16 SaaS Account Management Best Practices

16 SaaS Account Management Best Practices

Managing customer accounts is a pretty tough job, but you know what’s even tougher? SaaS account management.

With the emergence of software-as-a-service (SaaS) companies, the role of account managers has also evolved – and gotten harder. An account manager now has to do much more than just look at the finance side of things.

In this article, we will go over the responsibilities of a SaaS account manager and share tried-and-true strategies they can implement to drive product growth.


  • As the name suggests, SaaS account management is the process of managing customer relationships.
  • Strategic account management increases customer lifetime value, drives up referrals and revenue, and reduces customer churn.
  • An account manager performs several tasks, all of which revolve around cultivating long-term customer relationships. Some of the key responsibilities include:
  1. Setting clear objectives for various client accounts.
  2. Personalizing customer workflows according to their needs.
  3. Retaining and expanding existing accounts.
  • There are several best practices that all account managers need to keep in mind. A few of these are:
  1. Try to better understand customers by mapping their user personas.
  2. Design a successful onboarding flow to help users unlock value quicker.
  3. Introduce interactive walkthroughs and adoption tooltips to increase engagement.
  4. Create added value for existing users by cross-selling and upselling.
  5. Collect and act on customer feedback to improve satisfaction.
  6. Perform conversion funnel and related analysis to uncover friction points.
  7. Reward loyal customers and celebrate customer wins to let them know you care.
  • If you’re looking to improve your account management strategy, book a Userpilot Demo to see how we can help you with it.

What is SaaS account management?

SaaS account management is the process of managing your customers’ long-term relationships with your business.

In other words, it is a form of customer relationship management meant to resolve customer pain points and increase revenue.

Benefits of strategic account management for SaaS companies

No SaaS company can grow without effective account management. Only when you take good care of your key user accounts will you be able to enjoy repeat usage and more revenue?

There are several other benefits that strategic SaaS account management offers, as discussed below.

  • Reduce churn rate: Account management helps uncover the root cause behind why users leave products. Knowing the cause, it becomes easier for account managers to fix the problem and reduce churn.
  • Get more referrals: Account management focuses on retaining existing accounts by keeping them satisfied. Such satisfied customers engage in word-of-mouth marketing, inevitably leading to increased referrals.
  • Maximize customer lifetime value (LTV): The longer a customer sticks around, the greater revenue they bring. Account management helps achieve such a long-term relationship by increasing LTV through various upselling techniques.
  • Boost revenue: Lastly, all the above factors combine to increase revenue. From new referrals to a long-lasting relationship with customers, account management helps boost your company’s growth rate.

Key responsibilities of account managers

Developing strong customer relationships is no longer the only thing a successful account manager has to take care of. There are multiple other key roles and responsibilities as well, which we discuss below.

  • Set clear objectives and expectations for client accounts: Goal setting for client accounts helps outline a clear direction and steps to take to ensure goal attainment. These goals may vary across client accounts.
  • Personalize customer workflows based on their needs: Each user is unique and might need guidance at different touchpoints within your SaaS product. Account managers need to help fulfill these needs by offering personalized workflows to improve engagement rates.
  • Maintain and grow existing accounts: The account manager needs to grow the customer base to enjoy increased revenue. Customer growth can be achieved by expanding existing accounts or signing on new customers.

16 SaaS account management best practices

Now that you know why SaaS account management is so important, it’s time to look at how exactly you can implement it. There are some definite dos and don’ts to keep in mind because one wrong move could mean losing a valuable customer relationship.

So without further ado, let’s dive into the valuable SaaS account management best practices every account manager needs to know.

Map user personas to better understand the customers

User personas are customers who are clumped together in a group based on similar likes, dislikes, needs, and behavior patterns.

Since different types of personas are unique in their behavior, you can better understand them by mapping them out. This way, you’ll be able to discover pain points, motivations, and communication preferences of each user segment type.

With all this information, you can now cater to the customer’s specific needs. For example, you can personalize your value proposition, in-app messaging, and communication style to suit user preferences.

