B2C SaaS Marketing – The Essential Guide for 2023
In 2021, the average number of SaaS apps used by organizations reached 110 software products. Seeing this is a 37% increase compared to 2020 numbers, it’s safe to say that SaaS is getting bigger by the day.
But the thing is, businesses are not the only entities investing in cloud-based applications. End-users are also becoming increasingly dependent on SaaS, so marketers also need to develop marketing strategies optimized for B2C.
In this article, we’ll discuss the essentials of B2C SaaS marketing. Moreover, we’ll explore strategies for reaching, engaging, and converting individual consumers who intend to use this type of software for personal purposes.
Let’s dive in.
Always Remember Your Target Audience
One of the first things you must remember about B2C SaaS marketing is that you’re not selling to professionals. Instead, your target audience consists of everyday people looking for solutions to efficiently solve their pain points.
This is an essential distinction because of the intrinsic differences between B2B and B2C audiences.
B2B clients have a deep understanding of their niche. They know precisely what they need in terms of solutions (sometimes even down to minute details). Moreover, they are likely to comprehend how the apps they need should work. Finally, they require software that can be used on a large scale by dozens, hundreds, and sometimes even thousands of users simultaneously.
End consumers, on the other hand, aren’t experts. They may know that they need a B2C SaaS solution, but their use case is most likely to be very specific and limited. Furthermore, they don’t have extensive industry insights. Nor do they use niche-specific jargon.
Take Google’s services, for example. Sure, more than 90% of people utilize Google as their primary search engine. However, most of them don’t know about the engine’s algorithm. They don’t understand SEO. And, they wouldn’t think twice to try to understand the backend processes that take place with every search they make.
With this in mind, when coming up with B2C SaaS marketing strategies, you have to constantly keep in mind that you’re, essentially, targeting amateurs. Always remember this as you come up with your messaging. Make sure that your language, value propositions, and visuals are optimized to appeal to everyday Joes.
This doesn’t mean you should skimp on the details. However, it does mean that you should do your best to use simple, generic language that explains your services in the most approachable way possible.
Building the “How it works” section
When putting together your How it works page, do your best to keep things short and sweet. Don’t overwhelm your website visitors with too much technical information, industry-specific jargon, or blocks of text that will immediately cause them to navigate to your competition’s websites.
Instead, aim for a high readability score with short sentences and paragraphs. Try to explain your services in three steps max. And, of course, use as many visuals and videos as you can as these exponentially boost understanding and information retention.
An excellent example of a B2C SaaS How it works section specifically put together for laymen comes from Ultimate Meal Plans. Instead of going on about calculating micro and macronutrients, meal planning strategies, or exotic cooking techniques, the brand’s homepage boils the entire process down to three steps. All end-consumers have to do is:
- Choose a meal plan that meets their needs.
- Buy groceries based on a weekly shopping list.
- Cook the food in under 15 minutes and enjoy their healthy meals.
Use Email Marketing to Combat Churn
One of the biggest challenges of B2C SaaS is that it has to deal with high churn rates.
According to Morphio, the average churn rate for B2C SaaS businesses is 7%. That’s 2% higher than B2B churn rates. And, sure, this may not seem like such an enormous number. Nonetheless, 7% of your customer base lost each month can quickly add up. Especially if it goes on for an entire year.
So, why do B2C SaaS brands see higher churn rates than their B2B counterparts?
Well, the thing is that businesses make investment decisions on a quarterly or annual basis. As they have to think up logical strategies that will get their organizations from A to B, they know that each time they switch software, they will have to deal with losses in productivity and profits.
End consumers don’t deal with this limitation. They are free to try out as many solutions as they wish (made even easier by the wide availability of long free trials) without even having to consider their losses.
Because of this, when developing marketing strategies for B2C SaaS customers, you have to understand that your main goal is not to make one sale.
Instead, you should heavily invest in customer retention and do your best to motivate your user base to come back month after month.
Targeting customers at risk
Email marketing can be a powerful weapon when doing this. It allows you to segment your user base and deliver content based on your top priorities regarding that audience segment.
For example, if you know that a portion of your customers is at risk – not using your product or not using it correctly – you can slot them into specific campaigns that deliver valuable knowledge and tips on how to get more out of your products.
Not only will consumers find these tips helpful, but they will also be reminded about (or introduced to) the possibilities that your B2C SaaS solution offers. And they will be much more likely to give it another go and extend their subscription.
Take Advantage of a Shorter Sales Cycle
Consumers take time going through the sales funnel. They say that, on average, it takes eight touches before a person converts into a buyer. And in the case of a B2B marketing funnel, this number is likely to be even higher.
According to Gartner, the B2B buying process is described as “complex” or “difficult” by as many as 77% of decision-makers.
With B2C SaaS products, however, you’re in a much better position.
Not only are end consumers more likely to exhibit impulse buying behavior (especially through social media where almost two-thirds of purchases are made without previous intention).
Moreover, end consumers don’t necessarily make shopping decisions based on rational thought. Instead, they often choose to support brands based on emotional connection, shared values, or convenience.
Because of this, the B2C SaaS sales cycle is much shorter, which you can take advantage of in several ways.
The B2C sales cycle
- When targeting end consumers, feel free to use more aggressive sales methods than you would with B2B clients. Product-based content marketing, like that employed by Wix, is an excellent chance to introduce your target audience to novel concepts and present the solutions you offer.
- Convenience will play a crucial part in convincing B2C buyers to convert. So, when designing your website, you will have to ensure that your CTAs are fully optimized for conversions, with high visibility and sales-focused language. LastPass does both spectacularly, with a bright red “Get LastPass Free” message that shows up on every single page of the brand’s website, inviting B2C SaaS users to give the solution a go.
