The global market for SaaS just topped $100 billion, and the SaaS industry is predicted to grow much further and generate $157 billion by 2022.
During the pandemic, companies turned to SaaS as their software solution of choice—and as the market grows, more and more SaaS products will be needed. There are still many niches which are not even close to saturation.
Source: Software Advice
This means starting up a startup in SaaS could be a lucrative venture—and even an overnight success, so long as you do your homework and establish that there’s a gap in the market for your solution.
If you’re thinking about starting up an SaaS company, it can be difficult to come up with a successful idea—so read on for some examples and inspiration. In this post we’ll look at:
SaaS—or software as a service—is a term that describes business applications delivered on a subscription basis, making them affordable and flexible enough to suit all budgets.
SaaS is a cloud computing software delivery model that enables data to be accessed from anywhere. A SaaS software vendor hosts and maintains the servers, databases, and code that make up the application.
There are three main business models when it comes to SaaS companies:
These SaaS firms generally offer automation of various processes, such as the creation of documentation, management of existing data, and collaboration within teams.
These SaaS companies appeal to customers that have low-risk policies. They are subscription-based platforms that can offer quick deployment, always on availability, and mobility to customers.
Micro SaaS businesses have small teams consisting of just one to three members. Micro SaaS ideas usually cover a very narrow niche and perform a specific task; e.g., keyword analysis for SEO.
There are multiple reasons to opt for an SaaS application model of business including flexibility, ease of deployment, scalability, and a predictable revenue stream. Let’s look briefly at some of these benefits.
Cloud-based SaaS allows businesses to expand with ease due to its inherent scalability. Upgrading an SaaS product is simpler than upscaling any other kind of startup company.
SaaS is all about software development, so service providers have no need to invest in expensive hardware, which makes a huge difference when it comes to initial development costs.
Demand for SaaS businesses is high due to its extensive reach. Businesses can access SaaS apps from any digital device or location, making it especially convenient for mobile platforms.
SaaS providers take care of all the necessary software updates and develop new features over time. This means businesses don’t have to invest in significant amounts of downtime.
It’s estimated that companies with recurring revenue are worth 16 times those with a one-time revenue model. As an SaaS solutions provider, you will benefit from regular income—providing you with much-needed stability to ensure the success of your enterprise.
When starting out, it’s easy to come up with ideas which, while fun, are difficult to put into practice—or turn out not to be something people will pay for.
To find good SaaS business ideas, you need to change your mindset and focus on the following steps to guarantee success:
If you have specific industry experience, you are well-placed to know where there are gaps in the market that you could solve. If you’re an expert in digital marketing, this area could be worth pursuing.
When it comes to finding a good idea for an SaaS product, focus on finding problems people have. Before committing to a product idea, you’ll need to produce and deliver a simplified version or minimum viable product (MVP) to customers—to avoid making a costly mistake.
There are still markets left out online due to their particular challenges or limited knowledge. Start out by researching these evolving markets to find suitable SaaS product ideas that may appeal.
To help you get ahead of the game when looking for good SaaS startup ideas, we’ve done some of the legwork for you. We’ve gathered together some product-types with real potential—and room for exciting new entrants—so read on and get inspired.
A marketing software management platform can help to automate email, SMS, and social media management. Marketing automation platforms offer solutions to help with marketing strategy and streamlining workflows, as well as metrics to measure the results of marketing campaigns.
Video conferencing has undergone a massive boom over recent years, with real-time video rendering found to be invaluable for boosting a company’s online presence.
It’s a software sector that’s traditionally been led by larger companies like Adobe, though their pricing models are not flexible enough for small companies—meaning it could be a fertile area to target for a startup idea.
Telemedicine enables healthcare professionals to consult with patients online. It’s already a large market—and one that’s predicted to get even larger, making it an ideal space for startups to move into.
Telehealthcare software brings added convenience and accessibility to both patients and doctors. Examples of SaaS tools in this field include remote patient monitoring and mobile health.
