Located: Somerville, Massachusetts
Geography: United States
Market: Customer Success Automation
Key Customers: Dyn, Constant Contact, TribeHR, and Acquia
Blog: Apptegic Blog
I asked Karl Wirth, CEO and Founder of Apptegic, a few questions about his business and view of the SaaS market in 2013 and beyond.
Did you start out as a Software-as-a-Service company?
Yes, Apptegic started as a Software-as-a-Service company that helps other SaaS and online companies to better understand and respond to their customers.
Why do your customers buy from Apptegic?
SaaS businesses live and die by two key rates; conversion rates of interest to purchase and retention rates. Apptegic customers buy from us because we can help them to increase both rates.
For many SaaS companies, the key conversion rate is that of free-to-paid or other words freemium-to-paying or free-trial-to-paying. By helping a company to better understand each free users engagement with their service, Apptegic can help that company convert more of their free users into paying customers. This allows sales teams to better able to focus on the highest value prospects who are most likely to purchase. For marketing teams this means they can proactively target free users inside of their app to maximize their initial adoption and success with their service. This means the entire company is now more informed about how each user is or isn’t using their service and so can better serve them.
It is a similar story for retaining and upselling existing customers. SaaS businesses are always driving down churn rates by retaining as many customers as possible and upselling them additional services to generate higher levels of revenues per account. This is hard to do that if the business doesn’t understand its customer’s behavior. By enabling SaaS businesses to know each customer’s level of engagement with their business across their customers visits, actions, and other business metrics of importance. Apptegic can help sales and customer success teams prioritize their work, get alerted to impending problems and opportunities, and respond appropriately for maximum impact. Our product also enables marketing teams to automate many aspects of customer success communications with behaviorally targeted messages appropriate to each user right inside of their web experience. This is one way Apptegic increases customer retention.
What do you see as the key trends emerging in the SaaS industry?
Customer Success is emerging as a new key role inside of software companies who are focused on optimizing customer retention. In a business where everything depends on renewals, a function dedicated to maximizing each customer’s success with the service has become imperative. Apptegic is making the tools for this new customer success function.
Free and freemium software business models are no longer emerging trends but they remain an important ones. There’s already a good amount of risk whenever a business decides to implement any new functional processes or software feature, and offering a free trial or freemium offering can be a powerful selling tool. Of course, free is not useful for a business unless it can be monetized.
Real-time in-app communication is another key trend. Over the past year, an increasing number of SaaS applications have added in-app messaging to guide their users to success. Currently the focus is on calling out new features that haven’t been used before. This trend will continue and move toward behaviorally targeted in-app messaging that brings guidance and appropriate selling directly into the solution.
What is your market outlook for 2013?
2013 will be another record year for Apptegic. We have built the most powerful, easy-to-integrate, and easy-to-use customer success solution on the market. We will continue to enhance our solution while rolling out key partnerships, integrations, and functionality. We are seeing the practices and tools of the SaaS industry, and interest in our solutions, cross from Business-to-Business (B2B) and Business-to-Consumer (B2C) SaaS companies in other verticals including online communities, financial services, and membership commerce.