The year 2013 will see many small businesses invest in SaaS (software as a service) to enhance business operations. Both established small business units and startups have seen the productivity of large-size companies multiply in the recent years because of big data and SaaS applications. Small businesses are aware that implementation of SaaS can help gather data from various social media channels, display visualization of the data and use this data for email marketing. Let’s take a look at why a small business should use SaaS.
SaaS saves cost – If a small business owner installs in-house software, he will have to incur the cost of purchasing the software along with maintaining the software. With SaaS, a small business can save on these expenses by paying a small subscription fees for using the software on a monthly or yearly basis. Some examples of SaaS providers I use on a daily basis include Google Docs, DropBox, Apptivo’s invoicing and project management tool. When using SaaS applications, all you need is a good web browser and no added hardware.
Web hosting becomes easier and cheaper – These days, you can rent infrastructure from web hosting companies. This is called Infrastructure as a Service. Here you have the option of choosing the amount of RAM, disk space, bandwidth and CPU cores that your e-commerce site requires. When you have your website on the cloud, it is distributed and spread across several servers that gives them maximum uptime and high bandwidth. Since websites are spread across various servers, if one goes down, other servers pick up, ensuring that the website stays up constantly.
Better access to data – Many small businesses are local businesses with physical locations. For e-commerce shops, this is a great way to collect data to better understand where customers are coming from and why they are coming to your website. You can use SaaS programs such as Google Analytics and Google Adwords to help organize and understand your customers better. See how long customers are spending on each page and figure out why they are leaving in the first place.
Visualization of data becomes simple – The data that is collected from various sources have to be analyzed to create effective marketing and sales strategies. Remember that time is a valuable thing for small business; they do not have time or the human resources to dig deep and analyze data all the time. What they need is an insight of all this data at a glance.
SaaS is here to stay. Therefore it is highly recommended that small business owners exploit the power of cloud-based applications to increase their productivity and revenue this year.
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