Virtual assistant software interprets human language and aids engagement with customers. It’s a growing field that’s waiting for new SaaS entrants to help develop conversational commerce. This type of software can often handle many diverse tasks, from team scheduling and planning to measuring staff engagement.
E-invoicing is, according to Zion Market Research, a software solution that looks set to dominate the accounts payable market.
This startup idea aims to improve management of invoices by accelerating invoice approval, and helping to cut down on fraud. Invoice automation improves accuracy, requires fewer resources, and boosts supplier relationships.
Demand for KPI SaaS products is huge, since it’s a factor that can significantly impact a company’s performance. Automated software can bring big benefits in terms of increasing an organization’s productivity and empowering teams with real-time insights on cloud-based dashboards.
In an increasingly digital-led world, the need for visual data exchange is growing—as is the need for startups in this area. Team communication tools provide opportunities for effective conversation and collaboration among employees. These types of software tools also encourage better project management and productivity for teams.
Designer bookmarks include micro SaaS app Chrome extensions that enable you to bookmark websites, with the app automatically pulling in relevant information from the page source which is stored.
Content strategy development is a time-consuming process, so the demand for a SaaS product to help is on the increase. Content planning solutions provide a platform for creating, planning, and analyzing content. These tools also provide marketers with a way to research, optimize, and distribute content.
Developing a platform-based software solution for HR, planning, and finance departments is a trending and profitable SaaS idea. These SaaS products should help to manage accounting tasks and provide analytics, along with improved functionality for companies. ERP systems can significantly bring down workloads for staff—making this a highly popular solution and one frequently searched for online.
Source: SPD Load
There’s a wealth of potentially profitable product ideas in the freelance CRM sector. On-demand software is very popular with this demographic and offers them a way to track customer interactions and access analytics, email marketing, and reporting tools via intuitive APIs.
Modern marketing requires social networking—and regular social media posts on all relevant networks—along with a way to monitor that content in order to understand what’s working best. SaaS software that can help businesses gather insights and statistics across all platforms is highly valuable for companies, and so is an idea worth considering.
With so many services available for purchase over the internet, and providers changing their prices all the time, finding pricing information for various plans is complex. This is why an SaaS solution that can elaborate on the pricing of different services is much in demand by consumers.
A profitable SaaS idea could be to develop an app that enhances tech skills for job seekers. Companies always need highly skilled people, and if your app can offer applicants a way to boost their credentials, it could take off. There is some competition out there, but still plenty of room for new entrants.
OKR (objectives and key results) tracking software creates alignment around company goals. This is a relatively new SaaS software area and therefore offers good potential for new entrants to the market. OKR tracking solutions provide reports and enable users to view progress on dashboards, making tracking results visible and measurable.
Now that we’ve looked at some possible product areas to think about, here are some examples of SaaS companies who’ve taken their ideas to market and become highly successful in their industry sectors.
RingCentral is a cloud-based phone system that supports seamless business communication. It enables companies to engage in online meetings, conferences, and much more, operating within an SaaS model of delivery. This means customers don’t have to invest in the costs of setting up physical telephony systems—and employees don’t require time-consuming training.
RingCentral works with Android and iOS devices, so employees can work both onsite and remotely without sacrificing call quality or communications ability. RingCentral offers various subscription-based pricing plans to suit various budgets and requirements.
Brightpearl’s robust infrastructure centralizes and automates post-purchase operations from inventory and order management to warehousing, fulfilment, shipping, and accounting. When core operations are optimized, it’s easy to adapt to changes in the marketplace and grow a business. Brightpearl accompanies customers from project scoping to implementation with 24/7 support.
Global App Testing is an SaaS company that offers functional web and app testing. The software uses a mix of crowdtesting and intelligent automation to help customers release the highest quality software—wherever they are located in the world.
Users can utilize the expertise of over 50,000 testers and automation tools, so developers can concentrate on fixing the bugs that matter and deliver faster, more predictable releases.
Automation Anywhere is the only cloud-native RPA (robotic process automation) platform, enabling users to use intelligent automation to drive digital transformation and reduce repetitive front-end tasks. The solution uses enterprise-grade technology and offers users an intuitive experience when automating tasks of any level of complexity.
