The Top Customer Success KPIs to Track

For SaaS and subscription companies, buyer success is a key income driver.

Closing new contracts is essential, however retaining and rising income from current accounts is essential for sustaining and rising ARR.

So, how precisely do you measure if a buyer is “profitable” (and what does that even imply?)

On this article, you’ll learn to outline buyer success, and uncover an important KPIs for measuring retention and development (and different buyer success objectives) in addition to the worth consumers obtain out of your product.

Defining buyer success and measurements 

Buyer success (CS) is a enterprise initiative (and hooked up division) that seeks to make sure prospects get most worth out of your product. 

It’s about serving to consumers obtain their desired objectives and outcomes, with the thought being that if this may be attained, prospects will probably be much less more likely to churn.

This raises the query, then:

How on earth do you measure “success”?

For particular person purchasers, we are able to ask, “What was it that the client needed to realize initially? Did we attain this purpose?” That’s pretty simple.

However measuring buyer success throughout the board requires us to trace progress and enhancements in our varied initiatives. Briefly, we’re gonna should dive into the info.

That’s the place buyer success KPIs (key efficiency indicators) are available in.

Buyer success KPIs are metrics that assist us to outline, measure, and observe progress in buyer success initiatives. 

Take buyer churn fee (a generally used KPI amongst buyer success groups), as an example. If churn is reducing and fewer prospects are leaving every month, we are able to safely assume that our prospects are reaching their targets utilizing our platform.

These KPIs are a proxy for fulfillment measurement, positive, however they’re essential for understanding the place the gaps are in your CS course of, figuring out modifications and options, and driving recurring income.

In case you’re questioning what affect data-backed insights can have, simply have a look at what Gong’s purchasers have been in a position to do with their buyer success efforts:

Buyer success leaders use these KPIs to trace engagement and inform enhancements in two broad areas, every of which is a significant milestone within the buyer lifecycle:

  1. Onboarding
  2. Retention and growth


Within the first stage, success groups have a look at buyer engagement all through their onboarding course of.

For product-led development groups, onboarding sequences are usually automated. They’ll measure the share of consumers who full the onboarding sequence and the typical time it takes for brand spanking new prospects to finish the onboarding sequence.

For enterprise gross sales, onboarding consists of:

  • Establishing and executing coaching classes with completely different person teams (i.e. frontline managers, particular person contributors, by division or by function)
  • Collaborating with the client’s IT group to get licenses provisioned for all customers and to arrange product integrations
  • Implementing a assessment assembly cadence (ending with QBRs each quarter to trace progress)

Retention and growth

Retention is the place SaaS and subscription-based companies make the vast majority of their cash — prospects who churn after two months aren’t driving an entire lot of income.

Buyer success and account managers collaborate right here to maintain the client glad and to establish alternatives for growth (by means of cross-sell and upsell conversations).

This entails figuring out new wants within the group (whether or not a brand new group or a brand new use case) and placing collectively a enterprise case to assist deploying the product additional.

Buyer success KPIs for measuring retention and development

Under, we cowl 9 buyer success KPIs tailor-made for monitoring development and retention:

Customer success KPIs for measuring retention and growth

Quarterly renewed ARR 

ARR (annual recurring income) is likely one of the most generally used metrics in SaaS and subscription income companies.

Buyer success managers must look a bit deeper, utilizing the KPI “Quarterly renewed ARR.”

Your quarterly renewed ARR is the share of annual income that rolls over every quarter. In an excellent world, this might be 100%, that means all of our current prospects proceed to subscribe, and no one churns.

In fact, we don’t dwell in an excellent world, so anyplace within the excessive 90s (e.g., 97%+) is an efficient place to start out, however ideally, you need to hit the constructive growth numbers (101%+).

The quarterly renewed ARR method is as follows:

(Quantity of income renewed this quarter / Quantity of income for final quarter) x 100

Let’s say, for instance, at the start of quarter two, you’ve an ARR of $1.5m. At first of quarter three, $1.49m of this income is renewed. Your calculation would appear like this:

($1.49m / $1.5m) x 100 = 99.33%

Quarterly renewal alternatives 

Renewal alternatives happen when a buyer’s present contract involves an finish.

Say, for instance, you’ve a two-year contract with a given shopper, ending in October 2023. Which means you’ve a renewal alternative within the fourth quarter of 2023.

