Custom eCommerce Platform vs SaaS vs PaaS – Which is Better (Infographic)


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Thinking about starting an eCommerce business? Are you looking out for the best eCommerce platform for startups? With an array of eCommerce solutions available in the market, you might face a hard time choosing the right tech stack for your project.

Let’s make things simple for you. Any solution from any vendor, these solutions are the part of one of the following two major models:

  • SaaS (Software as a Service)
  • Custom e-Commerce solution

SaaS eCommerce solutions: It delivers the Software to you in via cloud in the readymade state. Your site gets up quickly and you can sell from the first day itself. There is no setup involved for the website. Hosting is taken care of by the vendor, and you just need uploading your products to sell them instantly. The vendors take a monthly fee for this ease they provide to you. Depending on the vendor, they can charge a few extra fees for additional services like Payment gateway, and a cut from your overall turnover. Shopify and Big-Commerce platforms are the perfect examples of such SaaS-based eCommerce platforms.

What is a PaaS eCommerce solution then?

They are like SaaS eCommerce solutions. The only difference, they do not offer the readymade website, but a platform you can use to set up your own website. They also offer you the standard codes and API compatibilities so you can develop your own add-ons to extend the base features. Take Magento commerce for example. It is a cloud-hosted platform that also allows Magento certified developers to develop their own Magento extensions. Controlled customizability is what that makes a PaaS solution different from a SaaS.

How Custom eCommerce platforms are better?

A custom eCommerce platform is not just the best eCommerce platform for small business but also scalable to keep up when your business grows exponentially. As a small eCommerce startup, you would not want to stay at the same level. You would want to grow and offer a huge array of products and services.

But things go wrong with PaaS and SaaS eCommerce when you think of scaling your business. They offer limited or no customizability at all. SaaS is closed source and you get highly dependent on the vendor for everything.

To run a successful eCommerce business you cannot afford to constrain yourself with over-dependence. You need a solution that gives you the full freedom to choose every aspect. To get a preference for choosing your own developers, website host, and innovative website features, you need a custom eCommerce platform.  A customized solution designed for your kind of business model.

You should check out this detailed comparison between SaaS, PaaS, and custom eCommerce platform. This infographic by ShopyGen will help you make an informed choice to choose the best eCommerce platform for small businesses that also can be scaled to the desired levels.


Hassan Mansoor
Hassan Mansoor is the Founder and Director at Technical Minds Web. After completing Masters in Business Administration, he established a small digital marketing agency with the primary focus to help the small business owners to grow their online businesses. Being a small entrepreneur, he has learned from project management, and day to day staff management and staff productivity. He's a regular contributor on


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