The globe seems stagnant due to the health crisis, but the growth of SaaS will tell you a different pandemic story as it continues to expand swiftly. However, despite the industry’s as fast as lightning development, growing your SaaS startup becomes more challenging daily.
Whether you are an upcoming or veteran business, growing remains a crucial part for you to conquer. So, you might want to consider these growth hacking techniques to ascertain your spot in the business world and skyrocket your valued customer base.
Throughout this article, you will learn more about the ten essential growth hacking tips and tactics for SaaS startups. Plus, some other information for you to begin establishing a well-built, thriving, and long-lasting business.
Growth Hacking Tips and Strategies for SaaS Startups
The figures speak volumes when it says that 20% of enterprises failed to flourish within a year, and 50% of others stopped at year five. Yet, if you think this statistic is to discourage you, you are wrong. One percent is a margin for you to hold onto and persist in this field. It is a bizarre journey but bearable, and goals are always achievable.
Let us take SaaS as a case in point. A SaaS, which stands for Software as a Service company, hosts applications accessible to customers throughout the internet from nearly any device. Its main objectives include managing servers, databases, and software for the benefit of internet users, mainly by web browsers. Customers of SaaS typically pay a monthly “subscription fee” to avail of the application and its perks. The subscription, however, varies depending on the data that needs to be in store, how many users will access the application, and the desired technical support. Further, SaaS startups provide services that focus on delivering specific software solutions to the target audience and follow business models to gather and keep consumers.
Are SaaS Startups Difficult to Grow?
Throughout the years of SaaS expansion, the competition is fiercer and fiercer as the day ends. Therefore, the traction gained by SaaS startups exploded to the extent that launching it feels like hanging by a thread. Given that there is no magic when it comes to success, you need to master or familiarize yourself with these business models or SaaS strategies for your startups.
- Subscription. A well-known and efficient model for SaaS companies, wherein they charge consumers placed monthly or annual fees for availing services.
- Freemium. A two-way business model used by companies that offer Software for free and eventually create add-ons and other incentives by charging customers fees.
- Per user. Compared to the others, this model charges customers a setup fee for every user added to the application and access to new features or services.
Moreover, here are some examples of the most popular types of SaaS strategies.
- Customer Resource Management. Enables customer information maintenance and deals monitoring through their pipeline.
- Project Management. Offers software that can support collaborators to communicate and remain on track.
- Human Resources. Companies can help monitor employees’ hours, schedules, salary, and hiring processes.
- Web Hosting and eCommerce. SaaS servers can manage every business’ online presence with the help of various digital marketing tools.
On the brighter side, SaaS companies can positively result in more significant contracts, opportunities, growth, and a chance to become household technology names in the field, such as ServiceNow, Dropbox, Snowflake, and Workday. SaaS’s unique selling point lies in its power to centralize the application management instead of onsite software installation.
Most likely, at this point, you are asking are SaaS startups challenging to grow. To have an unfiltered answer is both a yes and a no. Every action has consequences, and you cannot take that away easily. Thus, aside from the benefits of SaaS strategies listed above, companies also have risk factors. Here are some of them.
- Pricing — contracts are not that flexible when it comes to pricing.
- Downtime — accessing data relies on the reliability of a third-party system.
- Security — Data security also depends on a third party. Hence, some companies fail to comply with security standards and are not transparent enough about it.
To overcome these risks, you need to find the best SaaS company. In doing this, you need to slow down and do some research. Perhaps, you must first understand what customers want, test their support, and learn more through training. Leverage your best assets and align them with the best company of your choice. Have a contingency plan and prepare for data vulnerabilities. Study the price system and always prioritize the welfare of the consumers that best address their expectations and experience.
So, if you are invested in achieving your startup goals, check the following section to learn more about growth hacking strategies that will support your endeavors.
What is Growth Hacking?
Sean Ellis, the CEO and founder of GrowthHackers.com, devised the term “growth hacking” in 2010. From the word itself, it centers on “growth.” As for the second word, hacking means a brilliant shortcut that can yield better results using excellent and modernized tools and technology. Together, GrowthRocks defined growth hacking as data-driven marketing that employs rapid experimentation and low-cost strategies to distinguish the most efficient approaches to growing a business.
Generally, growth hacking strategies are geared toward expanding the user base as fast as possible while maintaining the financial aspect to a minimum. This kind of SaaS growth hacking tip enables marketers and business founders to realize their growth goals by trying digital marketing tools, techniques, and tactics at their respective disposals.
