SaaS, PaaS, or Both?

What is the Best Cloud Model for your Digital Commerce Business?

Introduction to Cloud Computing

With business environments changing rapidly, having the right IT infrastructure is becoming an
even more critical factor for success. In the world of e-commerce, many enterprises are looking to cloud adoption as a way to maximize cost savings, reduce risk and effectively manage their
IT operations.

There are three basic cloud computing models that businesses often have to choose from: Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS), and Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS). When it comes to enterprise-grade commerce, the computing models considered are usually either SaaS or PaaS. While both offer countless benefits for e-commerce, businesses must carefully evaluate their specific requirements to determine which cloud computing model will be best suited to their needs and requirements.

Cloud Computing Models: SaaS & PaaS

What is Software-as-a-Service (SaaS)?

Software-as-a-Service is a cloud computing model in which a software provider or vendor develops, deploys, and manages the entire software. This includes maintaining the cloud application software and middleware, providing automatic software updates, handling security, and generally making the software available to customers via the Internet on a pay-as-you-go basis. The vendor controls the entire stack which can be accessed using a web browser.

What is Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS)?

Platform-as-a-Service provides businesses with a solution to build, test, and run applications on top of a fully managed infrastructure, platform, and application stack. With PaaS, the process of enterprise software development becomes more simplified; users can customize the features they want to be included in their subscription.

SaaS SaaS
PaaS PaaS
SaaS - When Integration requirements are met with out-of-box solutions.
- When the functionality provided by the SaaS vendor is sufficient.
PaaS - Best used in digitally fast-growing environments.
- For projects that require a higher degree of customization and integration flexibility.
Main Users
SaaS - Customers aiming to build a simple online shop.
PaaS - Global manufacturers, wholesalers, B2B distributors, retailers with complex transactional use cases, etc.
- Businesses in growing verticals like Food & Groceries, Pharma, Medtech, Gaming, and Education.
Changes and Improvements
SaaS - Businesses are dependent on the provider to make improvements to features and integration options.
PaaS - Businesses will have access to a self-service portal to manage infrastructure, deploy their code, and monitor the application’s performance.
Customization, Flexibility &Scalability
SaaS - Cannot provide full flexibility in relation to customizations, extensions or simply building differentiative functionality and business logic outside of configuration and plugins.
PaaS - Imposes no customization or integration limits. Offers developers complete control on the application level while ensuring maximum flexibility, scalability, and availability.
Time to Market
SaaS - Can be quick if the functionality offered by a SaaS vendor fully meets business requirements.
PaaS - In some circumstances, PaaS can help businesses gain a quicker Time to Market. For example, if a SaaS vendor does not support your precise requirements enabled by many API-based & headless systems. in this scenario, PaaS would likely have a quicker TTM than SaaS.
Roles and SLAs
SaaS - Responsibilities associated with software maintenance, infrastructure management, data availability, etc. are eliminated.
PaaS - The PaaS vendor provides the infrastructure, platform, core application, middleware, servers, development/staging/production environments, and storage.
- The developers focus on developing or extending the custom business logic on top of the fully managed application core and ideally within the Service Level Agreements (SLAs) of the entire platform.

All PaaS vendors provide upgrades to the underlying OS, application servers, databases, and
middleware layers. However, Spryker is pushing the PaaS concept further with our PaaS+ offering, which allows customers to also utilize Spryker Code Upgrader. This innovative addition to cloud allows seamless semi-automatic upgrades to a customer’s e-commerce platform without limiting their ability to extend it.

The Spryker PaaS+ solution is a fully managed cloud offering with an end-to-end SLA. This allows complete control of the application layer with no customization and integration limits while providing maximum scalability and availability. Spryker PaaS+ works best for sophisticated transactional use cases in B2B, Unified Commerce, Enterprise Marketplaces, and B2C.

Selecting the PaaS+ cloud deployment model for your digital commerce platform does not mean SaaS solutions are out of the picture. In a complex e-commerce environment, a business usually has more than one application to run. That is especially true if you are following the Composable Commerce architecture. So, while your e-commerce system uses PaaS, following the guidelines outlined above, you may select a SaaS solution for your PIM, CMS, or Loyalty program components.

About Spryker

Spryker is the leading composable commerce platform for enterprises with sophisticated business models to enable growth, innovation, and differentiation. Designed specifically for sophisticated transactional business, Spryker’s easy-to-use, headless, API-first model offers a best-of-breed approach that provides businesses the flexibility to adapt, scale, and quickly go to market while facilitating faster time-to-value throughout their digital transformation journey. As a global platform leader for B2B and B2C Enterprise Marketplaces, Thing Commerce, and Unified Commerce, Spryker has empowered 150+ global enterprise customers worldwide and is trusted by brands such as ALDI, Siemens, Hilti, and Ricoh. Spryker was recognized by Gartner® as a Visionary in the 2023 Magic Quadrant™ for Digital Commerce and was also ranked as a Strong Performer in The Forrester Wave™: B2B Commerce Solutions, Q2 2022. Spryker is a privately held technology company headquartered in Berlin and New York. Find out more at spryker.com

Spryker Website