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Adobe Business Catalyst (Discontinued)

Adobe Business Catalyst (Discontinued)


What is Adobe Business Catalyst (Discontinued)?

Adobe Business Catalyst was a cloud-hosted system for building and managing web content and online stores with a built-in CRM framework in addition to sales, service, and marketing features including eCommerce and Email Marketing tools. It has been end of…

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Product Details

What is Adobe Business Catalyst (Discontinued)?

Adobe Business Catalyst was a cloud-hosted system for building and managing web content and online stores with a built-in CRM framework in addition to sales, service, and marketing features including eCommerce and Email Marketing tools. It has been end of life (EOL) since 2020.

Adobe Business Catalyst (Discontinued) Integrations

Adobe Business Catalyst (Discontinued) Technical Details

Operating SystemsUnspecified
Mobile ApplicationNo

Frequently Asked Questions

Adobe Business Catalyst was a cloud-hosted system for building and managing web content and online stores with a built-in CRM framework in addition to sales, service, and marketing features including eCommerce and Email Marketing tools. It has been end of life (EOL) since 2020.

Adobe Business Catalyst (Discontinued) starts at $10.

Reviewers rate API highest, with a score of 7.9.

The most common users of Adobe Business Catalyst (Discontinued) are from Small Businesses (1-50 employees).
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Reviews and Ratings


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(1-13 of 13)
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Richard Taylor | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 6 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
We have one website created in-house using Adobe Muse hosted on BC, we do use and integrate some of the BC modules. We don't use the Newsletter or email services.
  • Server Uptime is good
  • Online Chat is good
  • Security is good
  • Technical Service is good
  • If a customer has a query they don't listen to the customer they just look at ways to hide behind BC company policy. In the UK if a customer changes a subscription plan by law they have a 14 day cooling off period. BC doesn't allow a plan to be changed once it’s been upgraded even if this is within a 24 hour period. I understand that BC having to comply with international law is not going to happen and that's not what a customer would expect. But what I do expect is for their accounts department to actually consider and review a customer’s requests or simple error's made without just quoting company policy.
  • In my case, I noticed our website was being tagged as NOT SECURE in Google Chrome Browser. I knew BC didn't offer SSL when I tried it a few years back but that I would check to see if they added that service. Sure enough, they added SSL certificates last summer, that’s was great news. So I read that SSL only came with the Platinum Service Plan and upgraded at a cost of $264.13 . Then a few minutes later I noticed that actually, I could have purchased the SSL on my current Web commerce plan (Gold Plan) for just $80. Within 24 hours I requested the upgrade be canceled and to just add SSL to my current plan. After all, we didn’t need a Platinum plan for our needs we only needed the SSL certification. The accounting department said this was not allowed or possible due to their cancellation policy of NO REFUNDS. They even suggested I could change back to GOLD service in the summer and then pay another $80 to add the SSL that would be lost. This is not the service I would expect. In strict comparison and contrast to our domain is hosted with GoDaddy and they will allow customers to change service policy at any time and they always Pro Rata any billing need meaning the customer is never charged for a service they don't want at that time.
  • When a customer upgrades a service it should be upgraded for 12 months from the upgrade date. The old service remaining credit should be deducted from the new service subscription and BC should clearly display the upgrade price for the next 12 months. The customer should be given the opportunity to review the service cancellation policy before checking a check-box and then processing the order.
  • BC fail to communicate important service upgrades such as SSL certification added last year. Someone could have called me on that emails get lost these days so what’s wrong with a plan good old fashioned phone call
  • BC has changed their service plan names, that's not a problem in itself providing its communicated to the customer and that it is 100% adopted across all media platforms, user portal and billing etc. The WebCommerce Plan is also the Gold Plan and I was not aware of that so found it very confusing.
  • When upgrading a service plan BC should provide pop up windows to highlight the company cancellation policy which is good standard practice
The service provision is good the accounts customer service is poor so I would struggle to give BC a better than average review, if only they could offer customers a better accounts service then the value would be much higher.
John Reitz | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 7 out of 10
Vetted Review
We implement BC sites for our web design clients on a regular basis. It is used by the Web Design and Development division of our company as one of several go-to options for CMS. We also use it as the platform for our corporate website. We use or have used almost every feature in Business Catalyst in the time we have used it across 30+ client sites.
  • The Web Apps element of Business Catalyst is unique among hosted CMS systems. It helps us solve unique challenges without involving heavy-duty programmers.
  • As a Hosted CMS, it has a lot of great features without a ton of cost or liability being taken on which is important to us.
  • BC has a growing developer community and has made significant upgrades over the past few years, which don't end up costing us more, and would be very expensive or time consuming in a traditional CMS
  • Our client's like that it is from "Adobe" and that it has Dreamweaver integration. This provides them with a level of comfort that helps us sell the project.
  • There is a lot of documentation out there, but much of it is out of date or lacking in detail or specificity.
  • The biggest weakness of BC is its support. While the chat feature is good, it has long hold times and staff that is not knowledgeable about the product. I doubt anyone in support has ever even built a site with Business Catalyst before. They need US support centers with actual designers or developers who would be able actually help. It seems like 50% of our support questions should be easy but end up being escalated as a "not for the development team" or never answered.
  • The Admin UI could be more intuitive and the In-Content Editing is very difficult to actually use in practice with a novice client.
Adobe Business Catalyst is perfect when you need to create a data driven element for a site. The Web Apps element is great and not something other hosted CMS systems have. It is also a good product when someone wants to make use of multiple modules in one place such as having your website, CRM, online store and email marketing in one place. BC is fine for small sites, but is a bit over complicated and over-priced for a basic brochure-ware type site without any dynamic features. It also does not allow enough customization for a large enterprise level site with a demanding client. As a hosted solution, it has no ability for server-side development or other customization that might be needed on a very complex custom site.
June 08, 2016

