How to Optimize Customer Retention for B2B Enterprises
As part of a successful B2B enterprise, you understand the importance of your customers. New customer acquisition is at the heart of most traditional business models. In the customer-centered economy, however, retained customers are as good as gold.
You may have heard that it’s five times more expensive to acquire a new customer than it is to retain a current one. This is because not only do you have to find and reach a new customer but you also have to walk them through the sales funnel. The entire process is expensive and time-consuming. When you make customer retention for B2B business models a priority, you’ll not only save money on acquisition costs; you’ll also unlock the growth potential of your existing customer base. Let’s explore why customer retention for B2B is so important and how you can make it happen.
How to Increase Customer Retention for B2B Companies
Existing customers are more likely to try new products or buy additional services since they already trust your brand and know that your product provides value. If you properly engage these customers and help them succeed, you’ll increase loyalty and customer lifetime value. While you should continue seeking out new customers, your base of existing customers is invaluable for long-term success and revenue growth. That’s why B2B business models should make customer retention a high priority.
When you have many customers and departments, it can be hard to organize workflows. It’s also hard to ensure there’s a Customer Success Manager (CSM) assigned to every account and that key events in the customer journey receive the proper response. Organizations need an easy way to get their teams and processes organized. Not to mention, everyone—from sales to renewal teams—needs to access customer data and account histories.
Here are some tips for boosting customer retention for B2B organizations:
- Improve Communication: Take a good look at organization-wide communication, such as how information is being shared across teams. It’s especially important that teams communicate fully and clearly every time a customer moves to a new stage of their journey, such as when sales passes a new customer onto the onboarding team. These hand-offs require that all customer data is gathered and shared. Good communication practices also mean that standard workflows are clearly defined—both within the CS team and across the organization.
- Consolidate and Share Data: While on the subject of improving communication, think about how your enterprise internally accesses customer data. Does your team have to log into multiple systems to see all of a customer’s information? This makes it harder for CS team members to get a full picture of a customer’s history and could lead to poor decision-making. Make sure teams have all of a customer’s history available within a single interface at every interaction and that all members of your organization can access customer data. This will make your organization more customer-centered, raise customer satisfaction rates, and help you make proactive engagements.
- Identify Product Usage Trends and Track KPIs: One of the most important areas to watch is how customers use your product. Use it to uncover important product usage trends and take proactive action. How many customers log into the product and at what times of the day or week? How often do new customers use it? What about existing customers? Are certain features used less than others? If so, are there any open escalation tickets about those features? If you do have escalation tickets, study them carefully to see if they reveal any patterns. By learning about product use, you can preemptively resolve problems and identify areas that need improvement.
- Enable an Early Warning System: Rather than attempting to monitor customer progress manually, use software that includes an early warning system. Such a system will identify significant trends and alert CS teams members of at-risk customers or customers who are doing particularly well. It will also give guidance on how to proceed based on the specific situation.
- Give Teams the Right Support: Think about what each team can do to raise retention rates. Talk to or survey your teams and learn how you can better support each division. How can you help accounting keep payments on track, monitor contract compliance, and track licenses? How can you help the sales team increase the number of licenses or upsells? Is there a way to help marketing segment customers for case studies or reference testimonials? By helping teams do their jobs more effectively, you can better support every stage of the customer journey, which quickly improves retention.
- Leverage Voice of Customer Data: It is critical that you listen to your customers and learn from their feedback. Be sure to collect Voice of Customer (VoC) feedback and use this information to streamline your standard processes or enhance the product.
- Iterate: In order to increase revenue in today’s economy, your enterprise needs to be flexible and agile. Be sure you’re continuously analyzing data, updating processes, and testing out new engagement strategies.
Try these tips to help raise retention and enable customer-centricity. Boosting customer retention only happens if you have the capability to target campaigns, call out important features, track metrics, and more.
Retain Customers for Life
Effective customer retention for B2B enterprises can be overwhelming if you have numerous customers or multiple product lines. Customer success software offers the functionalities you need so you can easily take charge of all your accounts.
The best customer success software helps you standardize practices, identify effective strategies for boosting retention, and take action on those top strategies. It collects real-time data from many sources and presents them within a single view that is accessible to all members of your organization. This visibility makes it easy to track metrics, share data across your enterprise, and find patterns. Plus, the right software makes it easy to set goals, create actionable steps, and measure progress.
Retaining customers offers a way to expand revenue without acquisition costs. Start retaining them for life and get your enterprise on the path to long-term customer retention.
Totango offers customer success software designed to help you increase customer retention. When you explore Spark, you’ll see how you can track important metrics and set up an early warning system. To learn how you can use Spark to guide customers through every step of the journey, request a demo today.