Have you ever had a conversation with a friend where you both thought you were on the same page, only to find out that the other person was talking about something completely different and you both had very divergent views of what you heard and said?
Now imagine that same conversation, but with much higher stakes because it’s a new client who just signed a contract to work with you. If you are not on the same page about all the aspects of your partnership, what started out as a promising and profitable business relationship can quickly devolve into disappointment and frustration on both sides.
Having the right client onboarding process in place can help you avoid all that frustration and potentially keep more of your clients in the long term. Here are just a few reasons you should be focused on onboarding.
Retention Costs a Lot Less than Acquisition
Many businesses focus a lot of time and money on acquisition, and bringing in new clients is certainly an important part of any successful company. However, once someone signs a contract to work with you, maintaining that relationship is a lot less expensive than constantly needing new customers.
In fact, client acquisition could cost up to 16 times more than what it costs to cultivate loyalty and retain an existing client. When you lose a client, whether they actively cancel or just don’t renew a contract, almost 90% will go to one of your competitors.
Successful Long-Term Relationships Start Early
No matter what industry you are in or what type of products or services you offer, the seeds for a successful relationship are often planted early in the process. The reasons for “churn” (losing existing customers and needing new ones to remain profitable) can vary, and you won’t be able to keep every client. For example, when someone’s needs change and your product or service no longer works for them, there isn’t anything you can do to prevent them from leaving.
For many companies, though, clients leave because you either didn’t meet expectations or didn’t provide clear value and ROI. In both of these situations, a proper onboarding process can help. Streamlining and standardizing onboarding:
- Sets clear expectations for everyone based on the contract
- Identifies all the deliverables that you will provide, as well as any information about things the client should do or provide in that process
- Includes timelines for every step along the way
- Creates channels for clear communication and transparency in the process
Check out Part 2 of this blog post to learn more about why onboarding is so critical for client relations and success.
If you’re ready to get started now, contact us to schedule a demo and find out how GuideCX is setting the new standard for the client onboarding process.