User persona example
User persona example.

Develop an effective onboarding flow to drive customer success

An onboarding flow is a way of introducing new customers to your SaaS products or existing customers to new tools and features.

Designing an effective onboarding process is essential for customer success. With onboarding, you can guide users to relevant tools, thereby helping them unlock value quickly. This translates into improved engagement and an overall good first impression.

Just remember that the onboarding needs to be personalized. To do that, start by collecting customer data with a welcome survey. Then use this data for customer segmentation and triggering the appropriate personalized onboarding flow.

Collect customer data via a welcome survey
Collect customer data via a welcome survey.

Drive product stickiness with interactive walkthroughs

Product stickiness is when users keep returning to your product because it keeps providing them with value.

To improve stickiness, you can offer contextual guidance about the specific feature users are interacting with. This way, by providing help exactly where needed, the account manager can improve adoption and feature engagement.

Another way is by offering interactive walkthroughs. Walkthroughs help shorten the learning curve and reduce friction since you’re there to help at every step.

Interactive walkthroughs
Interactive walkthroughs with Userpilot.

Collect feedback and act on it to improve customer satisfaction

An easy hack for any SaaS account manager is to focus on collecting customer feedback wherever possible.

Start off by setting up routine trigger surveys throughout the customer journey to collect feedback on user needs. Once you have all that data, implement the feedback and suggestions.

Lastly, don’t forget to close the feedback loop by letting customers know you acted on their input. This might seem like a small step, but in reality, it does wonders to build user trust and improve satisfaction.

Design feedback surveys with Userpilot
Design feedback surveys with Userpilot.

Offer self-service options to reduce user friction

Having a customer support team is important, but you don’t want customers to spend hours waiting for a response. Instead, work to equip customers to troubleshoot independently and resolve problems quickly.

As an account manager, you can do this by creating an in-app resource center users can turn to when needed. Try to include multiple formats of resources in there to cater to all learning styles. For example, add FAQs, video tutorials, interactive guides, and blogs and articles.

Empowering customers through such a self-service experience leads to an overall improved customer experience.

Design an in-app resource center with Userpilot
Design an in-app resource center with Userpilot.

Celebrate small wins with gamification to increase customer engagement

A key account management best practice: always celebrate customer success. Every time a customer achieves a milestone, celebrate the win with them!

Do this by making use of gamification strategies, such as triggering a celebratory message or badge. This helps show customers that you truly care about their success.

Moreover, seeing the celebration gives customers a small dose of dopamine. To get that same “reward” feeling again, customers are more likely to perform similar actions. This is called the Hook Model, and it is very effective in helping SaaS businesses increase product engagement.

Celebrate customer wins
Celebrate customer wins.

Introduce existing customers to unused features to drive more value

Once a user adopts a key feature, that doesn’t mean your job as a SaaS account manager is over.

Instead, you can help users unlock additional value by introducing them to related secondary features. For example, use contextual in-app messages, such as tooltips, to drive feature discovery. Or introduce secondary onboarding and new feature announcement guides to improve product adoption.

These steps help further integrate your product into customer lives. And the more integrated a product is, the less likely customers are to churn.

Use tooltips for feature discovery
Use tooltips for feature discovery.

Use webinars to educate customers on your product and industry

A common SaaS account management best practice is to focus on delivering customers with continuous education and value.

Webinars are a great way to do just that. They provide face-to-face communication, thereby helping humanize and personalize your brand. Plus, in certain instances, webinars also serve as an effective way of helping customers troubleshoot.

Check out our webinars
Check out our webinars.

Reward loyal customers to strengthen their relationship with your SaaS company

It’s important to acknowledge the value that loyal customers create for your business. Rewarding such customers only helps further strengthen the emotional connection between you two even more.

Loyalty programs are a great way of rewarding customers. In SaaS companies, a prevalent example of loyalty programs is referral programs. Through these programs, you ask customers to refer you to their friends by acting as a brand advocate in return for rewards and benefits.

