Starting a new SaaS business is an exciting yet nerve-wracking business. It can be hard to predict how well your company will do, even if this is not your first startup.
Especially in today’s SaaS market, with a seemingly ever-increasing availability of options in every corner, it is challenging to make your product and business stand out as the winner. But ironing out a solid, mistake-proof sales strategy can decrease your uncertainty and increase your success.
You can take many approaches when developing a solid sales strategy, but outlined below are the common features that the most successful SaaS companies share.
Refine Your SaaS Product
The most important step in forming a successful sales strategy for your SaaS startup is to have a product that works well and that users need. It is tough to market and sell a product that a market giant is already pushing.
Likewise, it is next to impossible to push a product that users don’t need. Therefore, it is vital to create a SaaS product that solves a pain point for the audience and then refine it to make it user-friendly and indispensable.
Define Your Target Audience
Knowing who you are selling to is the first step to making a sale. Many companies make one mistake in thinking that any sale is a good sale. But selling to users who are not ideal customers is ultimately bad for business.
Not only will they waste precious time tying up personnel resources with troubleshooting, but they could also damage your reputation. The people you want to reach will say your product isn’t working. But what’s happening is that you created a platform that doesn’t suit their needs.
It is always best to know exactly who your ideal customer is and spend time, energy, and money seeking them out so that each sale is mutually beneficial. Persona and buyer’s journey research are excellent ways you can investigate the kind of users your software will benefit.
Get Your Pricing Right
Offering a discounted up-front annual pricing is a great way to get cash flow up front, but we recommend not offering other discount options. For one, it makes it very difficult to know what your predictable MRR will be if every customer is paying a different price and if that pricing differs every year.
Secondly, discounts make upselling more complex, and they devalue your product. It is best to determine a pricing scale that displays the value of what you have to offer without overpricing.
It is best to be in a place where some potential buyers think you’re too expensive and some think you’re too cheap. Then, the majority will believe the price is high, but the product is worth it.
Determine Marketing Mediums
You want to make sure that you only spend marketing dollars where your customers spend their time. Therefore, once you’ve determined your target audience, it is best to decide which platforms and mediums your content marketing team should focus on.
Setting a company-wide strategy will help successfully target customers, push them through the sales funnel, and close sales cycles quickly. The best marketing tactic that has proven to increase sales is utilizing email marketing campaigns. This way, you are marketing directly to the inbox of likely buyers.
Other successful marketing strategies include social media, pay-per-click ads, inbound marketing through SEO, and word of mouth through reviews and recommendations. Your teams must determine which mediums work best for your product and audience and focus there.
Shorten Your Free Trial
Many businesses offer trials that are 30 days, and sometimes they even provide freemiums that span several months. This has not proven to be a successful strategy. The sweet spot is to keep free trials around 14 days.
Having a shorter trial period still allows users to get the full effect of what you offer without allowing them so much time that they forget about you. The goal is to close the sale as quickly as possible by enabling customers to see your value, not letting users get your value for free for an extended period.
Establish a Relationship
You should be contacting trial users immediately. Whether through the most accessible option of automated emails, the better option of personal emails, or the best option of a personalized phone call. Your users should know that there is a person on the other side of the screen.
For one, it is so much easier to cancel or ignore a machine, and for two, establishing a personal connection early on ensures that customers know they will receive help when a need arises. Forming a connection is the best way to create a loyal customer.
Showcase Your Potential
Now that SaaS is an established market, it is understood chiefly across the board that free trials include every feature and perk you have to offer to give potential members the full scope of what you can do for them.
But, this doesn’t necessarily mean that they will use every feature in those first two weeks. Therefore, they do not need to learn how to use every single component from the very first day and demo.
You must offer easy-to-understand demos of how your users can start using your product right away, but you don’t need to teach them every tiny feature and function. They will learn these as needed. The most necessary aspect of demos is demonstrating how helpful you are to them and why they need you.
Streamline Your Teams
Your marketing team is your lead generator, but your SaaS sales team is your closer. If these two teams work entirely independently from each other, you will have difficulty closing deals, and your business will look like it doesn’t know its right hand from its left.
Establishing a strategy that keeps your marketing, sales, and content teams working together ensures that your company flows as one. For instance, you will have difficulty increasing your conversion rate if your marketing team creates a new promotion but your content team doesn’t showcase it. Your SaaS departments can also run into trouble if your sales team doesn’t understand when to alert customers about the sale.
Financing Your Sales Strategy
Creating a solidified sales strategy for your SaaS startup is one of the most crucial steps to ensure that your company reaches success as quickly as possible. Though, it is not as easy as deciding what you want and getting it.
Sales strategies take time, effort, and especially financing to reach success. Unfortunately, the old saying “it takes money to make money” is true. But as long as you spend that money wisely, you will make it back tenfold.
RevTek Capital is available for your financing needs. Whether you need to hire more personnel for your teams, focus on marketing, or need assistance developing a solid sales strategy, our revenue-based financing option will get you well on your way to reaching the next level of business. Call today at (602).909.5888 to speak with an expert about your financial future.