Customer onboarding starts at when an order is placed. And when done correctly, customer onboarding leads to high retention and cross-sell rates. But,
- What is customer onboarding?
- What is project management & what are the stages of project management?
- Why should you use the project management approach for customer onboarding?
In this article, we shine a light on all these things to give you a clear picture.
What Is Customer Onboarding?
Customer onboarding is a process that helps new users and customers comfortable and understand your product. So, if you want to onboard a customer effectively, be sure to give your customers proper guidance, step-by-step tutorials, etc. As mentioned, customer onboarding increases your retention rates.
It is important for the following reasons:
- If you have satisfied customers, you are likely to get more referrals.
- Most of your revenue will come from current customers.
- High customer retention means lower Customer Acquisition Cost and higher revenue.
Today, companies are using Digital Adoption Platforms (DAP) like Ziplyne to optimize the onboarding process.
What Is The Project Management Approach?
Project management is a process that involves planning and using a company’s resources to complete an event, task, or duty. Project management is generally comprised of the following stages:
- Project Initiation: This stage involves defining project goals, stakeholders and creating a business case.
- Project Planning: Involves creating a project plan, drawing up a budget baseline, and setting up roles and responsibilities.
- Project Execution: Involves allocating and managing project resources, building a product or process, and fixing errors as they come up.
- Project Monitoring and Controlling: Involves tracking project progress, effort, and cost. It also involves ensuring plans are being followed, and there are no disruptions.
- Project Closing: This stage involves handing over deliverables, reviewing them, getting the project results approved, and documenting your project learnings.
Why Should You Treat Customer Onboarding As Project Management?
As you know by now, onboarding is vital for a stable and ever-increasing source of revenue. Besides high revenue, it allows you to build trust with your customers over your company’s lifecycle. However, if you want to do this consistently, you will need to incorporate project management into your onboarding process. Here’s why:
Scope of work
Every project has a clear start and end. This is how you should treat your customer or employee onboarding. With the project management approach, you will have a fundamental understanding of the project, which means you will know what activities the project involves, the time for completion, and the expected deliverables at the end of the project. Besides, you can document everything so that your customers or employees know what to expect.
Standardization for scaling
As your business grows, you will need to put processes in place to help scale your business. Project management plays a vital role in standardization. With project management, you can measure your progress and add specific milestones.
When you begin an onboarding project, you can expect to make several changes. You may have your clients pitching a new idea or a feature they want you to incorporate, and so on. With a project management approach, you have the provision to identify, document, and rectify these changes effectively.
When you carry out a customer onboarding project, you need to know how long it will take to complete it. When you use the project management approach for onboarding, you will determine which activity in this project takes the most time. You will be able to assign timelines, allocate resources, track your project activities, and record the data you have to optimize your future customer or employee onboarding processes.
Doing so will help you find out if you are charging adequately. With an optimized onboarding process, you will also be able to increase your customer retention.
How Do You Optimize Your Onboarding Projects?
As mentioned above, how well you onboard your customers will determine your chances of retaining them in the long run. But, how can you best onboard them? Here are a few things you can do:
Explain your product in detail
Your customers or visitors might know the gist of your product(s). However, most of them probably do not know all the features of your products, the best ways to use them, what they should avoid, and much more. In other words, you ought to give them a complete overview of your product. Consider shooting a video or series of videos to give them a product tour. Concise blog pieces can be just as effective.
This tip is critical. In the age of content and instant information, people do not have the time to sift through multiple pages and links to look for what they want. If you want to up your chances of onboarding them, take customer feedback seriously and make sure your content solves their problems.
Follow up with your customers properly
While getting your customers to buy a product or two is a good goal to have, your business will almost completely depend on retaining your customers. This is why it is vital to follow up with your customers. When your customers make a purchase, send them a short note of appreciation. You can also send them follow-up emails to help them use your product or service. Finally, follow up and get your customers to sign up for a referral program.
And there you have it. This is how you treat your customer onboarding process as project management and optimize it. Today, many companies use DAPs like Ziplyne to simplify the process of onboarding.
In fact, according to Gartner, “By 2025, 70% of organizations will use digital adoption solutions across the entire technology stack to overcome still insufficient application user experiences.”