20+ questions to ask while onboarding your customer

A customer onboarding questionnaire helps you understand customer expectations and provide them with a delightful experience.
Shuvedha Subramaniam
November 2, 2022
Resources
Main Illustration:
Aswinchandar M

20+ questions to ask while onboarding your customer

A customer onboarding questionnaire helps you understand customer expectations and provide them with a delightful experience.
Shuvedha Subramaniam
November 2, 2022
Resources
Main Illustration:
Aswinchandar M

In This Post

In 2006, the manufacturers and marketers of the Crocs brand of foam clogs rapidly ramped up their production as demands started soaring.

This led to their sales doubling in 2007. But instead of becoming an icon, the whole thing quickly turned into a fad and died down by the end of the year. Warehouses piled up with stocks, and sales began to drop once again. 

The company eventually learned to fan the flames patiently (and spent a fortune on restructuring their business) They knew it was not the most head-turning piece of design out there. But, they snugly fit the purpose and today are doing better than ever. What started as a shoe for boaters is now a practical staple across households and professions. 

Wondering how the brand turned its fortune around and is now recording annual revenues of $2.3 billion? Well, they listened.

They listened and tended to their key customers. Their retargeting techniques, celebrity endorsements, collaborations, and the 13-hole personalization attachments helped carve a niche for themselves over the years.

Why is asking questions important for customer onboarding?

The rise and fall of Crocs teaches us the importance of listening to the voice of the customer, asking all the right questions, and diving into the details of problems with a vision to set it right and achieve success. And that’s how it is with customer onboarding too!

Be it for a B2B SaaS or a B2C SaaS product (or solution), the goal of customer onboarding is to understand and meet (or exceed) expectations. With onboarding, you can turn the wheels in your favor. You can ensure customers master your product and excel at their work. Even before they get frustrated or perch on the subject of churn, you can get them delighted with your product or service. We’ll show you how in this blog.

Know more about the five factors that decide the success of your customer onboarding project.

What is a customer onboarding questionnaire?

A customer onboarding questionnaire is a survey sent to new customers before they are onboarded into the product/solution. The survey intends to gather information about customer expectations, needs, and use cases. It might include information about the customer’s business, their project goals, and the top challenges they want to solve. 

The goal of a customer onboarding questionnaire

Nailing your customer onboarding is your opportunity to strengthen relationships with customers, so they turn into your loyal advocates. Whether you are a small, medium, or large-scale enterprise, you would want to understand and delight customers universally. That's what a customer onboarding questionnaire is all about. The primary purpose of building a questionnaire for your customer onboarding is to understand customer expectations and to provide them with a delightful overall experience. You get to synchronize your processes, set the tone for the onboarding, and deliver the right message to customers using the information you gather from the onboarding questionnaire. Here are three reasons you should create a questionnaire for your customer onboarding process.

1. It helps you get all the information you need

The sales team would have already briefed the onboarding team about the customer, their use cases, and more. But beyond these initial conversations, certain information may have slipped through the cracks, and the questionnaire helps you fill in these outstanding gaps. Hence, you completely understand what your customers are looking for. This will equip you to understand your customers better and help them meet their goals.

2. It sets clear expectations

You discuss the scope of your solution during the sales process itself. But that doesn't necessarily imply you've set clear expectations for what's to come. A customer onboarding questionnaire lets you and the customer jump on the same page and define precisely what the customer is looking for. Asking questions and setting expectations right from the beginning also means you are less likely to drop the ball on a project altogether. It is indeed the best way to create a great first impression and avoid scope creep in the future.

3. It helps you templatize a part of your customer onboarding process

Having an onboarding questionnaire on record means you can templatize a part of your customer onboarding process. Of course, there is no one-size-fits-all methodology in customer onboarding. Having your customer fill out the questionnaire at the start of the process will help the team keep track of customer goals and give onboarding teams a starting point. Onboarding teams then will not have to spend their time designing questionnaires for every customer. It also shows the customer that you are putting their needs first and are determined to help them with their cause.

Find out more about how Rocketlane helps you create surveys, intake forms, and handoffs with its exclusive Forms feature here.

