Ok, so you work for a consumer goods company, and for one reason or another, you want your customers to register their product. Maybe it’s so you can send them maintenance reminders, or keep them up to date on when to purchase replacement parts or accessories…or maybe you just want to capture their information! Whatever your motives, there’s no doubt you want that valuable customer information. But here’s the thing: your customers aren’t filling out your product registration cards. It’s a tough reality to face, but it’s true! Product registration rates consistently hover around 20 percent. And while we might shrug it off and use the “there’s no silver bullet for product registration” excuse, the truth is, there is a silver bullet. And you already possess it.
You Are Your Own Customer
Even if you yourself don’t fit into your ideal customer profile, that doesn’t mean you can’t provide some seriously valuable insights. After all, you are a consumer, therefore you think and act like a consumer. So why look any further than your own insights for a quick audit on your current product registration process? Here’s how to start:
Purchase One of Your Products
Don’t worry, you can always return it if you end up putting it on your own personal card, but I’d highly recommend pitching this as a spend on your corporate account. But no matter how you get your hands on one of your products, purchase it and see where your product registration card ends up during your unboxing experience. As you unbox your product, think of the potential steps your customers are going through: What are they unwrapping and assembling? How much other paper do they have to shuffle through in order to get to your product registration card? Where did that card end up in the shuffle of shipping and handling, if you ordered it online? Does your product have a lot of protective packaging that would make it easier for a small registration card to get lost in? Odds are, multiple teams were involved in coming up with the packaging, registration card, product manuals, setup instructions…get the picture? There’s a good chance a customer-first approach was lost in the shuffle of getting a new product and all of its literature out the door.
Actually Fill out the Registration Card
I’m not talking about looking at your registration card and thinking about the steps you’d have to take to fill it out. I’m talking about actually filling it out. First of all, think through whether or not you would have been motivated to fill out the card if you weren’t on this product registration mission. What sort of language is used to tell you what benefits you’d receive for registering your product? Then, consider the information your customer would need to find in order to complete the card. Are there any barriers? Do you ask for a serial number, but not specify where the serial number can be found? Are the lines too short to fit your information onto without going into the margins or off the card? How long does it take you to fill out the card (yes, actually time yourself. Over 80 percent of consumers say they don’t fill out forms because they’re too long)? These are seemingly small frustration that could add up to your customer tossing the card aside.
Mail the Card
Again…you know where I’m going with this. Actually mail the card. See how long it takes for you to get a follow up email from your brand signaling that they received your information. And maybe you realize that you never thought about setting up a “welcome” email for your newly registered customers. This is your opportunity to think through what you would have liked to receive right off the bat! Think about it: This is your first post-purchase moment with your customers, and this first impression could mean the difference between a one-time customer and a brand loyalist for life.
Now that you’ve completed your audit, it’s time to get to work in making your product registration experience even more seamless for your customers. Think through the areas that you found to be frustrating, tedious, or confusing, and brainstorm fixes for those things first. If you’re looking for more advice on how to ensure that your product registration experience is actually paying off, check out our eBook, How to Create a Product Registration Experience that Actually Works.