What Is SaaS? How Do We Make It Successful?
Take a look and learn more about SaaS cloud computing platforms, how they can be valuably applied to businesses, and their cost models.
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There are a bunch of ways to develop software and a variety of programming languages with their pros and cons, libraries, and other tools and technologies that let us create applications of different types which works flawlessly on mobile devices, desktop computers, and web browsers. Likewise, in development, there are more issues that require attention, like licensing and delivering software.
The key issue here is that customers are always depending upon development companies to choose technology, frameworks, or programming languages to develop an application as per their business requirements, and the customer has to rely on developer’s experience and skills. Having said that, the chosen technology, framework or delivery model may affect both customer and developer since each technology, framework, and delivery model has its pros and cons and requires different strategies to develop an application. In this blog, we will explain the long-term benefits of using SaaS.
What is SaaS?
SaaS is a method of software delivery where data can be accessed from any device with an active internet connection and web browser. SaaS offers a web-based model, in which software vendors host the application and database on the server. This is the most significant software delivery model that overcomes challenges posed by the on-premises software delivery model. At the very first instance, companies do not have to invest extensively in purchasing high-end hardware to host the software. This would add more cost to the company as it leads to outsourcing the troubleshooting and maintaining a software solution, whereas an SaaS vendor takes care of it all.
An on-premise software delivery model offers a perpetual license and with certain charges per year for maintenance and support. SaaS, on other hand, works on a subscription-based model in which a customer will pay a monthly or annual subscription fees, which includes software licenses, support, and maintenance. Using SaaS you will have an opportunity to spread out costs over the period of time.
Why SaaS Is Useful
- Applications are hosted on a web server or cloud and made available to the customer over the Internet.
- An application is managed from a central location.
- The service provider is liable to take care of hardware, software, security, etc.
- As a customer, you don’t have to invest in upgrading server space or associated licenses. You just have to upgrade your subscription offered by your SaaS vendor.
- It has a higher usability rate, since no one wants to invest a big chunk of money in customized software. Support and learning are provided by SaaS vendor at any given time. The SaaS model is based on pay-as-you-go fees.
- The software application is already installed and configured, so once you purchase a subscription you simply have to supply some basic profile related information and you are ready on the fly.
- You can work from anywhere. Since it's hosted on a cloud environment and accessible through the Internet, you can use it on any desktop or mobile devices.
- SaaS is useful when a customer is having a new startup with a limited budget for using required software, when the customer has a demand to use on both desktop and mobile devices, wants to launch eCommerce website without worrying about server configuration and software updates.
How Do We Make It Successful?
Even though the SaaS business model offers immense opportunity for businesses to adopt SaaS model for their business, there isn’t a guaranteed success. One who can deliver a solution to business problems which is easy to learn and integrate with other programs and process will only have an opportunity to succeed.
Beyond the bounds of these standard user expectations, we have taken a time to share 6 secrets to develop a successful SaaS platform.
1. User Experience & Design
In this time where the internet has become a necessity and most of the people are using smartphones across the world, a great mobile user experience and slick design are the keys to success. User Experience and User Interface both go hand in hand when it comes to engaging, converting and retaining your customers.
There are bunch of informative blogs on how to implement a great user experience, however, we recommend to go through our blog about how to implement a great user experience.
- Keep your user interface simple and easy to navigate
- Make it personalized based on subscription plan purchased by customer
2. Product Requirement Prioritization
You must define the crucial functions needed to develop your SaaS product. There are two major points you have to think about at the very first instance.
You have to think about what features should be included to offer value to your customers. To identify that, you have to perform deep analysis and research, because no matter what you think your customer may believe, it always turns out to be very different.
The moment when you sit to list out your SaaS requirement, we recommend to include user stories; short & simple description of a feature from the prospective of the customer who desires new capability of the system.
3. Prepare List of Deliverables
Once the product requirements are clearly outlined, it's time to start off with design work. This is the most crucial part of building a successful SaaS product, because "deliverable" defines a goal for both the designer and development team.
You have to be very open-minded and realistic since there is the possibility that features that you have listed may look good on paper but are not feasible to achieve from a technical point of view. Flexibility to find an alternate solution, in this case, is the key.
4. Find a Great Offshore Developer That Gets You
In order to create wonders, you need to have a skilled workforce. There are several things to keep in mind: you should have a dedicated team working on your SaaS product development. Having dedicated team would give you an opportunity to have complete control over the developers working on your requirement. It means you have an opportunity to change your requirements at any given time, regardless of how far your product development has reached.
5. Do Not Forget About Sales & Marketing
Once you build a fully-tested SaaS Product, you must assume that nobody knows about it. You have to go into the market and let people know about your product. Therefore, you must have your marketing strategy in place to promote your SaaS product.
Published at DZone with permission of Nirmit Vyas. See the original article here.
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