8 SaaS trends about to explode
The SaaS space is buzzing with new concepts.
These are 9 of the most exciting SaaS trends.
SaaS has experienced explosive growth in recent years. It is now an essential part of the digital landscape and, as of 2023, the global market value for SaaS solutions will come close to the 200 billion USD watermark. The largest SaaS company by valuation? You guessed it, US-based giant Salesforce. However, competition is fierce, and with it comes new, exciting solutions. These are 8 SaaS trends that will be on everyone’s lips in the next couple of years.
The SaaS trends you should keep an eye on
SaaS stands for Software-as-a-Service. SaaS providers, such as Salesforce, host applications centrally and make them available to end-users on a subscription or freemium basis. They manage data, applications, runtime, middleware, servers, and storage. In return, the software is easily accessible, cost-effective, easy to scale, and maintain. These are 8 leading SaaS trends rocking this steaming landscape.
1. Artificial Intelligence & Machine Learning
From Elon Musk’s latest tweet to Chat GPT’s newest update, AI seems to be always trending. This is a hugely complex topic, whose ultimate goal is to create machines that “think” like humans – that is, do more than understand commands but also interpret context and information like a human would. AI is already used in a range of products, from digital personal assistants and customer service chatbots to self-driving cars. Yet, for all the buzz around AI, we’ve only just scrapped the surface of what it can do.
In the next few years, AI will be increasingly present and integrated into our day-to-day activities. Specifically for SaaS, benefits range from hyper-personalization digital experiences to high-quality customer support, security breach identification, production of social media content or predictive financial reports, to name just a few. Crucially, AI enables easier code review and maintenance for developers.
Machine Learning (ML), AI’s predecessor, is already used in several SaaS products, but few players today match Salesforce’s ML capabilities. The world’s leading and most powerful CRM can detect even the slightest patterns in customer behaviour and provides insightful suggestions to the sales team based on the data gathered. ML and analytics together have the power to optimise Business Intelligence and provide predictive analytics.
Simply put, micro-SaaS are subscription-based applications that target niche marketing. A micro-SaaS product can be an extension or add-on to a larger offer that optimizes the experience for specific industries – the opposite of a “one size fits all” approach. Micro-SaaS businesses focus on developing and delivering highly targeted applications or services to a specific niche market. They are characterized by their smaller teams, simpler infrastructure, and narrower customer base. These are lower-risk and less expensive, so it is natural to expect this sector to boom. Micro-SaaS applications can be developed to serve various industries and niches. Here are a few examples:
- Project management tools for specific industries: Micro-SaaS businesses can create project management software tailored to the needs of a particular industry, such as construction, healthcare, or marketing.
- Niche analytics platforms: Micro-SaaS companies can provide specialized analytics tools designed for specific domains like social media analytics, e-commerce analytics, or financial data analysis.
- HR and employee management solutions: Micro-SaaS businesses can develop HR software that caters to the unique needs of small businesses or specific industries, focusing on features like employee onboarding, payroll management, or performance evaluation.
- Booking and reservation systems: Micro-SaaS applications can offer booking and reservation solutions for specific sectors such as event management, salon, and spa appointments, or restaurant table reservations.
- Customer support tools: Micro-SaaS businesses can create customer support platforms or ticketing systems with features customized for industries, such as healthcare, e-commerce, or software development.
- Niche e-commerce platforms: Micro-SaaS companies can develop specialized e-commerce solutions catering to specific markets, such as handmade crafts, subscription boxes, or digital products.
3. Vertical SaaS
Still on the topic of niches, but on a grander scale, the next trend is vertical SaaS. While horizontal SaaS targets a wider range of customers and provides solutions based on the common needs across most industries (e.g. accounting services), vertical SaaS is geared towards a specific customer segment (e.g. field service management software or agricultural solutions).
Vertical SaaS is on the rise. The market is not as saturated as horizontal SaaS. Also, it is easier to deliver personalised and custom software with vertical SaaS rather than horizontal SaaS.
4. Multi-cloud and hybrid cloud architectures
Flexibility is definitely one of the SaaS key traits, specifically when it comes to architecture. Multi-cloud architecture allows businesses to use SaaS software without being locked into a single provider – needless to say, vendor lock in is out of the SaaS trends.
