Menu
What Are the Biggest Challenges Within the Enterprise Software Industry? Godard Abel Has the Answer

What Are the Biggest Challenges Within the Enterprise Software Industry? Godard Abel Has the Answer

Table of Contents


  •  G2 is playing an integral role in more transparent selling.
  • ”We first have to clean up our data so we can do it in a way that delivers a great experience versus horrific experience if the data’s wrong,” says Godard
  • The enterprise software industry’s future goal should be to make software buying and software selling efficient.

Godard Abel has been a SaaS entrepreneur for over 20 years, and G2 is the third company he’s building.

The journey of G2 was quite challenging. The company had no revenue for about three years. Fortunately, they had a successful exit with BigMachines, which Oracle acquired, so they self-funded most of the initial build, putting in almost all the original $2 million themselves.  But a story about G2 had a few exciting twists.

Godard Abel and another G2 co-founder Matt Gorniak started SteelBrick. Their vision was to create a CPQ specifically for Salesforce because they knew that Oracle buying BigMachines would leave a vacuum in the ecosystem.

They focused on SteelBrick at the same time when Tim Handorf became CEO of G2. According to Godard, Tim did a great job getting into critical mass. While the G2 team worked on building the platform and getting to a critical mass of reviews and more categories, Godard was dedicated to making SteelBrick. The company got acquired by Salesforce, and Gordon came back to G2.

Today, G2 has over a million users. However, they have over six million software buyers coming to g2.comevery month.

"We saw a big surge last year due to COVID. We already had Zoom, Slack, we had all these digital apps, but most companies didn't. And so, last March and April, we saw a tremendous surge, where categories like video conferencing were up 400%."

- Godard Abel

CEO & Co-Founder at G2

Challenges within the enterprise software industry

As Godard explains, one of the biggest challenges software buyers faced was discovering apps like BigMachines. It was a problem the BigMachines team decided to solve. Their goal was to make it easy for buyers to find apps most suitable for their businesses. Another challenge they saw was a vendor’s recognition.

"I remember we had to rely on analysts like Gartner to give us third-party validation. It took us nine years to get into the Gartner report; it took us 12 years to become the leader."

- Godard Abel

CEO & Co-Founder at G2

Having to wait more than a decade to become the leader can be frustrating from an entrepreneur’s perspective. The BigMachines team wanted fast results, and they wanted to focus on customers.

"What was happening on Yelp, on TripAdvisor, on Amazon, where people can discover a great app, able to shop based on authentic peer reviews, we wanted to bring that to our industry. So that was the starting vision to make it much easier for software buyers to find the right apps, but also to trust them based on real user reviews."

- Godard Abel

CEO & Co-Founder at G2

Building G2: one category at a time

The G2 team decided to focus on CRM software because it was part of a familiar field. With BigMachines, they partnered with companies like Salesforce and Microsoft Dynamics. However, it took them a long time to get enough reviews right on the product. Therefore, they built one category at a time.

Now G2 has about 2000 software categories, but it did take a few years to get to critical mass.

Another opportunity coming across their path was data. The enterprise software industry acknowledged the importance of data, and more and more software vendors rely on it to define the ideal customer profile.

"Rather than trying to just market to everyone, you laser focus on accounts that would have a great need for your product."

- Godard Abel

CEO & Co-Founder at G2

Data has become an integral part of the G2 business. It is an opportunity no one forced when they started the company.

Godard’s expectations: to make software buying and software selling efficient

Godard says his dream for the enterprise software industry is to come to the point where software buying and software selling is much more efficient.

"If you look at Salesforce, one of the expressions they have internally is 'Enterprise software is sold, not bought.' I hope we can take this industry where software is bought more because it gets so easy to buy."

- Godard Abel

CEO & Co-Founder at G2

There’s also a considerable information asymmetry and, as already mentioned, software buyers still don’t know which apps are out there and which one to choose.

Buying on AWS marketplace is like buying on Amazon

"G2 is partnering with AWS marketplace. What's cool there, they're starting to have a lot of transactions; you can list if you have your product, your software, SaaS product hosted on AWS."

- Godard Abel

CEO & Co-Founder at G2

There’s a considerable number of software buyers purchasing products on the AWS marketplace. Buying there is almost like buying on Amazon. That’s the reality. More and more people purchase online.

Like 80% of the buying journey is happening online now for a lot of enterprise software.

The multiple dataset world as part of the reality

Building a data foundation will be of the utmost importance in the future.

"To be a great B2B marketer, a great B2B seller, you want to stitch together all this data, customers so that you can target them in the most personalized way at the right time"

- Godard Abel

CEO & Co-Founder at G2

Another important topic is how to deal with challenges within privacy management, especially in a multiple dataset system. G2 has a software category and privacy data management.

Get updates to your inbox

Get your Free Trial or Register for a Free Demo Today

Free Trial Request a Demo
What Are the Biggest Challenges Within the Enterprise Software Industry? Godard Abel Has the Answer

Check Out These Related Posts

A Beginner’s Guide to Keeping a Duplicate Free Database

A Beginner’s Guide to Keeping a Duplicate Free Database

April 29, 2021

What Are the Biggest Challenges Within the Enterprise Software Industry? Godard Abel Has the Answer

By RingLead

View Post
Bridging the Divide - The Lead to Account Relationship

Bridging the Divide – The Lead to Account Relationship

September 1, 2020

What Are the Biggest Challenges Within the Enterprise Software Industry? Godard Abel Has the Answer

By RingLead

View Post
How to Assess Data Quality in your CRM and MAP

How to Assess Data Quality in your CRM and MAP

July 2, 2020

What Are the Biggest Challenges Within the Enterprise Software Industry? Godard Abel Has the Answer

By Rachel Chinapen

View Post