What to ask your customers while onboarding them?

Whether you are just starting out in customer onboarding or are looking to up your onboarding process, here’s a quick trick to streamline your customer onboarding experience and make it delightful - by asking the right questions.

To begin with, it’s always best to schedule a quick ‘preparatory’ call to understand the objectives of what the customer is looking for. Of course, the onboarding team would have had a detailed handoff from the sales team, but this call will help corroborate the requisites and ensure nothing is missed out. The onboarding team can then proceed to construct an onboarding plan for the customer. Any clarifications can also get sorted out on this call and once this preparatory call is over, schedule a proper kickoff meeting with all stakeholders to showcase the journey you’ve mapped out for them.

Curious to know how Rocketlane onboards its customers? Read the full story here.

Taking the three-pronged approach to quizzing customers

Please note: While these questions may pertain to every customer, tailor or customize them to suit the specific needs of every customer. The following questions can be modified to suit B2B SaaS or B2C SaaS products and solutions.

1. Business/general information

The final part of your customer onboarding questionnaire can carry questions on the success criteria for customers and what metrics they are looking to track.

Pro-tip: Since the new world is data-driven, leverage data and customer intelligence for customer onboarding success.

a. What does success mean to you?

b. Do you have documentation processes? Can you share them with us?

c. What other tools do you use?

d. What metrics are you looking to track/measure?

e. Is there anything extra our team can do to ensure a delightful experience for you?

f. What’s something that impressed you with an earlier vendor?

g. What made you choose us? (brand trust, price, advertising, quality, product advocate, or prior experience with the product)

2. About the customer

This first section of the questionnaire helps onboarding teams to understand how the customer’s team is organized and functions. It provides insight into how structured the customer’s internal processes are.

Pro-tip: Instead of dealing with fires as and when they arise, create a more proactive onboarding plan for customers. This will help you level up on your whole customer onboarding game.

a. How many teams or team members are typically involved in a project, and what are their roles? / What does your current team structure look like?

b. What are some of your top challenges, and how do you envision solving them with our product?

c. How do you process handoffs within the team?

d. How does your internal team communication happen?

e. Are you looking to automate any of the processes?

3. Project-specific information

This next set of questions helps customer onboarding teams understand project-specific details. It shows teams the path to dealing with any contingencies that may arise and which stakeholders to involve in the project.

Pro-tip: Make the customer POC the hero of your customer onboarding process and get customers to co-own the success criteria for the entire onboarding. Remember to partner with the customer for the entire process and collect feedback on the process from time to time.

a. Who owns the project at your end? / Who is the hero (or the POC) at your end?

b. Do you have a steering committee? / Who do we contact during emergencies?

c. Can you please describe your project goals? / Why did you choose us? / What are some pain points you hope to solve with our product/service?

d. Do you have any playbooks or pre-set templates for your processes? If yes, can you please let us know if there’s anything we need to be mindful of?

e. Do you have a go-live expectation? / How soon do we need to go live? / Do you have a timeline expectation for this project?

f. Have you worked with a similar product/service in the past? If so, what made you choose us?

g. Would you like any user training manuals from our side?

Creating a triumphant customer onboarding questionnaire

Creating a winning questionnaire for your customer onboarding project helps you turn the spotlight on your customers. It lets them highlight their specific needs while also giving your customer onboarding team an overview of their business. The questionnaire helps you develop a reliable framework for streamlining your customer onboarding process. Rocketlane, a collaborative customer onboarding platform, aims to do just that and more! All you have to do is sign up for a free trial today to see for yourself or hop on a call with our team to find out more.

For more easy-to-use, customizable, free customer onboarding templates for every stage of your onboarding journey, head here.

Happy Onboarding!

More customer onboarding resources

  1. Setting up your first customer onboarding team
  2. 5 easy ways to improve your customer onboarding process
  3. 10 project management tools you can use for customer onboarding

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Shuvedha Subramaniam
Content Marketer @ Rocketlane

Marketing Intern @ Rocketlane. An Advocate by choice and a penwoman for the love of it. When the world zips, I like to zoink. Also, being happy by being kind.

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