We’ve learned why online self-service is the answer to the modern software sales dilemma. Providing self-service tools helps empower modern software buyers to make independent decisions about what to use and how. But while self-service has the obvious benefit of increasing customer satisfaction, it also has some unexpected ripple effects. These include a new boost for sales and marketing, valuable data for everyone in the organization, and better alignment between channels. Here’s a little more about each benefit.
1. Sales and Marketing Shine in New Ways
For too long, marketing has had trouble tying its activities directly to revenue. But self-service allows companies to link customer activity more closely to marketing efforts. It’s easier to see which webinars drive downloads and which emails spark more usage – or even convince customers to upgrade. A clearer link between marketing efforts and customer activity helps marketing shine and show its true value.
Sales likewise benefits from the self-service channel, which provides it with a pipeline of unique “usage-qualified leads” that are clearly interested in the product, able to use it, and very likely to upgrade or expand their usage in the future. This makes sales’ job much easier – not only do salespeople know that these leads are interested in the product, they also know exactly how they’ve used the product, and how they can guide these customers to achieve additional success.
2. Data Streams Build into Performance Waterfalls
In addition to helping sales and marketing perfect their game, the mass amounts of data generated by self-service tools boost performance across the organization. Whether it’s time spent on a particular feature that tells the product team to focus, or tricky maneuvering around free trial rules that shows finance where the bottom line stands, self-service provides a wealth of data about real user behavior that aids all departments – without overtaxing any of them.
3. Channel Alignment Streamlines Operations
Although channel sales can sometimes get neglected in a SaaS-focused company, self-service is actually a fantastic way to strengthen any sales channel. By identifying and promoting the features and offers that appeal most to users in a particular channel, channel sales partners can get greater leverage out of a product and increase returns significantly. It’s an easy way for each channel to become better at what it does best.
There you have it: self-service is a major advantage throughout the organization, from sales and marketing to product and finance – even in the channels. Plus we hear customers like it too. Stay tuned to learn more about how you can actually put self-service tools into action.