Magento 1 to Magento 2 Migration Guide: How to Migrate Safely

How To Migrate Magento 1 To Magento 2 In 30 Days

It’s no doubt that there are many reasons to consider Magento 1 to Magento 2 migration, especially when Magento has released the latest fantastic version. Compared to Magento 1, Magento 2 brings about both better design and performance. If we come back to a few years ago, not many people dare to upgrade to Magento 2 owing to its instability. There are plenty of bugs in the very first version of Magento 2. But now, there is a different story when Magento puts all of its efforts into innovating, improving, and enhancing Magento 2 functionality.

Besides, it would be best if you considered migrating from Magento 1 to Magento 2 at your earliest since Magento ceased providing support for Magento 1 in June 2020.

Apart from that, it is a complicated process that requires time, money, and effort. Magento developers probably know how tough it is; therefore, this blog post is not for them but for Magento store owners, who are going to migrate from Magento 1 to Magento 2. In other words, in today’s post, we will show Magento merchants how to conduct Magento migration step-by-step and within the optimal period.

Important Things To Know Before Magento 2 Migration

Many people think that Magento 1 to Magento 2 migration is similar to updating the latest version of Magento 1.

However, it’s wrong!

To be more specific, Magento migration means you will have to build a new website on Magento 2 from scratch but migrate data from the old site.

You can’t continue using your current Magento 1 themes, extensions, and code. We will go into detail in the following parts.

30 Days To Migrate Magento 1 To Magento 2

From our experience, it would take 4-5 weeks (approximately 30 working days) to migrate Magento 1 to Magento 2 on average. However, if your site requires a lot of custom functions and theme customization with a massive amount of data to migrate, the upgrade would be longer. Let’s see what would be involved in the migration:

1. Preparation

Before migrating your website to Magento 2, please look at the existing Magento 1 store and decide which are your “true needs” and need moving to the new site. For instance, although your website might contain a huge database asset, what you need to migrate includes products, categories, customers, and orders. Also, keep what you think is necessary and remove the redundant ones in terms of the extensions.

Afterward, it’s highly recommended to carefully back up your Magento 1 website data, keeping all of the files, folders, and databases to handle the wrong situations.

Furthermore, we suggest you use the same hosting server for both of your Magento 1 and 2 stores (optional).

2. Magento Theme Migration

As mentioned before, it is impossible to move the theme and template from Magento 1 to the new site. However, there are several solutions to it.

The 1st solution: Using ready-made themes

The first solution is buying a ready-made theme for Magento 2 to apply for your new website. There are hundreds of available attractive designs to choose from in the Magento marketplace or well-known theme markets like Themeforest, TemplateMonster, VenusTheme, etc.

Pros: There are a vast number of choices for your new website design. This solution also saves you time and money for theme designing and coding. And it only costs $100 to $200 for a Magento 2 responsive theme that well-designed.

Cons: Other stores can also buy that theme and have a similar store appearance as yours. To handle this issue, you can customize the theme to match your brand image. The cost for theme customization will depend significantly on which extent you want to customize and the Magento developer/designer you choose.

The 2nd solution: Using free themes

The second solution is finding and utilizing a Magento 2 theme for free download.

Pros: The obvious advantage of this solution is that you don’t have to spend to get a new look.

Cons: Compared to the number of themes in the first solution, the free themes to choose from are just a quarter or even much less. Moreover, there is no guarantee for the quality of those free themes and templates. Most of their functions are very limited. Therefore, you should check it carefully before applying to the new site.

The 3rd solution: Create a new design

The third solution is creating a new website design from scratch. For this option, you can hire either a Magento agency or just a website designer to make a design to your requirements.

Pros: Acquiring a unique website design that fulfills all of your needs and requirements.

Cons: You have to spend a lot of money to deploy this solution. Also, it can take 1-2 months to complete the design both on the PSD and front-end programming.

The 4th solution: Cloning the old website design

The fourth solution is cloning your Magento 1 store. If you still keep the store design (under the PSD file), you can consider cloning it to create the same look for your Magento 2 store.

Pros: Maintaining the current Magento website design that is familiar to all of your customers.

Cons: The time for website cloning depends on how complicated your current design is. However, cloning a website, in general, will also take a noticeable amount of time (at least one month). Additionally, you can finally get a similar design (70-80%) to the old one but not the same (100%) due to the different structures of Magento 1 and 2.

What is the best solution for Magento theme migration?

Despite introducing many solutions to tackle the Magento theme migration issue, we highly recommend the 1st solution. Overall, utilizing a ready-made Magento 2 theme will take the least amount of time (for seeking the proper theme), money (for possessing the theme), and effort (for installing and customizing it). Most of our customers now are going for this option.

Besides, the total time for deploying the theme on your new Magento 2 website (including installation, configuration, and minor customization) would be from 4-5 days on average.

3. Data Migration

Magento data migration is the process of transferring all of your data, including products, categories, customers, orders, testimonials, reviews, etc., to the new website. It is true to say that this is the most pivotal stage in the Magento 2 upgrade process, asking you to have wise knowledge and experience to conduct the migration. Otherwise, a small mistake can lead to severe data loss without recovery.

