How To Come Up With Million Dollar SaaS Ideas

Denis Shatalin
Founder of SaaS Camp
Ideas for SaaS products are all around you. All you need to do is look and listen. The problem is that most people don’t know how to come up with good ideas, or they get so bogged down in the details that they never actually get anything done.

In this article, I'm going to show you how to come up with great SaaS product ideas, and share some ideas that I've come up with recently to get you thinking about the possibilities out there.

So, let’s get started!

What Is SaaS?

SaaS —or Software as a Service—is a software delivery model where software offered by the provider on the web. Customers can access and use the software through a client (usually a web browser), while the provider manages the infrastructure and security.

SaaS is one of three main categories of cloud computing, alongside Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) and Platform as a Service (PaaS).
What is the most typical SaaS business model? These products usually adopt a subscription pricing model, where customers pay monthly (or annually) for the right to use the product.
This reduces the upfront cost for the user and provides the developer with a predictable, recurring revenue stream.
Need some help developing your SaaS strategy? Apply to SaaS Camp Accelerator and learn the secrets behind what it takes to dominate your B2B SaaS market!

Why Is SaaS So Great as a Start-Up idea?

One of the many great things about SaaS as a starting point for ideas is that it has become the go-to scalable delivery model for a wide range of software varieties. Here are some of its key benefits as a business model:

  • Scalable:
Once you hit product-market fit, SaaS is an extremely scalable business model that can help you reach a global market from the comfort of your (home) office. What’s not to love?

  • Subscription-based business:
SaaS platforms can be accessed online and are purchased through subscriptions or a credit-based recurring payment model. This means that you can tweak the pricing, include new features for upselling, and derive real-time insights from the way customers purchase your services. This allows you to have regular recurring revenue and grow a sustainable business from that.

  • Great opportunities to increase average order value (AOV):
This is the average amount of money you get from each customer. As SaaS is very easily scalable with its online-based business model, you can introduce new features or ways to sell your different ones, allowing you to increase revenue in very accessible ways, as opposed to, say, a D2C business model, which relies on physical products to increase revenue growth.

  • Online:
As people access your platform online, you can easily introduce updates without forcing your users to download the latest versions.

  • No downloading needed:
Let’s face it, a ton of today’s users are put off by having to download software programs. With SaaS platforms, all they need to do is to sign up, subscribe and pay to use your product. Significantly less friction than having to install programs.

  • More agile:
All of the aspects above lend to SaaS businesses being more agile than other types of businesses. As a SaaS founder, you can more effectively react to market changes and course correct to exploit more opportunities for growth or prevent stagnation.

  • Enjoy an ecosystem of products that provide growth insights:
From Churnkey to June, there is a plethora of SaaS tools online that can provide extremely useful insights to help you grow as a business. You won’t have access to these tools with a software business you’d need to download.

Different Types of SaaS

Before we explore some of the best SaaS ideas for your startup to try, let’s first discuss some of the common types of SaaS products.
  • Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Software:
Helps sales teams track leads and manage customer data.

  • Project Management Software:
Helps teams plan, track, and collaborate on projects.

  • Marketing Automation Software:
Helps marketing teams automate tasks like email marketing, social media campaigns, and lead nurturing.

  • Human Resources (HR) Software:
Helps HR teams manage employee data, onboarding, and performance.

  • Finance Software:
Helps finance teams manage accounting, invoicing, and expenses.

  • Customer Support Software:
Helps customer support teams track tickets, resolve issues, and measure satisfaction.

  • Data Analytics Software:
Helps businesses collect and analyze data to make better decisions.

These are just a few examples of the many different types of SaaS products available. If you can think of a task that needs to be done in your business, chances are there’s a SaaS product that can help.

Within each of these categories, there are tons of opportunities niche SaaS products and ideas that solve niche problems—you just need to know how to identify them!

So, before we dive into a few of the SaaS product and start-up ideas we've come up with, let's discuss a few tried and true methods for coming up with your own ideas.

B2B vs B2C: Who should I build my SaaS Product for?

You’ll notice that a lot of these categories are B2B SaaS products. Many companies have found success in providing B2C products, however, software products have a much higher growth potential when targeting business customers.

Why? B2B products are chosen because they create value for a business, and so customers are more willing to spend for a paid product. B2C customers tend to either opt for free products or choose to spend less on software.

How To Come Up With SaaS Product Ideas

SaaS products—like software products in general—can only be successful when they solve problems. Solving problems doesn't guarantee success, but it's a requirement nonetheless.

With that in mind, the best way to come up with great scalable SaaS product ideas is by actively seeking out problems and thinking of solutions. These solutions are potential products—assuming you have the skills and resources necessary to build them.

So, how do you seek out problems?

There isn't a single, correct way to go about it. However, it helps to be systematic. That's why we've come up with three methods for identifying opportunities and unsolved problems in any industry.

1) Listen To The Market

Reviewers and review aggregators are your best friend when seeking out problems with a piece of software. Not only do they provide valuable insights about what people want and don't want from a product, but they also tend to be brutally honest.

