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4 Strategies for Optimizing Your Subscription Experience to Cut Churn (+ Examples From Top Brands)

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1. What Makes Stay Different

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2. What Makes Stay Different

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3. What Makes Stay Different

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4. What Makes Stay Different

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“We switched from Recharge and wanted a subscription sapp that was highly stable and would grow with us since we have a big recurring base. Stay AI has been great. Reliable, great team to work with, highly professional, and the best of many options we evaluated after talking to the founding teams and references”
Jaron Lukas, Founder & CEO

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“We switched from Recharge and wanted a subscription sapp that was highly stable and would grow with us since we have a big recurring base. Stay AI has been great. Reliable, great team to work with, highly professional, and the best of many options we evaluated after talking to the founding teams and references”
Raven Beria, Director of Marketing

44%

Increase in 2nd Order ConversionSecond line of text #2
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“We switched from Recharge and wanted a subscription sapp that was highly stable and would grow with us since we have a big recurring base. Stay AI has been great. Reliable, great team to work with, highly professional, and the best of many options we evaluated after talking to the founding teams and references”
Jaron Lukas, Founder & CEO

44%

Increase in 2nd Order ConversionSecond line of text #3
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“We switched from Recharge and wanted a subscription sapp that was highly stable and would grow with us since we have a big recurring base. Stay AI has been great. Reliable, great team to work with, highly professional, and the best of many options we evaluated after talking to the founding teams and references”
Raven Beria, Director of Marketing

44%

Increase in 2nd Order ConversionSecond line of text
card-slide-image
“We switched from Recharge and wanted a subscription sapp that was highly stable and would grow with us since we have a big recurring base. Stay AI has been great. Reliable, great team to work with, highly professional, and the best of many options we evaluated after talking to the founding teams and references”
Jaron Lukas, Founder & CEO

44

Increase in 2nd Order ConversionSecond line of text #2 #2
card-slide-image
“We switched from Recharge and wanted a subscription sapp that was highly stable and would grow with us since we have a big recurring base. Stay AI has been great. Reliable, great team to work with, highly professional, and the best of many options we evaluated after talking to the founding teams and references”
Raven Beria, Director of Marketing

44%

Increase in 2nd Order ConversionSecond line of text #2
card-slide-image
“We switched from Recharge and wanted a subscription sapp that was highly stable and would grow with us since we have a big recurring base. Stay AI has been great. Reliable, great team to work with, highly professional, and the best of many options we evaluated after talking to the founding teams and references”
Jaron Lukas, Founder & CEO

44%

Increase in 2nd Order ConversionSecond line of text #3
card-slide-image
“We switched from Recharge and wanted a subscription sapp that was highly stable and would grow with us since we have a big recurring base. Stay AI has been great. Reliable, great team to work with, highly professional, and the best of many options we evaluated after talking to the founding teams and references”
Raven Beria, Director of Marketing

44%

Increase in 2nd Order ConversionSecond line of text
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Are there discounts for yearly plans?

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Are there discounts for yearly plans?

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Are there discounts for yearly plans?

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Blog/Introducing Stay AI’s New Churn Reporting Dashboard

Introducing Stay AI’s New Churn Reporting Dashboard

Understanding and mitigating your churn is essential for sustaining growth and long-term success. That’s why we made our new churn dashboard, where you can easily monitor and analyze your subscriber churn all in one place.

This powerful tool puts your most essential data and metrics in a single location, so you can take control of your churn rates and unlock actionable insights. Get a comprehensive, bird’s-eye view of your churn, or deep-dive into critical trends over time.

Let’s walk through the features and functionality of our Churn Reporting dashboard so you can hit the ground running.


1. Cohort Comparison Graph

The first of its kind in the subscription space, this graph enables a high level view of churn based on more than 15 metrics. To dig deeper into specific questions, you can also build comparison views to put two of those 15+ metrics up against each other.

First, a couple foundational notes about how to use it: 

1. Metrics are split out by monthly cohort; i.e., by the month the subscriber created their new subscription. So, as an example, every subscription started by a new subscriber in June 2023 would be a part of the June 2023 cohort.

2. At the top of the graph, “Applied Category” is your first selected metric. You can look at this metric alone, or you can choose another metric to compare it against by clicking “Compare Metric.” The Applied Category (left) metrics displays in pink, and the comparison metric on the right displays in purple.

Cohort Comparison Graph: Example Use Cases

Looking at just one metric in the cohort graph is pretty simple — and you can scroll down to see the list of churn metrics and their definitions at the bottom of this post. The comparison graphs go a little deeper, so you can see one metric right against the other.

What is the value of your average subscription order, and how is it trending? First, compare Order Growth Rate to Revenue Growth Rate. Is one increasing or decreasing faster than the other? For example, if Order Growth Rate is increasing much faster than Revenue Growth Rate, your subscription purchases are probably lowering in value. Understanding that means that you can now make a data-driven decision about what to do next, like run an upsell promotion via ExperienceEngine to drive up average order value.

How is retention rate trending, by revenue and by subscriber? Compare Revenue Retention to Subscriber Retention to see how each is headed directionally. If both are steadily decreasing, it might be time to offer a free gift promotion to increase monthly retention. On the other hand, if subscriber retention is increasing but revenue is decreasing, you know that each subscriber is spending less — so you could consider a discounted upsell campaign instead of a free gift, to increase that AOV.

2. Revenue and Order Retention Graph

This graph gives you an overview of revenue and order retention by monthly cohort so you can see how each is performing. 

You can toggle between Revenue and Subscription Retention, for if you want to see active subscriptions, and Revenue and Subscriber Retention, which will show you the number of active subscribers instead.

So, if you’re looking this graph, for example, you know that in the September cohort:
– 137 new subscribers were created
– 99 of those subscribers are still active at this time
– those 99 subscribers generated $48,605 of revenue this month

You can also sort within the graph to see which cohorts are performing best, and export data to campaign towards or reward the cohorts accordingly.

If you look at which cohorts are performing best, you can go back to your broader business analytics to see if there are specific things you did that month to draw in higher-value subscribers, like a certain promotion or ramp-up on a specific channel.

3. Churn by Order Graph

We’ve integrated our machine learning model with our drilled-down analytics to help you pinpoint the time of highest churn risk in your subscription program.

