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How to Start Online SaaS business in 2021?
SaaS or commonly known as Software as a Service business is an industry that is booming in the tech world. There are many entrepreneurs that are engaging themselves in this industry and have been making software that is new and which can help people by making their life easier. However, there have also been speculations about the SaaS business reaching its peak with all the solutions and AI being already present. This business is very simple you just have to identify and problem and then provide a solution.
What is SaaS Business
According to its literal definition, ‘Software as a service is a software licensing and delivery model in which software is licensed on a subscription basis and is centrally hosted. It is also referred to as, ‘On-demand Software or Web-based or Web-hosted software. A software accessible through a web browser, SaaS is helpful in areas such as Customer Relationship Management (CRM), office software, messaging software, accounting, and so on.
1. Finding a Problem and a Solution
It sounds confusing, but in the SaaS business, the success lies in addressing a problem that is faced by everyone in today’s tech world. In reality, it doesn’t even have to be a problem, there are many software developers or app developers who have addressed a problem that already had software to have a solution, the only difference was that their own software worked faster and more effective, giving a better solution than the previous software. The hint here lies in not finding a problem in someone else’s life but in your own, for you will be able to relate better if you are facing the problem yourself.
2. Draw your Plan
Once you have figured out the problem that you want to address and the possible solution that your software may offer, it is better to plan things out. Your plan should include all the necessary steps and requirements for your SaaS business. It should also include all the pros and the cons of your software and the problem that it is going to address. This plan would also be helpful for you to showcase your investors for getting their attention.
3. Research the Market
This step is crucial after figuring out your problem and probable solution. You need to take your software on a big-scale and try to understand if it would be helpful to the consumer, or how many consumers would be willing to purchase your software as a service for making their life easier, this would help you to know the potential of your software and the profits that you may be able to earn. The other thing that you should focus on is if there are other companies or businesses having similar or same software such as yours.
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4. Pricing and Customers
We all know that SaaS business works on a subscription basis, it could be monthly, quarterly, or annually. Before moving to prices, you should discuss about your software with your inner-circle and take their opinion for the same, this would give you an idea of how your software would perform. As for pricing, it would be recommended to start with a low price considering if you have competition. However, according to the trend you would have to keep changing your pricing model, you need to be prepared for that.
5. Finance and Funding
Securing your finances and funds from various services is one of the difficult phases that entrepreneurs face. As for the Software as a Service business, you would require a good amount of funds for running your business as it is uncertain how many people would subscribe to your model once it launches in the market. It would be favourable to have investors back up your project, you can showcase them your one-page pitch and take them on your side. For instance, you can also note down all of your expenses and modes of expenses that you would incur, this would help you to secure a few of your funds as reserves or as working capital, and this would also sound professional in the eyes of investors.
6. Start Building your Brand and legalities
You would need to acquire various licenses and legal formalities that are required for the SaaS business. After acquiring the necessary licenses and permissions your primary focus should be on building your brand. The first step towards brand building should be to select a decent domain name for your business. Your domain name and the design would be the first impression of your professionalism and it would create an impact on people accordingly. All SaaS businesses that are successful have always focused on building their brand name first, and that’s how they acquire customers one by one for their subscription-based model as this business majorly works on word of mouth.
7. Developing and Launching your Product
Here comes the end stage of your business launch checklist. Before having your product launch you need to give a final check to all the technical requirements and the working of the same. You have to ensure that it is completely developed or that there are no glitches at any point, because in case there is, it would impact your brand name right from the beginning. The first impression is always the last and having your initial customers face some issues while using your product would lead to a bad reputation, thereby blocking most of your future sales. Hence, after ensuring the proper development of your product, you can launch it right away.
The last but not the least point that is crucial for starting an Online SaaS business is marketing. You would need heavy marketing to promote your SaaS business, word of mouth would not work from the beginning. Many go for referral and affiliate models to promote their business. Social media ads and google ads are also effective for promoting your business. Your major funds should be reserved for marketing your software.
Software as a service business is an emerging and growing industry in the tech world. To Start an Online SaaS business, you need to Identify a problem and create a Solution, draw your Plan, Research the Market, Handle Pricing and customers, Secure financing and Funding, building your brand and legalities, developing and launching the product, and Marketing.