9 Key Considerations for building the right SaaS product

APR 09

Back in 2007 I remember approaching few customers on a weekend to pitch a simple SaaS product and it was very difficult for me to explain them the concept of Pay as you go or a SaaS based subscription service.

12 years later to this day, there's a big change, customers now understand B2B and subscription services, it's easy to get their attention but the challenges have changed, now it's all about building the right product with a good support system.

The SaaS products with a good pricing structure is now favored by most businesses as this gives them the flexibility to pay only for required features and get value for money.

We at Innoctive Technologies are building SaaS products for logistics space, based on our experience so far, have put up a few set of important considerations, hope these help in defining your company SaaS strategy.

  • 1. Building configurable products - this will help in making sure the right features are available to the right set of customers. Features can be turned on & off, mixed and matched in a modular way, giving customers a delightful experience.
  • 2. One Platform Serves all -a multi tenant product / application should be thought through well in advance, the architecture should be supporting it. This not only saves cost but also the efforts required in maintaining multiple versions of software and infrastructure.
  • 3. Keep it Simple Principle -this principle is our very core, in the end what matters is just the customer experience, so the product has to be damm simple, don't even show features that customers don't need. This is not a one day thing, simplicity is a result of iterations and constant churning and that's what adds to the product experience.
  • 4. Scalable product - as load increases, the technology architecture should be able to support it. The experience should always remain the same i.e. delightful. Having a strong technology team building the product with strong focus on scalable architecture is a must. This way we are prepared for the rainy days ahead of time.
  • 5. Scalable sales - it's good to have a strong product but what about sales ? I think sales is like the infantry in army, they face the customers, they are on line of fire with targets, so building the right sales team, processes and that too scalable with fixed or lowering customer acquisition cost over a period of time is very important. If this is not happening or cannot be done, then may be the product or market needs to be re-evaluated for a fit.
  • 6. Pricing factor -this is important especially in an economy like India where people bargain to the core, customers are not willing to spend on technology, even if they do, they want it almost free. But this does not mean we should under sell, we believe the product pricing should be constantly discussed and updated on a regular basis depending on market. Also a one price fits all model, may not work, there should be a proper pricing strategy in place keeping in mind the affordability for customers.
  • 7. The Pull factor - how much can the product grow by itself - is a big question or in other words what are the blocking factors for the product to not grow by self ? This varies by product but in the end, the goal for any B2B product sales I think should be to sell by itself.
  • 8. Support System - t A good well priced "scalable" and "sale-able" product needs a good support system, constantly listening to customers and being there for them is very important. Sales is just a beginning, the customer care and support is what drives the engagement to next level.
  • 9. The Wow factor - the last and not the least, the "Wow factor". Every feature, every capability, the buttons, the scroll, the speed, the flow, the clicks, the feel, everything can be refined and bettered daily. The experience should be smooth, engaging and refreshing.

These are few strategies, depending on your product and company, points may vary, but as always, we recommend you to keep churning and learning and understand what is best for your business.

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