A hybrid cloud architecture gives businesses the capability to integrate their on-premises technology with SaaS solutions and cloud-based systems. This ensures the benefits of cloud computing, such as scalability and cost-efficiency, while leveraging existing systems for extremely sensitive data.
5. API integrations galore
API (Application Programming Interface) is a set of protocols and tools for developing software that allows systems to communicate and share data with each other. For example, a SaaS solution can make use of an API to integrate with other existing systems, such as ERP or systems.
Since APIs acts as a bridge between two systems, they can serve as a basis to develop other SaaS solutions, simply by creating new applications on top of the platform, adding custom features and with no changes to the underlying software.
Taking advantage of APIs opens up new business opportunities for SaaS providers and is convenient for businesses. Additionally, API technology itself is also going through a phase of transformation, with security becoming more critical, the rising importance of API analytics and open-source options. Any upcoming SaaS trends will be intimately connected to API development and improvement.
6. 5G and Edge Computing
5G means a great deal to developers, mostly because it enables a world of opportunity for real-time and low latency applications. For SaaS providers, 5G means faster and more reliable connections, real-time data analysis and processing, as well as the ability to leverage edge computing.
Edge computing, on the other hand, is a distributed network architecture, that processes and manages data where it is generated, rather than on a centralized resource. Edge computing is especially relevant where IoT devices are involved. By processing the data closer to the source – at the edge – SaaS providers can reduce latency, improve security, and reduce the amount of data that needs to be sent to the cloud for processing, effectively saving time, costs, and bandwidth.
Use cases for 5G and edge computing include self-driving vehicles, virtual and augmented reality, healthcare, or traffic management – basically every application where low-latency, performance, and scalability matter. Edge computing would be impossible without 5G networks, and edge-based SaaS on 5G networks is one of the most promising SaaS trends for the next years.
7. White-label SaaS
White-label software is unlabelled, unbranded software produced by one company that can be bought, branded, and used by other brands. A white-label SaaS provider offers it unlabelled products to other businesses. The resellers then brand it and offer it as their own solution, without the need to develop or maintain the software themselves. The responsibilities of the original provider are the technical aspects, such as hosting, maintenance, and upgrades, while the reseller takes responsibility for customization, sales, marketing, and customer service.
Most white-label SaaS are customisable so they can be made to seem native to the businesses that buys them. This is a great advantage to small and medium size companies, allowing them to compete with larger players that have more resources to develop their own software from scratch.
8. Blockchain SaaS
Today, most applications of blockchain technology revolve around transactions and verifications, such as secure payments, ID checks, and data storage. Blockchain SaaS, or BaaS, may be about to change that.
SaaS, Blockchain-as-a-Service, or BaaS are cloud-based services that enable businesses to create, host, manage, and deploy their own blockchain networks, with a fraction of the investment in hardware or skilled technical support. SaaS solutions benefit from the transparency, decentralization, and security of blockchain – like a decentralized marketplace, for example.
Here are two examples of companies that are using Blockchain-as-a-Service (BaaS) solutions:
- Walmart: Walmart, one of the world’s largest retailers, has implemented blockchain technology through a BaaS solution. They use BaaS to track and trace the journey of certain products in their supply chain, such as fresh produce. By leveraging blockchain technology, Walmart can enhance transparency and traceability, ensuring the authenticity and quality of its products.
- Maersk: Maersk, a global shipping company, has also embraced BaaS for supply chain management. They have partnered with IBM and utilized the IBM Blockchain Platform to create a secure and efficient system for tracking shipping containers. This blockchain-based solution provides real-time visibility into the location and condition of containers, reducing paperwork and improving overall supply chain efficiency.
These examples demonstrate how companies from different industries are utilizing BaaS solutions to enhance transparency, traceability, and efficiency in their operations.
Leverage the emerging SaaS trends with Near Partner
The SaaS space is changing rapidly, and it can be hard for businesses to keep up. At Near Partner we have a vast team with specialists in SaaS technology, with a strong focus on Salesforce products. Our range of services includes:
- Salesforce services;
- Custom SaaS app development.
- Third-party integration services.
- SaaS application & platform consulting.
- SaaS maintenance & support.
We deliver tailored solutions that fit our customers’ needs and business requirements. No matter what stage your project is on, our amazing team can take your product to market. Get in touch, and let us work together to bring your vision to life.