How to Decrease Churn Rates by Improving Time-to-Value

By Harris Clarke
May 11, 2020

Happy customers will usually stick with you, while unhappy customers will usually leave to do business with one of your competitors. The rate that customers leave is referred to as “churn,” and the higher your churn rate, the more time, money, and effort your sales team has to spend on bringing in new business. It’s a well-known fact that client retention is less expensive than new client acquisition, but many companies don’t realize how early in the process a customer decides whether they are happy. It’s often very early—during onboarding—when you need to show a client why your product is valuable and can help them achieve their goals.


Understand and Quantify Your Churn Rate

The first step toward reducing churn rates is understanding and quantifying it. We won’t go into a lot of detail here, but this article discusses ways to measure churn, and why it’s important to use the right metric based on your company and industry. You should also do some benchmarking to make sure your churn rates aren’t unusually high (which could indicate a much larger problem with your sales or product).


Start Early to Reduce Churn Rates

Once you know your churn rates, the next step is to have a strategy in place to keep them as low as possible, starting with onboarding. That is your first interaction with your new client outside of a sales process, and it sets the stage for how the client will view you and your products for the long-term. You may even be working with an entirely different group of people than your sales team did if the person who made the decision and signed the contract isn’t the person who is going to use the software every day. The onboarding process is like a second sales pitch where you need to sell the users on features, services, and value.


Speed Up Time-to-Value

One of the best ways to impress your new clients and set the stage for a long and successful relationship is by shortening time-to-value (TTV). Early in the process of implementation, the customer curiosity, attention, and excitement are at an all-time high. Capitalize on that excitement and engagement by getting them to their first win as quickly as possible:

  • Use information from your sales team to understand why a customer purchased your product, and what they hope to achieve
  • Cater their onboarding experience to get them to that point as fast as you can
  • Show them your plan and timeline for onboarding (and stick to it)
  • Communicate regularly about onboarding progress
  • Give them tasks to keep them engaged so onboarding doesn’t feel like they were handed off from sales and forgotten

Reducing churn is about getting your clients to the point where they know your product is solving a problem and they can easily integrate into their own workflows. Onboarding is your chance to show them, and the right onboarding tools from GuideCX can help you get there. Schedule a demo today to find out more.

Harris Clarke

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