8 minutes to read

PaaS ecommerce: PhiAcademy and Portaltech Reply explain why they have chosen Shopware's solution

PaaS ecommerce: PhiAcademy and Portaltech Reply explain why they have chosen Shopware's solution

To the German article

Shopware PaaS, our new Platform as a Service (PaaS) solution, can drive significant value and growth for established companies. With PaaS ecommerce solution, we supply a cloud-based platform (runtime, middleware, operating system and infrastructure) while the customer manages the ecommerce application and all of its data. This enables our customers to fine-tune the Shopware (application) to their precise needs while we take care of the rest.

How do the benefits of Shopware PaaS stack up? We interviewed Paul Stuefer, head of ecommerce and marketing at PhiAcademy, and Roman Allenstein, Manager of Shopware Platinum Partner Portaltech Reply, who describe one of the first PaaS projects below. They experienced the real-world advantages of developing a commerce site with Shopware PaaS.

PaaS ecommerce: nine questions about Shopware's solution

Paul, please describe PhiAcademy and what your business does.

“PhiAcademy GmbH is a renowned beauty company from Austria. With PhiShop (our online store), we are the international market leader in B2B online shopping for beauty products. Founded in 2016, the store has now grown to over 900 products shipped to more than 160 countries.”

When you moved your online business to Shopware 6, you opted to implement our PaaS ecommerce option. What were the deciding factors, and what were your requirements?

Paul Stuefer, PhiAcademy: "We wanted as much flexibility as possible in the development of our site. Both in testing and operational development, we wanted to work feature-independently and keep release times as short as possible. Shopware PaaS allows us to quickly spin up new instances for testing and development and merge them. This makes use-case acceptance much easier for us, as we can fit more topics into one sprint. And if we have a blocker, it doesn’t compromise the entire release. The blocked features are simply resolved out. This is working on an agile infrastructure."

Our partner Portaltech Reply supported your implementation. How did the collaboration go? 

Paul Stuefer: "This was one of the first Shopware PaaS projects, and Portaltech Reply proved to be a competent, committed and transparent partner at all times. The Portaltech team quickly came to grips with the technology and established close communication with the project partners.

Obstacles that arose were always overcome proactively, quickly and reliably by Portaltech Reply and the hosting experts. Their cooperation was always exemplary."




Phishop.com, your Shopware store, launched a few months ago. What was the biggest advantage of Shopware PaaS in this launch, from your point of view?

Paul Stuefer: "Cost savings. We cut costs along the entire DevOps and infrastructure lifecycle. This was mainly due to reducing the classic DevOps infrastructure effort and the associated better use of developer resources.”

Let's move to the more technical side: How have you saved resources with Shopware PaaS?

Roman Allenstein, Portaltech Reply: "We reduced DevOps resources for development and the startup and shutdown of staging instances. So, we achieved high savings in cost and, most importantly, time."

Paul Stuefer: "In addition, hosting costs have decreased, and we have more cost control."

What does the deployment process look like for you?

Roman Allenstein: " In this project, we deliberately chose the Git-Flow branching model with feature branches. We build and launch automated testing instances for each feature, thanks to Shopware PaaS. We test in a staging environment with an up-to-date, DSGVO-compliant database to simulate and test a live state. After the main branch merges, the testing instance dies automatically."

How do you handle Shopware updates?

Roman Allenstein: "We update with every other major update. This way, we can minimize testing and keep the risks for the store and the data as low as possible."

Were there any special challenges with Shopware PaaS?

Roman Allenstein: "One challenge was that the resources (CPU/RAM) could not be distributed appropriately, as they were distributed linearly across the processes. So, the RAM-intensive processes also draw a lot of CPU power and vice versa.

In addition, the cloud computing tool, fastly, did not run properly at the start of the project, and further options for server configuration were only included in the Shopware basic setup ("one-click template") in elementary form. In the multi-domain/multi-instance deployment, there were challenges with the configuration of domain names and standard configuration of, for example, customer groups, accesses or extensions. These obstacles, which occur in such projects, were of course, no surprise to us. Together with Jonas Kröger and his entire team from Platform.sh and Moritz Naczenski from Shopware, we were able to address these things directly and quickly and work together on solutions."



“As an early adopter, PhiAcademy did have a few hurdles, which have now been largely improved on the Shopware side. Our documentation has been expanded so there is now extensive information, for example, about fastly, as well as an optimized Shopware template.

In Shopware PaaS, you choose between different service packages. If the selected Shopware setup is insufficient for RAM-intensive processes, you can book a more powerful package without any problems.

Meanwhile, multi-domain and multi-instance handling can be created and managed via a console in the Shopware Sales Channels. 

Feedback from PhiAcademy and Portaltach Reply is critical for us. It helps us constantly improve our processes and features in Shopware PaaS.”

Moritz Naczenski, Director Product Discovery at Shopware

What’s your overall conclusion about Shopware PaaS? 

Roman Allenstein: "We particularly liked the developer-friendly design of the processes, such as branches, deployment, mergers, environments, UI, etc. In addition, tools such as Blackfire and Open Search are regularly enhanced, which helped us enormously, especially as a digital agency on this project." 

Paul Stuefer: "All in all, we are satisfied with the Shopware PaaS. The collaboration started with good onboarding and continued with strong support and high accessibility of all involved project partners. We went live with phishop.com in only four months."

Roman Allenstein: "I agree. From our experience as a long-time Shopware partner, Shopware PaaScis a good solution for small and large Shopware projects to deliver products (or increments) quickly."


Thank you, Paul and Roman, for your extensive insights on this joint project. We look forward to further collaborations. 



Never miss out - get all the latest news sent straight to your inbox.

To the newsletter manager