The software industry has witnessed a complete revolution, thanks to the rapid progress in cloud computing technologies. Purchasing software is now history, as customers today can easily subscribe to a particular SaaS (Software as a Service) and scale it up or down as per their requirement.
SaaS product development services are accelerating the cloud computing market. Gartner predicts that cloud spending in India will total $4.4 billion in 2021, a growth of 31.4% in 2021 from the previous year.
Popularity for SaaS
SaaS business model is preferable because of a few fundamental factors that apply universally. Flexible payment options and scalability are the top two factors, as it helps businesses decide their priorities and also subscribe only to the required services. In the SaaS model, operational expenses reduce as both computing and storage demands are largely taken care of by the SaaS provider.
Also, software gets constantly updated and improvised, as the user behaviour is analysed round the clock, and accordingly, the features are updated for better performance.
Currently, the biggest advantage of the SaaS model has been its ease-in-accessibility factor. Since lockdown several businesses have adopted the SAAS model thus enabling the mobility of accessing applications from any digital device and location, making it mobile-friendly and decentralised.
With SaaS, inter-departmental collaboration has increased as now it is easier to share files, work on projects and stay connected with different teams in the same organization. Also, security-wise, most of the SaaS models are more secure and come with pre-existing disaster recovery and business continuity plans, regardless of any data breach or system failure.
The Growth Paradigm
The need to reduce expenses and stay connected primarily driven by the ongoing pandemic has been a huge reason for the growth in SAAS offerings. Businesses have realised that SAAS models are the best way to be digitally efficient that allow their businesses to survive and thrive. This rising demand has also increased the market demand and competition for better and improved SaaS services.
Presented below are the 5 major SaaS trends to look for in 2021
1. AI and Machine Learning: AI is projected to have a market value of $733.7 billion by 2027. AI makes sense and gives value to the enormous data that any digital solution generates. Hence SaaS will see the adoption of AI in multi-folds in the coming month. AI-based algorithms provide calculated analysis and prediction that helps business optimize their processes, make informed decisions and automates repetitive tasks, saving businesses time and money.
Machine Learning, a subset of Artificial Intelligence, helps in pattern recognition, streamlining business operations and automating responses for better customer experience. ML is also one of the most sought after trends in the SaaS market.
AI solutions provide online reporting that helps businesses stay on track with their KPIs and flag down upcoming fluctuation, helping them decide the future course of action.
2. SaaS Mobile App Trends: India’s mobile usage is projected at 900-million by 2023, with nearly two-thirds of the population estimated to have internet access and a mobile device. With SaaS adoption, we are already accessing the app versions of the software on our phone. The year will see a simplified user experience (UX), ultra-responsive app features and functionality, with factors like task optimization, one-swipe actions, online payment, and intuitive filtering capabilities. In the upcoming months, immersive mobile technologies like augmented and virtual reality will also find prominence in mobile apps. Overall, advanced and user-friendly mobile experiences will be at the forefront of the SaaS adoption criteria.
3. Vertical SaaS: SaaS services can be divided into vertical and horizontal. In the latter, the service is focused on clients across any sector and industry. In the former, as understood, the service will be customised, targeting clients within specific industries and supply chains. For example, companies will come with industry-specific analytics solutions customised separately for industries such as healthcare, retail, manufacturing, transportation, storage, education, etc. In vertical SaaS, the solutions are more adaptable, customer-centric, and focusing on niche features. This gives SaaS providers KPIs to provide better scope for upselling and reselling, lowering customer acquisition cost.
4. Micro-SaaS: Micro-SaaS are majorly the small players who provide limited or complementary solutions to their customers. These are mostly add-on services to existing platforms or services that fill the gap of the one missing feature in an existing SaaS product.
It is called micro SaaS because of its company size or product focus, which usually is both limited and small. It is a SaaS model, mostly a vertical one targeting a niche market, run by one or two members, often with limited services.
5. PaaS: With the coming times, the SaaS industry will evolve and increase in volume and portfolio, which is a primary growth factor for customer retention on top of customer acquisition. A SaaS conversion into PaaS (Platform as a Service) means that the software providers will be adding other custom apps as add-ons to their original offerings.
It gives an edge to a SaaS business model, as it brings greater agility, scalability and security to their overall offerings. Enhanced features, functionality, and the ability to customize will make the solutions more agile, giving businesses more time and resources to focus on core commercial activities. PaaS offerings are, by their very nature, robust, flexible, and accessible, which means you will be able to scale your business easily by using a platform as a service
The SaaS industry is here to stay and grow further revving on all engines. SaaS is not only more user-friendly and scalable, but it also ensures data availability even in case of disasters. Hence it is a complete go-to-option for businesses and individuals. As data continues to be the driving force behind current business strategies, SaaS model is only going to be an increasingly convenient and affordable option across industries.
Authored by Vikas Bhonsle, CEO, Crayon Software Experts India