The fundamentals of Customer Success are not new, the general concept has been around for some time, but current practices suggest that something more profound is happening across the industry. There is broad recognition that helping customers adopt and apply products successfully will help retain and build customer relationship value.
Top 10 Customer Success Facts
- Customer success is not a one-sized-fits-all methodology and there is no right or wrong way to apply the principles of customer success provided that the outcome from success initiatives result in the ability to sustain and grow customer relationships.
- Customer Success is a series of interrelated activities performed throughout the customer relationship lifecycle. Effective customer success initiatives include activities from onboarding to expansion with an emphasis on assuring that customers successfully use your products and renew their relationship with you.
- Customer Success reports to the CEO or Chief Customer Officer a quarter of the time (22.6%). Typically, Customer Success is organized within an existing department, and most often within Service or Support (57.0%), sometimes Sales (16.1%) and least likely within Marketing (4.3%).
- The primary customer success Key Performance Indicators (KPI) are strategic with an emphasis on the health and value of customer relationships. The top customer success KPIs include customer sentiment as measured by customer satisfaction or NPS; recurring revenue, and retention.
- 60 percent of the time the group responsible for establishing a new relationship is not responsible for the ongoing account relationship.
- Less than half (41.5%) of companies provide formal onboarding services. Those that do are most likely to assure that customers can access and use the product or service they have purchased.
- When account resources are included with product purchase, they are often provided to fulfil vendor-focused objectives (e.g. onboarding, adoption, retention and expansion).
- The responsibilities for customer retention and recurring revenue are seldom shared across multiple post-sales teams and are most often the burden of a single department.
- The most common metric used to evaluate Customer Success team performance is customer sentiment expressed as satisfaction and/or NPS, yet half of companies indicate that they do not actively track formal Customer Success metrics.
- Less than half of companies have tools to enable core success activities. The majority of companies that indicate use of specific success systems built their own solution often based on their existing CRM infrastructure.