Procurement professionals at companies large and small don’t have time to demo every software product they consider. Imagine, for example, that you need a software-as-a-service (SaaS) product to help manage your company’s human resources. You narrow your choices down to BambooHR, Greenhouse, Rippling and Zenefits. You need to develop a report for decision-makers that includes the features and benefits each offers, as well as the pricing available to a company the size of yours. Your research process needs to be efficient — and you certainly don’t have time to sit through demos and sales conversations for each option.
But that’s exactly where the sales funnels for BambooHR, Greenhouse, Rippling, Zenefits and other SaaS providers point you. They want your name, details on your company, your email address and your phone number. They want to set up a demo, and they also want to schedule a follow-up. Ultimately, they want to start you on a 14-day trial that consumes even more of your time, energy and effort.
In short, they want to bring you into their process.
But you have your own process in mind.
This is the inherent tension in the SaaS procurement world. Buyers want cut-and-dried, black-and-white information. Sellers want a sales cycle that moves forward on their terms — and that ends with you signing a contract. Which is why SaaS tools do their best to hide enterprise pricing.
Here’s the secret, though: There are ways for buyers to access the SaaS pricing information they need without getting sucked into sellers’ funnels. And, even better, there’s a silver lining to SaaS companies hiding their enterprise pricing: The hidden pricing means that they can and will be flexible with users who push for discounts and lower rates.
In this post, we walk you through the 3 most common places that procurement professionals search for enterprise pricing information. Those 3 common places to search for enterprise pricing are:
- SaaS Product Pricing Pages
- Review Sites
- Blogs, Forums and Chat Sites
But there’s also a fourth way to get SaaS pricing — a way to skip all of the frustration, to shorten the process and to quickly get the details you need. Contact our team at Sastrix to gain access to pricing benchmarks and all of the tools you need to make informed procurement decisions.
Below, we go in-depth on what it’s like to look in these 3 places for enterprise pricing for 4 leading SaaS providers:
- Culture Amp
Our Method: The Typical 3-Step Process for Finding Enterprise SaaS Prices
Most procurement professionals attempt to avoid the time-consuming sales funnels of leading SaaS products by conducting research online. The online research process typically includes 3 steps. Unfortunately, this 3-step process can often be frustrating, and it rarely leads to the comprehensive information you need to make confident purchasing decisions. Here’s a look at the 3 steps.
1. SaaS Product Pricing Pages
When researching most products, you can go right to the source and find the price. For example, if you’re looking to buy a new car, you go to the manufacturer’s website to get the MSRP. When you go to the dealership, they may offer incentives, and there’s likely to be some bargaining and negotiating — but the manufacturer’s website gives you a solid ballpark figure.
That’s not the case with enterprise software. These products do their best to keep you from finding their pricing until you speak to sales.
2. Review Sites
Yes, going straight to product sites when looking for enterprise software pricing can be frustrating. But there are other options. In fact, when you look at a search results page, you’ll find a series of review sites that claim to offer in-depth information on platforms like BambooHR, Braze, Culture Amp, Looker and others.
3. Blogs, Forums and Chat Sites
In this third step, procurement managers may seek out more detailed information from blogs, forums and chat sites. Unfortunately, given the smaller number of qualified prospects for enterprise-level solutions, you may find a limited number of quality sources when searching in these areas.
Searching for BambooHR Enterprise Pricing
Are you searching for BambooHR enterprise pricing? If you’ve started looking, you already know that it’s tough to find reliable details. Here’s a look at what you’re likely to discover when you search the 3 most common places.
BambooHR Pricing Page
BambooHR is human resources software that helps administrators manage team members throughout the employee lifecycle. A host of companies, when they reach a certain size, need SaaS products like BambooHR to help them create efficiencies and savings in their HR functions.
Of course, BambooHR is operating in a competitive environment, and the company goes to great lengths to get you on the phone with sales — so that you get sucked into BambooHR’s sales funnel instead of exploring other options.
That’s why the BambooHR pricing page doesn’t include any pricing. The pricing page includes 2 different plans and a number of add-ons, but it does not tell you how much the plans or add-ons cost. Instead, the prevalent call to action on the page is for the visitor to get a customized quote. If you click the button, you get invited to complete a form that asks for your name, email address, phone number, number of employees at your company, plus your country of operation.
BambooHR on Review Sites
Capterra is one of the most prominent review sites , and it provides basic information on BambooHR. It lists out BambooHR’s competitors. And, of course, it offers BambooHR pros and cons — plus reviews.
But check out the pricing section of BambooHR’s entry on Capterra. It simply says, “Not provided by vendor.” If you’ve already been to the BambooHR pricing page, you already know this. It’s a pretty frustrating experience for procurement pros who are searching for pricing information before scheduling demos.
