The right SaaS products can grow exponentially in a very short space of time. The question is, how do you achieve this growth?
Here are eight essential tips to help you increase sales for your SaaS business.
1. Salespeople Sell SaaS Products
There’s a slight misconception that Saas products sell themselves.
Yes, a great SaaS product will grow organically. Think about the rise of Zoom for example. One person invites another, they like how it’s easy to use, and then they invite the next person.
However, there’s still a lot of hard work going on in the background, and salespeople are vitally important to this. Sales experience is important in this equation, but the key attracting new customers is understanding the audience and knowing the product inside out.
Major SaaS companies like Zapier have had huge success with a model where every staff member does customer success. This means salespeople have to have an intricate knowledge of the product.
No matter how great your product is, you don’t want to rely on it selling itself. You have to recognize that your salespeople will play a key role in your success.
2. Write-Off Unqualified Leads
You have limited resources and they need to be focused on the highest-value opportunities. Yes, you want to create new sales, but if you’re forcing it, then it’s likely to backfire.
Organic growth happens when you get your product in the hands of the people who are going to benefit from it the most. When you’re selling it to someone with little need for it just to earn a quick buck, it halts this momentum and risks negative reviews.
When you’re trying to get things off the ground and sales seem hard to come by, it’s tempting to go after every single lead and not quit until you get the sale. However, it’s vital you get rid of the unqualified leads, and focus your resources on the prospects that remain.
3. Keep Free Trials Short
It may seem like the longer the trial the more value for the prospect.
There are two problems with this thought though:
- The longer your free trial is, the longer it is until you get money coming in
- Long trials encourage inaction
The more time you give people to trial your product, the more likely it is to lead to procrastination, and them eventually forgetting about your brand. A big part of sales is about creating urgency (limited stock, one-time-only offer, etc.), but when your trial is too long, some of that motivation is lost.
When the trial is short – there’s an urgency for people to make use of the trial.
14 days is a common trial length for a reason – it’s more than enough time for people to understand the value of your product.
4. Demos are Demonstrations of Value
Demos aren’t an early version of onboarding – they’re a demonstration of value.
This means it’s not about focusing on what individual buttons do, it’s about focusing on how your features solve the customer’s pain points. It’s too easy to get distracted and lose focus on the big picture of solving problems.
Account executives should be adept at personalizing each demo and making sure it’s focused on value. Use the time to answer objections, and if no objections are raised, then preempt common objections. The demo is more than just a quick run through the products, it’s an opportunity to progress the conversation, and this shouldn’t be missed.
Again, keep it short – understand the value of people’s time and keep it to about 15 minutes of useful information.
5. Pick Up the Phone and Follow Up
We live in a techy world, but there’s no substitution for having a real conversation with prospects and conducting effective outbound prospecting. It’s too easy to fall back on email all the time when sometimes, you’ve just got to pick up the phone.
For example, when someone signs up for your free trial – call them:
- Answer their questions
- Show the value of your product
- Encourage them to take advantage of the free trial while it’s still fresh in their minds
- Build the relationship
You can’t underestimate the power of touchpoints. Great SaaS products sell themselves (to some extent) but so do relationships and every touchpoint helps build the relationship. One of the best ways to do this is by picking up the phone.
6. Optimize Your Email Campaigns
In the vast majority of cases, you don’t make a sale after the first touchpoint. Instead, you’ve got to continually strive to create new touchpoints and your email campaigns are one of the best ways to do this.
We all know what it’s like to get spammy emails in our inboxes though, therefore email management is extremely important.
If you’re going to use email marketing to grow your SaaS sales, then you’ve got to be targeted, inventive, and personalize your approach.
Start by segmenting your audience by their position in the sales funnel so you can send them personalized content, and remember the two most important things:
- Offer value with everything you send – what’s in it for the recipient?
- Respect the recipient’s time and privacy, but don’t be afraid to send high-quality emails (don’t give up after one unanswered email).
Email outreach can be highly successful, but you’ve got to have a coherent plan.
7. Invest In High-Quality Content
The resources you provide prospects through an effective content strategy will have a direct impact on your sales. If you can offer unique research, put the benefits of your product in simple terms, address people’s pain points, and more, then it’s going to help your brand to stand out from the crowd.
Content is important because it’s the backbone of virtually everything you do. You might be on a sales call and say “hang on a second, let me email you through this complete guide,” or you might get people’s attention with a snappy Facebook post about a recent study – however you interact with your prospects, content will play a part.
If you’re looking to provide more value than most of your competitors will, consider investing in webinar software and host monthly educational webinars that give your prospective clients insights that they won’t find anywhere else.
While premium content like webinars can be cumbersome to create, the engagement you get is second to none and you can always have a call to action near the end of the presentation to move prospects through your sales funnel.
8. Limit Customer Churn
You work hard to create customers, but so often we forget about keeping them. SaaS sales are as much about keeping existing customers as bringing in new ones. Unfortunately, too many companies focus all of their sales budgets on customer acquisition at the expense of retention.
This is undoing a lot of the good work you’ve already done.
There’s no point bringing in 2,000 new customers each month if 2,500 are leaving you, so retention has to be one of your primary focuses.
Make sure customer lifetime value is a key metric and invest in retention with the same kind of urgency as you do acquisition.
It’s easy to look at the incredible growth of some SaaS companies in recent years and think it’s all about the product. Of course, a great product is fundamentally important, but so are talented salespeople.
You can’t just rely on organic growth, and even if you do achieve success through this method, it’s going to be a lot slower than if you have a well-oiled sales machine.
Before you bring your SaaS product to market, you should have a well-thought-out sales plan, and these eight tips can help you achieve this.