SaaS Customer Journey

SaaS Customer Journey

Software as a service (SaaS) is a business model that has emerged with the advent of the digital age. A software can be licensed on a subscription basis, a part of cloud computing. SaaS customer journeys are therefore the journeys that consumers take in order to purchase a given software using this model.

The journey to purchase a software is different from the traditional customer journey due to the subscription model: the journey doesn’t end with purchase, but rather continues on with renewal and expansion. An organization might purchase a software as a one-time use, but find it useful to retain and use on a regular basis. This is the key factor in many SaaS models, the fact that satisfied customers keep coming back for more.

SaaS is seen in various forms of software such as image editors, text analytics tools, content management platforms, video processors, and similar. In many cases these programmes exist as free, downloadable or OS-standard software in some form, however these are more basic and often the deciding factor in purchase is the limitations of said free software. In this case, the consumer purchases the software, uses and renews in the case where they decide they want to keep using the suite. It’s beneficial to both the customer and the business to proceed with renewal, thus more revenue is obtained. Any business that relies on SaaS as their main revenue source needs to be aware of customer demands and expectations, lest they fall behind and fail to gain renewals.

Characteristics of the SaaS industry

The SaaS industry is all about easy access, as the software is usually hosted on a cloud server and then can be remotely accessed from anywhere by the consumer. It’s defined by several characteristics which make it distinct from other industries:

  • Multi-tenant architecture, where all users share a single common code base that is centrally maintained, but splits into different sections in order to provide a more personalized software.
  • Ease of access is critical, with most software needing merely a login and password to access from anywhere on the planet on any compatible device. It makes it much easier to use on the consumer end, but also very easy to monitor use and show trends that offline software wouldn’t be able to provide you with. 
  • Customization is more readily available, as the business can be on the ball with what their customers need on a real-time basis. It’s also easy to provide optional customization thanks to the multi-tenant structure which allows for users to pick and choose what alterations they wish to make to the base program, rather than the software updates of traditional installed software which leave no room for choice.

SaaS is far more dynamic than a traditional software purchase, with alterations being made in shorter times and the technology evolving to mold to the customers’ needs far more closely and more personally than any download software.

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