The following are the different out of box free migration options in SharePoint:
1. Backup and Restore a site or Import/Export 2. SharePoint Designer
3. Create a Web package4. Save a site as a site template using browser
5. Features & Solutions
6. Content Deployment
The following are the different third party migration options in SharePoint:
1. Ave Point's Doc Ave
2. SharePoint Site Migration Manager by Metalogix
3. Migration Manager for SharePoint by Quest
4. SharePoint Migration Framework by codeplex
1.Back up and Restore a site (.cmp) or import/export : we can move an entire site or subsite from test to prod, but they can't move alerts, Recycle Bin state.
2.SharePoint Designer : we can move an entire site/ subsite/list/images/web parts etc., from test to prod and it needs designer access on respective environments.
3.Create a Web package (.fwp): Web packages are a great way to duplicate site structure, but they cannot include list data, subsites, or security and permissions settings.
4. Save a site as a site template using browser (.stp): When we want Subsites created on a site to have a similar site structure, look and feel, and even content. we can do this by saving a site as a site template and adding it to the Site Template Gallery so that anyone can use the site as a template, but they can't include list data.
5.Features and Solutions: A Feature is a package composed of a set of XML files and it works fine for artifacts, but for a entire project we need to create feature for each site columns, content types, web parts, master pages, layout pages, images and other contents and its lengthy and time consuming process.
A Solution is a deployable and reusable package that can contain a set of Features.
6. Content Deployment: It can be a good solution, but it has some limitations: unless if we are deploying a whole site collection, we need to make sure all the assemblies, web.config modifications, and file system changes are present in the destination environment before we restore the backup. Content deployment is targeted at "contents" and not at "structure", although some of the SharePoint structures are migrated with the contents. Also, both environments must be connected for automatic content deployment to work.
7. AvePoint's Doc Ave Pricing: DocAve Backup and Recovery is $3,495 per server; DocAve High Availability is $2,395 per server (bundled at $3,995 per server); DocAve SharePoint Discovery is free; and DocAve SharePoint Administrator is $3,995 per WFE. Other prices vary depending on configuration.