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The State of 2021 SaaS Billing

2020 wasn’t what anyone expected. After a year full of reorganizations, delayed plans, and tough financial decisions, we’ve learned a lot about what’s vital.

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Team Maxio

December 30, 2020

2020 wasn’t what anyone hoped or expected. After a year full of reorganizations, delayed plans, and tough financial decisions, we’ve all learned a lot about what’s vital and what’s distracting. Every B2B SaaS business was faced with a choice: adapt or fall behind. As we look ahead at what 2021 has in store for B2B SaaS billing, here are the top 3 ways your organization can optimize your billing practices to get (and stay) ahead—no matter what happens.

1. Prepare to Pivot

If 2020 has taught businesses anything, it’s that things sometimes go sideways. That means you need to keep constant tabs on the big picture of your business’s most crucial operations, especially when the market is so volatile.

Start by increasing integration across your enterprise. Filter all crucial business information into a single source of truth that’s quickly and easily accessible by all stakeholders. This will enable you to keep your fingers on the pulse of your business and pivot your billing strategies accordingly.

Integrating your entire back office might seem like a daunting task, but it gives you the foundation to take your reporting to the next level. From there, you can leverage real-time data streams to automatically keep your big picture data up to date. Real-time reporting will allow you to create new forecasts based on the most current data, so you can proactively seek out and solve problems before they’re too big.

2. Offer Flexibility

Customers, now more than ever, need flexibility, control, and value. Believe it or not, you can offer this kind of support through your billing practices by employing the industry’s leading SaaS billing model: usage-based billing.

Usage-based billing puts the power back in your customer’s hands, allowing them to scale their services up and down based on their precise needs. But this flexibility benefits more than just your customers. It also benefits your business, as customers who retain precise control of their spending are more willing to work with you and less likely to cancel their subscription when money’s tight.

Implement your usage-based billing model as simply (charging based on count) or complexly (varying price based on multiple attributes associated with the usage and events) as you want. However you decide to implement, the point of usage-based billing is to stay flexible.

3. Increase Transparency

As uncertainty rises, trust falls. And the burden for retaining your customer’s trust falls directly on your business.

The best way to support this bond between business and customer is through transparency. Update customers early and often when changes arise, and offer a high level of detail on end-of-period invoices (especially if you’re employing a usage-based billing model). These updates can be via email, text, or your self-service portal. Regardless of the medium, the key is to make sure your customers have the information they need to stay happy. A happy customer is one who can trust that your company has their best interests in mind.

Do Right By Your Customer

All of this advice can be boiled down to a single focus: do right by your customer. It’s impossible to predict exactly what’s coming in 2021. So, the best thing you can do is put your customer first and ride the coming wave together.

Preparing your organization for pivots allows you to continue offering the service your customers want and need right now. Offering flexibility in billing allows your customers to scale according to what they can afford. And maintaining a high level of transparency solidifies the trust you’ve already earned, ensuring you and your customer are working as a team.

Take advantage of the opportunity you have now to review your business’s SaaS billing operations. Test new ideas and find new efficiencies with the goal of serving your customer better. Do right by them, and they’ll do right by you.

That’s what we aim to do for you. Maxio is your partner in B2B SaaS billing. Offering more than just a platform, we employ our 12 years of industry experience to help you strategically assess your billing and optimize for growth. Connect with our B2B SaaS Experts today to discover how we can help your business stay ahead in 2021.

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