Referral programs for loyal customers
Referral programs for loyal customers.

Prompt contextual upgrades to increase lifetime value

As a SaaS account manager, a key responsibility is to create expansion opportunities for existing users. This means tracking users to see when they are most likely to buy and setting up trigger updates at those points.

Loom provides a good example of upselling. They’ve enabled their AI feature for users using a reverse trial. Once users understand and come to enjoy the feature, Loom tells them the trial is ending.

Loom has narrowed down the most contextual place to prompt users to upgrade: right when they last benefited from the feature. Prompting contextual upgrades in this way helps companies keep customers around for longer, thereby increasing lifetime value.

How Loom gets users to upgrade
How Loom gets users to upgrade.

Use funnel analysis to identify drop-off points in the user journey and fix them

Conversion funnel analysis is a powerful tool used to see where most users are dropping off, i.e., leaving the funnel.

To better understand why and to remove these friction points, you can pair funnel analysis with other analytics data, like heatmaps, as well. By working to resolve these problem areas, you provide users with a smoother, more seamless customer experience.

Perform funnel analysis with Userpilot
Perform funnel analysis with Userpilot.

Prevent involuntary churn with in-app messages and emails

Involuntary churn is when customers discontinue their subscriptions due to reasons outside of their control. Typically, this happens because of payment processing issues.

Combat this type of churn by adding in-app messages or notification banners reminding customers to update their information before the card expires. The goal is to save users the pain of not being able to access their account when they most need it.

Customers will thank you for being proactive and saving them from churning. In addition, you’ll also help save the company from any revenue loss.

Remind users to update credit card information
Remind users to update credit card information.

Continuously optimize your customer retention strategy

Developing a sound customer retention strategy is a key job for every account manager. But developing it isn’t enough. You also need to continuously keep improving the strategy to ensure that it is bulletproof.

To optimize your strategy, start by conducting a retention analysis to better understand churn. Then, based on your findings, you can iterate your strategy. Performing such an analysis is crucial for account managers because it helps maintain healthy growth by constantly improving retention.

Perform retention analysis with Userpilot
Perform retention analysis with Userpilot.

Track product usage data to identify at-risk customers

As an account manager, you need to keep an eye out for at-risk customers who might churn. You can do so by monitoring product usage to understand users’ engagement with your product.

For instance, these might be users who haven’t shown adoption with a key feature perfect for their use case. Perhaps they’re users who have been disengaged throughout the last period.

Once you discover the at-risk customers, you can then take action to proactively retain them.

Track product usage to study engagement
Track product usage to study engagement.

Trigger re-engagement emails for inactive user accounts

As an account manager, you don’t just deal with active customers. You also have to keep the inactive disengaged customers in mind.

Try re-engaging inactive users by sending win-back emails or retention emails. Use these emails to remind them of your product’s benefits, share case studies of successful customers, and send helpful educational content their way.

All of this will translate into greater retention and increased engagement for your product.

Re-engagement email example
Re-engagement email example.

Set up a comprehensive offboarding flow to prevent and reduce churn

An offboarding flow includes all the activities triggered when a customer decides to end their subscription.

The offboarding process is your last chance to turn things around.

To do so, start by asking users why they’re leaving. Once you know the reason, you can fix it to stop future users from churning.

Design a churn survey in Userpilot
Design a churn survey in Userpilot.

Based on their answer, you can give users a compelling alternative other than simply leaving. For example, if pricing is the reason, you can offer a discount or a cheaper plan.

One last shot to prevent churn
One last shot to prevent churn.


In today’s subscription-based model of doing business, building great customer relationships is no longer something you can ignore. It has become a need because long-lasting relationships help drive engagement and improve revenues.

To achieve all that, you need to implement a sound SaaS account management strategy. If you’re ever confused about how to do that, just use these best practices! They’re all any account manager needs to improve customer retention.

Want to get started with effective SaaS account management? Get a Userpilot Demo and see how you can better manage customer relationships.

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