To answer this fully we need to understand what all other eCommerce providers describe as ‘fully integrated’ or ‘real time’. These terms are not misleading in themselves as certain things are real-time and some things are fully integrated, but it’s critical to understand the difference in terminology with regards to SAP eCommerce. Real-time may mean other third party solutions can create a sales order in real-time through some middle-ware and then refer to this as real-time and fully integrated. However, other required areas of data, for example materials, are still synchronized replications of the material data between SAP and the third party solution. They may have these functions built into a web service and this is certainly a classification of ‘being integrated’ but master data is still pushed through a web service or middle-ware to be subsequently created or retrieved by the external sites. This means your data is always in two places.
So it’s fair to say that it should be described as ‘some parts are real-time and some parts are fully integrated, but ultimately, a number of parts still adhere to the age old synchronisation of data between two databases’. Fig A.
There are significant volumes of data which reside outside of SAP, for instance the product hierarchy for the menu navigation, or the extended material data. This wouldn't be held in SAP as there isn't a normalised place for it to go. Typically, in a third party eCommerce solution, the materials are held outside SAP in a separate database and some form of replication/connector keeps it all in sync. To some degree this makes sense as the extended material description on the site differs from the master data within SAP, for example, product descriptions, product marketing texts and other fields like these. Ultimately all other solutions have to operate like this because they are not delivered within SAP.
Look out for crafty comments from other third party providers like “we don’t replicate, duplicate or synchronise transactional data between your business system and our eCommerce platform.“, look for the highlighted italicised wording, this is because in reality, there is still a huge amount of synchronisation happening around things like Customer Master and Material Master data, they are only talking about a small part of the total data, in most cases there can be well over 80 points of integration due to replication.
So whilst it’s true that all other SAP eCommerce providers will say their solution is integrated, this doesn't really tell you how much, or indeed what is actually real-time, or how much synchronisation is still happening via middle-ware. The main drivers for you when considering eCommerce on SAP are ‘what is real real-time’ and ‘what solution is truly natively delivered’.
The reason why Omnia by Weaveability is so different from all other eCommerce solutions is that the Omnia platform sits inside SAP. It is a SAP Certified core SAP component alongside MM, SD and FI. This means that there is no integration, nothing, zero, diddly-squat to or from SAP. Pure SAP standard functions and processes to deliver incredible sites you didn't think possible with SAP. Fig B.