SaaS sign-up flow is the first thing your prospective customers will experience when they interact with your product. Since first impressions are the last impression, making your SaaS sign-up flow as frictionless as possible makes sense. It also results in a better user experience and drives in higher SaaS conversion rate.
We will look at the various steps to optimize SaaS sign up flow to increase conversions later in this write-up. Before that, let us start with the definition of SaaS sign-up flow.
Definition of SaaS sign up flow
Saas sign-up flow is the first encounter your customer or user has with your digital product, and this is why it has a major impact on the impression of your product built in the customers’ minds.
The SaaS sign-up flow is the process that consists of the collection of necessary data from customers, setting them apart in your user base, authenticating the user’s identity, and then assigning the roles. It equips the users to personalize their profile as per their choice and be a part of a community.
An important thing that defines a good SaaS sign-up flow is that it makes the customers feel that the personal information they are providing is necessary and getting something in return. If a customer feels that they are being asked to provide much more information than required, they will surely drop the idea of signing up for your SaaS product viz. website or application.
Generally talking, SaaS sign-up flows are of two types – Friction based flow and frictionless flow. Friction-based flows involve multiple steps, fields, and additional activities to complete the process of signing up. On the other hand, frictionless sign-ups take less information about the users and let them sign-up in just a few clicks. Though frictionless sign-ups are more vulnerable to being hit by spammers, both types of sign-up flows have their relevance and importance in different scenarios.
Scenarios where frictionless sign-up will be most appropriate
Businesses having simple products without the need for technical integration, email marketing, or along the way engagement should opt for frictionless sign-up. It is appropriate for B2C businesses as well.
Frictionless sign-up aims to keep things easier for the users and collect only relevant data to serve the authentic customers. If the process is done right and customers are provided the option to personalize their account, the customer becomes a part of your business and helps in the growth of the business. When the number of authentic customers grows, it accelerates the speed of further growth of the business.
Choosing the optimal level of friction in the sign-up process for any business is important to have a steadily growing number of authentic customers. Too much friction can turn away many interested users. Less than needed friction can make the SaaS product target of spammers, thus wasting all the efforts to grow the business.
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A step-by-step guide to creating SaaS sign up the flow with examples
You can use various methods to create SaaS sign-up flow to ensure a better conversion rate. Here we are providing a few of the methods with step-by-step guidance and real-life examples to make the concept clearer to you.
Method 1 – Taking all the data upfront
This is the most common method used in the real world and can be effectively used in the digital world as well. It is just like buying a car in the real world. The customer goes to a store, provides all relevant information, gets the documentation work done, pays for the product, and accesses it.
Similarly, you can take all necessary data from customers during the sign-up process itself. This method is believed to work best as most people are already accustomed to it from their real-world experience. However, some people may leave the process in between when you demand all the information upfront. The best way to tackle this issue is to explain why certain information is being asked from the customer.
Method 2 – Asking for data after providing some access
If you want to minimize friction in your SaaS sign-up flow, you can opt for this method. In this method, users are given access to some of the features of your product with minimum data. Once the user gets the feel of the product, they are more likely to provide all relevant data to get full access to your website or application.
‘Chargebee’ used this method successfully. Users gain access by just providing their email id for the first time. Other authenticating information is asked when the user returns for the second time. This method, just like others, have its pros and cons.
Method 3 – Giving instant access and collecting contextual data when the need arises
Progressive profiling, i.e., collecting data progressively at appropriate steps, is one of the best methods for balancing frictionless sign-up and authentication. The interested users are provided instant access to the product without asking for dozens of information. Customers are asked for relevant information as and when the need arises. In this method, the more the customer interacts with your product, the more data they provide, thus progressively building their authentic and personalized profile.
Geni.com website is one of the best examples of progressive profiling.
Five validated elements to test your SaaS sign-up page
SaaS sign-up pages have a number of elements, but not all elements are equally important. Here we are providing you with five validated elements to test your SaaS sign-up page.
Well-defined and memorable value proposition – Mere glimpse of your product should give the visitors an idea about your value proposition. They should know what they are being offered and how it will add value to their lives.
Customer reviews and testimonials – People tend to believe in words of mouth. You do not need to wait until word of mouth praise for your product reaches your prospective customer. You can provide positive customer reviews and testimonials from your satisfied clients on your website and let the visitors know how positively you have impacted your customers.
Virtual tour of your product – There’s no need to keep surprises for the visitors or your trial users. It is a good practice to let your visitors know what to expect next. The entire onboarding process and how it works should be explained to the visitors in the trial period only. This feature increases the rate of conversion from trial to paid.
Social proof in the form of numbers – Besides providing testimonials on the sign-up page, you should also provide social proof in the form of numbers. You can display the number of visitors, happy customers, etc., on the sign-up page.
Screenshots and Demos – You can attract more customers by providing screenshots from your application as a demo to let your visitors understand your product well. Screenshots help visitors peep into your product and decide whether it’s useful for them.
Common SaaS sign up flow mistakes to avoid at all costs
Let us now walk you through the most common SaaS sign-up flow mistakes that you need to avoid at all costs.
Asking too much and irrelevant questions – Asking too many questions increases the friction and thus can turn down many potential customers. To keep the friction level to the optimal level, you must collect only relevant data by asking relevant questions.
Keeping the process completely frictionless – A frictionless process is an easier target for spammers. When you can’t authenticate your customers, you cannot easily weed out the spammers, and this, in turn, may ruin the experience of your genuine customers.
Repeated Fields – This can be a great turn-off for any visitor trying to sign-up for your product. Before making your sign-up page live, make sure that there’s no repeated field.
Keeping the duration of registration lengthy – When a user tries to sign up for a SaaS product, she wants to get the feel of the product as soon as possible. Lengthening the duration of registration is a recipe for turning away visitors from the mid-way.
Not able to provide natural flow to the questions – Users will readily provide information when they feel that the data asked are natural to be asked for using a certain product. If your questions have no natural flow, users may become skeptical.
The process to optimize your customer upgrade/upsell process
If you fail to upsell your customers, you are losing a lot of revenue. SmartKarrot can help you operationalize and scale your customer success. It helps you optimize user journey to improve the customer experience. In addition to all the required relevant features, SmartKarrot provides you with additional hot features, including a customer health dashboard, customer survey feature, customer success automation, automated playbooks, etc.
When it comes to SaaS sign-up flows, no fixed formula will give you the right results. You need to evaluate your needs, and for that, you need to answer these questions: 33
- What does your business wish to achieve?
- Who are you targeting?
Once you have answers to these questions, it will help you to create the best SaaS sign-up to provide a great customer experience.
Rakhin has over 10 years of experience driving business development and client services. In his prior roles, he stayed close to customers to understand their requirements and help them achieve their business goals. He is passionate about customer success.
Published December 28, 2021, Updated December 17, 2021