“80% of customers demand new consumption models including subscribing, sharing, and leasing – anything except actually buying a product outright.” – The Economic Intelligence Unit.
The new age of the subscription economy has brought with it novel ways of customer service and product delivery. Today, there’s an unprecedented growth in the subscription-based businesses, including technology and media.
With changing times, the products have also evolved. Now we are into virtualization, where services are sold on the pay-per-use model. Software as a service and other cloud deployment models have given rise to recurring revenue generation – a subscription business model. This shift to the cloud has been driven by the dynamism of the customer behavior.
Customers are changing the way they buy, thus, the cloud and other subscription service providers also need to change the way they sell.
The transition to the cloud has also brought with it the complexities of managing the sales of cloud-based services. This also brings in the need of cloud sales management software that can complement the rising needs of managing sales.
The new demands of sales in cloud and subscription economy:
- What makes sale different here is the recurring model. The customer who has opted for a subscription model of business, has completely different expectations from a service provider, contrary to a one-time product based model of business.This is because the customer’s idea of value has now changed. He is not paying upfront for any product or service. Rather, he is paying on a recurring basis. If at any point in time, he does not find the service useful or the customer service non-satisfactory, he can opt out of the service.
- Services on subscription basis have a huge number of subscribers at any given point of time. The service providers need to keep a track of all their customers and devise individual offers for them in order to retain them. They also have to make the prediction of future sales generation before formulating any strategies. By being aware of the customer demand and buying pattern, they can easily reduce the churn rate.
- The service providers have a lot to do in subscription business model – they should be able to manage the sale, keep track of the customers, generated leads via different channels, cover entire customer lifecycle, and provide sales forecast and other market insights in order to enhance the customer experience with their company and product.
Thus, the new demands of sales in cloud and subscription-based services management, require a tool or software that is single-handedly able to manage everything mentioned above.
RackNap – A cloud sales management platform for cloud services providers
RackNap, as an ideal automated subscription billing software for managing sales and other processes of a subscription business, provides an end-to-end automated solution to manage the fresh leads from different marketing campaigns and the recurring model of revenue with ease.
- Getting complete control over leads from marketing campaigns
RackNap with complete automation, manages leads generated through various marketing campaigns and assigns them to the respective sales personnel, as shown in the following screenshot. The entire lead management is automated in RackNap.
Managing leads and nurturing them is the most important part of the sales process. RackNap ensures that no lead gets lost or is mishandled. This is because it allows you to set priorities to leads and arrange follow ups, so that no opportunity gets missed.
- Real-time monitoring of complete sales lifecycle Getting a lead is easy, but converting it into your customer is not. It’s a long haul – you get a lead, you convert it into a prospect, you negotiate your services, arrange follow ups for them and finally you close the deal. There needs to be proper streamlining of every process and activity covered under a sales lifecycle. It can be done only if the service providers have a right sales monitoring tool to keep a check on each process.
- Generating reports and future market analysis Having an idea about the future projection can help a service provider in formulating better strategies and setting targets. RackNap with its central data repository, does future cloud sales forecast and illustrates it through a graphical dashboard.You can set various parameters like time, sales pipeline, sales person etc., in order to get an idea about the revenue that can be expected in the given time period like shown in the screenshot below.This graphical dashboard or the CSO dashboard, lets the service provider know which product is more in demand, which billing cycle is better favored by the customers and such business intelligence and analytics can help him better manage upselling or cross selling opportunities.
This dashboard also provides visibility of sales generated through partners with comprehensive information about new sign-ups, commission given to them, revenue obtained, website traffic and more data intelligence. This allows you to look for any bottlenecks and resolve them beforehand.
- Tracking your sales team productivity Unlike other business processes, the performance in sales is the numbers you have earned. A sales manager needs to be updated about the status of each of his team member and how well they are performing. RackNap here also comes as a big aid, due to its flexibility to track every sales personnel and his contribution.With RackNap sales settings,
- You can define targets for your sales team and provide them with incentives based on different parameters – geography, billing terms, product types, number of products, amount of fresh/renewal income etc.
- With automatic incentive calculation and commission release, without any error, helps in keeping the employees – motivated and their performance – monitored.
- RackNap automatically calculates retroactive commission for cloud sale.
- All the above help you identify your best sales staff so that you can reward and motivate them for achieving their future targets.
- Cross-sell, up-sell and bundling of various cloud products RackNap gives service providers the flexibility to upsell and cross-sell subscription-based services. Thus, you can create various bundled offerings to meet the customers’ demands. You can also send automated mails to the clients as per their existing products. Customers can directly view relevant products based on their past purchases in their RackNap’s member panel.
- Managing the Renewals Sales is not a one-time process. The recurring nature of business, makes customer retention an important part of the entire sales process. Not only is the lead conversion in focus, but renewals form a major part of the revenue.Hence, RackNap – the sales management software, helps service providers in keeping a track of their renewals, like keeping a track of their expiry date etc. like shown in the screenshot below, you can fill the renewal customer details and set follow-ups for the same.
- Multi-tier partner management RackNap allows service providers to create and manage multi-tier partner network with ease. Both discount and commission based partner lifecycle is completely automated and even a service provider’s partners can utilize RackNap to manage their services and sell their products to the customers.With RackNap, a service provider can:
- Track performance and activities of partners in actual time.
- View sold services and earned revenue via partner channel.
- Identify topmost partners depending on – revenue generated, number of leads provided or products sold etc.
- Provide special privileges to top partners directly from his panel.
With RackNap, a service provider’s partner gets:
- Access to his billing data – sales, discount, commissions, revenue etc.
- Ability to request privileges at the click of a button, like, special discount for his customers.
- A panel to manage his end customers, provide support, place order for customer, view billing information, etc.
- Ability to provide white-label support to his end customers.
- Access to marketing resources like PPTs, eBooks, mailers, PDFs, etc.
- ‘Lead lock’ to prevent his lead from being shared in the system by other partner.
- Single dashboard view RackNap’s single dashboard access allows service providers to have a complete visibility into a client’s status- whether he is an existing customer, a lead or a potential. Customer details and tracking of leads help them avoid repetitive communication with existing leads.
In order to manage subscription or cloud-based business, service providers will need to differentiate their offerings from their competitors’. And one thing that makes a major difference is the customer satisfaction.
By making use of an automation software like RackNap, they can easily manage their business processes and enhance customer experience.
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