Sitecore Version Comparison & Upgrade Guide

Upgrading SitecoreEnhance Your Customer Experience with Sitecore’s Latest Features

With every Sitecore version comes a bevy of enhancements that can have a big impact on your digital marketing.

In this blog, I’ll outline the major features and upgrade path from previous versions of Sitecore and provide an overview of the new features and functionality that you can expect with the latest release of Sitecore – Sitecore 8.

Sitecore 6.x

Sitecore 6.5 and 6.6 were important versions in the platform’s release history with notable improvements and updates made to the Digital Marketing System (DMS) and Page Editor views.

Key Features & Updates

  • Marketing and engagement automation
  • Measurable value and efficiency
  • Real-time personalization
  • Dashboards & reports
  • Classified origin visits
  • Content Experience Platform
  • Device Simulator
  • Page Preview service
  • Native MVC support
  • Page Editor & Rich Text Editor
  • Support for SQL Server database Mirroring
  • NET Search Engine
  • Executive Insight Dashboard

Please Note: Support for Sitecore version 6.x will end in 2015.  Learn more here.

Sitecore 7.x

Sitecore 7.2 and 7.5 include massive updates made to content, analytics and experience scalability. Sitecore 7.5 introduces the Profile and xDB (Experience Database or Analytics Collection Database), which makes the jump over from SQL Server to MongoDB.

Key Features & Updates

  • Content scalability improvements
  • Buckets
  • Publication efficiency improvements
  • Data Sources Improvements
  • Content Tagging/Faceting
  • Search Screens
  • Analytics Collection Database (named Experience Database or xDB)
  • Scalable analytics data architecture (MongoDB)
  • Contact Entities (Experience profiles) – allows tracking users across devices/visits

Feature name changes

  • Customer Engagement Platform -> Sitecore Experience Platform or Sitecore XP
  • Digital Marketing System (DMS) -> Experience Marketing
  • Email Campaign Manager (ECM) -> Email Experience Manager
  • Engagement Analytics -> Experience Analytics
  • Adaptive Print Studio -> Print Experience Manager
  • Engagement Automation -> Experience Automation

Sitecore 8 Overview

Sitecore 8 introduces even more features including a completely revamped user interface, new experience profiles, powerful analytics, and an array of advancements in content management.

Key Features & Updates

  • Experience Profile – a single view of your customers providing data about their entire customer experience and interaction with your site
  • New Experience Explorer – allows you to navigate your site with a set of predefined conditions to simulate and test the user’s experience
  • Shared/Final layouts – versioned layouts allows you to share components across layouts to further target different segments
  • Improved Faceted Search in Media Library
  • xDB – Experience Database now built on MongoDB for improved analytics
  • Content Tags by profile cards
  • Launch pad view – replaces the desktop view with Sitecore “apps”
  • New login screen “Single Track Login” – replaces multi track login in previous versions
  • Federated Experience Manager – a Javascript controlled snippet of code that can be used with third party sites and applications to track and pull data back in to Sitecore
  • List Manager and Segmentation lists – allows segmentation of audiences using demographics pulled from the Experience Profile
  • Experience Analytics – improved analytics and insight around the customer experience
  • Path Analyzer – allows you to view the path a user takes while navigating your site
  • Simple & Advanced testing – one click testing and optimization for every component
  • List Manager – completely rebuilt to work with the Email Experience Manager (ECM)
  • Revamped user interface

Feature name changes

  • Marketing Center -> Marketing Control Panel
  • Page Editor -> Experience Editor
  • Social Connect -> Social Experience Manager

Sitecore Version Comparison

Still trying to figure out which version is for you? Not sure if you are ready for Sitecore 8? Check out our Sitecore Version Comparison chart below to compare features found in the most popular releases of Sitecore.

Sitecore Version Comparison

Sitecore Upgrade Path

If you are coming from Sitecore 6.5 or below, it would be a wise decision to upgrade to 7.2/7.5 before making the jump to 8. Not only will your solution be prepared for the xDB, you will also be able to take advantage of the important marketing and experience management tools used in the newer versions.

This path ensures your solution will remain current and optimized for the latest release. If you fall behind on the upgrade path, there will likely be a higher cost involved when moving your solution and optimizing it for each major release along the way. Save time and money now by upgrading and keeping your solution current.

As with any software related update, there may a situation where upgrading to the latest version should be postponed until infrastructure, budget or time is available and ready to accommodate the transition.’s Sitecore certified admins and developers are ready to talk to your team to help you plan your upgrade path and prepare your environment for the transition.

Are you ready to upgrade your Sitecore? 

Whichever version you choose, will make your transition fast and painless for your end users. Take advantage of our rapid scalability, enterprise support and resources, and extensive Sitecore partner network to move your business forward.

Sitecore Improves the Customer Experience

2015-05-22T08:21:49+00:00 May 22nd, 2015|

One Comment

  1. Praful Memane September 4, 2015 at 8:20 am - Reply

    Could you point me to “Executive Insight Dashboard” in sitecore 8.0?

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