Customers for SaaS businesses hold all the cards when it comes to the business relationship. Every month or year, they are deciding whether to opt for renewal or simply churn and never come back.
The best way to retain your valuable customers is to offer a fantastic product and superior support. But you should also be aware that SaaS businesses need to invest in proactively offering customer success initiatives.
For customer success managers (CSMs) to be able to handle large volumes of customer relationships, they need specialized software that keeps track of customer health and reduces churn.
What is Customer Success Software?
Customer success software is a tool that is designed to help team members such as customer success managers to manage their day to day activities. It gives CSMs a 360 degree view of the entire customer relationship, and keeps track of where they are throughout the customer lifecycle.
Just like marketeers have their own marketing automation platforms and sales teams have CRM systems that manage their communications with customers, so do customer success teams need their own tools that help customers find value in the software.
Your customer success software brings together all your customer data in one system so you calculate customer health score and analyze activity relating to your SaaS. CS software takes the customer past onboarding, through to adoption, and then renewal and upsell.
What are the Benefits of Customer Success Software?
It’s no good acquiring new customers if you don’t ensure they are successful with your software. It’s like filling a leaky bucket with water – the water will drain away and it’s a waste of time and effort.
When customers are brought into your SaaS business they are being taken on a journey. Customer success software allows your CSMs to make sure your customers keep moving through the journey and bringing in more revenue for the business.
One of the central purposes of customer success software is to allow CSMs to manage higher volumes of customers more effectively. They can take advantage of automations and alerts which allows the system to send out automatic messages to customers who are at risk of churn.
Since your customer success software brings together all your various data sources, your CS managers can spend less time checking all of your different platforms.
Customer Success platforms are smart enough to help CSMs identify which customer they have to focus on today based on a number of parameters including drop in usage. As a result, customer success software has a positive impact on customer engagement and retention. You can take important steps towards reducing churn as well as identifying cross-sell and upsell opportunities.
Features to Look for in Customer Success Software
Modern SaaS companies use multiple third-party software to manage their customers, and the best customer success platforms integrate with that software to bring all your customer data into one place. You’re able to get a 360-degree view from one system, uniting your CRM data, billing systems, support systems, usage data and customer feedback.
Check whether the software that you use is supported by the customer success software.
It’s important to determine whether your customer success software can support a growing team. Your company might be small now, so it won’t make sense for you to invest in an enterprise-grade solution because you’ll be paying for features you don’t need.
Consider how many customers you want to support and the number of seats you need for your customer success managers. Enterprise companies will need a high-level solution with the capability to store lots of data. Pick a solution that can meet your needs now and also expand to accommodate you in the future.
Your customer success managers will be spending a great deal of time interacting with the software and you’ll need to choose a solution that offers amazing usability. It should be easy to view your customer’s data at a glance and set up tasks to be completed in the future.
CSMs need to have a centralized dashboard where they can find all the information necessary to perform their day-to-day activities. Their upcoming tasks, calendar, emails from their customers and support tickets should be available here to help streamline workflows and enable them to help more customers.
Number of customers
We’ve already touched on the fact that the size of your organization should influence what kind of customer success software you should choose. There’s a difference between a CSM with just a few customer accounts who are nevertheless high-value with a sizable annual recurring revenue (ARR), and ones with lots of accounts.
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You’ll need a different sort of solution if your CSMs are supporting a large number of customers with relatively minimal contact. You’ll want to pick a solution that has strong automations which will enable you to prevent customers from churning.
Think About What Level of Touch You Want to Offer
High-touch (more than $100K annual recurring revenue)
SaaS businesses operating on a high-touch model have customers with a very high lifetime value. Each CSM is responsible for between 5-20 accounts and has very frequent interactions with your customers. They have in-depth knowledge of customers and are consistently on hand for customers who are reaching out for help. They will use the customer success software for recording customer details and preparing themselves for customer conversations.
Low-touch ($5,000–$100K annual recurring revenue)
Low-touch customer success models involve CSMs managing between 50 and 200 accounts, and their goal is to intervene with customers before they churn. They are much less likely to have regular interactions with customers compared to the high-touch model, but they tend to act just in time to “save” customers. The customer success software will alert your CSMs to customer risk factors and keep them apprised of customer health score.
No-touch ($100–$5,000 annual recurring revenue)
Some SaaS companies use a model which depends on supporting high volumes of customers with relatively minimal recurring revenue. CSMs are unlikely to be assigned individual accounts, or they may be responsible for hundreds or even thousands of customers. In this case, data would enable CSMs to send automated and personalized messages to customers based on their behavior.
Which Customer Success Software is Best for Your Business?
We’ve got some of the best customer success software solutions out there for you.
First, we have to recommend our very own Churn360. It’s customer success software that is perfect for growing businesses and comes with all the features you’d expect to make your customers successful. Churn360 is AI-driven and helps B2B SaaS companies turn data into actionable insights to reduce churn. You can set up Churn360 within minutes and integrate with all your favorite third-party solutions such as Pipedrive, Chargebee and Freshdesk.
Managing customers for success has never been easier. You can group customers with similar attributes that are available in the system together to help CSMs perform bulk actions, enabling them to look after high volumes of customers. Save even more time with plays that convert your customer success processes into templates, making them reusable and repeatable.
ChurnZero is a real-time customer success platform that enables subscription businesses to reduce customer churn. Their software solutions allow businesses to gain an appreciation of the ways that their customers use their product, and analyze their overall health and their chance of renewing. Businesses also have the ability to personalize the customer experience through appropriate and relevant touchpoints.
ChurnZero brings together anything you might want to know about your customer in a single view. You can enhance your team’s productivity and eliminate manual, repetitive activities that distract your team from what’s most important: your customers.
Totango is aimed at large enterprises with a sizable customer base managed by a big customer success team. It’s an agile customer success software that gives teams the ability to design, run, measure, and scale their SaaS customer journey to retain and grow customers.
The customer journey starts with increasing activation, conversion, and retention of your freemium customers, moving through personalizing the product adoption experience to maximize usage and release additional value, and finally automating the renewal process to enhance customer retention and growth.
Onboarding new customers is just the beginning of your customer’s journey with the customer success team. After the handoff from sales, it’s the responsibility of your CSMs to track the health of your customers and schedule interventions if they are alerted by any risk factors.
Managing this process manually is unsustainable for growing teams, which is why your CSMs need customer success software to help them save time and resources. You’ll have a central portal which you can use to keep eye on all your customer’s data, and a unified dashboard that CSMs can use to stay on top of their day-to-day activities.
Utilize the help of technology to enable your team to analyze the health of customer accounts and program interventions that can prevent churn before it’s too late. Why not try out Churn360 for all your customer success needs?