When the upcoming store migration is on the horizon, it's about time to start planning ahead. But why should I? - you might ask. The answer is simple - while the whole process seems to be rather easy to cope with, the bitter truth is - no, it's not. Merchants should take into account lots of things - the level of their tech expertise, number data entities that need to be transferred, time and money that they are ready to invest, etc. Therefore, our today's post will be dedicated to VirtueMart to WooCommerce migration and it's perks and pitfalls. So, keep reading to find out the best possible way to perform it hassle-free.
VirtueMart vs. WooCommerce. Quick Facts
Both VirtueMart and WooCommerce are free, open-source plugins that were specifically designed for the Joomla Content Management System and WordPress users respectively. VirtueMart will be suitable for small to middle-sized online stores. WooCommerce, on the other hand, is an ideal solution for the owners of small to large-sized businesses.
Why Migrate from VirtueMart to WooCommerce?
It is evident that each platform has its pros and cons, and it is usually hard to decide which one will be right for your business. But, taking into account the decreasing popularity of VirtueMart, it is fair to say that it lacks the main essential features of an up to date platform. Its weaknesses include:
- Not the most user-friendly platform
- Lack of high-quality third-party extensions
- Old-fashioned basic free themes that won't fit an up to date store
- Weak SEO features
- Additional money need to be spent on payment gateways, security and hosting
- The necessity to hire a developer in case you're not a tech-geek
Contrarily, WooCommerce is a feature-rich solution that will satisfy the needs of most business owners. The benefits of using this platform are the following:
- 100% customizable solution
- Straightforward and easy-navigable design
- High flexibility and adaptability to any type of store
- Unique SEO features
- A myriad of both free and paid plugins and themes
- Large user community with a significant number of documentation, guides, and articles
The stark contrast between the two solutions is evident. But it's up to you to decide which one will suit your business needs and requirements.
How to Migrate from VirtueMart to WooCommerce?
There are several approaches to VirtueMart to WooCommerce migration, but an automated way is considered to be the less effort- and time-consuming one. By using services like Cart2Cart, you will transfer all the store's data to another platform without the need to dive deep into coding.
So, once you've firmly decided to migrate your online store from VirtueMart to WooCommerce, we recommend you to adhere to the following guidelines:
Establish the WooCommerce Store
First of all, you will need to install the WordPress platform. Once done, download the WooCommerce from the WP plugin section and activate it.
In case you're still not sure whether to choose WooCommerce as your Target cart, make use of our Migration Preview service. It helps merchants to take a glimpse at their stores on a new platform by transferring a limited number of data entities to Cart2Cart's test store. Keep in mind that it will be live only for three days.
Prepare Your VirtueMart Store for Migration
- Perform store's audit to remove all the outdated and needless data
- Although Cart2Cart doesn't delete any information during the migration process, it is recommended to backup your store to any of the external devices
Additionally, you may calculate the exact price of the replatforming with the help of the Migration Estimator. Also, please, take your time to watch the VirtueMart to WooCommerce migration tutorial:
Configure Source and Target Carts
Choose VirtueMart as your Source Cart from the drop-down menu in the Migration Wizard. Copy the Store's URL to the corresponding field and install the Connection Bridge (download it, unpack files to the store's root folder). Once you've received a notification, the Connection Bridge has been successfully installed, proceed to the next step.
Select WooCommerce as your Target Cart. Provide all the necessary credentials (WordPress Admin URL, login, and password) and click the "Choose entities" button.
Select the Necessary Data Entities
At this point, you will have to decide which data entities you wish to transfer from VirtueMart to WooCommerce. It is possible to either tick the box with the "Select all" option - in this case, all the store's data will be migrated to the Target Cart. Alternatively, you may select to relocate only some of the data:
- Products (reviews, categories, manufacturers, taxes)
- Customers (orders)
Consider Choosing Additional Options
Cart2Cart provides its customers with the possibility to ease the data transfer process by picking some of the following extra options (both free and paid ones):
- Create 301 redirects on your target store after migration - it requires the installment of the free additional plugins before the data transfer: the "ReDJ" VirtueMart plugin and the WP "Redirection" plugin.
- Preserve order IDs on Target Store - this option will be available if you install the free WooCommerce Sequential Order Number app.
- Migrate customers' passwords with the help of Cart2Cart WooCommerce Passwords Migration Plugin that also needs to be set up before the migration.
Please note that all these suggestions are optional, and if you decide not to choose them, it won't affect the quality of your migration.
Carry out Data Mapping
Now you'll have to adjust your VirtueMart order statuses and customer groups to the ones on the WooCommerce store.
Run Demo Migration
With the help of the free Demo Migration, you can transfer a restricted number of entities (up to 10) to the WooCommerce store just within 10-30 minutes. We recommend not to skip this step since it shows the service in action.
Important! Do not close your browser window before the Demo Migration is completed.
Launch Full Migration
Once you've checked the Demo Migration results, feel free to start the full migration of your store from VirtueMart to WooCommerce. Now you can safely close the browser window and return to your business.
As soon as you receive notification that the Full Migration of your store has been completed, we urge you to do the following:
- Check the store for common mistakes (e.g., categories, products, catalogs), register new customers, make a few test purchases, etc.
- Install all the necessary modules and themes from the WooCommerce marketplace.
- Alert your clients of the platform's switch and ask them to inform you of any arising problems.
- Use our Recent Data Migration Service to transfer the new data (e.g., products, customers, etc.) that has appeared on your VirtueMart store during or after the migration.
So, now you're all set to perform the VirtueMart to WooCommerce store migration just within a few clicks. Don't wait any longer and upgrade your business with limitless possibilities of a new eCommerce solution.