8 Tools SaaS Leaders Use to Onboard New Users

8 Tools SaaS Leaders Use to Onboard New Users

Onboarding might the single most important aspect of your marketing funnel.

By the time someone sees your advertising, reaches your website, is convinced by your message, and signs up for your trial, you’ve already invested a lot of money in that prospect.

Without solid onboarding, this valuable potential client can slip through your fingers at the last minute. It costs you not just the initial investment, but also the continued income from having them as clients.

And that’s the very lifeblood of your business.

Studies show that, if your service doesn’t meet a prospect’s expectations in first 30 minutes of interaction, they’re likely to abandon your site. Worse still, they’ll probably never come back.

Onboarding is all about reducing your Cost to Acquire Customer (CAC) by increasing your conversion ratio of prospects to customers with improved user interaction. It’s about carefully guiding your prospect to that “Aha!” moment that gets them hooked on your product.

Fortunately, we’re spoiled with many onboarding tool choices these days. Here are 8 of the best tools in the world for increasing your conversion rate through better onboarding.

1. Mixpanel

Mixpanel provides analytics for each step of your conversion funnel including, visits, registrations, form uses, Thank You pages, Product pages, and Pricing Plans read. It then allows you to set up custom emails to contact people at each individual step, encouraging them back to the funnel and one step closer to conversion.

Mixpanel main dashboard

It also removes both the guesswork and the “spray and pray” approach from your social media marketing efforts by giving you concise data on how, and if, your digital communities are making you money.

The service is ideal if your content marketing is closely knitted with the onboarding process. All user data is updated from a digital dashboard where you can track information such as:

  • The amount of time visitors spend on each page
  • What percentage of each page gets read by each visitor
  • A geographical “heat map” to see which countries or regions convert best for you

By tracking metrics like these and many more, the process of truly engaging your audience becomes a more scientific and fruitful endeavor.

Where the onboarding magic happens:
To use the dynamic email service, you’ll need to set up the People Properties correctly in a code snippet added to your website and then build the corresponding campaign in the Mixpanel user interface. If you have any trouble doing this, just speak with the Mixpanel team via LiveChat; they’re a very helpful bunch.

Mixpanel onboarding tutorial

Key takeaway: Mixpanel is an excellent and diverse tool, but the main power it delivers in onboarding is from the custom emails that walk people through your marketing funnel. If you test different copy for each stage, you’re bound to increase your conversions over time.

Website: Mixpanel.com

2. Vero

All good onboarding starts with a simple email. Usually, it’s the first of many.

The problem faced by email marketers is that everybody is different. But what if you had a dynamic email marketing funnel to track user habits, preferences, lead quality and current stage of completion in your marketing funnel? Well, that’s what Vero is.

Vero

Whereas Mixpanel has a broad range of tools, Vero is focused specifically on email. It allows you to slowly build profiles of individual customers over time and build a picture of your audience like never before. The email campaigns offer an incredible level of customizability, including features such as:

  • Automated emails based on user’s individual on-site activity
  • User data integration in the email copy to add a personalized touch
  • Tweak email copy via integrated A/B testing

Where the onboarding magic happens:
When you log into the Vero interface, there’s a campaign feature right at the top of the page which opens up the email campaign customization options. The screenshot below shows you some of the features available for better email onboarding.

Vero onboaridng tutorial

Key takeaway: Vero seriously ups the game on email marketing. With the right information and the right CTA’s going to the right people at the right times, increasing conversions and reducing churn is easily achievable.

Website: Getvero.com

3. Zendesk

One of the most important strategies for onboarding is to let clients know there’s help at hand. Many modern SaaS applications are intricate, so it’s easy for new users to get lost in the details. Zendesk is the cure to this problem.

Zendesk

The company boasts an impressive client list, providing a customer care system to over 40,000 businesses globally. Zendesk’s own onboarding experience is a real masterpiece and worth checking out all by itself. The service feature list includes:

  • Aggregated customer communication from Twitter, email or any other channel
  • Customer ticket prioritization system
  • Internal communication features to work as a team on complex problems

Where the onboarding magic happens:
The “unsolved tickets” section of Zendesk is where you’ll find users who currently have problems that need fixing.

Zendesk onboarding

Key takeaway: Zendesk has a heavy focus on improving relationships between you and your customers, and very few things help you onboard better than building stronger relationships based on trust. If you show your customers you’re there for them, they’ll stick with you longer and increase your average lead time value (LTV).

Website: Zendesk.com

4. LiveChat

LiveChat is a “proprietary eponym” which is a fancy term for when a brand name becomes THE name that everyone uses for the product no matter who makes it. The company “LiveChat” is the original designer of this service and is probably the best.

live chat

Filling out an email or contact form means waiting for a response and many people aren’t comfortable talking on the phone. It’s also tough to guess every single problem your prospect might face after registration and include each one in your FAQ.

LiveChat means your prospects can quickly and easily speak with a real live human being so you can ensure that they get exactly what they need from your service. Once you’ve identified high bounce rate pages, LiveChat allows you to set-up custom pop-ups with copy such as “Having trouble? Let’s Chat!”

This is a very powerful tool; online accounting software company, Intuit.com, famously increased its conversions by 211% using this service alone.

