The best thing you can do to improve SaaS demo conversions

By Marc McDougall

You’re staring at your SaaS product landing page, and you’re thinking: what is wrong with you?  You’re also getting bombarded by a sea of consultants spouting fancy new tools to improve conversions, and you’re feeling a bit overwhelmed.

I’m a big fan of first principles, so when you’re feeling like there’s too much to do, start with this: 

  1. Go talk to your customers, and
  2. Tighten up your messaging to suit their needs.

(…and if you can only do one, do the first one.)

Talking to customers: radical, right?

I know telling businesses to talk to their customers is a bit of a meme now, but it’s just so important and I have to hammer it home.

Worried about what to say? Just get on the phone and have a natural conversation about the person on the other side and their needs.

Here’s some back-of-the-napkin guidelines:

  • Don’t “lead the witness” with questions that clearly have some sort of implication in them (i.e. “why do you just LOVE Stripe?”).
  • You should be listening for the vast majority of the call.
  • Start with “what problem were you experiencing that caused you to look for a product like ours?”, and then just keep digging from there.
    • Another good one is “what alternatives did you consider?  What made you ultimately decide to go with our product?”
  • The goal is to get to the pain that they were experiencing, and get them to explain that to you in their own natural language.

Bonus points if you learn more about what other problems you can solve for them in the meantime.

Now, for that pesky messaging…

This can be as simple as changing the primary <h1> on your homepage from:

Enabling strategic partnerships by developing deeper connections with industry partners through regular content drips.

To something much more clear:

We help businesses stay top-of-mind with their customers by making it easy for them to send regular follow-up emails.

See how the second one here is much more straight-to-the-point?

It would be hard for anyone hitting your homepage to not know what problem you solve.   This allows people to self-select and not fall out of the funnel early because they don’t understand what you do (or how you’re different).

It’s also free of corporate speak, which causes an involuntary allergic reaction in web-savvy site visitors these days. 😉

Here’s a really good example from Zenefits:

Zenefits, with their very clear positioning statement explaining that they are an HR software company.
I’m glowing with pride over here — it’s just so…damn…clear!

Oh, and whenever you find yourself writing anything longer than a single sentence, check yourself.  When was the last time you read more than a single sentence on the internet (excluding blog posts, of course)?  That’s right: never!

If you want to see a measurable increase in conversions to your SaaS product in the shortest time period, just get on the phone with a customer, and ask them why they use your service.  Try to get a feel for the pain they were experiencing, and then just steal their words and use that as your positioning statement.

Getting the messaging right is one of those high-impact things that I see SaaS products do poorly all the time.

Set yourself apart from your competition and make your messaging clear.