One of the biggest considerations in the early days of a new Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) product is the must-have vs nice-to-have question. A must-have product fundamentally alters the way work gets done — either changing existing processes to be 10x better or unlocking new value that wasn’t previously achievable — and once used, companies will never go back. A nice-to-have product provides some value — perhaps being twice as good as doing it by hand or with spreadsheets — yet isn’t valuable enough to compel a critical mass of adopters, and won’t be successful.
Here are a few thoughts on must-have vs nice-to-have SaaS products:
- Every spreadsheet is another SaaS app, but every SaaS app isn’t a must-have
- Apps that unequivocally help companies make more money, like marketing automation, are a must-have
- Apps that improve productivity must be 10x better than the manual process, not 2x, which results in a nice-to-have
- Note: this is for products in new categories and greenfield opportunities, not new products in existing categories
As an entrepreneur, the next time you evaluate an opportunity, consider the must-have vs nice-to-have question — it’s a big one.
What else? What are some more thoughts on must-have vs nice-to-have SaaS products?