India works in a completely different manner when it comes to software products – nobody wants to pay for a product that is intangible.
Added to that, in the real-estate sector, technology is treated as a commodity. Although its value is understood, the owners expect it to improve their bottom line. Client acquisition for a SaaS (Software as a Service) product is quite easily done by offering a discounted price or free trial, but sustaining on a SaaS model is where it gets difficult. The owners will tend to move towards perpetual licensing and try to own the product for a lifetime.
Here are some of our learnings over the course of the 9 months since we launched Sell.Do at Amura:
Our design principle is KISS – Keep it simple, stupid
But, however simple to try to keep the user interface (UI), a marketing & sales automation platform tied in with a CRM is bound to have multiple functions and hence a complex UI. However, we divided the functionality and user interface based on a user’s role and usage pattern. We tracked the behaviour of users and their typical usage patterns in the beta version and made sure that the usability was not compromised by the complex functionality.
But then, if its not just UI and features, what is it that makes a SaaS product successful in India?
THE SUPPORT SHOULD NOT ONLY BE TECHNICAL BUT ALSO PROVIDE BUSINESS CONSULTING THAT BRINGS VALUE AND TANGIBLE BENEFITS TO THE CLIENT.
- Our 5 year experience and expertise in the industry came in handy when we started building Sell.Do. We knew exactly what the pain points of the real estate industry are, and Sell.Do was built to alleviate those pain points.
- When a new client is acquired, we focus on understanding their current sales processes & configure the workflows to incorporate the existing processes while also improving them.
- We believe support should not be just technical support (solving product related queries) but needs to extend to improving the efficiency of the business. Our entire support team is trained not only in the technical aspects of the product but also in improving business processes.
- On-site training and meetings in the initial days of the client setup are very important – they help establish a relationship and build confidence, which is critical in India.
- Phone support in India is essential. Clients expect all their calls to be answered at all times. They want to be acknowledged, so having good support in place through all 7 days is a must.
Most importantly, one must remember that you are not just selling software but helping clients improve their bottom line.
A software that cannot increase the bottom line is bound to be treated as a commodity.
Credits: Ketan Sabnis