Last couple of years has been pretty revolutionary for user onboarding.
But 2021 was a case of its own.
The pandemic wasn’t over, but we were able to make better use of the technology it brought us.
Online shopping, work from home, Zoom. Changes happened even within changes.
It’s been a good year for SaaS, hands down.
And to make 2022 even better, we need to take a good look at 2021 and how it changed the user onboarding game.
So gather up, folks, we have some expected and some shocking statics for you.
Best User Onboarding Statistics of 2021 to Keep in Mind in 2022
This year as well as 2020 and even 2019 had been the years in the history of SaaS that saw the most drastic changes in user onboarding and customer onboarding.
Not only did they change the whole SaaS game, but they also redefined user onboarding and showed companies and startups how proper onboarding can help customer acquisition, customer retention, and customer satisfaction.
Moreover, we saw that an effective onboarding process wasn’t just beneficial for the customer onboarding process but also for employee onboarding and employee retention.
This just in: Loyal employees equal loyal customers.
So in the last three years as the SaaS industry, we’ve been getting better and better at maintaining a healthy customer lifecycle, dealing with churn rates, and showcasing the company culture to new hires.
All thanks to better user onboarding.
But hey, that’s all me. Let me give you the actual numbers to make sure we are on the same page.
Here are the most important user/customer onboarding statistics of the last year(s).
Why a better user onboarding experience?
1- 86 percent of consumers will pay more for a better customer experience.
This one stat by Oracle RightNow is actually pretty old, but it is still valid, if not even more accurate.
Today in 2021, where you can have a great onboarding experience with the least expected of products and a poor onboarding experience with the best, there is one absolute truth.
Users are starving for a good customer experience.
They want it, and if we are willing in the SaaS industry, it is no tall order to implement an effective onboarding program.
2- Increasing customer retention by 5% has the potential to increase profits by 25-95%
Another popular stat that shocked the inexperienced big time when it was first announced is from Invesp.
And how does this relate to user onboarding?
Because of the SOLID fact that a good customer retention rate can’t be achieved without a strong onboarding process.
Let’s hear it from Neil Patel:
“The onboarding process sets the stage for your entire relationship. When done well, your client will feel confident in your expertise and excited about the future. If the process is complicated or annoying, you could lose that client you worked hard to get.”
3- 40% of users prefer self-service over human contact
When was the last time you called someone for customer support?
You emailed them maybe?
But I know for sure that almost all of us have checked a help center or written to a chatbot the last time we needed help.
News flash: Emails and phone calls are a thing of the past.
And what do we have to replace them? More user onboarding elements.
That’s right. Whether it is a knowledge base or a help center, a chatbot or a resource center, it is all part of the user experience and, thus, a part of the user onboarding journey.
You might as well give your customer service specialists something better to do. Work smarter, not harder.
4- Almost 60% of companies say they are not satisfied with their current user onboarding experience for their product
The thing about a user onboarding flow is that it needs to evolve over time.
Happy customers cannot be guaranteed with a one-time attempt; you have to keep working on it. That’s precisely why most companies now have departments specifically working on user onboarding and even VPs on the job.
One thing is again made clear, though: Onboarding matters.
And a perfect onboarding strategy calls for perfect onboarding tools. You might find one right here.
5- 97% of companies say a good user onboarding is necessary for a product’s growth
Approaching the end of 2021, companies finally realize just how big of an effect user onboarding has on growth.
It is easy enough to see that a perfect user onboarding flow can cause an increase in the conversion rate of a company. And that’s why SaaS people are starting to see how effective user onboarding is good for both their existing customer base and for a potential customer.
Don’t forget: onboarding starts the first time you engage with your customers and growth starts when you repeat that process.
What are other companies doing?
6- 74% of companies have a dedicated customer onboarding team
More than two-thirds of companies that Precursive interviewed report that they have a dedicated customer onboarding team.
That means you might already be behind the majority of the SaaS industry (let’s fix that)
But the truth is, in some instances, a team might be overkill. When you have the right onboarding tool, anyone can come up with a killer onboarding flow. Let’s get that percentage to a hundred this new year 💯
7- 60% of companies use at least 4-6 tools for customer onboarding
As I mentioned right above 👆 a big team is not at all necessary when you have a good onboarding tool.