To give you growth hacking tips, here are some of the unique and cost-efficient tactics that can help you realize SaaS growth, such as captivating new visitors, lead conversions, and a satisfying user-centric experience.
Growth Hacking Strategies
1. Publish Your Tool in Product Hunt
Ryan Hoover launched Product Hunt as an online community-based site in 2013. It is a platform where marketers can publicize their products while allowing consumers to find the latest technology updates and other information. Product Hunt declared its site the leading avenue for the best products daily. In publishing your tools in Product Hunt, on the homepage, products get ranked by popularity identified by Upvotes from the other members of the community. It is very interactive since Product Hunt has a comment section for members to ask questions, show support, talk, and discuss. Here, you can regard what Spotibo, an SEO checker, did to launch a campaign in Product Hunt successfully. According to Spotibo, they prepared screenshots of the tools needed, a fun and creative logo, a catchy title, short descriptions, and creators’ comments and reviews. With the help of these promotional materials, Spotibo certainly garnered more prospective consumers under its belt.
2. Email Marketing
This growth hacking tactic will help your SaaS startup to send messages to a pool of audiences. You need to understand what information you want to disseminate and how to get in touch with all your consumers. In this growth hacking strategy, you should know how to organize, clean, and segment your email lists into several criteria. For email marketing segmentation, you need to learn more about your audiences. It includes demography (age, educational attainment, etc.), geography (where they are right now), psychographics (what are their goals, beliefs, and ideals?), and behavior (what are their purchasing habits, decision-making considerations, and other factors).
You can grasp the power of email marketing by considering Quick Sprout’s open rates. After five testing email marketing, it garnered more than 50% by employing persuasive email messaging. Another study found that including your recipient’s names in the email subject line can boost your open rates to more than 18.30%. This case study proves how email marketing can bring you to places as a growth hacking tactic.
3. Partner with Other Brands
This growth hacking strategy is always part of the initial plans for every business as it shows that they are touching some grass, which is a good thing. But first, you need to study their goals and principles and verify if you are on the same page. Transparency is also an ideal winning strategy for this one. It would be best if you did not get a brand that disconnects with your values. Therefore, be meticulous. Do your research and get to know them by heart.
4. Create a community in social media
Marketers consider social media a leading platform for audiences to see your offer and how they will benefit from you. Thus, building a community in various social media is essential for you to thrive in this industry. In doing this, you must remember how to maximize the platforms, what channel you will be most effective, and where your audiences are. Identify opportunities and threats. Analyze statistics, engagements, and viewership. Your SaaS startup will surely cut through the noise if you ace this growth hacking strategy. Hence, creating good, consistent, and interactive communities online is a SaaS strategy that you should not neglect.
5. Content Marketing
In eCommerce, content is also the king. Your materials are excellent assets to master because it gives your business a life to nurture, preserve, and develop. It stands as a determining influence on whether consumers will support or overlook your business. Content marketing establishes trustworthiness and status by consistently producing quality content. In fact, 80% of marketers consider content creation the most critical part of marketing. Pro tip:
- Know the trends.
- Align your content to your business goals.
- Study the figures.
- Explore and go out of the box. Audiences will surely love you when you give them what they want.
Further, you might also want to bank on SaaS guest posting. Most companies investing in this growth hacking tactic organically ballooned their traffic to 14 to 95% monthly. Some SaaS startups, chiefly those focusing on graphic design, outsource and utilize sites to uplift the appeal of their works. Others love to reach out to Just Creative, an agency headed by Jacob Cass. This brand firm has more than 200 monthly traffic. Therefore, tapping them as a platform for your articles will ensure great exposure to a vast audience, most likely to your similar target market.
6. Make Use of Referral Marketing
Launching a referral program is a decent growth hacking tactic since the customers will feel the reward of participating. Here, you will have the capacity to gain a bunch of contact information to connect with new potential customers. One way to begin this SaaS strategy is to set up an account on any referral program software that will walk you through the process, like Ambassador, Sweet Tooth, and Extole. You can also read more about some classic growth hacking case studies that used referral marketing as the fundamental mechanism to achieve success. Some prioritized establishing a landing page, setting up email campaigns, and returning customer shopping rewards, such as discounts.With these tactics, referral marketing solidifies its efficiency, leading Nielsen Global Online Consumer Survey to declare its trust rating of 9 out of 10. This fact only means that referrals or social circle recommendations are an effective approach to obtaining more consumers and eventually earning their trust.
