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How To Scale Customer Success Without Increasing Headcount

Author: Melissa Scatena

Published: June 6, 2024

Last updated: June 6, 2024

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When most SaaS companies acquire a large army of clients, they usually expand their onboarding teams to ensure new customers derive the most value from their products. The problem is that you can’t keep hiring additional staff as your customer base grows — it’s just inefficient. 

What if you could onboard any number of users without increasing head count and burning out existing onboarding employees? That’s where knowing how to scale customer success (CS) comes in handy. 

What Is Scaled Customer Success? 

Scaled CS isn’t simply a “do more with less” approach. Think of it as finding the best way to enlighten customers at scale so that they effectively use your product or service. It's about making CS processes efficient to achieve more with the same or fewer resources. 

If you create an online knowledge base, for example, new customers can learn how your company’s products work with little or no help from the onboarding team. This reduces the need to hire extra customer success professionals when your client acquisition explodes.  

You may argue that most people need one-on-one sessions with an onboarding professional when using your products for the first time. However, you can automate some of those interactions through scaled CS. For instance, answering the same questions over and over again is tedious and time-consuming, especially when dealing with multiple new clients. A better approach could be to address the issue in a video or an FAQ page and infuse the content into your onboarding process

How Do You Scale Customer Success? 

If you want to scale customer success without expanding your CS team, there are several things you can do. 

1. Determine Your Goals

What do you aim to achieve with scaled customer success? Maybe you want to increase retention and reduce churn rates by making sure clients realize the value of your product quickly. Or perhaps you are looking for upselling opportunities by explaining how your software’s more expensive features work. Knowing your goals will help you tailor your scaled CS strategy to achieve desired outcomes. 

2. Segment Your Customer Base

Break your client base into two: low- and high-touch. 

Low-touch customers require minimal direct interaction with your customer success team and are typically (but not necessarily) companies that use your product less extensively — maybe they utilize just a few of the product’s features. Self-service resources such as knowledge bases and video tutorials may be enough to help them use your products successfully. 

On the other hand, high-touch customers usually use most or all of your product’s features. Also, complex integrations may be necessary to implement your solution in their business, which demands priority and more personalized support. For this reason, they need regular one-on-one interactions with your customer success team. 

Segmentation will help you provide the best customer experience, depending on the level of interaction each client needs.

3. Provide Self-Service Resources

The aim of scaling customer success without increasing head count is to maintain the size of your team, no matter the number of new clients you obtain. But again, you don’t want to overwhelm your current staff with extra responsibilities when the company gets more customers. Self-service offerings can provide customers info about your products without the intervention of a CS team. They include: 

  • An online knowledge base: A library containing information about how your product works and in-depth solutions to problems customers will likely face when implementing your technology. 
  • Video tutorials: Be certain each clip is clear and concise. It’s best if it covers something specific, such as how a particular product feature works.
  • FAQ guides: They should answer all the frequent questions customers have been asking over the years. 

Make sure the information in the self-service resources aligns with your customer success goals so all your efforts point towards desired outcomes. But why exactly are these resources important? 

When a customer success professional answers questions over the phone, email, or live chat, that person can only handle one customer at a time. If you provide educational resources about your product on the brand’s website, multiple clients can access the information simultaneously at any time and from anywhere. This promotes scaled customer success by ensuring you don’t need additional staff, even as more companies start using your product.

Additionally, as low-touch customers use self-service resources to master your products, your existing CS team can focus on high-touch clients.

4. Leverage Onboarding Technology

Do you know why onboarding is one of the most critical steps in the entire customer lifecycle? It sets the stage for customer success. If you get your onboarding strategies wrong, you will chase away all your new clients — they will be busy looking for alternatives with better onboarding support. 

Unfortunately, providing the best onboarding experience tailored to each customer’s needs gets more difficult as your client base expands. 

The good news is that you can use a client onboarding portal such as OnRamp to show new clients how to use your solutions by guiding them through step-by-step, automated workflows you create. Even better, the technology can track customers’ onboarding journeys so you can see where clients get stuck and use the insights to improve their overall experience. 

All these activities occur in a central place where you can onboard as many clients as possible but provide a personalized experience at scale without hiring extra onboarding staff.

Achieving Scaled Customer Success Quickly and Easily

Scaled CS can help you educate an increasing number of clients about your tools without recruiting more employees. The size of your onboarding team is no longer a barrier to growth, especially if you leverage self-service resources such as online knowledge centers and detailed FAQ guides. 

But what if you want to scale customer success from the moment you land new accounts? Customer onboarding software can be the secret weapon you need. However, you have to choose the right platform for it to be effective. That’s where OnRamp comes in. 

Our platform enables you to create custom, automated customer onboarding workflows so you avoid the inefficiencies of manual processes and personalize the onboarding experience to your clients' needs. Schedule a demo today to see how OnRamp can help you scale CS without expanding your CS team.