Online business is constantly evolving, user requirements and search engine ranking factors are changing. If you have been running an online store for a long time, then most likely you have already encountered one of these problems:
- Your online store is deployed on a self-written platform. It was no longer supported, there are no modules and themes for it on the market. You cannot update the store.
- Your platform has limited functionality, and it is expensive to modify it.
- Your platform cannot cope with the increased volume of data (items, categories), since it was not originally designed for such a volume.
- The online store cannot cope with the load, and the page loading speed does not meet modern requirements.
- Your online store is not adapted to mobile devices.
- There is no strong online community where it would be convenient to read reviews about modules, themes, or choose developers.
- The site is not optimized for search engines, there are no analytics tools.
- There is no professional team to help you maintain and develop your online store.
If you find yourself on this list, it’s time for your online store to move to a more modern and convenient management system, and CS-Cart will be a great solution. In 2020, it took 2nd place in Russia and the CIS in terms of demand among CMS for creating online stores.
Benefits of CS-Cart:
- convenient administrative panel, where you can flexibly manage business processes;
- all major delivery and payment methods are integrated;
- there are both regular analytics tools and support for Google.Analytics;
- SEO optimized;
- adaptive for mobile devices;
- better protected from vulnerabilities than open source platforms;
- takes into account the requirements of the law;
- there is a strong developer community and a forum with active users;
- contains many more useful features for your online business.
Even the boxed version of CS-Cart has all the necessary functionality to launch a full-fledged online store and start selling. Through a convenient administration panel, you can connect payment systems, set up any delivery method and manage orders flexibly. And the layout editor will give you freedom in managing the design and content of your online store pages.
In this article, we have described three ways to completely transfer an online store to the CS-Cart platform: two on your own and one with the help of specialists.
Option 1: Data transfer using standard export/import
With the help of standard tools built into CS-Cart, it will be possible to transfer the product catalog (products, characteristics and pictures), orders, users and subscribers. Everything else will have to be configured manually: payment methods, delivery, loyalty programs, etc. You will also need to manually integrate third-party services. Due to the difference in the password storage algorithm, some tweaking may be required to restore user profiles.
If you choose this method of moving to CS-Cart, then the procedure will be as follows:
1.Purchase and install a CS-Cart license.
You can read more about all license options and buy the one you like directly in the Cart-Power online store. Each license has links to documentation with installation instructions.
2. Export data from an existing online store.
In your CMS, you will need to go to the data export tool. There, check that the format of the uploaded file is CSV, the encoding is UTF-8, the CSV separator is a semicolon, tab, or comma. As a result of the export, you will get a CSV file that you will need to import into CS-Cart.
3. Transfer images from one server to another.
To quickly find out where the images are located, open the uploaded CSV file and look for the Images column. It contains the path where your store images are stored.
To transfer images:
- Go to the hosting control panel, then go to the file manager. There, find the folder with images, you already have the path to them.
- Select all and download as zip.archive.
- Go to CS-Cart Administration, Files tab.
- Select “Service Files” and download the zip file.
- You will end up with an Images folder. This means that the images are now in CS-Cart.
You can read more about importing images and how to refer to an image in an imported file in the documentation.
4. Import the CSV file into CS-Cart.
- Find the export/import tool in CS-Cart and explore it. This tool is located under Administration, Data Export/Data Import tab.
- Add an import preset. An import preset is a set of rules by which an imported file is processed. It will allow you to match the fields from the uploaded CSV file with the requirements of CS-Cart. The xml file format is also suitable for importing products through presets. Here you can also set the path to the images that you transferred in step 3. Fill in the required data and click “save”.
- The “Settings” tab has many additional options related to importing. Set up whatever you need.
- Click “Import”. If the preset is configured correctly and the data in the imported file is correct, then the products are imported.
You can study each step in detail with screenshots and settings in the documentation.
5. Check the products at the storefront.
Go to the storefront of the online store: check if the catalog and products have loaded correctly, if everything is fine with the characteristics and variations, if the pictures have loaded.
6. Set up payment methods, shipping and everything you need.
You can do this using the tutorials from the CS-Cart user guide.
