Defining the business: How to create more personalized experiences for customers
by Niclas Lilja, on Oct 3, 2018
When you go through the first step in establishing a successful SaaS company, you need to define the business. How you present your brand, the offerings you have in your portfolio, and your business model are crucial elements to ensuring that you are consistent and viable. But part of what you need to consider when defining the business is how far into customizations you'll get, and more importantly, how you can create personalized experiences for customers.
Why are personalized experiences important for Enterprise SaaS?
When it comes to B2C SaaS, volume is the name of the game, so keeping offerings limited and simple is necessary to ensure a quick sales process and easy implementation. However, in the B2B SaaS game, and especially with enterprise business, you need to consider how your potential customers are going to want to be accommodated.
As SaaS providers, we have to be aware that our solutions may not always be one-size-fits all. While you likely developed your products to service an overarching problem, how your different customers view and approach those problems may be different. Understanding that large companies have their own processes and methodologies can make you more successful in how you approach defining your terms, support, and contracts for each of your customers.
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What types of personalization can you offer?
There are many ways that you can offer personalization in SaaS, but in defining the business you need to determine not only what is feasible, but prioritize what your audience is looking for. Different ways that you can offer a personalized product and experience are:
- Integrations - what kind of integrations do you offer with the other platforms your customers may be using? How can you help them to implement these integrations, and how do you ensure that they will operate efficiently?
- Support - how do you offer support to your customers? Will you provide designated account managers or have a support team for everyone? If you are a small but growing SaaS business, you should take into consideration that this may be an area that you want to set aside resources for, because it can contribute largely to subscription renewals and prolonged contracts.
- Customizations - you should decide from the get-go about how much customization possibilities your customers are able to have. On one hand, if you allow your customers to pick and choose which features they want, essentially building their own product, it can be extremely demanding to have proper control over your subscriptions and billing. But if you don't offer any customizations, they may feel like they are paying too much for something they aren't fully using. You should, however consider having a standard offering, and allow for add-ons and upgrades for specific niches/subsegments of the market that give customers some personalization for their specific needs.
- Pricing - one way that SaaS companies can frequently get in over their heads is not establishing a consistent pricing model early on. If your terms are negotiated for each new customer, which is very common in the start, you can have difficulty calculating recurring revenue and forecasting for future profit. Your pricing model should be agile, and to do so, you need the right tools in order to ensure you can adapt according to what your customers want.
To stay competitive in the SaaS marketplace today, you need to start by defining your business early. One of the biggest things to consider is how you can create personalized experiences for your customers, while staying efficient and effective in your subscription management practices.