NetSuite vs Acumatica: Do “pay for what you need” models actually work?

NetSuite vs Acumatica

Buying a new ERP system is a lot like buying a house. It would be best to make the right decision, otherwise, you could be saddled with it for years to come. On average, companies typically take 22 weeks to decide on a single ERP. That goes for a good reason, its best to compare solutions before making a big purchasing decision. When it comes to two ERPs, like NetSuite and Acumatica, which seem fairly similar on the surface, choosing the wrong one could be detrimental to your business. 

In 1999, when their ERP implementation went hay-wire, Hershey’s missed a large shipment of inventory right before Halloween. To make things worse, that shipment contained $100 million worth of chocolate and caused their stock to dip 8%. The painful lesson learned that day was that not all ERPs are equal and not all will perform as expected. That’s why it’s so crucial to fully understand an ERP — the good along with all the bad when making such an important business decision. Thus, when it comes to the two ERPs, NetSuite, and Acumatica, businesses should take a closer look before choosing.

Saas, NetSuite, Acumatica


Acumatica is the SaaS ERP that has been gaining traction in the manufacturing, wholesale, construction, field service, and retail industries. They offer unique pricing options and provide clients the choice between cloud and on-site ERP systems. Their pricing structure is built on a “pay for what you need” model based on applications, licenses, the projected level of consumption, and data storage used.


On the opposite end of the spectrum, NetSuite is a cloud-only SaaS ERP solution. Having been in business for over 22 years, NetSuite has built notoriety as an all-in-one solution for businesses of every industry and size. With a vast array of coverage options such as ERP, eCommerce, CRM, supply chain management, and more, NetSuite provides businesses with a customizable ERP that is built for long term flexibility and longevity. 

some misconceptions with ERP

Some of the Misconceptions

With their growing popularity, it is hard not to compare Acumatica and the industry titan, NetSuite. While on the surface the two seem to have a lot in common, some key differences set them apart. Namely, Acumatica’s functionality and the true flexibility of their payment options for customers.


With businesses in the middle of a pandemic, every day is crisis mitigation, which means the functionality of their operations is not up for debate —they have to perform to the best of their abilities at all times. While Acumatica operates on a “pay for what you need” approach, NetSuite offers a robust set of features out-of-the-box. 

Acumatica features financial functions are nearly on par with what NetSuite delivers. This includes AR/AP, general ledger, multi-currency, fixed asset management, financial planning & analysis, and much more. Beyond that, Acumatica’s General Business Edition includes CRM, as well as basic reporting tools and third-party business intelligence. Ultimately, Acumatica’s “pay for what you need” approach only provides the bare minimum for small businesses. If you are a growing enterprise, having to scrape by on what you need, just won’t cut it.

NetSuite offers support for any industry, wholesale distribution

On the other hand, NetSuite offers a wide array of products and offerings in every industry. NetSuite covers comprehensive financial and planning tools, supply chain and order management, warehouse, and fulfillment, to name a few offerings. Not to mention, NetSuite is completely customizable and custom-tailored to the unique needs of each client. This includes if businesses need something as small as customized reporting, or as large as a NetSuite enhanced eCommerce site or an integrated warehouse. 


Acumatica’s pricing model is a “pay for what you need” structure. Pricing is based on applications, licenses, the projected level of consumption, and data storage used. Additionally, since Acumatica offers both on-premise and cloud solutions, this plays a factor in pricing when considering IT staff’s cost to maintain on-site servers or data storage for the cloud. Conversely, NetSuite offers pricing that varies based on the complexity of your business requirements and users. But their practices are straightforward, and when working with NetSuite or a third party consultant, all prices and project expectations are transparent.

With Acumatica’s “pay for what you need” approach, this leaves businesses unprepared for the unexpected. While this may seem like you are saving money by only paying for what you need, this does not accommodate for the future growth of your business and leaves your business vulnerable to Acumatica’s hidden pricing structure. This ultimately penalizes the growth of your company with hidden costs and veiled expenses. Alternatively, NetSuite offers a transparent look at cost expectations for the life of your ERP.

How Does it Really Compare?

While Acumatica does have a smaller price tag, overall, it lacks the features and functionalities that NetSuite provides. With over 21,000 successful clients, NetSuite has a proven track record of business success in any industry. If you’re interested in getting a quote to see how you can get started using NetSuite, you can contact the team at Kodella.

Our team is composed of industry experts ready to get you started on your journey with NetSuite. As a NetSuite Partner of the Year, two years in a row, Kodella knows how to deliver the best NetSuite solution tailored to your business needs. Contact a representative today!

 NetSuite vs Acumatica Comparison Chart

Acumatica vs NetSuite Comparison Chart

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