…And Birthed UX Writing.
The world of tech is a ruthless, never-ending game of “capture the flag” where nobody, not even the age-old art of writing is safe. We all know how the invention of Uber upended the taxi industry, or how Netflix effectively killed Blockbuster (R.I.P). But what about how the advent of the internet, and soon after- Software as a Service (SaaS) disrupted the world of Copywriting?
What Exactly Is SaaS (Software as a Service)?
Allow me to start with an example. So, remember back in the day, if you wanted to download anything- including a freaking internet browser (looking at you, AOL 7 CD’s) you had to purchase the software physically and put it in your computer in the form of a CD, floppy disk, or thumb-drive. Primitive, I know:
What does this have to do with SaaS? SaaS is basically taking the software that once needed a physical disc, and downloading it on your computer, using the internet instead. So Instead of being stored in a physical place, the software is simply stored in the Cloud for you to pull from.
And really, if you’ve spent more than 12 seconds on the internet after the year 2008, I can guarantee you probably know dozens of SaaS products. Microsoft 360, SalesForce, Google Apps, Amazon Web Services, Dropbox, and Slack are just a few that come to mind.
Why have the Software as a Service (SaaS) Model?
Well, for one, the company that creates the software can update it more frequently. Having the ability to fix bugs and send updates automatically over the cloud to the users makes innovation much more rapid. Iterations on interfaces and designs are quick and effectively delivered. All your users are practically guaranteed to have the same version of the product, which streamlines usability across all platforms.
I mean, imagine if Facebook delivered its updates via a CD mailed to your home. We would all have 54 different versions of Facebook. And no, Facebook doesn’t necessarily consider itself a SaaS (more on that another day), but the example still holds.
Another big advantage is that SaaS has managed to overcome the safety barrier over the last few years. In fact, advances in encryption technology have made it so that it’s often safer to store data in a cloud than in-house.
And last, but never least- the bottom line. If you remember in our initial example you could just buy your Microsoft Office CD for $300 (or whatever) and it came equipped with everything from Excel to Powerpoint. However, with Microsoft appropriating their platform on a SaaS model, they are able to charge monthly or yearly for their package as a subscription, rather than a one time, one-and-done purchase that gives you the product for life (or until your computer dies).