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How To Choose A Reliable SaaS Software
SaaS apps are cloud-based systems that can be accessed anytime, anywhere. There are hundreds of good quality SaaS solutions in the market so selecting the right one for your needs can be a hard task. This article details the key features and top benefits of SaaS software, and the main factors to consider to help you choose the best SaaS solution for your needs.
Get to know each product with free trial
Leading SaaS vendors offer free trial plans that give ample time to users to test drive the app’s features at no cost. The free trial gives you the chance to understand how the software can help to boost your company’s efficiency and profitability.
- Freelancers and small companies can use SaaS systems for their various business activities.
- Medium-sized organizations and large enterprises can utilize SaaS apps to enhance collaboration and business productivity.
Types of SaaS Software
SaaS solutions can be categorized into the following categories:
Simple apps for consumers: These include popular web-based software like Google, Facebook, Hotmail, and Yahoo! Mail.
Single application and integrated suite of solutions for companies: Users can pay for access to a single app that they can use for their businesses. This method is used to offer enterprise class systems to small and medium-sized companies at an entry level pricing.
Suite of apps suitable for a particular type of business: This includes software designed for specific industries such as professional services organizations, discrete manufacturing sub-sectors, libraries, and medical and dental practices. These types of software include office automation suites, accounting packages, and business systems specific to a business, for example, a manufacturing solution configured particularly for your industry.
Desktop as a Service (DaaS): Virtualization technologies have helped to create a new type of services based on the provision of virtual desktops. You don’t have to install software on your local server or computer, instead you can use your desktop PC to act as a thin client viewer or window onto a desktop hosted on a server at the service vendor’s website. This method helps large companies to lower desktop maintenance expenses and make use of better data security and backup.
Key Features of SaaS Software
Reduced total cost of ownership
SaaS apps are cheaper than one-premise software as you don’t have to worry about license fees and support costs, as well as expenses for additional hardware, management tools, network monitoring, and staff members for support and maintenance. Therefore, SaaS pricing packages offer reduced total cost of ownership.
Reduced resource expenses
The annual cost of maintaining software apps can far exceed the price of the initial procurement. In fact, businesses spenda major portion of their IT budget in maintaining and operating existing infrastructure and systems. Cloud-based SaaS apps help to minimize internal resource expenses.
Ease of implementation
IImplementation of on-premise software takes much longer compared to SaaS apps. This reduces deployment risk and speeds up value realization. Plus, SaaS solutions need less coding, are easy to configure, can easily scale to keep up with growing business demand, and offer more flexible integrations.
Access to the latest versions
Once you invest in an on-premise system, the technology starts to age immediately. Plus, it is time-consuming and expensive to upgrade on-premise software. SaaS apps provide you access to the latest innovations and avoid the costly and lengthy upgrade process. You get access to the latest software version and new features and capabilities. This means your subscription continues to appreciate over time, providing greater value.
Free trial plans
Many companies invest in expensive software without trying out the features of the system beforehand. This is risky as the investment can be a big amount. Most SaaS vendors offer free trial plans to help users test drive the features first to ensure the application has business value.
Benefits of SaaS Software
Easy to use
SaaS products are easy to use as they come with samples and best practices inside them. The software interfaces are usually simple and intuitive, which makes it easy to learn and use the system.
Lowered time to benefit
Compared to the conventional model, SaaS apps are readily installed and configured. The user can provision the server in the cloud and use the application in a couple of hours. This minimizes the time needed for installation and configuration and reduces deployment issues.
SaaS apps use a multitenant or shared environment where the software license and hardware costs are lower compared to the conventional model. Lower costs means even small and medium-sized companies can afford to subscribe to the software. Maintenance expenses are also reduced as the SaaS vendor owns the environment and splits it between all the users of the application.
Integration and scalability
Cloud-based SaaS apps are scalable and can smoothly integrate with other SaaS products. Unlike the conventional model, you do not have to invest in another software or server. You only need to enable a new SaaS product, and the SaaS vendor will own and provide the server capacity planning.
SaaS providers constantly upgrade the system and offer the latest version for use. This means the costs are lower compared to the conventional model where you have to pay for the upgrade package as well as for specialized services to upgrade the environment..
Rising salary expenses is leading to an increase in business automation
Salary expenses are increasing for both small and large businesses. This has resulted in companies investing in SaaS software that enable one employee to do the work of many.
Lesser dependence on IT unit
Most SaaS apps can be used without using the services of IT staff members. This means IT units are becoming leaner and focusing more on improving efficiency.
Unbundled offerings are becoming popular
Innovative SaaS vendors are offering unbundled products that allow customers to pick only what they want and charge them accordingly. The demand for solo systems and add-ons is increasing, and SaaS providers need to do adapt to the situation and provide suitable products.
You cannot work offline
Cloud-based SaaS apps need a stable internet connection which means you cannot work offline. This problem can be solved by using the Software plus Service. This service gives the best of both worlds as it combines the advantages of SaaS solutions as well as traditional on-premise systems.
You do not control data security
SaaS apps store your company’s data in their data centers. This means you have to give control of your data to a third party vendor. To ensure data security, select a SaaS vendor with a proven track record and good reputation.
You cannot control the software version you use
SaaS vendors offer the latest version of the software. However, sometimes you are better off using an older software version, but SaaS does not allow this. You may wish to stick with the older version because it is stable and compatible with your existing business apps. Though it is good that SaaS vendors constantly update the software version, sometimes you may wish to stick with the older version for the above reasons.
How to look for alternatives to a SaaS solution
If you are looking for alternatives to SaaS apps you can try the following services:
CaaS is a single-tenancy model compared to SaaS’ multi-tenancy model. The advantages of CaaS are complete cost transparency, integrated single sign-on, complete data ownership, direct integration ability, direct data access, and full security control. SaaS is limited in all these business aspects.
Both SaaS and CaaS offer automatic updates and ease of scaling, however, SaaS uses public cloud delivery while CaaS is mainly a private cloud system.
Rapid Application Development (RAD) Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS)
RAD PaaS offers the following advantages:
- Greater speed – RAD PaaS streamlines custom development which speeds up the pace of all elements of the process from access to development and delivery of the working solution.
- Reduced cost – RAD PaaS reduces expenses in many ways: The team size is smaller as the service automates tasks done by specialists. This improves the efficiency of the complete lifecycle of application delivery. Using cloud infrastructure brings into play economies of scale which helps to save dollars. Plus, custom apps offer a differentiator to businesses giving a distinct value that’s hard to estimate.
- Greater flexibility – RAD PaaS gives companies the ability to deliver application features to meet business needs. Now, you don’t have to worry about misfit packages or struggle to extend existing features which can be expensive to do. Instead, custom apps now grow with the business and can stay evergreen which means they age very little and it is cheap to modify them.
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