There are tons of trustworthy review sites that feature SaaS products to choose from, including:

I recommend choosing a niche you'd like to explore (e.g., collaboration software) and having a look at a few of the most popular SaaS products that show up (e.g., Microsoft Teams). You'll find that while most popular products are highly-rated, they're not perfect.

Take Microsoft Teams, for example. The software scores an impressive
4.4/5 on Capterra, but many reviews still lodge fairly significant complaints about synching issues, missed notifications, and server lag. These are all problems a smart competitor will solve.

Tip: You don't need to jump straight to the one-star reviews to identify problems! In fact, you might be better off searching through the two- to four-star range. These reviews tend to be more balanced in their characterizations of strengths and weaknesses.

2) Read Industry News and Analysis

Staying up-to-date with your industry and being aware of emerging SaaS trends is important for a number of reasons, but it also provides an opportunity to identify problems that need solving.

When reading industry news, look for articles that discuss unsolved problems or new regulations or challenges that businesses in an industry will face. These can be potential starting points for new SaaS products.

Environmental regulation is a great example of this. The United Kingdom is one of many countries that has recently begun mandating that certain companies produce annual reports on their environmental impacts (i.e., greenhouse gas emissions, energy consumption, etc.).

These reports mean manual tracking and analysis for businesses who currently lack the software to automate the process. A SaaS product that solves this problem is poised for success.

3) Survey Your Target Market

This one is pretty self-explanatory. If you want to know what people want, ask them! However, it's important to keep a few things in mind when surveying your target market:

  1. Make sure that your survey questions are clear and concise.
  2. Avoid leading questions—these will skew your results.
  3. Offer an incentive for taking the survey (e.g., a discount on your eventual product).
  4. Make sure you actually listen to the feedback.
Who you survey will depend on the industry you're looking to enter with your product. If you have industry connections, utilizing your network has the highest chance of success. If you don't, sending out well-written cold-emails isn't a bad approach.

As a bonus, this method as functions as an extremely early marketing tactic for your product. Everyone you contact is a potential lead down the line!

10 Great SaaS Product Ideas To Get You Thinking

Alright, now it's time for the fun stuff—SaaS product ideas to get you thinking about ideas of your own! I've divided the list of product ideas into three categories based on the method I use to generate them.

A Recruitment Tool

There are a number of recruitment tools on the market, but most of them focus on job seekers rather than businesses. A SaaS solution that helps businesses find the best candidates for open positions would be a valuable addition to the market.

This tool could provide features such as:

  • Job Posting Management
  • Candidate Screening
  • Interview Scheduling
  • Offer Management
  • Onboarding
A recruitment tool would save businesses time and money by streamlining the process of finding and hiring new employees.

An AI-Powered Transcription Service

Transcribing audio recordings is a time-consuming and error-prone task—but it's one that's necessary for many businesses. A transcription service that utilizes AI to automate the transcription process would be a valuable addition to the market.

There are a number of potential applications for this type of product, including:

  • Company meeting transcripts
  • Removing filler noises
  • Webinar transcripts
  • Podcast transcripts
  • Customer service call transcripts
An AI-powered transcription service would save businesses time and money by automating a task that's currently done manually.

Sonix is a great example of a transcription SaaS project - using an in-browser editor to help businesses convert their video and audio to text.

This tool has found an interesting use case in automated subtitling, as this task can take up so much time for businesses and content creators. Providing subtitles is an important step for making videos accessible, however.

Identifying an essential task that can be automated easily using AI is a great technique to find the right SaaS business model!

A Social Media Listening Tool

Social media is a necessary part of marketing for many businesses, but it can be time-consuming to do properly.

A social listening tool is a brilliant SaaS software idea for helping businesses make the most of their social media platforms. It empowers creators to craft great content that resonates with their target audience based on what’s being shared by their target customers, whether they’d be on Twitter or TikTok. This could be kind of like Ahrefs, but for social media.

There are a few tools that do this currently on the market. However, a quick scan of their reviews reveals that missed there is a lack of social listening tool that provides content insights. A SaaS program that solves this problem while providing a solid functionality would be a valuable addition to the market.

An Event Planning Tool

Event planning is a complex process that often requires multiple software programs to manage all the details. A SaaS solution that brings all the event planning tools into one place would be a valuable addition to the market.

This tool could provide features such as:

  • Event Registration
  • Ticketing
  • Venue Booking
  • Catering Management
  • Event Marketing

Idloom Events is a key player in this industry - offering some great tools for event planning and registration.

This tool is a great example of an end-to-end management tool in a specific sector. Event organisers can use Idloom to make an event website, manage registrations and even handle check-ins through QR codes.

A great unique selling point is integrating payments into your SaaS tool. The financial side of event planning is often the most difficult aspect. Adding the ability to take payments and generate financial reports is a brilliant feature to add to an event planning tool.

A Property Management Tool

Real estate investment is on the rise, and that means a growing market of multi-location property owners in need of a tool to help them stay organized.

A SaaS property management tool might provide features such as:

  • Rental Listing Management
  • Tenant Screening
  • Maintenance Request Management
  • Lease Management
  • Tax Information
This type of tool would save property owners time and money by keeping all their information in one place and automating many of the tasks associated with property management.

