In today’s competitive market, businesses need to constantly adapt and evolve to stay ahead of the curve. With the rise of Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) platforms, eCommerce businesses can streamline their operations and boost their sales in 2023. SaaS eCommerce platforms offer various tools and features that can help businesses to manage their inventory, and process payments. They are also useful in marketing the products more effectively.
In this article, we will explore top 7 SaaS eCommerce platforms that can help boost your sales and stay competitive.
Table of Contents
- What Saas means?
- SaaS Ecommerce vs. Open-source Ecommerce
- Total Cost of Ownership: Open Source vs. SaaS
- Why is SaaS platform best suited for your online business?
- Scope of Saas in Ecommerce
- Top 7 Saas Ecommerce Platforms
- Frequently Asked Questions
What SaaS means?
SaaS stands for “Software as a Service”. It is a model of delivering software applications to customers over the internet, on a subscription basis, rather than requiring them to install and maintain software on their own servers or devices.
In a SaaS model, the software provider hosts the application on their own servers. He also manages the infrastructure, security, and maintenance of the software, and provides access to customers over the internet.
Customers can typically access this ecommerce software through a web browser or a dedicated app. They can pay a recurring fee for the use of the software. This fee is often based on the number of users or level of usage.
SaaS has become a popular way for businesses to access and use software applications. This is because it eliminates the need for upfront costs, and simplifies deployment and management. It also provides greater flexibility and scalability.
SaaS Ecommerce vs. Open-source Ecommerce
Software as a Service or SaaS ecommerce and open-source ecommerce are two different approaches to building an online store.
SaaS ecommerce platforms are fully hosted solutions that provide everything you need to start an online store. This includes website hosting, software, security, and payment processing.
Examples of SaaS ecommerce platforms include Shopify, BigCommerce, and Volusion. SaaS platforms are easy to use, and offer a wide range of features. They are generally more affordable than open-source ecommerce solutions. However, they can be limiting in terms of customizability. You may also need to pay extra for some features or integrations.
An open-source ecommerce platform, on the other hand, is free to use. You can also download and install them on your own server. Examples of open-source ecommerce platforms include Magento, WooCommerce, and OpenCart.
Open-source platforms are highly customizable and offer more flexibility than a SaaS ecommerce platform. However, they require technical expertise to set up and maintain. You’ll need to handle website hosting, security, and payment processing on your own. This can be more expensive and time-consuming than using a SaaS platform.
Ultimately, the choice between SaaS ecommerce solution and open-source ecommerce solution depends on your specific needs and preferences. If you’re looking for a quick and easy solution with a lower barrier to entry, a SaaS platform might be the best choice. However, if you need complete control over your online store an open-source platform may be the better option. It’s also a right choice in the case where you have the technical expertise to set up and maintain it.
Total Cost of Ownership: Open Source vs. SaaS
It will always influence how much you spend on building & operating your business. You want an application that supports your website and provides it at reasonable prices. When comparing the total cost of ownership (TCO) between open-source ecommerce and SaaS ecommerce, there are several factors to consider.
Cost of Open Source Platforms
Open-source ecommerce platforms are generally free to download and use. However, they come with associsted costs for services like website hosting, security, and payment processing. You’ll need to pay for website hosting, either through a third-party hosting provider or by setting up your own server. You’ll also need to pay for security measures, such as SSL certificates and regular software updates, to keep your website secure. Payment processing fees will depend on the payment gateway you choose to use.
Cost of SaaS Platforms
On the other hand, SaaS ecommerce platforms typically charge a monthly fee. It includes website hosting, software updates, security, and payment processing. The monthly fee can be higher than the costs associated with open source ecommerce. However, it often includes features and integrations that would require additional costs with open source ecommerce.
In addition to the direct costs, it’s also important to consider the time and resources required to set up and maintain your ecommerce website. SaaS platforms which are typically easier to use and require less technical knowledge. Unlike them, an open-source ecommerce platforms require technical expertise to set up and maintain.
To conclude, the TCO of open-source ecommerce versus SaaS ecommerce will depend on your specific needs and preferences. If you have the technical expertise to set up and maintain an open-source ecommerce platform and are willing to invest the time and resources required, it may be a more cost-effective option in the long run. However, if you prefer an easier-to-use platform that includes all the necessary features and integrations, a SaaS ecommerce platform may be a better choice despite the higher monthly fees.
Why is SaaS platform best suited for your online business?
