table of content
Software as a Service (SaaS) is a type of cloud software that companies host and make available for their customers over the internet. SaaS businesses opt for a subscription-based model, and unlike regular applications, you cannot download these solutions on your computer or mobile devices.
The global SaaS sector is further bifurcated into two segments: Business-to-Consumer (B2C) SaaS and Business-to-Business (B2B) SaaS. B2C SaaS focuses on developing direct customer solutions, while B2B SaaS creates software solutions for businesses.
Here is a comprehensive B2B SaaS guide that highlights tried and tested techniques to gain expertise in B2B SaaS sales. We are confident that you’ll have several actionable points to develop your SaaS sales strategy by the time you complete reading this guide.
What is B2B SaaS?
B2B SaaS is software that is typically sold to businesses and not customers. For example, suppose you own an eCommerce store. To run this store successfully, you need to manage several activities like warehousing, inventory planning, marketing, shipping, invoicing, etc. An entrepreneur can't handle all these aspects manually.
So what’s the solution?
B2B SaaS Market Size and Growth Potential
The global B2B SaaS market is evolving rapidly. Some of the critical trends visible in this industry are as follows:
What is B2B SaaS Sales, and How is it Different?
B2B SaaS sales involve selling SaaS solutions to small, medium, and large businesses. Sales reps involved in SaaS sales focus on generating and converting new leads or retaining existing clients through upselling. The target customers of B2B SaaS sales are C-suite executives, so reps working in this industry should be highly skilled and knowledgeable about closing sales deals.
One of the biggest differences between traditional sales and B2B SaaS sales is that sales cycles are longer due to the involvement of multiple touchpoints, leading to greater complexity. Sales deals are also highly expensive.
Successful B2B SaaS sales deals require active collaboration between marketing and sales teams. Marketing teams nurture prospects and convert them into Marketing Qualified Leads (MQLs), and sales teams take the next steps to turn these leads into Sales Qualified Leads (SQLs).
Sales reps need to communicate the benefits and features of a SaaS solution to the prospects and explain how it can address their pain points. That’s the only way to stand out in the field of B2B SaaS selling.
7 Strategies to Master B2B SaaS Selling
B2B SaaS sales require targeted research, attention to detail, and deep product knowledge. Here are a few tips that can help the reps to close more SaaS sales deals in 2022:
1. Build a small but targeted portfolio
Entrepreneurs dominate the B2B SaaS market by focusing largely on personalisation. If an organisation has a large portfolio of multiple products, the scope of conversion can be reduced. Specialisation and a targeted offering will help you win potential customers’ trust. From a sales point of view, it’s also easier for reps to project their brand as an expert in that industry.
For instance, think of Slack in the global B2B SaaS sector, which dominates business messaging. Slack has a small and targeted portfolio of services. This brand solely focuses on instant business messaging, video conferencing, and productivity bots. This strategy has won Slack the reputation as the #1 business messaging platform.
Similarly, B2B SaaS companies should begin with one compelling core offering and explore additional features eventually. The main elements of this approach are as follows:
- Land - Start with one or two core cloud-based services that are easy to host. Have a simple yet meaningful value proposition for these services. This will simplify the B2B SaaS sales process and help both reps and customers to understand the product.
- Engage - Next, plan appropriate onboarding activities to engage the customers for a long time. Some effective strategies can be regular webinars, pre-recorded tutorials and easy access to the knowledge resources.
- Expand - As you see that the existing customers are retained, start exploring your portfolio further. Interact with the customers, discover their expectations, and accordingly plan new services.
2. Replace “push” marketing with “pull”
There are two different marketing approaches. The first is a push strategy where brands push the prospects with useful information and expect their presence. The second is the pull strategy, where companies provide specific information to the buyers so that they become interested and are drawn in automatically to take action.
A push strategy is all about advertising and promotions. It is costly but effective to some extent. Alternatively, a pull strategy is all about offering value and generating organic interest. You may offer useful resources to the customers to pull them in, such as eBooks, datasheets, whitepapers, blogs, etc. The idea is to provide the buyers with the information they are looking for to automatically come to your website, searching for more.
