Building a Scottish Digital Nation on the Cloud
As described in a previous blog research from Microsoft identified the type of challenge holding up Scotland’s productivity and thus economic growth – Low adoption rates by Scottish SMEs of key technologies like Cloud computing.
Only 36% invested in an improved company web site and only 17 – 19% have invested in e-commerce sites and Cloud services.
28% still don’t even have a web site!”
IaaS vs SaaS
A key consideration to note about Cloud computing is that it’s a broad topic that encompasses different layers and types of service, in particular the distinction between ‘IaaS’ and ‘SaaS’, referring to Infrastructure and Software -As a Service respectively.
As the terms suggest, one is the raw computing service, used mostly by organizations who have in-house software development teams and frequently update their code – Great Scottish examples include Skyscanner and Mallzee.
In contrast SaaS means accessing already complete software, via a utility model where you only pay for what you use and can access it instantly, there’s no hardware installation and software set up needed. As such it’s especially valuable to small businesses who neither have these skills nor can afford a large upfront cost.
This participation can be achieved through a form of non-technical ‘development’, where you create a customized digital business model through a lego brick assembly like process. Through ‘widgets’ and other web-to-web integrations, it’s very easy these days to connect together the services offered from across multiple SaaS providers.
For example if you have created your web site using popular builder tools like WordPress or Weebly, then there are relevant integrations available so that you can insert your Appointedd booking features directly into your web site, without any new coding required. This video walks through how to do so with Beezer.com.
Microsites and Enterprise Solutions
A simple but critical feature to highlight that Appointedd offers is a ‘microsite’. This simply means a web site, one typically auto-generated for one specific purpose; in this case a booking site.
This would be ideal for trades that are very booking-centric, for example a self-employed hair stylist, a plumber or dentist, and critically, are often the type of micro-business that Microsoft reports that have no web site at all.
Appointedd is therefore an example of the type of service that can address these needs, a quick, easy and very affordable way of getting their presence online, and via a functional tool they will immediately find practically useful.
It’s also important to note that the service isn’t limited in value only to small business. Appointedd is also used by large enterprise organizations, across sectors including Retail and Financial Services, and for functions like Call Centres and Sales.
Sales teams can drive inbound sales enquiries with booking links embedded on websites and online advertising, sharing booking links within their emails to encourage engagement, offering prospects and clients the convenience of booking calls and consultations, at a time that suits them, directly into a salesperson’s calendar.
Accelerating Scotland’s Digital Economy
As a Scottish startup themselves, the success of Appointedd drives an accelerating affect for Scotland’s economy. It means another growing local business that in turn is succeeding as a consequence of better digitally enabling other local SMEs.
This success is testimony to the Scottish entrepreneur-enabling ecosystem. Appointedd has been supported through programs such as Scottish Edge and Scottish Enterprise, a journey that has resulted in the business winning Small Business Entrepreneur of the Year 2017.