The SaaS market is only growing and booming and is expected to reach a worth of 14500 million USD by the end of this decade. There are several reasons why a SaaS platform may be the best choice for your online store owners:
- Easy to Use: SaaS platforms are designed to be user-friendly and easy to use, even for non-technical users. You don’t need to have coding or technical skills to set up and manage your online store, which can save you time and resources.
- Low Upfront Costs: SaaS platforms typically have low upfront costs since you don’t need to purchase any software or hardware. You simply pay a monthly subscription fee, which includes website hosting, software updates, security, and payment processing.
- Scalability: SaaS platforms are highly scalable, which means you can easily add new features and integrations as your business grows. You don’t need to worry about managing server resources or software updates since these are taken care of by the platform provider.
- Security: SaaS platforms typically have robust security measures in place to protect your online store and customer data. The platform provider is responsible for maintaining security and ensuring compliance with industry standards and regulations.
- Support: SaaS platforms typically offer customer support to help you with any issues or questions you may have. This can be especially helpful if you’re new to ecommerce or don’t have technical expertise.
Scope of Saas in Ecommerce
The scope of eCommerce SaaS is quite broad and encompasses a range of solutions designed to support online retail businesses. Ecommerce SaaS platforms typically provide businesses with a suite of tools and services to help them create and manage their online stores, including features like:
Online Storefront Creation and Customization
Ecommerce SaaS provides businesses with the tools to create and manage an online storefront that can be customized to reflect their brand and products. It can be used in storefront creation and customization to help businesses create and customize their online stores quickly and easily, without requiring technical expertise.
Here are some ways in which ecommerce SaaS can be utilized in storefront creation and customization:
- Storefront Templates: Ecommerce SaaS provides businesses with pre-built storefront templates that they can customize and adapt to their specific needs. These templates typically include basic design elements, such as color schemes, fonts, and layouts.
- Drag-and-Drop Editors: Ecommerce SaaS provides businesses with drag-and-drop editors that allow them to easily add and arrange elements on their storefront pages, such as product images, descriptions, and pricing information. This can help businesses create professional-looking storefronts without requiring technical expertise.
- Custom Branding: Ecommerce SaaS allows businesses to customize their storefronts with their own branding elements, such as logos, colors, and fonts. This is helpful in creating a consistent brand identity across all online channels.
- Mobile Responsiveness: Ecommerce SaaS ensures that storefronts are mobile-responsive, meaning they are optimized for viewing on mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. This is crucial for businesses to reach a wider audience and improve their mobile conversion rates.
- Integrations: Ecommerce SaaS can integrate with various other software and tools, such as payment gateways, shipping providers, and marketing automation software. This can help businesses streamline their storefront operations and improve their overall efficiency. Businesses can add and manage products in their online store including descriptions, images, prices, and inventory levels.
Product Information Management
SaaS platforms enable businesses to manage their product information efficiently. It can provide businesses with a centralized platform where they can store all their product information, such as product names, descriptions, SKUs, pricing, images, attributes, and inventory levels.z
- Product Categorization: SaaS can be helpful in providing tools to categorize products, making it easier for customers to find what they are looking for. It can automatically categorize products based on their attributes, such as color, size, material, and brand.
- Product Search Functionality: SaaS platforms offer search functionality that allows customers to search for products by name, category, or keyword.
- Product Recommendations: With the help of SaaS platforms, businesses can recommend products to customers based on their purchase history, browsing behavior, and preferences.
- Multi-Channel Product Distribution: SaaS can help businesses process orders from multiple sales channels, such as online marketplaces, social media platforms, and brick-and-mortar stores, in a centralized platform. This can help businesses avoid manual errors, reduce fulfillment time, and improve accuracy.
- Automated Product Updates: SaaS can automate the process of updating product information across multiple sales channels. For example, if a business updates a product’s price or description in their product catalog, SaaS can automatically push those changes to all of the sales channels where the product is listed.
Inventory Tracking and Management
eCommerce SaaS solutions typically include order management tools that enable businesses to manage orders from their online storefront, process payments, and track shipments.
- Real-Time Inventory Tracking: Ecommerce SaaS can help businesses track their inventory levels in real-time, across multiple channels and locations. This can help businesses avoid stockouts, overstocking, and other inventory-related issues.
- Automated Inventory Management: Ecommerce SaaS can help businesses automate their inventory management processes, such as reordering, restocking, and tracking inventory movements. This can help businesses reduce manual errors and save time and resources.
