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What Is Embedded Integration and How to Use It for B2B SaaS

What Is Embedded Integration and How to Use It for B2B SaaS

The SaaS market is expanding quickly. Hundreds of SaaS companies are started every year. And the number of software verticals keeps increasing, with many B2B SaaS apps addressing narrow verticals. Embedded integration can ensure that the data from these apps is shared with other apps in each customer's tech stack.

How can you guarantee that your SaaS app stays ahead of the competition? One way is to be intentional about what you build versus what you buy. Building takes time – time your competitor might be using to better advantage. With that said, it makes sense to build your core app in-house. It's your differentiator in the market.

But is your dev team used most effectively to build additional functionality for analytics, reporting, dashboards, and integrations in-house? Or are these areas where embedding third-party tools would allow your SaaS app to gain excellent functionality quickly and at a fraction of the cost of building in-house? Would embedded software integration give you an edge without disrupting the work on your core app?

What is embedded integration?

Embedded integration is the practice of building integrations using in a third-party tool and embedding them into one of the apps they are connecting. Much like with embedded dashboards, embedded integrations are incorporated with the app so that end users see them as another app feature.

Since embedded integrations are app features, they can be discovered, filtered, configured, activated, and deactivated from within the app. As needed, customers can perform these tasks themselves without the help of the vendor support or DevOps.

Embedded integrations are coded, tested, deployed, and supported via an embedded iPaaS (or embedded integration platform as a service).

What is an embedded iPaaS?

An embedded iPaaS is a set of tools that enables a software company to quickly build reusable, configurable integrations and deliver them to its customers as a seamless part of its app.

It's called embedded because it has an integration marketplace that SaaS teams can white-label and embed in their product to create a self-activated, in-app integration experience for end users.

An embedded iPaaS is an end-to-end platform with everything a SaaS company needs to build productized integrations, deliver them to customers in an in-app marketplace, run them in production, and provide support.

Using embedded integration for B2B SaaS solutions

Implementing an embedded integration solution can provide many advantages over building integrations in-house. But is it right for you? Here are some scenarios where it makes sense to implement embedded integration:

  • You need many integrations.
  • Your integrations are complex.
  • You need to improve the integration experience for your customers.

You probably don't need embedded integration if:

  • You have a handful of integrations.
  • Your integrations aren't complex.
  • An integration is the core of what you provide.

What are the benefits of embedded integration?

Let's say you need several complex integrations, placing you with those who would benefit most from the embedded integration approach.

Let's review a few of these benefits:

  • Get to market faster. Speed is everything when it's a race to beat competitors to launch your product or the next game-changing feature. You'll need upfront dev work to incorporate an embedded iPaaS, but far less than is required to build an integration platform and many integrations in-house.
  • Productize your integrations. An embedded iPaaS includes a low-code integration designer that empowers non-developers to build productized integration workflows that can be configured and deployed to multiple customers. Building one-off integrations is not a sustainable approach.
  • Let devs write code when needed. In addition to providing a low-code integration designer, an embedded iPaaS lets devs write code when needed. Integrations are hard, with "non-standard" often being the standard. Make sure your devs don't get boxed in.
  • Leverage expertise. Incorporating an embedded iPaaS lets you benefit from the vendor's deep expertise with integrations. Your devs won't need to become embedded integration experts overnight.
  • Provide increased functionality. When you incorporate an embedded iPaaS into your app, you get more functionality than if you built it in-house. When you add a complex app feature (such as an integration platform) yourself, time and resource constraints mean you're likely to implement the bare minimum functionality.
  • Fit the way you build software. An embedded iPaaS allows you to incorporate it into your existing processes. You can manage your integration code in your current source control system, and feed integration log events into your existing monitoring and alerting tools.
  • Decrease maintenance effort. Maintenance and updates are included when you leverage an embedded iPaaS for a part of your app. You gain a huge ongoing efficiency win by not having to maintain complex but non-core features of your product.
  • Reduce costs. No one likes to get another invoice every month. But when you factor in the time savings for your dev, onboarding, and support teams, you end up spending far less on integrations if you use an embedded iPaaS.
  • Provide a first-class customer experience. An embedded iPaaS provides an integration marketplace that you can white-label and embed in your platform. Customers can explore your integration offerings, self-activate and configure the ones they need, and use self-service tools like logging, monitoring, and alerting – without leaving your app.

Conclusion

Knowing when you should use third-party tools in your SaaS app can be challenging. But when it comes to integrations, the time and cost savings that come with using an embedded iPaaS should simplify that decision.

An embedded iPaaS allows you to expand your team's capabilities without expanding your team. It also ensures that the user experience is consistent from your app to the embedded integrations, increases app stickiness, and reduces customer churn.

Contact us for a demo to learn how an embedded iPaaS can help you implement embedded integration for your customers. Or take advantage of our free trial to check out the details yourself.


About Prismatic

Prismatic is the integration platform for B2B software companies. It's the quickest way to build integrations to the other apps your customers use and to add a native integration marketplace to your product. A complete embedded iPaaS solution that empowers your whole organization, Prismatic encompasses an intuitive integration designer, embedded integration marketplace, integration deployment and support, and a purpose-built cloud infrastructure. Prismatic was built in a way developers love and provides the tools to make it perfectly fit the way you build software.

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