Sage CRMIt’s good to hear Sage haven’t been scared away from SaaS and the cloud after Sage Live, their aborted attempt at a web-based accounting app.

They’ve announced that their SalesLogix CRM system will be available as a web-based offering by early in 2010.

They say it’s a full-featured, ‘single-tenant’ cloud edition of Sage SalesLogix.  It’s a positive sign that they’re using “proper” cloud technologies, like Amazon EC2, to deliver the product. Their problems around Sage Live were irresolvable because they’d used an unsuitable middleware product (which they didn’t own) to deliver the application.

One big problem though. Single tenant? One of the biggest benefits of the SaaS model is that the software is multi-tenanted.

A “single tenant” system means there is an installation of the software for each customer. Indeed, Sage say that users can choose when to trigger an upgrade to the vlatest ersion of SalesLogix, rather than have Sage automatically upgrade them (what’s the betting this will be chargeable too?).

As well as not being ideal for the customer, it also creates problems for Sage themselves. This model of delivering software over the internet simply isn’t scalable, nor does it allow them to take advantage of (and reflect in their pricing) the ability to easily support the software knowing that everyone is running the same code.

All in all, it sounds like they’ll make a better go of it than they did with Sage Live. But it’s still a flawed strategy. For proper web-based CRM, see our partners here.

Perhaps by their 3rd attempt at getting into the cloud Sage wll finally grasp the concept in full.

Update: Good to see Philip Carnelley at TechMarketView agrees with me on the multi-ternnancy issue aswell as making some other very valid points. A saner person would argue that it’s me agreeing with him as he published way before me and our post titles are rather similar – but I swear I’ve only just read it!

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