Archiwa tagu: ecommerce

The new SaaS definition

Technology is an area where changes take place almost every day. Systems, especially those intended for online sales, both in the B2B and B2C model, are regularly enriched with new functionalities or changes in the specificity of those already existing. All this is conditioned by the constantly growing needs of the customers.

At i-systems, since the beginning, the main idea behind the implementation of all projects is quality. Providing clients with the best technological solutions is the basis of our work. In November 2016, we came up with the idea to set up a team of developers responsible for implementing the Continuous Integration method.

The most important task of this department has been the effective implementation of this method and enabling i-systems customers to continuously develop their sales systems. The CI method is based on joint work of a team of developers who introduce changes continuously, merging them every few minutes. Working together on the code affects its highest quality and makes it consistent, the next benefit is that the system is able to work effectively for many years.

The first store based on Continuous Integration was implemented by i-systems in May 2017. Currently, in our portfolio, we have as many as 16 online stores launched in the CI method, and their number is constantly growing.

For a brand, the implementation of CI means:
– systematic development of the online sales system with innovative functionalities created in cooperation with the R&D
– ensuring security by performing automated tests thanks to which only fully verified elements are introduced to the system
– even faster time to market understood as a transition from the concept of functionality to the implementation
– guarantee of the system provider’s responsibility for the quality of the solution based on the tested elements
– predictable cost of e-commerce system development thanks to precisely defined conditions of cooperation
– sustainable and constant development of the e-commerce system

The constant addition of new elements and functionalities to the system has made it necessary to change the business model used so far. This is how the concept of the model called ‚Dedicated SaaS’ emerged. It turns out that dedicated solutions and those offered in the SaaS model are not mutually exclusive, and even perfectly harmonize with each other. The combination of these e-commerce models provides customers with a completely new quality and makes it possible not only to use their advantages but also to eliminate the disadvantages.

As a result, we get an innovative system model that is characterized by:
– lower cost of software implementation and development
– the possibility of creating dedicated solutions
– access to all functionalities offered by the software provider
– fast Time to Market
– the ability of long-term development

What’s important, the dedicated SaaS is a guarantee of lowering the initial investment cost of the project, and the use of this business model ensures that the client is fully protected. When the client decides to self-host and maintain the software, he or she has the option to purchase the license of the solution they already use.

Continuous Integration is the future of e-commerce. The i-systems company as the first on the market, through the use of CI practice, offers a sales system developed as a dedicated SaaS. Thanks to this method, customers have stable and always up-to-date systems, allowing for many years of development and strengthening of their market position.

i-systems once again in Deloitte Technology Fast 50

This is the second time, i-systems was a part of Deloitte Technology Fast 50. The ranking affiliates the fastest growing technology entrepreneurships in Central Europe, based on the growth rate of annual operating revenues. Technology Fast 50 is a part of Technology Fast 500 EMEA, organized by Deloitte – international company, specializing in audit services in the field of economic consulting, financial advisory, risk management and tax advice.

17th edition of Fast 50

In this year’s ranking of the fastest growing technology companies in CEE, there were 21 companies from Poland. The dynamics of revenue growth of all companies equaled 1057% in 2015, and it was almost two times higher than a year before. i-systems company took 43 place in the ranking with 373% growth and was one of the seven European companies, which managed to appear in the ranking for two consecutive years.

Our company specializes in creating dedicated e-commerce systems for retail and distribution. Being among 50 most innovative technology companies in CEE for the second time is a great honor for us. We hope that in the upcoming years we will take higher and higher places in the ranking – says Krzysztof Jaciw, CFO at i-systems

As in previous years, this year’s Technology Fast 50 ranking was dominated by companies dealing with use of information technologies, however in different applications: marketing, analytics of large databases, Mobile UX. They constitute up to 74% of all companies from the ranking (50% a year before).

Criteria of the ranking

To be a part of Deloitte Technology Fast 50, except from dynamic growth, the companies had to develop or create proprietary technologies and/or spend a significant amount of capital on research & development, have an ownership structure that excludes majority-owned subsidiaries of strategic entities, have its headquarters in a participating country, be a technology company and be active in one of the categories: IT and digital solutions, internet, media and telecommunications, clean technologies & energy, and biotechnology, nanotechnology and medical technologies. with an idea for e-commerce development

As in any business, in case of e-commerce you need to act fast. You need to stay open-minded and constantly develop system to meet the demands of a modern customer – says Piotr Czmoch, the owner of

What are the plans of company to use the e-commerce potential?

– Our e-commerce system is a professional online store, directed to strictly defined customers. Selling online, we focus on a narrow group, however we want to be the best in chosen area. 

