Traditionally, many small businesses were required to purchase, build, and maintain their applications and hardware despite their exponential costs. Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) and the Cloud gives companies an alternative. Now, business owners can simply plug in and subscribe to cloud services that are made available to them over the Internet by paying a small subscription fee to access the software.
In SaaS, the user does not have to pay for the software. Instead, they rent services offered by the vendor. They use the software for a specific period of time and in return pay for the services they are using.
SaaS today has become increasingly popular among businesses of all types and sizes. Here are some of the key benefits of SaaS model over traditional licensed software approaches.
- Ease of Upgrading – As a client, you never have to upgrade the applications you’ve subscribed. Instead, SaaS vendors do all the upgrading for you. That means both new releases and software enhancements are centrally deployed to the hosted applications. Plus, there are no client applications on end-user desktop to be upgraded. SaaS vendors usually deliver 2-4 major upgrades every year and any minor updates are automatically done for the end user. Users of SaaS-based applications can therefore remain certain that they are using the latest version of the software.
- Ease of Switching Vendors – SaaS-based software model offers more control and freedom to their buyers than traditional software license models. SaaS applications are sold on a subscription basis, typically for a monthly recurring fee. If you are unsatisfied with the software, you can always cancel your subscription and switch to a different software vendor without purchasing the license that you would have to assume in the licensed software model.
- Seamless Integration – SaaS vendors who offer strong multitenant architecture can easily scale their capabilities to meet specific needs of their customers on demand. Similarly, many SaaS providers are also capable of offering ‘customized’ solutions to their clients.
- Lower Total Cost of Ownership – In the licensed software model, many customers complain about the unknown cost of deployment and operating applications. However, with the SaaS model, the total cost to operate the software is often fixed and low. This is because SaaS vendors usually bundle all of the required software, hardware, and support services such as training, implementation, help desk, upgrades, troubleshooting, and business continuity into a single fee.
- High Adoption Rates – SaaS-based applications are instantly available from any computer or any device, from anywhere, anytime. Because most people are Internet savvy these days, SaaS applications tend to have high adoption rates, with low learning curve.
- Rapid Deployment – In the SaaS-based model, you do not order a hardware or a software to install. That means, you can start using the system almost immediately.
- Lower Initial Costs – SaaS apps are subscription based. There are no license fees, which basically means lower initial costs. Plus, SaaS providers usually look after the IT infrastructure, meaning lower IT costs for managing hardware, software, and people to manage them all.
- No Support Fees – Support fee is usually included with the subscription fee.
- Easy Availability – You just need an Internet connection to use SaaS based applications.
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