Whether we like it or not, change is coming and you will want to pay attention before it arrives. With the release of Drupal 8 beta, we are one step closer to its full release. Once released, we will be at the end of life for the long-lived and hard working Drupal 6 platform, which means no more bug or security releases for core or contributed modules.
Fortunately, you have several options for updating, migrating or reworking your site. Best of all you don’t have to wait, you can get started today.
Option 1 – Migrate to Drupal 7
This will make your site future proof for another 3-5 years or until Drupal 9 is released. It is relatively straight-forward but can be a bit tricky and at times costly. The deciding factors for how easy or hard a migration is dependent on the number of contributed or custom modules and the features of your current site.
Those who have fairly straight forward content only sites will have a much easier and less costly time migrating from 6 to 7. Those using e-commerce or other involved and configuration heavy features may be better off redesigning and developing a new site from the ground up using exported content.
Option 2 – Migrate to Drupal 8
This option is allegedly going to be much easier than going from 6 to 7 as migration will be a core feature included with the Drupal 8. I say allegedly as it has yet to be released and thus proven, but I expect that the majority of promises in regards to this feature will be kept.
That said I would still expect the same situation of advanced or involved features needing to be reviewed and evaluated for migration or redevelopment.
Option 3 – Redesign and develop the site in Drupal 7 or 8
In most cases this is the option that we would recommend. More than likely your Drupal 6 site is more than 5 years old. That is a LONG time in the world wide web. And while your site has undoubtedly served you well it is more than likely NOT up to date with current best practices in markup language, mobile friendliness or usability.
Option 4 – Redesign and develop the site on an alternate content management system ( CMS )
While many of you will find the new features in Drupal 7 and 8 an improvement over your current site, you may not know of the alternate choices out there. The CMS and e-commerce world has changed a great deal in the past seven years. Your site may be better suited on an alternate platform such as WordPress for content-driven marketing sites or Magento for e-commerce driven sites.
So what is right for you and your web site?
It all depends on what your site goals and needs are, and Fuzzy Duck would be happy to review those with you to help you discover the correct path.