Measuring quarterly renewal alternatives is essential for understanding gross sales efficiency, however extra essential is measuring the share of renewal alternatives gained.

To calculate:

(Variety of quarterly renewal alternatives gained / Whole variety of quarterly renewal alternatives) x 100

When you have, say, 18 renewal alternatives in a given quarter, and your success group wins 16 of them, then you possibly can calculate it like this:

(16/18) x 100 = 88.89%

The significance of this metric is fairly simple: prospects who’re receiving worth out of your product and reaching their organizational objectives usually tend to renew. 

Buyer churn fee 

Your buyer churn fee is the share of consumers who canceled their subscription inside a given time interval (month-to-month, quarterly, or yearly).

It’s a vital metric as growth-oriented firms focus closely on churn discount. Clients who’re reaching their targets utilizing your product (i.e., these that may be outlined as “profitable”) aren’t more likely to go away, so excessive churn is a sign that enhancements have to be made within the CS division.

To calculate churn fee:

(Variety of misplaced prospects / variety of prospects at the start of a time frame) x 100

So, you probably have 1200 subscribers at the start of June, and 24 of them go away throughout that month:

(24 / 1200) x 100 = 2%

Typically talking, the benchmark churn fee for SaaS companies is between 3% and 5%, however the very best fee in your firm depends upon your trade, sort of product, and different components.

ARPU (common income per person) 

ARPU is fairly self-explanatory — it’s the quantity of income you possibly can count on to obtain from the typical person.

The ARPU method is equally easy:

Whole income / whole variety of prospects

The affect of selling and gross sales on ARPU is fairly apparent, however how does this KPI relate to buyer success?

Within the SaaS world, it’s fairly widespread to mix tiered and per-user pricing fashions.

See, for instance, Toggl Observe’s pricing mannequin.

Toggl tracking pricing

(Picture Supply)

With a pricing mannequin like this, we are able to affect ARPU in two key methods:

  1. Growing the variety of customers per buyer
  2. Bringing extra prospects as much as larger pricing tiers

Buyer success has a hand to play in each. If prospects are receiving nice worth out of your product, they’re extra more likely to roll it out throughout departments and enhance their customers. Plus, in case your product will help them develop, they’ll enhance customers naturally.

Secondly, in case your CS group is expert at demonstrating the worth prospects will obtain from upgrading to a higher-tiered plan, you’ll enhance ARPU.

NRR (internet income retention)

Internet income retention demonstrates your group’s potential to maintain (and probably develop) income, regardless of the existence of churn.

To calculate NRR, you want the next metrics already calculated:

  1. MRR (month-to-month recurring income) in the beginning of the month
  2. Enlargement income
  3. Income churn
  4. Income misplaced to downgrades

Then, the method is as follows:

((MRR in the beginning of the month + growth income – income churn – income misplaced to downgrades) / MRR in the beginning of the month) x 100

NRR is a strong buyer success metric as a result of it consists of growth and upsell income. Which means it’s reflective of your CS group’s potential to promote into current accounts

In case your group is phenomenal at this, NRR can really be above 100%, regardless of churn. That’s the purpose, anyway.

Upsells and cross-sells 

Upsells and cross-sells are measured as a greenback worth, and so they’re a mirrored image of your buyer success group’s potential to broaden income from current accounts.

Income growth can come from pricing tier upgrades, including new customers, or promoting product add-ons.

There’s no actual calculation right here. You simply add up the overall income gained from upselling into every account.


Adoption is usually measured on a function foundation.

For instance, you possibly can measure the adoption of latest options by current prospects, utilizing the next method:

(Variety of prospects who’ve used the brand new function / whole variety of current prospects) x 100

Alternatively, you too can measure the adoption of current options by new prospects, or the share of options adopted by every person.

As a common rule, excessive adoption is a sign of buyer success. Conversely, low adoption can be utilized as a churn sign.

Buyer retention price 

Buyer retention price is the amount of cash you’ll must spend (on common) to retain a buyer.

The method is fairly easy:

Whole price of buyer retention / variety of prospects

Buyer retention bills embrace issues just like the manufacturing price of onboarding supplies, buyer success agent salaries, and extra.

However it may be difficult making an attempt to determine how a lot your buyer retention efforts are affecting your buyer lifetime values. LTV can fluctuate based mostly on buyer sources, like adverts over suggestions, and lots of different components, so that you’ll must make an informed guess.

