7 reasons why you need to get familiar with MACH architecture

By Arso Stojović
Read time 4 min
Posted on April 29, 2024
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MACH architecture

MACH stands for Microservices API-first Cloud-native Headless and is considered a form of composable architecture due to its emphasis on modularity and component-based design, but there are some differences.

The functionality of a composable architecture includes many distinct services, such as search, product discovery, and checkout. In contrast, MACH combines multiple technologies to provide a flexible, open environment that boosts innovation and allows businesses to respond quickly to change.

So, composable architecture is a more general concept that can be applied to various domains, so what is MACH architecture?

What is MACH architecture

What is MACH architecture

As I said, The acronym MACH stands for:

  • Microservices

  • API-first

  • Cloud-native

  • Headless

These 4 items represent a set of technologies that enable flexibility, scalability, and customization. So let's go through every MACH tech stack.

MACH architecture: Microservices

Microservices focus on breaking down the system into independent services that can be managed and scaled independently.

Microservices architecture

Each service is designed to perform a specific business function and can be developed, deployed, and scaled independently. Microservices communicate with each other over well-defined APIs and deliver faster responses that can be deployed more frequently.

MACH architecture: API-first

With the API-first approach, all functionalities are exposed through an API, making it possible to tie together two or more applications or services.


So, how does API work?

  • Step 1: Clients send requests to APIs, specifying desired actions and parameters.

  • Step 2: APIs process these requests, perform operations, and return responses.

  • Step 3: Communication typically occurs over HTTP/HTTPS using standardized data formats like JSON or XML.

  • Step 4: Authentication may be required for security.

  • Step 5: APIs can follow different styles, like REST or RPC.

Through these 5 steps, APIs serve as the interface between different software components, allowing them to communicate, exchange data, and collaborate effectively, regardless of their underlying technologies or implementation details. APIs play a crucial role in enabling integration, interoperability, and extensibility in software systems.

MACH architecture: Cloud-native

Cloud-native development aims to maximize the benefits of cloud computing by leveraging modern architectures, technologies, and practices to build scalable, resilient, and agile applications.


Cloud-native architectures in MACH eliminate the high costs of on-premise infrastructure, such as hosting, site acceleration, security, and uptime, by leveraging cloud-based infrastructure and services.

MACH architecture: Headless

headless architecture

Headless refers to the decoupling of the front end from the back end. Whether it's a webshop, social media, or a mobile app, the front end can be anything that interacts with customers.

All of the systems, procedures, and instruments that manage operations—such as checkout and product information management—run on the backend layer.

Comparison: Traditional vs. MACH architecture

This table provides a concise overview of the key differences between Traditional architecture aka monolithics and MACH Architecture across various aspects.

Traditional vs. MACH architecture comparison

The comparison highlights the significant advantages of MACH over traditional architecture in terms of scalability, flexibility, agility, and resilience. By embracing microservices, API-first design, and technology agnosticism, organizations can modernize their infrastructure, enabling them to meet the demands of today's dynamic and competitive business landscape effectively.

7 reasons for implementing MACH architecture

Moving from monolithic to MACH architecture allows you to select the most advanced tools available today and establishes a framework that simplifies the addition, replacement, or removal of technologies in the future. In essence, MACH architecture offers a definitive solution to breaking free from the cycle of re-platforming.

Reason #1: Speed up your platform development with high modularity

This means breaking down your system into smaller parts, called micro-services, instead of one big chunk. Each part works independently, so you can add or change one without affecting the rest. You can also update a service without redoing the whole system, which makes releasing new features faster.

These modular parts are interchangeable because they work through APIs. So, you can swap one out by just adjusting the API rules. You can achieve all of this by going headless on the frontend. By separating frontend services from the backend, changes to one won't disrupt the other too much.

This approach cuts down on the time it takes to add new features, and users automatically get updates without needing to handle the infrastructure themselves. For example, you can use BCMS headless CMS for managing content.

Reason #2: Cost savings

One major advantage of MACH architecture is cost reduction. Instead of investing a lot of money upfront in traditional software, you can save by using cloud-native solutions and microservices. With the pay-as-you-go model of cloud services, you only pay for what you use, resulting in substantial savings.

Reason #3: Innovation-friendly environment

Thanks to the modular and interchangeable nature of the MACH concept, you can easily integrate new tools and technologies, such as AI, or IoT, into existing systems.

Reason #4: Reduce development risks

When updating or modifying MACH-based solutions, there's minimal risk of disrupting the entire system, introducing errors or bugs, or creating security vulnerabilities. Any issues that arise would be contained within a single component and wouldn't affect the system's overall functionality.

Reason #5: Automatic updates

MACH Architecture simplifies staying current. In cloud-native solutions, upgrades are usually automated, ensuring you're always using the most secure and up-to-date software.

Reason #6: Customer-based experience

Customer wants and wishes are vital, no matter what platforms or techniques you use to interact with your audience. MACH makes it simple to improve customer experience by customizing content, updating customer loyalty programs, or improving sales tactics.

Reason #7: Headless architecture out-of-the-box

In MACH architecture, the headless approach divides the front-end presentation layer from the back-end logic. This split allows for a more adaptable, omnichannel UX, making it simple to distribute content across various platforms.

BCMS the H in MACH architecture

You can use BCMS in MACH architecture as a Frontend as a service (FEaaS) for composable building. Here's how BCMS as a FEaaS works:

Pre-built frontend components: As a FEaaS provider, BCMS offers a collection of pre-built frontend components for content management, including user interfaces for creating, editing, and managing content, as well as components for displaying content on websites or applications.

Integration: Developers can easily integrate these frontend components into their applications using BCMS APIs or SDKs. This allows for seamless incorporation of CMS functionality into custom applications without the need to build the frontend from scratch.

API-driven content management: Behind the scenes, the FEaaS platform provides APIs or backend services for managing content, storing data, and handling user interactions. Developers interact with these APIs to perform content-related tasks programmatically, such as creating new content, updating existing content retrieving content for display, or making programmatic SEO pages.

Scalability and reliability: The BCMS hosts and manages the infrastructure for delivering frontend CMS components, ensuring scalability, reliability, and high availability. This allows applications to handle varying traffic levels and maintain performance under load.

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