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Everything You Need To Know About PaaS

If you’re a business owner, PaaS can help you scale your business as it automates various back-end processes and offers the building blocks needed to respond to demand. Learn the various ways PaaS can benefit your business and how you can choose the right PaaS provider.



Platform as a Service (PaaS) gives developers a framework they can use to build custom applications. In other words, PaaS provides a platform to develop, run, and manage applications without worrying about the IT infrastructure behind it.

Platform as a Service (PaaS) is the middle ground between Infrastructure as a Service  (IaaS) and Software as a Service (SaaS). While most of the service is managed, you retain control over applications and data.

PaaS divides responsibility between the cloud provider and the client.

The cloud provider handles networking, servers, storage, virtualization, runtime, operating system (OS), and middleware — software that transfers data between OS and applications on a network — while the client handles applications and data.

What Is PaaS Used For?

Here are some of the most popular use cases for PaaS:

Application Development

 PaaS offers convenient tools such as cloud infrastructure, pre-set workflows, and scalability features for software development. It reduces the coding needed to build cloud applications.

API Development and Management

The PaaS model helps companies run and manage  microservices and application programming interfaces (APIs). You can use it to create new APIs or manage developed end-to-end APIs.

HubSpot API empowers developers to develop custom applications. 

Database Management

PaaS provides a secure, scalable, and on-demand development platform for creating and maintaining databases. It automates several administrative functions to make the database easy for customers.

Internet of Things (IoT) Processes

PaaS plays a vital role in the growth of the Internet of Things (IoT). 

It supports various application environments, programming languages, and tools that facilitate integrations and connectivity for IoT deployments.

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Advantages and Disadvantages of PaaS

PaaS offerings are popular among development teams because they’re cost-effective and help teams collaborate. You can develop new applications without worrying about the hassle of maintaining the equipment.

The main disadvantage is that you can only control what’s built on the PaaS platform. An outage or problem with the hardware or operating system will affect your software, too, and you’ve no control over that.

Other advantages and disadvantages of the PaaS model are as follows:


  • You can scale up and down as needed — no need to buy hardware or pay expenses during downtime.
  • The PaaS provider ensures you can offer your applications on different platforms.
  • You can access the platform from anywhere.
  • Development teams can easily customize and update apps without worrying about back-end software maintenance.
  • The PaaS provider handles updates and maintenance of the platform’s services.


  • You only have control over the app's code and not its infrastructure. 
  • You store the app’s data on the PaaS provider’s cloud database — this raises security and privacy concerns. 
  • The PaaS provider’s terms of service may prevent extensive platform customization. 

What To Look For When Choosing a PaaS Provider

Consider how your company will evolve before choosing a PaaS vendor. Analyze what each platform offers, and select the services that meet your firm's technical requirements. 

That said, here are some factors to consider:

Data Security

Data is at the heart of any application. Dissect how the cloud service provider intends to secure your data and applications. 

The 2020 Ermetic survey of 300 chief information security officers showed that 79% of organizations had experienced at least one cloud data breach in the previous 18 months. Moreover, 43% had reported 10 or more breaches during that time. 

So choose a PaaS provider that goes to great lengths to secure your data. 

Besides that, the ideal PaaS provider should have ethical guidelines and clear confidentiality policies to ensure data privacy.

Programming Languages and Frameworks

PaaS providers support a wide range of programming languages and frameworks. 

Popular programming languages PaaS vendors support include PHP, Java, Perl, Ruby, and Go. Among application frameworks, you can enjoy the support of Node.js, WordPress, Drupal, Rack, Joomla, Spring, Play, and Zend. 

Your ideal PaaS solution provider should support your preferred languages and frameworks. If they don't, you could experience runtime issues.

Performance and Reliability

An ideal PaaS provider should have established processes for dealing with planned and unplanned downtime. Ensure the vendor has fault tolerance to sustain operations in case of a major outage.

Also, choose a provider you can trust to intervene when such events happen. Ensure you can reach them using various channels such as phone, email, live chat, or social media.

Past Performance

Review the PaaS providers’ past performances.

Investigate how long the vendor has been offering PaaS services and whether the provider has a history of legal issues or data breaches.

A relatively short time in the industry or significant data breaches and legal issues can be huge red flags.

Besides that, you can check their sales and customer satisfaction.

For example, Amazon Web Services (AWS) is the leading IaaS and PaaS cloud vendor globally, with an estimated revenue of $61.9 billion in 2021. Numbers like that can say a lot about the track record of a PaaS provider.

Compliance and Regulation

Before choosing a PaaS provider, ensure it adheres to industry standards and regulatory requirements. 

