Intuitively we know that effectively onboarding a new customer is an important part of the overall experience. As consumers, we have come to expect solutions that are easy to adopt and use, so we know that our own customers expect the same from our products. As you build your company and consider how much to invest in the customer journey, how do you quantify the value that an amazing onboarding experience provides to your organization? What are the metrics that matter? Here are 5 outcomes you should consider:
Customers who have spent money on your solution expect to receive value from it quickly. At this point, even in B2B environments, this has become table stakes. The faster your customer can start receiving value from your solution, the more likely they are to renew their agreement, expand their business with you, and recommend you to other potential customers. Invest in the people and technology to speed up the onboarding process, and measure the impact on your retention, expansion, and referral rates.
Clear customer expectations
Part of an amazing onboarding experience includes some discovery. Why did the customer purchase your solution? What are they hoping to achieve with it? What will tell them that they made the right decision? The answers to these questions provide critical information you can use to refine your product and customer journey. Invest in a discovery feedback loop between your onboarding and product teams, and measure the impact on product-market fit and your retention rate.
New expansion opportunities
A common outcome of great onboarding is the discovery of additional selling opportunities. Perhaps the customer would be better off with the next subscription level. Maybe a related product would provide them with even more value. Building an onboarding experience that uncovers opportunities benefits both your customers and your bottom line. Invest in building onboarding processes that drive leads, and measure the impact on expansion revenue and customer satisfaction.
Solid customer relationships
In addition to the technical aspects of onboarding, there is a relationship-building aspect as well. Even if your onboarding process is largely automated, the way you communicate with your new customers is critical to their impression of your company and product. Customers don’t just want to know about the technology, they want to know how to maximize its value. Invest in a strong communication plan during the onboarding process, and measure the impact on product adoption, customer satisfaction and your renewal rate.
Raving fans of your brand
Customers who are happy with your company will talk. In our culture of online reviews, referral programs, and word-of-mouth marketing, an amazing onboarding experience can be a valuable brand asset. This requires designing an onboarding program that doesn’t just meet, but exceeds customer expectations in terms of speed, value or the overall experience. Invest in an onboarding program that goes above and beyond for your customers, and measure the impact on online reviews and referral sales.
An amazing onboarding experience can drive key metrics across the customer lifecycle and your organization, from product and marketing, through sales and support. Drive toward a fast, but exceptional, onboarding process. It may take time to design and build the optimal experience, and you will need to refine it as your company grows. It’s worth the investment.
Founder & CEO of The Success League, a consulting firm focused on customer success. She believes that customer success is the key to driving revenue, client retention and exceptional customer experiences. Prior to founding The Success League, Kristen built and led several award-winning customer success teams. She has published over 60 articles on customer success, and hosts the popular customer success podcast, Strikedeck Radio.