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Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) is a software licensing and delivery model in which a customer rents access to a vendor’s application from a third party. A customer can also buy, own, and use the SaaS application without any upfront costs.

SaaS has emerged as an efficient way for businesses to meet their technology needs while limiting their capital expenditures.

SaaS, or Software as a Service, is a type of cloud computing that allows users to access software applications from remote servers. SaaS is often implemented using either a multi-tenant model for the provider's own software platform, or a hosted model where the provider hosts third-party software on behalf of many customers. 

By allowing companies to outsource their computer infrastructure and maintenance operations to specialists, SaaS can significantly reduce costs and barriers associated with traditional in-house solutions.

Software as a Service is an increasingly popular way to create software. Software as a Service, abbreviated SaaS, is the delivery of software over the internet or other network.

It’s one of many service-oriented architectures that are being used today, but it’s also one of the most effective ways to provide software solutions, especially for online applications.

Many businesses make the mistake of not fully understanding what a software as a service (SaaS) solution is. They assume that it is simply a new way to buy software, but this couldn't be further from the truth. The SaaS model differs from traditional software in nearly every aspect. It changes how you develop, deploy and support your applications—and even who owns them.

Are You New to SaaS?

You are Welcome!

If you are starting to explore the concept of SaaS, this is the place to find out what SaaS can do for you, see how SaaS is different, identify questions about SaaS, and learn more about developing SaaS applications.

What is SaaS?

SaaS software is also known as Web-based, on-demand, or hosted software. SaaS applications, regardless of their name, run on the servers of a SaaS provider.

Software as a Service [SaaS] is a method of delivering software over the Internet. Instead of managing software installations and maintenance, you can access it through the Internet. This allows you to avoid complex software and hardware management.

What is SaaS PaaS IaaS

Every cloud model has its own unique features and functions, so it is important for your company to be able to distinguish between them.

Cloud-based software is available for storage, creating customized apps, and controlling your entire infrastructure remotely.

Whatever your choice, the cloud is the future for business and technology.

Software-as-a-Service-SaaS

#1. SaaS: Software as a Service

Software as a service, also known as cloud application services, is the most popular option for businesses in the market.

SaaS uses the internet to deliver applications to users. Third-party vendors manage these applications.

Most SaaS applications can be accessed directly from your web browser. This means that they don’t require installation or downloading.

SaaS delivery

SaaS is delivered via the internet and eliminates the need for IT staff to download and install software on every computer.

SaaS allows vendors to manage all technical issues such as storage, middleware, servers, and storage. This allows for simplified maintenance and support.

SaaS advantages

SaaS offers many benefits to both employees and companies. It greatly reduces all time and money required for tedious tasks like installing, managing, or upgrading software.

This allows technical staff to focus on the most pressing issues and matters within the company.

SaaS characteristics

Here are some ways you can determine if SaaS is being used.

  • Centrally managed
  • Remote server hosting
  • Accessible via the internet
  • Users are not responsible for software or hardware updates

When is SaaS Best Used?

SaaS could be the best option in many situations, including:

  • Small businesses and startups that require e-commerce to be launched quickly but don’t have the time or resources for software or server issues
  • Projects that are short-term and need accessible, affordable, and quick collaboration
  • Software that isn’t used often, like tax software, can be saved.
  • Mobile and web access are required for specific applications.

