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04 Jun

GrandNode vs nopCommerce - what's the difference?

List of content

1. Introduction

A comprehensive guide which describes the difference between GrandNode and nopCommerce. We face a lot of misunderstandings during our daily work, so I've decided to explain it in detail. From this article, you will learn what is GrandNode, what is nopCommerce, what is nopCommerce and GrandNode structure, finally you will get detailed comparison about nopCommerce performance and GrandNode performance, you will find some features comparison to get knowledge about the differences in both e-commerce platforms and finally you will find information about which platform is better – GrandNode or nopCommerce?

2. What is the GrandNode?

If we want to detailly describe what is GrandNode, we would need to jump into the history a little. GrandNode is a typical e-commerce platform, based on top of the latest ASP.NET Core. From a sea of other platforms, you can notice that we decided to use totally different database engine than the majority of e-commerce platforms. We are convinced that MongoDB guarantees much better performance and much lower maintenance costs than a paid MSSQL license. 

GrandNode can be a perfect choice for developers who are looking for a tool, which will create each type of marketplace for them, according to customer needs. Below you can find the types of marketplaces which are perfect to create with GrandNode:

- Simple online store - the most common usage of GrandNode. Typical online store with simple products, products' variants, grouped products,
- Marketplace with digital products - sell the games, mp3, videos, pictures or anything you want with full support for digital products,
- Auction portal - with Auction products, you are able to create a second eBay or Allegro without third-party plugins!
- Reservation portal - GrandNode can be a perfect choice for a website for hotel, apartments. With Reservation type products you are able to create a perfect website to handle reservations. You can check the real example of such page - https://veganhouse.pl - it's a page made by one of our users.
- E-Learning portal - After courses release, GrandNode became a perfect choice to create a fully functional e-learning portal with paid access to premium content. You can create a portal like Udemy or Coursera easily. You can follow our guide and get knowledge about such portal creation.
- Multi-vendor marketplace - GrandNode is possibly the best multi-vendor marketplace available for free. I also recommend visiting our guide about multi-vendor marketplace creation.

3. What is nopCommerce?

From the other side - nopCommerce, well-known open-source platform, also based on top of the .NET Core, but with MSSQL and MySQL database engine. It's not a time to compare the databases, if you are curious what's the difference between NoSQL and SQL databases, you should definitely read our blog post about it. 

nopCommerce was created in the 2008 year and it's developed to these days. Due to age, nopCommerce boasts a much larger community than GrandNode. 

4. GrandNode vs nopCommerce - performance

One of the hottest topics in the case of GrandNode and nopCommerce comparison. In this chapter, I will present the real comparison between nopCommerce and GrandNode. To perform the most realistic tests we use the same environment.

Our tests were performed on Digital Oceans servers, based in Frankfurt to get the lowest latency. On the screenshot below, you can find the parameters of the servers. I've used pretty nice servers, which are usually not used at smaller stores. It's important to mention at the very beginning, that if you use the cheapest clouds, shared servers the scores will be much lower in both platforms. 

CPU parameters

App server parameters

So, are you curious what's the result of my tests? Jump into the details, you can be surprised. To perform load testing, I've used the free, online tool called Loader.io and a few configurations. Prerequisites Default nopCommerce installation Default GrandNode installation Database server on the different machines but on the same location CSS & JS Minification All products – category with all available sample products (around 50 products on a single page). 

It's also worth mentioning that you can see different scores if you use the MSSQL instead of MySQL, which I used in this example. However, I wasn't able to create SQL Server in the same location, so the test wouldn't be accurate. You can also get totally different scores if you will have larger distance between your location and server location.

As you can see on the screenshots below, Google Page Speed Insight test results are pretty decent in both platforms. However, it's a just the default template, so the score will be totally different if you upload your photos, use external themes, or use external plugins. 

Page speed insights - GrandNode

Page speed insights - nopCommerce

Scenario #1 – Homepage stress test with 10 concurrent users per second during the 1-minute test (600 users in a minute)

A pretty simple test, I've started from the lowest number of concurrent users. In the beginning, I didn't know from which level I should start. So I decided to take the lowest possible number of concurrent users, so 10 per second. Both platforms handled that traffic, however, GrandNode has more stable results and shorter loading times.

As you can see on the screenshot below GrandNode ended with 311 ms avg. response time and 600 users online during the one minute.

10 users per second during the 1 minute test

nopCommerce finished the same test with 423 ms avg. response time and also 600 users online. However, as can be seen from the graph, the loading time was very dynamic and varied with each request. GrandNode gave a stable average time in this place.

10 per seconds home page nopCommerce

Scenario #2 – Homepage stress test with 50 concurrent users per second during the 1-minute test (3000 users in a minute)

The next text was configured to simulate 50 concurrent users per second during the 1-minute test, so it should result in 3000 users in a minute. 

GrandNode performed better than during the previous test. The results were amazing, 141 ms average response time for 50 concurrent users. It gave us almost 3000 users in a minute. I'm not counting one stroke, because I don't know the reasons for it, again the results were very stable. For sure you can agree that 50 concurrent users are the result of satisfying not one shop owner. The fact is that such numbers in many small/medium stores will only be sporadic at the time of great promotions.

50 users per second on home page GrandNode

In the case of nopCommerce, which was a surprise for me, the test was aborted. And it wasn't possible to handle 50 concurrent users during one-minute test sessions.

