At the inception of the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting worldwide lockdown, many doors were opened for the upspring of innovative remote work solutions including SaaS platforms. All one requires to access them is a connection to the internet. They are accessible from anywhere in the world where the internet is functional. The pandemic and emergence of cloud computingcreated opportunities now referred to as “the future of work” which simply means accessing worldwide opportunities remotely via the net.
You must have heard of the terms Cloud – as it relates to the net, and of software also. SaaS which means Software-as-a-Service is software that is located on the cloud. This means that the setting, data, etc. for the software is stored in the net instead of in a physical computer system that can only be accessed on-premise. Let us dive deeper into this subject.
SaaS Platform Defined
If you are seeing the term SaaS for the first time, it might seem like a complex term but don't worry, it's not. Software-as-a-Service is another term for cloud-based or web-based software delivered to users through a third party. This set of Service-oriented software is the latest trend employed by businesses in remote work because a web browser is used in delivering the business applications. This means that the painstaking process of on-premise software installations or adhering to strict contracts is avoided, and the access fee can be paid over time instead of paying a one-time fee. This results in more flexible systems that can fit into any budget — from large organizations to petty stores.
Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) is one of the models used in distributing software. SaaS is one of the types ofcloud computing, alongside Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) and Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS). SaaS was reported to be the default method employed worldwide by technology businesses in 2020.
Features and Benefits of Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) Platforms
According to InfoWorld's definition of SaaS, we can summarize that the target audience for the Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) platform are businesses who use the applications hosted by service providers, to effectively carry out their business activities over the net. Apart from this, it also offers both flexibility and functionality in that no extensive hardware is required for its installation. The SaaS method of delivering software to business customers is currently a trend amongst software vendors, making the purchase of on-premise software gradually become extinct.
A unique feature of SaaS platforms is the inclusion of diverse web-based customer support services in the platform, from the software providers/vendors to the business users/clients. These services include customer relationship management (CRM), processing of payroll/bills, management of emails, sales, finance, database, human resource and content, document editing and management, maintenance etc. These services are accessible under customized subscription plans, which keeps the SaaS platform sustainable.
The ability to customize and configure the settings of the platform to suit user taste is another great feature of SaaS. Most platforms would require you to set up an account with your personalized login details including a username and strong password to ensure security of your data.
A benefit of the SaaS platform that stands out is that it helps the organization making use of it to save cost, especially the cost of procuring hardware computers for the installation of on-premise software, as well as the cost for software licensing and renewal/upgrade. This is because cloud-based software (SaaS) is mostly adaptable for access from any device with operating systems like ios, windows, android, etc.
SaaS can be accessed via the net, under a subscription payment plan like pay as you go, weekly, monthly, or yearly subscription. You are free to subscribe according to your need per time, that is, you have the liberty to upgrade or downgrade at any time.
A current trend in SaaS delivery is the integration of diverse platforms with one another for easy accessibility. Some great examples of SaaS platforms are Salesforce, Amazon,, Slack, Asana and MailChimp. Some prominent SaaS providers include Google, Adobe Systems, Microsoft, etc.
Why You Should Set Your Business Up On a SaaS Platform
As mentioned earlier, the benefits associated with using a SaaS platform for your business are abundant. Building a traditional e-commerce platform for your business would not give you access to the diverse solutions that a third-party SaaS provider delivers. For instance, if you build your e-commerce store, you would still have to source for and recruit individuals to carry out services like customer support and other digital services mentioned earlier. This is not cost-effective when compared to setting up your business under a SaaS platform.
Most SaaS companies are companies that provide e-commerce services, but not all e-commerce companies use SaaS platforms.
The similarity between both types is that they both need to have customers for profitability, but the difference is that the SaaS company gets value by compiling a portfolio of customers who pay them consistently via a model of subscription. On the other hand, a company that uses a normal one-time off traditional e-commerce purchase model would need to continuously acquire new customers, if they are to hit the same target revenue. It’s therefore, better to set up your business using SaaS subscription payment models than a one-off sales model.
Did you know that Shopify is a SaaS business platform? It also has a whopping number of over one million users.
American Red Cross and Netflixare actively utilizing SaaS platforms for smooth operations.
Recent statistics show that there is an estimate of more than 11,000 SaaS companies operating via the net.
Summing It Up
As a business, you have the liberty of either setting up a SaaS business system by detecting and solving a niche problem other businesses may encounter while setting up their business on the net, or you can decide to set up your business online by integrating other SaaS platforms in your business delivery.
Remember that having customers pay you recurrently yields higher profits than one time off purchase of your good(s) or service(s).
If you choose to integrate a SaaS platform in your business, it would be good to analyze its usefulness to your business first, before subscribing. Ask yourself practical questions, like if the platform would favor the delivery of the goods or services you are offering. Make sure to read the user’s agreement and be sure that you have full control of your data. Be certain that your privacy and security is guaranteed, before subscribing to a SaaS platform.
We hope that you found this resource useful and that you understand SaaS better now. Do you prefer designing an original SaaS business model or integrating existing SaaS platforms to your business? Let us know in the comment section, we appreciate your feedback. Thank you for reading.
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