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Downgrading Magento Commerce to Magento Open Source.

Posted by: Absolute Design

The Challenge

Mick George Ltd is one of the leading suppliers to the construction industry throughout East Anglia and the East Midlands.

Having already migrated to M2 Commerce in 2017 with another Magneto Partner, the marketing team at Mick George identified they were not utilising the full potential of Magento Commerce and in particular its B2B suite. As a result, they were looking to re-platform ahead of the sites annual license renewal date - which was only three month’s away.

Absolute were asked for our insight into the different platforms available (Woo Commerce, Shopify etc.) and some guidance on general pros / cons, especially given the site was made up of a large number of non-transactional / brochure pages, which were being managed through the Commerce PageBuilder module.

We were able to make a strong case for remaining on the M2 platform, but using our Widget extension approach to replace the PageBuilder module and to ‘downgrade’ to the Opensource version of M2. This meant the business would remain on M2, which was familiar to them and would also give them the option to migrate back to Commerce, once the growth of the businesses online sales warranted this. The schedule for downgrading was a matter of weeks as opposed to the months it would take to replatform, not to mention the higher costs of doing so in the short-term and the associated risks in terms of business interruption.

Furthermore, we were asked to put forward a scope of work for automating Mick George’s Skip Hire business with an automated bespoke ‘skipbuilder’ module, that would fully integrate with the Magento platform.

What we did

Absolute undertook an initial audit of the existing codebase to understand the full scope of the website. From here we were able to identify which third-party modules were being used so we could either approach vendors to agree Open Source licenses, or find like-for-like Open Source equivalents. This also helped establish which Commerce specific functionality was being used so replacements could be found.

Following the downgrade process, changes had to be made at database level due to the different table naming conventions between Magento Commerce and Open Source. Also, in order to ensure the Open Source version was fully secure, an upgrade was undertaken to take the solution from version 2.1.9 to 2.3.3 (the latest version at the time).

Having managed the ‘downgrade’ process, which is an unusual event for most merchants, we are now in a good position to advise other businesses on how to undertake the process successfully.

If your considering moving from Magento Commerce to Open Source, contact us for a bespoke, no-obligation estimate.