Self-Serve Billing Portal: Why You Absolutely Need One as a SaaS Startup

April 28, 2024
Providing customers with the ability to manage their subscription on their own doesn't sound like a big deal - but it can make a difference in many different ways. For SaaS startups, especially those with a Product-Led Growth (PLG) strategy, a self-serve billing portal isn't just a nice-to-have; it's a necessity. But what exactly is a self-serve billing portal, what does it do, and why should you care? Let's dive in and explore.

What Is a Self-Serve Billing Portal?

Whether it's referred to as a "Self-Serve Billing Portal," "Customer Billing Portal," "Customer-Facing Billing Portal," or any other variations, the idea behind those terms is the same: Providing an interface where customers can independently manage their billing and subscription details of their SaaS pricing plan.
Most Common Features
Here are some typical features that define self-serve billing portals
Account Information Management
A fundamental feature of self-serve billing portals is the ability for users to view and update their account information. This includes personal details, company information, and preferences that ensure the billing process aligns with the user's needs.
Payment Information Updates
Self-serve billing portals also offer customers the ability to update their payment information, including credit card details and other payment methods. This feature is essential for maintaining uninterrupted service, allowing customers to quickly change their payment details if their previous method expires or is compromised.
Viewing Billing History and Invoices
Customers can access their billing history and download previous invoices through the portal. This is providing customers with a clear overview of their transactions, account balance, and any outstanding charges.
Payment Status
To help users stay on top of their billing, self-serve portals often include the payment status. Alerts can inform users of upcoming charges, successful payments, or issues that need their attention, such as expired payment methods.

Why You Should Have a Billing Portal

Killer Feature for PLG Startups: Self-Serve Upgrades
The ability for customers to self-service upgrade their subscriptions is arguably one of the most significant aspect of a self-serve billing portal, especially for PLG startups. However, many self-serve billing portals offfered by subscription billing providers do not offer this functionality - or hide it between a super clunky UI that none of your customers will be able to figure out anyhow. If you are in the market for such a tool, make sure to check out the upgrade UI components yourself. If you build this userflow in-house, make sure you give it as much (or even more) attention as you do to the rest of your product.

But why is this feature so important? Upgrades can be a vital source of revenue growth, and statistics show that they can significantly contribute to the bottom line. By providing a user-friendly interface for your customers to access their invoices and upgrade themselves, you can make it much easier for your customers to upgrade - and impact your upsells significantly.
Your Enterprise Customers Care About Invoices
Even SaaS startups that are primarily sales-led and cater to larger enterprise customers benefit from a self-service billing portal. Your customers probably care more about getting an invoice than they'd like to admit, so having a dedicated billing section in your product makes your SaaS startup appear more professional and reliable. It signals to enterprise customers that your startup values them and matches the professionalism from other (typically larger) companies they interact with.
Better Customer Experience
No matter if you are primarily PLG or sales-led, automated invoicing and payment processing through the portal also mean that customers can check out what they got charged and what they will be charged easily, reducing the potential for billing disputes and increasing transparency. You don't want to spend time arguing with your customers about why they were charged what when your customer service team is still small and most likely even busy with sales related tasks.

Use Wingback's Self-Service Billing Portal to Provide Best-in-Class UX for Your Customers

Wingback's self-service billing portal is designed to empower SaaS startups to deliver a superior UX that meets the modern customer's expectations for autonomy, flexibility, and efficiency.
Simplifying Subscription Upgrades
One of the standout features of Wingback's billing portal is its capability to enable customers to self-service upgrade their subscriptions effortlessly. Regardless of the complexity of your pricing plan or the number of different pricing models you run in parallel, Wingback ensures a smooth transition for your customers wanting to move to a higher-tier plan. It is designed to handle intricate pricing structures, from per-seat pricing to any usage-based model, ensuring that you can offer your product at the right price and with the perfect pricing model to each customer.
Out-of-the-Box Functionality
As a SaaS startup, your time and resources are always limited. Wingback understands this, which is why its self-serve billing portal comes ready to use out of the box, requiring no additional coding effort. This ease of integration means that you can quickly offer your customers a sophisticated billing management tool, complete with all the functionalities they need to manage their pricing plans and invoices.


For SaaS startups, investing in a self-serve billing portal is an investment in customer satisfaction, operational efficiency, and revenue growth - and it prepares you for the future, too. Whether your startup is PLG-focused or sales-led, a self-serve billing portal helps you to spend less time with meaningless interactions with your customers and gives you more time to focus on those interactions that matter. Make sure to find a solution that seamlessly integrates in your product and which provides you with a UX that matches the quality of the UX of your product. After all, billing UX is basically part of your product UX - so you should care about it as much as you do for the rest of your product.
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