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NetSuite vs SAP: Which Is Better?

NetSuite vs SAP: Which Is Better?

Many different ERP solutions are available for the Small-Medium Business (SMB) and Mid-Market Enterprise (MME) space. So many that it may feel overwhelming to pick the one you think will best enhance your business's growth. This blog post will compare two of the most popular solutions: SAP Business One and NetSuite.

This guide will detail the primary differences between SAP Business One and Oracle NetSuite. Both offer powerful tools, but you need to know the major distinctions to make an informed decision for your business.


Overview: NetSuite vs. SAP

SAP Business One is an enterprise resource planning (ERP) software application for small and medium-sized businesses. It integrates all core business functions into a single system, including financials, sales, customer relationship management (CRM), inventory, and operations. 

Business One provides real-time visibility into business data and analytics to help businesses make better decisions, streamline processes, and drive growth.

NetSuite is a cloud-based business management software suite. It offers a complete set of modules for accounting, enterprise resource planning (ERP), customer relationship management (CRM), and eCommerce. 


SAP Business One, originally called TopManage, was an Israeli company bought by SAP in 2002. The software provides small and medium-sized businesses with an integrated enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution. 

Founded in 1998, NetSuite specialized in software for developing business and marketing applications. In 2016, Oracle Corporation acquired NetSuite in a deal valued at $9.3 billion. The aim of the purchase by Oracle was to create a Cloud ERP for Small and Mid-Sized Enterprises. 


Differences Between SAP Business One & NetSuite

NetSuite and Business One offer base functionality out-of-the-box with the ability to add additional functionality as your business warrants it.

NetSuite is solely a cloud-based solution whereas Business One, however, gives you a choice of deployment options. It can be deployed on-premise, in the cloud, or in a hybrid deployment.

When evaluating the ideal ERP solution that's right for your business, you should consider the following:

  1. Where will the software reside? (cloud vs. on-premise or a combination of both, referred to as "hybrid")
  2. Performance differences
  3. Functionality differences
  4. Pricing options available to you


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SAP vs. NetSuite Difference #1

Deployment and Updates

How the systems interact with you is one of the ways the two ERPs differ.  

Exclusive to cloud integration, NetSuite applications and your data are managed entirely by Oracle in their data centers, and users interact with it via web applications. This makes NetSuite ideal for companies with fast and reliable internet connections.

Updates to NetSuite ERP happen twice a year. While usually, these have no hiccups, third-party integrations can also experience disruptions if they aren't updated.

Since control of the database is in the hands of Oracle, users don't have a say in when the updates occur or if they can be delayed; unless they have a more costly, premium or higher tier subscription. 

B1 offers hybrid deployment options. The ERP can be deployed on-premise, in the cloud, or a combination of the two. This is ideal for companies who already have invested a large amount into their on-site infrastructure and want to get their money's worth or if they have spotty internet connectivity. 

In addition to deployment options, B1 also allows partners, like Michell Consulting, to provide SAP Business One hosting solutions.  

NetSuite caters to businesses that fit their general criteria, but for companies that need an ERP that can stretch and adapt, B1 is the best option. 


SAP vs. NetSuite Difference #2

Managing Data and Performance

Simplifying and speeding up data are key reasons companies migrate to an ERP. Their accounting software can't keep up with the scale of growth they're at. 

While both Business One and NetSuite provide better data management than individual software programs most businesses start with, B1 is future-proofed and can scale much better than NetSuite.

Initially, a small business might not be concerned with how fast its data is analyzed because the volume is manageable. As they grow, so do the volumes of data to crunch, which can create bottlenecks in the system. SAP HANA is an in-memory solution for Business One that is hundreds of times faster than traditional applications, and it is an investment that supercharges analytics. NetSuite does not offer an in-memory database like HANA.


SAP vs. NetSuite Difference #3

Support for Your Business 

All factors that make up a business, like size, location, and industry, create unique problems and needs specific to that company. SAP Business One's capabilities and support structure are more cost-effective and faster than competitors like NetSuite regarding these essential solutions.

NetSuite might be a better fit if your company needs a simple solution and there aren't many unique technology demands. Recently NetSuite has been more attentive to finding partners who can solve unique problems for businesses. 

SAP Business One and its partner ecosystem are robust in fulfilling the niche needs of businesses. But if that's not a concern, the more general NetSuite solution might be right. It all depends on the answer a business is looking for.


SAP vs. NetSuite Difference #4

Pricing and Package Options to Consider

Business One Costs

SAP Business One pricing is according to the number of users and the purchased edition, and it can deploy on-premise or in the cloud. Subscription licenses vary depending on the edition and the number of users you buy.

SAP has three options: 

Professional - full access to all Business One features and the software development kit. A perpetual professional license costs $3,213 per user plus an annual maintenance fee, and a subscription price is $108 per month per user.

Limited - as the name suggests, has limited access to Business One and its features and half the cost of a professional user ($1,600 per year and $56 per month.) The benefit of limited user accounts is that you only have to pay for the capabilities needed for the user's department, not extras. 

The starting prices of a SAP Business One implementation can vary from $25,000-75,000. This would include planning/analysis, configuration, user acceptance testing, data migration, training and support.  