- Multi-Channel Inventory Management: Ecommerce SaaS can help businesses manage their inventory across multiple sales channels, such as online marketplaces, social media platforms, and brick-and-mortar stores. This can help businesses improve their order fulfillment efficiency and avoid overselling.
- Forecasting and Analytics: Ecommerce SaaS can help businesses forecast their inventory needs based on historical data and sales trends, and provide analytics on inventory performance metrics such as inventory turnover and stock-to-sales ratio. This can help businesses optimize their inventory levels and reduce inventory carrying costs.
- Integrations: Ecommerce SaaS can integrate with various other software and tools, such as accounting software, shipping and fulfillment software, and point-of-sale systems. This can help businesses streamline their inventory processes and improve their overall operations.
Payment Processing and Order Fulfillment
Ecommerce SaaS (Software as a Service) can be used in payment processing and order fulfillment to help businesses process payments securely and efficiently, and to streamline their order fulfillment processes. Here are some ways in which ecommerce SaaS can be utilized in payment processing and order fulfillment:
- Payment Processing: Ecommerce SaaS can integrate with various payment gateways to securely process payments from multiple sales channels, such as online marketplaces, social media platforms, and brick-and-mortar stores. This can help businesses avoid payment-related issues, such as fraud and chargebacks, and improve their cash flow.
- Automated Order Fulfillment: Ecommerce SaaS can integrate with various shipping providers and fulfillment centers to automate the order fulfillment process. This can help businesses save time and resources, and improve their order fulfillment efficiency.
- Shipping and Delivery Management: Ecommerce SaaS can help businesses manage their shipping and delivery processes, such as tracking shipments, handling returns, and managing customer inquiries. This can help businesses improve their customer satisfaction and reduce customer churn.
- Multi-Channel Order Management: Ecommerce SaaS can help businesses manage orders from multiple sales channels, such as online marketplaces, social media platforms, and brick-and-mortar stores, in a centralized platform. This can help businesses avoid manual errors, reduce fulfillment time, and improve accuracy.
- Fraud Detection and Prevention: Ecommerce SaaS can provide businesses with fraud detection and prevention tools, such as machine learning algorithms and risk assessments, to prevent fraudulent transactions and reduce chargebacks.
- International Shipping: SaaS platforms provide tools for international shipping, including customs documentation and shipping rate calculations.
- Returns Management: SaaS platforms enable businesses to manage returns more efficiently, including generating return labels and tracking the status of returns.
Marketing and Promotion Tools
Ecommerce SaaS (Software as a Service) can be used in marketing and sales tools to help businesses automate and streamline various aspects of their marketing and sales efforts.
Here are some examples of how ecommerce SaaS can be utilized in marketing and sales tools:
- Email Marketing: Ecommerce SaaS can help businesses create and send targeted email marketing campaigns to specific customer segments. This can help businesses increase engagement and conversion rates by delivering personalized content to each customer.
- Social Media Marketing: Ecommerce SaaS can help businesses manage and automate their social media marketing efforts, such as managing captions through content management system, scheduling posts, tracking engagement, and analyzing performance metrics. This can help businesses increase their social media presence and reach a wider audience.
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO): Ecommerce SaaS can help businesses optimize their website for search engines by providing tools to identify relevant keywords, analyze website traffic, and track search engine rankings. This can help businesses increase their website visibility and attract more organic traffic.
- Personalized Marketing: Ecommerce SaaS can help businesses collect and analyze customer data to create targeted and personalized marketing campaigns. This can help businesses better understand customer behavior, preferences, and interests, and tailor their marketing efforts accordingly.
- Customer Segmentation: Ecommerce site owners can use SaaS ecommerce for customer management. They can segment customers based on various attributes such as demographics, purchase history, and behavior. This can help businesses tailor their marketing efforts and communication to each customer segment, leading to better engagement and conversion rates.
- Loyalty Programs: Ecommerce SaaS can help businesses create and manage loyalty programs that incentivize customers to return and make repeat purchases. By rewarding customers for their loyalty, businesses can improve customer retention and boost sales.
Top 7 Saas Ecommerce Platforms
Here are the top 7 SaaS ecommerce providers, in no particular order:
Shopify is a widely used ecommerce software solution. It offers a wide range of features and tools to help large and small businesses set up and manage their own online store. These include customizable website templates, payment processing, inventory management, shipping and tax calculations, and marketing and SEO tools. It also has a large app store with thousands of integrations and extensions. This allows businesses to add additional features and functionality to their stores.