Developed for Speed

Aaron Landry | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
We started using BusnessCatalyst across the organization as a solution for lower budget markets.
  • Webapps can be used for various content types and because the interface is simplified and standardized it's easy to give clients the ability to edit content without them having to modify html.
  • The template engine makes adding templates into the system and setting them up very fast. This helps to speed up development time.
  • Because BusinessCatalyst is a hosted solution, it removes the need for Server Management. Now that the BC API is more extensive and the content can be output via JSON, there seems to be nothing you can not do in the system.
  • BusinessCatalyst is a hosted solution and some can view this as a negative due to not having access directly to the server.
  • Some of the BuisnessCatalyst modules seem to never be updated or improved upon and it seems almost impossible to extend them into solutions that don't exist.
  • The Photo Gallery module is really easy to get setup however it is really difficult to extend due to the lack of access to do so.
  • It lacks a tagging system that can be used to output content. Currently it has categories which can be used but I don't think the original intention was this due to there only being three tiers available for use.
When integrating with other systems, it seems to not be a very good fit. For example, if I am a shop and I am not managing my entire inventory within the system, there are ways to get the data into and out of the system but they aren't as easy as integrating a solution on a server. It is very well suited for most if not all marketing websites.
Andrew Conniff | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 3 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
When I first began freelancing web services I discovered Business Catalyst as a superior way to deliver a commercial web page for small businesses on a limited budget. As a web developer I know that a premium enterprise level web site is too expensive for most small companies. This includes the ongoing updates required by their developer. Business Catalyst allows template driven sites that the business owner can edit without hiring costly professionals.
  • The new templates have social connectivity built in which is very nice.
  • The Sites do a good job on newsletter templates and data tracking.
  • The in browser editing is a plus.
  • The initial cost is usually spent on a designer or content developer so the client can focus on a set up fee and then just the on going hosting. No long term fees for developers to come in and make edits.
  • It is SaaS, so the initial savings can seem costly if the site owner wants to redesign. It is still less costly than having a professional enterprise site built for you, but you will be limited by your budget.
  • It has been a while since I used it, but custom pages for businesses on Facebook was something that needed to be built by a developer and implemented.
My colleagues are all web developers, so unless they knew of someone who wanted a small scale site without investing in a modern web app I would not be likely to talk about Adobe Business Catalyst with them.
Jonathan Hodak | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
I worked for a marketing company where we built websites for small to medium sized businesses. We built these websites which were generally fairly small in size but often for companies who had very few people with much in-depth computer or IT knowledge. So Adobe Business Catalyst was a great tool to rapidly create websites for these companies that fit their needs and were easy to edit while being a bit more user-friendly than some other platforms like WordPress can be.
  • Probably one of the easiest e-commerce platforms to work in, it does take setup, but compared to a lot of other e-commerce solutions, this is probably the best one that I have seen that can be designed and implemented custom.
  • Their template system works very well and allows you to create and re-use templates across Adobe Business Catalyst.
  • Their pre-built modules are great, giving people a great way to use common web elements without having to use a plug-in or find some solution, it is simply built in and generally works exactly as you would expect.
  • Adobe Business Catalyst is more of an all-around solution, providing elements that most smaller companies would have a hard time figuring out, since it includes the ability to build websites, send and track e-mails, analytics. It really is a powerful tool that would typically require a fair amount of coding knowledge and expertise but with the system already built, it can be easily modified and edited by those with limited or no coding knowledge at all.
  • They do not have the ability to create and build custom plug-ins for use on websites.
  • They do not support every payment gateway, they support the major ones, and most others, but if you have some very unusual payment gateway, it might not be supported.
  • The custom web apps were absolutely one of my favorite parts of this system, and it is really a shame that they do not allow them to be used on all tiers of the website, you have to get the web commerce tier to edit and use them.

