Back in November 2021, we released the PLG Index. The PLG Index was the top private B2B software companies based on: 

  • Offering a freemium or trial product: Allowing a user to start using the product friction-free from a paywall or interaction
  • Offering transparent pricing: At least one of their pricing stages gave a price, even if the enterprise edition might say something like “contact sales.” 

We then cut these companies by: 

  • Valuation: Crunchbase or Pitchbook as our systems of record
  • Success score: A way to look at their recent momentum with some secret sauce in it

Since launching, we have added over 500 companies to the index, and the list grows every day. If you believe your company fits the criteria and isn’t on the list, please add it at the bottom of the page here

The Public PLG Index

The #1 search we have received since launching the PLG Index was for public B2B SaaS companies that would fit in this framework. Today, I’m excited to say we have launched it with the help of Public Comps data. 

There are 112 Public B2B SaaS companies. Based on our PLG Index criteria, laid out above, 43 of them are PLG, 65 are non-PLG, and then we also gave distinction to 4 companies that are PLG but are conglomerates in a way that they skew our data if we include them (Microsoft, Intuit, Salesforce, and Adobe). 

Given how much data the public markets throw off, there are a lot of fascinating ways you can compare PLG and non-PLG public SaaS companies.

Public PLG (43) v Non-PLG (65) B2B SaaS Companies (median data):

  1. PLG companies have 23% more ARR
  2. PLG companies are growing ARR Y/Y 30% faster
  3. PLG companies have 8% higher Net Dollar Retention
  4. PLG companies have 22% higher ARR/Headcount
  5. PLG companies are 44% off their 52 week high, Non-PLG companies are 58% off their 52 week high

The numbers would be slightly more skewed in favor of the PLG companies if we added the conglomerates, which was another reason, in our opinion, to leave them out. You can also now cut the PLG Index by categories, private, public, or random company: 

Different ways to cut PLG data

What Does The Public PLG Index Tell Us? 

The market has spoken. When you look at this data, PLG is creating bigger and more profitable companies that are also holding up better in the public markets as SaaS valuations come down. The only reason you wouldn’t have a PLG motion is that you were born and built in a different era. We believe every company built today will have a motion that matches the criteria above. That is what shareholders want, that is what customers want, and the best revenue and product teams are delivering on these expectations.

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