Improve your customer feedback programs to reduce churn
By Jasper Lipton, Alchemer Senior Product Marketing Manager, and Vanessa Bagnato, Alchemer Director of Product Marketing
Customers leave. That’s just part of life and business. However, U.S. companies lose $136.8 billion or more each year to consumers switching that is completely avoidable. Meanwhile, the Microsoft Americas Partner Team found loyal customers are 5 times as likely to repurchase, 5 times as likely to forgive, 4 times as likely to refer, and 7 times as likely to try a new offering.
This leads to three very difficult questions:
- How do you know a customer is at risk?
- How do you get accurate feedback from your customers?
- Are you getting feedback at critical touch points to save a customer?
Why is understanding churn so painful?
Problem 1: You don’t know when a customer is at risk
Most people think that only low customer satisfaction scores churn, but we found that customers giving passive scores churn more often. You need to automatically identify all scores that are not promoters and follow up with those customers to see what you can do better.
Problem 2: You lack the ability to understand churn through the voice of the customer
Getting feedback directly from frustrated customers isn’t easy. Most companies rely on their account, CX, or support teams to provide insights into why accounts were lost. However, that’s not the same as hearing directly from the customer. You need to find ways to empower and encourage customers to provide unfiltered, authentic insights that reflect their experiences, preferences, and pain points. This first-hand feedback will tell you why customers are leaving and how current customers in similar positions can be saved.
Problem 3: You miss vital customer feedback at critical touch points
Without a way to collect feedback in context of their precise situation, and without the ability to connect customer records from your CRM to customer exit surveys, any business will struggle to comprehensively understand customer experiences and concerns. For example, if you make your product easier to use, you need to check in with all of your customers to make sure they can still get what they want and need. Otherwise, you miss key opportunities to salvage customer relationships before they churn.
How Alchemer helps you collect critical and timely feedback to save customers
Alchemer helps sales and sales operations teams build programs that collect feedback from customers that are highly likely to churn. You can set up your feedback program in the Alchemer Platform to listen to events in your CRM solution and then automatically request feedback from the customer. The results give customer-facing teams the information they need to identify savable customers and act on the feedback by responding to the customer to save that piece of business.
When a customer gives notice of cancellation, you can ask them to take a survey about how they are feeling and why. New survey responses are automatically shared with the right stakeholders, such as sales directors or the account manager. If, based on the survey results, the Sales Team deems the customer can be saved, they can take action to salvage the customer relationship. In addition, the insights collected in the survey can be routed to the right department to make meaningful product and service improvements.
Discover Why Customers Churned
Asking the right questions can be critical here. You want to know why they are cancelling so you can address their concerns. This means using skip logic to ask more in-depth questions, such as, “You mentioned price as a reason for your cancellation, which of the following best describes your concerns as it relates to the price of the product?” Then you route this information to the right people so they can act on that feedback to save the customer.
Understand Why Accounts Were Saved
This survey can help you understand both their dissatisfaction and how you remedied the situation. Ask any questions that you feel would give you a better understanding of why they considered leaving and decided to stay. Good questions to ask here include:
• What changed your mind?
• How can we help you get the most out of our product going forward?
• Which new feature(s) would you most like to see?
Learn What You Can Do in the Future
This survey can help you understand what it will take to win them back next year, or how your company can improve to prevent this happening in the future. Ask any questions you feel would give you a better understanding of why they left or went elsewhere. Good questions to ask in this survey include:
• Would you consider us in the future?
• What can we improve on?
Automate feedback collection, and take instant action
With Alchemer, you can quickly and easily connect multiple surveys to automate how you collect information around customer churn. You can set it up to listen for events in your CRM, initiate messages in Slack and email to your sales and support teams, as well as distribute and collect the surveys. It improves the regularity of your VoC program without impacting your people’s productivity.
How it all comes together
Here’s an example of how the Alchemer suite of products helps you better understand customer churn and what you can do about it:
- Alchemer integrates with your CRM then listens for status changes, such as deciding not to renew.
- As soon as a customer is recorded as will not renew, Alchemer automatically sends a targeted survey to the customer, requesting insights into their reasons.
- Alchemer automatically routes the feedback to the relevant teams—sales, account teams, and support, for example.
- Alchemer instantly updates the account records in your CRM, so you can analyze your data all in one place.
- From there, you can easily dig into feedback, identify the options to keep the customer or make the offboarding experience as pain-free as possible for everybody involved.
With survey distribution and data collection on autopilot, you get an immediate, holistic view of what caused your customer to churn, whether you can save that relationship, and the steps you can take to reduce churn in the future.
The result: improved retention, better customer insights, and higher customer satisfaction
By acting quickly on feedback, the Sales Team can try and save renewal opportunities that are at risk. This simple act can often improve retention rates. Even when a customer cannot be saved, you can profit from their experience. Exit surveys often gather more candid feedback from departing customers than direct questioning, with less bias and interpretation. Additionally, by including customer information in the exit survey and responding quickly to reasons customers give for cancellation, customers feel known and heard by the company. In this way, customers who stay will have a better impression of the company, while customers who leave even after speaking to sales may have a higher chance of returning at a later point.
Already an Alchemer customer? Here’s how to set up this workflow.
Not a customer yet? Request a demo here.