While most of the graphs we’ve looked at so far have been by monthly cohort, this one is broken out by order cycle.

Churn Risk is calculated by order cycle with the help of our ML model, considering factors like inconsistent ordering, order date changes, order skips, and more. Then, you can also see how churn risk fluctuates by cycle — in other words, is churn risk higher or lower on order cycle 4?

In this example, you can see the churn risk on cycle 4 does jump by over 6%. That could be a strategic spot to start testing freebies or promotions in advance of cycle 4 to decrease that 21% churn risk.

4. Churn Reporting Data

These analytics report on RetentionEngine metrics, so you can get a ton of at-a-glance information about your current retention position and how it’s trending over time:


Subscription Save Rate: What percentage of churning customers are saved by your follow-up cancel flows?

Estimated MRR Saved: How much estimated monthly recurring revenue did those saved customers help you retain?

Same Day Cancellation: How many customers subscribe for the discount, just to turn around and cancel the same day?

Exit Survey Performance: Why are subscribers churning, and how many were saved by a follow-up treatment?

SKU-Based Churn: Which products were churning customers subscribed to?
Outcome Breakdown: Which follow-up treatments saved the most subscribers, by cancel reason?

5. New & Churned Report

This has been a long-requested graph from our customers. This is a simple, by-day look at how many new subscriptions were started, and how many existing subscriptions churned — along with the email addresses associated with each.

Pro Tip: export and use the email information in this report to target specific customers based on the date of acquisition or churn.

6. Overall Cohort Performance Report

This graph will give you a high-level view of a set of five metrics across monthly cohorts. Whereas the Cohort Comparison graph is made to identify trends and dig into specific metrics, this overall performance graph gives you a bird’s eye view of LTV, Cumulative Revenue, LTO, and Cumulative Orders.

Pro Tip: Use this graph to get a quick glance understanding of the LTV of each month’s acquired subscribers, and then review the promotional messaging or ad creative running that month for optimization.

7. Forecasting by Order Report

Understanding when your orders will fire is critical for inventory tracking and financial planning. You can also segment this data by first, second, and third recurring order. Navigate month over month to upcoming dates, and export as needed.


Churn Metrics: Definition “Cheat Sheet”

  • First Subscription At: Refers to the month this cohort of customers started their first subscription.
  • New Subscribers: Customers who created their first subscription within the allocated time period.
  • New Subscription Revenue: Revenue generated from first-time subscriptions.
  • Months Since First Subscription Order: 0 indicates the month in which the customers’ first subscription was created. 1 indicates the first month since the customer’s first subscription was created, etc.
  • New Revenue: Total revenue generated by that cohort’s subscribers, as recorded by month since the first subscription order.
  • Revenue Retention: New revenue / 1st month revenue.
  • Revenue Per Subscriber: New revenue / number of subscribers.
  • Cumulative Revenue: Total revenue by cohort, recorded by month since the first subscription order.
  • Revenue Growth Rate: Cumulative revenue / 1st month cumulative revenue.
  • LTV: Cumulative revenue / number of subscribers, by cohort.
  • New Orders: Total order count, recorded by month since the first subscription order.
  • Order Retention: New orders / 1st month new orders.
  • Orders Per Subscriber: New orders / number of subscribers.
  • Cumulative Orders: Total order count by cohort, recorded by month since the first subscription order.
  • Order Growth Rate: Cumulative orders / 1st month number of orders.
  • LTO: (Lifetime orders) Cumulative orders / 1st month number of subscribers.
  • Subscribers with Orders: Total number of subscribers who placed an order that month.
  • Subscriber Retention: Total number of subscribers who placed orders / number of subscribers within the cohort who placed orders in month one.
  • Subscriptions Per Subscriber: Subscriptions with orders placed that month / number of subscribers in the cohort.

Wrapping Up

We built our churn dashboard to be accessible for both seasoned data analysts and business owners alike, so you can reshape your business strategy for long-term growth. If you’re not a Stay Ai customer yet and would like to hear more about how it works, you can book a demo here. And if you already use Stay Ai, feel free to reach out to your CSM with any questions you may have.

Looking to boost your subscription retention rate, or scale up your subscription program’s profit margins? Stay Ai’s out-of-the-box tools are designed to boost your subscription revenue, while delighting your VIP customers.

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Just click Get Started below to chat with our team of subscription & retention experts.

Blog/Winning Back Churned Subscribers: 11 Tips & Tricks

Winning Back Churned Subscribers: 11 Tips & Tricks

After working with hundreds of ecommerce brands, we’ve seen so many brands miss out on a massive opportunity – winning back churned subscribers.

But that experience has also helped us to illuminate with strategies truly do work. The key? Personalization.

Personalization is ultimately about putting the right offer in front of the right person, at the right time.

Applying personalization in your subscriber winback experiences can provide massive value. We won’t lie to you – this can be really complex, but it doesn’t have to be. And if you’re using Stay Ai’s deep Klaviyo integration, it can actually be a breeze.

Let’s dig in to how you can effectively win back your churned subscribers, an unlock that untapped revenue.


11 Tips to Re-Engage Churned Subscribers: Right Offer, Right Person, Right Time

The two big keys to unlocking the winback puzzle are segmentation and personalization. From a tech perspective, this ideally involves using RetentionEngine to survey cancellation-intent customers, then passing that data from Stay Ai back to Klaviyo for use in future segmentation.

Stay Ai’s integration with Klaviyo not only provides a cancellation event trigger, but also passes critical subscriber data for further detailed segmentation. Here’s a peek of what that looks like when building email flows in Klaviyo.

But on the strategy side, you need to do some careful thinking about how to segment your churned customers and the best tactics for getting them back. We’re going to break this down into 3 buckets: optimizing offer timing, delivering the right offer, and building messaging that resonates.

Winning Back Churned Subscribers: Finding the Right Time & Place to Re-Engage

Tip #1: Consider the churned subscriber’s cancellation reasons.

When you’re determining when to hit a churned subscriber with a winback offer, you need to make sure you’re meaningfully segmenting by cancellation reason. Why? Because if a subscriber cancelled due to “too much product”, and you shoot them a winback email in just 5 days, you’re only going to cause frustration. Featured: Stay Ai’s RetentionEngine

Tip #2: Work off of seasonal customer behaviors.