While both types of marketing work for B2B SaaS brands, we are slightly aligned toward the pull strategy. It is cost-effective and focuses on relationship-building rather than simply encouraging sales.
3. Solve a problem instead of selling features
B2B SaaS sales is tricky and selling the advanced features of a product is not sufficient to impress prospects. To create a long-lasting impression, sales reps should focus on solving a problem faced by the customers. That’s how potential customers will realise the value of your product and become interested.
Here are some crucial steps to master this trick:
- Sales reps should always practice active listening. Listen to the problems the prospects face and the pain points they are highlighting to find the solution that fits the prospects’ needs.
- Handle objections like a pro. The involvement of multiple decision-makers will invite multiple objections in different stages of B2B SaaS sales. These objections can be related to features, pricing, ownership, security, etc. Make sure to handle them with a logical explanation.
4. Invest in content marketing
Targeted content marketing educates the prospects and provides them with sufficient knowledge about your product. By investing in content marketing, brands provide the prospects with all the resources they need to evaluate their services before making a decision.
With content marketing, half of the sales reps' jobs are already done. They can directly approach the prospects for the next steps.
There are various types of content that B2B SaaS companies can leverage. Some top choices include:
- Social media posts
SaaS companies can drive traffic through powerful content marketing. They can also distribute and repurpose core content messages across their various platforms, like Medium, Quora, Reddit, LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube.
5. Provide free trials and create a nurturing strategy
Many organisations hesitate to offer free trials as it would increase their customer acquisition costs. However, a brief trial period of 7 to 14 days can work in their favour. Most customers don’t even complete the trial period if they don’t like the SaaS product. Hence, it becomes easier for sales teams to differentiate between high intent and low intent prospects. They can follow up only with prospects who stick to the product till the end of the trial period. This means a reduced SaaS sales cycle and significant savings in customer acquisition costs.
Also, when you are offering a trial package, it doesn’t have to be completely feature-packed. You can create a bundle of best and average features and offer it as a free trial. You can keep on adding and removing features depending on customers’ responses.
6. Invest in training the sales reps
B2B SaaS selling is different from regular sales, and hence, it is wise for sales teams to invest in training the reps. A B2B SaaS sales analytics and coaching platform like Salesken can help you in this process. It will help sales teams with the following:
- Salesken can coach sales reps and help them discover their strengths and weaknesses by analysing real-time conversations. This software has a built-in emotion detection engine that identifies customers’ intent and helps the reps personalise their sales pitches accordingly.
- Salesken’s sales coaching software comes with an automated performance feedback feature. This will help sales managers gain insights into sales reps' performance and help guide the reps with insightful feedback.
- This sales coaching software prepares your sales reps and makes them SaaS-ready. As a result, B2B sales reps become more productive and continue to close more sales deals.
Book a demo to explore further!
7. Prioritise value addition over everything else
Focusing on value addition can make a difference in B2B SaaS sales. If you can make the B2B buyers realise that your product can solve their problems, they will perceive your product as “valuable”.
And how do you generate value? By solving the customers’ problems.
Thorough research into easily available resources can help sales reps gain a lot of information about their target audience. Some quick sources to find information include their website, individual LinkedIn profiles of key decision-makers, and review platforms like Capterra, Trustpilot etc.
The information you collect from these platforms can help you understand the customer’s pain points, making it easier to find a solution. A little research can help B2B SaaS sales teams save time and money.
Once you develop a B2B SaaS solution, the next big challenge is to sell it. B2B SaaS sales are long and complicated and experienced and knowledgeable sales reps have higher chances of success. To recap, start with research, build and nurture relationships, align the marketing and sales teams and concentrate on a “pull” strategy (including content creation) as much as possible to master B2B SaaS sales.
As described, Salesken is a game-changer for B2B SaaS sales. Book a demo to explore further!
Frequently Asked Questions
Don’t forget to share this blog!
You might also like to see other resources
Want To See Salesken In Action?
See how Salesken can provide unparalleled insights into every customer interaction