SaaS limitations and concerns

  • Interoperability –  If the SaaS app does not follow open standards for integration, integration with existing apps or services can pose a problem. This is where organizations might need to create their integration systems or decrease dependencies with SaaS service providers.
  • Lock-in of vendors – It may be easy for vendors to help you join a service. It isn’t easy to get out. The data might not be transferable technically or economically across SaaS apps from different vendors without the high cost or engineering rework. While not all vendors follow the same APIs, protocols, and tools, specific business tasks may require them.
  • Inadequate integration support – Integrations are needed by many organizations with data, apps, and on-premise services. This may mean that the SaaS vendor might not offer sufficient support, requiring organizations to spend internal resources on designing and managing integrations. Complex integrations may limit the SaaS app’s functionality or those of dependent services.
  • Data security – In order to provide the required software functionality, large volumes of data might need to be transferred to the SaaS app’s backend data centers. Security and privacy may be compromised if sensitive business information is transferred to a public-cloud SaaS service. Compliance Migrating large data loads can be costly.
  • Customization – SaaS apps are limited in their customization options. Because there is no one-size-fits-all solution, SaaS apps may limit users to the functionality, performance, and integrations offered by the vendor. On-premise solutions, which come with multiple software development kits (SDKs), offer many customization options.
  • Controllability – SaaS solutions allow you to hand over control to third-party service providers. These controls do not only apply to the software, such as the appearance, version, and updates. They also cover data security and governance. Customers might need to adjust their governance and data security models to accommodate the SaaS features and functionality.
  • Limitations of feature – SaaS apps are often packaged in a standard form. This can make it difficult to choose features that do not compromise security, cost, performance, or other organizational policies. It may be impossible to change vendors or services in the future due to vendor lock-in, cost, or security concerns.
  • Performance and downtime – Your customers can now rely on vendors to ensure the SaaS service’s security, performance, and reliability. Unplanned and planned maintenance, cyber-attacks, or network issues can impact the SaaS app’s performance, despite the fact that it is protected. Service level agreement (SLA).Protections in place

SaaS examples

These are some of the most popular SaaS examples:

  • Google Workspace (formerly GSuite).
  • Dropbox
  • Salesforce
  • Cisco WebEx
  • SAP Concur
  • GoToMeeting

#2. PaaS: Platform as a Service

Platform as a Service [PaaS] is a cloud platform service that provides components for certain software, but can also be used primarily for applications.

PaaS provides a platform for developers to build on and create custom applications. The enterprise can manage all servers, storage, and networking while developers can manage the applications.

PaaS delivery

PaaS’s delivery model is very similar to SaaS, except that instead of software being delivered over the internet, PaaS offers a platform for software creation.

The platform is provided over the internet, allowing developers to focus on the actual building of the software and not having to worry about software updates or storage.

PaaS allows businesses the ability to create and design applications that are integrated into the PaaS using special software components.

These middleware applications, also known as middleware, can be scaled and made highly available by taking on specific cloud characteristics.

PaaS advantages

PaaS has many benefits, regardless of the size or industry of your business.

  • App development and deployment is simple, efficient, and cost-effective
  • Scalable
  • Highly available
  • App developers can create custom apps without having to maintain the software.
  • There is a significant reduction in the amount of code required
  • Automating business policy
  • Migration to the hybrid model is easy

PaaS characteristics

PaaS is a cloud service that has many unique characteristics, such as:

  • Virtualization technology is used to scale up and down resources as your business grows.
  • Offers a range of services that assist in the development, testing, and deployment of apps
  • Multiple users can access the same development application
  • Integrates web services with databases

When is PaaS appropriate?

PaaS can be beneficial and even essential in many situations. PaaS is a way to streamline workflows for multiple developers working on the same project.

PaaS is a great way to speed up and make it easier for other vendors. PaaS is especially useful if you have to create custom applications.

Cloud services can also help you reduce costs. They can also simplify certain challenges when you’re developing or deploying apps quickly.

Limitations and concerns regarding PaaS

  • Data security __S.32__ Security options are limited because customers might not be able to deploy services that comply with certain hosting policies.
  • Integrations – It is more difficult to connect data stored in an off-premise or onsite cloud, which can impact which apps and services are available with the PaaS offering. Integration with legacy IT systems that are not built for cloud computing may prove difficult, especially if they don’t all have the same capabilities.
  • Lock-in of vendors – Future PaaS solutions may not be compatible with the business and technical requirements. Switching to other PaaS options without the need for migration policies may be impossible if the vendor does not provide them.
  • Modification of legacy systems – PaaS is not a one-click solution for legacy apps or services. Legacy systems may need to be modified and customized in order to use the PaaS service. This customization may result in complex IT systems that could reduce the investment in PaaS.
  • Problems with runtime – PaaS solutions might not be compatible with the language or frameworks you choose, and there may be limitations to certain apps and services. The PaaS service may not support certain framework versions or work optimally. Customers might not be able to create custom dependencies using the platform.
  • Operational limitation – PaaS solutions may not be able to use customized cloud operations and management automation workflows because the platform limits operational capabilities. This is intended to reduce the operational burden for end users but may impact how PaaS solutions can be managed, provisioned, and operated.

