All
Guide to
Successful
 
SaaS
 
Software
 
Development:
Benefits, Challenges, and Best Practices

All

CHAPTER #1 SaaS - what is it?

SaaS is a subscription-based software licensing model. SaaS stands for software as a service and also means “information as a service”. SaaS is most often a cloud-based solution, i.e. it resides on servers somewhere on the Web.

 

The user accesses the service in a browser or through an API. A service provider is solely responsible for providing support. In simplified terms, the SaaS model is when a customer works with a ready solution online. He pays for access and receives a predesigned tool as quickly as possible. 

 

The principle of SaaS is similar to rental. A tenant rents a flat, and leases furniture and appliances, conveniences and the Internet. The landlord gets paid for the operation. But that’s a rather general comparison. Let’s look at how SaaS differs from other models:

 

▬  the model is used remotely. In this case, access can be given to several people at once. That’s why the applications are so convenient for teamwork;

▬  the software is charged regularly. If the user wishes, it is possible to automate the withdrawal once, and online banking will only remind the user of the fee each month. The subscription format is convenient because you can subscribe for six months or a year at a time;

▬  the server owner organises and maintains SaaS software development life cycle. The user is not responsible for anything – they just have to wait if there are problems with the application.

 

Most of the services offer a trial period. The free mode offers limited functionality. It can be used for a short time, usually 14 days. Paying for SaaS software is often much cheaper than buying and installing client-server software. SaaS applications are often more effective than stand-alone multifunctional software.

CHAPTER #2 What you should consider when developing a SaaS application?

Whether it is appropriate to use this format has to be assessed based on the type of business or application. Let’s consider its benefits for customers:
 

 

● The software does not need to be installed on PCs and employees’ desktops. Access can be arranged via the  computer’s browser. Sometimes a client software is installed, but this is most often a matter of convenience for the particular company

● A drastic reduction in the cost of organizing the work of the company. If the business owner chooses client or client-server software, it may incur costs to pay for the software, rent premises, to organize a data center. It is also worth considering the cost of staff salaries and regular computer maintenance

● Reducing the cost of upgrading deployed systems to their complete reduction

● Quick start. It takes 1-2 minutes to sign in the application. Afterwards, you should log in and be fully familiar with the software

● Multiplatform. The payer does not depend on the platform the developer chooses

● Work from any location with internet access

● Synchronising data across multiple devices

● No backup problems, as on physical devices – PC failure, HDD issues, etc

● Collaboration between users

 

There are several advantages for developers:

● Services are in demand. The largest companies in the world use them

● Rapid digitalization and increasing complexity of SaaS application development. Functions are becoming more complex and massive, but easier to use in practice

● The system can be implemented quickly and cheaply. It is easy to penetrate global markets

● There are no difficulties with unlicensed software and its prohibited distribution

● The SaaS client is tied to the provider. The user cannot buy the software once and use it after the relationship is terminated. The developer does not risk losing money – his investment is protected

● SaaS brings economic benefits in the long run. The model will generate more revenue than the user will spend to purchase a software licence. SaaS is more profitable because there is no need to spend money on technical support for the software being installed

● No large support team is needed to fix issues on users’ desktops

● Quick and frequent software updates, fully controlled by the developers

● User data protection

 

The advantage for both parties is increased competition. Users get an improved product with enhanced functionality due to the continued growth of the provider companies. Developers get more customers and investments if the application is properly designed.

 

But the model also has several drawbacks:

● Revenue is stretched over time. The user pays for the app once a month, and the cost of recruiting new users often exceeds the revenue from the first purchase. Hence the importance of constant contact between user and vendor. Developers need to retain an audience. To do this, the software needs to be updated regularly and become more creative

● For users, the service can be complicated by a lack of Internet access, including unstable Internet connections. In this case, the applications are slow to load or stop working

● The main disadvantage is support and server infrastructure costs

CHAPTER #3 How SaaS are developed?

Building SaaS applications are common for B2B and B2C industries. Such programmes have opened up new perspectives for businesses by automating many routine tasks. Services help in sales management.

The development of a program depends on the planned functionality. The general procedure is as follows:
 

 

● Study the target audience and market. Everything starts with an idea. Developers research and select the target audience based on the idea. Define potential clients’ interests, mechanisms of emotional pressure and ways of meeting their needs. Having formulated the baseline, you can create a hypothesis – the first version of the target audience. After a test of the audience, you can conclude, whether it is suitable or not.

● Formulating the aims of the service. This is where you should gather all the information on the target audience, state service goals and main functions. All the implemented functions must solve the needs of consumers.

● Developing a prototype. So that developers can create a final version of the service, a scheme of its representation should be developed. The prototype should be logical and structured.

● Thinking through the architecture. The prototype is brought to life.

● Creating project design. To be marketable, SaaS needs to be original. Navigation should be concise and structured. The application needs to differentiate itself from competitive designs.

● Testing. At this stage, the usability of the platform is tested. It is necessary to understand how easy it is to work with. Also, its power is sufficient for the solution of their tasks. At this stage, they find errors in the service. Before the launch of the site, they need to be eliminated.

