SaaS is easier and quicker to buy and the subscription model means less risk.
Less risk is clearly important, but the benefits of “easier to buy” are often under-estimated. A true SaaS solution will activate an evaluation environment in just a few minutes — a fully functioning system, set up just for you, ready for use. Compare this with going to a website, downloading the trial software, deciding which server to install it on, getting the permissions to do so, configuring it for use (assuming everything is compatible), etc. A huge difference when you’re the only IT guy in the company! Don’t forget that every time the on-premise vendor provides an update or bug-fix, you will have to go through a similar process.
Time to evaluate is also under-estimated. Modern SaaS solutions are inherently easier to implement and easier to use (take a look here if you don’t believe this!). Treat the evaluation as the start of an implementation — don’t “play with it.” If it’s not easy to implement, it’s not going to be easy to use! SaaS evaluations by small businesses should take a few hours, not days and weeks. Once complete and assuming your requirements have been met, you should be well into your implementation and roll-out.
Modern software, continuous innovation — now affordable!
With SaaS, new features and fixes are rolled out weekly, perhaps even nightly and are immediately available to all users, at zero incremental cost. SaaS vendors only have one platform and IT environment to worry about and master. All of their energy is focused on continuous improvement driven by customer needs. Conversely, on-premise vendors are continuously challenged to ensure compatibility and performance across hundreds of different hardware/software/network permutations. As a result, innovation suffers.
Smart small businesses move to SaaS and are no longer impeded because they can’t afford the latest software innovations that were previously reserved for much larger organizations.
SaaS price advantages drive TCO reductions
The TCO of SaaS is known to be anywhere from 40% to 70% lower than on-premise products. Small businesses can expect to be at the higher end of this range as more and more SaaS vendors introduce attractive “small business bundles,” as opposed to the standard practice of only discounting for volume. Rapid evaluation and quick implementation make this a viable approach for SaaS vendors. Sharon Mertz, in a recent Gartner report said, “In North America, ease and speed of deployment are primary reasons for SaaS adoption, followed by lower TCO.”. Smart small businesses are taking full advantage of this.
Small businesses are the engine of growth in any economy, especially in challenging economic times. The smart ones will lead. Moving to SaaS will free up valuable cash that will help fuel the growth. SaaS just makes sense for small businesses.