When it comes to operating a SAAS company, it’s critical that the right support is available to customers after they’ve initially signed up. Engaging in the SAAS model, these customers are paying for your service every month and so it’s essential you can maintain their satisfaction with your business on every level.
SAAS customer support is particularly important, because this is the area in which your customers will reach out at the time they are most vulnerable and in need of help. In fact, in many instances, the quality of customer support received will influence the future of the working relationship. Nobody wants to work with a company that takes their money without helping them to use their service properly or at the very least, make the most of it.
With all this in mind, it’s easy to see why meeting the expectations of your SAAS customers is so important to the ongoing success of your business. Remember, their satisfaction links directly to your bottom line!
In this blog, we explore the modern customer’s expectations of a SAAS customer support function and why it’s so important to meet and exceed them for commercial success.
This is an obvious one, but valid nonetheless, when customers have a problem, they want to speak to someone ASAP. They don’t want to be waiting on the phone listening to the same 30 seconds of music on repeat, they don’t want to be sat there watching the queue number for live chat and they don’t want to be twiddling their thumbs waiting for an email response. Immediacy is the name of the game when it comes to delivering good customer support and so it’s critical that you can service their needs fast.
Failure to respond quickly, may lead customers to escalating the problem and taking action, potentially leading to them looking at alternative solutions provided by your competitors.
It should go without saying, but customers appreciate being kept in the loop, particularly around events that impact their ability to use the service they’re paying for, the way it’s supposed to work.
With this in mind, it makes sense to offer proactive customer notifications when something is set to occur that may impact them or when something is set to change.
If you can give your customers the information they need, before they know they need it, you have a great opportunity to regularly impress and show you genuinely care about their custom.
Of course, to achieve this, you must have the systems in place that help you recognize what customers want in the first place. These needs to take into account data points including common online customer behavior, customer surveys and customer engagement histories, these will all inform a proactive support strategy and help ensure you share the information that really matters, before it’s actually needed.
Many companies ask customers for feedback regularly, but there is often a feeling that it is nothing but an empty gesture. Detailed surveys are regularly sent out to customers to give the impression there’s a proactive approach in place, when in reality, very little ever changes.
In order to develop a high quality SAAS customer support function, it’s important that feedback is not only regularly collected and reviewed, but that it is also used for the basis of improvement and is then communicated effectively to customers.
This is particularly important in the SAAS model as the average relationship with your customers is likely to be ongoing over several years. As such, the opportunity to take feedback, act on it and then communicate changes is crucial. When done well, feedback can be utilized to show customers that their opinions are regularly listened to and are important.
The modern customer engages with companies through a variety of different channels. In fact, in many cases, customers will initiate a single conversation across multiple touch points and staff.
For example, they may begin their customer support journey by launching live chat on your website and take advice from there, that may not work, and then they’ll decide to contact on social media for further advice, and if that also fails too, they’re likely to follow up with a more direct approach and call your customer support helpline.
As they engage across these channels, the operative on the other end needs to be able to understand what previous engagement the customer has experienced, what the outcome of each of those previous conversations were and have an appreciation of the context for the latest engagement. This is critical to maximizing the efficiency of your support function and avoiding repetition . The best SAAS customer support operations record and store customer engagements in a centralized location so they can be accessed when and where necessary, irrespective of the channel the customer chooses to engage through.
With this information on hand, your customer support team can quickly understand why your customer is making contact, and the wider situation around their challenges. This is integral to delivering high quality customer support at a reasonable cost.
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Most customers, particularly those engaging with the SAAS business model (typically digitally savvy) want to start their support engagement online. In fact, if it was up to them, they’d like to solve their problem without ever needing to engage with a human – and from a budgetary and efficiency standpoint, you should be looking for ways to meet this need. After all, if you can avoid the need for human input to solve their problems, you can reduce the cost it incurs to your business, maximizing profitability.
But, to achieve this ambition, you need to develop the resources that will help them, help themselves. This may take the form of a FAQ that hosts the answers to common queries, or something more substantial, like ‘How-to’ content, best practice blogs and video tutorials.
By creating these assets and an infrastructure that makes them easy to find, you can ensure your customers can quickly seek out the information they need to solve their problems. This is an easy way to reduce support costs, empower your customers to find what they need quickly and to give customers choice in how they engage with your company.
- Fast access to assistance
- Proactive support
- To engage across multiple channels
- To start their support engagement online
- To see companies react to their feedback
Your customers will have predetermined expectations of your company when they choose to first engage, and so it’s critical you can not only meet their needs, but when they need you most, exceed them .
This will play a critical role in you ability to extend customer lifetime and maximize customer profitability in both the short and long term.
The average modern customer expects a lot from the service organizations they engage with and so it’s up to you to find a way to meet these expectations in order to avoid customer churn and optimize their satisfaction. Failure to do so will not only leave your customers dissatisfied, but also likely to look at alternatives, impacting your bottom line and overall company success.