Validating Your SaaS

This is the MOST IMPORTANT thing in the book, don't skip it.

A lot of people get started with an idea, skip the validation, hire a team, and get going on the build of their project. Then, they get to the sales part and don't have a plan in place, know who they are selling to, understand how to reach those people, know what to say, and often end up realizing that either they built something that was not worth building or cannot compete in the market.

What happens all the time:

  1. I have an idea!

  2. Hire a team to build my idea.

  3. Wow, that was a lot more expensive than I thought it would be. But now I have something that kinda works about half way.

  4. How do I sell this thing and who's going to buy it?

  5. Throw money at marketing something that never had a chance in the first place.

  6. Give up and complain about how the developers destroyed a great idea.

  7. Cry & sometimes sue people.

This happens more than anyone wants to admit.

It hurts, it's embarrassing, it's a loss, and it can put you in the hole fast and in a bad way. It can ruin marriages and sink people into depression. If this is the position you're in now, it's ok. It happens to the best of us, and has happened to me more than once. Maybe you can pivot your business and still get some use out of the system, or maybe it's time to wash your hands of this, build up funds again and start over with a fresh perspective. Either way, you're going to learn a lot and it's going to be better the next time.

As you probably suspected, there's a much better way.

Idea validation is a must

There are a few people out there who did not do any validation and were still wildly successful. This is luck, plain and simple. For the rest of us, there is a process to ensuring success, it's call validation. For a SaaS project, I have outlined a process that works, but only if you do it.

The validation process outlined in this book is specific to SaaS products. But I recommend going further than just this and reading The Lean Startup by Eric Ries. Since you’re already reading this book and you’re probably going to finish this one first, let's delve into the SaaS validation process.

But first, let's talk about what happens when you don't validate.