At the center of every business, regardless of the industry, are customers. When provided with exceptional service, customers can quickly become loyal brand advocates. At the opposite end of the spectrum are customers that believe the experience they received was substandard. In today’s environment, even one poor interaction can result in churn. Since acquiring a new customer can cost five times more than retaining an existing one, businesses are embracing customer experience initiatives across their entire organization and using it as a competitive differentiator. This leads us to ask: Can cloud billing automation be one way to help reduce churn and provide customers with the experience they expect?
Customers Expect Exceptional Experiences Across Your Organization
Before we answer, let’s delve a bit deeper into the benefits of delivering experiences that exceed your customers’ expectations, as well as the potential outcomes of poor customer experiences.
- Increasing customer retention by 5% can improve profits by up to an impressive 95%.
- The success rate of selling to an existing customer is 60-70%, while the probability of selling to a new customer is just 5-20%.
- Loyal customers are 5x as likely to repurchase, 5x as likely to forgive, 4x as likely to refer, and 7x as likely to try a new product or service.
- 33% of customers will consider switching companies after just one instance of poor service, rising to 60% when receiving 2-3 poor service experiences.
As you can see, ensuring positive customer experiences is vital to the financial health of your business. Today, 89% of companies see customer experience as a key factor in driving customer loyalty and retention, and ultimately profitability.
Cloud Billing Automation Can Be Your Differentiator
Customers interact with virtually every business unit within your organization, which can either make or break the customer experience. However, one area that’s often overlooked in managing and improving customer experiences is your financial departments.
Receiving an inaccurate invoice is a reason for many customers to sit up and take notice. To avoid snafu’s such as this – and other billing errors, companies across the globe are migrating their billing systems to the cloud in order to deliver the kind of customer experiences that can only happen with cloud billing automation.
The first step in your quest to retain customers is to migrate your billing processes to the cloud. If you haven’t already done so, read our blog – How to Automate The Billing Process. It’ll help you determine if now’s the time to automate and move your billing processes to the cloud. Additionally, it describes the many benefits you can expect to achieve.
If you’re already handling your billing processes in the cloud, you are one step closer to reaping its numerous benefits. While there are countless cloud-based billing solutions on the market, there are only a few vendors that take the customer experience into consideration.
How Optimizing the User Experiences Will Improve the Customer Experience
Regardless of the function, your financial teams are under tremendous pressure. Eliminating redundant and manual tasks not only frees up their time, but helps to reduce billing-related errors. This improves the customer experience.
When it comes to cloud billing automation, the billing platform needs to enable users to quickly and easily navigate the system, customize billing to meet your unique needs, and effortlessly deploy the pricing tactics that your customers desire. This is why when shopping for a cloud-based billing system it must provide the functionality to:
- Reduce the required number of clicks: Allow users to quickly and easily revisit previously viewed pages, as well as hierarchical data structures. Intuitive page hierarchies eliminate the need to click through countless pages to find a specific one, improving navigation.
- Incorporate lookups and filters: A search feature that predicts and auto-populates suggestions based on user inputs, enabling users to obtain what they need more efficiently, saving significant time.
- Enable multi-tab browsing: With the ability to open multiple tabs that are connected to the same instance of the billing platform, users can open any link in a new tab, including those recently viewed.
- Create drag-and-drop page layouts: Using configurable, multi-column layouts, users can create intuitive views of customer details and maximize the amount of information presented.
- Improve mobile and tablet responsiveness: Automatically adjust the screen size, enhancing the ability of users and customers alike to interact with the billing platform using their mobile or tablet devices.
- Format region-specific numeric and currency fields: Allow users to define how currencies and values appear within the user interface for more convenient location-based formatting.
- Simplify complex subscription pricing schemes: Provide the ability to establish co-terms to sync subscription renewal dates, implement mid-cycle subscription quantity changes, and mediate high volumes of usage data.
What do these seven features have in common? At first glance, the majority appear to be user-based only. However, each reduces manual effort, greatly minimizing the risk of errors – which of course improves the customer experience.
Improve the Customer Experience with Cloud Billing Automation
While the above identifies the features needed to reduce time spent on billing tasks, enabling you to reduce customer-facing errors, there are other considerations when selecting a cloud-based billing solution. Since no two companies are alike, your requirements may be different than even your closest competitor. There are, however, seven questions that you need to ask yourself in order to clarify your automated billing requirements.
BillingPlatform provides one of the most sophisticated, yet easy-to-use cloud-based billing solutions on the market today. Designed to be future-proof, our unmatched agility enables you to extend the platform without time-consuming coding. With BillingPlatform, you’re able to make changes quickly and effortlessly, enabling you to meet ever-changing business and customer needs. Not to mention you’ll deliver the type of customer experience that drives loyalty. Ready to learn more? Request a free BillingPlatform test drive to see it for yourself.