TechieClues TechieClues
Updated date Apr 03, 2024
We will discuss about the difference between a user and a tenant in SAAS in this article.


If you’re managing a social media team, you need tools like Asana to assign tasks, collaborate on content, and track project projects. This setup shows how multi-tenant SaaS architecture works, with two roles at play: users and tenants. But these terms are sometimes confusing, so knowing the difference will help you develop and use SaaS solutions more effectively. In this post, we’ll explain these roles to help you make better decisions for your next SaaS project. 

Users in SaaS

Take Spotify, for example. Users on this music streaming platform come from all walks of life and have different tastes. Some want good-quality sound and spend their time creating personalized playlists while others are just searching for what’s popular. 

In a SaaS application, users use the software directly depending on their jobs. They log in, move around the app, and use its features based on what they're allowed to do. The app ensures only the right people can access certain features, keeping them safe and organized. For instance, a social media manager might use it to schedule posts and see how people are responding while a designer might use it to work on projects with their team. A customer service rep can also use it to track queries and assist clients. 

Types of Users

There are three types of users: 

  1. Admin: The boss of the app. They can do pretty much anything, like adding new users, changing settings, and keeping an eye on how everything's going.
  2. Editor: They make and change settings in the app. They can create new features tweak existing ones, and collaborate with others.
  3. Viewer: They experience the app, but can't change anything. They might check out reports or dashboards to see what's going on.

Tenants in SaaS

In a SaaS setup, think of tenants as companies renting office space in a busy building. Each company has its area customized with furniture and equipment. Similarly, in SaaS, a tenant is like a customer organization using the software. They subscribe to the SaaS platform to achieve their goals.

Just like companies personalize their office space, tenants in SaaS customize the software to suit their needs. They have their administrative account to manage users, set preferences, and access their data securely. This ensures each organization has its own space within the SaaS platform, keeping their information separate and safe.

The Relationship Between Users and Tenants

Now that we've explained the roles of users and tenants in a SaaS system, let's look closer at how they're connected. Consider a busy apartment building. Each apartment (tenant) has its own residents (users), and just like residents sign a lease to live there, users access the SaaS platform through their tenant's subscription.

Here's how this relationship works:


Tenants, representing organizations, subscribe to the SaaS platform, which allows a set number of users from their organization to access it.

User Association

Users don't directly connect to the SaaS application; they're linked to a specific tenant. When users log in, they use credentials given by their tenant's admin to access only the features and data they need.

Subscription Model

The number of users a tenant can have depends on their subscription plan. Some plans offer a fixed number of user accounts, while others charge per user. This lets tenants adjust their user base according to their needs.

One tenant can have many users, each with different levels of access (admin, editor, viewer), allowing for various roles within the organization. Tenants, usually through administrators, handle user accounts within their subscriptions. They create new accounts, assign roles, and deactivate accounts when needed.

Multi-Tenant vs Single-Tenant Architecture

SaaS applications are built using two methods: 

  • Single-tenant architecture
  • Multi-tenant architecture

Multi-tenant architecture

Multi-tenant architecture involves many organizations sharing the same software on shared servers, but each organization's data and features are kept separate, like living in an apartment building where each tenant has their own space.

Impact on Users

Users within a tenant organization share the same basic features of the software. Their data is kept secure through logical separation and encryption, though some may worry about shared infrastructure.

Impact on Tenants

For tenants, this setup means lower costs. It's easy to add new users, and the provider handles maintenance. Customization is limited, but there are options available.

Single-Tenant Architecture

Single-tenant architecture means each organization has its version of the software on its servers and everything is customized for their needs. 

Impact on Users

Users in a single-tenant setup benefit from having dedicated resources. This can mean faster and more reliable performance compared to sharing resources with others. Plus, with each tenant having their own database, the risk of data breaches is much lower, giving users peace of mind.

Impact on Tenants

The single-tenant architecture gives tenants full control and customization options. They can adjust the software to suit their needs perfectly. However, this customization comes at a higher cost because each tenant has its own dedicated resources. Onboarding new users and maintaining the system also take longer in single-tenant setups.

Choosing Multi-Tenant vs Single-Tenant Architecture

Choosing between multi-tenant and single-tenant architectures depends on what your organization needs. Consider these factors:


Single-tenant setups offer more control over who accesses your data, which can be crucial for highly sensitive information. However, multi-tenant setups also invest in strong security measures to keep data private for each user.


Multi-tenant options generally cost less because resources are shared. If you're on a tight budget, this could be a significant advantage. Single-tenant setups usually come with higher costs because you get dedicated resources.


Multi-tenant setups scale well as the provider handles infrastructure. But with single-tenant setups, you might need more resources as your organization grows, potentially increasing costs.


Single-tenant setups allow extensive customization to fit your unique needs. Multi-tenant setups offer less flexibility but may still provide options for configuration and integrations.


Choosing the right setup depends on understanding your users and tenants. There's no one perfect choice, so consider your needs and what's important for your project. If you're building a SaaS app, you need a good plan and our team can help you navigate these decisions. Reach out to us, and let's talk about how to make your project a success.



I specialize in creating and sharing insightful content encompassing various programming languages and technologies. My expertise extends to Python, PHP, Java, ... For more detailed information, please check out the user profile

Comments (0)

There are no comments. Be the first to comment!!!