By: Brittany Schmigel, SMB Marketing, Oracle.
To get a pulse on today’s SaaS business landscape, Oracle teamed up with SaaStr to survey SaaS executives / owners about their top business concerns. We wanted to know what do they feel their biggest challenges are as they work to grow their business from $0 to $100M ARR?
With over 500 respondents, our survey results found SaaS leaders’ primary business concerns fell into one of three categories: sales, customers, or products. Continue reading to see respondents’ specific concerns within each of these categories—and how to solve them.
According to more than a third of respondents (35%), increasing sales is their number one priority…which makes sense, doesn’t it? Digging a little deeper, we found two specific concerns around sales:
Lack of sufficient visibility into their pipeline. Without sufficient visibility into the sales pipeline or across all business operations, sales forecasts and projections are negatively impacted. And this can, in turn, adversely affect your business. After all, you can’t make strategic business decisions using inaccurate or incomplete sales forecasts. Trying to do so will do so can result in operational deficiencies and wasted resources, like late deliveries or excess inventory.
Inability to secure the right sales talent needed to grow. Nearly 40% of SaaS leaders say they have trouble getting the sales talent they need to close deals and keep revenue coming in. It’s a challenge for SMBs and start-ups to compete with big corporations for talent—that’s no surprise. After all, it’s two completely different playing fields. SMBs have minimal resources compared to their larger counterparts, including smaller budgets, less brand name recognition, and (usually) a one-person HR “department” to manage sourcing and recruiting.
Survey respondents’ number 2 pain point is customers. Their specific concerns around customers include:
Ability to appropriately price offerings. The majority of respondents (55%) worry about pricing their offerings appropriately. Since the majority of revenue for SaaS companies comes from cloud subscriptions, renewals are key to growth. To keep up renewal levels, pricing needs to remain competitive with the rest of the market.
Reducing customer churn. Because customer renewals are so important, reducing customer churn is naturally a concern for SaaS executives. To ensure customers keep coming back, you need to provide an unrivaled customer experience that delights your audience and differentiates your company. Knowing your audience, anticipating their needs, and providing solutions is the formula for happy, satisfied buyers—and when you continuously satisfy buyers, they become loyal customers and loyal customers become brand advocates.
Growing revenue quickly and steadily enough. Nearly 50% of survey respondents said they aren’t sure how to grow revenue quickly or steadily enough. Fully maximizing the revenue stream from every customer will allow you to maintain growth, which leads us back to our earlier point about the importance of customer satisfaction.
Effectively managing product offerings is another pain point for SaaS company leaders. Three specific concerns include:
Lack of stickiness or product usability. In many cases, the product offering is the company; it is the basis of a successful business—so it’s no wonder that half of respondents worried about product stickiness and usability.
Creating a seamless, enjoyable user experience. Forty-six percent of SaaS leaders want to be sure they have created a seamless user experience for their customers. If customers find it enjoyable to use the product, then they will continue to use it AND renew their subscription. With regular adoption comes a decrease in customer churn and an increase in brand evangelism—both of which boost growth and lower the cost of sales.
Innovate and reduce time-to-market, because new offerings are critical to keeping up with the rapid pace of technological innovation and competition. SaaS executives must always be thinking of the next new product—because a good idea starts a business, but innovation grows it.
We understand where your company came from and where it’s going—and we understand the challenges you might encounter along the way, as you move from seed and development, to growth and establishment, to expansion and maturity.
The answer to these challenges is the right technology, with the ability to support your business now AND as you continue to grow. With Oracle Cloud, everyone in your start-up will have the tools they need to work efficiently, effectively, and collaboratively, as you work to get from $0 to $100M ARR.
Want to know more? Check out the complete SaaStr / Oracle survey results ebook.
To learn how the Oracle Cloud solution suite can help your SaaS company address your sales, customers, and product challenges, request a demo now.