Venture out into the crowded SaaS marketplace and you’ll find a seemingly unending supply of products and services battling to bolster their share of the market. Companies adopt SaaS products at an insane rate. According to BetterCloud, the number of SaaS products has skyrocketed tenfold since 2015. BetterCloud also predicts that by 2025, 85 percent of business applications will be SaaS-based.
However, while there are many products that exist in this space, not all of them prove to be effective — resulting in a great many failures. To take an active role in improving your chances for success; an effort can be aided by following this structured guide for developing a successful SaaS product. Statista predicts that revenue in the SaaS segment will reach $253.90 billion in 2023. So, jump on the bandwagon and roll up your sleeves before starting a SaaS business.
But first, let’s remind ourselves what SaaS software actually is.
What is a SaaS product?
SaaS, or Software as a Service, is a type of software that provides its users with access to the application or software over the internet. You can use the software from any place and on any device. SaaS is more popular among businesses, but it’s also common for personal usage.
The SaaS model allows for using a software product on a subscription basis. The idea behind this model is that the cost of the software is paid for by the user only when they use it and not as a one-time fee, like traditional software.
The advantages of SaaS software
The advantages of SaaS software include:
It’s easy to use. Users don’t have to install anything on their computer, making it easy to use and quick to set up.
It’s easy to access. Users can log in from anywhere with an internet connection, which means they don’t have to spend time managing multiple versions of software across multiple computers or devices.
It’s affordable. Because there’s no need for hardware or equipment for each user, SaaS is usually less expensive than traditional desktop applications.
It’s secure. With cloud hosting providers handling security measures and backups, your data is safer than it would be if you stored it locally on your computer or server.
SaaS product development is a complex process that involves a lot of valuable components. Here we will weave together the five main stages of any project to create a successful SaaS product.
How to build a SaaS product
Follow the steps below to build a successful SaaS solution.
Step 1: Roadmapping
To get started with your SaaS app development, you need to map out its roadmap. This will help you determine the future direction of your product and how it can adapt to changing market conditions.
Step 2: App architecture
App architecture is another important aspect of SaaS development that needs to be taken into account during the early stages of product development. It will help you determine how many servers you need for hosting your application and which software tools will be used for its deployment.
Step 3: Platform development
The platform is what allows different apps to communicate with each other and share information with other users in real-time. This makes it an essential part of any SaaS application since it facilitates communication between customers, partners, suppliers, etc., from all over the globe via an app portal or web portal interface that provides access to all company data from anywhere at any time without requiring users to log into individual applications separately every time they want to access their data or perform some tasks using specific apps.
Step 4: SaaS testing
Test the product on a small scale. This is to ensure that there are no major bugs in the software and it performs well with a limited number of users. If there are any issues during this phase, they can be fixed immediately before the product goes live.
Step 5: Implementing an MVP version
The next step involves developing a minimum viable product (MVP). The MVP version has all core features but lacks any advanced features or customizations. Therefore, you can test if clients want to pay for your software in the first place.
Step 6: Performance monitoring
After developing an MVP version, it is important that you monitor its performance continuously so as to identify any issues that may prevent users from using your software effectively. This will also help you get feedback from customers regarding their experience using the software so far and what they think about it. This feedback will help you improve the existing features as well as add new ones based on customer needs and requirements.
Step 7: Gathering user feedback
After implementing an MVP version along with its performance monitoring, it is now time to gather user feedback through surveys or interviews where people can provide their opinions about your product.
Even though SaaS products are getting more and more popular, not every business can afford to develop such a product in-house. Therefore, lots of organizations prefer to outsource SaaS development to software development companies. This way, they don’t need to spend their own resources on creating the product and can focus on marketing and selling it.
How to choose a SaaS development provider
When selecting a third-party provider, make sure that it’s highly experienced in SaaS development. A good SaaS provider will be able to help you develop your website from scratch or improve an existing one.
Thereby, follow these steps when choosing a SaaS development company:
- Look for a business partner that is experienced in SaaS development.
- Find out whether they have worked with similar companies before.
- Ask about their expertise in the industry you operate in.
- Review their portfolio of previous projects.
- Consider their pricing structure.
SaaS requires a lot of work and investment, so you must plan your app development in advance. Thus we suggest you use the agile methodology, as you need to start with an MVP (minimum viable product), present it to customers, improve based on their feedback and finally release the final version of your SaaS product. Planning your product development is crucial for SaaS.
We hope that the list of steps above will help you launch a successful SaaS business and make your SaaS product beneficial to a larger number of users. Although it might seem very complex, it’s not something you cannot achieve in just a couple of months after all. With regard to further promotion – make sure you have a website that follows an established design pattern and includes all important sections. Be ready to experiment with different approaches and split testing and focus on user research results to maximize conversion rates.