SaaS stands for Software as a Service, and it’s a way of providing applications over the Internet. Instead of having to install and maintain software, you can simply access it over the Internet. This frees you from the hassle of managing complex software and hardware. What is Software as a Service? Software as a service is sometimes referred to as Web-based software. It’s also known as on-demand software or hosted software. Regardless of the name, software as a service runs on the servers of the SaaS provider. The provider manages the access to the application including security, availability and performance.
Examples of popular SaaS products:
Adobe Creative Cloud
A brief History of SaaS
SaaS is still relatively new to the software delivery world, but its roots can be traced back to mainframe era computing in the 60’s and 70’s when computer terminals connected to a mainframe where software applications were hosted. It wasn’t until the late 90’s or early 2000’s that the internet became widely available and reliable, which allowed software applications to be delivered over the web. This led to the development of SaaS, or Software as a Service (SaaS), which is the current model of software delivery. Some of the first well-known SaaS apps were simple web tools like email, CRM (Customer Relationship Management) and PMS (Project Management Software) that could be accessed via a web browser. This meant that users no longer needed to install and manage software on their computers.
Salesforce was one of the first SaaS apps to be launched in 1999. It was a web based CRM that enabled businesses to manage customer relationships more effectively and scalable. Other SaaS apps at the time were NetSuite, which was launched in 1998, and WebEx, which was released in 1995. In the early days of SaaS, the internet was slow and limited in bandwidth. As internet infrastructure improved, more businesses adopted SaaS. The popularity of SaaS grew in the early 2000’s, partly due to advances in cloud computing, which allowed software applications to be delivered over the internet from remote servers. This dramatically reduced the costs and complexity of SaaS deployment and management. Here are some of the most significant SaaS developments in the last decade:
1. Increased Adaption :The Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) operating model has become the go-to model for software application delivery. Many organizations have switched from on-premises to cloud-based software solutions due to the scalability, flexibility and cost-effectiveness offered by SaaS.
2. Cloud Infrastructure: Cloud infrastructure has advanced significantly, with the leading cloud providers (Amazon Web Services (AWS)), Microsoft Azure (Azure), and Google Cloud (Google Cloud) investing heavily to scale their cloud offerings.
3. Mobile-First Approach: Now that mobile devices are more important than ever, software-as-a-service (SaaS) providers continue to focus on mobile-first development, creating apps that are mobile-friendly and available everywhere.
4. Artificial Intelligence (AI): Artificial intelligence (AI) is being used by software-as-a-service (SaaS) providers to deliver cutting-edge features like predictive analytics, NLP, and ML.
5. Platform: Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) providers have shifted their focus from building end-to-end applications to building platforms that allow third-party app developers to create and deploy their own apps on top of an SaaS platform. This shift has opened up new possibilities for innovation, personalization and cross-platform integration.
6. Integration: Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) providers are increasingly integrating with third-party applications and services, allowing users to integrate and share data across multiple systems and platforms.
7. Data Security: SaaS providers are focusing on security as a top priority, with encryption, authentication and access controls being some of the top security features.
SaaS has come a long way in the last decade and will continue to play an important role in digital transformation and innovation for years to come.
SaaS Characteristics and Features:
The SaaS model can be likened to a bank, where each customer’s privacy is protected while providing a dependable, secure and efficient service. The SaaS model does the same thing for your business. SaaS enables your business to make better use of its resources. By leveraging SaaS functionality, your business will increase customization, reduce costs and become more connected to the people you care about. The application accomplishes this through four specific SaaS characteristics:
SaaS Multi-Tenant Architecture
Multi-tenancy architecture is a shared infrastructure and code base across all SaaS vendors’ clients and applications that is centrally managed. This architecture enables vendors to innovate faster, freeing up development time that would otherwise be spent on maintaining legacy code.
Easy Customization with SaaS
Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) allows users to quickly and easily adapt applications to meet the needs of their business processes without impacting the shared infrastructure. Each user and company’s unique customizations are supported by a SaaS model that maintains them through regular updates. This allows SaaS providers to make upgrades more frequently, reducing customer risk and adoption costs.
