What is a SaaS model in cloud computing?

The SaaS model in cloud computing (Software-as-a-Service) is perhaps the most popular form of cloud adoption and for a good reason. It’s the backbone of today’s digital economy, and nearly every digital service uses some form of SaaS — video and music streaming, digital distributions, project management, etc.

If you’re reading this, then you’re probably wondering whether SaaS fits into your business strategies. To find out, we’ll go over how it works and its specific pros and cons.

What is a SaaS Model in Cloud Computing: How does it Work?

Unlike most other models for cloud computing, SaaS is mainly concerned with delivering software services to customers over the Internet. Businesses host their software through the IT infrastructure of a third-party cloud vendor. In turn, the vendor handles all server-related issues, including maintenance, upgrades and troubleshooting. 

As you might imagine, the way SaaS model in cloud computing work enables businesses to focus on their marketing and support, unhindered by tedious (and repetitive) tasks that don’t necessarily contribute to their bottom line. This bodes well for small businesses that need a quick and cost-effective eCommerce solution and doesn’t want to deal with software and server related issues.

Based on what was mentioned so far about the SaaS model in cloud computing, businesses can expect the following advantages:

  • Perhaps the most obvious benefit of a SaaS implementation is the significantly lower cost for businesses. There’s no need to procure their own software/hardware for deployment and licensing fees are shared by users. This enables an enterprise to use technologies that would otherwise remain inaccessible to them due to high licensing costs.
  • Faster time to software deployment. Once provisioned by the cloud vendor, businesses can get their software service ready for their users in a matter of hours.
  • SaaS vendors host their user’s data in a highly scalable cloud computing environment. That means that businesses have the option to scale up or dial down their SaaS offerings at any time as needed.
  • In a SaaS model, the vendor handles all the upgrades, and the changes are then available to users automatically. That means no more time and money spent on server and software upgrades.

Despite its many advantages, the SaaS model in cloud computing is far from perfect and comes with a few notable cons:

  • Limited control. The cloud vendor makes all the decisions concerning cloud provision. This includes what hosting solution to use, software upgrades and other server features. Businesses have no option to defer or refuse any changes in the SaaS implementation.
  • Date security concerns. You are basically handing over all of your proprietary data to a third -party. Hence it’s essential to choose a SaaS vendor that has an excellent track record in terms of privacy and data security.
  • Lower performance compared to on-premise IT. This is because your software solutions are not running on a local server.

A few of the more popular examples of SaaS include services like Dropbox, Netflix and Spotify. These organisations host their software solutions on a third-party cloud vendor and are then delivered to users via the Internet. In return, users pay a monthly or yearly subscription to maintain access to said services.


So there you have it — all that you need to know about the basics of the SaaS model in cloud computing. As you may have already realised, it’s a convenient option for businesses in need of a quick and affordable eCommerce solution, but far from perfect. Your organisation would do well to consider its limitations and take the necessary precautions.

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