7. Collaborate with Influencers
On any platform, you can reach anyone, even the brightest stars or starting online sensations. In doing this, you need to find someone who is credible and relatable for your startup business to grow. These partner influencers will act as the face of your business, so it is merely just for you to do some background checks and know their target market, engagement status, and anything in between. There is a risk in doing this, but the reward is always bigger. Today, a Rakuten Global survey reported that 88% of consumers have a higher tendency to purchase based on what they see from an online influencer, making these personalities a great eCommerce asset. To achieve this, consider generating a buyer persona or your business’ usual customer. Then, know who they are, what they do, their pain points, and how your company can help them. With this, it will become easier for you to identify influencers that can support you bridge the gap, address their concern, and marketing your business.
8. Run A/B Tests
This growth hacking tactic is also known as spit testing, wherein you are doing a marketing experiment by dividing your audiences to discover which campaign performs better. You can efficiently distinguish what helps and hurts your business in a snap through a trial-and-error technique. You can test brand messaging and campaign materials, such as the font style, size, color, layout, content, product image, photos, and others. Even your call to action or CTA can be challenged and enhanced. You can run some A/B tests with your product pages where sales occur. Experiment with your audiences and try to have a more diverse campaign for a richer comparison. You can try it with your marketing assets like emails, web pages, and videos and expose them to equal half of your consumers. Although tedious, this strategy is beneficial and will surely bring growth to your SaaS startup.
9. Make Videos for Video Content Platforms
Videos associated with your niche are a way to present or ignite your business to your audiences. Here you need to produce good content and find the best video-sharing platform. It can be an audience testimony, a comedic one, inspirational, how-to videos, BTS clips, and a lot more to consider. As to what video site, you should know where your audiences spend their spare time. YouTube is an incredible video stage for your long-form content. But if you want to grab your prospective customer’s attention within 15-30 sec, you better try understanding the TikTok algorithm. It is one of the most powerful digital marketing tools today. Just don’t fear what is coming next to your video content. Try to slow it down and research more before delving into sites that might hinder your success and growth. In a fast-paced world, rushing things typically lead to low-quality content, and we don’t want that to happen with your video content.
10. Capitalize on SEO
You can grasp more possible clients by progressing your online presence. To do this, you need to capitalize on this popular growth hacking strategy to expand your visibility as a startup. You can do this by reading more about Search Engine Optimization. Search results online are arranged based on the traffic they receive. The higher on the list, the better. So as more received traffic equates to the better potential of your startup. For instance, Google uses an algorithm to determine what pages to put as an answer to a particular query from a user. They consider hundreds of websites and have their own rules on how to rank them. Usually, they follow these three-core metrics in recognizing the sites’ quality and rank:
- Links – This serves as a vote of quality from different websites since most web developers do not want to link undervalued or poorly made sites. Hence, linking is a superior power of authority in ranking pages, especially for Google.
- Content – Search engines also do not forget to consider content a defining factor. They always want to give audiences the most relevant and helpful information. Thus, a massive part of SEO allocates time to analyzing the targeted content through keywords and audio-visual materials.
- Page structure – The last one focuses on the form of the HTML code, where webpages are written. The page structure significantly affects search engines’ capacity to examine a page. Here, the titles, URLs, headers, and other page essentials are under scrutiny to guarantee that the site is pertinent and in good condition to put on the top page.
Always prioritize your business goals and users’ total experience. While trying to attain your goals as a SaaS startup, you should remember that your audiences deserve to enjoy using your website. Try to bank on automation tools that do not need human intervention to make your Software testing fast, reliable, and efficient. Besides, it would be best if you also maximized digital marketing tools, like background remover, to elevate your content and rally more prospects behind you. Above all, always set achievable goals and be patient. These qualities are highly binding in this industry, full of uncertainties and heated competition. You are the one who will reap what you sow. So, continue to learn and evolve. No one can stop a person who always wants to grow and succeed.
Many companies use SaaS products and go through a lot before realizing their business dreams. As a starting in this world of eCommerce, there is no need to follow a specific pattern or rules. If you can break them, break and create your path. These strategies will only guide you to know where to start, but they do not give you a clear picture of where to end. In the Software as a service industry, you have the power to decide on what you want to happen. These growth hacking strategies are always free for you to use, practice, and share. Just do you and start experimenting. No one will judge you for trying what you think is best for your startup. Many people are rooting for and waiting for your success.
Written by Yen Pedrajas, a content writer for Removal.AI, an image background remover tool.
She is a digital marketing and eCommerce enthusiast who loves to write and share new insights about marketing, eCommerce, and growth hacking tips for startup businesses.