SaaS Platform

A SaaS platform is a solution used to sell, distribute, and manage cloud-based software and services. A SaaS platform is a type of digital platform.

Much of the technology market has shifted from traditional software models - where the buyer purchases an application and then installs it directly on a device or server - to the SaaS model. SaaS stands for “Software-as-a-Service.” This kind of software is hosted in the cloud and customers access their applications remotely, often through a subscription package. In this environment, the SaaS platform serves as a key piece of technological infrastructure.

A SaaS platform can offer a wide range of features and functionalities, but to be most effective, the solution should make it easy to streamline application onboarding, automate back-end processes such as billing, and instantly provision cloud-based solutions.

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Three Reasons Why You Need a SaaS Platform

A SaaS platform can offer a wide range of features and functionalities, making it easy to streamline application onboarding, automate back-end processes such as billing, and instantly provision cloud-based solutions. Read the three reasons why SaaS platforms are a must to succeed in the digital economy.

1. Remote work is here to stay

SaaS platforms are an important support system because they make it possible for employees to access the tools they need to do their jobs from wherever they are. Also, these platforms give businesses the ability to scale at will without on-site and in-person maintenance.

2. Micro-SaaS and vertical SaaS are on the rise

With vertical SaaS on the rise, industries like health care and remote learning are moving toward SaaS platforms that are designed specifically for them.

3. Artificial intelligence has entered the picture

AI is here and it has infiltrated SaaS platforms in a way that makes businesses think twice about speed, security, automation, personalization, and more. AI systems are reinforcing SaaS platforms to help ease fears about cloud security and business processes.

SaaS platforms should help to streamline application onboarding, automate back-end processes, and instantly provision cloud-based solutions.Read our blog post to learn more about why your business needs a SaaS platform today.

SaaS and SaaS Platform FAQs

What are the top benefits of SaaS?

For businesses and customers alike, there are several advantages to using SaaS, as compared to traditional software models.

One of the leading benefits for businesses is that offering a SaaS product gives them the chance to automate key elements of delivery and maintenance. This is especially true when the company uses a suitable SaaS platform.

For the customers who subscribe to a SaaS app, automatic updates are one of the central reasons to purchase software through the cloud rather than traditional means. Instead of updating the app manually, they can rest assured knowing that their software is always up to date. They’ll enjoy the latest product features and the highest level of security possible.

In addition to these core advantages, there are several other benefits to using SaaS applications. For example, providers can grow their subscription commerce efforts with sustainable recurring revenue while customers will have access to their cloud-based applications across devices and in various locations. By selecting complementary tools through a reliable SaaS platform, they’ll also be able to ensure that integrating different apps isn’t a hurdle.

Take a look at our recent blog post to explore further advantages of Software-as-a-Service.

What are some examples of SaaS?

Prominent SaaS examples include longstanding technology leaders and more recent entrants to the field. Several existing software companies have shifted core products to the cloud and updated their underlying infrastructure to enhance the digital experience for their customers. New companies have had SaaS in their DNA from the beginning.

Some of the leaders in cloud offerings include:

  • Intuit
    The financial software giant is never content to rest on its laurels. This company’s customers now benefit from access to a wide variety of third-party products produced by outside developers and vendors, then resold through Intuit’s open platform.
  • Atlassian
    Collaboration software leader Atlassian has onboarded over 4,000 new apps to its marketplace from an initial offering of 1,000 third-party applications with built-in integration. Their customers have responded well to the extended functionality and constant innovation.
  • Salesforce
    The fact is, you can’t talk about SaaS without mentioning Salesforce. The customer relationship management (CRM) company has been empowering sales and marketing teams for years. Over time, it built up the AppExchange ecosystem, which is projected to be six times bigger than the company itself by 2024.

Prominent SaaS examples range from cloud computing services to marketing automation software and much more. Many leaders in this space actively cultivate marketplaces, promoting partnerships that support both the vendor and the core company.

Check out our blog to find out which top SaaS companies have experienced exceptional growth in recent years.

How can you find the best SaaS platform for your organization’s needs?

If you’ve decided the time is right to search for a SaaS platform that can help your organization move forward, there are a few key considerations to assess before deciding which option is right for you.

First, you’ll have to solidify the initial scope of your ambitions: Do you want to launch with a broad-based platform that appeals to a central function for a wide cross section of industries, like sales, marketing, finance, or human resources? Or is it your goal to establish a foothold with a wide variety of offerings relevant to a specific vertical?

Increasingly, businesses are choosing the latter. There’s a lot of potential for industry-specific software innovation. Today, a vendor doesn’t have to reinvent the wheel - they just have to make sure their SaaS model meets the needs of a specific customer profile, allowing them to provide a new cloud solution to meet a unique need.

