Why should I upgrade?
Like everything in the software world, Joomla undergoes major upgrades for several reasons, including new and improved ways of programming, shifts in browser technology, and requirements for added security. Upgrading means keeping up with the latest in website features and technology and browser support. Beyond that, you should upgrade because you can re-envision your site to accomplish your new goals and priorities in 2012 and into 2013.
When should I upgrade?
Joomla 1.5 will continue to function for you as it has in the past. Because there won't be any further support for 1.5, however, we encourage you strongly to budget, plan, and schedule your Joomla 2.5 migration as soon as possible. We encourage all of our clients to analyze their websites about every other year anyway. Things change on the internet quickly and we all need to keep improving the content and features that we deliver to our audience. This normal cycle should bring most of you operating on Joomla 1.5 to make a natural transition time-wise by the end of 2013.
What does this mean from a content standpoint?
If you have been wanting to do some major reorganization to your menu navigation or refining some content organization, now is the time. This is a great opportunity to slim down and condense and dejunk. User-friendly navigation and access to information should drive this analysis. If you are tied to your current content, however, we can always migrate content as is.
What does this mean from a design standpoint?
The 2.5 platform uses a different template structure so the upgrade process involves rebuilding and redesigning templates. You can think of this as a great opportunity to review and refresh your website design and layout and how your content and features are positioned. Websites, unlike print, are always a work in progress.
What does this mean from a technical standpoint?
The upgrade process involves migrating all existing content and data from 1.5 to 2.5. If you have donation forms, calendars, event registration, directories, or other interactive features running on the site, we migrate those as well and rebuild those features where needed. In some cases, there are significant feature improvements available in 2.5 that are not available in 1.5. If it's time to implement a blog or membership system or other features, or conversely, if it's time to retire a feature that you don't use, this is a good time to recommit and refocus.
What new features should I consider implementing?
- Mobile templates, while not necessary for everyone, should be part of your analysis. Smart phone and iPad adoption is on the rise, and if your website visitors are among the demographic who use these with any regularity, a mobile template may be appropriate.
- Social networking has only broadened in the past couple of years. Depending on the tools that your organization uses (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Vimeo, etc.), we may be able to integrate these in a more seamless manner.
- Video has become an increasing part of the internet landscape, but dealing with video still can be intimidating for some of us. There are many new tools within Joomla to make this easier to deal with.
What will this cost?
Every website is slightly different so it's hard to give one number to cover everyone. We take your wish-list, additional features, retired features, design needs, and anything else you tell us about what you want to see in a revised version of your site into account to provide you with an estimate.
Why isn't this part of my regular annual support?
As you can see from the extensive nature of the tasks involved to upgrade to Joomla 2.5 (data migration, feature rebuilding, and template redesigning), we do not include this major upgrade as part of our annual support that relates to Joomla updates. This upgrade is essentially a website redesign and rebuilding project which is much different from installing security patches and making the regular updates that we do. We value your loyalty and business, and we want you to upgrade so that we can continue to support you with the best and latest tools, so we try to price accordingly to provide you the most cost effective route to having a modern, robust, and secure website.
What does all of this mean to you?
In short, it means that you could consider upgrading within the year or so.
What if I don't upgrade?
Joomla 1.5 has been a stable and robust release. Your site should continue to work and function as usual and could very well continue to work just fine for many more years. However, it will become difficult for us to add new features to your site as new plugins and extensions will soon no longer be compatible with version 1.5. And if a security flaw is found down the line, there is no guarantee that the Joomla developers will release a patch.
To upgrade, what are the next steps?
Please complete our Joomla Upgrade Questionnaire so that we can assist you with this process. You will want to also consider the following:
- Review your website navigation and content. Decide if the site outline works as is or needs some revision. Decide if your current content showcases and positions your organization in the best way possible. You might even be in a position to survey users outside your organization to get some fresh eyes on how your website operates and what it delivers.
- Review existing features to see if you are using them or if they are accomplishing their purposes.
- Make a wish-list of additional features you would like to see in a website revision.
You can contact us at any time with questions about this process.