For some companies, client onboarding means sending a quick welcome email as soon as a contract is signed and hoping for the best. Failing to create a comprehensive onboarding strategy that begins the moment you bring in a new client is setting you and the client up for failure, frustration, and disappointment. In many cases, it’s also setting you up to lose that client, and chances are they will go to a competitor.
If you spend a lot of time and money trying to bring in new customers because you cannot retain the ones you have, turning that around starts with an excellent onboarding strategy.
Make it Personal
The onboarding process usually begins when the sales process ends. During the sales process, your team probably spent a lot of time and energy making sure the client was happy, keeping in touch, making a connection. Make sure clients don’t feel like they are just a number once they sign the contract—or worse, never hear from anyone again. Create an onboarding strategy that allows clients to feel heard, valued, and understood, and outlines a plan to achieve their unique and specific goals.
One easy way to make the experience more personal is to have a point of contact that coordinates everything so they don’t get lost in the system. Send your clients a welcome email either from that point of contact or with that person’s information.
Make it Clear
Onboarding is also an opportunity to make sure you deliver exactly what the client expects based on the contract they signed. The most successful onboarding processes clearly define the scope of a contract, outline all the deliverables and timelines, and allow for questions and clarification before the project begins. When things are vague or undefined, or there is never a chance to discuss the scope of work before it starts, the end result is often an angry client on one side and an exasperated team on the other.
Make it Easy for Clients
Your clients shouldn’t have to work hard on what they should be doing in the onboarding process. You can make it easy by giving them step-by-step guidance on what will happen throughout the process, and clear instructions with access to all the resources they need every step of the way.
It’s also important to strike a balance between not enough and too much information. Give them helpful resources to understand your process, such as a welcome email with instructions and links, but don’t overwhelm them with daily emails that include multiple links to blog posts, whitepapers, case studies, and online resources that would take them hours to review.
We’ll discuss more about building the best client onboarding strategy in Part 2 on this blog, but if you are ready to learn more about how the GuideCX platform will automate and streamline your entire onboarding process, schedule a demo with us today.