Being a leader in a SaaS business, you are probably aware that service-oriented relationships are critical for developing customer loyalty, keeping hold of existing customers, and producing healthy profits. You will also understand that, when it comes to providing outstanding service, you need to have exceptional systems in place to support your business.
Your billing system is the central point of these systems. It supports your SaaS organization, ensures smooth interactions with customers during transactions, and drives recurring revenue. Simply put, your billing platform is responsible for the capital in your business. For this reason alone, it is imperative to find a billing solution that works for your SaaS organization.
The billing sector, like every other industry, has an abundance of vendors with solutions to assist growing businesses. But, what should you look for in a vendor offering SaaS billing platforms? Here are a few things worth considering about your potential vendor’s solution: The ideal billing platform for your SaaS organization will be agile, analytical, and automated across your business’s core operations. What do these three A’s mean in practice?
To give your customers what they want, you need an analytical system that can provide data on customer metrics, and help you take actions that increase your revenue.
Analyzing your customers’ behavior will provide incredible insights into what they want and don’t want from your business. Having a billing system that collects and analyses customer data will allow you to gain these insights.
To gain the data granularity required for you to achieve valuable customer insights, usage-based models need to be incorporated into your billing plan. Data collected from basic subscriptions or one-off purchases will be of little value. Around 53% of companies with usage-based billing use collected customer insights to improve customer relations, according to a Forrester survey compiled recently.
Implementing new service plans and pricing structures quickly, is a struggle for around 32% of businesses, according to an MGI report. The same data indicated that 56% would like to make changes in less than four weeks. Only 29% of businesses stated that they could achieve them in less than four weeks.
Does time to market matter? It most certainly does. Customers have plenty of SaaS options available to them, so if one supplier is unable or unwilling to meet their requirements, they will find a vendor that can. Agility across all aspects of your organization gives you the capability to respond to changing market conditions quickly.
For traditional billing systems to respond to changes in the market, it takes a considerable amount of time to integrate these changes, often months and sometimes years, depending on the change’s nature. There is also likely to be a requirement for additional resources to alter prices, offerings, and workflows.
The result? Missed opportunities, and frustrated customers. Agile billing platforms are designed to integrate change quickly, easily, and without the need to call upon expensive billing specialists. You can anticipate your customers’ needs, keeping them satisfied and willing to buy again.
We have already written in great depth about the power of automated billing, so here is the elevator pitch. The chances of human error and time-wasting increase with the number of manual processes involved in the system.
A McKinsey study found that 60% of B2B transactions involved manual interventions, each adding between fifteen and twenty minutes to the process duration. This study is backed up by a recent MGI report finding that 42% of businesses have some level of revenue leakage and 59% experience friction with customers over billing disputes.
Using an automated billing system reduces the risks associated with manual processes, giving the customer a better experience, reducing churn, and boosting revenue. Your legacy billing platform may provide automated models at a basic level, and they cannot deal with the complexity of newer billing models.
SaaS requires complex billing models, the type that keeps customers returning. It needs to be automated across all critical processes, from revenue reporting to changes in customer lifecycles.
Finding a suitable replacement billing system can be challenging for a SaaS company in a highly competitive and ever-changing business environment. Focusing on the three A’s will steer you to the right solution for your company.
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