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SharePoint online migration

What is SharePoint Online Migration?

Are you looking for the best strategies for your SharePoint Online migration? If so, it helps to explore the best practices for migrating to the online version.

Usually, organizations opt for migrating content from your existing SharePoint site or a third-party document library to SharePoint Online.

Organizations migrate their data online to reap the benefits associated with the latest collaboration and productivity tools. The choice of SharePoint Migration varies based on your specific needs, strategies, and direction.

If you need to review the entire SharePoint Migration process, check out The Definitive SharePoint Migration Guide and Checklist.

Why do you need to migrate?

Microsoft is known for its ability to upgrade its SharePoint Online platform continuously. Every new platform comes with better features. You can access your SharePoint anywhere and anytime on the cloud.

1. Increased Collaboration

SharePoint helps your employees centralize your document administration to increase the collaborative spirit between your team. The shift to remote working in the past few years is a tremendous boon to any organization.

The Online version offers users flexible access on their desktop, tablet, and mobile devices.

SharePoint Collaboration

2. Enterprise-Level Security

The enhanced security features developed in newer SharePoint versions use enterprise-level security updates to protect your organization’s documents.

3. Access to the Microsoft 365 Ecosystem

Companies often switch from 3rd party document management platforms to SharePoint because of how they can integrate SharePoint with the rest of the Microsoft 365 tools they use.

SharePoint documents work great with the Office Suite, Power Platform, Dynamics 365, and Teams to transform your business processes digitally.

SharePoint Versions

sharepoint versions

SharePoint created several versions before they developed their online system. Standard SharePoint versions include:

  • SharePoint 2001
  • SharePoint 2003
  • SharePoint 2007
  • SharePoint 2010
  • SharePoint 2013
  • SharePoint 2016
  • SharePoint 2019

The older your version, the more time and resources are needed for proper planning and execution. However, the migration is doable. If you have SharePoint 2010 or earlier, you must perform multiple migrations to modernize your SharePoint platform.

What data sources do you want to migrate?

You might not want to migrate every document over to your SharePoint Online site depending on your organization’s size and the complexity of your document storage solution.

For example, you have multiple departments with different document management sites in your organization. Some departments prefer to keep their documents at their current location, while others update their systems.

To understand what data sources to migrate and which to leave alone, you can ask the following questions.

  • What documents do you need to move?
  • Do you want to delete documents past a specific time frame?
  • What about duplicates?
  • What is the average document size?
  • What types of documents do you need to transfer?
  • Do you think any files are corrupt?

Download your FREE eBook on The Definitive SharePoint Migration Guide and Checklist.

SharePoint Migration Map

SharePoint Migrations Process

There are 5 phases in a SharePoint migration. Those phases are:

  • Discovery
  • Assessment
  • Pilot
  • Execution
  • Onboarding


Organizations must analyze their entire document management system makeup to discover the right document structure for their intranet. The proper design includes user permission and data dependency mapping.


After reviewing the organizations’ processes and integrations, it is vital to understand your migration requirements. The right SharePoint strategy reduces the number of hassles during the execution.


Before moving your documents, it is crucial to test, test, and test each aspect of the migration process. A pilot allows you to test the performance of the new SharePoint enhancements and functional equivalencies.


Once you test, strategize and plan your organization’s migration map, it is time to act. Keep all stakeholders informed of the migration status.

Setting realistic expectations for the team is a vital component of migrating your documents. You need to ensure all stakeholders know your migration plan and how it affects their operations.

Finally, test everything. Execution does not mean you forget the pilot stage of the migration. Instead, it is vital to migrate your documents smoothly.


The migration is not over when you transfer your documents. Next, you need to onboard your team to ensure they know how to make the most out of the new SharePoint site.

What to consider with SharePoint Online Migrations?


How long does the migration take? Part of this estimate should include how much time it takes to plan & assess the data and how many documents you need to transfer. You need to consider your documents’ size and quantity to determine how long the transfer takes.


Here are some questions to determine your resources.

  • What tools can you use for the migration?
  • How many people do you need to finish the project on a timely basis?
  • Can you complete the project internally or with external consultants?
  • What other resources do you need to complete the migration?

SharePoint Online Migration Final Thoughts

Migrating your enterprise management software to the latest version requires time, energy, and patience. If you need help doing this more effectively, let us help you.

Schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with our SharePoint online migration team today.