Software as a Service (SaaS) is a web-based platform in which application software is delivered to customers in the form of a subscription to use the software. In SaaS, multiple customers can operate on the same software using their subscriber ID.
We can access SaaS-based Applications from any device with a secure internet connection and a web browser. Applications such as Salesforce, Concur, Zendesk, Slack, Pipedrive, Zoho, FreshSales and more are the best examples of SaaS. Working with SaaS is such a way that we need not provide entire software to the customer; instead, we give them the license to access our software, which acts as a service to them.
However, SaaS is a subset of cloud computing as the SaaS products or applications are built on local terminals and deployed to a cloud-based server. Amazon Web Services (AWS) provides a cost-effective, secure, and globally accessible foundation for developing and delivering SaaS solutions to customers.
When we talk about the cost of a SaaS product and revenue generation, very few products are single-sale. A majority of these products generate revenue in multi-folds. For end-users, SaaS products offer simplified costing, as per their consumption of the service. After an initial down payment, the users only have to pay for per-user or a fixed volume of services consumed.
A use case of SaaS products can enhance existing products to create better applications that broaden the feature set of the product while adding value to existing businesses. The software industry today focuses more on building a SaaS application that works efficiently; because of its versatile nature, the demand for SaaS products is increasing day by day.
Efficient and Effective Technology
While implementing SaaS, there are multiple things to consider, the most important of these being the development architecture, along with all the challenges that determine the direction of the SaaS product. Out of all the technologies in the market today, Laravel is the ideal one for building a SaaS application, as it provides the developer with ready-to-use components to use in different modules such as Subscriptions, Payments, and Admin-Dashboards along with the core functionality of the application.
Laravel’s Impeccable Framework
Laravel offers a distinctive and very reliable framework that simplifies the development flow. It is perfect for building products that serve many users because of the robust performance and extensibility of the framework. Software development and maintenance are recurring activities and also easily manageable processes (provided you have the resources, of course!), but the deployment part of this process- considering the complexities involved in the application, has its own set of challenges. The reason being, building and running an application is influenced by a wide range of hardware/software dependencies, end-users’ devices and intermediate infrastructure. For all these reasons, the application behaves differently in development and production environments.
For an application to run successfully, the server must meet specific requirements like the Operating System, Run-time libraries, particular software stack, and many more. Even if the server meets all these requirements, the deployment process still faces difficulties because the applications built on Windows or Mac would eventually be deployed on a Linux server. For a system administrator or the ‘server guy’ this creates a significant amount of challenges in the process of deployment. To make peace with this challenge, the ideal solution is to package the application with the environment and dependencies and make it independent of the host/server environment and infrastructure. This is where Docker comes into use.
Docker For Managing The Applications Infrastructure
To deploy and run an application smoothly, we need a platform that enables us to separate our application from the server infrastructure. Docker provides us with this ability to run our application in insolation, with the host environment. To work with Docker, we need to have Docker-Images. A Docker image is nothing but an immutable file containing- application code, libraries, dependencies, and other data required to run that application. It’s a package that needs to be deployed as a single unit on the Container.
Each Docker image represents our application, with its virtual environment, at any given point in time. These images work as a template containing instructions on creating a Docker Container for that image.
All About Docker Containers
A Docker container is a run-time environment set up based on the underlying Docker image where users can isolate applications. These containers are compact, portable units where you can quickly and easily start up an application.
So we can say a Container is a running instance of an image. When a container is created, it adds a writable layer above the immutable image which can now be modified. The image-based on which you create your container exists separately and cannot be modified.
When you create a container, it creates a read-write copy of the Docker image. This adds a layer which allows modifications to the content of the Image. As containers are autonomous, they provide secure isolation, ensuring that a container would not interrupt any other running containers and the server that supports them. Because of which we can run multiple containers/apps simultaneously on any given host with complete security. Containers are lightweight because they run directly within the host-machine’s kernel.
Docker provides a systematic platform in the following way:
● Develop your entire application using containers
● The container becomes the unit for distributing and testing your application
● Deploy your application into the production environment as a container
These steps will work the same, whether it’s your production or development environment or Cloud.
In a nutshell, by using Docker, we can deploy and scale applications into the host environment with ease and have the confidence that our code will inevitably run without any hassle. Running Docker on AWS gives us a reliable and cost-effective way to- build, ship, and deploy distributed applications. An SaaS Application built on Laravel, deployed through Docker and hosted on AWS – a value-for-money application simply because the people who did the whole thing know exactly how and what they are doing.