SAAS e-commerce

Updated: August 24, 2020 | Oleg Zhuk, Technical Product Owner

What is a SAAS platform?

Software as a Service or SAAS is a way of delivering services over the Internet. In particular, providing hosted applications. All of the SAAS applications run on a provider’s servers. SAAS platforms allow you to avoid the need to install and download the sophisticated software and free you from concerns about security and performance of your website.

SAAS e-commerce platforms offer the fastest way of launching your online store while saving the budget on your website design and development. SAAS Content Management Systems (SAAS CMS) offer the ideal solution for launching your online business. These applications have long proven to be useful website builders. Small and medium-sized businesses continue to utilize them and enjoy their large variability and customizability. Nowadays, SAAS solutions are the way to go, so it is always useful to expand your knowledge about SAAS e-commerce.

Why is a SAAS platform best suited for your business?

SAAS has become hugely popular among business owners. At least 40% of online stores are based on SAAS e-commerce solutions and 90% of all the stores use at least some form of SAAS service. First of all, when using SAAS, you do not need to buy expensive software. Secondly, no coding experience is required. The website building is based on “drag and drop” operations. You get a whole set of functionalities to get the perfect site, specifically crafted for your needs. E-commerce SAAS platforms like Intershop, Magento, and 3dcart are very scalable. They can be easily adapted to users’ needs by offering a good amount of different applications, extensions, and plugins. Moreover, a cloud-based SAAS platform provides an easy way to connect to a single database containing all relevant website information. Finally, you will always enjoy working on your site by accessing your platform from any device imaginable without painful additional software installations.

SAAS vs. on-premise (fully customizable) platforms

There are specific advantages and disadvantages for each solution. In the end, it all comes down to what works best for your particular business.

Traditionally, companies used to get on-premise e-commerce solutions. They would obtain the enterprise software license, then install and maintain the required hardware and software within their own or controlled physical location. The most significant advantage of this solution is full control over everything related to the company’s e-commerce system, right down to every physical server and every software tweak. The downside is that your company is responsible for setting up and continuously maintaining the hardware (and carrying all the costs associated with it) and re-calibrating all the software customizations with each update.

A SaaS e-commerce solution, on the other hand, is going to be owned, maintained and managed remotely by the software provider. The provider will deliver your e-commerce SaaS software, update it regularly and maintain the hardware infrastructure. The solution will be available and accessible from anywhere by simply logging in online. It will be financed on a pay-as-you-go or a subscription basis based on use metrics.

SaaS solutions on top of the Virto Commerce Platform

Spend your budget on delivering unique business features rather than reinventing expensive technological foundation.

SAAS e-commerce examples

Shopify

One of the most reliable SaaS platforms on the Internet due to the sheer amount of Internet vendors that use it. If you are looking for a perfect balance of managing your own store and not investing lots of time into learning how to code, Shopify may be a great solution. The online store builder Shopify provides, is an excellent tool to create almost any desired appearance for your storefront. Many themed templates are available for free, along with the add-ons and plugins that allow you to customize and boost the performance of your website even more. Join the community of more than 15,000 Internet merchants and you can start exploring Shopify’s benefits even sooner.

Magento Go

Although Magento Go is a relatively new SaaS e-commerce platform, it retains its accountability as the affiliate of the most popular e-commerce platform. All the Magento editions serve a tremendous amount of 110,000 online vendors and multi-channel retailers. Owned by eBay, Magento tried to fill in the market of novice e-commerce business owners and maintain its leadership in the field. Thus, Magento Go was created to aid the businesses new to e-commerce by providing a quick yet reliable help with setting up and running an e-commerce store. Besides that, this particular solution is just as scalable and customizable as other Magento editions and offers many available extensions to its customers.