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Where the onboarding magic happens:
Implementing a custom greeting at the stages of your funnel with the highest abandonment rates is very effective for onboarding. First, determine the worst performing pages of your site and set-up a chat pop-up saying “Any troubles? Get Help!” to appear after 1.5 minutes without any user interaction. Go to “Settings” and select “Greetings” in the left side menu of LiveChat, and go to “Set up more greetings” for further options.

livechat onboarding tutorial

Key takeaway: It’s tough to beat a quick conversation with a knowledgeable person. Once you’ve identified the problematic stages in your funnel, LiveChat helps you help your users at those points. And if you can help people get what they want, they’ll love you for it.

Website: livechat.com

5. KISSmetrics

Pouring over data is a task that appeals to some more than others. But for the discerning data-geek onboarder, KISSmetrics is the tool of choice.

kissmetrics

These guys are so serious about gathering user data, they once stepped into a legal grey area and got in trouble for breaking US wiretap laws. As reported in the MediaPost, the case was amicably settled out of court.

The incredibly in-depth analytics allow you to:

  • Compare conversion rates between any two events from visit to purchase
  • Integrates marketing tools Optimizely and Visual Website Optimizer to track your A/B testing efforts
  • Track percentages of users and their individual conversion data from each campaign on each of your social media channels.

Simply put, if anything happens in your company’s digital space, it’s tracked, measured and presented in an excellent interface.

Where the onboarding magic happens:
KISSmetrics has all kinds of data available, so it’s difficult to pinpoint all of the parts that can help you with your onboarding process. However, the “Funnel Report” in the screenshot below is a great example of a feature that can help you identify possible roadblocks.

kissmetrics onboarding tutorial

Key takeaway: Because KISSmetrics is so detailed, it’s easy to identify aspects of your onboarding process that are turning people away. Armed with more data, you can more easily identify and address problems.

Website: Kissmetrics.com

6. Survey.io

If you’re not excited about endless reams of hard data, you might like Survey.io. As far as features go, it’s a relatively straightforward feedback survey. And where better to get a critique about your onboarding process than from the people who’ve just gone through it?

survey.io

When you head over to the website, the homepage appears a little underwhelming, but the fact that it was created by Sean Ellis of Qualeroo should instill some faith.

You can log into the service, create and implement a one-page survey with just one line of code, and have actionable onboarding feedback literally within minutes. Very impressive!

servey.io onboarding tutorial

Where the onboarding magic happens:
The Survey.io interface is very straightforward. As soon as you hit the homepage you’re met with the survey creation screen. You can distribute it using any of the three methods shown in the screenshot above. Once that’s done, it’s simply a matter of waiting for user feedback.

Key takeaway: Digital marketing is often a guessing game. You think you’re giving your clients what they need, but it’s often easy to miss something. A quick survey can give you feedback directly from your users to shore up problematic areas.

Website: Survey.io

7. InterCom

Intercom is a full-fledged onboarding toolbox. It’s lets you create a live database of customer information that updates in real-time, and provides relationship management tools to nudge users gently through your onboarding process.

intercom

It also offers informative webinars and an excellent blog full of conversion-boosting tips. There are several package levels, the first of which is free and shows you your customer’s on-site behavior. It’s a good way to get a feel for things before shelling out any cash.

The extensive features list includes:

  • The ability to send personalized messages to your users, even via your mobile apps
  • A/B testing that analyses every aspect of your customer interaction messages
  • The ability to communicate with individual customers while using onscreen data

Where the onboarding magic happens:
InterCom is all about the conversation. When you go to the “Users” tab at the top, you’re met with a list of your customers and the various options to interact with them. Data is provided on each one so you know where they are in the onboarding process and how to help them move forward.

Intercom onboarding tutorial

Key takeaway: Intercom is all about building relationships with your users. With so much personalized info available in each customer profile, you can easily engage people on their own terms to make them feel like they’re speaking with a friend rather than a faceless business.

Website: Intercom.io

8. MyTips

We saved the best for last. MyTips allows you to create and integrate on-screen tutorials within your website, without using any code whatsoever.

mytips

Every time someone comes to your SaaS user interface, you can create subtle, stylish and fully customizable notification windows that pop up and highlight, guide and instruct your users through your service.

Not only is this an incredibly intuitive onboarding strategy, but MyTips offers integrated analytics that can track the stage of your funnel users are at and produce automated tips and emails accordingly.

It’s never been easier to gently walk your users from signups to adoring fans.

Where the onboarding magic happens:
On-site tutorials provide your user with a unique onboarding experience. They get exactly what they expect after sign-up by following your tips. Product learning goes smoothly because you motivate your visitor by helping them take action on the lessons learned.

After just 5 minutes you can easily create 3-5 tips which help your user to feel that special “Aha!” moment. Add a little code to your website and you can enjoy insightful analytics and onboarding success by logging in to service dashboard. Find an example tutorial here.

myTips onboarding tutorial

Key takeaway: SaaS products can be complex. And, your users are incredibly busy people. When a user sees your interface or any part of your website for the first time, simple pop-up windows pointing to key features are a great way to gently guide people through to that “Aha!” moment that you are trying to produce with your onboarding process.

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