You have done the hard work of getting the word out.
Visitors arrive at your landing page, understand how your product can help them. They decide to sign up and give your product a try.
If you have done your job well, your landing page also filters out people who don't need your product.
You look at the numbers, and see that users don't convert. Whether you offer a free trial or not, users just don't come back. It doesn't get more frustrating!
Converting users to paying customers is one the toughest problems SaaS founders face. I have personally spent months tweaking and optimising the onboarding experience on my last SaaS product, Sorted. We eventually managed to increase our conversion rate by 2.5x
Here are 4 tactics that worked for us and will hopefully will work for you.
Guide your users on the shortest path to your key benefit
Follow the users that DID subscribe to your product. They are your biggest asset. Do everything you can to talk to them. You can offer them a gift card for their time. Once you get them on a call, ask them why they subscribed to your product. After 5 interviews you will have a really good idea.
In our product we helped freelancers to take care of their taxes. Our key benefit was making taxes extremely easy. Once users created their first invoice or uploaded their first expense, they were sold. We optimised the heck out of getting them to do that. We prefilled existing information, provided sample data, and made sure we have a short and clear sequence of call to actions to guide them.
Take the time to iterate and figure it out. There is hardly anything more important in a SaaS product. Go ahead, reach out to your paying customers and ask them to schedule a call.
Find out if your users are giving up because of bad user experience
Whether these are just technical issues or confused users that don't know what to do next, usually it will be very easy to spot and also easy to fix.
Setup an email sequence to educate your users about the problem, not your solution
You may be asking yourself whether email actually works. We often delete or ignore emails from other SaaS services, so why would anyone read our emails?
It may sound counterintuitive, but email actually WORKS, especially during onboarding.
Users that recently signed up to your service are trying to find a solution to their problem. They are in research mode. They are learning about the problem. You should help them!
In our product, beginner freelancers were really confused about taxes. They didn't know how to register with the government, when they could start working and which expenses are deductible. We educated them about that. We got over 60% open rates and over 30% click rates back to our app.
Encourage your users to talk with you
Some people will just drop off if they don't understand your product. Surprisingly, many would reach out if they think you may be solving a big problem for them.
Some prefer written communication via chat or email, and others prefer talking to a human. They need to hear a human on the other side to feel safe.
You should offer BOTH, especially early on. It may seem unscalable, but it really isn't such a big of a deal. You don't need to be always available. We answered messages twice a day and saved one afternoon a week for quick 15-min onboarding calls. You don't need more than that.
You will learn a ton. When a question came up 3 times or more, we added a landing page or an FAQ section to address it. We also noticed high conversion rates, above 50%, for users that talked to us during the onboarding phase. They felt much safer after the call.
If you are worried that these users will take a ton of your time, don't be. I can assure you that most users will never need another touchpoint after the onboarding phase. Unless they are facing some technical issues.
So go ahead, setup Intercom or Crisp for written communication and Calendly or SavvyCal for scheduling customer calls. And encourage your visitors to reach out wherever you can. On your landing page, throughout the onboarding experience and inside your product. You won't regret it!
Want to share your experience with getting users to their "a-ha" moment? Feel free to start a conversation on Twitter @nirshub