Examples of PaaS

These are some examples of popular PaaS:

  • AWS Elastic Beanstalk
  • Windows Azure
  • Heroku
  • Force.com
  • Google App Engine
  • OpenShift

#3. IaaS: Infrastructure as a Service

Infrastructure as a Service [IaaS] is a cloud infrastructure service that uses highly scalable, automated compute resources.

IaaS can be accessed as a self-service to access and monitor computers, storage, network, and other services.

IaaS allows businesses the ability to access resources as needed and instead of purchasing hardware.

IaaS delivery

IaaS provides cloud computing infrastructure, including servers, storage, network, operating system, and network through virtualization technology.

IaaS clients have complete control over their cloud servers, which are usually accessible through an API or a dashboard.

IaaS offers the same technology and capabilities as traditional data centers without the need to maintain or manage it all.

IaaS clients have access to their storage and servers, but they are all managed through a virtual data center in the cloud.

IaaS clients, unlike SaaS and PaaS, are responsible for managing aspects like applications, runtimes, OSes, middleware, data, and more.

Providers of IaaS, however, manage servers, hard drives, and networking. Some providers offer additional services, such as message queuing or databases.

IaaS advantages

IaaS has many benefits, including:

  • The most flexible cloud computing model
  • It is easy to automate the deployment of storage, networking, and servers as well as processing power.
  • You can base hardware purchases on consumption.
  • The infrastructure is under the client’s complete control.
  • You can purchase resources as needed.
  • Highly scalable

IaaS characteristics

IaaS is defined by the following characteristics:

  • As a service, resources are available.
  • Prices vary depending on how much you consume.
  • Services can be scaled up easily.
  • Multiple users can use a single piece of hardware.
  • The infrastructure remains under the control of the organization.
  • Flexible and dynamic

When should I use IaaS?

IaaS can be very advantageous in certain situations, just like PaaS and SaaS.

  • Start-ups and small businesses – You may prefer IaaS because you can save time and money by not having to purchase and create hardware and software.
  • Companies with larger budgets – They may want complete control over their infrastructure and applications, but they only need to buy what they use.
  • Companies experience rapid growth – They like the flexibility of IaaS and can easily change specific hardware or software as their needs change.

IaaS is a great option for anyone who is unsure about the requirements of a new app.

Limitations & concerns of IaaS

The IaaS model has many limitations that are similar to SaaS and PaaS models, such as vendor lock-in, data security, cost overruns, and customization issues. IaaS has some limitations:

  • Security Security threats can still be sourced from any host, even though the customer has full control over the apps, data, middleware, and OS platform. Virtual machines (VMs). Threat from insidersSystem vulnerabilities. Data communication between the host infrastructure (VMs) could be exposed to unauthorised entities.
  • Legacy systems can be operated in the cloud – Customers can still run legacy applications in the cloud, but the infrastructure might not have the right controls to protect them. Minor improvements to legacy apps. They may need to be tested in IaaS systems for security before migrating them to the cloud.
  • Training and internal resources – For the workforce to be able to manage the infrastructure effectively, additional training and resources may be necessary. Data security, backup, and continuity will all be the responsibility of customers. Inadequate control over the infrastructure can make it difficult to monitor and manage the resources without the right training and resources.
  • Multi-tenant security – The vendor must ensure that customers are not able to access any data previously stored in storage assets, as the hardware resources are dynamically distributed across users. Customers must rely on vendors to ensure that VMs within their environment are properly isolated.Multitenant cloud architecture.

IaaS examples

These are some of the most popular IaaS examples:

  • DigitalOcean
  • Linode
  • Rackspace
  • Amazon Web Services
  • Cisco Metacloud
  • Microsoft Azure
  • Google Compute Engine

#4. XaaS: Everything as a Service

XaaS is a term that you will likely see more often in the world. This stands for Everything as a Service.

XaaS is a highly personalized, responsive, and data-driven product and offering that customers can control.

This includes the data they provide through everyday IoT sources such as cell phones, thermostats, and other devices.

Businesses can use the data from the cloud to innovate faster, strengthen customer relationships and maintain sales beyond initial product purchase.

XaaS plays a crucial role in the Autonomous Digital Enterprise.

