[dropcap1]C[/dropcap1]ustomer analytics for SaaS companies is about reducing churn and increasing lifetime value of your existing customers. While every company looks at acquisition metrics, SaaS vendors must do more because the customer lifecycle begins at the point of web conversion.
A customer that enrolls in a trial or subscription is beginning their relationship with your company. However, your SaaS offering will need to be constantly delivering the value your customer is seeking or you will fail at customer retention.
How do you know if you’re meeting customer expectations?
There is a recent body of research called behavioral economics. In a nutshell, it states that what a customer does, versus what they say, is a truer measure of their satisfaction and intent. This means that a customer who says they are happy in a survey might not actually be happy. Even worse is the customer who never tells you they’re unhappy, and they simply churn.
Customer analytics unlocks the power of this research by enabling SaaS vendors to understand their customers’ actions, focusing on product usage combined with everything else you can know.
How to get started? Make an inventory of all of the data you have about your customers, and ways it can be used.
[dropcap3]1[/dropcap3] Traffic and volume metrics: Attributing customers to the channel that they came through will enable you to find patterns of valuable or less valuable customers.
[dropcap3]2[/dropcap3] Product usage: Logins, modules used, processes run, usage frequency. This tells if your customers are using your product and what parts of it they are engaging with.
[dropcap3]3[/dropcap3] Sales CRM: (when you have a sales-assisted acquisition model): How customers are engaging with your sales and account/customer success managers.
[dropcap3]4[/dropcap3] Support CRM: Issues your customers needed help with. Use it to spot your customer’s frustration with your business.
Purchase & product plans: What your customer purchased and how much they paid. Identifies customer tiers, potential up sells, upcoming renewals and payment status.
[dropcap3]6[/dropcap3] NPS ® (Net Promoter Score ℠): Surveys taken on a subset of your customers to gauge satisfaction. Allows your customers to tell you qualitatively vs. quantitatively if they are happy with your service.
[dropcap3]7[/dropcap3] User comments: In emails, on support forums, or even Tweets. A second data source of customer sentiment that can be tied with NPS and Support CRM.
[dropcap3]8[/dropcap3] Customer intelligence: Key changes within your customer’s organization that could signal potential changes in the stability of your relationship.
Most SaaS companies review metrics from each of these sources independently. Customer Analytics happens when we analyze our customers’ data across multiple touch points. This reveals valuable insights you would have no way identifying if the data remained apart.
Here’s some examples of the insights you get from combining various customer data sets:
[tcol]Flag customers that are up for renewal next quarter and have not used the product lately[/tcol]
[tcol]Contact customers to ensure they adopt and receive value, prior to asking them to renew.[/tcol]
[tcol]Better renewal rates![/tcol]
[tcol]Identify product pages that have increased support activity[/tcol]
[tcol]Work with marketing and UX to improve usability and comprehension of features[/tcol]
[tcol]Decrease call center cost.[/tcol]
[tcol]Product module usage that yields higher NPS scores[/tcol]
[tcol]Inform sales and marketing of value. Share data with PM and UX to create campaigns that promote module usage.[/tcol]
[tcol]Increased renewal rates, satisfaction and loyalty.[/tcol]
Look across all of your customer data, and consider what it means across the lifecycle. The result? Better products and increased revenue.