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Headless BigCommerce: Total Cost of ownership

Rebuilds, build minutes and how things works in case of hosting of your BigCommerce Headless Storefront or Shopify Headless Storefront

when it comes to deployment of a Headless BigCommerce or Headless Shopify storefront you are going to maintain additional envireonments. 

What elements are required to handle Headless BigCommerce storefront?

Netlify - hosting that will keep both B2storefront Connector and Final HTML Output produced by B2storefront BigCommerce Headless Storefront

How Netlify pricing works?

Hosting providers like Netlify, Vercel or Kinsta charge based on multiple itemized parameters:

 1. Build Minutes.

 2. Traffic.

 3. Space

What are build minutes and why they are needed?

In simple terms build minutes is a compute time, the time required to run an operation on the compute entity, this compute time is used by B2storefront Connector to obtain data from your BigCommerce instance and is used by B2storefront BigCommerce Headless Storefront to build an HTML output.

What impacts those build minutes?

Build minutes are impacted by amount of pages you need to rebuild each time, for example if you have 10000 SKU and you updating daily 2000 SKU's it will cause 2000 of those elements run through build minutes to fetch data and output HTML files.

What can cause increased build minutes usage?

The main reason for increased build minutes usage jump could be a new app installed on your BigCommerce or Shopify store Admin panel that simply run through entire product catalog and do an operation on each one product without changing it's content but it does affect the Last updated date and also triggers a webhook from ecommerce platform that launch the rebuild process.

What can be done to mitigate this issue?

Two options are available

  1. Trigger rebuild manually by clicking the button
  2. Schedule rebuilds to happen every 2-4h a day or 12h a day or every 24h depends on how often you change/update your products

Best part is that both of them can be used together in a hybrid approach, you can trigger manually a rebuild by clicking a button and that will initiate the process of pulling data and building the HTML files in case you just did an important update and want it to go live ASAP and any other updates that are done by 3rd party apps or other team members will be refreshed at the closest scheduled rebuild point.

Important: Change of Images does not cause BigCommerce or Shopify to  trigger a webhook that product was updated. 

In case you changed images your previous image will stop being displayed and you will need to trigger rebuild manually.

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