Difference in SaaS PaaS IaaS

Cloud is a topic of great interest for both small and large businesses as well as global enterprises.

However, it remains a broad concept that spans a wide range of online territories.

It is important to fully understand the benefits and differences of cloud services before you consider moving your business to them, regardless of whether it is for infrastructure or application deployment.

Although as-a-service models are increasing in popularity, there are three types of cloud service that you can compare.

  • Software as a Service [SaaS]
  • Platform as a Service [PaaS]
  • Infrastructure as an Service [IaaS]

We’ll discuss the benefits and differences of each one. We will also help you to understand the differences between SaaS, PaaS and IaaS so you can choose the best one for you.

Common examples of SaaS PaaS IaaS

PLATFORM TYPECOMMON EXAMPLES
SaaSGoogle Workspace, Dropbox and Salesforce, Cisco WebEx, Concur, and GoToMeeting
PaaSAWS Elastic Beanstalk for Windows Azure, Heroku Force.com Google App Engine Apache Stratos OpenShift
IaaSDigitalOcean and Linode, Rackspace. Amazon Web Services (AWS), Cisco Metapod. Microsoft Azure. Google Compute Engine (GCE).

Why You Really Need Software as a Service

SaaS software is also known as Web-based software or on-demand software. SaaS applications are run on the servers of a SaaS provider, regardless of their name.

Access to the application is managed by the provider, which includes security, availability, and performance.

SaaS – The payoff

SaaS customers don’t need to purchase, install, maintain or update any hardware or software. Accessing applications is simple: All you need is an Internet connection.

SaaS characteristics

It is helpful to think of a bank as a SaaS provider. This bank protects each customer’s privacy while offering reliable and secure service on a large scale.

Customers of a bank can all access the same technology and financial systems without fear.

The key features of the SaaS model are met by a “bank.”

Multitenant architecture

Multitenant architecture is where all users and applications use the same infrastructure and code base. This code base is centrally maintained.

SaaS vendors have the ability to innovate faster and save valuable time by sharing the same code base and infrastructure with their clients.

Simple customization

Each user can easily modify applications to suit their business processes, without having to impact the infrastructure. These customisations can be made by each user or company and kept intact through upgrades.

This allows SaaS providers to make upgrades more frequently, at lower costs and with less risk for customers.

Accessibility improvements

Access to data on any networked device is improved. It’s easier to manage privileges and monitor data usage, so everyone can see the same information.

SaaS harnesses the consumer web

Anyone who is familiar with Amazon.com and My Yahoo! The Web interface for typical SaaS applications will be familiar to anyone who has used Amazon.com or My Yahoo!

The SaaS model allows you to customize your business software with a few clicks. This makes the time it takes to update traditional business software seem like a distant memory.

SaaS integration platforms, or SIPs, are being developed by organisations to build additional SaaS apps.

Saugatuck Technology, a consulting firm, calls this the “third wave in software adoption”: When SaaS goes beyond its standalone functionality and becomes a platform for mission critical applications.

Software-as-a-Service-network

Examples of Top SaaS Bloggers and Influencers

You’ve found the best SaaS blogs and influential SaaS bloggers.

We have compiled a list that is categorized and organized to make it easy to find world-class SaaS content and subscription content from the top companies and people in the market.

The list is divided into four categories: venture capitalists and entrepreneurs, communities, companies, and communities.

Each entry contains social media links, tags with the specialties they have, as well as details about why they were included on this list. There is no order in which they appear.

The list was subject to personal validation. It’s subjective to decide if someone should be included or not.

However, it is important to note that the list was compiled from many references, including Medium posts and Quora answers. We’ll be happy to discuss any profile that we have missed.

This list could change over time, as you can see, but I won’t update it. Instead, I’ll write another post next year.

Okay, let’s get to the point:

Entrepreneurs

Hiten Shah

Hiten Shah founded two SaaS businesses, CrazyEgg & KISSmetrics. He also has a weekly SaaS email newsletter and a pretty amazing podcast about entrepreneurship and business with Steli Efti called The Startup Chat podcast.

Steli Efti

Steli, founder and CEO of close.io, is a popular reference for startups and B2B business sales. He also prides himself as a hustler. He blogs frequently at Close.io and has many videos posted on the Close.io YouTube channel. He also hosts The Startup Chat podcast.