Adobe Business Catalyst is an absolute rock-star for companies that want an all in one solution, who have limited budgets and/or little technical expertise. It will scale well and can grow with your company. It is more complex and more flexible than something like Wix, where your options are heavily limited, but less open than WordPress where you can use plug-ins and custom code to rebuild how anything works. So it is a nice area in the middle.

Adobe Business Catalyst would probably not be a great solution for companies who want absolute control over their website and everything in it and have highly experienced technical resources to build out whatever they need since not every area of the website or server can be modified.

Goran Billingskog | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 6 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Adobe Business Catalyst is a tool that we use for many of our clients. It simplifies the process of getting our clients online and making them look credible. It makes my life easier since I can manage many sites in one place.
  • The e-commerce module is the strength of Adobe Business Catalyst as I see it. It's easy to set up and establish a secure online store.
  • I like using the "content holder" interface. There are building blocks that simplify the process of adding re-usable content to any page.
  • Pricing seems inflexible and many times it's what makes my clients turn to other CMS systems. How can I defend spending $40 just because I want to use the BC Apps but have no use for the e-commerce function?
  • I used to have a plethora of templates that I could use as a starting point. They are now gone and I miss them.
Use BC for e-commerce. If you are not using e-commerce you might look at other CMSs.
Dan Butler | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
I currently use Adobe Business Catalyst in my personal business in multiple roles. As I develop web sites for clients I will upload test designs to BC for their test and approval. This workflow allows me to keep control of the design until it's finally approved. After it is approved I use BC as a resellable product to offer clients. Their analytic platform as well as their online editing capabilities make a great experience for my clients.
  • Analytics: I am able to see on multiple levels traffic, clicks, and most importantly search terms for improving SEO. The reports are easy to generate as well as read, especially for small inexperienced business owners.
  • Marketing: When using the BC platform businesses are able to link up easily with Adobe Marketing to automatically send out emails and newsletters. Its a very smooth and painless process.
  • Online Editing: This is probably the best part of BC. Once a design is approved and launched on the platform, my clients do not have to contact me for small content updates. This frees me up as a small business owner to concentrate on design, new clients, and larger projects for existing clients.
  • Multi Client Management: The dashboard for managing multiple clients as a reseller is a little difficult to get to. There is also no very easy way for me to manage multiple clients at once. I have to log into and out of individual client accounts to do billing or management.
  • Lack of Server support: There are certain server protocols and languages that are not supported using BC. For example I cannot build a custom php database and upload to BC. I am required to use their tools.
I feel that Adobe Business Catalyst (BC) is best suited to small businesses and free lance designers reselling to small businesses. The whole interface is very personal and easy to use from an inexperienced perspective. This makes it a perfect platform for small business websites or even portfolio websites. Its lack of different server side protocols and languages makes it perfect for the small scale web implementation.
September 30, 2015

