How to Use Easy Digital Downloads to Create an Ecommerce SaaS

How to Use Easy Digital Downloads to Create an Ecommerce SaaS


In recent years, the WordPress platform has evolved to where it now has the ability to power different applications, including SaaS platforms.  One of the main reasons this is possible is because of the WordPress REST API.  WordPress users are given access to several eCommerce solutions. This is one of the main reasons it has become such a popular option.  Implementing an eCommerce system like Easy Digital Downloads (EDD) is more than just checking out and charging bank cards.  It offers clear integration between a marketing automation platform and your WordPress website.

In this article, we’re taking a closer look at how you can use Easy Digital Downloads to power a SaaS product.  We’ll cover how you can use it to limit access to WordPress Rest API endpoints in two different ways.  The first will cover when WordPress also powers the app.  The second will look at an app built outside of WordPress.

A Hybrid Approach

If you have chosen to use WordPress alongside another platform like Laravel or VueJS, you often find that API requests to your app won’t pass through WordPress.  This means you will need to look into integrating Easy Digital Downloads and EDD Recurring with the external app.  In this situation, an API request to the app is needed when a subscription on the WordPress platform is created, updated or renewed.

What is SaaS?

Software as a service or SaaS is a specific software distribution model.  In this distribution model, a third-party provider will host applications and makes them accessible for online customers.  Also, alongside infrastructure as a service (IaaS) and platform as a service (PaaS), SaaS makes up the three main categories of cloud computing.

Selling Access to WordPress REST API Endpoints

In addition to this, the vast majority of SaaS products will sell you API access.  Sometimes this can be the entire function of the product.  Google Maps API works well as an example here.  In other cases, SaaS products will offer its own interface. This is complete with a limit on the number of times you can use the service per month. This will require rate-limiting API endpoints.  Also, even if your chosen SaaS product is not based on rate-limiting, it will still offer a rolling subscription.  Plus, if you’re still using the REST API, you need to control access based on your subscription.

You can easily expand beyond integrating EDD and EDD recurring with your external app to control access to a WordPress REST API route.  This is usually the route that provides your service.  For example, if your product is pet walking, the walks will be scheduled by having your app make POST requests to this route.

Is WaaS – WordPress As a SaaS the Future?

This article will hopefully give you lots of ideas on how you can create a WordPress powered SaaS.  Whether you use WordPress to facilitate eCommerce functions or for your whole application, WordPress is a fantastic tool at your disposal.  WordPress is a great platform for these types of projects!

Have you integrated Easy Digital Downloads with your WordPress REST API?  Let us know in the comments section below.