“You will never get a second chance to make a first impression.” – Will Rogers
While effective customer onboarding in SaaS is the best way to make a great first impression, it has the potential to be much more. Think about it: the most common reasons for churn in SaaS are that customers don’t understand the product well enough, and they don’t see any value in it. Customer onboarding done right can solve both of these issues, besides saving you time and effort in the support phase.
Onboarding is tricky since all customers are unique and have their own definitions of success depending on their business, team, or use case. Consequently, no two onboarding plans will ever look the same. However, they all need meticulous planning for each aspect and stage of the onboarding process. It is especially important in high-touch or concierge onboarding with multiple touchpoints — where missing (or messing) even one of them could jeopardize the entire project.
There can never be a one-size-fits-all approach to customer onboarding. Customizing onboarding experiences to the needs of each customer can be daunting. However, an effective onboarding experience combines a solid first-principles approach and best practices with individual customer needs.
The best way to do this is to plan and design the onboarding process for each customer thoroughly. A good tool to have at this stage would be a checklist that makes sure you cover all aspects and phases of the process — both at your end and the customer’s end.
We have put together an onboarding checklist covering all aspects of the process, from project goals, scoping, and methodology to change management, stakeholder management, documentation, and communication.
If you’re looking to develop an onboarding plan, this 20-point checklist is a great starting point. If you already have an onboarding plan in place, use this checklist to see if it covers the five elements of successful customer onboarding.
Once you’ve completed your onboarding, review the checklist. Ask the team what worked and what didn’t, and tweak the checklist based on their feedback.
No matter how good your solution, if your customers don’t get around to using it, they’ll never know for themselves. We hope this checklist helps you plan and improve your customer onboarding to help you deliver the maximum value to your customers each time, every time.
We've put together a sample template for you to get started with your onboarding project. Get it here. You'll find customizable sample plans for small, medium, and enterprise businesses.
Rocketlane, a collaborative platform purpose-built for customer onboarding, allows for creating and assigning checklists to the individuals concerned. Give it a spin!