We don’t want to extend our product range with all possible physical activities. We do our best in order to our customer, the user of outdoor equipment and clothes – climber and mountain hiker – found satisfying offer in terms of brands, products and prices. We want the customer, a potential visitor to our store, to efficiently and intuitively make a purchase.

What are the biggest challenges of selling online?

– The number of challenges connected with online sales is considerable and despite commonly shared opinion: nothing comes easy. The competition is enormous, and customers more and more pampered and demanding. While making a decision to start selling online, from the beginning you need to fit the standards and have an idea for further development. Trade rules are becoming increasingly tougher, more professional and global. Foreign companies, which on the domestic market have already reached the maximum level of development, see Poland as an excellent area for „colonization”. Therefore, while selling online, you have to be prepared to fight for the interest of the customer.


How do you imagine e-commerce at and in Poland in two years?

– Online sales is developing dynamically, so that forecasting what will happen in two years, would be like reading tea leaves. Because it depends on several elements, among others: the economic situation, the expansion of „big players”, the mode of action of shipping companies etc.

What we know, however, is the direction wants to follow. Due to the growth in sales, we want to develop processes related to warehouse logistics. We also want the constant modernization of our e-commerce system, so that it meets the growing expectations of our customers. Also, not resting on our laurels, investing in our team and sales system determine today’s success in online sales – sums up Piotr Czmoch, the owner of

Among its product range, has equipment for mountaing trips – touristic, as well as climbing. The product range also covers: outdoor women’s and men’s clothing, trekking shoes and climbing shoes, high quality equipment and accessories for ski touring, as well as accessories for fans of outdoor cooking. store is the right place for climbers, travelers and adventure lovers. The brand has won many awards for the use of modern business e-commerce solutions. This year, the company was placed among four final companies in Mobile Trends Awards for the design and operation of sales system on mobile devices.

i-systems release – version 4.3

Another version of our system has been released. This time, changelog reached a record number of 258 positions, such as: adding new full-text advanced search engine, redirection module, spam shield module, as well as HTTP Auth configurable authorization.  

What is advanced Solr search engine?

This module is an extension of an advanced product searcher (PAS), which uses Solr for searching. What is Solr? It is an efficient platform for full-text search. The previous version of the system was based on storing product data in database, however it was much slower. Solr is quicker than database query.


This option can be efficiently scalable and expandable, unlike the previous version, where additional queries were needed. In case of PAS module, all changes in product features had to be refreshed, so that data could be outdated. Now, they are being refreshed incrementally every 5 minutes, and all data is being refreshed every hour. This means that  the longest waiting time for this changes on frontend level is 5 minutes. Moreover, customers get Solr search engine bundled with version 4.3.

Redirection module

This module allows to create and import URL redirections from the panel level. The customers want to keep URL address, they had in the previous store, because of positioning. Therefore, we prepared a tool, which in a very universal way, deals with tasks, which until now have been carried out in an individual way.

Spam Shield Module

Spam Shield reduces email spam from the contact forms, as Internet bots send unwanted content. This protection is based on both analysis of the display time and time needed to send a form – to small interval alerts application to bot. Also, a hidden box has been added, the fulfillment of which will inform the system about the threat.

HTTP Auth configurable authorization

Along with the launching new versions of the multidomain stores, when the customer does not want the store to be indexed by Google, while working simultaneously with the current store, the module introduces an additional authorization for a particular domain. This means, that the stores continue working, and the module introduces an additional authorization, preventing content indexing by Google.

What else?

In addition, discount politics module has been updated. The following changes have been introduced: discount limit support, base price discount, improvement of Allegro cart price calculation, improvement of transport registration, transport surcharge support, and conditional coupons support. Release 4.3 also includes new options for logistics modules, and improvement of UX in the administration panel.

Advantages and disadvantages of open source

eCommerce market is a rapidly growing area. For companies which understand the potential of online sales it has become an important source of income. Fitting the needs of modern, more and more mobile customer, who wants to buy online efficiently and comfortably, is a basic feature of an efficiently functioning online store.

Choosing the right software for your business, either dedicated or open source, is a foundation while creating an online store. While following the internet portals, it is hard to resist the feeling that there is a bit of disinformation concerning advantages and disadvantages of an open source software.

Undoubtedly, it has a huge contribution to the popularization and development of eCommerce. However, being aware of the benefits and drawbacks of this kind of software, one can adjust the online sales system to the specifics of business, and most of all – demands of current and future customers.

Open source software in Poland and over the world

Among 10,000 biggest online stores worldwide, the most popular open source engine is Magento. According to Built With, Magento engine drives over 14% of all online stores, and next 8% are driven by Magento Enterprise engine.

