Software as a service, or SaaS, is among the most thriving modern-day technologies.
Don’t take our word for it, have a look at the numbers.
In 2018, the global SaaS workload grew to 206 million and is predicted to reach 380 million by 2021.
Also, between 2019 and 2023, the global SaaS market is expected to be worth $60.36 billion, registering a 9% CAGR within the four-year period.
Clearly, the SaaS market is expanding quickly. The main reason for this is that it offers numerous benefits that attract both big and small entrepreneurs.
No wonder a growing number of small businesses are choosing SaaS solutions over on-premise apps!
Let’s take a look at how SMBs can leverage the SaaS model.
1. Improve Operational Efficiency
The great thing about SaaS apps is that they are accessible from anywhere at any time. They help businesses augment operational efficiencies by seamlessly integrating with workflows. This, in turn, streamlines processes and increases productivity.
SaaS programs equip companies to achieve economies of scale faster, lower infrastructure-related costs, and greatly reduce the need for software licensing. All these factors result in enhanced customer experiences and heightened security.
2. Save Time and Costs
Most SaaS applications are easy to install. All you need are an internet connection and authorized log-in credentials. You do not have to maintain the systems and networks as these responsibilities rest on the shoulders of your IT services provider. This saves you the hours that would otherwise be spent on infrastructure upkeep, while also preventing downtime that goes into upgrading software.
Further, SaaS apps are usually user-friendly, so your workforce will likely adopt them quickly.
The SaaS model can also bring significant savings. For starters, it removes costs related to purchase and installation, as well those for maintenance and upgrades. You can easily download and maintain your SaaS applications. Also, you can choose the pay-as-you-go models, which means that your businesses pays only for the services being used. This spares you the heavy licensing expenses.
SaaS provides small businesses with access to sophisticated, high-performance software that they would otherwise be unable to purchase due to their limited IT budget. The subscription-based payments eliminate the all financial risks associated with using costly software.
3. Enable Scalability, Accessibility, and Integration
With SaaS, small businesses can opt for the subscription-based model, which provides great flexibility. The software is hosted by your service provider, making it easy for you to change your plan without hassle or even an advance notice.
As mentioned, web-based use enables subscribers to access the software securely from any place with an internet connection. So, you need not worry about your business network security nor about security for working remotely.
SaaS solutions typically reside in cloud ecosystems that are scalable and can integrate with other SaaS offerings. As a user, you do not have to spend on other servers and software, which would be necessary in the case of traditional purchasing models. All you need to do is activate the new SaaS program and leave the server capacity planning to your provider.
4. Avail Hassle-Free Upgrades
SaaS providers constantly upgrade their solutions and customers can take complete advantage of that. Your business can avoid costs and effort associate with tracking the release of new versions and upgrading to them. In the traditional model, you would be forced to buy and install the upgrades, as well as to upgrade your infrastructure.
5. Enhance Customer Relationships
Earlier, large enterprises had the advantage as they could afford expensive CRMs, while small businesses lacked the resources to nurture and grow customer relationships. Thanks to SaaS, however, small businesses can now harness CRMs as they have become more affordable.
This helps SMBs maintain customer relationships, while considerably improving lead generation and loyalty. Using third-party plug-ins with CRMs further helps leverage existing resources.
In terms of customer expectations, quality and efficiency have become the basics. Customers now look forward to personalized experiences and expect brands to be aware of their interests. Meeting increasing expectations is almost impossible with traditional software systems, which is why the SaaS model can be immensely helpful.
It can help businesses make the most of their existing data to understand customers better. This is done with the help of advanced analytics that are capable of deciphering your existing data to identify customer behaviors, predict their buying patterns, as well as track their recent interactions with your business.
6. Compete with Industry Leaders
The SaaS model empowers small businesses to compete with the big guns in the industry with the help of cutting-edge technologies and software. This is possible because these models are reasonably priced, and you have to pay only for the services you use.
An increasing number of business are shifting to SaaS for its subscription-based pricing model. This allows them to gain access to a much larger IT infrastructure, enabling better inter-app integration and getting more done with fewer resources. This makes a huge difference in SMB performance and productivity.
It is evident that SaaS has a promising future and a lot to offer to SMBs. When harnessed properly, it can help organizations save time and money, scale and become agile, as well as elevate customer experiences, all while enhancing productivity. It helps businesses get rid of problems related to software maintenance and incompatibility. If you plan to leverage the SaaS model for your business’s growth and development, be sure to consult an experienced IT services provider, who can work out the nitty-gritty depending on your unique needs and circumstances. Knowing about exactly what you’re signing up for will help you make a well-informed decision.
Fabrice Beaux is Co-Founder at InterHyve Sarl, a leading Genève IT services company catering global clients offering everything from simple computer support and maintenance services to complex IT consulting services for law firms and governments, data center migration, and cloud computing services without increasing your IT overheads. @interhyve