UX Best Practices of SaaS Leaders: What You Can Learn



The quality of your user experience can make or break the success of your SaaS, which is why you’re always looking for how to improve your UX with the best practices.

In this blog, we’ll explore the UX Design Strategies of Market-Leading SaaS companies so you can understand what the big players do well and get ideas of how to improve your SaaS to make users choose you over competitors.

UX Best Practices 1: Self-Serve Opportunities

To begin, let’s look at one thing the big players in SaaS do really well, which is creating opportunities to self-serve.

In a sea of SaaS products, it’s crucial to prioritise your users’ needs to create an exceptional user experience. One of the best ways to do this, while reducing customer support costs and churn rate, is helping users to self-serve.

SaaS Leader Example – Zoom

The figures Zoom has shared about the impact since they started to prioritise creating self-serve opportunities will make you want to do the same for your SaaS!

Zoom does this through using an AI-chatbot. Their AI-powered chatbot lets customers find the answers they need, right when they need them. The value is reflected in the results.

Since they began offering this technology, they’ve experienced a 93% self-service rate — that is, 93 out of 100 customer conversations are resolved successfully without needing to involve a live agent.

The millions of instant resolutions of user questions translates to a cost savings of more than $13 million every month.

UX Best Practices 2: Simplicity and Intuitiveness

Next, let’s talk about embracing simplicity and intuitiveness. As a SaaS Founder, you know that complexity is the enemy of adoption.

You want to embrace simplicity in your UI/UX design, making it effortless for users to navigate and accomplish tasks. SaaS market leaders prioritise clean and intuitive interfaces, focusing on ease of use and reducing the learning curve.

They employ modern design principles, such as minimalism, consistent visual elements, and logical information architecture. Frictionless interactions that solve a real problem will captivate your users and differentiate your SaaS.

SaaS Leader Example – Canva

Canva is the perfect example of how to do this. The company, which to date has raised $572.6M in funding, offers several advantages that contribute to its superiority over its competitors. (Source: Crunchbase)

Canva is designed to be highly intuitive, making it easy for its users, who often have limited design experience, to create professional-looking designs. The drag-and-drop interface, well-organised layout, and straightforward design tools enable users to navigate and use the platform with minimal effort.

Users can seamlessly integrate their own assets, such as logos, images, and fonts, into their designs. The platform supports easy uploads and organisation of user assets, ensuring quick access and streamlined integration within the design workflow.

The UI makes it beyond simple for users to browse and choose from the vast amount of templates, saving the user precious time and effort, all thanks to the way it’s designed.

No wonder Canva is used by 135 million people each month!

UX Best Practices 3: Personalisation and Customisation

Thirdly, let’s talk about something that is becoming more and more important nowadays; personalisation and customisation 

We all know, one size doesn’t fit all. Letting your users tailor their experience to their preferences is becoming a must-have everywhere, but particularly in SaaS. 

From customizable dashboards to personalised recommendations, providing a sense of ownership and personalization will make your SaaS an irresistible choice.

SaaS Leader Example – Slack

For example, Slack is one of the most customisable business tools out there. Not only does this help keep things organised and save time, but also makes you smile, which, let’s admit, is important at work!

One thing you can do is add keywords for messages. You can tell Slack to let you know when messages are sent with phrases like “new project” or “complaint”. So you see the most important messages ASAP!

UX best practices - Slack key word customisation feature

You have one-click emojis that appear when you hover over a message. This makes it simple to reply to a message quickly.

Plus, you can add your own custom emojis by uploading images, and customise the notification sound – yes, you can make it say ‘Hummus’ when you’ve got a message, because who wouldn’t want that?!

UX best practices - Slack customisation and personalisation

Slack’s customer base includes 80% of Fortune 100 companies. (Source: Slack)

They’ve become a $27B business. This is not because they are selling a group chat application, but in fact, because they are selling an entirely new paradigm of how teams communicate. You can’t take on such a big task like that without offering customisation and personalisation to your users!

UX Best Practices 4: Microinteractions

Finally, let’s look at the fourth and final UX best practices for this blog post.

You can add some fun to your SaaS with microinteractions! Remember it’s the little things that make a big difference!

By incorporating delightful microinteractions, such as animated feedback, subtle transitions, and playful elements, you create memorable moments that delight users. These small design details will set you apart from competitors.

SaaS Leader Example – Asana

Who does microinteractions really well? Asana. This software does this really well right from the beginning in their onboarding experience

Microinteractions provide immediate feedback to users, letting them know that their actions have been recognized and understood by the system.

As you are inputting your first tasks in the onboarding flow, you know they are accepted because the graphic subtly changes, indicating to the users that they are progressing. The smooth transitions between screens create a sense of continuity and flow within the application.

UX best practice - Asana onboarding

As soon as you log in, you see how the project is taking shape, which makes you instantly familiar with the UI of the platform and makes the interaction more enjoyable to work through, providing a top-notch user experience.

With such well-designed features, it’s no wonder companies like PayPal, Figma, Spotify and HubSpot use Asana! (Source: Asana)

UX Design is the secret weapon to outshine competitors

To wrap this up, we hope you feel inspired on how to improve the UX of your SaaS, by learning from the best practices listed here from companies with huge market share.

While design can often get left to the side at the beginning of building a SaaS, as your business grows, design innovations can 100% be your secret weapon to outshine competitors. 

By prioritising user-centric design, embracing simplicity, personalisation, and delightful microinteractions, you’ll create a SaaS experience that users can’t resist, so you can make your SaaS the top choice!

Need a hand?

At UserActive, we help SaaS founders create meaningful products users love.

Click here to book a no-obligation call to see if we’re a good fit to help you and your team!


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