Consider the periods of time each year in which people crave your product offerings most. For Health & Wellness brands, a winback nudge right around New Years is perfect for helping customers to get back on track with their goals. For food & beverage brands, the right time to launch a winback campaign might be to align with fall-favorite flavors, like a Pumpkin Spice SKU. Featured: Aura Bora

Tip #3: Leverage big announcements.

If you have a new product drop coming, or a big brand announcement, that’s a great time to launch a winback flow. Send a campaign to former subscribers so they know what’s new, or highlight a big brand event or milestone to renew their interest. Featured: Covey

Tip #4: Trigger a winback flow if a former subscriber makes a one-time purchase.

You have an enormous amount of data at your disposal – and the perfect trigger for a subscription winback flow is when a cancelled subscriber places a one-time purchase. This is a clear indication that they’re still interested in your brand’s offerings. Featured: Outstanding Foods

Winning Back Churned Subscribers: Delivering the Right Offer

Tip #5: A/B Test Promotional Offers

If you plan to incorporate a discount or free gift offer, it’s smart to A/B test promotional offers before mass-deployment to identify what has the highest take rate. We recommend testing a few things: % off discount versus free gift, $ off discount versus free gift, and % off discount versus $ off discount. Featured: Obvi’s Stay Ai ExperienceEngine Promotion

Tip #6: Tailor offers based on subscriber product preferences.

Use subscription SKU data passed into Klaviyo to deliver offers on products that a customer will likely be excited to purchase. For example, if the churned customer previously purchased shampoo from your brand, send an offer for a new conditioner formulation, rather than for a SKU in a different category. Featured: Lifeboost’s Stay Ai ExperienceEngine Promotion

Tip #7: Tailor offers to account for subscribers’ cancellation reasons.

Like we mentioned when discussing winback flow timing, it’s important to consider why your customer cancelled before slinging them an offer. Example: a customer that churned due to price and wasn’t saved by a 10% off cancellation rebuttal likely won’t take you up on a 10% off winback flow discount. Featured: Harmless Harvest

Winning Back Churned Subscribers: Crafting Messaging that Resonates

Tip #8: Test messaging and iterate before mass-deployment.

We absolutely do not recommend mass emailing your churned subscribers without testing your copy first. Instead, do some testing to find out what messaging resonates, then iterate. Some ideas: test FOMO messaging, exclusivity, highlighting subscription value props, and more. Featured: Beekeeper’s Naturals

Tip #10: Personalize winback emails or SMS messages as much as you can.

Simply stated, customers love to feel seen. Simply referencing the products a customer was formerly subscribed to, how long they were subscribed for, and/or empathizing with their reason for cancelling their subscription can have massive impact. Featured: Beekeeper’s Naturals

Tip #10: Incorporate social proof into your winback messaging.

There are few times when including social proof will do you a disservice, truly. Make sure to include UGC or customer testimonials in your winback flows to add that extra “oomph” and nudge a purchase. Featured: Tenzo

Tip #11: Include opportunities to provide feedback in the winback flow.

Unfortunately, sometimes you won’t score that winback. But that doesn’t mean your efforts are a total loss. We highly recommend taking advantage of this final customer touchpoint to understand what your brand could have done better to retain this subscriber. Featured: A Pup Above


Real-World Examples: Subscription Winback Emails That Sell

A Pup Above
This subscription reactivation email combines humor and an emotional appeal with a reactivation discount to incentive churned customers to resubscribe. A Pup Above keeps it light, while reinforcing the subscription value props they offer: savings, convenience, and flexibility. They also offer an opportunity to provide feedback, and link out to social proof. Absolute 10/10!

Beekeeper’s Naturals
This first email in this series to churned subscribers reinforces the value of both the product and the subscription at a glance, plus offers an opportunity for recipients to offer feedback. Check out the 3 varying CTAs – “we need your help”, “contact us”, and “manage your subscription” – all strategically designed for engagement.

The second email in the series ups the ante, with a reactivation discount offer, more direct messaging around what churned subscribers are missing, and a call to action that emphasizes urgency.

We love the differentiation in the CTA’s here. They all link to the same option – to resubscribe – but they’re strategically paired with an offer or routine-inspiring copy to earn that customer’s click!


Looking to boost your subscription retention rate, or provide a top-tier subscriber experience? Stay Ai’s out-of-the-box tools are designed to boost your subscription revenue, while delighting your VIP customers.

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Blog/10 Strategies to Boost ROI & Reduce Churn on BFCM 2023

10 Strategies to Boost ROI & Reduce Churn on BFCM 2023

BFCM is a critical period for subscription brands, as balancing acquisition and retention can be tricky.

From our work both at Lunar Solar Group managing hundreds of ecommerce brands, to our experience here at Stay Ai, our team pulled together our top tips & tricks for your BFCM strategy.

Let’s dig in to how you can best acquire, retain, and delight your subscribers during the most wonderful time of the year.

Getting Started: Review 2022 Data for BFCM 2023

💡 Pro Tipbefore you start implementing your 2023 strategy, take a look at last year’s available BFCM data. Here’s why:

– If your juicy intro offer led to high acquisition, but same-day or first-month cancellations skyrocketed, maybe the juice wasn’t worth the squeeze.

– If you saw particularly high churn among existing subscribers, that’s a sign that this year, you should invest more into subscriber retention.

BFCM 2023: Reduce Subscriber Churn

Churn risk is high during BFCM, with subscribers starting their holiday shopping and looking for deals. Let’s look at 3 ways to save your subscribers from BFCM churn.

Call Out Subscriber-Exclusive Discounts
Don’t let your current subscribers get salty about missing the deals you’re giving first-timers. Offer subscribers a similar (or higher!) discount on their next order or on add-on products as an extra incentive to stay.

OLIPOP

Last year, OLIPOP launched a banner ad in their customer portal highlighting an exclusive subscriber offer for Black Friday. After the promotional period, they saw an 8% reduction in churn, and a 13% increase in add-on revenue.

Launch Subscriber-Exclusive Offers
Through your customer portal, email, SMS, and website, promote subscriber-only exclusive offers. Limited edition products, BOGO deals, and add-on deals are especially effective. Be sure to tease these offers to your subscribers in advance to build excitement.

