Table of contents
The ExpressionEngine upgrade guide
Got an old ExpressionEngine site that’s in need of an upgrade? Not sure if it’s worth the time or investment or how long it will take? Or are you in a situation where your ExpressionEngine site version is no longer supported and you need to act fast? We understand that figuring this all out is extremely overwhelming. But it doesn’t have to be!
Below is a look into our step-by-step process in how we approach ExpressionEngine upgrades. Whether you’re tackling an upgrade yourself, looking for a general roadmap, or searching for an agency to help, this should help to give you clarity on our proven approach to how we run ExpressionEngine upgrade projects.
The challenges of neglecting a dated ExpressionEngine site
Like keeping up with your IOS phone updates, hosting providers too are constantly evolving and improving to keep up with technological advances. Hosting providers often sunset support of technology like dated PHP versions. The ExpressionEngine team is constantly addressing these advances, working on providing patches for security exploits or threats, resolving system bugs, and continuously releasing enhancements. Some of the most common challenges faced when abandoning your ExpressionEngine platform:
- Security vulnerabilities: An outdated ExpressionEngine site is a prime target for hackers, putting your sensitive data and reputation at risk.
- Compatibility issues: Over time, your website may become incompatible with modern browsers and devices, resulting in broken features and a frustrating user expe
- Performance declines: Without regular updates, your site can become sluggish, leading to high bounce rates and diminished SEO rankings.
Upgrading your ExpressionEngine site...
- Keeps you secure: Upgrade the latest security patches, fortifying your website against cyber threats and ensuring your data remains safe.
- Gives you better compatibility: An upgraded website is compatible with the latest servers, browsers, and devices, ensuring a seamless user experience for all visitors.
- Improves performance: Experience faster load times, reduced bounce rates, and improved search engine rankings with the latest php versions.
- Gives you the latest enhancements: ExpressionEngine pro comes packed with a TON of features including front-end editing, improved backend editing experience, new fields, better previewing capabilities, and much more.
Here's the step-by-step process to how we approach ExpressionEngine upgrades
Evaluate & audit
First we begin by taking an inventory and audit of your current ExpressionEngine version and landscape, the installed addons, templating code and architecture, and your current hosting and server environment along with site traffic.
Hosting and server specification recommendations:
We use the findings in our evaluation to determine the right technologies to support your website post-upgrade. Based on the latest ExpressionEngine version requirements at the time of the upgrade, along with your current site traffic and security requirements, we’ll scope out the applicable requirements to determine if a new hosting provider and migration is required.
There are variety of hosting providers that play nice with ExpressionEngine. One of our favorites is Cloudways, a fully managed VPS that comes packaged with great support and all the tools you need to easily manage your site’s hosting and server infrastructure.
Platform and addon upgrades:
The next step is to upgrade your addons and ExpressionEngine platform version. This may surface a variety of errors since dated template code may not be compatible with the latest addon versions. We’ll walk through each error step-by-step and leverage any 3rd party addon documentation to resolve all errors when necessary.
Content migration and template adjustments:
After your platform, addons and templates are all functioning, it’s time to migrate your content. This may be a combination of leveraging existing import tools or manual data migration depending on the complexity of how your existing data maps to any new field or data requirements.
QA and testing:
Once your platform, addons and templates are upgraded and error free, a human will manually test each page type for errors and content accuracy. This manual testing process includes a side-by-side comparison of the respective page against the current live site page to ensure all pages are properly working.
Before deploying the updates to your live website, we’ll get the site running in a remote staging environment so you and your team can review for any issues.
Schedule go live date and final content migration
During the time we’ve worked on the website it is likely that your team has been making updates to content and the databases which are no longer the same as the staging environment. We’ll work with your team to plan a content freeze to re-run content migration (if applicable) to ensure the updated site on the staging environment has all the latest changes. After your final review the site is now ready to go live!
A live training will be provided to your content admin team to ensure they are familiar with any new ExpressionEngine interface elements.
Ongoing ExpressionEngine upgrades to keep you site healthy
To ensure your ExpressionEngine website remains up-to-date and optimized, we offer tailored paid plans for ongoing upgrade services. With these plans, you can enjoy peace of mind, knowing your site is in expert hands, always ready to adapt to evolving web technologies and security needs.
Don't let an outdated ExpressionEngine website hold you back. Upgrade with us, and unlock the full potential of your online presence. Experience enhanced security, improved compatibility, and optimized performance, all while enjoying the peace of mind that comes with our ongoing upgrade services. Need more info? See more FAQs about ExpressionEngine upgrade services.
Looking for help to upgrade your ExpressionEngine site?Get your free proposal today
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