50 users per second on home page nopCommerce

Scenario #3 – Homepage stress test with 250 concurrent users per second during the 1-minute test (15000 users in a minute)

Following the blow and knowing that GrandNode remained alone on the battlefield, I decided to follow the blow and the number of concurrent users increased dramatically.

GrandNode had to handle 250 concurrent users, so 15,000 users in a minute. What were the results? On the one hand, impressive. Without any tricks, tweaks, the standard version withstood this move with an average response time of 4.3 s. On the other hand, 4.3 s is a result that should definitely be improved before the production release of the final store.

250 users per second on home page GrandNode

Scenario #4 – Homepage stress test with 500 concurrent users per second during the 1-minute test (30000 users in a minute)

The last test on the homepage was configured to totally destroy the application. However, I couldn't do it. 30,000 online users during the minute. It results in 4.8 s average response time and it is a score which should be definitely improved. For me, personally, the store owners should guarantee better loading time during that load. No one will wait almost 5 seconds until the store opens.

500 users per second on homepage GrandNode

Scenario #5 – All products stress test with 10 concurrent users per second during the 1-minute test (600 users in a minute)

The second test was created to provide clear information about the loading time of the full page of products. In both cases, All products category had 45 products. I've started from the same configuration - 10 concurrent users per seconds to compare what will be the difference between homepage and category page.

GrandNode ended with 327 ms average response time

10 users per second on All products page

In the same test, nopCommerce ended up with 1.7 s average loading time. So as you can see, at the moment when on the main page, with a small number of elements at the beginning, the differences were not visible, when loading more products, real system performance begins to appear. nopCommerce had almost 6 times slower response time than GrandNode.

All products 10 users per second nopCommerce

Scenario #6 – All products stress test with 25 concurrent users per second during the 1-minute test (1500 users in a minute)

The second config scenario in that category had 25 concurrent users. What was to be expected, GrandNode had pretty awesome results, what we can't say about nopCommerce.

GrandNode ended this test with 264ms average response time. 

25 users per second on all products GrandNode

Where nopCommerce ended with 5.9 s average response time. The difference is huge, isn't it? 

25 users per second on All product page nopCommerce

Scenario #7 – All products stress test with 50 concurrent users per second during the 1-minute test (3000 users in a minute)

This scenario is crucial in this test, 50 concurrent users were crucial for nopCommerce, which didn't handle this test. 

GrandNode finished this scenario with a 2.1 s average response time. This scenario has shown that there is already a place for improvements. With this amount of concurrent users, stability dropped slightly, which can be seen from the differences in individual loading times.

50 users per second GrandNode all products

In the case of the nopCommerce store was accessible only for 7 first users from the whole pool. Then the test was aborted due to no response from the application

50 users per second on all products nopCommerce

Scenario #8 – All products stress test with 100 concurrent users per second during the 1-minute test (6000 users in a minute)

The last test remained as the icing on the cake. Deadly as it turned out. We've created 100 concurrent users and it was too much for a default configuration. Only 17 customers from 6000 possible users were able to visit the store.
100 per second on all products - GrandNode

5. GrandNode vs nopCommerce - differences

So, what's the main difference? As you can see, the first fundamental difference is the type of database. The second difference is the codebase. It's a fact that nopCommerce was a core for GrandNode, however, it was 5 years ago. Both platforms use ASP.NET Core 3.1. GrandNode puts on the recommendations of the developers from Microsoft and uses the asynchronous code, to increase the performance of the application. It was one of the most important changes a few versions ago. It was a pretty time-consuming task to rewrite the whole app, but we are pretty sure that it's the correct approach and this spent time will benefit in the future. nopCommerce uses the standard code. In that matter, we bet on the modern codebase and modern solutions, just to improve the performance of the application.

Multi-vendor features comparison

GrandNode

  • Easy registration for vendor accounts
  • Independent, separated admin panel for each vendor
  • Vendor notes
  • Vendor address details
  • Exclusive for GrandNode:
  • Multiple independent shipping methods and rates
  • Possibility to buy only products from particular vendor in one cart
  • Vendor reviews
  • Separated vendor return requests
  • Add possibility to assign documents (files, external invoices, purchase orders) to vendors accounts
  • Customizable vendor profiles on public store (with Generic Attributes)
  • Vendor Commissions & Easy and automatic payouts

nopCommerce

  • Easy registration for vendor accounts
  • Independent, separated admin panel for each vendor
  • Vendor address details
  • Vendor notes
  • Exclusive for nopCommerce:
  • Vendor attributes

Product-types comparison

GrandNode

  • Simple Products
  • Grouped Products
  • Digital Products
  • Auction Products
  • Reservation Products
  • Product Kits
  • Courses

nopCommerce

  • Simple Products
  • Grouped Products
  • Digital Products

Choosen exclusive features

GrandNode

  • Progressive Web App
  • BrainTree
  • Amazon S3/Cloudfront and Azure CDN
  • Knowledge base system
  • Firebase Push Notifications
  • SEO Friendly URLs for filtering
  • Product attributes and specifications on product boxes
  • DotLiquid

nopCommerce

  • Estimate shipping box on product
  • PayPal Smart Buttons
  • MySQL support
  • Avalara Tax Provider
  • ShipStation integration
  • Allow customers to check gift card balance

6. Which platform is better?

As always it's the most tricky question. And honestly, there is no right answer for it. For sure each business can take benefits from both platforms. GrandNode is a perfect choice for the Medium and Enterprise Business, where nopCommerce, due to large community, can be a perfect choice for beginners and users which starts business and requires a lot of free resources.

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