Every e-commerce platform has its pros and cons, but sometimes the one you choose in the beginning doesn’t grow along with your brand. What are your options when you set up your online store with WooCommerce, and then you realize that Shopify would give you the control you need over your site and a better app ecosystem to support your brand's growth?
You make the switch. WooCommerce to Shopify. But the bummer is that most of the time, it’s not as easy as flipping a switch. There’s product data to migrate over. Design customization to adjust. Apps and widgets to transition.
That’s a lot to consider for any e-commerce owner.
When Dr. Stephen Cabral, ND made the decision to move his online shop, Equilibrium Nutrition, from WooCommerce over to Shopify, he worked with Growth Spark to make it an easy process.
An E-Commerce Platform for a Natural Health and Wellness Doctor
At the age of 17, Dr. Stephen Cabral, ND faced severe health complications that led him to 50 different doctors and more than 100 treatment protocols. But it wasn’t until he met an “alternative” doctor that he found the path to recovery.
The experience was a catalyst for him to spend the next twenty years completing his doctoral degree in Naturopathy, completing dozens of certifications in the natural health field, and studying the very best of natural medicine from all over the world.
Dr. Cabral built a natural health and wellness practice in Boston, Massachusetts, which is dedicated to helping others rebalance their bodies and renew their health.
To reach more people than he can through his practice, Dr. Cabral built Equilibrium Nutrition, a website and e-commerce store that sells the at-home functional medicine labs and nutritional supplements that he uses in his practice.
He initially launched Equilibrium Nutrition on the WooCommerce platform, but after a while, Dr. Cabral and his team grew unhappy with the platform’s performance, back-end management, and shopping cart functionality. They wanted to transition the site to a Shopify backend while maintaining the same design and site structure.
A Natural Transition: Moving Equilibrium Nutrition from WooCommerce to Shopify
The two-month project started with a pre-built theme, onto which the Growth Spark team built extensive tweaks and custom work to create the look and functionality that matched Equilibrium Nutrition's previous site.
The product pages received additional space for more detailed, “tabbed” product descriptions, and product SKUs were updated across the site.
The end result is a site that looks and feels exactly like the old site did, with a few practical improvements and a backend that works much better for Dr. Cabral and his team.
Things to Consider Before Moving Your Site From WooCommerce to Shopify
If you are considering migrating your online shop from another platform like WooCommerce over to Shopify, it will be helpful to think through a few key questions before jumping in feet-first:
- Why do you want to change your site platform? What isn’t working, and what works well?
- Do you want your site to look the same, or do a redesign?
- What kind of functionality do you need/want?
- What are your goals for your new website?
- What are your resource constraints? (i.e. budget or launch dates)
- Are there existing integrations (apps, widgets, etc.) that need to be carried over?
- Will existing data need to be migrated? What condition is that data in?
Whether you decide to undertake the transition yourself, or you enlist help (like Growth Spark provides), moving an e-commerce site from one platform to another is a major project. It can help to think of it in several phases, each of which may require different people and resources.
A general outline to get you started would include:
- Timeline: Start with a hard launch date, if you have one, and work backward to figure out your start date. Or if you have some flexibility in your launch timeline, choose a good time period to start (avoiding major holidays, other company launches, and other significant dates) and plan your way forward to a launch date.
- Design: Will you keep the same look and feel, or use this as an opportunity to refresh your brand with a new design?
- Copy: Everything from product descriptions to branded messaging and homepage banners will need to be recreated in the new platform. Do you want to use the same copy, give it a little refresh, or do extensive rewrites?
- Data Transfer Process: A site’s product data can become messy over time, with multiple revisions and changes. Take into account the process of filtering through everything and cleaning up product data, including updating SKUs if necessary.
- Quality Check: Even the most skilled developers will find bugs on their new sites - its inevitable. The key is to find them and fix them before your customers find them. Don’t forget to test with all of the different browsers that your customers use.
- Learning to use Shopify: Getting all the settings configured, figuring out how to add products and collections, and editing content will all take some time at first. Every platform backend is different, so expect it will take some trial and error to get comfortable with your new platform.
For Dr. Cabral, moving to Shopify has been a huge improvement. It’s easier to use, and the migration process was relatively smooth and easy. His new Equilibrium Nutrition site makes it easier to share his expertise, experience, tools, and products with a wider audience and help even more people achieve renewed health.
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