Brian Halligan

Brian is the CEO and founder of HubSpot. This super-hot startup was founded in Boston in 2006 and went public in 2014. It’s the leader in the global marketing automation market. Brian is active on Twitter and co-authored a book together with Dharmesh Shah, his HubSpot co-founder.

Eoghan McBabe

Eoghan, originally from Dublin, Ireland and currently living in San Francisco, is the founder and CEO of Intercom. This SaaS startup focuses on solving customer communication problems. He tweets a lot and writes on Intercom’s blog.

Des Traynor

Des, along with Eoghan Mccabe, is the co-founder and chief strategy officer at Intercom. He’s also a regular writer on Intercom’s blog as well as being active on Twitter. Des is also a regular speaker and recently took part in an AMA with members of the Product Hunt group.

Stewart Butterfield

Stewart was the founder of Flickr, which was later purchased by Yahoo! He was promoted to the position of Senior Director of Product Management. Yahoo! After leaving Yahoo!, he started Slack. It is the most popular startup today. Stewart is active on Twitter and writes for Medium.

Peter Reinhardt

Peter is the co-founder and CEO of Segment. This San Francisco startup was founded by Peter after graduating from Y Combinator. It raised $15M to create a customer information hub. Peter maintains his own blog and writes on the Segment blog. He also tweets quite a bit.

Danielle Morrill

Danielle is co-founder and CEO at Mattermark. This platform provides the best database for startups and private companies. Danielle is very active on Twitter and regularly shares her thoughts via Medium.

Alex Turnbull

The Startup Journey blog was the reason Alex became a household name in the SaaS industry. It shared everything about the startup Groove’s journey to $500k per month revenue. It is interesting to note that the blog started with a goal of $100k MRR, but quickly surpassed that and grew to $500k.

Aaron Levie

Aaron is the founder and CEO of Box and a well-known entrepreneur within the SaaS/cloud space. He is very active and takes part in many events, such as TechCrunch Disrupt or SXSW. He tweets a lot, contributes to TechCrunch, and can also be found on Quora.

Neil Patel

CrazyEgg, KISSmetrics, and Hiten Shah were co-founded. A well-known marketer and growth hacker. He writes excellent content about content marketing and inbound on his blog as well as Quicksprout. Neil is also a regular speaker at a variety of SaaS- and startup events.

Parker Conrad

Parker is the founder and CEO of one of the most successful startups. It took his company Zenefits less than eight months to reach $1M ARR. They recently raised $500 million Series C funding at a post-money value of $4.5 billion. You can locate Parker on Twitter.

Marc Benioff

Marc isn’t an active blogger, but it’s impossible not to include him on a list of SaaS top influencers. He’s the CEO at Salesforce.com, which is the largest SaaS company worldwide. Marc is very active on Twitter, and you can find many interviews with him online.

Aaron Ross

Aaron Ross isn’t a CEO or founder of any company. But who cares? He’s the one that created the process that generated Salesforce.com $100M more revenue. Later, he wrote about it in a bestseller called Predictable Income. He blogs and is active on Twitter.

Venture Capitalists

David Skok

This is the most prominent SaaS writer and thinker. David’s website contains many priceless articles, including ” SaaS metrics 2.0 — A guide to measuring and improving what matters“, which is possibly the most important SaaS article ever. You can find him as General Partner at Matrix Partners on Twitter.

Tomasz Tuguz

Tomasz is well-known and respected in the SaaS industry. His data-driven blog posts are widely shared and are considered to be one of the most essential sources of SaaS knowledge on the web. Tomasz, a Redpoint Ventures Venture Capitalist, is very active on Twitter.

Jason M. Lemkin

Adobe acquired EchoSign as the founder and former CEO. Jason is the current Managing Director of Storm Ventures and creator of SaaStr (the largest SaaS community online). He is also the organizer and host of SaaStr Annual, which is the largest SaaS conference anywhere in the world.

Christoph Janz

Christoph, a German SaaS investor, is based in Germany. He has made some great investments like Zendesk. He is the Managing Partner of Point Nine Capital and writes a lot on his blog. The Angel VC. He is also active on Twitter.

