As a long-standing Kentico Xperience Gold Partner and Quality Expert, one of the most common queries that we have come across from our clients and other Kentico Xperience users over the years is around Kentico upgrades, more specifically what the key benefits of upgrading are. In this article, we aim to highlight from our experience the key benefits of note and their impact on your Kentico Xperience website.
One of the main benefits of upgrading any software is being able to avail of enhancements that are typically not available on older versions. Kentico Xperience is no different, all major Kentico Xperience releases typically include an extensive range of new features, as well as enhancements for performance, security and stability.
Consequently, the Kentico Xperience Platform continues to evolve through the provision of enhanced features which without a doubt makes it one of the most comprehensive, stable and secure CMS Platforms currently available. Here is just a small sample of the functions and features that have been added in the latest releases:
- GDPR – New Data Protection functionality which assists in protecting your Customer Data
- Responsive Images – Ability to upload device-specific (Desktop, Tablet, Mobile) images
- Search – Improved indexing of Excel files
- Email Template Builder & Preview Mode – Construct Email Templates using reusable Components, Preview your emails before sending
- EMS – Template-based Marketing Campaigns, Extended Email Marketing Reports
- Form Builder – Easily copy/clone your existing Forms
- E-Commerce – Extended Product Classification/Grouping, Flexible Product VAT Management, New Gift Card functionality, Enhanced Google Analytics for E-Commerce
- Integration – Support for SharePoint 2016 Servers
- Performance – Significant performance improvements to the core Platform
- Security – Stronger Password Encryption, Extended Multi-Factor Authentication
A full list of the improvements made to the Kentico Xperience Platform, on a per release basis can be reviewed on the Kentico Xperience website by visiting the following URL https://docs.xperience.io/ and searching for “release notes”.
Bug Fixes and Security Updates
According to a recent report by Juniper Research, the cost of data breaches will increase to over $5 trillion globally by 2024. With this in mind, not content with consistently delivering new features and platform enhancements with each new release, Kentico also typically invest a huge amount of effort in continuing to enhance the performance and security of the platform, as well as addressing any bugs that have been identified. Whilst these improvements don’t typically stand out visibly, they do ensure that the Kentico Xperience Platform continues to remain a highly secure, efficient and optimum solution.
Time and Cost
There tends to be a general misconception that all upgrades are expensive, however, in truth, the amount of effort required to upgrade a Kentico Xperience based solution varies greatly between installations. Relatively straightforward, out-of-the-box implementations tend to take considerably less time to upgrade than those that are heavily customized.
This additional overhead for customized solutions is typically due to functional enhancements to the core Kentico Xperience platform, often including Application Programming Interface (API) changes. So, solutions which integrate with 3rd parties or which widely avail of the Kentico API, typically require a more substantial investment of effort during the upgrade process.
The duration for a Kentico Xperience upgrade project can range anywhere from 10 days to 20+ days, depending on the exact upgrade requirements. This duration includes any time required to set up the Environment/Website locally, apply each upgrade, conduct full regression testing subsequent to each upgrade, apply any fixes required to ensure that the Website remains fully operational and finally deploy the upgraded solution to each environment.
What’s best for your Kentico Xperience website?
Following Kentico’s announcement that the portal engine platform version will not be supported beyond 2023, our advice to our clients has been to upgrade to at least Kentico Xperience version 12 in the interim. This will give you and your organization more time to conduct budgetary planning for the eventual migration onto the Kentico Xperience MVC platform. As new features sets will typically be added with every new release of Kentico’s MVC platform, you’ll also have the added advantage of being able to benefit from a more mature platform down the line.
No matter what your upgrade requirements, you can be assured that the i3 Digital team have the expertise and experience required to ensure a seamless transition to your new, greatly enhanced version of Kentico Xperience.
If you have any questions or need help with your Kentico upgrade, feel free to get in touch with Keith Gutu.
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