Other review sites try to provide better pricing information, but information on different sites often conflicts. For example, BetterBuys states the price for BambooHR’s Essentials package as $6.19 per user, but G2 states it as $4.95 per user. A dollar-plus might not sound like a big deal, but that delta can really add up for large companies. Further complicating the picture, GetApp says that BambooHR starts at $99 per month, which appears to be a completely different pricing structure than what other review sites describe.
PC Mag delivers a different experience, though it’s no less frustrating for procurement professionals. It offers a call to action to “compare prices,” but that link takes you to a multi-step form that eventually asks you to submit personal information to get the pricing information you want. If you wanted to submit personal information, you could have simply gone through the process directly with BambooHR.
BambooHR on Blog, Forums and Chat Sites
The biggest challenge with searching blogs, forums and chat sites for enterprise pricing is that you get a lot of unwanted information to sift through. For example, search BambooHR on Quora, and you get a lot of different threads — not of which deals directly with pricing:
You’ll also find that a lot of the information is dated. Check out the top result: It’s from 2014. It’s hard to imagine that information from 2014 is still going to be helpful to a procurement professional looking for enterprise pricing details in the 2020s.
Searching for Braze Enterprise Pricing
Braze is another enterprise SaaS product that carefully hides its pricing. Here’s a rundown of what you’re likely to find when looking for information related to Braze’s enterprise pricing.
Braze Pricing Page
Braze is mobile engagement automation software that can help users send personalized messages across channels and devices, create and optimize cross-channel campaigns, stream engagement data to partners, and more.
In short, Braze offers a powerful SaaS platform that is in-demand among modern companies that are looking to connect and stay in touch with their customer bases. If you’re a procurement professional researching Braze and its competitors, you would likely look to Braze’s website for pricing information — and you would end up disappointed.
Like BambooHR, Braze includes no pricing information on its site — just a list of packages. Braze offers 4 different tiers of services — Growth, Advanced, Pro and Enterprise. To get specific pricing information, though, visitors have to follow the “connect with sales now” CTA, which leads to a form that requests your name, email address, company name, phone number, job level, job function, industry, number of employees at company, as well as country of operation.
If you’re sensing a pattern developing, you’re 100% correct. Enterprise level SaaS products want to capture details about you and your business, and then they want to connect you with members of their sales teams.
If you’re wondering what comes next after you complete the form, Braze’s URL structure provides a hint. Clicking the “connect with sales now” button opens a popup with this URL: https://www.braze.com/product/packages#demo. Your next step will be a demo — one that you likely don’t have time for.
Braze on Review Sites
Braze’s Capterra entry is similar to BambooHR’s in that there’s nothing in the way of pricing information. G2 provides a little more information on Braze, lumping it into a “mid-market” category, giving it 4 dollar signs and sharing that it’s “36% more expensive than the avg. Mobile Marketing product.”
Still, this information is vague and lacking context. There’s little that a procurement professional can use as actionable information in making purchasing decisions, or even in narrowing down options when searching for mobile marketing solutions.
Braze on Blog, Forums and Chat Sites
Braze presents a completely different problem when you start searching on sites like Quora — it’s name is easily confused with something completely different. So, when you search “braze” on Quora, you get a lot of results related to a joining process for metals:
Again, procurement professionals are pressed for time. They don’t have hours upon hours, and certainly not days upon days, to spend searching for enterprise pricing information. Running into an issue like this one with Braze can be extremely frustrating, and it’s certainly not something that a procurement professional needs to deal with.
Searching for Culture Amp Enterprise Pricing
Culture Amp is another SaaS tool that makes it difficult to find enterprise pricing. See below for what a typical search for pricing-related Culture Amp information might include.
Culture Amp Pricing Page
Culture Amp offers software that helps companies create better employee experiences. According to its homepage, this SaaS tool assists with engagement, performance and retention. Sounds nice, right? It’s no wonder why companies of all sizes are interested in a platform like Culture Amp’s. It’s far less expensive to engage and retain existing employees than it is to recruit, hire and onboard new ones. So, in a sense, a tool like Culture Amp should pay for itself over time.
But it’s hard for procurement professionals to assess the return on investment that Culture Amp offers, because it’s impossible to find pricing information on Culture Amp’s website. Like the examples above, Culture Amp’s “plans and pricing” page is more plans than pricing. Visitors can see that Culture Amp offers 3 tiers of service — Self-starter, Standard and Enterprise. But pricing specifics are hidden behind “get a quote” buttons.
Culture Amp does offer a 3-minute demo, surely designed to meet the time constraints of busy procurement pros. But even the demo requires a form completion.
Culture Amp on Review Sites
Culture Amp has similarly vague entries on review sites. SelectHub gives Culture Amp 5 dollar signs, but those dollar signs don’t provide the level of detail procurement managers are seeking. SourceForge suggests that Culture Amp starts at $3,300 a year, which is a little more helpful. Still, there’s not enough information about how many licenses the entry level price provides and what level of service it includes.
