The improvements made to Kentico version 8 from version 7 catapulted Kentico’s performance, usability, and marketing features way past any other CMS. As you can imagine, version 10 is even more impressive with its enhancements across the board from marketing to development ease. However, upgrading from version 7 or lower to version 10 can be a daunting task if you are unfamiliar with commonly overlooked details, or if you have a lot of custom integrations. In this post I will provide you with some things to consider when upgrading your Kentico site.
Are you sure you need an upgrade and not a redesign?
Many sites that are on version 7 and lower have not been redesigned for years. Every year, great advancements are made in HTML, CSS, design, and knowledge of user experience. In addition, search engines like Google are always working to improve the SEO requirements so that end users can have a better experience. The SEO optimizations you made to enhance your sites search results a few years ago may not be helping you now! You may have a better return on investment if you consider a redesign so that you can better target your customers as the internet evolves to a more personalized experience for the end user.
Do you really need that feature?
You may have a feature that was developed custom for your site to provide some additional benefit for your clients at the time your version 7 site was developed. It is important to analyze the current usage of that custom feature or integration to determine if it is worthwhile to upgrade it with the site to version 10, if it should be re-developed to meet new requirements, or if it should be removed. Custom code can be difficult to upgrade depending on how it was implemented and may result in weeks of additional upgrade time. So, be sure you need those features before you initiate the upgrade process!
Do you really need that data?
If you are having a difficult time upgrading a simple site that doesn’t have any customizations, or the upgrade is running very slowly, check your settings. If you are maintaining many versions of pages or objects, or if you have analytics turned on and saving years worth of data, you may be causing yourself some unnecessary upgrade headaches. Prior to upgrading you can save yourself some trouble by trimming the fat. Get rid of the versions and analytics, and other online marketing data that you don’t absolutely need to take with you to the new version.
Are you working with a Kentico partner that is knowledgeable and experienced in upgrades?
There are a plethora of things to consider when upgrading a Kentico site from version 7 to version 10. If the site was not developed using best practices, or if it was poorly maintained, it could take weeks for an experienced developer to do a proper and clean upgrade! If you are working with an experienced partner like iMedia (I know, I’m biased), you are more likely to get the best advice on how to proceed with your site and if you do choose to upgrade, it will be a cleaner and better experience. There is a reason why iMedia is a Kentico Gold Partner, and its not just because we are so attractive ;)
These days, your website is the first thing that people will see and judge your business by. If they have a poor experience on your site because it is outdated, broken, or is difficult to use then they may as well have had a bad experience with you personally and it is doubtful that you will get their business. With the proper guidance, your website can become the largest generator of revenue for your company.
Don’t neglect your most important asset! If you need assistance upgrading your Kentico site to version 10, or you want unfiltered, honest advice on how to make the most of your website please don’t hesitate to contact us!