Brad Feld

Brad is an investor, entrepreneur, and writer. He is the Foundry Group’s Managing Director and co-founder of Techstars – one of the most prestigious accelerators in the world. He is the author of many books, and some great articles on his blog. He also tweets quite a bit.

Byron Deeter

Byron is a Partner with Bessemer Venture Partners. This venture capital firm is one of the most prominent in the SaaS sector. There are many companies in their portfolio, including Twilio and SendGrid, Box. Linkedin, Pinterest. Skype. Intercom, and others. Both Byron (and BVP) are active on Twitter.

Lincoln Murphy

Lincoln is a SaaS marketing genius. He is an expert on customer retention, growth, and success. He is a prolific writer and tweets frequently.

Mamoon Haimid

Social+Capital Partnership is Mamoon’s founder and general partner. This venture capital firm was founded in the early stages. Mamoon serves as a board member of several great SaaS startups, including Intercom, Box, and Slack. His tweets are often and are definitely worth following.

Scott Maxwell

Since 2000, Scott has been a Venture Capitalist. He is the founder of OpenView Capital Partners in Boston, which focuses on software companies at the expansion stage. He is a partner in OpenView Labs and writes great articles.

Communities

SaaStr

SaaStr was created by Jason Lemkin and is the largest online community of SaaS entrepreneurs. The website contains the core SaaStr content. Quora and Forbes also allow for syndication. SaaStr hosts SaaStr annual conference.

SaaS Club

SaaS Club provides a newsletter that allows SaaS users to share cool SaaS products with related articles each Monday. Vanier Rachel is the Content Marketing and Communication Manager at eFounders. The Startup Studio is based in Paris.

Growth Hackers

Sean Ellis, founder of Quaraloo, and early growth marketer at Dropbox and Evenbrite. Growth Hackers isn’t a SaaS community, but you will find plenty of great content for entrepreneurs, including AMAs and videos, discussions, and even a job listing.

Companies

HubSpot

HubSpot is a tool that allows you to manage your inbound marketing activities. It is the global reference for content and inbound marketing. You can see that HubSpot uses its blogs to source its leads. They create great white papers, guides, and articles.

Intercom

Intercom, a new generation of CRM tools, is used not only for sales but also for customer communication. The blog Inside Intercom has great posts about product development, design, and customer engagement/success.

KISSmetrics

With Kissmetrics, you can optimize your marketing using metrics. Delivering insights and interactions to convert visitors into customers. The blog contains a wealth of information about this topic, including guides, infographics, and webinars.

Close.io

Close.io automates data collection for sales activities, such as calls and emails. Steli Efti is Close.io’s CEO. She writes great articles on sales and has a free course for startups.

Buffer

Buffer allows you to schedule social media posts and share them on Twitter, Facebook, and other social networks. They are well-known for being transparent both within the company as well as to the general public. You can find everything on their blogs, from legal documents to the most current buffer metrics.

Saasmetrics

Saasmetrics helps SaaS companies and subscription businesses keep track of important metrics. This blog contains detailed posts about metrics as well as a Wiki with formulas and descriptions of many SaaS metrics.

Totango

Totango helps you keep track of customer engagement metrics and manage them. They also have an excellent blog and many great resources about customer engagement and customer satisfaction.

Groove

Groove provides simple help desk software that is suitable for small teams. Their amazing blog shares their journey to $500k per month in revenue. They’ve since created two blogs about customer support and one for the product.

Final Thoughts about IaaS vs PaaS vs SaaS

Technology has become an integral part of our lives. It provides us with a wide range of benefits that improve our daily tasks and well-being.

The reason why we use technology is to make our lives easier and more efficient. In this article, we have listed some simple ways you can help SaaS be a part of your life.

To be successful with Software as a Service, you need to keep your eyes open for new opportunities.

This means you also need to look at potential issues that may arise with SaaS and make sure you know how to handle them before they become problems.

There are many ways to help SaaS in your life, but it’s important to make sure you pick the right one. By reading this article, you should be able to find a way that will work for you and help with both your personal and professional needs.

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In this article, we have taken a look at some of the ways that SaaS applications can help you to make your life easier.

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Mukesh Roy

Hey, I am Mukesh Roy and the founder of BloggingSaaS.com. I'm a writer with multiple blogs who wants to help you start a profitable blog, increase blog traffic, and make money online.

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