Capterra confirms that Culture Amp starts at $3,300 a year per user, but then it includes a curious additional detail — Culture Amp plans start at $11 per person per month. Does this mean that you must have, at minimum, 25 users for Culture Amp? It’s unclear how these numbers scale for larger companies, and it’s also unclear how much a given user can expect to pay based on a company’s needs.
Culture Amp on Blogs, Forums and Chat Sites
Here’s another frustrating situation. When you search a site like Reddit for information related to Culture Amp, you get a lot of results related to Culture Amp job opportunities — which aren’t relevant, obviously, to your procurement work. And then you also get a lot of results with broken ampersand code (&). There’s nothing related to enterprise pricing near the top of the search results.
Searching for Looker Enterprise Pricing
Looker is one of the most popular SaaS tools for collecting and analyzing data. Unfortunately, it’s extremely difficult to find enterprise-level pricing details when you’re considering Looker for your company. Here’s what you’re likely to find as you seek out Looker’s enterprise pricing.
Looker Pricing Page
Modern companies thrive on data-driven decision-making. Looker is a SaaS tool that helps companies harness the power of their data to grow and better serve their customers and users.
Looking for Looker pricing? You guessed it: You’ll have to get on the phone with sales. The Looker pricing page doesn’t even list out different plan types. It only gives visitors 2 options: request a quote or request a demo. Both options require visitors to enter personal and corporate details.
Looker on Review Sites
Looker is another SaaS tool that gets a “not provided by vendor” entry for pricing on Capterra. G2 is similar, stating that “Looker has not provided pricing information for this product or service.” As with the tools listed above, Looker is a SaaS product that will leave procurement professionals searching the far ends of the internet for reliable pricing information. That search will lead them from review sites to blogs, forums and chat sites.
Looker on Blogs, Forums and Chat Sites
Even if you do find a good blog post, you may quickly discover that it’s regurgitating information you found on the product’s site and on relevant review sites. This blog post, for example, claims in its headline to help readers understand Looker’s pricing model. But it does not deliver any of the pricing details that a procurement team needs to make decisions.
You might be able to find a decent Reddit thread on the product you’re looking for. But, on Reddit, you’re likely to get a lot of unsolicited recommendations for other SaaS products you should try. Also, as demonstrated by the thread below regarding Looker and business intelligence tools, you may find that your answers come in the form of other currencies. There’s nothing wrong with this, of course, but converting those currencies to yours can be time-consuming — and time is the one thing you don’t have to spare in procurement.
Search other enterprise SaaS products on Reddit, and you’re unlikely to find much information. For example, searching “BambooHR pricing” on Reddit returns only this message: “Sorry, there were no community results …”
Quora is another site that allows users to ask questions that the community then attempts to answer. You may find hidden gold on Quora from time to time, but you often have to sift through a lot of misinformation to get the details you need.
For example, there’s a question from late 2016 asking about Looker pricing. Someone quickly answered that “it’s going to be around $3k–$3.5k per month depending on number of users (10–25).” This sounds helpful, but how reliable can information from 2016 be?
There’s a more recent answer from late 2019 that suggests “Looker offers subscription pricing that ranges from $3,000–$5,000 per month for 10 users, and $50 per month for each additional user with a free trial also available.” This information is more detailed, but it’s still dated.
A Better Way: Use Sastrix’s Benchmarking Service for Enterprise Software Pricing
If you’re a procurement professional considering 10 different SaaS products for a business need, you don’t have time to sit through 10 hour-long demos. You want to know what different tools can do and how much they will cost your company, and then you can narrow down your options to 3 or less. Then, and only then, do you have time to spend talking to sales teams and sitting through demos.
Sastrix lets you skip the 3-step process outlined above.
No longer do you have to search products’ pricing pages, sift through review sites, and bounce from forum to forum looking for relevant information. At Sastrix, we offer a benchmarking service that provides cost information that helps you make confident decisions. We can also provide insights on fit and the tools that will best meet your company’s needs.
As a procurement pro, you can continue going through the same old process, searching around the internet, falling into too many sales funnels, sitting through too many demos, and testing software through too many 14-day trials.
Or you can let Sastrix do the heavy lifting so that you can focus on other things. We know the SaaS industry, and we understand the challenges, frustrations and pains of searching for the right tool. We can help you slash the amount of time it takes to identify and secure the right SaaS tool to fit your company’s size and needs. And, as an added benefit, we can help you push for the discounts and lower rates that we know are available through almost all SaaS providers.
Spend more time testing and validating tools you know meet your needs within your budget. Spend less time running into dead ends when you choose Sastrix for enterprise software pricing information.
Get in touch to learn more about our benchmarking service — and how we can accelerate your procurement process.