Super Coffee

Super Coffee launched a subscriber-exclusive Cyber Week Flash Sale in 2022. This deal allowed subscribers to add any two seasonal items to their cart for a BOGO deal.

Surely Wine

Surely Wine reserved their 2022 BFCM offers to subscribers only, leveraging the FOMO effect. From October through EOY, they saw 32% less churn. Even more awesome, their add-on revenue skyrocketed by 85% in November.

Offer Free Gifts with Purchase
BFCM is a perfect time to capitalize on freebies and surprises to boost subscriber engagement. Give subscribers a heads-up about their upcoming gift as an incentive to prevent churn.

BFCM 2023: Turning Shoppers Into New Subscribers

Highlight Special Intro Offers
If you know you’ve got a product customers love, a deeper discount on the first order can be a great way to boost subscriber count.

Beekeeper’s Naturals

Beekeeper’s Naturals sent a dedicated email highlighting their “best subscription deal of the year”, featuring 30% off new subscriptions and a free gift on the second order. During BFCM 2022, they saw 12% growth in first-time subscription revenue, as well as 53% growth in add-on revenue!

Build Your Messaging with Subscription in Mind
Start pushing subscription-related messaging across acquisition channels well in advance. Reinforce the value proposition(s) of your subscription program to shoppers via your website, social, email, and SMS. Additionally, if you offer products that show best results with consistent product use, reiterate that messaging and those benefits.

Entice Shoppers with Trial or Starter Kits
BFCM is a great time to launch special offers on pre-built bundles like starter or trial kits. Regardless of the season, these products often convert well for initial purchase, and with some workflow magic and/or dedicated email flows, can convert seamlessly into high-value subscriptions.

Tenzo

Tenzo offers Trial Kits year-round, and has set up a workflow in Stay to convert trial purchasers to subscribers down the line. They periodically highlight special offers on their trial kit, enabling customers to seamlessly test the product before falling in love.

Upsell One-Time Purchasers with 2+ Orders on Subscription:
This is an extremely valuable and easy-to-convert customer segment! Send a dedicated email flow or SMS message to customers who have purchased one or more products multiple times as one-time purchases, encouraging them to “upgrade” to subscription. Reinforce your subscription program benefits – especially that subscribe & save – and consider presenting a BFCM season specific intro offer for these subscribers. Free gifts with purchase, trial items, or bundle discounts are especially effective with this segment.

Add Winback Campaigns to Your BFCM Marketing Mix:
Offer prior subscribers a special discount to come back, a free gift with purchase, or a multi-month exclusive offer on subscriptions to encourage re-enrolling in your subscription program. If you have cancellation survey data to work off of, make sure to segment these customers meaningfully. For example, for your segment of customers to that cancelled to purchase in retail, highlight the value propositions of your digital subscription program to encourage them to buy online through 2024. Another example: for customers who had too much product, highlight how they can set up a subscription moving forward with their delivery cadence of choice.

Leverage Gifting to Boost AOV & Reach

Suggest Add-On Items as Gifts: Surface cool add-on items in your customer portal carousel, using your portal banner, or through email/SMS and nudge subscribers to purchase these items as gifts for others.

Highlight Prepaid, Fixed-Length Subscriptions: Fixed-length subscriptions are extremely popular gifts during the holidays! Consider sending a dedicated email campaign featuring “the gift that keeps on giving” – a subscription to a friend or family member’s favorite brand!

TLDR: The holiday season is a critical period for acquiring — and retaining — high value subscription customers. Ready to crush your Q4 with the only subscription tool powered by AI for maximum impact?

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Blog/17 RetentionEngine Examples to Slash Subscriber Churn

17 RetentionEngine Examples to Slash Subscriber Churn

No matter how compelling your subscription offer may be, you’ll always have some customers hitting the cancel button. That’s why Stay Ai’s RetentionEngFeature wpine, an AI-powered tool enabling personalized cancellation surveys and follow-up flows, can be such a valuable part of the subscription experience.

In another article, RetentionEngine founder Mat Moody shared his top tips for effective cancel surveys and flows. In this one, we’re showing how these top brands put those best practices to work. Let’s dig in.

Kettle & Fire

Kettle & Fire’s cancellation survey and follow-up treatments add an engaging splash of humor, adding a relatable, human touch — netting them an impressive 15% save rate.

Quick highlight: instead of just flagging “price” as the villain, they dive deeper. Splitting it into budgetary constraints and value perception helps them decode the root cause of cancellation intent.

The result? Smarter follow-ups and a better understanding of their customers.

They don’t stop with a great survey, though — their cancel treatments with attention-grabbing gifs are impossible to ignore.

This combined strategy minimizes immediate cancellations and the insight they need for future retention fire.

OLIPOP

Olipop’s next-level cancellation treatments are tailored specifically to each cancel reason, weaving in a generous 30% discount offer while educating the customer about their products or suggesting a flavor swap. Engaging, on-brand graphics make the offers pop for an impressive save rate of 24%. 

Goli

Goli personalizes their cancel surveys with subscribers’ names to emphasize a personal touch. Resulting follow-up treatments align with the brand’s visual identity and offer enticing discounts, landing the brand a save rate of 13.2%.

Lifeboost

Lifeboost is killing the retention game with a 38% save rate, showing how much they really get their customers. One example of what really works in their cancel flows: When subscribers indicate they’ve “switched to a different brand,” Lifeboost offers a discount alongside messaging that highlights their product’s value props.

V-Dog

Achieving a notable save rate of 20.2%, V-Dog’s cancel treatments are a genius combination of heartstrings and humor, minus the guilt trip (nobody likes that!). Their consistent branding throughout gives subscribers a familiar experience, complete with the playful pup graphics we all adore.

Obvi

Sporting an 11% save rate, Obvi’s cancel surveys and flows do a lot of work in just a little time. The cancel treatment below gives customers a sense of care and encouragement and offers some product education driving home the perks of staying consistent. The discount offer as a finishing touch gives subscribers a strong reason to stick around.