Business Catalyst Overview

Joel Lowther | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
I am a small business owner and I decided to use Adobe Business Catalyst for my own website and to build websites for my clients using this platform. Using this platform I have been able to create eCommerce sites and introduce/train my clients to the CMS so they have been able to update their own content and products.
  • The ability to link a gateway to a shopping cart is simple and straightforward.
  • There is a lot of documentation on how to use their tools and features
  • The reports and statistics that are available through the admin portal is incredibly useful to be able to understand how to tighten up the usability of the created site.
  • The ability to create simple websites with strong CMS tools.
  • Being able to use custom XML with web apps is non-existent even though they have been working on the issue for awhile. They even showed me a beta version of their web apps that would have done just that. That was about 2 years ago.
  • It's email portal needs a lot of work.
The only time it isn't appropriate that I can think of is if the website has sensitive data and it has to sit on a server that is HIPAA compliant.
Debra Scarpa | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
We use Adobe Business Catalyst to provide our clients with an all-in-one website Customer Management Solution. We have found that our clients love that they can easily edit their website, and that they can send emails through the backend. It is our highest recommended website platform to use for businesses that are looking to grow.
  • Web apps are a great way to create custom functionality for our client's websites that they can easily update at a later time.
  • The ability to duplicate websites saves a lot of productivity time.
  • Email Marketing through the backend and branded auto responders allow for a heightened customer experience. On top of that, these things are easy to set up.
  • The blog module could be improved so there is more functionality and more freedom for easy customization.
  • Multiple files upload into the Media Downloads module would be a great feature to have.
Adobe Business Catalyst is a great platform. However, we tend to not recommend it for large blog based websites or large E-Commerce websites.
Jeff French | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
We use Business Catalyst for our own company's web site and we also develop the majority of our web sites on the Business Catalyst platform. We are a small firm so we use it extensively for automating site editing, development and implementation of our client's sites. Dreamweaver templates were always cumbersome but with the Business Catalyst solution we no longer have to re-upload all affected pages. This also lets us style our navigation either within the administration or with or own CSS built for the site. The Content Holder module is probably our most used because it can hold any piece of information. We then insert the module tag where we know it is prone to being edited often. It is also very simple to teach clients how to edit parts of the site with this method. Those are only a few of the ways Business Catalyst helps us streamline our development process.
  • As mentioned previously, we use the Content Holder module quite often because of the ability to place any html content that is prone to being frequently edited. It simplifies the process and allows us to simplify our templates.
  • We also like the ease of the Photo Gallery and how simple it is to either add or remove photos from the gallery once it has been placed.
  • Media Downloads seems to be a very helpful resource. With its ability to be categorized both by file type and customized categories within the web site and then placed by category also helps us streamline document placement especially when there are large number of those resources to organize.
  • News is obviously a much needed resource and it is simple to add news items, classify them and place them on template pages where they are fed. It is one of the easiest items to teach new clients how to manage.
  • Web Apps is our most prized module because of the ease of creating a database, then being able to style the output in any shape form or fashion.
  • The Web Forms is very helpful and easy to create. Placing the forms is simple especially when inserting as a module. The problem comes after placement. It is time consuming if there are any edits that need to be made to the form. For example, if you are in the U.S., you typically do not want other countries to show up on a dropdown menu. It would be great if BC would allow you to check the countries (or states) that you want to be active. Also, often times within a web form you may want to include to separate address fields. That is not allowed unless you go back and do custom editing for the forms. "Workarounds" are typically possible but for the designer, anything that adds time to the process also cuts down on profitability.
  • Where we enjoy the ease of creating Photo Galleries, we also don't like the fact that you can style the output like you can within other module templates. For example, many clients would like to offer better descriptions and even style the descriptions. If displaying a photo from a art museum, you may want to give the proper title and that would include italicizing the name of the artwork.
  • One of our biggest pet peeves is the fact that BC only offers the European date style when displaying that dates in the modules. You should be able to check a box on which date style should be shown.
  • On Web Apps, almost everything is fantastic EXCEPT for the ability to sort web app items by date. If I wanted to create a calendar of events based on a web app I want to create, I would want to be able to display those items in chronological order.
  • The Event Module is great except the way it uses a quirky form to process payments and reserve events. It should behave more like an ecommerce solution where the form is easier to fill out, customize, submit and process.
The key question to a client would be to ask if they want to be able to do their own web site site maintenance without the need of software. The added benefit of the CMS is that it also comes with the CRM, e-Mail campaign capabilities, reporting and much more.
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
The creative suite by Adobe is being utilized primarily by our design department. We use a variety of Adobe programs, but mostly Illustrator, Photoshop, InDesign, Premiere, and Media Encoder. Our inbound marketing agency handles everything from website designs to video production, so having the Adobe products to support our needs is necessary.