- Don’t forget to use email to your advantage. With free trial users, you can use emails to deliver sales-focused messages, which will encourage your B2C audience to become paying customers of your brand. You’ll get even better results if you combine educational content with sales-focused language, as studies show that consumers are 131% more likely to convert after having consumed content that teaches them how to do something new.
Appeal to Consumer Emotions
B2C SaaS customers don’t just think about features and benefits when choosing what software to purchase. In fact, according to data from December 2021, consumers consider several factors before shopping with a retailer:
- 53% want to support companies with strong values.
- 48% find it essential for brands to support local communities.
- 50% wish to see organizations prioritize staff wellbeing.
- 55% trust brands that help them make healthier lifestyle choices.
- 51% look for transparency.
- 47% are trying to be eco-friendly when buying products.
Based on these numbers, it’s easy to conclude that the key to converting B2C SaaS customers is to take a deep dive into constructing marketing messages that are likely to resonate with your target audience.
Resonate with your B2C SaaS target audience
For example, Skillcrush does it splendidly by highlighting its commitment to social justice issues. This brand’s passion for inclusivity is not just reflected in its value proposition. It’s also evident in its content marketing, social media, and even the social proof the company chooses to display on its homepage.
Of course, you can also do this with a more emotion-based approach.
One option would be to go for that happy-go-lucky Coca-Cola vibe and try to create a positive emotional connection between your audience and your brand. But, the truth is, you can also leave a strong impression by directly addressing your potential customers’ negative emotions and pain points. In that case, your aim will be to ensure that they remember your B2C SaaS brand as the best solution.
Dropbox, for example, invites consumers to “keep life organized.” Pocket encourages its users to “get right to the good stuff.” And Noisli promises to help audiences “mask annoying noises in order to keep [them] sane, improve [their] focus, and boost [their] productivity.”
All these value propositions are emotion-based – they address common consumer frustrations and offer solutions. And they work. That’s not necessarily because the software in question is the best of its kind but because the marketing messages appeal to people’s emotions. They’re helping consumers make immediate decisions and frame the cost of the products they’re considering as solutions instead of expenses.
Make Your Social Proof Relatable
The thing about modern-day consumers is that they don’t always trust branded messages. In fact, according to Inc., as many as 96% of people don’t trust advertising.
Instead, when searching for information about products or services, they prefer to seek recommendations from peers, influencers, and trusted third-party review sites.
With this in mind, when modeling your B2C SaaS marketing strategy, it’s not a bad idea to look for ways to make your social proof more relatable.
Not only will hearing from their peers make your target audience more likely to convert. Moreover, it will help make your brand relatable, trustworthy, and appealing to more people.
An excellent example of a brand ensuring that its social proof comes from the same group of people it’s trying to target comes from Scott’s Cheap Flights.
Essentially, the brand could have gone the easy way and embedded Trustpilot, TripAdvisor, or Google reviews on its site. But instead of going this standard way, the brand chose to reach out to its satisfied customers and ask for relatable feedback.
Not only are the stories rich with detail (conveniently providing info about how much the people saved by using the service). They also describe consumers’ emotions during their holidays and showcase real vacation photos. This is a great way to appeal to B2C buyers. Especially since they consider more than just numbers and stats when deciding what SaaS products to invest in.
Acknowledge and Discuss Risk Openly
Finally, as you look for essential B2C SaaS marketing strategies, remember that addressing possible risks is more important than ever. After all, the average cart abandonment rate is 69.82% as of November 2021.
The thing is, consumers are more careful than ever about the way they spend their money.
In part, this is due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which made people reduce their spending, especially on items that could be classified as luxuries. But being cost-conscious is not the only reason buyers back down from converting.
In 2023, users might fail to check out for several reasons. In addition to being cost-conscious, they also don’t want to be locked into subscriptions, are concerned about data privacy, are unwilling to give over their credit card details, or are uncertain about dealing with a virtual company instead of a real person.
These concerns become even more prominent when you’re dealing with a risk-averse target audience.
For this reason, it’s not a bad idea to be open about acknowledging and discussing the risks associated with your B2C SaaS products. Identify the reservations your audience holds and try to address them on your website.
Examples of discussing common risks
For an excellent example of how you might do this, check out the Bay Alarm Medical website. It discusses common risks right on the homepage, with several sections dedicated to calming consumers’ minds about investing in the product:
- The brand offers a trial period that goes on for 30 days.
- The CTA buttons invite web visitors to try the service risk-free, which means that anyone can get a full refund if they don’t enjoy the products.
- The brand highlights that it has been around for over 70 years, helping seniors with health and independence.
- Customers are invited to stay in touch via phone or chat, both of which are convenient for the brand’s target audience.
- The homepage links to Bay Alarm Medical’s Code of Ethics, which points out the brand’s commitment to protecting the elderly from scams and financial fraud.
Source: Bay Alarm Medical
Of course, you don’t have to go into this much detail on your B2C SaaS website.
You can also take inspiration from Google. This B2C SaaS brand put together a concise section that discusses risks, addressing encryption, personalization, spam, malware, phishing, and confidential email options.
Are You Ready to Tackle B2C SaaS Marketing?
We’ve gone through the essentials of targeting B2C SaaS users. As you can see, there’s plenty you can do to help your product appeal to everyday people.
Now it’s time for you to start strategizing.
Optimizing your website copy, your brand voice and tone, and the ways in which you deliver your marketing messages will take you a long time.