Harmless Harvest

Harmless Harvest’s cancel flows are a masterclass in humanizing the brand-customer convo, helping them achieve a whopping 20% save rate. Their follow-up in response to price objections is spot-on:

  • The simple, “We’d love to make this work for you,” adds a genuine touch. 
  • Odd-numbered discounts like that 14% offer tend to be more eye-catching than your standard 15%. It feels personal, making it even more compelling. 
  • And don’t forget the gratitude. That heartfelt “thanks” goes a long way toward keeping customers’ brand sentiment positive.

Thesis

Thesis, with a save rate of 11.6%, nails it with the personal touches in their cancel flows. The cancel survey page is personalized with the subscriber’s name and past order count. What could’ve been a mere transaction turns into a thoughtful interaction. Plus, you can tell they’ve been super thoughtful about their cancel reasons, showing their commitment to really understanding their customers.

MUD/WTR

MUD/WTR, crushing a 13% save rate, seamlessly merges customer insights and their signature brand flair. Their broad range of cancel reasons offers a vivid snapshot of changing customer needs. And the “cancellation confirmed” screen is a perfect mix of cheeky charm and essential info, preempting those common subscriber FAQs.

Schoolyard Snacks

This brand has an insane 22.2% save rate, so let’s look at what they’re doing right. Their cancel survey features a thoughtful selection of cancel reasons, paired with emojis for a dash of personality. Even better? Their tailored follow-up treatments. Customers don’t just feel heard — they get solutions that hit the mark.

Aura Bora

Aura Bora, rocking a 16% save rate, shows us the true meaning of adaptability in an omnichannel world. Subscribers prefer in-store? No problem! Instead of a hard sell, they offer to cover the cost of a can. It’s not just about the money. It’s a heartfelt nod to customer loyalty, no matter how they choose to buy.

Perfect Snacks

Perfect Snacks, with an incredible 17% save rate, shows just how effective simplicity can be. Perfect Snacks goes back to basics with just 4 follow-up treatments, leaning on clear, straightforward messages and simple but relevant solutions. A gentle nudge to brands: sometimes less is more.

Geologie

Geologie has a save rate of 16%, brilliantly leaning on product education to curb cancels. The brand anticipates some skin irritation concerns and addresses them head-on. They use a follow-up treatment to provide education that alleviates immediate fears and connects customers to further support through the “Chat With Us” CTA.

Psychedelic Water

Psychedelic Water, boasting a 14% save rate, gets personal with a video touch from their CTO, Matt Warren. Picked “It’s Too Expensive” as a cancel reason? Matt breaks down the WHY behind the pricing, giving subscribers a clear view of the value they get. Plus, they sweeten the deal with a 10% discount, fusing personal touch, product education, and tangible perk. 

Momofuku

Momofuku, scoring an 11.4% save rate, masterfully blends product education with a dash of FOMO to boost retention. The follow-up treatment for subscribers lured by initial discounts doesn’t just talk savings — it spotlights the added value of sticking around (with a side of emotion). It’s not just about a deal; it’s about everything you’ll miss if you bail. 

Dose

Contributing to Dose’ 10.5% save rate is their commitment to making sure every subscriber feels like a valued part of the community. One example: the Dose Grant Program. For customers finding their wallets stretched too thin, they’re not just throwing a one-time discount — they’re making a real commitment to accessibility. They’ve also got a “Rush My Order” option for speedy deliveries.

Atlas Coffee

With a 17% save rate, Atlas Coffee makes clever use of FOMO messaging around rewards points. Remarkably, even when this FOMO-driven treatment is presented without any associated discount, it still manages to retain 18% of those exposed to it. It’s clear: the allure of missing out on benefits is a potent tool for loyalty.

TLDR: You don’t need to let subscriber churn crush your revenue.

RetentionEngine is a powerful tool that’s here to help. Just click Get Started below to chat with our team of subscription & retention experts.

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Blog/5 Reasons Why Subscribers Churn (+ What to Do About It)

5 Reasons Why Subscribers Churn (+ What to Do About It)

Churn rate is an important metric to overall business health, but alone, it doesn’t give you much to action on. Digging deeper into your data highlights exactly where and when you’re losing your subscribers, so you can accurately develop prevention plans. 

Let’s dig into some of the top reasons subscribers give for leaving, and the best tactics for countering them.

  

The Top 5 Reasons Subscribers Churn – And How to Tackle Them

1. Price

Cost is typically the #1 selected reason for churn, but to really understand your customers, it’s critical to break down the price battle even further. A price objection could mean one of two things:

A) Your customer doesn’t think the product is worth the price
B) Your customer’s budget no longer covers their subscription.

Price Cancellations: What To Do About Them

If you’re confident in your pricing strategy, there’s not much you can do about your customers’ budgets. You might consider offering a range of pricing options and plans that cater to a broader audience… or you might need to adjust your targeting to draw the kinds of customers you want.

You do, however, have a little more flexibility on the perceived value. Three pro tips: 

A) Surprise subscribers with a free gift or special discount every now and then
B) Bake in some community elements or exclusive access/rewards for loyalty
C) Make sure you’re educating your consumers via email/SMS on things like your ingredients, your top-tier formulation, and/or whatever else causes your high-quality product to have a high-quality price.

And of course, don’t forget to regularly remind your subscribers exactly what value they’re getting from the product itself. Make sure those main value props are super clear on your email comms, in the customer portal, and on your product pages.

 

2. Too Much Product, or Lack of Need

If customers aren’t keeping up with their “new year, new me” supplement routine, or realize they’re collecting a stockpile of razor refills in the bathroom cabinet, it’s pretty likely that they’ll attempt to cancel.

“Too Much Product” Cancellations: What To Do About Them

There are a few potential reasons behind this issue, so you’ll have to get to the bottom of what’s causing it in your business, then choose the right action from there: 

A) Adjust your delivery cadence or amount of product per shipment. If a snack box is delivered monthly, but it typically takes 45 days to eat, that excess is going to stack up fast. Offer your customers more flexibility in their subscription cadences to best fit their consumption patterns. 
B) Build the subscriber journey with this challenge in mind, and proactively highlight product swap options, as well as Skip and Delay. Better to see a skip than a churn!

3. Product-Related Issues

If subscribers are leaving because of a negative experience with the product, that’s a strong signal to start actively seeking feedback to find the disconnect. 

