SAP CPQ vs. SAP Commerce: Which is Best for My Business?

SAP CPQ vs. SAP Commerce: Which is Best for My Business?

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Author: Bill Thane

This article will focus on the similarities and key differences between SAP Commerce and SAP CPQ. 

As businesses strategize how to enhance the customer experience across multiple channels and platforms, often the options include customer relationship management (CRM), Configure Price and Quote (CPQ) as well as Commerce, Marketing, and Analytics. 

To deliver consistent customer experiences and content across different channels and devices, companies must choose the best solution or combination of solutions. We will first highlight the differences between the two platforms and then discuss how they can work together.


(Venn Diagram of the differences and similarities between SAP CPQ and SAP Commerce. Diagram by Amy Goldberg, Sr. Manager - CPQ Practice Lead, Canidium)

SAP Commerce: 

This product, formerly known as Hybris Commerce, offers the following functionality to support a company’s customer experience objectives. SAP Commerce offers the following features and benefits: 

  • SAP Commerce supports omni channel efforts to offer a consistent customer experience to multiple sales channels such as direct sales, partners and agents, and online customers. 
  • When integrated with SAP Marketing Cloud  enables and enhances personalization, marketing analytics, and promotions. 
  • Offers built in templates for presenting and personalizing content or designing various storefronts.
  • Highly scalable for high volume traffic and transactions.
  • Offers, as standard functionality, up sell and cross sell product/service recommendations.
  • Utilizes omni channel storefronts, meaning it offers a seamless user experience no matter if the user’s device is large or small format. The storefronts also addresses the needs of B2B, B2C, and B2B2C commerce experiences. 
  • Easily integrates with shopping cart technology, credit card processing technology, billing systems and tax systems offering enhanced self service capabilities. 
  • Offers robust content and catalog management capabilities - One of its strongest offerings. 
  • Easily accommodate anonymous or guest users who want to view the products or services and return at a later date to complete a sales transaction. 
  • Supports PunchOut integration that allows product catalog information to be shared with a client’s procurement system thus positioning those products for easier ordering. 
  • SAP Commerce is constantly expanding its functionality to other industry vertical markets including commerce solutions for retail, utilities, and travel and leisure.
  • SAP is offering increased flexibility for integration to SAP and non SAP solutions to support enhanced “lead to cash” capability.
  • Recent enhancements to SAP Commerce has resulted in the ability to check out and bill the purchasing account rather than supporting online payments via credit card. 

Ask About Commerce



This product, formerly known as CallidusCloud CPQ, offers the following high level advantages to deliver an enhanced customer experience solutions. 

  • Through its seamless integration with common CRM platforms such as SAP C4C, Salesforce, Microsoft CRM and NetSuite, SAP CPQ can support quoting for internal sales, partners, agents and distributors.
  • Easily accommodates highly complex product and service configurations as standard functionality. SAP CPQ easily supports complex quoting for a variety of industry verticals including, but not limited to, manufacturing, insurance, software, high tech, and telecommunications. 
  • Is effective in non SAP environments such as Salesforce, NetSuite, Microsoft etc. 
  • Can implement highly complex and rules based pricing and discounting scenarios and schemes.
  • The document generator in SAP CPQ dynamically creates complex documents including, but not limited to, proposals, quotations, orders, service agreements Word, PDF or Excel.  
  • Customers can manage quotations of subscription based products and maintain current client assets within the SAP CPQ application for the quoting upgrades, downgrades and mid term adjustments.

Overall, SAP CPQ is easily customized and can be maintained by an experienced administrator

  • Offers a wizard based creation of many business, product, discounting and pricing rules using boolean logic, not code. 
  • For complex quoting scenarios, SAP CPQ offers advanced customization support using Python scripting. 
  • Contains a powerful, but easily configurable workflow engine for quotation processes as well as quotation approvals.
  • Offers plug in integrations  to DocuSign and SAP Contract Lifecycle Management.
  • Other productized integrations to SAP CPQ include  SAP Variant Configurator, C4C, CRM (On Premise), ECC, Commerce etc.

Ask About CPQ


Decisions, decisions: SAP CPQ, SAP Commerce, or Both? 

