Thursday, April 5, 2012

SaaS Here, SaaS There, SaaS Everywhere

Starting in 2005, my partner Ric and I created a SaaS business (IntelliReal) from the ground up.  We sold the business to Equifax in August of 2011.  

It seems like everywhere I turn, I'm hearing companies say they plan to use SaaS software over enterprise software.  When do you think SaaS is good for business and when is it not good?  When it comes to firing up servers, people might recommend you run on Amazon's Elastic Computing Cloud (EC2).  There are a ton of infrastructure companies out there now.  You can rent a MySQL instance for about $10 a month.  When it comes to implementing an ERP you can choose from SaaS solutions from Oracle, SAP, NetSuite, and more.  If you're building a product, I hope you're creating a SaaS offering.  If you're building a company, I hope you're considering SaaS solutions.  After all - services companies tend to get about 1 times revenue when they sell and SaaS companies getting 10x revenue!

When will there be more Mobile SaaS offerings?  What different SaaS offerings do you find helpful for your business?  Which ones do you pay for and which do you stay within the freemium model?  Do you think freemium works or are companies just giving away their services for free forever?  Personally although I built and sold (a lot of) mobile apps, I like the free apps the best.  I enjoy Facebook, but would I pay for it?  Not likely.  I used Bill4Time to track my hours and create customer invoices.  I like Trello for list management, but again, would I pay?  I like YouTube, but again, would I pay to watch any of those videos?  Email is important, but would I fire up an Outlook server?  No way, Google does an amazing job on the email side of the world...and I do pay for it.  Dropbox is great, but again, I stay under the freemium minimums.  I like Skype and I do pay for minutes when I call internationally and I do pay a monthly fee for unlimited calls in the US.  I really like Evernote, but I don't pay - again freemium.

Tell me about your SaaS experiences, favorites, etc.
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