Blog May 29, 2019

How Leading SaaS Companies Leverage AWS

AWS technology was launched just a little over 12 years ago by Amazon Web Services and since then, it’s been utilized to power cloud infrastructures for leading companies worldwide. One of the sectors where AWS has seen the greatest adoption is with “Software as a Service” or “SaaS” companies.

Compared to traditional IT infrastructures, AWS provides many benefits, including:

  • Pay-as-you-go pricing

Instead of being locked into a contract, or dealing with licensing, AWS permits users to pay only for what they use, when they use it, and to never incur pricey cancellation fees.

This is a real benefit for start-ups that need to save money as well as those that are planning on scaling rapidly.

  • Flexibility

The ability to choose the operating system, programming language, web application platform, database, and other services that you may need makes AWS an extremely popular choice for companies that are looking for flexibility, versatility, and variety in software and services.

As these companies scale their businesses, they also have the ability to add or remove software and services…another real advantage.

  • Ability to scale globally

With AWS, companies can easily deploy services worldwide. This results in better customer experience and significant growth for the organization with minimal cost and time invested.

  • Scalability and elasticity

Tools such as Auto Scaling and Elastic Load Balancing, allow SaaS applications to be scaled up or down depending on demand AND without having to worry about managing these changes yourself.

This allows valuable resources and time that would have been spent managing these changes to be utilized where they are most needed, on scaling the business.

  • Increased security & virtually no downtime

AWS security is renowned for offering superior safety for data without incurring the costs of managing security internally.

AWS also boasts almost no downtime for users, which is a significant advantage over traditional IT infrastructures.

Why AWS?

Current research shows that not only does AWS dominate the market in cloud computing, but that it overpowers even the other four biggest competitors combined!

A great way to understand how AWS benefits leading SaaS companies and why many have chosen this option for cloud computing over the competition is to look at some examples of how AWS has helped them to significantly scale their businesses.

How 5 Leading SaaS Companies Scaled Using AWS

  1. Netflix

Netflix has grown from a DVD rental website to the world’s largest streaming network, offering its services in more than 130 countries worldwide. One reason they were able to achieve this success is because of their migration to AWS.

By re-creating their entire technology using AWS, Netflix was able to break up sections of their service into multiple microservices. This restructuring facilitated management of these microservices, which allowed for easy analysis and the elimination of any services that weren’t benefiting broader company growth.

While Netflix now uses a hybrid cloud solution that features a number of infrastructure providers, AWS still plays a key role in the backbone of the world’s favorite streaming service.

  1. Slack

Slack, a leader in business messaging platforms, has grown from infancy in 2014 to an app that’s recognized on Fortune Magazines “Unicorn List” as a start-up firm that’s worth more than $1 billion. The use of Slack by businesses large and small has become near ubiquitous in the workplace. As is the case with many start-ups, Slack needed to operate on a lean model but also required an advanced IT infrastructure while at the same time minimizing costs and complexities.

AWS provided Slack with a range of elastic and simple storage options, private clouds to manage security and an IAM to manage user options and roles.

Because Slack no longer needed to focus on their IT infrastructure, the company was able to concentrate on product development and delivery — and scaled rapidly as a result.

  1. D2L

D2L, a leading education technology provider, wanted to accelerate the growth of their cloud-based platform, Brightspace. The company also wanted to offer their services to more users around the world. One of the major draws of AWS for D2L was the ability to have an IT infrastructure that would never experience downtime, an important attribute in maintaining client satisfaction.

By utilizing AWS technologies, including elasticity, storage, and search, D2L was able to focus resources on developing a superior product, resulting in the transformation of the platform and an improved learning experience for their users.

  1. Pinterest

Pinterest, the world’s largest tool for saving interesting pictures and pages on the internet, was able to scale their business from 17 million users to over 48 million, in large part thanks to AWS.

By utilizing AWS’s simple storage to manage their SaaS platform, Pinterest was able to manage more than 8 billion objects and 400 terabytes of data. As a result of AWS handling much of the “heavy lifting,” Pinterest engineers were able to focus their resources on growing their business.

Because of partnership with AWS, Pinterest has been able to triple its storage and compute in just over three years without having to worry about stability, reliability or security.

  1. Adobe

Adobe, a leading SaaS for digital editing and management tools, found many reasons to utilize AWS to improve the user experience. As a result of these investments in cloud infrastructure, the company was able to introduce three new cloud-based products in that are used worldwide.

In 2008, Adobe started using AWS to offer clients a variety of managed services, followed by the addition of Adobe Creative Cloud in 2012 and finally the migration of Business Catalyst to AWS in 2013.

By moving these products over to AWS, the company was able to minimize in-house resources and costs while significantly improving the overall user experience. AWS’s elasticity feature also provided Adobe with the enhanced flexibility, customization, and security options the company – and its users – require.

Challenges SaaS Companies Face When Implementing AWS Technology

Despite the numerous success stories resulting from SaaS companies using AWS, there are also many challenges that can emerge. Managing these challenges on your own can prove to be time-consuming and costly and ultimately eliminate some of the benefits that you would otherwise receive from utilizing AWS for your SaaS.

Connectria has carefully researched these challenges and has identified specific problems in three key areas: performance monitoring, security and compliance, and cost optimization.

To address these issues we developed a way to help our customers solve these problems and more:  our TRiA Multi-Cloud Management Platform.

TRiA addresses these challenges in the following ways:

  1. Performance Monitoring
  • 24/7 custom performance monitoring
  • Visibility and trending of all resources
  • Identification of unusual changes in activity
  • Technical support and management
  1. Security and Compliance
  • 24/7 advanced security monitoring
  • Dashboard and email updates
  • Tracking of compliance objectives and identification of potential compliance issues
  • Management of compliance with active policy enforcement
  1. Cost Optimization
  • 24/7 usage monitoring
  • A consolidated view of account and regional spend
  • Identification of utilization issues
  • Cost optimization recommendations
  • The ability to enable predictable spending

By leveraging the power of TriA, Connectria helps SaaS companies like yours optimize the AWS infrastructure. Not only is your organization able to get the most out of your investment in AWS, but also is able to free up financial and personnel resources that can support business development and other company goals and initiatives.

If you have questions about implementing AWS for your SaaS company or utilizing our TRiA Multi-Cloud Management Platform, please reach out to us directly. One of our cloud advisors will be happy to discuss your IT requirements and objectives and help plan a strategy that will match your company’s needs.

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