Staphylococcus aureus is an eminent human pathogen that can colonize the human host and cause severe life-threatening illnesses. This bacterium can reside in and infect a wide range of host tissues, ranging from superficial surfaces like the skin to deeper tissues such as in the gastrointestinal tract, heart and bones. Due to its multifaceted lifestyle, S. aureus uses complex regulatory networks to sense diverse signals that enable it to adapt to different environments and modulate virulence. In this minireview, we explore well-characterized environmental and host cues that S. aureus responds to and describe how this pathogen modulates virulence in response to these signals. Lastly, we highlight therapeutic approaches undertaken by several groups to inhibit both signaling and the cognate regulators that sense and transmit these signals downstream.