Second, there are some key features that you should look for in a SaaS platform, no matter what your ultimate objectives are:

  • Easy application onboarding: Streamlined integrations and approvals will help you benefit from new solutions provided by independent software developers and third-party entities.
  • Automated backend processes: Your SaaS platform should be able to handle the heavy lifting when it comes to administrative functions like billing.
  • The ability to instantly provision cloud solutions: Speedy software delivery is key to providing a seamless digital experience and promoting customer satisfaction.

Take a look at our blog to explore top B2B SaaS sales tips once you’ve selected the best platform.

What is the difference between IaaS, PaaS, and SaaS?

The terminology related to different cloud services can seem complicated and confusing at first. In addition to SaaS, some other prominent cloud technologies include Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) and Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS).

IaaS refers to cloud computing resources related to foundational aspects of a company’s technological infrastructure. By working with an IaaS provider, the customer can move elements like data storage from on-site servers to the cloud.

PaaS solutions are used by developers to create unique and novel applications with cloud-based services.

SaaS offerings are specific applications hosted in the cloud and delivered directly to customers. The SaaS product differs from traditional software in that it is not installed directly on the user’s own server or device.

The SaaS model is closely related to cloud services like IaaS and PaaS, and key benefits are similar for these various offerings. In particular, all three of these cloud services provide the customer with significant flexibility to scale quickly and efficiently because of the limited need for physical infrastructure.

How do you deploy SaaS?

Automating the SaaS deployment process is one of the key benefits of using a robust SaaS platform. Ideally, your platform should be capable of automatically provisioning software as soon as the customer’s transaction is completed. With a streamlined process for onboarding new applications from either independent developers or a third-party SaaS provider, you can ensure smooth integration between the customer’s new app and an existing SaaS product.

However, it may still be important to provide some hands-on support for new customers. By assigning an onboarding agent to help your customer with initial software delivery requests, you can help encourage adoption and pave the way for future self-service and customer satisfaction.

It may also be a wise idea to help support new customers by providing training - not only on how to acquire new SaaS applications, but on how to use them as well. A customer who feels confident in the product and its benefits is more likely to resubscribe and champion the service.

Even if your company is not the actual software vendor, it pays to have a deep knowledge of how the core tools on your platform can be used to achieve the greatest effect.

Download our free eBook for more insights on promoting a positiveSaaS customer experience.

How can you integrate SaaS applications?

The hard work of SaaS application integration is accomplished by developers. Some potential solutions include using application programming interfaces (APIs) to directly connect two separate systems or connecting each application using an add-on app.

By working with a robust SaaS platform that offers a large software catalog, you’ll benefit from a wide variety of pre-integrated applications that you can begin offering to your customers right away. Your platform should also support independent developers by providing them with automated integration testing support.

Learn more about how you can use AppMarket to immediately offer more than 300 different SaaS and IaaS solutions alongside your own core offerings.

If you’re looking for a partner relationship management solution that allows you to launch, scale, and optimize indirect channels faster with commerce capabilities for your reseller and referral partners, find out howAppReseller can support your efforts today.

What are the SaaS business metrics that matter most and why?

There’s no shortage of ways to measure the success of your SaaS offerings. While there are technical aspects that you’ll want to keep an eye on, those attributes are mostly in service of higher-level objectives like customer retention and the ability to drive recurring revenue.

While the SaaS model promoted innovative technological advances that moved software from on-device installation to the cloud, the ability to drive subscription revenue is a key advantage of this development for businesses.

Keep track of the portion of your revenue that’s derived from subscription models and look for new ways to expand this percentage over time. You also want to monitor churn and adoption rates to ensure that you’re able to grow your overall subscriber base.

To learn more about the state ofB2B subscription commerce in the new normal, check out our free eBook.

What are the differences between public, private, and hybrid cloud?

The SaaS model, and other cloud services, rely on the ability to host applications in the cloud. Providers provision access to remote users so they can connect to software over the internet. But, what exactly is the cloud?

There are three main types of clouds.

Public clouds are owned and operated by large providers for the benefit of multiple tenants. Examples of public cloud providers include Google, Amazon, and Microsoft.

Private clouds are used exclusively by one entity or organization. The infrastructure is not shared by multiple tenants. An organization may choose to create its own private cloud or contract the services of an outside vendor.

Hybrid clouds are environments that combine the use of public and private clouds. For instance, while sensitive information subject to certain legal or industry-specific requirements may be secured in a private cloud, other elements of the environment may rely on public clouds

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