When Drupal 6 was released in 2008, it was the best version of Drupal up until then. With easier theming, drag and drop administration, new core modules, and an easy setup, D6 would have been the ideal choice for your business.
But the open source community works hard to better itself and soon came Drupal 7. It was an improvement to D6 with more features and functionalities. But probably the improvements weren’t significant enough for your business to invest in updating your Drupal site.
All of that changed in November 2015 with the release of Drupal 8. A complete rewrite, D8 is written in Symfony, and comes with the Object Oriented Programming (OOP) approach. Unlike previous releases, D8 is an MVC based framework, which means faster sites, and an easily scalable architecture. With all functionality streamlined into four key modules, the significant addition to Views module to core, and support for over 100 languages, it’s safe to say Drupal 8 packs quite a punch.
Should I Upgrade to Drupal 8?
But the question remains, does it make sense for you to invest in a Drupal 6 to 8 migration?
The answer is: Yes
Because this time, it is not just about choosing to forego certain functionalities. This time around, not upgrading could leave you vulnerable to performance and security issues, along with rising cost of maintenance.
The most decisive factor is that the community has already declared Drupal 6 as end-of-life, with no further support for bug fixes, patches, or documentation.
Here’s a quick checklist of why a Drupal 6 to 8 migration is necessary for your enterprise:
Does Drupal 8 make Business Sense?
Apart from the technical superiority of Drupal 8, a Drupal 6 to 8 migration also unlocks specific advantages for various stakeholders at your enterprise.
For Business Owners
A 1 second delay in page loading can cause a 7% drop in conversion rates. So Drupal 8 makes sure there are no delays. Here’s how:
Cache Tags: This makes caching more efficient and includes Cache Context API which provides context-based caching. Pages load faster while ensuring that visitors always see the latest version of your site.
BigPipe: Also built into Drupal core is the BigPipe module that helps you deliver personalized content with the fastest page load time possible. BigPipe determines what parts of your web page are static and sends that instantaneously. The dynamic portion of your page--the parts that are personalized--are sent next. The net result is a much faster experience for your website visitors.
A large percentage of Internet users are now on mobile, and there is constant push by Google to grant advantages to mobile friendly sites. As such, Drupal 8’s native mobile-first approach can bring in significant improvements in your search engines rankings and user experience, leading to increased conversions.
For Content Authors and Publishers
Being a CMS, content is the core of Drupal 8, with easy workflows for authors, curators, and publishers. Here’s what’s new:
Client-side Editor: Most exciting improvement in Drupal 8 is the addition of a WYSIWYG module, allowing you to integrate any editor of your choice with the Drupal CMS
Views in core: The Views module is now added in core, which provides great flexibility by enabling you to display any content in whatever format you require
SEO Friendly: There is no ignoring SEO, and Drupal 8 makes it easy for marketing teams to boost inbound traffic. Drupal’s taxonomy system automatically creates a page for tags that are optimized for search engines by adding the page to the XML sitemap and updating it when changes are made.
Content Personalization: Customers are coming to expect streamlined, end-to-end, digital experiences and the companies who fail to provide this are increasingly at a competitive disadvantage. Drupal 8 helps you quickly deploy various types of digital content and campaigns that span multiple segments and channels. It allows you to define customer segments, create custom content, and deliver it in real time on any device.
As you can see, with a host of technology and business advantages, Drupal 8 has significant, demonstrable ROI. And it is not just the fact that migrating your site will give your enterprise a faster, customized, more immersive digital platform. You also have to keep in mind the fact that not migrating can hamper your ability to meaningfully engage your customers.
Srijan has already carried out Drupal 6 to 8 migration for the OPEN Magazine, and several other enterprises. And we can do the same for you. So let’s get the conversation started on how to migrate your enterprise site from Drupal 6 to Drupal 8.