2017 taught us a few good lessons for growing a SaaS company. For example, never ignore security update notifications if you don’t wanna cry; connect with the products your customers already use (Salesforce does it, Google does it and SaaS-providers shouldn’t lag behind). What emerging trends can boost your productivity and grow your sales in 2018?
Relying on microservices for security reasons
The architecture of big SaaS-products is vulnerable in the core: when you create a monolith service with lots of features, it’s a bigger target for cybercriminals. Detecting a malicious process is far more difficult in a large structure and fixing it requires more resources. More and more developers opt to use architecture that delegates some parts of a monolith service to microservices.
A microservice is a standalone app, not bound by any dependencies to the main product. It’s a small app with a small codebase doing one job. In a 2017 survey, 87% of respondents claimed that they already use or would consider taking a microservice approach for building their app. SaaS vendors admit that they can see the benefits of using microservices within 6-12 months of introducing them into their processes.
At PDFfiller we offer a full document management platform where users can edit PDF documents, electronically sign and send them out for signature, turn them into fillable web forms and more. Microservices help us keep all features up-to-date, assess and decrease risk and monitor efficiency.
Building integrations with market leaders
The era of underdog startups reinventing business is coming to an end. Big companies like Alphabet, Facebook, Apple, Amazon, and Microsoft notice smart solutions early and buy them. This is the reason seed funding has been down for two years in Silicon Valley. Thus the new strategy for small businesses in tech is to build a product that market giants would be interested in.
Salesforce bought Quip Productivity Suite last year for $750 million. In turn, Quip revealed its new platform for building partnerships through Quip Live Apps at Dreamforce 2017. The idea is that SaaS vendors solving particular issues for sales workflow could integrate with Quip and provide improved customer experience within a customer’s preferred iFrame.
Just like Quip, PDFfiller also joined the trend of integrating in 2017. Integrations with Microsoft Dynamics, Sharepoint, Office 365, Egnyte, Jira, Slack and Google Suite brought streamlined document workflow to customer devices, increasing PDFfiller’s market presence.
Blockchain technology and Generation Z
Marketing teams have to take into account that Generation Z (anyone born after 1996) has become ‘a decision-maker in the house’: Gen Z comprises 25% of the U.S. population and is predicted to make up 40% of American consumers by 2020. They are labeled as constantly addicted to screens, which is only half true as studies show that Gen Z dedicates (on average) up to 15.4 hours a week to their smartphones. Nevertheless, Gen Z’ers are more likely to start their own business than work for anyone else.
The rise of blockchain technology will provide more opportunities for consumers who didn’t have access to financial resources before, which is why it’s extremely popular among Gen Z. They can take on the risks of investing in cryptocurrencies and even raise funding for startups, enabling peer-to-peer cryptocurrency exchange, like Cointal.
In 2018, SaaS companies are tasked with figuring out how best to communicate their ideas to consumers on a 5-inch screen, who favor cryptocurrencies and value a good product over a good experience.