Ankur Parashar
Articles by Ankur Parashar

Articles by Ankur Parashar

A Cofounder's guide to early stage SAAS Startup Growth

A Cofounder's guide to early stage SAAS Startup Growth

Ankur Parashar's photo
Ankur Parashar
·Nov 22, 2022·

3 min read

Technology, Sales and Hiring are three pillars for any Startup and weakness in any pillar can impact on overall structure you are going to build. Back in 2018 we started a Bootstrapped B2B startup for the purpose of optimising the Field Operations FieldCircle. It has been a wonderful, brutal, hardworking journey with full swings of high and lows. I would be sharing my key learnings here which I learned over the years, key is to always ask questions to yourself before you make big decisions.

Who is your Primary Customer:: Identifying your customer is very important, without proper categorisation you will consider every lead as your Customer, also it won't allow you to focus on solving a specific problem. User behaviour of B2B is entirely different than B2C, B2B product takes time in Customer acquisition but stickiness is also longer.

What is your Go to Market(MVP):: Founders want to serve a full plate of features, they have a strong belief that more features will attract the Customers. Working on more features doesn't allow you to focus on your niche of your product and you will keep adding features and instead of building MVP you will end up with a full software which may or may not be needed in the market.

Is it Product Market Fit:: A lot of Founders are willing to target each segment, their excitement and willingness to make rockets from day one sometimes lead to this mistake. Remember, Customers aren't just buying another software they want a very niche product which can solve their specific problem. Don't include every idea of yours in the product just because you have a strong feeling that it is necessary, have a proper mechanism to include any idea in your product. RICE score is a very good way of adding any new feature in your product.

What's the Budget: Remember if you are building MVP without any budget and timeline, you will keep building and iterating based on your ideas or sometimes comparison with other Competitors will lead to over expenditure, remember real feedback only comes from potential Customers.

Are you Investing properly in Trials: Thinking of charging customers from one day just because you have spent a lot of your time, energy and wealth is not always realistic, better approach would be to spend a lot of time in the trial period, accumulate customers' feedback, and understand user behaviour to Improve your product and win their trust.

Can I make Customer Onboarding easier:: As your product gets matured trust your tech team and automate the Customer Onboarding in a minimum number of steps. Your objective should be to make your software super-easy for customers so that they can start using it within a few minutes.

How to handle Customer Success: While you are investing your time in trial period at the same time it is important to get their feedback and win their trust. Every time Customer asks a question about how to use feature-X because he wasn't unable to understand it himself, consider that as an area of Improvement to improve your product UX.

Am I Own everything:: While you are building your Product and Solving for X it doesn't mean you can't take outside help, use every tool which can maximise you and your team's productivity.

Am I using all channels: Your friends, family and colleagues from the previous organisation are your primary network of distribution. Ask them to use and distribute products but don't expect much in return except the initial first few days they will be pulling you legs and giving your only few if and buts.

We are in our fifth year and are still learning and asking questions to ourselves to improvise, grow and scale. Please feel free to share your comments.

 
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