Over the last decade, cloud-based computing has become a more and more ubiquitous presence in our lives. We use cloud-based services for everything from entertainment, to business, to shopping. Especially shopping.
With giants like Amazon, all the way down to mom-and-pop specialty retailers, eCommerce has gained a progressively steady foothold in our lives, and it doesn’t look like that trend is set to change anytime soon. Instead, eCommerce and the cloud have become intertwined. The two act as indispensable partners with a relationship solidified through SaaS.
What is SaaS?
SaaS stands for “Software as a Service.” SaaS is a cloud-based business model that offers software solutions to all different types of industries for a monthly subscription fee. Rather than buying a sales software that needs to be downloaded or installed on all your company’s devices, SaaS allows online retailers to utilize web portals and cloud-based storage to fulfill their operational needs. With SaaS, retailers are essentially leasing use of the sales software rather than buying it outright.
In the context of eCommerce, software as a service provides an online shopping environment complete with a catalog, point of sale functions, payments, and shipping options.
Lower Up-Front Cost
First and foremost, utilizing a SaaS model means a lower up-front cost. For small retailers who are new to the online space, this provides the perfect on-ramp for creating an eCommerce environment. With installed software, you end up paying a significant cost of ownership upfront. With software as a service, you spread that cost out over regular monthly installments. This has potential to lower a business owner’s initial expenditure and can help to mitigate their risk as most SaaS platforms allow you to cancel your subscription at any time.
Increased Mobility and Agility
With embedded software, you are tied to the devices that are outfitted with your installed sales programs. SaaS helps you stay more adaptable. Because the burden of hosting falls on the cloud service provider, all you have to do is log onto the web portal using the devices you currently have at your disposal. SaaS allows you to be more responsive to your business and its needs.
Up-to-Date Business Tools
With traditional software alternatives, you’re often limited by the version of the software that you’ve purchased. The developer may or may not provide periodic updates, but even if they do, the ultimate burden is on you to download them and keep your sales operations up to date.
With a cloud-based solution, you’ll receive automatic updates without having to seek them out. With a subscription-type service, your service provider shoulders the burden of customer satisfaction just as you are responsible for your own customer’s experience.
Because of these advantages, and many others, we’ve seen a mass exodus away from more traditional sales software by eCommerce participants over the last decade. More and more major retailers have moved away from installed software, opting for the convenience and adaptability of a cloud-based sales model.
Powerful eCommerce platforms like BigCommerce have emerged since the turn of the century offering ready-made sales interfaces to burgeoning online retailers with a fraction of the risk, a fraction of the cost, and a lot more value.
With this open SaaS platform, your online retail business can use the software license’s tools to create a highly customized user experience without the worry and hassle of added maintenance.
Alongside a best-of-breed SaaS application like BundleB2B which delivers advanced B2B functionality and allows businesses to easily facilitate B2B operations online, merchants are empowered to grow their business at a faster pace and lower cost than their competition.
With the vast amount of data transferred through the web everyday, more and more everyday tasks will transition to the cloud. SaaS provides the perfect point of entry for online retailers into the world of cloud-based services. SaaS can help take the worry and overhead out of your sales operations, streamlining your eCommerce platform in the process.