Cloud-based vs. On-Premises Digital Signage Software: What to Choose and Why?

A lot comes into play when establishing suitable digital signage software. Some of the aspects to help you make a sound decision.
Cloud-based vs. On-Premises Digital Signage Software: What to Choose and Why?

Digital signage has significantly changed how businesses communicate with their internal and external audiences. The solutions make it easier to send messages, live stream, and advertise seamlessly, making digital signage software a buzz across B2B and B2C commercial institutions.

For an organization that wishes to invest in digital signage, the first question that comes to mind is whether they should go for an on-premise or cloud-based digital signage system. Digital signage software plays a huge role in facilitating the management of digital signage displays. When you have a suitable solution, you can easily schedule content, organize it into groups, or even create playlists, to mention a few. For this, it is paramount that you select the right solution for smooth and seamless processes.

When choosing the ideal digital signage solution, consider if you are ready to purchase, install, or maintain it yourself or you want someone else to handle these processes for you. This will help you make a quick decision on whether you should go for cloud-based or premise-based digital signage software. If you are in a dilemma, here is a guide on how each works, what to choose, and why.

On-Premise Digital Signage

On-premise digital signage software has been the go-to solution for the longest period. This was before the invention of other signages such as SaaS. Also known as an on-site system, on-premise digital signage software is based on the client's server infrastructure. This means that you have to buy it and invest in its set up. Besides installation costs, you are also liable for the software's maintenance services. This calls for extra employees' training to ensure that they are versed with the necessary skills and knowledge to handle the system.


The bright side, however, is that you have total control over the system. You acquire complete ownership and management over the software and personnel. Nonetheless, it is essential to note that the software comes with recurring costs. The digital signage system requires constant monitoring and regular updates. Most organizations end up hiring specialized vendors for system upkeep and updates, which means more cost.

Cloud-Based Software

Cloud-based digital signage solution is more like the opposite of on-premise. In this case, content management is done via the internet. You will not be liable for the system's management, and neither will you have control over it. Everything, including media content storage to display schedules, is done through a browser. This means that the software is not based on your site.

Considering that the software is not installed on your site, it means that you have little to invest in. The servers operate remotely and can deliver content to your display players efficiently. This gives you peace of mind knowing that the system is in the hands of an expert service provider. Therefore, you can focus on other tasks around your business, leaving software management, control, and maintenance to the experts. Moreover, you do not have to incur an extra cost on training your employees or hire a separate team for the system's upkeep and updates.

What to choose?

A lot comes into play when establishing suitable digital signage software. Some of the aspects to help you make a sound decision include;

The size of your organization

On-premise digital signage software comes at a higher cost and is therefore not meant for small organizations. If you plan to start with a few screens or a small network, you should go for the cloud-based system. The solution provides optimum flexibility, meaning that you can expand and increase the displays in the future without incurring extra costs.


Available IT resources

On-premise solutions demand that you take complete control over the system's management and maintenance. This means that you must know how the system works or hire an in-house technical expertise team for the job. The software is a bit complex, and without the necessary IT resources, you are bound to make costly mistakes.

Cloud-based software, on the other hand, is managed and controlled by the service providers. It is easier to set up and use. You do not have to worry about the availability of IT resources to handle the system. This makes it a perfect choice if you lack extensive IT resources.


While at this, consider if you wish to fully own the software, but keep in mind that the benefit comes at an extra cost. On-premise digital signage solution gives you the right to use the software without incurring on-going expenses for its use. However, you should be ready for extra costs, such as training and software upgrades.

With a cloud-based digital signage solution, you do not acquire ownership over the solution. You will be paying to use it. While this means that you will be incurring on-going costs, it saves you from extra expenses like maintenance and hiring costs.

How do you intend to use it?

The suitable solution will significantly depend on your set goals. Suppose you intend to use it to display advertisement campaigns. A cloud-based solution is the most recommended choice. It is flexible and more reliable when it comes to adapting to specific campaign setting requirements.

Security Considerations: When it comes to security measures, on-premise software may sound like the best choice as it ensures that all data remains within your organization's network. With cloud-based software, your data is stored on servers, and if things go wrong or in the case of internet hackers, it may end up in unauthorized hands. However, you can avoid this by taking the time to look for a reliable provider who can offer additional security measures.

Cloud-based digital signage software is undoubtedly the most recommendable choice. Besides monetary benefits, the solution gives you peace of mind knowing that experts handle the system. It helps you save time and focus on what you do best around your business. The cloud-based solution provides optimum flexibility and can adapt to your specific content display needs. This makes it suitable if you plan on expanding your network in the future. Security is also guaranteed when you have a reputable provider.

Look digital signage both can be used in a cloud-based SaaS mode or deployed on-premises within your server infrastructure. To learn more about differences, conditions and pricing, please, contact our Sales team.