This cancellation reason can indicate a number of things – a change in product quality, a change in customer preference, or general customer boredom. And if there’s a particular product that’s seeing higher churn early in the sub journey, that’s really important feedback. 

“Product-Related Issue” Cancellations: What To Do About Them

Understanding which products cause the most churn can help you get in front of it, by:

A) Adjusting the product itself, if there are quality, supply, or manufacturing issues
B) Offering a more customizable program so subscribers get what they want
C) Encouraging SKU swaps or alternative bundle customizations
D) Building exposure to other varieties/flavors/etc., into the experience, by including cross-sells in comms or providing free samples with an upcoming order

4. Poor Subscriber Experience

Frustrated subscribers churn. Top frustration culprits include issues logging in, inability to adjust what’s on subscription, and issues with changing subscription cadence/pausing a subscription. 

Customers want to be able to manage the details of their subscription programs without dialing up your CX team (and your CX folks want that, too!).

“Bad Experience” Cancellations: What To Do About Them

You need a customer portal that makes everything super easy for them, so they can feel like they’re in the driver’s seat with options to skip or delay shipments, swap items, and more.

Of course, there’s no guarantee that they’ll never need support — so when they do, make sure you can deliver a prompt and helpful response. Inadequate or slow support can frustrate subscribers when they encounter issues or have questions.

5. Competitive Options

One of the coolest things about ecomm right now is that we all have access to so many different kinds of products — but if you’re in the business, that also means more competition. 

If you see customers drawn away by your competitors, it could be the messaging or value props, an indication of changing taste or sentiment… or maybe they just want to try something new.

“I Bought From Someone Else” Cancellations: What To Do About Them

Keeping your customers out of your competitor’s crosshairs is a tricky business — if it’s even possible. The bottom line for trying to keep them? You have to make these folks feel special. Some pro tips here:

A) Offer some kind of loyalty or rewards program to long-time customers
B) Create a sense of community and exclusivity with early access, special offers, etc.
C) Make sure to keep those Skip, Delay, and Swap options front and center so they remember they don’t have to outright cancel just yet.

Know Why Your Customers Churn, So You Can Build the Right Retention Strategy

Once you know why your subscribers are churning, you can tailor your retention strategies toward addressing the most critical issues. Being proactive about this — by implementing cancellation surveys and regularly analyzing the data (that part is important!) — can have a massive impact on your business over time.

How Stay Ai’s RetentionEngine Can Help Reduce Subscriber Churn

RetentionEngine makes it super simple to build a dynamic, no-code cancel flow to capture cancellation reasons from churning subscribers. Then, it helps you retain them with personalized treatments that can even include video or, later, reactivate former subscribers.

Plus, you get powerful churn analytics that help you keep track of cancellation reasons over time, identify trends, and hone your strategies to deflect cancellations. 

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Blog/7 Tips for Effective Cancel Surveys and Flows

7 Tips for Effective Cancel Surveys and Flows

One of Stay Ai’s most valuable benefits is the way it enables brands to proactively enhance their subscriber experience with things like discounts, gifts with purchase, exclusive offers, etc. But the fact is, you’re always going to have customers who hit the cancel button. 

That’s why your cancellation survey and subsequent flow are two of your most important retention tools. You don’t have to just sit back and watch them go. 

That said, we see a lot of brands still making this mistake: creating their cancel flow and then forgetting about it for the next year. 

Our rule of thumb is that, with the right flow, you should save at least 20% of the people who go through it. If you’re not, you probably need to optimize — or you’ll be leaving money on the table. 

Let’s dig into seven helpful tips for optimizing your cancellation surveys and flows.

Cancel Surveys

To clean up the holes in your subscription program, you have to know why your customers are canceling, and how those reasons are trending over time. That’s where the cancellation survey comes in.

1. Optimize Cancellation Reasons Over Time

Begin with a core set of reasons for cancellation then, based on the data, break them down further — only if necessary. 

For example, let’s say one of your cancellation reasons is “Price.” That could be an issue on the customer side (“I can’t afford this right now.”) or it could be a brand/value issue (“I don’t believe this is worth the price.”) 

If the number of people selecting this as a cancel reason is relatively low, you might not need to break it down further. But if it’s a large proportion of your answers, it could be valuable to find out if it’s their budget or their perception of value that’s causing the real pain.

2. Address the “Other” Category

You’ll probably always need “other” as a category, but if it’s being selected more than 5% of the time, that signals a bigger problem. It means you have customers leaving and you don’t know why. 

If you encounter this, don’t worry — there are practical steps you can take to address it. 

First, gather input from the “Other” comment field and examine responses for recurring patterns or themes. This will provide valuable insights into the areas where customers’ needs might not align with the available response options. After that, temporarily disable the “Other” option, pushing customers to select the next most relevant response from the provided choices.

3. Avoid Recency and Primacy Bias

To ensure unbiased data collection, you need to randomize the order of reasons presented in your cancelation surveys. Why? Recency and primacy bias.

Primacy bias refers to the likelihood that you’ll remember the first items in a list better than the ones in the middle.

Recency bias refers to a greater ability to remember more recent information better than older information.

These biases are why, if you leave all your cancel reasons in the same order, you’ll likely see inflated numbers on the top and bottom reasons. Randomizing the order removes that bias so you get more accurate data.

Cancel Flows

The two biggest things that make a cancel flow effective are: personalization and personality. Customers respond to feeling as if something is just for them, coming directly from a real human.

1. Acknowledge the Customer’s Patronage

Expressing gratitude for a customer’s loyalty and acknowledging their specific purchase history helps create a personalized connection. The keyword here is “personalized”: customers want to feel like the brand knows and values them.


For example, offering a discount while highlighting their length of subscription can make the customer feel valued. Or if you’re responding to a product issue, you can acknowledge the product they currently subscribe to and offer them an alternative product they might like more.

2. Use Video Treatments

The save rate on video messages is 40%+, making it one of the most effective save tactics. Why? It’s personalization, again.

Incorporating video content into cancellation flows can greatly enhance the personalization aspect. By featuring a real person instead of a faceless brand, businesses can establish a human connection and address customer concerns directly.

