The fastest way to create Backend

Hi indie hackers 👋

I'm searching for the fastest backend solution for my SaaS project. I have a fully front-end application and want to have a Laravel backend for accounts, subscriptions, billing, payments, premium accounts handling.

My main focus is on the front-end app and I have not so much time dedicated to the backend, so I need a SaaS starter project, which I will customize and develop according to myself.

What practice do you have for such a SaaS project, which you have to launch in a small period of time? Maybe you are using some paid services for it? Or maybe someone knows the best open-source Laravel SaaS starter projects?

How do you start your MVP with Backend (payments, subscriptions) and how much time do you dedicate to it?

  1. 6

    Laravel Jetstream+Laravel cashier enabled me setup subscription in just less than an hour of work. Probably gonna spend more time implementing the UI than in the backend.

    1. 2

      I was searching for something like things, thank you!!! Will try it.

      1. 3

        Be aware that Laravel Jetstream v2 and the new Laravel Spark (cheaper than the current Laravel Spark or even free) will be released soon. I wouldn't spend too much time on a fancy payment system :)

        1. 2

          Thanks for this information, I will be watching for updates.

          I don't want to spend too much time on the payment system too. And which tools do you use to create a not fancy payment system? Laravel? Jetstream? Spark?

          1. 3

            We started with Jetstream for our Saas and we were waiting for the new Spark to release but that didn't happen. So we decided to use Cashier Paddle (European Saas owner here). We made a "Billing" tab in the profile section where you can select a plan and it simply opens a Paddle popup, we manage the plans through a simple "billing.php" config file. To be honest we probably spent too much time on it haha.

            If you want to check it out its at https://thatswhy.app. You can start a free trial and see how it works. No cc required or anything, no spammy emails.

            1. 2

              I check it, looks awesome. I think I will stick with Jetstream and Casher. Thank you for your help!!!

  2. 5

    I built Nhost specifically for this use case.

    It's like Google Firebase but with SQL and GraphQL (everything autogenerated).

    1. 2

      Like Firebase in its capabilities and easy of use, but way better as it's backed by PostgreSQL.

    1. 1

      Wow, thank you, helpful post.

      1. 1

        You're welcome! :)

  3. 4

    Firebase + Stripe all the way

    1. 1

      Firebase isn't your back-end, it's Google's. The OP is asking for a Laravel starter project.

    2. 1

      Thank you for your answer, will do research about it.

      1. 0

        I know you mentioned Laravel, but totally agree with @Flurly

        1. 1

          I just tried it and it is the perfect thing (for more front-end developers). But there is some disadvantage of using Firebase. If you will have a lot of users in the first stage and after some time you will have to change the backend, you will not be able to migrate those users.

            1. 1

              Yes, you can export all the data with hashed passwords but are you can reuse this data in another backend (with a different hash system)?

              1. 1

                That's true, but that disadvantage is not only related to firebase, but to all auth providers. :)

                1. 2

                  Yes, not only for firebase. But, personally for me, better to have all users in my own server, rather than in Google cloud and use instead Laravel to do it.

                  For fast and easy solutions, yes, Firebase is the best way to go.

  4. 3

    Google cloud functions is pretty fast if you know express js. All you need to do is, upload the expressjs code as a zip using gcloud command and it gives you a url that you can use from your frontend for calling your APIs. it does not give you a great performance but gets the job done for most MVPs

    1. 1

      Yes, it sounds very easy and useful tool. But If you will have a lot of users in the first stage and after some time you will have to change the backend, you will not be able to migrate those users from google. I think I will want to have all users on my own server, in the future.

      ...But maybe I’m wrong and there’s some kind of workaround for that.

  5. 3

    Laravel is pretty much a starter package in itself. I use it for everything.

    You can have stripe set up in a day if you know what you're doing and that has you more than covered for payments and subs.

    1. 2

      Thank you for your answer. I know Laravel and was using it earlier, but I just want to have all the backend in 1-2 days and I'm searching for the fastest way.

  6. 2

    Laravel comes with a lot out of the box, but you might want to check out @tonylea's https://devdojo.com/wave if you want even more built in. Since he provides training as well, that would likely be a very fast way to go.

    Disclaimer: I haven't used his starter kit, but I have bought his SaaS Adventure product and it was a great value.

    1. 2

      @alchemist, thanks for the link back and the referral ;) Appreciat it!

    2. 2

      Thank you, I definitely will check this tool, saw a lot of replies about the wave tool.

  7. 2

    https://strapi.io/ is a great place to start. Gives you speed of developing APIs, comes with a built in admin dashboard and is highly customizable which you might need as you scale.

    1. 1

      Thank you, looks interesting!

    1. 1

      Looks interesting, thank you.

  8. 2

    It really depends what you need your backend to do.

    Google handles all of our billing and payments so thankfully, ours doesn't need to do any of that. Ours is essentially a data gathering / data generation engine and management platform for our app. We did (do) have user registration and authentication but we're in the process of changing it. We went from nothing to having our app in the Play Store and the backend complete in 9 months.

    Our first business idea (that we're in the process of abandoning) utilized a custom integration with Square and it was pretty shaky. If you have the ability to leverage a pre-built platform that you know works, man that's the way to go.

    1. 1

      Thank you for such a detailed answer!!!

  9. 2

    It's very hard to answer your last question. Backends are all different, so you can't really size it as a general number of hours that is consistent for everyone. Depends hugely on your requirements and on your skill level.

    Personally I find my backends take less time because there's no "i need to try this button in green" type of hesitation, as it happens to me with frontend. Requirements are normally much cleaner and more direct than on the frontend.

    1. 1

      Anyway, there is truth in what you say that sometimes, a backend is created faster than a frontend.

      I just want to have a backend in one day, so I'm searching for the fastest way.

      1. 2

        In fairness, if you can leverage an external service for subscriptions, billing and payments, all you got to do is the users, which is fairly simple and for most cases is just a copy-paste from an existing project.

        1. 1

          Yes, it makes sense.

  10. 2

    My product solves this for Node/React devs, but not Laravel. Have you checked out spark.laravel.com?

    1. 2

      Yes, I saw Laravel spark and I'm searching for alternatives. But if I will not find some, I will use it, I think.

  11. 1

    Firebase is love !! Try out as a frontend dev you will just love it for shipping products like a beast!

  12. 1

    AWS Amplify can get you going pretty quick

    1. 1

      It is like Firebase, will check, thank you.

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