● Launch and further promotion. As soon as the tests are completed, the refinements are made, and the application is ready for the market. Here it is crucial to select the right target audience and give a powerful advertising campaign. Further on, the SaaS platform should be updated regularly. This is necessary to maintain competitiveness.

CHAPTER #4 SaaS development team composition

First of all, the team is assembled along two lines – the application development team and the representatives of your company. Both of these components are necessary for the successful implementation of a project because it is the fruitful interaction of the development team with your company that is important for finding the most correct and profitable solutions. So who is part of almost any team?

 

On the part of the developing company:

  ▬  business analyst;

  ▬  marketing expert;

  ▬  project manager;

  ▬  designers;

  ▬  programmers;

  ▬  testers.

 

This is the minimum set of roles that allows you to work on a project in sufficient depth and detail. We will talk about the tasks of each of them in more detail later.

 

On the part of the client company:

  ▬  product owner;

  ▬  technical director;

  ▬  marketing director;

  ▬  digitalization manager.

 

It is important to clarify that the composition of the client’s team may vary depending on the internal structure of the company. But the main condition is that a representative of the company, authorised to make any development decisions, must be present during development. In this way, interaction will be as quick and productive as possible.

CHAPTER #5 How much does it cost to develop SaaS application?

If you do decide to start SaaS software development, you need to know the cost, because without one you can’t make a business plan, plan investments, timeline, potential profit, etc.

However, let me disappoint you: there is no simple, one-size-fits-all answer. In theory, a small application can cost you as much as $10,000 to $15,000. A big project might even exceed a budget of $500,000.  Unfortunately, there is no universal recipe, because development costs depend on a huge number of nuances. What aspects influence the final cost of SaaS software development?

 

● Scope. Choosing the right niche can save you a lot of time, and most importantly, money. On the other hand, if you are determined to compete and can attract investment, it won’t be a problem. Just keep in mind – it affects the price.

 

● Variety of features. It’s simple – the more complex the application, the more work, the bigger the team, and the bigger the salaries and development time. And this means more costs. 

 

● Integration with other systems. All programmers know that integration with other systems is almost always fraught with debriefings, phone calls, writing/reading documentation and problems. Of course, there are exceptions, but you shouldn’t miss this point. 

 

● Technical analysis and decisions. 

 

● Timeline

 

● Additional costs. Don’t be fooled – in SaaS development, this can be far from the last line in the expense column. With every new line of code, and every item that needs to be added after the basis of the application is ready, the costs can increase significantly.

Summary Your Relevant SaaS Development partner

Our company SapientPro has extensive experience in developing SaaS applications for both large commercial and small-scale projects. We can offer a small, versatile solution that does not need to allocate a large budget. Or create a new, unique solution that can be scaled, developed and implemented in the most innovative ideas and any business processes. We can create not only an optimised, high-quality and user-friendly application, but also make it secure.

 

Owing to the experience and cooperation with partners from different spheres of business we know how to scale and integrate our applications both with services and other programs and information systems.

Our team of professionals will carefully listen to your idea, analyse your target audience and requirements, and give you the best approaches, solutions and deadlines. Our philosophy: our customers’ success = our success.

 

We have grown up together with our customers:

https://contentoo.com – started as MVP in 2018, raised $1M of investments in 2021

Looking forward to be involved in building a new product and make it succeed!

SAPIENTPRODEVELOPMENTSaaSECOMMERCEDESIGNBACKENDFRONTENDCUSTOMERSMANAGEMENTBLOCKCHAINWEBDEVELOPMENTSTARTUPSEOMOBILEDEVELOPMENTTEAM BUILDINGELEARNINGTESTINGQA/QCESTIMATIONARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCENEWS MARKETINGDEBUGING
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DEVELOPMENTECOMMERCE REPLATFORMING GUIDE: SWITCH FROM ONE CMS TO ANOTHER

Outdated CMS may be among the reasons why your business hit a plateau.Developing and launching a website is not where the work stops. Besides, you have to maintain it constantly and implement profound changes. As for the latter, sometimes you may need to do something more than a simple redesign, and that may be a switch from one CMS to another. If your e-commerce business is continuously evolving and growing, it brings along more work to do. New technologies are always here to make your life easier. When it comes to CMS, there is also a great variety of opportunities you can use. In this article, we will walk you through the reasons, things to consider, and steps of CMS replatforming.

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DEVELOPMENTGUIDE TO BUILDING SEO FRIENDLY E-COMMERCE WEBSITE IN 2020

Let us be clear, the absence of SEO may result in the absence of website visibility.What people usually do when they need to find some information? Of course, they google it. The same goes for online shopping. When someone wants to buy or just compare prices for a certain product, Internet users simply open their devices to find necessary items online. Although you can now hardly find a person, who doesn’t have a computer or a laptop, people still use mobile devices more often. Thus, 93% of all internet activity starts with a search query. This number is for you if you doubt the importance of search engine optimization (SEO) for your website.