The following are high level use cases. Assumptions are that there are in most cases some integration to either customer master data or CRM as well as an ERP or back office system(s). These scenarios are designed to give some high level context to what goes into deciding the proper solution. 

Use Case #1 - Oil and Gas (Manufacturing)

The customer is a manufacturer of devices used in the oil and gas industry. Pumps, gauges, drilling equipment etc. The product choices rely on information such as what type of material is being drilled, depth, diameter etc. 

The quote users are internal sales people that are required to: 
  • Quote products that have complex configurations with many components that may change based on how the product is being used. 
  • Are able to discount or enter allowances within specific rules for either each line item or the total order.
  • Are required to send highly detailed quotations or proposals to clients and may have the option to incorporate data sheets or product literature. 
  • Are providing quotations or orders that often require approvals and may require multi level approvals. 
  • In almost all cases, the client is known and the sales process is supported by a CRM system such as SAP Sales Cloud (C4C), Salesforce, Microsoft Dynamics CRM or NetSuite. 
Recommended Solution: SAP CPQ 


  • Need for create complex configurations in the application.
  • Need for complex discounting and allowances that are rule based.
  • Highly detailed and dynamic quotations and proposals are needed for the client.
  • Multi level or complex quote approval processes are required. 

Use Case #2 - Technology (Camera Manufacturing)

The customer is an original equipment manufacturer (OEM) of cameras. The cameras are sold as a body and then accessories such as the lenses, cases, flash attachments etc are added.

  • The manufacturer sells to a variety of re-sellers including Amazon, camera stores, the US government etc. 
  • The re-sellers order the various components at various quantities.
  • For new products, the re-seller requires seeing detailed specifications and at times videos as to the camera or accessory’s features and benefits. 
  • The re-sellers want to come online and place orders using a purchase order number or an authorization code. 
  • The camera manufacturer wants to determine, by customer, what are the high margin products that each buyer will tend to order.
  • The manufacturer sells discontinued models and accessories to the public through their website. 
Recommended Solution: SAP Commerce


  • Configurations are not complex - Camera body and lenses plus accessories are what are required.
  • Re-sellers want the ability to order various quantities online using a corporate credit card or purchase order.
  • The camera manufacturer wants to have marketing analytics and personalize offers by customer.
  • The camera manufacturer also sells products to consumers.
  • Different storefronts by type of customer (B2B, B2C or B2B2C) would be required.


Use Case #3 - Products and Services Distributor

The customer is a distributor of a variety of products and services. Among their products are industrial tools, solar energy systems for industries and large scale residential applications, and forklifts, generators, loaders etc.. 

  • The customers want to order industrial tools and parts online using either a credit card or corporate purchase order. 
  • The large equipment purchases can also be leased or rented on a long term contract.
  • The solar energy systems requires complex configurations that are supported by a detailed site analysis.
  • Some larger clients want product catalogs to be shared with their purchasing systems. 
  • Complex installations can mean complex calculations to size the equipment as well as complex pricing involving product, services, labor etc. 
  • Installations and implementation services are available for the solar installations.
  • Service contracts are available for some of the larger industrial tools as well as the large equipment. There is a need to allow for self service renewals on the service contracts. 
Recommended Solution: SAP Commerce and SAP CPQ


  • Self service requirements plus internal sales quoting requirements points to having both Commerce and CPQ.
  • The ability to “share” or “punchout” product catalogs to a buyers procurement system points to an SAP Commerce deployment.
  • Complex configurations and detailed analysis indicates that SAP CPQ utilizing a guided selling or customized survey format to assist with product selection is best.
  • Rental and leasing contracts points to extensive subscription management functionality to be built into the solution. Depending on the complexity, either SAP Commerce or SAP CPQ can be utilized. 
  • Quotes often require complex pricing and product sizing calculations. In this case, SAP CPQ and it’s ability to incorporate those calculations would be a good solution. 

SAP CPQ and SAP Commerce are valuable assets to your sales operations and your sales team. If you are still unsure of which product is better suited for your business, please reach out to our expert team at We want to see you get the best solution for your team and will do everything in our power to help you get there! 

Want to learn more about how SAP CPQ and SAP Commerce can improve your business? Just go to or find more information on our blog. 


Find the author on LinkedIn: Bill Thane, SAP CPQ Sr. Consultant, Canidium