Magento 2 vs Magento 1: Upgrade for Better eCommerce Performance

February 15, 2023
Table of content


In this article, I’ll guide you through the major differences between Magento 1 and Magento 2 that will allow you understand each version better and get a clear idea, if you are planning to launch your e-commerce store on either version. This guide will help you answer all the comparison related questions between the two versions of the Magento platform. 

Although Magento 1 has built a loyal following, it wasn't without its problems. Magento 2 was released to fix some of those issues but was met with mixed reviews itself.

Magento 1 and Magento 2 are not singular variants of Magento, adding to the possible ambiguity. Magento also has Enterprise Editions. Unlike Magento Community Version (now open-source Magento), the Enterprise version is not available for free. The high price tag, however, comes with the benefits of deployment, setup, and technical support for bigger companies.

Lets start with a few global usage statistics of Magento.

Magento Usage Statistics

These 2020 Magento statistics are intended to familiarize you with important platform-related aspects including its global use, popularity growth, and the key reasons behind this growth.

Magento has been a member of Adobe since mid-2018, and resources from the parent company are expected to draw on the strengths of the platform and make it an even bigger ecommerce trend. There is a fair chance that your company will also profit from Magento.

On average, merchants who use Magento grow 3 times faster

  • Magento empowers 1.2 percent websites on the internet
  • This constitutes 12 percent of all ecommerce websites
  • Or 1.9% of the CMS market
  • These figures are likely to rise as the adoption of Magento almost doubled between 2017 and 2018
  • More than 250,00 active sites use Magento, to be precise
  • Of those just 11,000 runs on Magento 2

Magento 1 Vs Magento 2 Essential Differences

  • Architecture
  • Speed & Performance
  • Extensions
  • Dashboard
  • SEO
  • Security
  • Pricing
  • Support
Feature Magento 1.0+ Magento 2.0+
API Integration Added Retroactively API is Core to the Technology
Architecture Flexible New Architecture for Speed
Open Source Yes Yes
Front-end Library No Ships with LESS
PHP Version Legacy PHP (5.6+ / 7.0) Native Support for PHP 5.6+ / 7.0
HTML5/CSS3 No Support for HTML5/CSS3 Native Support for HTML5/CSS3
Responsive Design RWD Theme Included RWD Theme Included
Content Staging Weak Advanced
Search Sub-Par (SOLR) Elastic Search (Commerce Edition)
PayPal Integration External In-Site PayPal Experience
Payment Security Secure Bridge PCI Compliance Hosted Fields
Video Features Minimal Integrated Video (PDP)
Cache Full Page Cache (EE) FPC (Commerce Edition)/Varnish
Database Locking Severe Issues Zero Table Locking (Checkout)
Automated Testing Decent Improved Automated Tests
JavaScript Library JS - Prototype JS - jQuery
Admin Panel Stale (Backoffice) Fresh New Design in Admin
Data Grid No Customizable Data Grid for Catalog
Admin Responsiveness Non-Responsive Responsive Admin Panel
Pricing Model License-Based (EE) Order Volume-Based (Commerce Edition)
Project Cycle 5-12 Months Claimed 4-8 Months
Checkout Process Legacy Streamlined
Payment/Shipping Popular Methods Same Payment & Shipping Methods
Extension Market "Wild West" Rigorous Extension Testing
Store Connection Connect Store New "Marketplace"


A widely mentioned problem was the store performance in Magento 1. In Magento 2 this was taken care of. This major shift is the result of introducing a bunch of advanced technologies such as Apache, Symfony, Nginx 1.7, and even Composer.

Simply put, Magento 2 supports the latest versions of PHP, which implement improved security protections and increase the speed of the online store.

Speed and Performance: Magento 1 Vs Magento 2

Thanks to caching (Varnish) and database optimization, Magento is superior to its rivals on the page load speed or query execution time. This is also a significant improvement on Magento 2 that many Magento 1 users face.

  • Magento 2 supports the new PHP version (starting with PHP 5.5x), which also includes PHP 7. These updates provide security patches, as well as new upgrades.
  • In Magento 2 the loading time is from 2 to 3 seconds faster than the regular edition. Magento 2 loads homepage pages, category pages, and product pages in less than 1.5 seconds, even without using the caching tool.
  • Page information is shown more easily. Users won't have to wait when browsing the main content to load the entire website.
  • On the server-side, a module for clearing the Cache is added to Magento 2. Thus users should not install a 3rd party module as they did in Magento 1.
  • Magento 2 minimizes and bundles JavaScript, thereby reducing unwanted customer activity.
  • Compress photos: Magento 2 creates tools to compress images directly on the server, rather than manually on Magento 1.
  • Improved the method of managing the cache using the static content.

Summary: In Magento 2 load speed is an obvious difference factor. Magento 2 provides a much greater load speed than Magento 1. This is because Magento provides full-page caching in both the Community and Business versions.

Note: Magento 2 has substantial improvements, the store performance would still need to be proactively optimized. It is also important to remember that the consistency of the Magento hosting impacts the overall performance of the store considerably. The new technology helps a little, but if you don't use quality hosting, your performance of the store will suffer.