3. Offer Irregular-Number Discounts

This one frequently surprises people, but we’ve seen it work time and time again. Irregular discounts (e.g., 19% or 22% off) can grab customers’ attention and create a sense of personalization. These offers appear less automated and more tailored to the customer’s unique situation.

4. Incorporate Product Education

If a cancellation reason pertains to product dissatisfaction, you can provide additional information to educate them. 

For example, let’s say you have a supplement brand and a customer cancels after 60 days because they don’t think it’s working. You could counter by educating them that subscribers typically start seeing results after 90 days. 

Or, if you’re selling a beverage or food item and a customer cancels because they don’t like the flavor, make sure they know how easy it is to try a different one — or even a whole new product.

Leverage Cancel Surveys and Flows to Keep More Customers, Longer

Don’t fall into the trap of creating your cancel flows only to neglect them for extended periods of time. That approach only undermines your potential to save customers from churning, and misses out on opportunities to improve the overall user experience. Effective cancel flows and follow-ups should be dynamic and continuously evolving to meet customer needs.

Stay Ai’s RetentionEngine makes this process near-effortless, eliminating the need for additional work from IT or developers. Find out how Stay Ai can enable your brand to take charge of its cancellation flow and make sure it remains an effective retention strategy for your brand.

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Blog/The Truth Behind Subscriber Churn: 4 Data Points You Need to Know

The Truth Behind Subscriber Churn: 4 Data Points You Need to Know

If your business strategy hinges on the subscription model, churn is always going to be a big concern. You need the right retention strategy — and you can get there… but not without really understanding and analyzing your existing churn. 

Let’s look at some of the most important metrics you’ll need.

1. Churn by Cohort

If you’re only measuring churn by calendar month — 15% in July, 14.5% in August, and so on — you’re missing another valuable set of data points: 

– The length of time your subscribers stick around
– Which orders they’re most likely to cancel
– Churn rate by number of shipments
– How many subscribers cancel after the first order but before the first recurring shipment

Bottom line: you need to identify the key drop-off points. Those will be pretty unique to every brand, but after working with hundreds of of them, we’ve noticed some recurring behavior patterns that can be helpful to understand. 

Brands will typically have two distinct points in the subscriber lifecycle that are especially important as you optimize your program: the churn cliff, and the churn plateau. 

Churn Cliff and Churn Plateau

The churn cliff is your steepest drop-off point. We see nearly across the board that the churn cliff happens early in the subscription lifecycle: typically between the initial order and the first recurring shipment. 

The churn plateau is the point in the subscriber lifecycle that churn — you guessed it — plateaus. After that milestone, the odds of churn decrease significantly. 

So essentially, we can think about the subscription lifecycle as a funnel to push subscribers from the first order, through an obstacle course, to the churn plateau and beyond.

2. Churn Rate by Product/SKU

You’ll also want to slice and dice your churn data by product. 

Let’s say you run the subscription program for a wellness brand, and your overall churn rate is 15%. What that doesn’t tell you? Subscribers to Product A might be churning at a rate of 7%, while Product B’s churn rate is much higher.  

This is important to know because, for one thing, it can identify issues with product quality, shipping, manufacturing, or a whole host of other things.

But this data can also surface patterns in preference. 

To build on the previous example, imagine your drink mix powder comes in two different flavors: mango and chocolate. If you see a much higher churn rate on the mango flavor, you might want to try to get the chocolate alternative in front of more people, sooner.

3. Churn by Cancellation Reason

It’s not enough to know “how many.” You need to know why.

This is how you’ll know if too many of your customers are leaving because of price, or if there are specific products in your catalog that typically see more churn. Then you can tailor the subscriber experience accordingly.

Keeping an eye on cancellation reasons is also another way to help you identify product issues.  For example, you might discover a production issue if you see a huge churn spike on a particular product at a particular time. 

4. Customer Lifetime Value

You pay so much to acquire your customers. You have to understand how valuable they really are. Your customer lifetime value needs to be high enough for you to make a significant return on your investment. If it’s not, you may need to restructure your subscription program or tweak some other pieces of your strategy.

Take Action on Data-Driven Insights to Keep Subscribers Longer

Leverage your churn data to identify patterns, understand the underlying reasons for customer behavior, and personalize the user experience accordingly, so you’re not just responding to churn — you’re addressing it proactively. 

How Stay Ai Helps Brands Easily Understand Their Churn

Stay Ai can deliver a wealth of insights into your subscription business, helping you improve your program and reduce churn.

Detailed Customer Insights:

Understand your subscribers’ behavior, including purchase history, product preferences, and engagement with the customer portal. You can use this information to identify high-value customers and proactively prevent churn

Cancellation Reasons:

Hear directly from your customers why they’re canceling their subscription, so you can optimize your program based on trends or tailor follow-ups and winbacks based on their reasons.

Churn Forecasts:

Stop spending so much time pouring through your data when with Stay you can easily see which customer segments are at risk, so you can take proactive actions to improve your program.

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Blog/4 Strategies for Optimizing Your Subscription Experience to Cut Churn (+ Examples From Top Brands)

4 Strategies for Optimizing Your Subscription Experience to Cut Churn (+ Examples From Top Brands)

Subscriber churn is a make-or-break factor that directly influences the financial health and growth of your business. 

Launching a subscription program is just the first step. To conquer churn and unlock your full revenue potential, you need constant focus on the end-to-end subscriber experience. 

In this article we’ll dig into four strategies we’ve seen have wide success in helping brands optimize their experience.

Build an Engaging Onboarding Sequence

It can be challenging to keep subscribers engaged and subscribed, especially in the early stages of their membership, and brands are often hesitant to try. They might think that, by not communicating with subscribers, they can forget about their subscription and not cancel. 

Truth is, research shows that educating customers on the benefits of their subscription and how to navigate and customize it can significantly reduce churn. So set the right foundation with new customers right away:

– Provide clear instructions
– Educate on the benefits of your subscription offering
– Help them understand how to get the most value out of their subscription

Offer Strategically Timed Incentives and Upgrades

Stage-Based Loyalty Rewards

Automate thank-you rewards for your customers at the cadence of your choice. Free stuff is always great, but discounts also go a long way. These are especially effective after 2 orders, 5 orders, and 1 year on subscription. 