A Social Media Analytics Tool

At the moment, social media analysis usually means switching back and forth between every platform your business is active on. A SaaS solution that brings all of your social media analytics into one place would be a valuable addition to the market.

In addition to general social media analytics (i.e., engagement, reach, etc.), this tool could also provide insights such as:

  • Most popular times for posting
  • Best-performing content
  • Demographics of your followers

A SaaS social media analytics tool would save businesses time and money by providing them with the data they need to make informed decisions about their social media strategy.

Flick is a brilliant example of a successful tool in this category. This social media analytics tool helps Instagram users identify key trends, analyze their hashtags and find the best time to post!

What does Flick do well? This SaaS business uses its blog and knowledge base to provide value to its users.

This marketing strategy is known as thought leadership, where a SaaS provider publishes blog posts and articles sharing actionable insights, tips and more.

The idea is to establish the brand as a reputable voice within the industry, help solve user problems and convert readers into customers through a smart call-to-action (CTA).

Want to learn more about SaaS marketing? Read my full guide on how to develop an actionable SaaS marketing plan.

An Environmental Impact Tool

As I mentioned earlier, environmental compliance software is a SaaS niche that's poised to explode in the coming years. Companies - both large and small - will find themselves in need of a tool that helps them stay on track when it comes to regulatory compliance.

A SaaS solution that tracks environmental targets (e.g., greenhouse gas emissions), alerts when targets are likely to be missed, and automatically compiles reports will be able to take advantage of this emerging market.

Hopefully, this list of SaaS product ideas has inspired you to start thinking about potential products of your own!

What is the best SaaS product to build? That largely depends on your expertise, experience and whether there’s a target audience for the ideas you’re interested in! Building and scaling a SaaS project is as much a passion project as it is a business.

Remember, the best way to come up with a great idea is to combine insights from multiple sources. Review sites, industry news, and surveys are all great places to start. But, also focus on industries and market sectors you’re passionate about and understand.

This will help you identify product-market fit as quickly as possible, and ensure you’re working on a SaaS project that adds value for your customers.

A Remote Employee Engagement Platform

With the rise of remote and hybrid working models, businesses have struggled to engage their team members who work remotely. It’s difficult to gauge the mood of your employees, and many workers miss the personal touch of working in an office.
That’s why a remote employee engagement tool could be a great idea for your next SaaS startup.

What sort of features could you build into an engagement app?

  • Managers can survey their team members, asking about their welfare, mood and ideas for improvement.
  • Teams can celebrate each other’s achievements and give their colleagues kudos.
  • Provide businesses with a top-down view of their teams’ progress, well-being and overall mood. This can help shape business decisions to identify gaps in their remote/hybrid model.

Nailted demonstrates this idea quite well, allowing managers to poll engagement, mood and performance.

Team members can show their appreciation for colleagues using ‘Claps’ and provide anonymous reviews and feedback.

It’s important that your tool integrates well with the platforms that businesses are already using. Nailted can link with a company’s Slack to push surveys and display ‘Claps’.

Remember, business owners won’t change their workflow drastically to accommodate your product. Build integrations into your SaaS tool to make your product work well with pre-existing workflows.

A Product Roadmap Tool

An important aspect of building SaaS products is incorporating user feedback into your software design. Early adopters offer businesses rich insights on how to improve products and what features need to be added.

Business owners should publish their product roadmaps, so their loyal customers will know what to expect from their SaaS product. This gives them an opportunity to critique any planned direction.

Given how important customer feedback is in agile software development, SaaS developers will appreciate any tool that makes this process easier. Why not build a product roadmap publisher?

A roadmap tool should:

  • Allow developers to present their product roadmap in a variety of intuitive styles.
  • Facilitate customer feedback collection - allowing users to comment and critique each stage of a roadmap.
  • Helps teams prioritize features based on feedback and available resources.

Roadmunk is a leading SaaS provider in this market sector. This tool has focused on delivering a beautiful, functional user interface - presenting businesses with “boardroom-ready” roadmaps.

Roadmunk demonstrates how important UI/UX design is in the SaaS product development process. If your product doesn’t look good and function well, your customers won’t enjoy using it!

A Proximity Marketing Tool

As pandemic restrictions are slowly being lifted, more and more people are returning to retail locations for their shopping.

Proximity marketing is a location-based marketing tactic that uses technology (e.g., beacons, GPS, etc.) to target consumers with personalized messages and coupons when they're near a retail location.

This is an especially valuable tool for small businesses who may not have the budget for more traditional forms of marketing, including:

  • Bars
  • Hotels
  • Restaurants
  • Boutiques
  • Corner Shops
A SaaS platform that provides proximity marketing services would be a valuable addition to the market.

Wrapping Up

When it comes to developing and launching your product, I’m here to help. I provide guidance and support throughout every step of the process — from ideation to marketing and sales.

If you’re looking for a coach rather than a course, you’re in the right place. Apply to my SaaS Camp accelerator today to learn more about how we can scale your startup!
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✋ Hey, it's Denis! Thanks for reading :) Want help with your startup or to have a chat? Just reach out to me on Twitter, Email or LinkedIn.