There are several third-party extensions available on the Magento 1 market. However, even for experienced developers, installing Magento 1 extension will take a great deal of time. Also, conflicts between the Magento 1 extensions are manually resolved which takes time and effort.

For Magento 2, the plugins allow code to overlap core code instead of overriding code. Therefore, the process has become more straightforward as well as the development of the frontend, and thanks to HTML5, Less, require.js, and CSS3 the layout can be changed easier too.


Unlike the cluttered design of Magento 1, the Magento 2 admin panel is more intuitive, user-friendly, and interactive, with a clean, sleek interface. As a result, shop owners with little technological experience can easily run their Magento 2 stores.

Magento 2 has a robust dashboard, displaying previous, current and average orders, lifetime retail revenue, keywords for top search, income tax, and bestsellers. It is easy to search for details, and more convenient to navigate to Magento 2 menus.


SEO is one of the online stores vital factors; you ll never forget to set up SEO on your website. For that, you can get an expert SEO consultancy from a renowned SEO agency for more result-oriented practices, when it comes to Magento. Magento 1.X gets some bugs in SEO, and most of them are patched in Magento 2 while developing. Magento 2 ‘s popular SEO Features include:

  • Duplication Content: Magento 2 includes a Canonical tag to prevent content duplication. It is located at Stores > Setup > Inventory > Inventory > Optimization of search engine.
  • HTML Sitemap: Magento 2 doesn't support HTML Sitemap development. To solve the problem, you can install Mage plaza SEO.
  • XML Sitemap: XML sitemap is a file containing location information about all the web pages and assets. Go to Store > Settings > Setup > Catalog > XML Sitemap to allow the XML sitemap.
  • Alt Product Photos: Adding alt photos to product images can also help improve search engine rankings. Go to Catalog > Products > pick one Product > add Alt in the field Images and Videos.
  • Robots.txt File: Enable webmasters to be more versatile in enabling search engine (SE) robots to index the website pages and content. Go to Content > Design > Configuration > Edit one Store > Search Engine Robots to change your Robots.txt in Magento 2.
  • Meta Title, Meta Definition, Meta Keyword: Magento 2 enables administrators to add Meta tags for each Product and Category. 
  • Search Engine Friendly URLs: The easiest way to allow SEO-friendly URLs is to go to Stores > Configuration > General > Site > Search Engine Optimization and turn on Web Server Rewriting.
  • Mobile-Friendly: Magento 2 is excellently optimized for the Mobiles. It is also a ranking factor.


Users are highly worried about their data protection and are reluctant to purchase from an ecommerce store that they don't believe in.

Since Magento 1's official support ended on 30 June 2020, there has been a rise in the number of attacks and vulnerabilities after the release of the last security patch.

On the other hand, not only has Magento 2 enhanced performance but it has robust protection and stability as well. The hashing algorithms for passwords (SHA-256) have been improved, and as a result, passwords are now more resilient to the known types of attacks.


The community edition of Magento is Free to use. There is a difference between the two versions.

  • Magento EE license cost: starts at $18,000/year
  • Cost of Magento 2 EE: starts at $22,000/year


Magento 1 was developed back in 2009 using the technology available back then. Magento will support Magento 1 until 30 June 2020 and will stop updating and issuing security updates after the deadline. 

By comparison, Magento 2 supports all recent developments in ecommerce and online markets, such as voice search, speed & efficiency improvements, UI / UX, AI, and lean application footprint. The dev team continues to add features like page builder, PWA integration, advanced reporting, expanded cache support, and automated code management.

Why Should You Upgrade to Magento 2? 

The above-discussed factor must have answered this question. If not, then feel free to get in touch with us for consultation.

You must upgrade for the support, better User-Interface and User-Experience, fast-loading, sleek dashboard,  and overall upgraded platform your business deserves.

How Much Does It Cost to Upgrade to Magento 2?

Magento 2 is slightly more expensive than Magento 1. The price is around $22,000 per year compared to $18,000 per year for Magento 1, complemented by free community editions.

An important question to ask is whether the cost of upgrading from Magento 1 to Magento 2 is worth its value. The answer eventually boils down to your needs, the number of transactions, the inventory size you are showcasing, traffic, SEO significance, and the importance of user-experience. 

But we will argue, YES, it is. Magento 2 will make your e-commerce website faster, scalable, and will contribute to more transactions. A recent update by google tells us that the user experience and load time are two of the most critical factors for SEO ranking. 

Magento 2’s price is accompanied by advantages of installation, customized configuration, and technical support for companies planning on using it.


If you are planning long-term, then you must not think too much about migrating the Magento 2 as it provides all the right resources and tools to help your e-commerce become a successful one. 

Magento 2 is a product of a decadeas experience and wisdom of Adobe, who acquired Magento in 2018.

Let me know in the comments sections below about your experience with Magento and which of its features are your favorite.  

Get free Consultation!

Book your free 40-minute
consultation with us.

Do you have a product idea that needs validation?
Let's have a call and discuss your product.