Funk It Wellness uses Stay Ai’s ExperienceEngine to test offering free gifts with orders.

Free Gifts with Purchase

If you’re noticing that customers seem to cancel their subscription at a certain cadence — say, after 2 orders — that’s the perfect time to add in a free gift with purchase. 

For the 3rd order, reward them for staying on sub by adding in free testers, a free product, or some merch. They’ll feel rewarded, and you’ll keep them on sub for longer. 

Being able to offer free gifts to your subscribers is a great feature, and Obvi did the testing to know how those free gifts impact their subscription numbers.

Keep Subscribers Engaged Over Time

Personalize Customer Portal Upsells and Cross-sells

Personalize subscriber offers with tailored recommendations based on prior purchases. Use the real estate on your customer portal to call out new product drops your customer may like, or automate exclusive offers via email for new products to upsell or cross-sell. 

Begin Health offers customers recommended upsells through Stay’s Customer Portal.

Implement Automated Order Reminders and Skip/Delay Emails

This one goes out to the customers who “forgot” they were on subscription. Implement automated email/SMS messages or portal notifications to remind customers of an upcoming order before their card is charged. You can also use these messages to encourage potential churners to skip a shipment or pause their subscription, rather than slamming the cancel button. 

Offer Alternatives to Cancellation

When you find a pattern to understand why customers typically cancel their subscriptions, one solution is to set up customized cancel flows to get them to stay. Giving subscribers more control and flexibility over their subscription can help retain them by aligning with their individual preferences and circumstances.

Ever and Ever uses Stay Ai’s RetentionEngine, which optimizes user actions for the most desirable business outcome.

– When someone goes to cancel their order, they first see a screen with possible alternatives.
– When someone goes to skip, we ask them whether they’d like to gift it to someone.
– When someone goes to pause, we ask them whether they’d like to just skip this next shipment.

Ever & Ever is seeing consistent redemptions on these alternate offers, allowing them to minimize monthly churn and reduce cancellations and skips.

Personalize Your Cancellation Treatments and Winback Messaging

The two biggest things that make a cancel flow effective? Personalization and personality. Customers respond to feeling as if something is just for them, coming directly from a real human.

Thesis uses Stay Ai’s RetentionEngine to personalize cancellation flows, and prescribe personalized winbacks.

Optimize Your Subscription Experience to Cut Churn with Stay Ai

Through the use of data-driven strategies and optimization tools, businesses like Obvi, Grinds, and Ever & Ever have successfully reduced churn and increased subscriber retention. By continuously testing and iterating on the subscriber experience, these companies have not only minimized monthly churn but also unlocked higher lifetime value from customers.

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Blog/Making Data-Driven Decisions to Reduce Subscriber Churn

Making Data-Driven Decisions to Reduce Subscriber Churn

If your business strategy hinges on the subscription model, you have to work consistently to minimize churn’s impact to your bottom line. You can do that by leveraging data and analytics to pinpoint issues, derive insights, and refine the user experience for your subscribers.

Let’s look at an example. But first, let’s look at all the metrics you might make use of as you start to dig into the details of your churn.

This metric involves breaking your customers down into cohorts based on any number of factors, so you can identify the patterns and trends that might not be visible when looking at your customer or subscriber base as a whole.

Look at the churn rate for each cohort to help you identify specific issues impacting different groups. But don’t look for all bad news, either — this can also give you insight into how to make them stay.

Churn rate by product/SKU

One way you’ll want to slice and dice your churn data is by product. Let’s say you run the subscription program for a wellness brand, and your overall churn rate is 15%. 

What that doesn’t tell you? Subscribers to Product A might be churning at a rate of 7%, while Product B’s churn rate is much higher.  

This is important to know because, for one thing, it can identify product quality issues. If you see churn rates spike on one particular product, you can identify potential shipping, manufacturing, or a whole host of other issues.

But this data can also surface patterns in preference. 

To build on the previous example, imagine your drink mix powder comes in two different flavors: mango and chocolate. If you see a much higher churn rate on the mango flavor, you might want to try to get the chocolate alternative in front of more people, sooner. (We’ll cover that more later.) 

Churn by cohort

If you’re only measuring churn by calendar month — 15% in July, 14.5% in August, and so on — you’re missing another valuable set of data points: the length of time your subscribers stick around, and on which orders they’re most likely to churn. 

You need to know your churn rate by number of shipments. How many subscribers cancel after their first order but before their first recurring shipment? Where are other key drop-off points? 

After working with hundreds of subscription brands, we’ve noticed some recurring behavior patterns that can be helpful to understand. 

Brands will typically have two distinct points in the subscriber lifecycle that are especially important as you optimize your program: the churn cliff, and the churn plateau. 

The churn cliff is your steepest drop-off point. We see nearly across the board that the churn cliff happens early in the subscription lifecycle: typically between the initial order and the first recurring shipment.

The churn plateau is the point in the subscriber lifecycle that churn — you guessed it — plateaus. After that milestone, the odds of churn decrease significantly. 

Think about the subscription lifecycle as a funnel to push subscribers from the first order, through an obstacle course to the churn plateau.

How Stay Ai Helps Brands Easily Understand Their Churn

Stay Ai’s powerful analytics can deliver a wealth of insights into your subscription business, helping you improve your program and reduce churn: 

Detailed customer insights: Understand your subscribers’ behavior, including purchase history, product preferences, and engagement with the customer portal. You can use this information to identify high-value customers and proactively prevent churn.

Cancel reasons: Hear directly from your customers why they’re canceling their subscription, so you can optimize your program based on trends or tailor follow-ups and winbacks based on their reasons.

Churn forecasts: Stop spending so much time pouring through your data when with Stay you can easily see which customer segments are at risk, so you can take proactive actions to improve your program.

Use Data-Driven Insights to Optimize Your Program and Keep Subscribers Longer

In today’s competitive and fluctuating market, it’s rarely if ever profitable to focus on customer or subscriber acquisition alone. You need retention — and you can get there, with a deep understanding of your subscriber churn. 

Leverage your churn data to identify patterns, understand the underlying reasons for customer behavior, and personalize the user experience accordingly, so you’re not just responding to churn — you’re addressing it proactively. 

Embrace the power of data, gain invaluable insights, and navigate your business towards growth and profitability.

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