7. Pay special attention to maintaining the reference mass.
If links change, then you need to generate 301 redirects for all pages so as not to lose positions in the search results.
As you can see, moving to CS-Cart on your own does not require investments, but it is laborious: it takes a lot of time to study the documentation, and then to manually configure the entire site.
Also, the difficulty is that no third-party platform by itself will be able to issue a CSV file for uploading it to CS-Cart in the desired form. This is because different platforms store product data differently and may use entities other than CS-Cart. For example, a product in your platform may have a video gallery, but it cannot be transferred by standard import via a CSV file. Or, for example, the Magento platform never had product options, while CS-Cart, on the contrary, had only options for a long time.
In order to immediately correctly link the data from the old store with the data in CS-Cart, we recommend that you immediately contact the developers when preparing the file for import.
Option 2: moving with the help of a service
To transfer an online store to CS-Cart, you can use the services of a paid online service Cart2Cart . First, as in the first option, you need to buy and install a CS-Cart license. Further, the service itself will transfer all the data, but you will have to configure the online store and connect external services.
Cart2Cart uses the computing power of the Amazon Elastic Cloud (EC2) cloud and supports dozens of CMS:
You can calculate the cost of moving using the online calculator on the main page:
There is also a free demo. You can see how the moving process will work. If everything suits you, you need to register, pay the tariff and start the data transfer.
Briefly, it will look like this:
- Specify the URL of the online store from which you want to transfer data.
- Copy a special file to the directory of the store from which you want to transfer data.
- Specify the URL of the online store where the data will be copied.
- Copy a special file to the store directory where the data will be transferred.
- You move through the stages of moving, answering the questions of the system and filling in the necessary information.
- Start the data transfer process.
- Further, the service will transfer data without your participation.
- It will be possible to control the move and see the results at any time. To do this, you need to log into the service using your username and password.
- Log in to CS-Cart and set up an online store: payment and delivery methods, templates, external services, etc.
More information is available on the Cart2Cart website, including a video tutorial.
The main problem with moving using this service is that only standard data is transferred. If there were custom improvements in the store, additional modules were installed, or you need to keep the corporate identity, the service will not be able to transfer it to CS-Cart, and you still have to contact the developers. Then it is best to immediately use the third option.
Option 3: Moving from Cart-Power
The third and most convenient option is to order a turnkey move from Cart-Power. Then you are guaranteed to get the transfer of all data without loss: from the catalog and content to integration with external services. If necessary, we will set up delivery, payment methods and even redesign. As a result, you will receive a project ready for work.
At the same time, even the position of your site in the SERP will not worsen after its transfer, as we try to transfer data while maintaining links. It happens that the format of links used on the old platform is radically different from CS-Cart, and you can’t just set up a similar format out of the box.
Then there are two ways out:
- Refine CS-Cart in terms of SEO, if it is important for you to keep the links as they are. Accordingly, the budget for moving will increase.
- Set up 301 redirects from old links to their counterparts in CS-Cart, then you can stay within the budget.
Whichever option you choose, search engines will not notice the difference from changing the CMS. Rather, the opposite is true: the site will load faster, therefore it will rank better than before.
How we move:
- We analyze an existing online store: data, design and functionality.
- We describe and agree with you the technical requirements for the new functionality.
- You buy a license for CS-Cart.
- We are installing a working version of the online store on CS-Cart on a test server.
- We transfer there the data that you need.
- We set up an online store on a test server, based on the terms of reference.
- We carry out internal testing. It allows you to ensure that the move was completed correctly and the site is ready to go. First, the tester checks the functionality against test cases. Then the project manager checks the online store for compliance with the terms of reference and the general logic of work.
- You can personally verify that the store is working by also testing it on a test server.
- If everything is fine, we transfer the online store to a live server, having previously updated the data.
During the moving process, we can additionally:
- transfer custom modifications that you had;
- transfer the data of these modifications;
- move or update the design;
- select and install new modules.
The output is not just an online store with data that needs to be carefully configured (as in the first and second options for moving), but an online store completely ready for launch. Everything is checked in it: data, functionality, external services. Operational problems are excluded, as the site is fully configured and tested.
All you need to do is fill out a relocation brief. Our specialist will contact you, offer a suitable option and orient the price.
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