Should you switch from Ektron to Episerver?

Should you switch from Ektron to Episerver?

If your digital services are built on the Ektron platform, you’ll already know about its merger with Episerver.

What does that mean for you? Should you consider switching? Is there an optimum time to make the switch? And how can you ensure that migration to the new platform won’t take forever and eat up resource you don’t have? Here’s our guide to making – and timing – the decision.

What does the Episerver/Ektron merger mean for you?

When Ektron merged with Episerver in 2016, Episerver made the commitment to support the platform for the foreseeable future. So if your digital services are currently on an Ektron platform, you needn’t worry that they’re suddenly about to disappear. But “support” is not the same thing as development.

For any digital business, success comes not only from doing what the customer expects now, but from responding to – and even leading – customer expectations in the future. That’s where you’re likely to feel the impact of the merger first. Because as time passes and digital platforms like Episerver head off in new directions, offering new customer opportunities, there’s a danger Ektron will begin to feel like the Betamax at a 4K party.

Should you consider switching to Episerver?

Given the above, we’re naturally going to say yes. It doesn’t necessarily need to be a mad scramble (unless you’re reading this in 2019 or later in which case it probably does need to be a mad scramble) but a switch to Episerver probably should be something to factor into the development cycle over the next 12-18 months.

Even if you were to switch tomorrow, you would quickly see benefits, with access to features that don’t (and won’t) appear on Ektron. These include:

  • Greater security
  • Flexible, feature-rich e-commerce capabilities
  • On-page editing
  • Powerful content personalisation and multichannel interactions
  • Content previews across multiple devices
  • No editor or account limit
  • Designed for native mobile-first

Is there an optimum time to switch to Episerver?

Switching to Episerver presents a major opportunity. After all, why create the same, when you can build better? And why migrate and then rebuild when you can cut costs and time by combining the two? So the migration to Episerver is best done at a time when you’re also seeking to:

  • Realign your business objectives to audience needs
  • Review your user experience and optimum path
  • Exploring add-ons (e.g. Find, Peerius etc.) to enhance your digital offering

How do you make Episerver migration swift and painless?

Like any system change, it’s easier when you have a tried and tested process created by a partner who’s well versed in delivering it. At Amaze, for example, we’ve developed a customizable methodology that makes simultaneously switching platform, enhancing your customers’ experience, and taking advantage of Episerver’s benefits simple. Amongst the factors we include are:

  1. Content audit, migration and workflows – We analyse and evaluate existing content against business requirements to determine what needs keeping, what needs repurposing, and what needs to be jettisoned.
  2. License switch – We work with clients and Episerver to ensure they get the best licensing option for current and future business needs.
  3. Integrations – Analytics, CRM and the advanced Episerver Find search functions are all included as standard but we use this stage to explore the other bespoke integrations and commerce functions (ERP etc.) required as part of the customisation.
  4. Technical considerations: We work through a (very) lengthy checklist that encompasses things like cross-browser compliance, mobile optimisation, MVP architecture, user acceptance testing, functional testing and quality assurance.
  5. Change management – Your team will need to be ready for go-live. CMS training and guides (including CMS conversion tools) make that process a simple, standardised one. Often, we’ll also add digital maturity mapping for internal teams as a way of ensuring everyone is at the same stage by launch date.

To this list we also add the support and guidance you’ll inevitably need during such a significant change. The Amaze team have been working with Episerver for 14+ years and are an Episerver Global Partner, so we’re particularly capable of not only providing the technical support aspect of an Episerver switch, but also of ensuring that the move adds value. That is, after all, the real goal in any switch.

Using this sort of methodology, migration to Episerver (and realising all its additional benefits) doesn’t have to involve a big, multi-year project. We’ve done this sort of thing within 6 months, turning a platform with lots of potential into a platform that really delivers.

Want to talk about your Ektron platform and what happens next? Get in touch.