For example, suppose you develop healthcare applications that process protected health information (PHI). Your software application will be subject to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act’s (HIPAA) privacy and security rules.

As a result, HIPAA will require you to get written assurances from the cloud provider that it'll provide HIPAA-compliant security for the PHI.  

PaaS providers who follow such recognized standards are more likely to continuously implement appropriate measures according to the industry's best practices.

Popular PaaS Providers

The PaaS market is competitive, with many service providers offering unique solutions for businesses to build customized applications

Here, we'll discuss five major PaaS providers: 

AWS Elastic Beanstalk

AWS Elastic Beanstalk homepage

Elastic Beanstalk is an AWS PaaS solution that lets you build, deploy, and manage services and applications in Java, Go, Docker, PHP, Node.js, .Net, Python, and Ruby on familiar servers like IIS, Apache, Nginx, and Passenger.

This PaaS platform does the heavy lifting for you by automatically handling capacity provisioning, load balancing, application health monitoring, and auto-scaling so that your application is up and running immediately. 

It offers ample customization opportunities, improves developer productivity, and helps businesses improve their efficiency.

Google App Engine

Google App Engine landing page

Google App Engine enables developers to create and host web applications in Google-managed cloud data centers.

It supports different programming languages such as C#, PHP, Python, Go, Java, and Ruby. You can also use other languages through custom runtimes.

You can run your app using a flexible environment, standard environment, or a combination of both settings. You won't need to install or manage any infrastructure or physical servers.

Some key features of Google App Engine are:

  • Firewall and IAM capabilities
  • Managed SSL/TLS certificates
  • App versioning and partitioning
  • Managed patching and traffic splitting
  • Fully managed and server less offerings

Red Hat OpenShift

Red Hat OpenShift homepage

Red Hat OpenShift is a security-focused, supported Kubernetes platform that simplifies building and deploying open-source applications.

OpenShift offers enterprise-grade Linux operating system, networking, container runtime, registry, monitoring, and authentication and authorization solutions. It also has extensive API support to fit other products in your workflow without any worries. 

Besides that, OpenShift has multiple safeguards built into the development environment, which step in if someone tries to perform unexpected actions like running containers with incorrect permissions.

SAP Cloud

SAP’s Cloud Platform

Part of SAP Business Technology Platform, SAP Cloud is an open cloud platform designed to help development teams build applications easily, providing both breadth and depth of service.

SAP Cloud enables the integration of cloud and  on-premise apps. It offers many supporting services due to SAP’s partner ecosystem, which delivers a great library of over 1,300 apps created on the same platform.

Microsoft Azure

Microsoft Azure homepage

Microsoft Azure is a fully managed PaaS service that helps you build, deploy, and scale web applications, REST APIs, and mobile backends quickly. Azure supports different programming languages and frameworks such as Node.js, .NET, Python, PHP, Java, .NET Core, and Ruby. 

You can also use Azure’s DevOps  features such as custom domain, staging environments, package management, TLS/SSL certifications, and GitHub. 

IaaS vs. PaaS vs. SaaS

 ‘as-a-service’ typically means a second party provides a service so you can focus on what’s crucial to your business, such as customer relationships and product development. 

Apart from PaaS, other as-a-service options are Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) and Software-as-a-Service (SaaS).


Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) means the vendor provides you with the infrastructure via the cloud, and you access it through an API or dashboard. 

You can manage apps, runtime, OS, and middleware, and the provider takes care of networking, hardware, servers, and storage. This solution helps large companies control how they run their business processes while still benefiting from a scalable, cost-effective solution.

Some examples of IaaS platforms include Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud, and IBM Cloud.


Software as a Service (SaaS) covers services where a provider manages an application for you. SaaS companies deliver their products to end-users via a web browser or application portal.   

You can use these tools as a web application (such as Google Docs) or download and install them on your device (such as Adobe Creative Cloud). 

Some examples of SaaS platforms include HubSpot, DocuSign, and Dropbox.

Final Thoughts: What Is PaaS? The Ultimate Guide to Platform as a Service

Most startups and small businesses find PaaS services convenient as they empower them to create apps and access a wide range of tools without buying and maintaining physical servers. PaaS solutions can increase your company's productivity and let you grow more effectively.

Frequently Asked Questions

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  • Automotive CRM software should have features that support:

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    • Marketing automation
    • Analytics and reporting

    Besides that, an automotive CRM must also be secure, easy to use, and scalable — just like HubSpot.

  • Automotive CRMs record customer interactions that automobile companies can use to distinguish between hot and cold leads and create personalized experiences to move customers down the buyer’s journey.