The Differences: SAP Business ByDesign vs SAP Business One


SAP Business One or B1 has been around for many years and has historically been SAP’s go-to product for smallish enterprises. Starting around 2007, SAP started to design a full cloud-based SaaS ERP offering that is now called Business ByDesign (ByD). ByD now has the largest investment from SAP and the strongest road map to dominate the global SME ERP market and should be considered by every SME and current customer of B1.

SAP Business One or B1 is a single integrated solution designed for small to mid-sized companies typically from as low as 5 – 75 users. It incorporates financials, sales, service, inventory, purchasing, very basic manufacturing, CRM, reporting and Microsoft Office integration. It is not a true cloud product with SAP but is offering a hosted version since 2016. SAP Business One suits companies in distribution, manufacturing, basic retail, eCommerce and services.


SAP ByDesign also plays in the SME space with users from 20 – 1,500+. It is a true cloud-only product covering all the areas of Business One but with a lot more coverage and flexibility to get what you need from your ERP system.

With ByDesign, you chose the modules you need at a price point very close to that of B1 – modules include financials, CRM, HCM, SCM, project management, SRM, compliance management and executive management. It is licensed on a named user-per-month basis and only accessed through your browser meaning no need for costly servers or internal IT support, as with any SaaS solution.

Many providers in the market would present the scope of the SAP Business One Suite as having a broader reach than it is actually designed to manage. So to clarify, let’s look at what SAP has to say regarding market segmentation. SAP has identified the boundaries in which segments of the market each of the ERP solutions play. In doing so, SAP has in essence stipulated where each product suite has its strengths and market capability. Additionally, they defined like this, where the share of investment into product development over the coming years will be spent. As can be seen here, Business ByDesign stems from the small / medium businesses (SMB) all the way up to the upper / medium enterprise (UME).

This means that it stretches from the 20 user count all the way up to 1500 users, and from simple financial management all the way through to full blown inventory and complex manufacturing. The sweet spots of the SAP Business One and SAP Business ByDesign solutions are as follows:

SAP Business One vs SAP Business ByDesign Pricing & Features


Company market cap

No of employees

Business complexity

Implementation budget





Limited user

Professional user

Average user / mth

Annual maintenance

Version upgrade costs

Single tenant multi-country

Growth capability built-in

SAP internal extensibility

SDK customisation

Designed for cloud

Solution type




SAP Business ByDesign

$500k to $1 billion

20 – 1,500

low to high








$80 / mth / user








single solution, modular

HTML5 native

built in

 SAP Business One

$200k to $5 million

5 – 50

low to medium










min $20k





kind of

add-on based



The markets that SAP Business One and SAP Business ByDesign suit best cross each other and the best solution will depend on both the size and growth of the organisation. For example, an SME with limited growth potential will be better matched to the Business One platform, whereas a SME with a growth path would be best matched to SAP Business ByDesign. This is because of SAP Business ByDesign’s ability to expand the functionality and capability of the ERP backbone of the business quickly and at a low cost.

Key Points

Acclimation has quick upgrade paths to move your business from B1 to ByD - please call us for more information and pricing

ByDesign is a true cloud-only product covering all the areas of Business One but with a lot more coverage and flexibility to get what you need from your ERP system

If you are growing fast, you need a system that will scale with your business - you only ever need to implement an ERP once

SAP is the leader in ERP systems, having the longest history of any ERP vendor.

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