Recently I was having a conversation with an entrepreneur about the most common characteristics of successful SaaS products. Thinking about some of the largest SaaS companies, including, NetSuite, HubSpot, MailChimp, WorkDay, and Zendesk, there are a number of similar product attributes:

  • Workflow System – End-users use the app on a daily basis and “live” in the product to do their job. Daily active users are key.
  • Clear ROI – The product’s value is inextricably tied to a return on investment making it a must-have and not a nice-to-have.
  • Multiple Markets – The product is applicable to a wide range of companies in multiple markets. Typically, it starts out more niche, gains traction, and then expands into adjacent markets.
  • Account Expansion – Upsells and account expansion outweigh churn. Product value grows as usage grows (e.g. more seats/users, more transactions, etc.).

The most successful SaaS products have these four characteristics. When evaluating product ideas, consider these attributes and assess the potential.

What else? What are some more characteristics of successful SaaS products?