Better Access From Network Devices
With a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) model, your business can access data from anywhere on the network, making it simple to manage permissions, track data usage, and make sure multiple users can view the same data at the same time.
SaaS Harnesses the Consumer Web
If you’ve ever used Amazon.com, My Yahoo! or any of the other popular SaaS applications, then you’re well-versed in the Web interface. The SaaS model allows you to customize with the click of a button, making weeks or months of updating traditional business software seem like an eternity.
5 Ways SaaS Features Improve Your Business If you’re looking to reduce costs and grow your business, SaaS features help sales and business teams better connect with stakeholders and existing and potential clients. Here are the top 5 SaaS features that improve your business:
1.Boost lead management through better identification and monitoring during the sales cycle.
2.Improve sales and marketing collaboration by capturing and sharing prospect and customer insights better.
3.Improves marketing automation by streamlining your digital marketing campaigns.
4.Improves data management.
5.Improves contact management through better storing, organizing and tracking of information about your customers, prospects and sales leads.
SaaS v On-Premises Software:
In the past, companies used to buy and use packaged software, but it had some downsides. On-premises software needs to be regularly updated by an internal IT team, and it needs to be maintained regularly. It can also be hard to integrate multiple systems due to architecture and coding differences. Plus, it can be expensive upfront with software, licensing, and server costs. Sales Cloud can help businesses grow and scale up quickly, but it can also be expensive for small businesses.
Software as a Service (SaaS) is becoming a popular choice for businesses because it’s more efficient and cost-effective than traditional software. Plus, with SaaS, you get all the benefits of traditional software.
1. Low Set Up and Infrastructure costs:
This means that you only pay for the services you need, making it a cost-effective option for all-businesses.
As your business expands, you can adjust your needs based on the number of users, the amount of data, and the functionality you need.
3. Accessible from Anywhere:
All you have to do is connect to the internet and you’ll be able to work from anywhere in the world, whether it’s on a desktop computer, a laptop, a tablet or even a mobile or other connected device.
4. Automatic, frequent updates:
Due to their scale and customer feedback, providers provide timely enhancements, freeing up your IT department to focus on other, more important business priorities.
5. Security at the highest level required by any customer:
Since the service is shared, all users get access to the same level of security, which is designed for the most demanding users.
Salesforce SaaS Products
Increase productivity and reduce expenses with increased automation and advanced analytics based on real-time insights using Sales Cloud.
Empower your sales teams with automation and data that powers connected customer journeys using the Service Cloud to achieve more with less.
With the Marketing Cloud, you can take advantage of every interaction while creating long-term, meaningful connections.
With Commerce Cloud, you can quickly adjust your strategies to increase sales, increase profitability and minimize inventory risk.
The Future of SaaS
The combination of cloud computing and Software as a Service (SaaS) has made it easier for companies to build complete, integrated solutions. As awareness and adoption of SaaS grows, organizations are creating SaaS Integration Platforms (SIPs) to build additional SaaS apps. SaaS is just one of many cloud computing solutions to address business IT challenges. Other options include IaaS (Hardware as a Service), PaaS (Platform as a Service) and SaaS (Everything as a Service). The payment model for these types of services is usually a per-seat or per-month fee based on usage – meaning a business only pays for what it needs, reducing the upfront cost. As companies adopt different types of ‘SaaS’ services, their long-term relationship with service providers will continue to grow, resulting in innovation as customers’ changing needs are better understood and serviced. One day, SaaS may help solve critical business challenges, like predicting which customers are going to churn or what cross-selling strategies work best.
With the ever-increasing demand for large volumes of data, software uptime and backup, cloud-based solutions are quickly becoming the go-to choice for many businesses. If you’re thinking about transitioning to a software-as-a-service (SaaS) platform, take a look at what Salesforce offers for all types of business.