How to Boost Slow Product Adoption After Onboarding Your Customer

Knowing how to boost product adoption after onboarding is critical for customer retention. Onboarding is a crucial time to provide the training and resources that customers need to make the most out of your product. While many customers might be able to quickly ramp up after onboarding, there will be some customers who are slow to adopt the features needed to achieve first value. These customers run a higher risk of becoming disengaged and churning. Fortunately, if you detect slow product adoption with your customers, there are proactive measures you can take to help turn things around. Here we’ll discuss what product adoption is and why it’s important before sharing three ways you can promote higher adoption after onboarding.

What Is Product Adoption?

Product adoption refers to how actively your customers engage with your product and how much value they derive from using it. A high adoption rate registers through concrete, measurable actions such as:

  • High license utilization in terms of the number of active seats per account
  • Frequent log-ins measured daily, weekly or monthly
  • Frequent usage of specific product features
  • Long duration spent using the product

When product adoption is low, these same metrics will reflect low usage.

In terms of your customer journey, product adoption is the stage in your customer life cycle that follows onboarding and sets the stage for renewal. During the onboarding stage, your customer is getting set up so they can begin deriving value from your product. During the adoption stage, customers actively derive value from your product by engaging with it on a regular basis and experiencing how your product’s basic and advanced features provide them with practical benefits. How much value customers derive during the adoption stage will weigh heavily on their decision to renew or not renew their subscription to your product.

Why Is It Important to Boost Product Adoption?

Promoting product adoption is important for several reasons:


  • Customers who are slow to adopt after onboarding are likely to become disengaged and dissatisfied
  • Customers with low adoption rates are less likely to renew their subscriptions and more likely to churn
  • Customers with low adoption rates are unlikely to promote your brand to others and more likely to become detractors spreading negative reviews of your products

By discouraging engagement, renewals, and referrals, low adoption can lower your revenue. Boosting adoption is imperative for retaining customers and increasing your business.

How Can You Boost Product Adoption?

If your data shows that product adoption rates are low, you can implement a proactive product adoption strategy to increase your numbers. Three of the most important steps you can take are:

  • Engaging in informed customer communication
  • Managing larger customer adoption issues
  • Following up

Let’s look at how you can put each of these steps into action.

Engage in Informed Customer Communication

The way customers engage with your product is constantly changing, even right after product onboarding. The key is understanding whether their new pattern is still appropriate for their business goals.

For example, a customer might have each team member manage a specific function within your product. In this case, you should not focus on individual feature adoption as a metric of success. Instead, you should focus on daily usage and how each team member is driving value. To do this, you will need to know what’s going on behind the customer wall and use what you learn to drive informed customer communications. Without a solid understanding of product consumption at the account and user level, it is very difficult to speed up adoption.


Manage Larger Customer Adoption Issues

Let’s assume the consumption data shows that you have a larger adoption issue. Make sure to figure out the specific reason and the scope so you can develop a focused action plan.

If the problem is a lack of customer training, get proactive and schedule more training time with the specific individuals affected. By only training specific users, you are being respectful of the team’s time and are able to run a more personalized training session. If the problem is a lack of feature awareness or functionalities within the product, arrange an outbound communication or training that shows the customer how they can solve other business needs with your product. Oftentimes, other customers are equally unaware, so building a scalable program around these kinds of initiatives is very valuable.

Make Sure to Follow Up

Don’t expect one phone call or extra training to solve product adoption overnight. You should monitor your customer’s progress over time and reach out with additional support and resources throughout their customer journey. Finding first value will help motivate them to use the product more, but it is up to your team to ensure they keep finding value over time.

If your current process for customers’ product adoption is overwhelming, Totango can help your team focus and prioritize the work with robust customer monitoring and automated tasks and programs. The Increase Product Adoption SuccessBLOC uses automated KPI monitoring to provide you with elevated insight into customer adoption patterns, coupled with automatically triggered workflows to promote desired actions, help customers get the most out of your services, and unlock additional value for users. By automating adoption best practices, you can promote adoption at scale, even if you have a small customer success team compared to the number of customers you support.

Boost Product Adoption to Increase Customer Retention

Product adoption consists of how actively customers engage with your product and how much value they derive from it. High adoption translates into metrics such as high license utilization, log-in rates, and feature usage. When these numbers are high, customers are more likely to renew subscriptions and promote your brand, but when they are low, customers are likely to churn and detract from your reputation.

Steps you can take to increase product adoption include communicating with customers about the reasons behind their usage patterns, promoting training and awareness of product capability, and following up with customers to ensure they’re experiencing value.

Totango’s customer success platform can help you implement these imperatives at scale by providing you with tools to monitor and optimize product adoption. The Increase Product Adoption SuccessBLOC provides built-in KPIs, dashboards, reporting tools, and automated workflows to help you promote adoption at scale for large numbers of customers. Try it free to experience how automation can help you accelerate product adoption to increase your retention and revenue.

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