Cisco is introducing new capabilities to help partners build their own renewals practice by automating the process.
The top reason customers don’t renew is because they don’t know renewals are available, according to Cisco’s director of digital lifecycle journeys John Stone. At the same time, partners often ignore renewals due to the time and resources it takes compared to the relatively low margin.
“Still, capturing long tail renewals can add up to substantial revenue for your business due to their sheer volume. They also drive partner profitability, rebates and customer satisfaction: they can be the glue that connects you with your customers over the long haul,” Stone wrote in a blog post.
In an effort to remove the friction from renewals, Cisco has introduced the Renewals Commerce Automation functionality residing in the Lifecycle Advantage program, Cisco’s digital engagement program for maximising recurring revenue.
Renewals Commerce Automation allows partners to access all customer renewals information from the Lifecycle Advantage portal, making it easier to create automated co-branded renewals emails. It also allows partners to automatically generate a quote with their own pricing, which customers can use to view, edit and place orders online.
Partners can also toggle who does and doesn’t receive an email reminder, which Stone said was the most requested format for receiving renewal notices.
“Lower dollar renewals can be highly profitable but they require a lot of work on the part of the partner, which makes them a low priority,” said Stone.
“We recognised that to transact them in a way that makes sense for all of us – Cisco, our partners, and our customers — we needed to come up with a streamlined, simplified experience, backed by accurate data and automation to create scale.”
Cisco’s Lifecycle Advantage is free to sign up for on Cisco’s website.
The latest renewals push echoes sentiments from Cisco’s local channel reps, who told CRN in March this year that the company would take steps to improve renewals performance. Cisco’s ANZ channel chief Tara Ridley told CRN that the vendor will hire 20 renewals specialists to work with partners to secure renewals. According to Ridley, Cisco’s renewal rate was 77 percent in FY18.