How to Plan for 2022: The Ultimate eCommerce Upgrade Checklist
It’s the start of a new year, which means that it’s time to start mapping out future projects with your eCommerce team. Preparing for 2022 early can help you determine your budget, when to begin certain eCommerce upgrade projects, and what needs to be done to reach your business goals.
No matter which eCommerce platform you use, it’s crucial to plan your updates and upgrades ahead of time. This will reduce potential downtime, security risks, poor performance, and other side effects that can arise from outdated technology. This checklist is designed to keep your platform performing at its best so you can reach your objectives in 2022. Consider looking it over every quarter to reevaluate what your team needs to do to ensure ongoing success.
This checklist should be read and approved by the following people in your organization:
- Director or Manager of IT
- eCommerce Manager
- Solution Partner or Consultant
1. Review extensions and customizations
Check your current extensions, applications, and customizations to make sure they’re still required. If any of these items are outdated or are rarely used, uninstall or remove them. If an application is outdated but is still useful for your team, consider replacing it with a similar third-party extension.
2. Vet your team
Are all of your team members knowledgeable about the most recent version of your eCommerce platform? Will your team require additional help from other professionals during a future upgrade? Consider if it would be beneficial to invest in additional training for your employees.
3. Create a budget and timeline
Look up the release calendar for your platform. For instance, the Adobe Commerce release calendar displays when the next upgrade will be ready for users. Refer to the calendar to determine which version of each upgrade you’ll want to use, how long each upgrade will take, and how much it will cost.
4. Plan for deployment
Before jumping into an upgrade project, make sure your team is fully onboard with the budget, timeline, and scope of the plan. If you’re using Adobe Commerce, there are additional tools that can help your team prepare for an upgrade, including the Upgrade Compatibility Tool and the Site-Wide Analysis Tool.
Next, be sure to check and document any changes that will need to be made after the upgrade, such as ElasticSearch versions. It will also be beneficial to:
- Create a plan for communicating with stakeholders.
- Plan a maintenance window if you expect there to be any downtime.
- Ensure that all extensions and customizations are compatible with the upgraded version.
- Review and update the post-deployment plan in case any problems arise during the upgrade.
- Confirm that the testing strategy works using a test framework or third-party tool.
5. Confirm that the upgrade was successful
Post-deployment, be sure to carefully monitor your site for performance or order processing issues. It’s also recommended to perform a security scan to identify any potential security threats or vulnerabilities to your store.
Finally, have a discussion with your stakeholders about what went well, what aspects of the plan didn’t work, and what areas can be improved for the next upgrade. Using this information, modify your plan to have a smoother transition when a new version is released.
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