if you are on a monolithic ecommerce platform you are overpaying
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If you’re on a monolithic eCommerce platform, you’re overpaying!

commercetools author image Stephanie Wittmann
Stephanie Wittmann
June 2022

Starting hosting your online store off on a monolithic platform like Salesforce or SAP may have seemed like the right choice many years ago. But it’s not anymore. Among many other issues, these antiquated commerce solutions are now associated with high costs and less value. Here’s how you’re overpaying and why commercetools is the better alternative.

if you are on a monolithic ecommerce platform you are overpaying

Overpaying for upgrades

Does the thought of an upgrade fill you with dread? With monoliths, upgrades are forced once or twice a year, and they can wreak havoc for your online business. Not only do you have to pay for these upgrades, but they come with months of planning and can result in downtime – which means lost revenue from sales.

In contrast, commercetools is cloud-native. This means releases are free and agile, so you are always up-to-date with the latest features, resulting in better reliability and security. Take it from Jesse Wierenga, Scrum Master and Agile Coach at Eurail: “The maintenance costs have sunk dramatically since the implementation of commercetools.”

Overpaying for developers

If you’re on a monolith, then you know how difficult and expensive it is to find specialized developers. That’s because monolithic platforms generally run on on-premise software (which needs a dedicated IT department) and specialized coding language. For example, Salesforce requires Salesforce-trained developers to manage programming language specific to Salesforce. This severely restricts your talent pool and costs a lot of money (and time) when onboarding new hires. 

Because commercetools is open-source, the licensing is free. Plus, our SaaS subscription model keeps expenses related to staffing, power consumption, maintenance and security at a minimum. Furthermore, our architecture is programming language-agnostic, so you aren’t constrained by the expensive training and hiring of specialized developers. In fact, after migrating to commercetools, The Salling Group, Denmark’s largest retailer, was able to achieve a 75% reduction in IT operational costs.

Overpaying for innovation

If you’re not fast enough to meet the ever-changing demands of buyers, they’ll be quick to move on and you’ll lose out on revenue. With monolithic platforms, it’s difficult to be adaptable or agile. You’re not able to customize features to reflect the uniqueness of your brand, integrate new channels or experiment with what works best for your business. 

With commercetools, whether you’re considering adding new product lines, selling via new touchpoints or integrating the latest tech like AI and voice commands, it’s all possible – opening up your business to new revenue streams and capturing more customers.

Companies focused on building something headless were innovating more quickly because they had faster development times, shorter development cycles and faster feedback loops. The likelihood of us being able to stay up to speed with what we wanted, what our stakeholders wanted and, most importantly, what our shoppers wanted, was more likely with a headless approach.
Simon Young

Senior Engineering Director of Unified Commerce, LEGO

Overpaying for best-of-breed

Monoliths are all-in-one commerce platforms composed of components that are not best-of-breed. Businesses that use monoliths for their eCommerce often need to procure and integrate third-party solutions, such as better checkout, CMS and PIM, to improve KPIs. Essentially, these businesses pay twice — for the Salesforce platform and the additional features on top.  

commercetools is headless and, therefore, naturally facilitates a best-of-breed approach. This enables you to select the most optimal services — and best pricing — since you have several vendors to choose from. As such, you will never pay for features and services you don’t need. This is pretty much the opposite of monolithic commerce suites that have fixed feature sets you have to pay for, whether or not you use them.

Overpaying for B2B and B2C by businesses that do both

This last point is only applicable to Salesforce, but it’s a big one. It applies to the merchants that do both B2B and B2C online sales. On Salesforce, you are forced to run two different platforms for both business strategies, which means double the risk, double the effort and – worst of all – double the cost!

This would never happen with commercetools, thanks to our headless architecture. Because the frontend and backend are decoupled, you can have multiple storefronts, brands, markets…whatever you like. That’s because you are simply leveraging the same backend and putting different UI interfaces on top of it.

If you’re interested in more information about lowering the TCO (total cost of ownership) of your commerce solutions and why legacy platforms cost so much, we have even more content for you.

commercetools author image Stephanie Wittmann
Stephanie Wittmann
June 2022

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