  • The Adobe programs are particularly strong by their continuity throughout the entire system. It is fairly simple to jump from one program to the next with ease, as long as you understand at least one program in depth.
  • The Creative Cloud system does create a very convenient environment for keeping our programs up to date, and offering the ability to download whatever program we might now, rather than forcing us to download EVERY Adobe program.
  • While there can be short comings with some things, for the most part Adobe has done a fantastic job of monitoring trends in the design world and responding to those trends with specific tools.
  • I have run into some Adobe CC shortcomings. Video, specifically, seems to lack options. I was recently required to download a third party system to translate my video into web-ideal formats, such as .ogg and .webm. These are fairly common as web-optimized videos. I was very disappointed that Adobe's fairly advanced video software was unable to export in these formats.
  • In addition to the video software shortcomings, I am usually disappointed with the online help options. Adobe is an extremely expensive product, so I naturally expect to have help at my fingertips whenever I may need it. Unfortunately, I am often relying on public forums, where the only professionals that comment end up redirecting you half a dozen times to find the information you need. It would be positively lovely to have 'chat' capabilities with professionals associated with specific programs.
  • There are some tools that I think could be simplified in some of the programs. A specific example would be InDesign's color swatches and pantone controls. It took quite a while to figure out how to create a 2-color printing safe document, and it is needlessly difficult to accomplish.
Well, folks, I hate to tell you this, but you don't have very many options. Sure, there are open source programs out there, as well as cheap knock-offs of the Adobe products, but you will more than likely end up buying CC after a couple weeks of struggle and strife. My largest criticism for the Adobe products would be the enormous price tag attached, as well as the EXTREMELY limited options to own just one or two Adobe programs. While working at a marketing agency, it comes in handy to have all the programs. If I where to rely on photography as a source of income instead, I would not want to pay money that gets me ALL of the programs. I would want the option to purchase Photoshop, Lightroom, and perhaps one or two other programs alone.
Sean Parnell | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
As an Adobe partner, Business Catalyst is our preferred website content management system for the vast majority of websites we design, develop and implement. We also use Adobe Business Catalyst for our website as well as CRM. We became a partner because Business Catalyst is the easiest web CMS I have ever used over the past 20 years - easiest to develop to, easiest to build out new websites, and easiest for our clients to maintain their own website and add content.
  • It's easy for my design team to turn Adobe InDesign or Photoshop files into HTML and CSS
  • It's easy for my production team to build out the whole site in terms of content and on-site search engine optimization (SEO)
  • It's easy for our clients to log in, add new pages, update the navigation, blog, and add contact forms
  • Some clients really like the email marketing capability, especially as this functionality usually doesn't cost them anything extra
  • Our e-commerce clients really like how easy it is to set up and maintain
  • Adding unique page titles and meta descriptions to the blog has been challenging especially relating to tags and the "pages" that are automatically generated for them - we'd like this to be a lot easier
  • In-context editing is kind of cool but is really slow loading and it's difficult for my design team to set this up properly
  • You cannot redirect certain pages that no longer exist, so our clients get dinged in Google Webmaster Tools for pages no longer there - e.g. database-created pages with question marks in the name, .apsx pages and some other funky file types
  • When uploading contacts from an email list, we have to contact Adobe directly to get them to manually "verify" each contact so we can email them - we've already gotten permission from them and don't want to have to email them just to get there permission again to satisfy Adobe
  • When editing a page, it sometimes loses its formatting after saving in the viewer - the changes are still there, it just doesn't display properly. This used to happen on every save and now happens intermittently
Adobe Business Catalyst is easier to use than WordPress and is infinitely better than other open source platforms like Joomla, Drupal, Umbraco, and Ruby on Rails. This holds true for both website developers to build new websites as well as for end-users to write blogs, edit website content, upload images, embed videos., etc. As a result, Adobe Business Catalyst is ideal for about 90% of websites out there: from business-to-business (our focus as Innovaxis) and small to medium business-to-consumer sites. It's not as useful for large consumer e-commerce sites that need a high degree of customization (where a lot of people use Magento), but Business Catalyst is good for just about everything else. Our clients are very happy with it.
Victor Campos | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Business Catalyst has been used as a CRM solution for a client. The client has an eCommerce aspect and a large database of current, former, and potential clients. A redesign of the client's site was needed, so BC was used in that aspect, too. The client needed a way to market to their uses, so Business Catalyst was ideal for that.
  • Managing the customer database
  • Setting up drip email marketing campaigns
  • A template-based design
  • Initial cost of the platform can be daunting
  • Since the platform itself was in transition, we needed to edit various highly technical aspects to make sure the site didn't go down
Business Catalyst is well-suited for clients that need an all-in-one solution: customer relationship management; product inventory management; eCommerce; email marketing. Because BC is a very powerful and all-encompassing solution, it is not the best one for many clients. They would be paying for many features that they would probably never use.
I like that it is tightly-integrated with Adobe Creative Cloud, specifically, Dreamweaver. This gives one more control to make great designs.
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