NetSuite Pricing

NetSuite offers three editions, also known as suites.  Each suite is for different sized businesses with different needs.

NetSuite Limited Edition - This edition is NetSuite pricing for SMB sized companies. It's best for companies that have only one legal entity and do not require more than 10 full user licenses and/or have less than 50 employees. NetSuite Limited Edition starts at $999.00 per month.

NetSuite Mid-Market Edition - This edition is for businesses that require more than 10 full users and/or have two or more legal entities that need the ability to perform consolidated financial reports across multiple currencies. NetSuite Mid-Market Edition starts at $2,499.00 per month.

NetSuite Enterprise EditionNetSuite's Enterprise edition is designed for companies with more than 1,000+ full user licenses. NetSuite Enterprise Edition starts at $9,999.00 per month.

NetSuite subscriptions are paid annually. Each edition comes with base functionality and can be enhanced with additional functionality via NetSuite's advanced modules. 

Advanced Modules

What if you are in a niche industry and need accounting software beyond what NetSuite offers? The solution is what NetSuite calls Advanced Modules; these are third-party modules that run on top of the NetSuite Framework and are customized to fit your business. 

Once you have chosen what subscription type to get, the modules it will include, and any advanced modules, you can decide how many and what kind of user licenses you need. 

The starting prices of a NetSuite implementation can vary from $25,000-75,000. This would include planning/analysis, configuration, user acceptance testing, data migration, training and support.  


ERP Features

Business One

SAP Business One includes several powerful features that streamline business processes and improve efficiency. Grouped into modules, these features can be purchased all at once or added as your business grows.

Business One Modules Include:

  • Financials: manages all financial aspects of your business, including accounting, banking, and financial reporting
  • Sales: manages customer data, sales opportunities, quotes, orders, and invoices
  • Purchasing: manages vendor data, purchase orders, and goods receipts
  • Inventory: manages stock levels, warehouse data, and product data
  • Warehouse: manages stock levels, warehouse data, and product data
  • Production: manages production data, including bills of materials and production orders
  • CRM: manages customer data, sales opportunities, quotes, orders, and invoices
  • Human Resources: manages employee data, including time tracking, leave requests, and expense reports
  • Reporting: generates standard and custom reports to track key performance indicators


NetSuite features enable companies to manage all key business processes in a single, integrated system. NetSuite provides businesses with a complete, real-time view of their business, which is essential for making informed decisions and driving growth. 

NetSuite Modules fall into the following categories:

  • Finance: the go-to module for understanding your company's financial state and planning its future
  • Procurement: can track vendors and tie them to particular supplies and automate quote requests and provide quote analysis
  • Manufacturing: plan production, check supplies, and provide calculations for how long items will take to produce
  • Inventory Management: can track SKU quantities and locations, see sales trends vs. available inventory, and reduce overstock 
  • Order Management: Feeds orders from creating the order to delivering the finished product
  • Warehouse Management: Essential if you have a warehouse as it helps plan shipments, batch picking, and increase efficiencies when teamed with inventory and order management 
  • Supply Chain Management: A tracking module that can follow supplies, goods, and refunds anywhere in the supply chain 
  • Customer Relationship Management (CRM): This is where all customer and prospective customers' information lives, including past relationship history
  • Professional Services Automation (PSA): Service-heavy project planning tool that helps in tracking expenses and timesheets, and billing clients
  • Workforce Management: A human resources module that works best with hourly employees that can monitor attendance, hours, and productivity
  • Human Resources Management: A combination of workforce management and CRM, but for employees that stores documents on job duties and performance reviews and eliminates redundancies usually involved in tracking employee hours and PTO
  • Ecommerce: Integrates B2B or B2C e-commerce sites with other ERP applications like payment, inventory, and customer order history into a shared database.
  • Marketing Automation: Manages digital marketing campaigns for email, web, social media, and SMS and automatically send communications based on customer behavior parameters you set

Languages Supported

SAP Business One is designed for international use and supports English, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Russian, Simplified Chinese, and Traditional Chinese.

NetSuite is available in over 20 languages. These include English, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Dutch, Danish, Finnish, Norwegian, Swedish, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Russian, Turkish, Polish, and Arabic.

Who Uses These Systems?

Business One is popular among IT service providers, automotive, electrical and electronic manufacturing, and energy industries. They like how it can scale with their growth and report generation capabilities.

NetSuite is used in Computer Software, IT services, retail, wholesale, and consumer goods industries. They like the accounting capabilities, the ease of implementation, and project management that uses real-time data. 

So Which ERP Is Best? 

ERP software is essential for businesses interested in increasing the efficiency of their operations and improving their bottom line. Doing your research, talking with consultants, and drafting an implementation plan to see which option will work best for your company is the best practice for deciding on an ERP.

Michell Consulting is a leading SAP Business One provider that offers a full range of services to help businesses implement the software and get the most out of it. We offer everything from needs assessment and planning to implementation and training. Our team of experienced consultants deeply understands how SAP Business One can help you to achieve specific business goals, and we're ready to put our knowledge to work for you. 

Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you take your business to the next level with SAP Business One.

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