Your buyer retention price must be decrease than your buyer acquisition price (CAC). In any other case, you may as effectively give attention to new shopper acquisition.

Usually, acquisition prices round 5x as a lot as retention, so in case your CRC isn’t near a fifth of your CAC, you might must rethink the way you method buyer success and retention.

Enlargement income 

Enlargement income is the quantity of income generated from promoting into current accounts. To calculate growth income, merely take away current income and income from new prospects:

MRR at finish of month – MRR at starting of month – income from new prospects = growth income

Say, for instance, at the start of the quarter, you’re making $1.5m in MRR.

On the finish of the quarter, you’ve elevated this to $1.8m, $200,000 of which got here from closing new prospects. Utilizing the method above, you possibly can calculate that the opposite $100,000 got here from growth, by means of wins corresponding to:

  • Promoting new product add-ons
  • Growing the variety of customers per buyer
  • Upgrading some prospects to larger pricing tiers

Buyer success KPIs for measuring engagement and relationships

Subsequent up, let’s discover some buyer success KPIs you should utilize to measure the well being of your buyer relationships.

Customer success KPIs for measuring engagement and relationships


Internet promoter rating (NPS) is extensively thought of the holy grail of buyer success metrics.

It’s a easy course of: you ask prospects one query (“On a scale of 1-10, how doubtless would you be to advocate us to associates or colleagues?”) after which allocate respondents into three teams:

  • Promoters (those that scored you 9 or 10)
  • Passives (those that scored you 7 or 8)
  • Detractors (those that scored you 6 or under)

Then, you apply the NPS calculation:

Share of promoters – Share of detractors

Success groups use NPS to grasp buyer sentiment and chance to churn. Typically talking, scores between 30 and 70 are thought of fascinating.

License utilization 

License utilization is an efficient indicator of buyer engagement, and it’s fairly straightforward to calculate:

Variety of lively customers / variety of whole customers offered x 100

Let’s say, as an example, you’ve offered a buyer a plan with 100 customers. Nonetheless, solely 80 of these customers have really logged on within the final month. You’ve got a license utilization fee of 80%.

We would like license utilization to be as near 100% as potential. If some customers aren’t using their subscription, your buyer is much less more likely to see worth in your product and extra more likely to churn.


CSAT (buyer satisfaction) is one other metric that you should utilize as an indicator of engagement and general buyer happiness.

To calculate CSAT, you first must run some type of buyer satisfaction survey. This generally is a easy “How did we do?” asking consumers to rank you on a scale of 1-10.

Then, we calculate:

(Variety of glad prospects [those who scored 9 or 10] / Whole variety of respondents) x 100

CSAT can be utilized to measure success at completely different levels within the buyer expertise, based mostly on if you distribute the survey. As an example, a CSAT survey delivered straight after a purchase order is useful for understanding how consumers really feel in regards to the buy course of.

Buyer well being 

Buyer well being scores differ by group, that means the way you calculate this metric will rely on the indicators you establish that reveal buyer success.

As an example, you may have a look at three indicators for measuring buyer well being:

  1. Frequency of utilization (how typically a buyer logs in)
  2. Breadth of utilization (the variety of customers a buyer has)
  3. Depth of utilization (the variety of contains a given buyer makes use of)

Then, you’d assign values to every sign (maybe utilizing a scale of 1 to 10). For instance, prospects who use your product day by day may rating 10, whereas those that log in lower than as soon as per 30 days rating 1.

On this instance, you’d measure your buyer well being rating out of 30, after which common that throughout your complete buyer base.

MAU (month-to-month lively customers) 

Month-to-month lively customers is a superb buyer engagement metric for subscription software program firms.

MAU tells you what number of of your paying prospects really log in and use your product each month. Low MAU numbers are an indication that your product isn’t partaking, is difficult to grasp, or that your onboarding sequence wants work.


Buyer success KPIs are essential for measuring progress in direction of CS objectives, influencing retention, and finally driving recurring income.

In fact, KPIs can’t be seen in a vacuum — you’ll must implement modifications, assessment and analyze particular buyer tales, and put a training and improvement apply in place in your buyer success staff.

Wanna find out how?

Momentive used Gong to develop a complete buyer success teaching program and drive engagement and retention.

Get all of the secrets and techniques and stage up your buyer success initiatives right here.

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