SAAS Terms Explained

Welcome to a simplified guide to Customer Success terms! Bookmark this article if you're new to Customer Success and want to understand commonly-used jargon. 

Adoption - This term pertains to whether customers are actively using the product. It's a good measure of customer success with a product, tool, or service.

Annual Recurring Revenue (ARR) - This is the actual revenue earned from customers annually, not just a percentage.

Beta - A small group of customers who test a product or service.

Book of Business - The number of accounts or the total revenue generated that a CSM manages.

Business to Business (B2B) - A business that sells to another business, commonly seen in the pairing of "B2B" and "SaaS" in Customer Success roles.

Business to Consumer (B2C) - A business that sells directly to consumers, similar to Uber.

Churn - When a customer stops doing business with a company, resulting in no further payments.

Customer Lifecycle/Journey Mapping - A detailed outline of the customer journey and its stages or milestones.

Customer Segmentation - Categorizing customers based on shared factors like revenue or industry.

Customer Success Manager - CSMs serve as customers' strategic partners, building relationships, coaching, and retaining customers for long-term success.

Customer Satisfaction (CSAT) - A customer survey completed after an interaction with a business, scored from 1 (terrible) to 100 (exceptional).

Cross-Sell - Selling customers complementary products or services.

Executive Business Review - Similar to a quarterly business review, but may not occur every quarter.

Enterprise  - Highest paying accounts typically paired with a customized service strategy.Expansion - A mix of upselling and cross-selling plays to increase an account's total revenue.

Feature Request - When a customer requests a new feature or improvement for a product.

Health Score - A system for Customer Success teams to quickly gauge their customers' status.

High Touch - Personalized service including calls, training, and reviews.

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) - Metrics used to measure performance and progress towards a specific goal.

Low Touch - Some face-to-face interaction but with a less personalized service than high touch.

MidMarket - Customers with average revenue, with service typically between SMBs and Enterprises.MoM - Monthly comparison.

Net Promoter Score (NPS) - A customer survey scored from 1 (horrible) to 10 (best) measuring customer satisfaction.

Net Revenue Retention (NRR) - Percentage of total revenue from existing customers in a given year.

Onboarding/Implementation - The process of preparing a customer to launch a product, sharing best practices and teaching them about the product.

Playbooks - A guide for what to do in various Customer Success situations.

Quarterly Business Review - A business review with the customer every quarter to discuss progress, feedback, data trends, and support requests.

Renewals - Extending a service contract with an account; may be led by Customer Success or Sales teams.

SaaS - Software-as-a-Service - such as Zoom, Slack, and Google Workspace.Sale Cycle - The process of taking a curious prospect to a signed contract and turning them into a customer.

Stakeholder - Decision-makers, executives, and supporters who interact with companies in Customer Success.

Small and Medium-Sized Business  - Customers with lower revenues, typically paired with tech touch or low-touch service strategy.

Tech Touch - Customer interaction managed entirely through tech tools.

Upsell - Selling customers a higher-tiered plan or adding additional licenses to their current plan to increase revenue

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