The SaaS model is fundamentally adaptable, allowing it to function without the infrastructure traditionally associated with the high-level business. Programmers and support agents don’t need spacious offices or advanced gadgets to deal with everyday operations. And since SaaS is geared towards people and companies working in similarly-flexible ways, it’s easy to see why software developers in the field are professionally undisturbed by pandemic-style problems.
But that doesn’t mean that it’s easy for SaaS brands to operate in rough circumstances. That they don’t face the obstacles of other businesses works against them in some ways. Consider that they’re often placed under enormous pressure, expected to cater to huge numbers of customers expecting — even demanding — to receive rock-solid service. The result is the drive to scale rapidly or be left behind by the many alternative services springing up every day.
Trying to measure up inevitably proves difficult, leaving many SaaS companies struggling to maintain the pace. They scramble to get through the myriad complex workflows required to get through their days, fearing all the while that any pause — or even slowdown — will prompt their customers to go elsewhere. So what’s the solution?
Well, scaling back down is technically possible, but that means giving up market share to brands that aren’t likely to return it. A better solution is to implement broad automation to race through many of the most awkward workflows and free workers up to put their time towards more creative and engaging tasks.
In this post, we’re going to succinctly explain how you can use automation to make your SaaS business more efficient, getting time-consuming workflows out of the way. Let’s get started.
The series of events leading up to conversion is obviously of vital importance. You need to carefully cultivate leads, taking them from first brand exposure to a regular subscription, and so much can go wrong along the way. Consider that a SaaS subscription can feel like a big commitment, particularly when it’s financially practical to choose discounted long-term rates. You don’t get to just sit back and relax while new customers arrive.
With that said, you can do much to speed up that process by automating certain elements. Think about the PPC stage. Not only can you automate optimization by carrying out straightforward A/B testing, but you can also automate the content creation process by using an AI-driven service to generate marketing copy. You can set your parameters and let it spool out viable PPC ads with no manual input (aside from final checks).
Instead of arranging consultations (when they’re necessary in addition to — or in place of — free trial periods), you can use a scheduling tool to allow prospective customers to book consultations without needing your direct involvement. No longer needing to deal with these elements will make your life considerably easier.
And then there’s the logistical matter of managing your subscriptions, and keeping your all-important customers from going elsewhere. Taking the time to deploy a subscription management tool will grant you the freedom to smooth out your payment process, push upsells, make concessions for dissatisfied customers, and generally keep your revenue ticking over.Also read: 10 Best Saas Marketing Tools And Platforms For 2021
These days, SaaS customers expect their concerns to be noticed regardless of where online they state them. Someone who gets frustrated with a service and talks about it on Twitter will form a dim opinion of the service provider if no one from the support team notices it. It’s taken as a sign of professionalism that a modern company monitors its brand mentions across all popular platforms (even including forum sites such as Reddit).
Dealing with those support issues can take up a lot of time, though. It doesn’t help that even keeping track of them is a challenge. So what if you could take that part out of the equation and restrict the work to actually solving issues? You can, and the key is drawing your support queries from multiple sources into just one location.
This is going to be particularly valuable if you run an international operation, as the issue of miscommunication for foreign-language support is exacerbated by messages getting lost. Using shared inbox software (a shared inbox centralizes your conversations) to bring everything together will cut down on your required support staff and let you focus on your core business.
Every SaaS business needs to keep its customers apprised of service updates. Is there downtime planned? What new features are being rolled out? Letting people know what’s going on can take hours. Using a social media post scheduler will drastically accelerate this process, allowing you to create one update that gets neatly fits into the format requirements of each platform — and even recycle your content to ensure it gets seen.
Combine this with automated customer surveying to ensure that people are getting the information they need (here’s a viable service) and you’ll find it easy to release exactly as much detail as is required. This will take a lot of strain away from engineering types, many of whom may not be ideally suited to communicating ideas to end users.
How much time do you put towards sharing information internally? There’s probably a fair amount of discussion in the midst of your daily activity, and that discussion isn’t strictly necessary. To address this, and to add to the aforementioned customer support work, it makes a lot of sense to create a knowledge base accessible to employees and customers alike.
You’ll want to segment the sections, of course, with some key pieces being restricted to employees — but on the whole, the information should be open to everyone. This will automate away some common issues. Instead of needing to ask their colleagues, any of your workers will be able to find the information they require in just a few clicks.
We’ve given you four great examples of how your SaaS business can automate time-consuming workflows, explaining the benefits of each and providing you with links to helpful resources. All you have to do is put our tips into practice and then reap the benefits they bring.
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