When we launched the HubSpot CRM at our INBOUND conference last year, one of the most buzzed-about aspects of the announcement was how much we planned to charge for it: nothing. As we celebrate the product coming out of beta and over 60,000 users on our sales products combined, I wanted to share why we made the CRM free and how we got this decision to work.
When our product team started building the CRM, the truth is that we didn’t have a price tag in mind. We simply wanted to see if we could create something useful and meaningful for our customers.
Last night, we hosted the first Tech Talk at Night here at HubSpot HQ. Over 100 product and engineering gurus came out to hear from our very own Ben Anderson on React.js and Wayfair's Andrew Rota and Matt DeGennaro on Tungsten.js. Two hours, three dynamic speakers, and dozens of carefully-crafted Pimm's cups later, we all had learned a few new names and front-end tips.
One of the questions people ask about our product team is what software development process we use. Do you practice scrum? Are you an agile shop? Does HubSpot take a Kanban approach? Are you lean? (That last one feels a little personal, doesn’t it?) The answer is always: we don’t follow a process, we pretty much just solve for the customer. And every time, they roll their eyes.
Going global is a big vision for companies and it's just as big an undertaking for their development teams. Since we started internationalizing HubSpot’s marketing software over a year ago, we’ve realized there’s way more to it than translating “color” to “colour”. To create a truly global product from the ground up, organizations have to make a commitment to solving for customers worldwide.
It’s a good time to be a SaaS company. We have tons of information at our fingertips on the metrics software-as-a-service companies should be tracking, including benchmarks for those metrics. But this wasn’t always the case; I remember when "Customer Acquisition Cost" and "Lifetime Value of a Customer" were buzzwords. Now, we have more acronyms than we know what to do with and those two only scratch the surface on how your biz is doing. No offense, CAC and LTV, but we need to dig a little deeper.