How do you find a problem that can be solved using a SaaS?

I feel like almost anything can be solved with software.

I think it's helpful to first work on your mindset because it can prevent you from looking for solutions.

Firstly, your software does not have to solve a huge problem. It can, but it can as well solve a very small problem. Most devs think they should solve a big problem to make a lot of money, but it's untrue. In fact, I've found that the more you can niche it down, the better. In a similar fashion, the user that wants it all (asks for more features, open more support tickets, etc) is usually the user that pays less. Whereas, when you sell to say, enterprise, they want just one small small thing solved and they can pay a lot more money.

Secondly, your product does not have to be innovative at all, it can be just slightly better than the competition's or it can just refine a process that is already helpful and working for the target market you are addressing.

Regarding the actual problem itself, I think the right attitude is looking for solutions, not problems. 

I always have my mind constantly looking for potential solutions and not focused on problems.

There are more opportunities in this world than you can ever pursue. You have to start with what you know best, and I think that merging some kind of market knowledge with programming skills is the real deal. There are a lot of marketers who can't code and a lot of devs who can't market and if you can do both, you have a huge advantage.

Once you find the problem, here are some questions that I ask myself:

  1. Does this new thing I want to start help me reach my goal? A business should always serve the entrepreneur. The product has to adapt to your goals and your lifestyle, not the contrary. I see many founders who are slaves of their products trying to chase growth at all costs instead of a happy life.

  2. Would I enjoy doing this new thing in the long term? My strategy is to be in the game for a long time. This is a great advantage as it gives me the gift of time. It allows me to make interesting bets and taking more losses in the short term and (hopefully) more wins in the future.

  3. What’s the market opportunity? Is the opportunity related to competition in the market? Is it maybe related to potential integration partners? Basically, who do we sell the new product to and why now? Product/market fit should really be called market/product fit because it starts with the market. It starts with identifying who the market is and what the market wants. Then, the product is a reflection of how we sell to the market what it wants and how we solve its problems.

  4. Does it align with what I am good at? Basically, why me? Is this the right product I should be building? Does it fit my zone of excellence? Here are some things I know about me: I am a starter, I am a scraper, I build fast. Why is this the right product for me?

  5. Does it multiply? How does the new product relate to the existing products I have? Is there a cross-selling opportunity?

  6. What are the consequences of building this new product? Consider consequences in terms of money, resources, and time. Having a new product also means having more inputs (people pinging you, for example) and that will also take more mental space. These are the obvious ones, but there are other consequences that are more difficult to think of. Think of consequences long-term. Second, third, fourth-order consequences.

If you want to read more on those:

Hope it helps 🙏🏻