Volusion

A great SaaS platform that focuses on presenting the product in your web store and provides your customers with the best possible customer experience. With Volusion, you can implement great features such as product image zooming, and product comparison. Besides that, be ready to enjoy Volusion’s crisp and perfectly designed template themes as well as the absence of credit card transaction fees. Along with that, you can be satisfied with the tremendous effort the company puts into providing its best customer support and in adding tons of self-help resources and how-to’s that guide you in creating your store.

Demandware

An enterprise-level SaaS platform that is aimed towards an already established retailer. It is a very powerful, yet easy to use solution that allows large companies to make no effort to build an in-house website. Enjoy the easy configuration of admin panels and the variety of integrated out-of-the-box features that enhance conversion rates. Feel free to customize it specifically to the needs of the business and employ your marketing team to adjust SEO and enable product content marketing. The plans start around $60,000 per year.

NetSuite

A full-fledged SaaS platform with ERP and CRM tools that is very suitable for mid-sized vendors who want to improve conversion and growth of their web store.

With useful website tools that help you monitor the lifetime value of each customer, traffic on the website, or customer interaction, it is a versatile solution that can be scaled easily, while offering competitive pricing.

NetSuite acquired Venda in 2014, at that moment one of the world's leading pioneers in and providers of cloud-based digital commerce solutions. This combination of NetSuite and Venda delivers unprecedented capabilities that businesses need to meet the demands to deliver a seamless, omnichannel commerce experience to consumers and businesses.

Big Cartel

A SaaS platform in the niche of musicians and artists and now serves more than 1,000,000 stores. It offers a basic solution that helps you build a complete website, promote and finally sell your artistic achievements, ranging from paintings to clothing. If you are looking for a simple bare bone solution that helps you set up a high-performance website quickly, look no further than that.

BigCommerce

A major player in the SaaS e-commerce field and the one that has proven its reliability over a long period of time. This particular platform is unique for its knowledge base and a wide variety of how-to videos that guide you in those vast e-commerce labyrinths. Besides that, you can enjoy having a 24/7 customer support that can accommodate any of the questions you might have about the platform. Like other major SaaS solutions, BigCommerce offers a wide range of applications and plugins to customize your website. Therefore, if you are new to e-commerce and not good at using cutting-edge technology, but still want the level of customizability an open source solution should offer, you can consider BigCommerce as your go to solution for building your online store.

Virto Commerce e-commerce SAAS Platform

If you want to sell your product online as soon as possible, the most beneficial decision is to create a website with one of the most widely used e-commerce SAAS applicationsVirto Commerce. Virto Commerce is a cloud-based e-commerce SAAS platform, valued for its creative problem-solving approach in providing flexible pricing models, e-commerce B2B integrations and interchanges, wide partner selection, and excellent website delivery. The company’s ideology revolves around its open source and agile features that allow you to both enjoy the freedom in creating your store’s page and achieve customer satisfaction. Virto Commerce offers truly scalable enterprise e-commerce solutions based on agile principles. You do not need an entire team of IT professionals to operate it, as all of your business processes online can be handled by a single page application UI, allowing you to accommodate multiple applications within the same UI. Virto Commerce’s cloud features make it stand out among other cloud-based SAAS platforms. Deploy your website on Microsoft cloud and quickly scale with a single click. Take advantage of tested agile processes and practices to launch your store’s website and start selling beyond business hours. Their tremendous 24/7 live representative customer support means no more need to search for the best platform for your needs.

Conclusion

All sorts of businesses can benefit greatly from the use of SAAS applications. Businesses looking for a wide variety of features and prioritize integration and automation can get what they need most. Those who want a modern design and those who enjoy providing anexcellent customer experience will also achieve their goals. Overall, SAAS platforms offer the convenience of creating a website, featuring an immense amount of options and excellent scalability. And most importantly, e-commerce SAAS platforms provide a good fit for the majority of your business goals online, allow you to be realistic with your business strategy and deliver the most pleasant shopping experience to your clients.

Cloud white paper

In this white paper, you can find out more about the key benefits of switching to a cloud e-commerce solution.

Oleg Zhuk
Technical Product Owner