And in this very stat, 4-6 tools might be overkill as well. Especially when you can get all key features like onboarding checklists, in-app messages, other onboarding tasks, and components of a customer journey in one place.
8- 82% of enterprise organizations rate their onboarding approach as a key driver of value
It is not a surprise to find out that users find value in a well-designed onboarding flow, neither is that enterprise organizations are giving onboarding the credit it deserves.
If a negative onboarding experience is enough to drive away a customer, a good experience is all it takes to win their hearts.
That’s why we have to not only acknowledge the importance of onboarding but also implement it.
9- 66% of the companies ask for customer feedback 1-2 times during the implementation phase and 48% do it through emails and calls.
There was a time in history when we liked receiving calls and emails asking us about our experience with a certain product.
Well, not anymore.
Our whole digital environment being personalized for each of us, it doesn’t come off as exciting as it used to be to get asked about our opinion.
So, it is a priority to make sure feedback isn’t a hassle for customers, especially when most companies ask for it more than once and the rest even more often.
Onboarding UX patterns like NPS surveys and in-app modals are a great way of doing this.
10- More than 50% of companies across all segments have VP representation now for customer onboarding
Meaning that customer onboarding has a VP of its own or is reported directly to a VP.
That’s how much it matters.
Although the number is not past half of the respondents to Precursive’s interview, 50% is still huge numbers compared to the state of onboarding a few years ago.
How do users feel?
11- 80% of users say they’ve deleted an app because they didn’t know how to use it
One of my favorite statistics ever about user experience has got to be this one, just because it is so relatable.
Users DO delete your app, close the tab to your website, or get rid of your product UNLESS they are prompted immediately to explain how to use it.
How do I know? I do the same thing.
And I bet so do you. To prevent our own products from suffering the same fate, the solution is of course: proper 👏 user 👏 onboarding 👏
12- 100% of enterprise organizations have a customer success department
Now, it is not surprising to find out all enterprises Precursive interviewed had a customer success department. It would be surprising if they didn’t in this day and age.
But what might be surprising to you is that you don’t need your customer success department to implement a killer onboarding process.
All it takes is one person, half an hour, and some creativity. Here’s the tool to get you there 👈
13- 74% of people have watched a video to understand how to use a new app or website better
Can’t afford an onboarding tool just yet? A video is all it takes.
Wyzowl’s discovery shows that your users will most likely be content with a video tutorial as long as you keep it short.
Got the onboarding tool? You can still use your videos within the onboarding flow. Just put it inside an in-app modal or within a resource center.
Gotta keep the visual learners in mind, am I right?
14- 86% of people say they’d be more likely to stay loyal to a business that invests in onboarding content that welcomes and educates them after they’ve bought
Can we all agree that a welcome modal is an instant Cupid’s arrow to the heart?
We are so engaged in getting stuff done throughout the day that a warm welcome and a few nice words are enough to take our breath away. Well, at least mine 🙄
So, the recipe for a good onboarding flow is not at all complicated. Just welcome your users, get them through a few crucial steps, and congratulate them when they’re done.
Bam, you’ve got a loyal customer for you.
15- 66% of adults believe that a company valuing their time is the best online user experience they can receive
Time is money.
And consequently, users find value in products that value their time.
So, although a good user onboarding is pretty simple with welcoming, simple steps, and congratulating the users, there is one more component to keep in mind.
A progress bar.
Users must know at all times that you won’t take up too much of their time during the onboarding process. And the best way to let them know is either using a progress bar or a progress marker throughout your onboarding flow, especially in tooltips or in the form of a short checklist.
Do that and watch your completion rates skyrocket.
The key takeaway here is the fact that SaaS can’t be without proper customer/user onboarding. Not anymore.
We can either join those who are already embracing the revolutionary ways of onboarding to acquire, retain, and satisfy users, or stay behind and disappear into the void of failed SaaS businesses.
Bet you know the right answer 😎