Starting a new saas business and you think you are the first person to bring this idea? Or you only know a few names in your niche and planning to become one among them? Answering these questions needs proper saas competitor analysis. A lot of saas owners do this blunder of starting a saas business without doing much into market or competitor research.
The mindset that can let to failure is the validation of your saas. If you have done this right, you are probably one ladder ahead in the race. But, a general wrong perception leading to failure goes Like
- Hire a team and hit the millions.
- Probably your saas can offer the same solution at half the price.
- Throwing money on marketing something that never had a chance.
- Later it goes to blame game on the developers or,
- Cry and sometimes sue people who were actually not wrong since the beginning itself.
So, are you leading towards a good saas? Worried that your saas business may fail or you think that you have a unique idea. Well, if you think you have a unique idea, its rare. It's not impossible that you can have a rare idea but its rare. You need to validate your saas idea. This validation is only possible when you do your saas competitor analysis.
In this blog, we will explain you how you can validate your saas idea.
Why Saas competitor analysis is Must?
Doing saas competitor analysis is like taking prevention than waiting for a time to get cured. It will save a lot of revenue that can waste if you dont research and jump into market.
When you do your competitor analysis you get a lot of info from them which gives you a lot of idea about
- Kind of investment you need to make till success.
- The buyer's persona gets more clear.
- It also helps you find a hole in the market.
- You get new ideas in which you can reach a group of audience that is not being served yet.
- You will understand which platforms are giving more returns to your competitor's business.
- You can identify pain points to solve in a better way than compared to your competitors.
You will potentially get a lot of info from your competitor but make this note here, we are doing a saas competitor analysis here just to validate that our idea of starting a particular saas is worth it or not.
Let's take a look now. We are going to tell about few platform that will help you validate your saas competitor analysis and saas idea.
Top 6 ways to do SAAS competitor analysis.
We are presenting 6 strategies to do the validation.
- Google search.
- Social Media groups.
- Search ProductHunt.com
- Check Review websites.
- Find Similar websites.
- Check SEO Tools for data.
In the next steps we are going to take you through a walk through. During the research, you will have to understand the difference between direct competitor and indirect competitors.
Direct competitors are those business who would be having a saas almost similar to you and will be having the same buyer's persona as yours. While,
Indirect competitors will be those businesses tools that do something similar or are used to accomplish the same tasks.
If you still now think that you don't have a competitor then you need to do a hard research as you may be missing them out. Let's understand these hard research steps with the above mentioned ways.
1. Google search.
This is a general approch that anyone would do. For suppose, I wish to start a new saas in Applicant tracking system . I will search that keyword on google and see the SERP result of google.
In our google search result, we found few blogs talking about the Applicant tracking system but no direct application or a few of them is ranking. Probably the niche poeple in this segment is not working smart in SEO.
Here, we feel as if the competition is less as results in 2nd and 3rd page of google also seems to have less to no applicant tracking system ranking. Its all blogs ranking. No ATS product is ranking directly.
Don't come to conclusion here. Your million dollar plans can go in trash in the next saas competitor analysis steps.
2. Social Media groups.
Will directly tell you two secrets of validating your saas idea and do a saas competitor analysis.
- Find saas facebook groups.
- Ask linkedin professionals.
You must be confused how these social media can help you validate? Let's explain.
- Using facebook groups.
There are many good gathering of saas owners and marketers in some facebook groups like saas mantra and SaaS Growth Hacks.
You can join these groups and ask validating questions around your saas ideas. You will really get insightful replies.
So facebook group will actually help you get a lot of name and ideas which you cant even dig with google search.
- Ask LinkedIn Professionals.
This method will only help when you have a good network of people with saas backgroup.
You can ask question, or post survey links. If you have a knowledgeable network strength then you would get got insights.
3. Search ProductHunt.com
This is a platform where a bundle of saas are found every day. You can use its maker discussion forum to validate your idea and find the competitors.
You can start with a search using the search bar on the product hunt with your keyword.
When I hit enter to find more results, I only found just one product in this.
This is actually exciting as I see only one product is turning up for this idea.
Wait! The story is not yet ended here. We need to go to next step to do the our saas competitor analysis and validate our saas.
4. Check Review websites.
Not all answers are hidden in google search. You should also use big software listing and reviewing websites like Howtobuysaas, g2, Capterra, etc.
Let's give a try on G2 here
Here, we found a lot of competitors sitting in the category of applicant tracking system. G2 had a dedicated category of ATS with 418 product listing.
So we found a lot of competitors here but still, we need to validate that the competition is tough or easy. Since all 418 saas won't be competing at a cut throat level.
On doing a close calculation, we found that only 150 approx tools are currently operational and rest have potentially died out of race or closed. Among The 150 competitors, top 60 tools are doing good in business as per their reviews.
So we can come down to the conclusion that the market has a good traction with an ATS tool and you would need to be serious on scaling to beat the market.
Taking saas competitor analysis to a harder research, let us find Find Similar websites of top 10 competitors with high rating. We may find the ATS tool that are fighting on search engine and sharing their visibility on search engines.
5. Find Similar websites.
To find similar websites of competitors found till step 4, we will use semrush to find similar competitive tool in market.
You can get a free trial of Semrush and do this research.
If you are finding semrush to difficult to use then you can simly use similar web and find similar websites to your competitors.
Just install the similar web chrome extension and click on it while staying on your competitor website. It will you the desired result.
The last tool that you can use for competitor analysis purpose is using SEO tool. Already suggested Semrush above, stil their are other option as well.
6. Using SEO tools for Data.
Our favourite tool for this is Ahref and semrush. We already have written a tutorial on how to use semrush for competitor analysis in semrush review article.
Here we will give a quick and easy view to use ahref to do the same.
Simply take a free trial of ahrefs for 7 days. Enter your competitor domain. It will give you a list of its competing domain. Hence you will be able to find a list of your other competitor. In the below image, Jason Long explains how he used ahrefs to find his competitor for a lead generation system saas.
He has also written a complete gitbook on how to kick saas. You guys must read that. This blog is inspired by the strategy that he has shared in his gitbook.
A succesful saas is only possible when you will do a perfect saas competitor analysis and validate your idea. It doesn't make any sense if you don't do a research and directly jump into saas business.
You will fail like many other saas owners. You must avoid mistakes that a saas owner does and bring out a successful saas business.
Our team at how to buy saas team wish you good luck with your saas business. Let us know if you have anything to edit in this blog or add anything new. Get in touch with us.