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DEVELOPMENTHOW TO BUILD & IMPLEMENT DYNAMIC PRICING FOR E-COMMERCE

Bear in mind, the whole purpose of dynamic pricing isn’t all about making sales.Price is among the key priorities when the consumers make their final decision whether to buy a product or not. Too expensive or too cheap offers can easily avert the buyers from your store. What if other stores have smaller prices? Or similar products of cheaper brands attract visitors more? The solution for not losing the client base is keeping track and controlling the costs on your website with the help of dynamic price strategies.

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DEVELOPMENTCOSTS OF E-COMMERCE PROJECT REDESIGN

The rise of sales, increased traffic and positive reviews are just a couple of benefits you may get from a website redesign.If you want your e-commerce business to grow and develop (we believe you do), you need to keep track of events in the online retail industry and, of course, implement on-time updates. Sometimes, small changes are not enough, then significant renovations should take place. Those may include changing the offers you provide and product lines, updating the website and finally redesigning. The question of redesign should be taken up seriously, as the first impression is what most people rely on when it comes to the Internet and its tough competition. Be ready to invest enough effort and budget to the renovation that will increase your business’s value. To know how to determine your budget. It’s important to consider at first the features, reasons, and type of changes, necessary for your website in the process of redesign.

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DEVELOPMENTADDING AN ONLINE STORE TO YOUR WEBSITE: DETAILED GUIDE

Adding an online store to your website will cost you less than developing it from the ground up.Selling online is never a bad idea, especially nowadays, when people wish to buy everything they need right from their cozy homes.What if having a ready website a business owner decided to sell something? Good news! There is no need for you to start all over again. There is a solution – adding an online store to the existing website. The opportunities of eCommerce are growing as fast as the customers’ demands.

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DEVELOPMENTHOW MUCH DOES IT COST TO BUILD AN E-COMMERCE WEBSITE IN 2019-2020

The e-commerce development company you choose will certainly affect the money you have to pay.The e-commerce website can definitely enhance the profit you receive from your business. But how much does e-commerce website cost? The figures you will hear in an answer to that question can vary a lot. Even after development, you will have to invest money into maintenance, improvement and adding brand-new features that are constantly appearing on the market. That’s in case you want your e-store to be attractive and profitable, of course. It’s even difficult to tell the average cost of how much should I charge for an e-commerce website. The numbers will vary due to different factors. In this article, we’re going to discuss them all in detail to help you grasp some idea about the money you need to pay for the e-store. First of all, you need to decide what you want your e-commerce to offer the customers. It may be anything from small business e-store up to a large website with a big amount of integrated (useful or just good-looking) features. It is also a good idea not to wait until everything becomes outdated. We strongly recommend to update all the features continuously and save money for more innovations.

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DEVELOPMENTGUIDE TO PROJECT MANAGEMENT AND PLANNING FOR E-COMMERCE

To avoid the negative consequences, start with determining what you intend to achieve.The popularity of e-commerce is growing at a blistering pace. Many companies around the globe regard the internet as a powerhouse with high commercial capacity and opportunities to boost their business and attract more customers. Those companies are completely right – more and more people prefer clicking the mouse over walking for hours when they need to buy something. Online stores nowadays provide their customers with more possibilities for less effort. But how to make people buy on your website, not any other? The answer is in thorough planning and management of e-commerce.

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DEVELOPMENTWEB DEVELOPMENT TEAM STRUCTURE AT SAPIENTPRO

We don’t say there isn’t enough knowledge, because our specialists are always broadening their abilities, delivering first-rate products and making the customers satisfied.Being a client of a Web Development company doesn’t mean you have to know all the ins and outs of the development process. However, what may be interesting for you is the stages and main characters of the project delivery. You cannot address front-end developer directly if you need to add a new payment method. Even this, as you may think, simple task involves a well-thought teamwork. So, here is a brief insight into the mechanism of SapientPro Clockwork.

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DEVELOPMENTHOW IT OUTSOURCING MAKES UKRAINE ATTRACTIVE FOR BUSINESSES AROUND THE WORLD

If a customer wants to find a development company they can work comfortably with, the staff becomes a really important point to encounter for making a choice.Without any doubt, while visiting some websites, buying goods online or even using a digital map to reach your destination you don’t think of the fact that Ukrainian IT specialists might have taken part in the development of these apps. A great number of companies around the world choose to outsource web development to Ukraine and they do have strong reasons for that. So, let’s give a detailed look at the biggest of them:

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DEVELOPMENTMAIN FACTORS THAT AFFECT THE COST OF THE SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT

As software development is a many-stage process, every its element contributes to what you have to pay for an application.Before starting something new, people usually ask: “How much will it cost me to do this?” If you expect to hear the exact sum once you come to the software development company, here is something you need to know. The factors to be considered for the cost estimation are numerous and most of them depend on how you want your website or app to look like.As software development is a many-stage process, every its element contributes to what you have to pay for an application. Let’s have a closer look at three most important factors that affect the client’s budget.

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