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Five Reasons to Prefer Self-Hosted Ecommerce Software over SaaS

Why people might want switch from SaaS ecommerce solutions to downloadables like CS-Cart. Here in CS-Cart, we actually offer the both, so we do have expertise on the topic. Besides, there are clients who come to CS-Cart from Shopify and Bigcommerce, and they share their reasoning with us.

Here are five points I find most important.

Bigger Projects Need More Control

The more the sales, the more the responsibility. Large stores with thousands of users can’t risk to rely on a third-party service. However unlikely, should anything happen to the service, and all the reputation, customer base, order history is gone. Depending on someone else’s professionalism is no fun when huge business is at stake.


Most popular SaaS nowadays are secure enough to prevent data leaks (then again, you have to trust them), but the service’s employees usually have the access to your data. Of course, it’s an exceptional case, but your private commercial data can leak through this channel.

Also, if you store is served in another country, there’s no guarantee that that country’s laws will protect your data.

You Need Significant Modifications

Even the best SaaS (like Merchium) can only offer you modifications restricted by their API. This restriction is in the very essence of SaaS; it just can’t function the other way.

If your store needs a customization that’s outside of this particular SaaS’s API, you’re practically stuck.

Integration with Third-Party Services and the Offline

Often, a store is not the only thing in online business. There’re blogs, sites, services, and offline stores that are all part of your business network. If you want them deeply integrated, there’s a chance the SaaS API doesn’t support your particular service combination. In this case, like in point 3, you’re stuck.

Features You Need Are Always with You

SaaS is a mass product, and it has to offer the features most users will appreciate. If your business has a specific need that is not quite popular among other users, you just deal with it.

In even worse scenario, the service can freely take features from their product if they are not popular enough. Imagine if the unpopular feature happens to provide an essential part of your workflow. You wouldn’t want to be in that position at all.

With self-hosted software, you pick the features, you decide what remains and what is removed.

What of these two models suits your business best? What pros and cons do you see in both solutions? Share your opinions here in the comments.

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Head of Content Marketing at CS-Cart | Website

Yan Anderson is the Head of Content Marketing at CS-Cart with over 10 years of experience in the eCommerce industry. He's passionate about explaining complicated things in simple terms. Yan has expertise in building, running and growing eCommerce marketplaces. He loves to educate people about best practices, new technologies, and trends in the global eCommerce industry.