Virtualization and Cloud executives share their predictions for 2013. Read them in this VMblog.com series exclusive.
Contributed article by Ferdi Roberts, CEO and founder, SaaS Markets
SaaS App Marketplace Poised for Explosive Growth in 2013
Although 2012 has been heralded as
"the year of SaaS" by acclaimed venture capitalist Marc Andreessen and others,
2013 promises to bring even greater growth to the software-as-a service (SaaS) app
Speaking at GE's Industrial Internet event last
month, Andreessen noted that SaaS is nothing new, but predicted that the tide of companies
switching to cloud-based enterprise applications will grow rapidly in the New
Year. There are several forces behind
the explosive growth in the SaaS app marketplace.
More Non-IT Professionals Are Purchasing New Technology
for Their Companies
Evidence indicates that SaaS apps are gaining greater
momentum as more non-IT professionals have taken over the role of purchasing technology for
their companies, including mobile devices, file-sharing clouds, and SaaS apps. IDC, the premier global provider of market
intelligence, forecasts that non-IT business managers will purchase 80 percent of
new technology directly for their teams.
In an effort to address business challenges and reach their revenue
goals, these managers have quickly recognized how SaaS apps can make their
lives easier, while helping them win new customers.
Complementary Growth of the Mobile Marketplace
Complementing the SaaS surge, IDC recently
reported that sales of smart mobile devices (including smartphones and tablets)
will grow by 20 percent in 2013, generating 20 percent of all IT sales, and
driving a whopping 57 percent of all IT market growth.
small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) setting up their SaaS applications on
mobile devices, such as iPhones, iPads, and Android devices, the use of these
devices has become more prevalent in essential, daily business operations. These companies are demanding better ways to
employ mobile technology to increase business efficiency, and SaaS app
providers are answering the call.
SaaS Shifting Away From Being Simply Extensions of Existing Applications
Globally, there has been a shift observed in the adoption
of SaaS apps from primarily being extensions to existing applications, to being
new deployments or replacements of existing on-premises applications.
Businesses have dramatically
increased their SaaS use over the past three years, according to a global Gartner
research survey. Nearly three quarters
(71 percent) of the 399 organizations surveyed by Gartner have been using SaaS apps
since 2009. Individual businesses are
making greater use of SaaS, Gartner claimed, with adoption patterns shifting
from using SaaS as a way to extend on-premise applications to replacing
applications with cloud alternatives.
The reasons for deploying SaaS vary
worldwide. Asia-Pacific companies are deploying SaaS to access applications for
the first time, while there is a growing trend for businesses in the US and
EMEA to use SaaS to replace legacy applications.
Supply chain management, web
conferencing, and social software suites were the most common services chosen
by companies replacing on-premise systems. CRM and enterprise content
management systems were the most common applications used for new deployments.
The Emergence of Smaller, Specialized SaaS Companies
As emerging and Fortune 500 businesses alike increasingly recognize the
value and utility of SaaS apps, another emerging trend is the growth of
smaller, specialized SaaS app companies.
A lot of new cloud technology has recently been developed, making it
easier and more cost effective for anyone to build a cloud-based application.
This trend suggests that in 2013 a whole new series of specialized SaaS
apps will arrive to serve specific industry verticals, such as banking,
hospitality, healthcare, and more.
With the growth of the SaaS app marketplace, small and
medium-sized business owners have become seemingly overwhelmed by the opportunities
that lie before them. A recent Techaisle
survey found that 69
percent of respondents prefer to purchase their cloud-based applications from a
single trusted vendor, while 40 percent have noted a lack of training when
employing their apps.
At SaaS Markets,
we have answered the call of SMB owners and will continue to do
so in 2013. Leading financial institutions, technology
companies, retailers, business associations and global brands are increasingly turning
to us to create their global app stores, designed to make employing the right
SaaS apps for their business needs seamless and simple.
About the Author
Ferdi Roberts, CEO and
founder, SaaS Markets
Ferdi is a former Senior Executive at Yahoo, Cisco and
Ariba now spearheading the small business market shift to the cloud through his
role at SaaS Markets, a leading provider of App Store technology. Educated in
Imperial College, London, Ferdi has worked across the US and International tech
markets for the past 20 years. Having founded and run a successful strategic
consulting business for the past five years with interests spanning both North
America and mainland Europe, Ferdi now has his sights set on bringing SaaS
companies the benefits of SaaS to a global market.