Source: Automation Anywhere
Toggl is an SaaS-based solution that makes time-tracking easy, and it’s available for individuals and businesses alike. It enables users to analyze their time, work more efficiently, and access insightful reports—with data from all projects and users combined in one dashboard. Toggl requires no downtime to get started and can be used on desktop or mobile—or inside your preferred apps (with over 100 integrations).
Salesforce is the leading SaaS CRM software solution that enables companies to manage and improve their relationships with customers, prospects, and partners in a single platform. Users benefit from multiple tools designed to help sales teams close deals, increase their productivity, and keep the sales pipeline full of hot leads—without any requirement to invest in expensive software or hardware.
From call-center software to self-service communities, Salesforce’s solutions allow for more personalized cross-channel experiences to make customer service more responsive, intuitive, and flexible, so customers get a high quality, faster service.
Hubspot is a marketing, sales, and service SaaS software provider designed to help businesses grow. Users can make use of free tools—then upgrade as they require more services.
Hubspot software’s popular features include:
Shift4Shop is an eCommerce SaaS solution that helps retailers to build websites and grow their businesses. It’s free to get started, and includes a feature-rich website builder, order and product management system, and customer marketing tools. Users can choose from industry-specific templates which are mobile-friendly and customizable.
Source: Shift 4 Shop
Designed for modern businesses, Freshservice is an intelligent service management solution that offers a 21-day free trial. The SaaS-based software improves agent productivity by providing them with ML (machine learning)-powered suggestions and responses via their channel of choice, whether MS Teams, Slack, or via the Freshservice chatbot.
An all-in-one workspace app, Notion is an SaaS-based tool that enables teams to write, plan, and get organized. The solution is built to empower teams and solve problems—enabling them to visualize a product roadmap, coordinate releases, and codify processes. Notion sets out to connect everyone and eliminate silos.
Lately is a social media management tool that creates content using the power of artificial intelligence—or AI. The SaaS software can turn videos, podcasts, and blogs into prime social media content, using intelligence that studies what audiences want to watch, hear, or read. This means less time needs to be spent writing, with content that is designed to generate high quality leads.
Segment is a leading customer data platform that collects, cleans, and helps companies control their customer data. It gathers events from web and mobile apps and provides every team member with a comprehensive toolkit to enable them to get a single view of customers. From marketing and products to engineering code, Segment unifies customers’ touch points across all channels and platforms.
Users can access analytics, A/B testing, and data warehouse tools and create the perfect data foundation.
Calendly provides a hub for scheduling meetings and eliminates the need for back-and-forth emails, leaving teams free to get on with their work. The app enables scheduling for over 200,000 meetings, allowing users to set simple rules and share their links with guests. Customers can set up meetings on days and times that are convenient with others—instantly.
Featurespace uses smart technology—based on adaptive behavioral analytics—to enable companies in the financial services industry to solve financial crime.
The SaaS platform can be used on-premises or via fully hosted cloud in over 180 countries—and models and predicts individual behavior in real-time for fraud prevention and anti-money laundering. Featurespace is currently used by some of the world’s biggest banks and payment processors.
This calendar management software for marketers helps employees to get more done in less time by organizing all marketing activities in one place.
Team members can see, schedule, and share their marketing with others, using a suite of products to better coordinate projects and processes. CoSchedule is used by 30,000 marketers in over 100 countries and it is included in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Content Marketing Platforms 2020.
There’s a huge and growing SaaS market due to the many advantages it provides to users. This demand, together with the relative ease of getting an SaaS venture up and running—and potential to grow rapidly with minimal investment—makes this startup model highly attractive.
Before you embark on your SaaS venture, it’s essential to identify a gap in the market for your software product to see where your solution could help to solve an important problem for potential customers. We hope this post gave you some food for thought—and maybe even sparked an idea that could turn you into the next big SaaS startup success story.
If you are enjoying this post why not book a consultation with accelerate agency to see how we can help skyrocket your SaaS business