adobe marketing cloud vs.  acquia
Acquia Named a Leader in the 2024 Gartner® Magic Quadrant™ for DXP

Adobe Marketing Cloud vs. Acquia: Which is the Most Valuable Long-Term Investment?

June 1, 2021 6 minute read
Choosing a DXP is a long-term investment. In the choice between Adobe Marketing Cloud vs. Acquia, which solution offers the better ROI?
adobe marketing cloud vs.  acquia

When considering your options for Digital Experience Platform (DXP) solutions, there is an understanding that Acquia and Adobe are both top options. Acquia and Adobe have each been recognized as a Leader in Gartner’s 2024 Magic Quadrant for DXPs and regularly receive the highest marks from the market for their security and compliance and other capabilities.

On the surface, differentiating the value of each DXP may appear challenging, but it’s important to remember that choosing a DXP is a long-term investment. Organizations need to weigh everything from implementation to maintenance to onboarding to special skills and technical resources when determining if a DXP is truly going to bring value to their business.  

Total return on investment (ROI) is determined by a multitude of factors and needs to be analyzed over time to see how well a solution is at helping reach and grow specific business goals. The ability to serve different teams, adapt to changing circumstances in the market and scale elastically with continued business growth are all critical to determining if a DXP is a real asset to success or simply another shiny tool in your tech stack. We wanted to prove that in the Acquia vs. Adobe debate, Acquia’s DXP is the best solution for generating a positive ROI from day one and for years to come. When it comes to the differences in ROI between Adobe and Acquia, let’s look at three big areas with a magnifying glass: integrations, learning curve and total cost of ownership.

1.Integrations: Proprietary Complexity vs. Open Flexibility 

As cited by CMS Wire in 2019, Gartner found that “through 2021, 85% of effort and cost in a DXP program will be spent on integrations with internal and external systems, including the DXP's own, built-in capabilities.” Without a seamless way to connect and leverage different systems integrations can turn into a complex process that directly correlates to extra dollars. Most Adobe Experience Manager’s (AEM) connections to internal and external systems require heavy customization. These custom connections are not only time consuming to create, but they also make it that much harder for Adobe customers to upgrade to the latest versions of AEM. 

Unlike Adobe’s proprietary suite of solutions, Acquia’s open DXP has a flexible and future-proof build. Founded in the open source Drupal community, Acquia’s API-first architecture connects easily with any bought or built solution. Through open technology, teams benefit from a future proof architecture that can connect with new tools and features, including ones that haven’t even been dreamed up yet! This forward-thinking approach to integration and upgrades means teams can spend less time trying to fit all the pieces together and more time focusing on leveraging the combined power of all the solutions they need to design and deliver excellent digital experiences. 

2. Learning Curve: Arduous to Run vs. Adaptable by Design  

Beyond just initial implementation costs, the time and effort spent to achieve a positive ROI for a new solution also must account for how difficult that solution is to maintain and manage. The complexity of Adobe tools commonly results in costly, ongoing professional services or third-party agencies for building and running efficiently. Since Adobe requires businesses to employ multiple products from their own Experience Cloud to be truly successful, teams must often have an Adobe specialist on hand or rely on partner support to reap the true value from these tools. Needing this level of specific technical knowledge into all of Adobe’s offerings limits how quickly new users can begin shaping new experiences. The result? A slower time to market and many potential missed opportunities.

Acquia provides greater autonomy for business users by providing low-code tools that simplify authoring and publishing. Through low-code site building solutions like Acquia Site Studio and the drag-and-drop capabilities of Acquia CMS, marketers and non-technologists have everything they need to do their jobs right out of the box. In mere hours after installing Acquia CMS, anyone can build and launch new web pages in only a few hours, without IT bottlenecks or additional services needed. With your business users no longer relying on expert input for every new change or update, brands can complete projects on shorter timelines and smaller budgets. 

3.Cost of Ownership: Is Your Solution Creating More Value Than What You Put Into It?

The total cost of ownership of a solution extends far beyond the initial sticker price. It accounts for every dollar that is spent on making that solution usable. This significantly higher cost is not something that can be overlooked when calculating and achieving a positive ROI. Adobe’s multi-product dependencies can limit your integration options and potential to expand on the value of the solutions. These high upfront costs paired with the slow time to learn and get up and running with all of Adobe’s different features and tools means it’s likely that most businesses will struggle to show a positive ROI in two years or less when using AEM. Unfortunately, today’s digital experience timelines are shorter than ever, and customers expect value fast and on demand. So, most brands can’t afford to wait around to see success. They need to make an immediate impact.

With Acquia’s roots in the open source Drupal community and our own well-vetted team of Drupal experts in house, businesses won’t have to worry about finding expert help through a third party to keep their solutions running at peak performance. Acquia’s platform was born in the cloud and works immediately with thousands of marketing tools and solutions already on the market. Drupal is one of the largest open source projects in the world and is widely adopted and supported by a vast community that helps drive innovation. Acquia’s DXP readily integrates with over 20,000 Drupal modules today and makes it easy for businesses to build and customize the environment to their needs. Acquia’s DXP employs a composable architecture that empowers businesses to quickly package and assemble different sets of business capabilities, content components and functionality like building blocks across multiple channels and interfaces. This compossibility extends the value of an already powerful solution to scale with new developments. By putting the power of shaping digital experience directly into the hands of developers and marketers, brands have greater control over their vision and a lower total cost of ownership. 

If you’re searching for a digital solution that is designed for what comes next, Acquia’s DXP is the best bet. With seamless integrations, intuitive site building tools and community-driven innovation, brands that choose Acquia can achieve a positive ROI in a shorter time frame and earn more significant value for their investment overall. 

Try Drupal on the Acquia Cloud Platform for free here and see why enterprise customers choose Acquia. 

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