The competition in the SaaS market is extremely high right now, with new products coming up every day. With the increased role of remote work in the global economy, the growth rate is expected to increase as well. In such circumstances, developers need to really make their product stand out among the others to become financially successful. One of the crucial elements of achieving that goal is the right product design.
Regardless of how many cool features a product has and how useful they are, if a product looks and feels average, chances of success are slim. Good looks sell. In this article, we’re going to figure out what essential elements the product’s design must have in order to get the attention of customers. All of these elements need to be thought out in advance so that the custom SaaS software development process goes smoothly and reaches the desired result.
But first, let’s get some basic definitions out of the way.
What is Saas product design?
When designing any product, it would be wise to keep its main principles in mind. For a SaaS product, it would mean providing the final customer with the best user experience and the most comprehensive user interface possible. Therefore, designing a SaaS product is the process of establishing the following:
- Maximal intuitiveness and usability of the SaaS UI design
- Relatively low costs of development
- Usage of cloud computing strong sides for top user experience
- High-level flexibility
Let’s get deeper and discuss the main product design principles a development team would use to achieve that.
Essential principles for successful SaaS product design
Whether developers are aiming at the top of the SaaS market, or just want to create a decent product that would establish a strong foundation for them, it is strongly recommended to adhere to the following SaaS design main practices.
The product’s purpose comes first
Yeah, it’s great to deal with a visually satisfying product that can grab attention with its conciseness and intuitive design, however, these things are secondary. The product needs to get the job done, effectively and in a timely manner. It doesn’t really matter how pretty your SaaS product is if it fails to deliver this.
To achieve that, always think first about how the product would help the user solve a particular problem. Make elegant and effective flow the cornerstone of your design and build visual appeal on top of that foundation.
It’s hard to overestimate the importance of a competent team for the success of SaaS product development. It is crucial to maintain the balance between getting all the specialists the project needs and trying to keep costs reasonable and therefore avoiding hiring staff that’s not crucial. As soon as the project vision is completed, it would be wise to give serious thought to the team composition, with a clear understanding of the role that each particular team member would play in the project.
There is a great variety of specialists to consider, among them project managers, UI/UX designers, analysts, etc. Keep in mind that some of them you would need even when the project itself is completed to maintain the product and problem solve.
Keep it short, keep it precise
Just like with many other customer-oriented products, when it comes to building SaaS products, less is more. Overcomplicating the design needs to be avoided at all costs because the final user wants a product that is easy to understand and navigate. Keeping the design minimalistic and simple will work wonders both in terms of functionality and visual appearance.
Know your customer
Even if every member of a development team believes the product to be perfect, it might be far from reality without understanding the final user. It is important that they find it perfect as well.
To get there, the development team should rely on researching user behavior, with subsequent tailoring of the product’s features to it. With a thorough understanding of customers’ behavior comes an understanding of things they like and dislike the most in similar products, which allows the development team to set their product in accordance with audience expectations.
Listen to your customers’ feedback
Despite the fact that the product testing stage needs to be done quickly, it is important to spend enough time gathering customer feedback and fixing problems it highlights. That is why prototyping is essential — it allows the development team to quickly get the main aspects of the product to the target audience and keep tailoring it accordingly with feedback during the subsequent development stages. Such feedback can discover both problematic points and additional possibilities for the product.
With prototyping done right, the final product will be much more likely to succeed when the time comes for it to hit the market because it will be already adjusted to the audience’s liking.
Some final thoughts on the matter
The industry trends tend to change in a rapid manner. The market is growing constantly: it has reached approximately $145.5 billion in 2021, and is expected to get to the $172 billion mark this year.
To stay afloat in the volatile market of SaaS products, it is important to closely follow both technical novelties and customer preferences. The importance of well-thought-out product design is likely to increase with time because customer quality standards tend to get higher.
If a team of developers wants to succeed in such circumstances, following the main principles of SaaS design is mandatory. Constant education and practice in close contact with target customers will do the rest.