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4 ways to create SaaS products that “wow” customers, earn a premium, and beat competition

VI #002: 4 Practical Ways For B2B SaaS Builders to Create Products That “Wow” Customers, Earn a Premium, and Beat the Competition

Read time: 6 minutes


Much has been written in product management by Ken Norton and others about striving to build a product that is “10x” better than competitors to differentiate themselves and succeed in the market. To help towards making your product(s) 10x better than your competitors, in this article I attempt to share some tips on how to create a “wow” factor in a product based on what has worked well for my teams and me in the past.

Creating a "wow" factor in a product can be a powerful strategy to differentiate it from competitors and to help establish a loyal customer base that is willing to pay a premium for the offering. This means going above and beyond the expected features and functionality to create a truly exceptional experience for customers. This can involve adding unique or innovative features, providing excellent customer service, or creating a strong brand and company culture. And to build this competitive advantage in a sustainable way, it’s important to continuously gather feedback from customers and strive for continuous improvement, as well as regularly seeking out new and innovative ways to stand out in the market.

Unfortunately, not successfully differentiating a product, can lead to commoditized offerings, high competition, and low margins.


Many companies miss the mark

The creation of a truly exceptional product requires a deep understanding of customer needs and pain points. Without this understanding, companies are likely to struggle to differentiate themselves from their competition. Limited resources, fear of failure, and a focus on solving specific problems can also impede innovation. Additionally, as the B2B SaaS market continues to become increasingly crowded, it can be difficult for companies to create a product that stands out. And, in more price-competitive markets, companies may prioritize meeting minimum requirements over creating a truly exceptional product.

These obstacles can lead to a subpar experience for customers, and even the downfall of a company. However, by staying close to their customers, building a culture that fosters experimentation, calculated risk-taking and learning, and implementing the right systems, companies can overcome these challenges and create a product that truly stands out. Here are 4 practical ideas that can help:


1. Leveraging artificial intelligence (AI) or machine learning (ML) to create a highly personalized and dynamic user experience

AI solves tasks that require human intelligence while ML is a subset of AI that solves specific tasks by learning from data and making predictions. AI or ML can enhance a software product by creating a personalized and dynamic user experience. Ways to leverage AI / ML that might be relevant to your product(s) include:

  1. Personalizing recommendations to users based on their individual interests and needs through analyzing user data and behavior with ML algorithms.
  2. Optimizing user flows using ML to make the experience more efficient and seamless by identifying patterns in user data and behavior.
  3. Automating repetitive tasks such as data entry and customer support inquiries with AI to save time and improve efficiency.
  4. Optimizing the UI with ML by identifying areas for improvement in design and layout changes based on analyzing usage data.

Some tips for implementing AI / ML in a product:

  • Build ML-powered features in an agile way, even starting with a non-ML algorithm if possible, collecting user feedback and training data, and layering in intelligence in later iterations.
  • Utilize cloud-based APIs (e.g. AWS or GCP) and open source models (e.g. Hugging Face, Papers with Code etc) and datasets (e.g. Kaggle Datasets, Google Dataset Search etc) to deliver early value and then fine-tune for specific use cases.
  • Ensure ethical use and protection of user's privacy (some decent starting points for these topics include reading up on the Ethical OS Toolkit, privacy-preserving ML, and regulations which may be relevant to your product(s) including but not limited to GDPR, CCPA/CPRA, COPPA, and HIPAA)
  • Invest in specialized tools and resources and bring on a team of experts such as ML engineers and data scientists ideally after market fit and traction has been validated for your ML-powered product.


2. Create a seamless user experience, free from friction and barriers

Creating a smooth, intuitive user experience (UX) that is free of friction and barriers can be extremely valuable to users and differentiating in a crowded market of complex business software. To create a seamless UX, consider hiring an in-house UX/design team and following best practices. Here are some tips to quickly create a more seamless user experience in a new software product:

  1. Streamline user flows by simplifying navigation, reducing clicks and steps, providing clear guidance, and maybe even removing rarely used features.
  2. Optimize the UI such as by using usability testing to identify areas for improvement.
  3. Provide clear and helpful guidance if needed, through in-app resources, tooltips, and third-party tools. Consider third-party tools such as UserPilot or UserGuiding to help accelerate this.
  4. Test and optimize in an evidence-based way by using A/B testing, user research, and gathering feedback to iterate on the user experience while protecting user's privacy, such as via using


3. Create a visually appealing and cohesive design that resonates with the target audience

In today's competitive market, strong visual design and aesthetics that resonate with your target audience can be a key differentiator. To achieve this, consider hiring a UI/UX professional or team and following these tips:

  1. Research your target audience to understand their preferences and needs, e.g. using market research and interviews.
  2. Create a design style guide that defines the look and feel of your product, including colors, typography, imagery, and other design elements, and helps create, and maintain a cohesive design consistent with your brand as the product grows. Here’s an example.
  3. Use high-quality assets such as images, icons and graphics. Hire a professional if needed.
  4. Continuously test and optimize by gathering feedback on your design and identify areas for improvement, such as via A/B testing and user research. Avoid changing the design too frequently or drastically.


4. Provide exceptional customer support

To provide exceptional customer support in a new software product, consider implementing the following strategies:

  1. Provide intuitive self-service such as via FAQs, a customer knowledge base (e.g. Zendesk), user forums and communities (e.g. Discourse, Discord), or a customer portal.
  2. Respond promptly to customer inquiries and track key performance indicators such as response and resolution times to help drive and scale improvement in a consistent way.
  3. Proactively solve customer problems by monitoring feedback and addressing common issues. Engineers should ideally build the product to gracefully degrade and self-heal automatically. And support teams should monitor, be alerted to, and fix issues before customers are impacted, using tools such as DataDog and PagerDuty.
  4. Go above and beyond to help customers with personalized support or additional resources. As a leader, champion and incentivize this value as part of your organizational culture.
  5. Continuously gather and act on customer feedback to improve the overall customer experience. Empowering the whole organization to share and act on this helps drive necessary improvements to product, processes, customer support policies, and other areas where needed.


That’s it for today.



Creating a "wow" factor for a product can be a powerful strategy and means going above and beyond the expected features and functionality to create a truly exceptional experience for customers. Some ways this can be achieved are below, I hope these may help you as much as they’ve helped my teams and me.

  1. Leveraging AI/ML to create a highly personalized and dynamic user experience
  2. Creating a seamless user experience, free from friction and barriers
  3. Creating a visually appealing and cohesive design that resonates with the target audience
  4. Providing exceptional customer support


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