Creating a plan for product information integrations and migration requires a deep understanding of customer data and thorough documentation. This section of Gorilla Group’s Ecommerce Replatforming Checklist explains how to set a successful foundation for data migration during your replatform so that both launch and post-launch initiatives run smoothly.
Document and Map Data Sources
Enabling product information to flow seamlessly across channels is a foundational step in digital transformation. However, creating, maintaining, and leveraging product data throughout its lifecycle is not a one-time project, but a complex, ongoing program. Having a single system of record with thoughtful processes and technical guardrails developed to enable ongoing integrity is crucial. While Master Data Management (MDM) mainly revolves around product data, it’s important to include strategy around existing customer, sales, payment and order data. Be sure to map out all systems and data types, both current and future, during replatforming planning.
Plan for Data Migration
Prior to determining your migration approach, identify the data you intend to migrate. Cleanse your data by removing duplicate records, incomplete sets, and centralize disparate legacy data systems to ensure data is accurate, actionable, relevant, and consolidated. Inventory migration data, accounting for who owns it, where it lives (on the new platform or external system), and how its accessed. Consider migrating data incrementally to allow users and stakeholders to view the sample sets and correct any issues upfront, making it easier to identify areas for development if necessary.
Finalize Scope and Integrations
Survey and document an integration matrix including all third party integrations in the ecommerce ecosystem to ensure all integrations are accounted for. Investigate whether each third party provider (i.e. payment processor, marketing automation, merchandising engine, personalization, analytics) offers a pre-built connector to the ecommerce platform, being mindful that if they do not, additional enhancements are likely. While evaluating service providers to select the best solution, be sure to review any existing contracts prior to making changes, as some service providers may provide an additional fee to license a new connector.
After a formal requirements gathering stage, lockdown project scope and convey to program stakeholders the importance of minimizing scope changes unless absolutely necessary. Regardless of the development methodology used, a failure to finalize project scope will negatively affect the entire project. Verify that platform configurations match those outlined in the functional specifications. Turn off or delay configuration of any functionality not needed for initial launch.
Investigate Architecture Options for Scalability
Select a hosting environment that’s properly configured for your future ecommerce platform. Hosting infrastructure and configuration, auto-scaling cloud based environments, and Content Delivery Networks (CDN) often play a significant role in site performance. Work with your provider to ensure the proper configuration is in place and load testing is performed prior to launch.
“With commerce platforms becoming more robust in functionality beyond just a “shopping cart”, its reach and influence within a company’s existing technology landscape is becoming wider. Lines of traditional applications are blurring as large software companies are acquiring and integrating smaller, specialized software at a rapid pace. When replatforming it is important to understand the selected commerce technology platform roadmap and what that carries in terms of capabilities.” – Chris Kostakis, Chief Technology Officer
- Map existing data. Identify and cleanse data to be migrated.
- Document system integration requirements and related customizations.
- Define and lock down project scope and related system functionality.
Download the full ecommerce replatforming checklist for dozens of tips covering Planning & Strategy, Business Enablement, User Experience, Content & SEO, Data, Development & Architecture, Site Security, and Launch/Post-Launch Activities.