate from Magento to Shopify.
What’s all the buzz about Shopify?
Over the past 12 months, the buzz around Shopify has grown as it has evolved into one of Canada’s largest companies.
Shopify is one of the few enterprises to emerge from the pandemic in a healthier state than when we entered it.
From new commercial partnerships with Google to a record high share price, all the recent news about Shopify seems positive.
In ecommerce terms, it is well set up to rival Amazon in the future. This buzz has got many stores on other platforms wondering whether to make the move.
Many are probably put off by the perceived complexities of switching platforms. That’s not without reason – migrations can be disasters if they are not managed properly.
Large and small stores alike need planning and expertise for everything to go smoothly. But the momentary effort and disruption will be worth it as you build a business that can scale for the future.
Shopify can support the traffic volumes you’re looking for and integrates with existing tech stacks. It looks after the ecommerce backend for you and is secure, user-friendly, flexible. affordable for almost every store owner, and home to many high-growth merchants.
Shopify and its wonderful ecosystem of supporting apps that add so much usability, functionality, and profitability to stores is ready and waiting for you.
Magento to Shopify migration in 6 easy steps
A migration or “re-platforming” moves all the components of your existing website from one place to another. Just like moving home, that can be disastrous without the right planning and assistance.
Follow these steps for a successful migration that gets you set up and ready to go on Shopify.
Plan for optimized SEO and site structure
Planning and preparation are key to a smooth migration. This will involve an audit of the existing site. Without this, you’re asking for trouble – especially with SEO and your rankings.
Many things can change when you migrate. Each of the following can affect rankings and SEO performance:
- URLs (Shopify has a strict URL structure: domain.com/products/my-first-product)
- Internal linking structure
- HTML code
You will want to reduce the risk of a negative impact that could damage the traffic, visibility and rankings of your store after you move to Shopify.
To plan for the potential SEO effect, your audit should pay special attention to the following:
- Key search terms that shoppers are currently using to find your store
- The main content on your existing website that attracts visitors – the main traffic-generating pages should be prominent in your thinking during the migration process
- Backlinks – understand your backlink profile and which are the most important links on the existing site
You will also need to address the site structure you want for your new Shopify-based store. Is your current site architecture poorly optimized? Is it affecting search?
If so, the migration to Shopify presents an opportunity to fix this up and optimize it for the future. Consider the following elements of your existing site and how they are structured:
- Product pages
- Collection pages
- Hub pages
- Static pages (e.g., About, Contact, etc.)
- Other important content
You need to decide whether to migrate the entire existing site or only certain pages, with a view to adding newly written pages to the new store after the migration.
There may be outdated information on your Magento store that is best left behind. This needs to be part of the audit.
Basic data that storeowners generally want to migrate includes:
- Product and collection data
- Embedded images and videos
- All customer information
- Manufacturer information
- Order history and status data
- Pricing and discount information
- Tax information
- SEO settings – including 301 redirects
In this planning stage, sit down with your store designer/developer or another technical expert. Go through the technical issues besides SEO and site structure that will affect the migration.
Being prepared for technical hiccups is all part of the migration process.
Choose a migration method
Once you have your plan, it’s time to think about putting it into action: how are you going to organize the migration of all the data you have identified in the first step?
Here, you have several options:
- A ready-made migration app that automates the process
- Combining a ready-made app with native apps for migrating specific types of data
- A customized manual solution using an external agency
Your decision will probably need to balance the urgency of migrating with the costs involved and the amount of data to be migrated. The larger the store, the more likely a custom migration is required.
For smaller stores, migration apps have made great strides in recent years. You can read about one of the best ones below.
If you don’t use one of the apps, you’ll likely need to hire a developer who specializes in Magento migrations.
Take some time to consider the best way to migrate your store as your choice will affect the stress levels you experience as the store owner during the migration process!
Back up your Magento Store
Whichever method of migration you use, nothing should happen without a full backup of your store data.
The migration may not go entirely to plan the first time, so you need to ensure you can switch back to a previous version of your store.
There are plenty of online tutorials to help with backing up a Magento store.
Migrate and test
Once you hit GO and your data starts to migrate across to the Shopify platform, there won’t be much to do for an hour or two – or many hours for larger stores.
Whatever the size of your store, you need to test it thoroughly once the migration is complete and before you cut over and go live. There will likely be a few bugs to iron out and fixes to apply.
Run some test orders through to the checkout and make sure that the most important functions in your store are working properly. Check that the customer data is organized correctly and displays properly.
Restyle your store and reoptimize content
When you move to Shopify from Magento, your store is not going to look exactly the same.
You will likely choose one of the dozens of excellent pre-made Shopify themes though some larger stores design their own customized theme from scratch.
Once you have chosen your theme, go through the content on each page and make sure that it is styled in the way that you want, consistently from one page to the next.
This may also be a good time to double-check and re-optimize content if some pages on the old site were underperforming.
Switch over permanently to Shopify
Once all the testing, restyling and reoptimizing is complete, pick a suitable time to cut over to the new store on the Shopify platform.
This is usually done during the quietest trading period in the week. A few orders may trickle through during the cut-over period and these will need to be checked and reconciled but, basically, after that, you’re done.
You can start planning for a bright Shopify store future.
Which Shopify migration app should you use?
You shouldn’t be too surprised, given the entire universe of apps available and designed to make life easier for Shopify store owners that there are apps to help you migrate from Magento.
From our experience, the standout app is Cart2Cart.
All store data like products, customers, orders, categories, images, and much more can be migrated from Magento to Shopify in a few clicks with the Cart2Cart app.
Once you’ve decided on the data you want to migrate and provided your current store details, you can set up your migration with Cart2Cart in five minutes.
You can then run a free optional demo or launch a full migration. Migrating 5,000 entities will take no more than an hour.
Cart2Cart is free to install and guarantees 100 percent secure and accurate data migration, so all your sensitive details are safe during the import process. You can even preserve your order IDs and SEO after the switch.
Use the Shopify free trial
Shopify offers a free trial. Before you commit to migrating everything over, why not give it a go first. Familiarize yourself with its main features and themes. Check out what other Shopify-based store owners are doing.
You will also have access to the customer support team at Shopify to help you become more familiar with the platform.
From Magento to Shopify Migration Guide
A Magento to Shopify migration should not be taken lightly. Sure enough, it’s a big change.
But the beauty is that if you plan it well, your customers will barely notice and you’ll still be able to provide the same superb service as before but with improvements. Once you’re up and running with Shopify, you’re in good hands.
You can look forward to doing more, improving the user experience, making life easier for you and your team and growing with one of the quickest growing companies in the world.
Consider it an investment in the future of your store.