Retaining customers and building strong relationships depends on their success journey. If you know your customers and what works best for them, then you can help your customers get the most of their relationship with your company as they journey through your AR process. The better your customer’s success journey is, the more likely you will be to retain the customer relationship and be able to build on it.
Here are five suggestions on how to map out your customer AR journey.
Know Your Customer
The first step to mapping out your customer AR journey is to know your customer. There is no one-size-fits-all template to use as a map. Identify the characteristics of your customers that reflect the processes they go through in AR. A customer that pays promptly and electronically through your portal will have different characteristics that determine its AR journey than a customer that pays late or remits with a paper check.
Identify Stages on Journey
After identifying your customer’s key characteristics determine the stages of the customer’s journey through your AR process. Every customer starts with a credit review. After that the stages can diverge depending on customer characteristics. Customers that pay by check or are late payers will have different stages than customers that are electronic payers and pay on time.
Map Out Customer Touch Points
Knowing your customer touch points is essential to maximizing their experience through the AR journey. Map out your customer touch points so you know the key parts of the AR process that need focus to optimize the customer experience. Customers that use your self-service portal will have different touch points than customers that pay by check.
Understand What Motivates Customer Behavior
Delve into the reasons behind customer behavior so you can determine the best way to optimize customer experience on the journey through AR. Internal and external factors can motivate customer behavior. Internally, practices such as DPO policies and manual systems can affect payment habits. Externally, the pandemic forced a shift in many customers’ way of doing business and payment habits.
cProactively Change and Adapt
Customer needs and behavior change over time. The perfect example of this is the switch to remote work many customers made to survive in the new normal. If your company didn’t proactively find ways to change to adapt to this new way of operating, you probably made your customer experience a real hassle. However, if you proactively changed and introduced a self-service portal to facilitate the automated solutions needed for remote work, your customers are probably positive about their AR journey and experience.
AR and AP issues are easier to deal with if you have automated systems. Cloud-based AR and AP solutions with self-service portals and automated processes keep vendors and customers connected no matter where they are located.
Automation increases efficiency, reduces costs and results in increased profits, cash flow and shareholder value.
Lockstep Collect, a leader in cloud-based credit and collection platforms, can help you collect cash in 4 ways:
- Cloud-based solutions
- Automated customer communications
- Customer self-service
- Collections Activity Management
Lockstep Collect is an experienced software partner that can help you maximize your collections and cash flow in the new normal.
If you would like to learn more about how you can benefit from AR automation, and improve cash flow 31% or more take our AR Automation Product Tour.