How subscriptions are revolutionising the customer experience

How subscriptions are revolutionising the customer experience
Despite all the focus on the business dividends, it’s the consumer who is the ultimate beneficiary of the subscription billing model. While subscriptions have been around for decades, the unprecedented level of service control now offered has not. But beyond the mere convenience, what are the biggest benefits of subscriptions for customers?

With setting up and paying for subscription services now easier than ever, thanks to the proliferation of account structures and payment options available, consumers are increasingly preferring the flexibility, cost-effectiveness and immediacy of subscription-based goods and services, as opposed to the burden, expense and sluggishness of direct ownership.

But for all the tangible benefits for businesses of operating on a subscription model, they’re all for nothing if the advantages aren’t also felt by your customers, for they are plentiful, and powerful in giving rise to a positive consumer narrative around your service.

As 34% of leading businesses are making the customer journey a top priority for 2020, it will increasingly become a key differentiator of service offerings too. Subscription businesses must make their enticing benefits known, including:

1. Choice of payment methods

With flexible payment options, including automated methods such as credit & debit cards, direct debit and PayPal, as well as offline options for B2B clients who still need an invoice, customers can pay using their preferred payment method rather than being forced into a one-size-fits-all model. With this greater payment convenience, the customer has even greater confidence and control over their outgoings.

2. Flexible billing cycles

For customers, subscription billing is about making the service work around them. When in control of their own billing cycle, customers can choose when they are billed each month, making it easier to budget – and harder to get caught short by service suspensions or late fees. With more choice in how their subscription is paid for, customers can spend according to their means and needs, while still benefitting from the same quality of service.

3. Self-service

When it comes to self-service, 67% of customers prefer dealing with an issue themselves rather than speaking to a customer services representative (CSR). By opening up online access to customer accounts and services through an intuitive self-service portal, there’s no more leaving clients hanging on the line as your CSRs wade through an ever-growing backlog of calls and emails. 

4. Proactive customer communications

Subscriptions can be a win for both brands and consumers, but the onus is on companies to communicate those benefits to their customers and nurture the relationship throughout the subscription lifecycle. Personalised email notifications covering every subscription eventuality can foster strong, long-term brand loyalty and advocacy. 

5. Auto-renew convenience

Hesitation, disregard or sheer idleness can make or break a long-running subscription when its period draws to a close. With auto-renewals, the customer can reap the rewards of uninterrupted service without needing to worry about remembering to rekindle their subscription or re-entering their payment details, increasing customer lifetime value (CLV) for the service provider.

With automated recurring billing, you don’t have to compromise on quality in order to increase the scope and scale of your offering as your user base grows. Making your customers feel valued creates additional value for your business too, and this should be the priority for any subscription business moving ahead.

Try Cerillion Skyline now to see how it unlocks the recurring billing conundrum and empowers customers to take charge of their own subscriptions.