Created by i-systems on the basis of: Global eCommerce Technology Distribution The shopping cart technologies used by online stores globally. Last updated Jan 20th 2016.

Created by i-systems on the basis of: Global eCommerce Technology Distribution The shopping cart technologies used by online stores globally. Last updated Jan 20th 2016.

Taking Poland into the consideration, Magento considerably losses in the market in favor of other solutions. This software supports only 4% of the Polish online stores. The leader at this level is PrestaShop, which is selected by 25% of the market. A common software is also WooCommerce, which occupies 19% of the market.

Created by i-systems, on the basis of: Top in Ecommerce usage in Poland · Week beginning Jan 25th 2016

Created by i-systems, on the basis of: Top in Ecommerce usage in Poland. Week beginning Jan 25th 2016.

Open source – the cost of implementation and development

The word ”open” doesn’t mean that the software is free of charge – it determines the open source code. Therefore, persons with appropriate development skills and the time can freely modify the store’s engine for their own needs. It is possible to create online store on this basis, however one should not expect that it would be totally for free. If you don’t have programming skills or time, or if you rather focus on actions to increase sales – you have to pay for such services.

Due to high demand, prices of the Magento specialists are one of the highest among the eCommerce programmers. The open source license such as basic Magento Community is free. However, if you want to have technical support and marketing modules, you have to buy Magento Enterprise with an annual license fee in the amount of more than 22,000 $.

Safety when choosing open source software

The open code is a solution that has its strengths and weaknesses. On the one hand it can mean better detection of errors and fixing them faster, and on the other hand increased risk of attack. Checking code by a large community is also fuzzy responsibility for errors. The example can be OpenSSL and gap “hearbleed”. For more than two years the gap was in browsers and web servers. No one noticed it, thinking that this was already checked.

Problems with updates and compatibility with following versions of open source

Open source is rarely compatible with the following versions. The problems associated with updates are often the subject on the forums. When there is a new version of Magento and online stores try to migrate, it is very often that integrations and dedicated extensions of the store stop working properly. Sometimes even official modules refuse to work. Then the store has to be built practically from scratch. Update complications caused that significant percentage of online stores is still working on the Magento version 1.7 engines.

Open source and the change of the company implementing online store

Open source allows to change the agency which creates eCommerce system. However, you should remember that the agency, being aware of the temporary agreement with the customer, not always fully engage in the tasks. It happens that stores generated on open source are written in a hurry, without consistent rules, attention to comments, specification and code culture. It means that the new agency in the initial phase has a huge problem, because they need to understand what the programmer had in mind. As a result, though trial and error, changes are being introduced, or some parts of the store are written from scratch. Then arises the so called “effect of technical debt”, which means biggest costs of modifications and software development in the future.

Commercialization of open source

Every software is finally replaced by the new solutions. The example can be OsCommerce software, which for a long time has been the most popular system for online stores. However currently, it is gradually displaced from the market in favor of other systems.

Popularity of open source software, created by i-systems on the basis of:

Popularity of open source software, created by i-systems on the basis of:

Currently, the driving force behind Magento 2, the premiere of which was announced more than three years ago, is ebay. During the works on the project, CEO and software creator – Varien – has left the company. He admitted off the record that he had different definition of “open source” than ebay. Development direction of this software can be seen by comparing Community and Enterprise version. The commercialization of open source software is standard practice. List of free modules, the number of users and products is gradually reduced, so as to companies wishing to develop their online activities, chosen paid model.

The cost of maintaining the open source software

The highest fixed costs of maintaining online store are hosting and the time of programmers. Open source is often an overextended system. For this reason it requires several times bigger resources than dedicated system of the same size. Optimization is troublesome, and the increase in traffic means the necessity to add computing power.

Open source created by self-educated community

Open source high popularity owes to the self-educated community. It is directly affected by growing number of new agencies implementing stores basing on the open source software. Open source software will always be more popular, because it clearly shortens the way of each interactive agency to the possibility of creating online stores. However, this type of stores has a low level of security – they are often a victim of attacks and data theft. It is also the most commonly used solution for creating fictitious shops.

Open source and new solutions

Today’s sales systems have moved beyond standard collection and handling of orders a long time ago. The current eCommerce market is changing very rapidly. Open source is always a few steps behind solutions that are developed by commercial companies in closed teams. That was in case of Responsive Web Design and OmniChannel. Waiting for a moment when a module will be ready may result in loss of customers of an online store, as they will be interested in shopping according to applicable standards at this time.

