How to Set Up a Customer Training Program

Published on November 11, 2022

How to Set Up a Customer Training Program

Customer training is the process of educating a customer on how to use your product, service, or offering to meet their unique goals. With some offerings there can be a higher learning curve. If a customer (or maybe a potential customer) doesn't fully understand the extent of what you are offering and how they can take advantage of it, then it's likely that they will have a worse experience and may eventually stop using it. This can often result in lost business for you, so it can be to your advantage to help train customers as they come on board.

But customer training is trickier than employee training because it can't be forced in the same way. You often aren't able to say "you must" and often have to make your training as helpful and engaging as possible in order to increase the likelihood that it will be used. This also means that your training must be as easy to access as possible, with as little friction as possible to make it easy to find, and take the training. If your training isn't easy to access, helpful, and engaging, then it is likely no one will take advantage of it.

Advantages of Customer Training

Customer training is well worth the effort you put into it. TSIA did a survey that showed that there is a large correlation between training and adoption. It showed that additional training helped with:

  • More frequent usage of your product or offering
  • Using more of the product's features and functionality
  • More independence, less reliance on customer support

Customer Training Program Examples

  • Onboarding for Software
    A customer signs up but doesn't know how to use the software yet. The training could communicate the complexities of the software, the initial set up that the customer may need to do, the information they may need to collect (and the formatting required) to input into the tool, how to use the interface, and how to achieve their desired result.
  • Physical Products or Machinery
    When using a new product or operating a piece of machinery it is important to know what is possible and how it works. This can be how to set it up and get it working, important regular maintenance, or even safety related messaging. Customers learn better through interactive training rather than only the printed manual.
  • Complex sales process
    If a customer's first engagement with you is only an initial step in a complex sales process, it can be good to help them understand the steps in the process and what will be required of them at various times. This can help make the process go more smoothly and help the customer become less aggravated about it.
  • Sales Teams
    With many organizations you may have other groups who are selling your product alongside other products. You are depending on these sales people but they may not have a great understanding of how it works. Providing them with additional materials on the benefits and advantages it can provide their customers.
  • Suppliers or Partners
    When you have another organization or team using your offering, you may need them to know how to effectively use your offering, or simply the best way to work with your team. This other team can be more effective once they know more about how you work and what is possible.

Types of Customer Training

  • In Person
    In person training can create a relationship with your customer and allow them to know to know your company as well as your product. In person training can be much more effective, but is significantly harder to maintain the quality of over time.
  • Online Webinars
    Pre-recorded sessions can help to explain things through video that you might otherwise have to explain over and over to each new customer. In addition, it provides more of a personal touch as you get to know the instructor.
  • Knowledge Bases
    Self serve information should always be available if at all possible. This makes the articles searchable so that if a customer has a specific question they can find it quickly.
  • Online Courses
    These types of courses can contain a variety of content types. Videos can provide relatable personalities and visual content, quizzes can be interactive, documents can be downloaded for future reference, and more. Courses allow learners to go at their own pace and finish on their own time.
  • Why Online Courses Are a Worthwhile Addition

    Online courses are worth their weight in gold. According to eLearning Industry students can learn at their own pace, gain more knowledge, and retain more. It can also be more efficient than many other forms of training. It can combine the best parts of each kind of training with videos, interactive quizzes, and downloadable materials. As our world moves increasingly online, more and more students coming out of school are familiar with online learning and are looking for it as an option.

    How to Deliver Customer Training Courses Online

    Signing a customer up for a learning management system like you might use for your employees could seem a little overkill. They would probably have to register, remember their password, and find the particular type of training they are looking for. Consider using our customer training tool Groundwork1. This LMS training platform doesn't require customers to register or log in at all! Once enrolled a customer receives all of their course content via email. Interactive modules like videos and quizzes bring them to a personalized landing page that allows them to complete course content while keeping track of who is completing the materials.

    Delivering the training content via email allows customers the flexibility to do their training where they choose. It can be at their computer, or sitting on their couch on their phone. The training is mobile friendly and works just about anywhere. It also allows them to look back at the training materials much later and find them again in their email inbox, which is where many people keep important information they want to be able to find again at a later date.

    The platform comes with a flexible lesson designer that allows you to drag and drop different kinds of training content into each lesson email. You can even schedule a drip campaign where certain lessons are delivered on a schedule or are dependent on the completion of another lesson before they are delivered. This gives you the ability to structure your lesson according to your learner's needs and time lessons so they are delivered when they are the most helpful.

    While putting together online training courses can take a lot of time, the investment is worth it as the impact of customer training can make a lasting difference in your business. Customers who understand your products better are going to use them more and possibly even recommend them to others. If done well it can reduce customer support costs and allow you build relationships with customers at scale.

    Check out the Groundwork1 platform for your customer training needs and let us know if you have questions about it's capabilities.

employee training on laptop

Here to help

Whether you are deciding if this is the right solution for you, or ready to send out your first employee training emails, our goal is to help your team's training to go as smoothly as possible. So please ask any questions you have.