To move your database assets from Magento 1 to Magento 2, we can use the handy Magento Data Migration Tool provided by Magento. This tool will use map files to transform data into your Magento 2 store. More specifically, it will verify the consistency between your Magento 1 and 2 database structures, track the data transfer progress, create logs, and run data verification tests.

Firstly, you will have to install the Magento Data Migration Tool via composer to perform the data migration. Remember to download the correct version of the tool used for your Magento 2 version.

For example, if you build your new website on Magento 2.4.3, you must install the Magento Data Migration Tool with the same version (2.4.3). Secondly, you need to migrate configuration settings from M1 to M2, including stores, websites, system configurations (shipping, payment, tax), and so on. Thirdly, it’s time to migrate the primary data in the database.

Apart from this, it would take from 3 to 5 days to migrate data from Magento 1 to Magento 2 based on the existing number of your products, orders, and customers.

4. Magento Extension Migration

Similar to the theme, you can not use the Magento 1 extensions in the Magento 2 store. To “migrate” these extensions, you must find the modules and plugins that provide the same functions but Magento 2.

However, not all of the extensions for Magento 1 are available for Magento 2. In that case, you can contact Magento extension providers to ask them to develop custom modules for your store.

We also need to migrate data from M1 to M2 for some extensions, such as Reward Points and Store Credit.

On average, it will take 3-4 hours for each plugin migration, including installation, configuration, and possible conflicts resolved.

Therefore, we advise you to select and “migrate” only necessary Magento extensions to the new site to save you time, money, and effort.

5. Custom Code Migration

Fortunately, most of the Magento 1 custom code is compatible with Magento 2, so you can either rewrite or migrate the code by using several Magento code migration tools. We often use the Code Migration Toolkit from Magento which makes things simpler.

Besides, it’s worth noting that there are several differences in the structures of M1 and M2. You need to check the code carefully to make sure that it works well in the new store.

6. Settings Migration

After doing the theme, data, and extension migration, you have gone through 80% of the migration process. Now, you have to complete the configuration on the new Magento 2 website, including language, currency, tax, email template settings, and so on.

Also, SEO plays a significant role in boosting traffic to your website afterward. Magento 2 allows you to create SEO-friendly URLs, edit meta titles/descriptions/tags/keywords, add image alt, control site indexing, and integrate with Google services (Analytics/Search Console/Adwords). Therefore, don’t forget to take advantage of these valuable features if you migrate Magento 1 to Magento 2.

7. Testing

The last fundamental stage of the Magento 2 migration process is testing. It’s compulsory to thoroughly review and check the whole site to ensure everything runs as it should after you migrate Magento 1 to Magento 2. Here is the recommended checklist that you use when testing your stores after Magento 2 upgrade:

Frontend Testing:

Store appearance

  • Homepage
  • CMS pages
  • Page content
  • Banner sliders
  • Header & Footer links

Product listing

  • Categories & sub-categories
  • Product grid/list mode
  • Layered navigation menu
  • Product sorting
  • Product add-to-cart
  • Breadcrumbs
  • Product pager

Products page

  • Add-to-cart/ wishlist/ comparison list
  • Product images & videos
  • Product quantity
  • Price
  • Product description
  • Product ratings & reviews

Shopping cart

  • Product add-to-cart
  • Quantity changes
  • Products removal
  • Discount application
  • Shipping & tax calculation
  • Subtotal & grand total price

Checkout page

  • Guest checkout
  • Billing and shipping
  • Shipping & payment methods

Customer account and information

  • Customer login & registration
  • Forgot password
  • Customer account page


  • Registration confirmation
  • Password reset
  • Order confirmation
  • Contact us submission
  • Newsletter subscription

Backend Testing:

Product & Catalog

  • Product configuration
  • Categories configuration
  • Attributes management
  • Reviews management
  • Sitemap generation


  • Order creation
  • Invoice submission
  • Shipment submission
  • Credit Memo creation


  • Customer management
  • Customer groups creation


  • Catalog price rules
  • Shopping cart price rules

How Much Does It Cost To Migrate From Magento 1 To Magento 2?

The migration cost might be high, but it deserves it. Depending on the complexity of your expected website that the price might be higher or less. For example, in Magento theme migration, you have to spend just $100-200 for a ready-made theme or up to $1,000-$2,000 for getting a unique design or cloning the old site. Besides, the more extensions you want to migrate, the more money you have to pay.

In case you don’t migrate Magento 1 to Magento 2 yourself but use the Magento 2 migration service from an agency, the cost of your project will also depend significantly on the Magento developer’s hourly rate. For instance, while a Magento development company in the USA will charge you $75-150 per working hour, you have to pay just half or even less ($20-50 per working hour) for an offshore Magento development agency. This huge price gap is simply due to the considerable difference between the labor costs of regions.

With more than 10-year experience in Magento development, we can deliver a smooth and high-quality migration process at a very reasonable price. Contact us now to get a FREE and FAST quotation and consultation for your project!


From what is happening, Magento 2 is “Now” and “Future” while Magento 1 has become obsolete and left far behind. If you want to do the best for your site, why don’t you migrate Magento 1 to Magento 2 now? Most of your competitors perhaps have already upgraded their websites to Magento 2.