Shopify offers a user-friendly interface for the business owner. This makes it easy for individuals and businesses of all sizes to set up and manage their online stores. You no longer need a team of web developers or any technical skills. Additionally, Shopify offers 24/7 customer support and a large community of experts and developers who can provide guidance and support for using the platform.
BigCommerce is one of the leading Open SaaS ecommerce service provider for mid-market and enterprise brands. It has a large app store with hundreds of integrations and extensions, allowing businesses to add additional features and functionality to their stores.
One of the key benefits of using BigCommerce for online e-commerce store management is its scalability and flexibility, which makes it a popular choice for businesses of all sizes and industries, including enterprise-level businesses. It also offers a range of pricing plans to fit different business needs and budgets, including a free trial and a “Lite” plan for businesses that only need basic ecommerce features.
BigCommerce also has a strong focus on security and reliability, with built-in security features and partnerships with leading payment gateways and shipping providers.
Squarespace is another popular SaaS provider offers a 14-day free trial during which period you can get access to most of the premium tools, and customizable codes. It provides a variety of templates for users to choose from, as well as drag-and-drop editing tools that allow for easy customization of layouts, fonts, colors, and more.
The platform also includes features for managing content, such as blogs, galleries, and ecommerce capabilities for selling products and services. Squarespace also offers tools for managing domain names, email marketing campaigns, and SEO optimization to help businesses and individuals increase their online visibility.
Founded in 1999, Volusion is one of the oldest Saas ecommerce platform. Volusion is designed to be user-friendly and accessible for both large and small businesses, whether they are just starting out or have an established online presence. The platform also includes a range of marketing and promotional tools to help ecommerce functionalities and let businesses drive traffic and sales to their online stores, such as SEO optimization, social media integrations, and email marketing capabilities.
3dcart is an affordable, PCI certified ecommerce platform with a greater number of features, making it a better choice for larger, more complex stores or ecommerce sites. The platform offers a range of customization options for a business to business and/or business to consumer ecommerce space, including the ability to add custom code, and can handle high levels of traffic and sales volume.
3dcart also provides extensive support resources, including a 24/7 customer support team, a knowledge base, and a range of tutorials and training materials.
If you want to take your brick and mortar store online, Wix might be the solution. Wix.com Ltd. is an Israel-based highly acclaimed website builder that provides cloud-based web development services. Wix Editor offers design freedom with advanced functionality made easy with the drag & drop feature. Wix Code lets users design state-of-the-art websites & apps.
In addition, Wix offers a range of marketing and promotional tools to help businesses drive traffic and sales to their websites, including SEO optimization, social media integration, tools to manage online payments, and email marketing capabilities.
One of the best SaaS ecommerce platforms in 2023, Weebly helps streamline the processes of your ecommerce websites. Weebly offers a drag-and-drop website builder that allows users to create custom websites without the help of a web developer or any coding or technical skills.
It also offers a range of features and tools for e-commerce online shopping websites, including customizable store templates, payment processing, inventory management, shipping and tax calculations, and marketing and SEO tools.
One of the key benefits of using Weebly is its ease of use and simplicity. The drag-and-drop website builder makes it easy for users to create custom websites without any technical skills or experience, and the ecommerce tools are designed to be user-friendly and easy to manage.
These are just a few of the many SaaS ecommerce platforms available, and it’s important to consider your specific needs and preferences when choosing an ecommerce platform for your business.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the use of SaaS in ecommerce?
SaaS (Software as a Service) plays an important role in e-commerce by providing businesses with access to powerful tools and services without the need for on-premise software installations.
What is an example of a SaaS ecommerce platform?
Some popular examples to SaaS ecommerce platforms include Shopify, Salesforce commerce cloud, BigCommerce, SquareSpace, Volusion, 3dcart, Weebly, and Wix.
Is Big Commerce a SaaS?
Yes, BigCommerce is a SaaS (Software as a Service) e-commerce platform that allows businesses to build and manage their online stores without the need for on-premise software installations or IT infrastructure.
What is SaaS ecommerce platform?
Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) ecommerce means delivering products through partnership or via software companies offering software applications on the internet rather than downloading.
Is Shopify a SaaS?
Yes, Shopify is a SaaS (Software as a Service) e-commerce platform that provides businesses with a complete set of tools for building and managing their online stores.
Are SaaS companies ecommerce?
Not all SaaS companies are ecommerce companies, many SaaS companies provide services that are used by ecommerce businesses to manage their online operations more effectively.