Magento 2 migration involves migration of the following components:

  • Data Migration,
  • Extensions & Custom Code migration,
  • Themes and customizations migration

In the previous blog, we saw how Extensions and Custom Code get migrated from Magento 1 to Magento 2 and the role a Code Migration Toolkit plays in achieving the same. Now let us explore in detail how themes get migrated to the updated platform Magento 2

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What is Magento 2 Theme Migration all about?

In the Magento migration process, theme migration is one of the most elementary phases, asking you to have a piece of strong knowledge and experience to transfer it effectively. Magento 2 has established new methodologies and technologies for delivering enhanced shopping and store experience to the merchants and users. Developers can take advantage of new ways of creating unique Magento 2 themes or modify the current ones to make them compatible with the Magento 2 standards.

As both Magento 1 and Magento 2 vary vastly on a structure level – so it’s not possible to directly migrate your Magento 1 theme to Magento 2. To upgrade Magento 1 theme to Magento 2, you will have to check if Magento 1 theme is compatible with Magento 2 version or not. You can also select some pre-built Magento 2 themes from the Magento 2 marketplace.

Facts about Theme Migration from Magento 1 to 2

  • We can’t migrate Magento 1 theme to Magento 2 instead we are supposed to develop a new one that has the same appearance or design a new website.
  • It is costly to migrate themes from Magento 1 to 2- As you might know, in order to migrate the extensions from Magento 1 to Magento 2; we must discard and replace all current Magento 1 modules and plugins with the new ones for Magento 2 having the same functions.

The process is not always a challenge, for some retailers, this chance can be utilized to improve their site design.

Magento 2 Theme development & customization

The theme is a component of Magento 2 which gives a consistent look and feel to your whole store. It provides an improved look to areas like Magento 2 Admin and Storefront by utilizing a combination of custom templates, designs, styles or images development. Here are the list of steps you need to follow for theme development.

Create a directory for the theme and add a declaration for theme.  Then add composer.json & registration.php file. After that, create directories for CSS, JavaScript, images, and fonts. The next steps include:

  • Setting up a theme logo
  • Customizing theme layout
  • Configuring your theme in the Admin panel &
  • Final Deployment.

Magento Customization

Under this section we will take a look at Customization of a theme using templates: Templates define exactly how the content of layout blocks is presented on a page: order, CSS classes, elements grouping, and so on. In most cases, templates do not contain any logic about whether they will or will not be rendered; this is typically handled by the layout files. Once a template is called in a layout, it will be displayed.

To customize a template:

  1. Locate the template which is associated with the page/block you want to change using template hints.
  2. Copy the template to your theme folder according to the template storing convention.
  3. Make the required changes

5 Solutions to Migrate Themes from Magento 1 to 2 are as follows

Download and install a free theme for Magento 2.

  • Purchase and implement a Ready-made Magento 2 theme.
  • Create a new design depending on the existing Magento 1 theme.
  • Build a new look based on your favorite e-commerce website.
  • Create a unique theme for your Magento 2 store from the scratch.

Offerings in Magento 2 Theme

  • It offers support for HTML and CSS.
  • It has built-in LESS processor.
  • It provides an asynchronous module to upload using Require JS without manual coding.
  • It uses jQuery UI.
  • It consumes Magento UI library for a flexible rendering of UI.


Under theme migration, you may also create your own theme and make it user-responsive, but it’s wise to reserve to it only in case you are certain you will manage to do it with your own forces. Furthermore, if you are skeptical about Magento store migration process, it’s better to hire a reliable Magento development company to conduct the transfer from the beginning to the end.

It’s no doubt that Magento 2 has surpassed its previous versions in the store design, performance, functionality and user experience, which create a strong motivation to upgrade to Magento 2.

Learn more about our Magento expertise here Magento Miniseries.

Aspire Systems is a Magento Business Solution Partner. Get in touch with our in-house experts to discuss Migration to Magento 2.0.