A company I am working with built a web application that can be useful for many businesses.

My question is what is the best way to deliver such an application?

Option 1: 'Install' it on their website's server by getting their FTP information and giving them the application's files for them to use freely.


Option 2: hosting it on our own websites server and have all businesses that need this service login in order to use it.

I have been torn between the two for a long time and would appreciate any advice from someone how has some experience with this kind of problem.


I am personally biased towards option 2. It is called Software As A Service, and has been the trend for at least 10 years now. I used to work at a company that started doing it in 2000, and is still successful with it today.

The benefits for your company: You control who has access to the software, and can charge appropriately.

The benefits to the client: They don't need to have technical staff on hand to support a running application. They can focus on their business, and not have to focus on running a website.

The disadvantage to your company: You need to have infrastructure and expertise to scale up your application.

The disadvantage to the client: They lose control of the application. They are no longer free to use it when and how they want to use it.

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