Open source software, such as Magento, WooCommerce and Presta is a very good complement of eCommerce market. It responds to the needs of small and medium-sized companies that have the experience and resources to independently develop a standard store. However, when a company wants to focus efforts on increasing sales, and it prefers to pay an external company to take care of the support, hosting and technical matters, dedicated software is worth considering. The costs of implementation and further development may be much lower than in the case of open source. Implementation of dedicated solutions is especially worth considering when the store’s functionalities are beyond standard ones, and they require constant monitoring and quick response to errors.

The advantages of i-systems cloud

Servers are one of the most crucial parts of the eCommerce system. Therefore, we decided to crate our own, fully adjusted to the demands of e-market, cloud hosting infrastructure. We present the nine technological advantages of i-systems solutions.


Dedicated servers or vps/cloud suppliers make clean servers available for their customers. The customer gets a password, IP address and other necessary information needed to administrate. Next, user has to configure, secure and optimize servers. Configuring the scalable environment for the store itself needs 5-10 virtual servers (load balancers, application servers, empty servers, servers’ replications, cache servers, etc.). Except for configuration the servers needs to be optimized, which is not a one-time task, contrary to popular belief. At i-systems, all the works connected with server administration are conducted by a team.

Incremental backup

One of the most important resources of eCommerce system is data. Keeping backups of all data, even after a few months, is connected with a necessity to have enormous disc resources. Therefore, i-systems team created own solution: incremental backup. It allows to recover data state, even a few months back, without a necessity to have all the disc resources. It is possible because the only thing that is saved on backup are the differences in files since the last backup. There is always a catalog with an exact copy of a backup system. If it is necessary, the differences are applied to the last version of the system and thus we recover all data.

Vertical scalability

Vertical scalability of servers is increasing a number of processors and RAM in virtual server. Such actions are a natural development of infrastructure. That gives us a rapid possibility to increase the number of users the web can handle. However, this kind of scalability has a certain limit. At some point, the addition of resources is not possible (there is no physical possibility to add another disc or memory), or it is not effective anymore (system reached its maximum efficiency). When vertical scalability is no longer an option, the only option is horizontal scalability.

Horizontal scalability

Horizontal scalability of servers is increasing an infrastructure by physically adding another servers and to split particular tasks between them. The task assigned to the particular server is not visible for the users in any way. This kind of scalability and tasks’ division allows multiple increase in number of users the web can handle. Horizontal scalability is limited only by apps capabilities and the knowledge of admins.

Service monitoring

On every server, no matter who is the supplier, a range of functionalities is installed. From those indispensable, as www servers, cache, data bases, to dedicated services. In the context of hosting services it is very often that the only thing that is monitored is computer operation. What is excluded from the monitoring is the operation of each functionality separately. In case of i-systems cloud solution all the functionalities of the server are being monitored and its operation is checked every 5 minutes. This monitoring also checks CPU load and the amount of available disc space. Network admins are on duty 24/7 and in case of any problem they are additionally alerted via email or text message.

Service-level agreement

Thanks to the own solutions we guarantee that all the server’s functionalities will work. Hosting suppliers ensures only the availability of the machine. When the functionality of www server stops working, which means that the webpage is not working, it is not a problem of the hosting company. It can cause a situation, where hosting company fulfills the agreement (the hardware physically is working indeed), however it is not responsible for the failure of one single functionality. SLA for us is a responsibility for servers operation as well as the functionalities installed on them.

Adjustment to the system

i-systems cloud is build on the basis of many years of experience in maintaining customer’s systems from different suppliers, in different configurations and different servers. Currently, all the hardware infrastructure, network, as well as server software is optimized to fit i-systems software apps. Thanks to this, servers are free from panels which slow them down (they are managed by script) and they are created optimally to the eCommerce actions. Own solutions and adjustment to the eCommerce, since the beginning makes the system work 40% faster than in commonly used Linux in the same hardware configuration.


Single Point of Failure (SPoF) is a threat to the servers. It is a part of the infrastructure, which failure is a cause of the whole system paralysis. This is why in i-system cloud solution every machine has among others: two CPUs, two independent power supply units, disc matrix, double power source, emergency power supply (UPS and generators), links from multiple operators, and double network devices. Thanks to this, a failure of one element has no impact on servers and their services operation.

High Availability

High Availability systems can be characterized by high reliability. Implementing HA system consist in connecting cloud hosting with system’s capabilities. While creating HA solution, it is assumed that, despite the best hardware, every element of infrastructure can fail and the system still has to work. The i-systems software may work in HA/cluster mode. Hardware working on i-systems cloud is based in two independent server rooms, 13 km away from each other. Such distance allows live replication of all data and automatic failure repair of even all data center.