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Sales Operations4 min read

What's different about revenue operations in subscription businesses?

Revenue operations for subscriptions

A cornerstone in business management

Revenue operations (RevOps) hold a pivotal role in any business, but especially in subscription businesses that rely on connectivity across the whole customer experience on a repeated cycle. This is distinct from the one-off sales model of a more traditional organisation. 

In this article, we examine what's required for subscription businesses to employ the right technology for subscription revenue operations, creating strategies, connecting teams, and collecting data to optimize performance.

Uniting teams involved in the customer journey to boost revenue, revenue operations embody best practice in subscription business management. To excel, they need the right system to support their goals and daily tasks.


How does recurring revenue impact RevOps functionality?

The complexities in subscription processes

The recurring nature of processes and ongoing customer relationships are a hallmark of subscription businesses. Not only is this a characteristic however, but a key driver in the differentiation of how companies relate to customers from direct communications to systems operations, self-service, invoicing, billing, failed payment reminders and even cancellation flows.

Achieving that ongoing relationship through all touch points in the customer journey requires much more sophisticated processes than one-off sales. Retaining the relationship is a constant process, but equally if something goes wrong then the implications are that more complex. For example, if a customer payment fails in a traditional business, then you only need to implement dunning retries once. However, in a subscription business repeatedly failed payments have a significant knock-on effect, especially if they keep happening.

Furthermore, the ongoing nature of subscription businesses means there's more options and flexibility to implement diversity in the product range and pricing options through different usage plans and customer segmentation. There's a wealth of things you may want to do to maximise revenue, and a wealth of things that you can do—as long as you have the right system and capabilities to make it happen.

What do teams need to meet business and customer needs in a subscription business?

Technologies that set subscription RevOps apart

Perhaps the greatest differentiator between the RevOps capabilities required in subscription businesses distinct from those in one-off sales, is connectivity between systems and processes.

In one-off sales, teams can operate and processes can be automated in separate systems, regularly synced to keep things up to date. If fees are only required once and they fail on the first try, then it's easy to see and track. However, if they fail repeatedly then it can become extremely challenging to stay on top of without a connected system in place. 

Subscriptions also operate around renewals, which is complicated in itself. For example, if a customer wants to change their plan with particular specifications before their renewal date, it’s not always easy for the RevOps team to enable that and keep track of what’s happening. Where systems are not purpose designed for subscription tasks, that level of personalisation often involves expensive customisation, which requires the input of tech teams (who are not always readily available) as well as significant development time. It can easily result in spending revenue before it's earned in order to cater to specific needs.

If that type of customer need was a one off, then that would be one thing. However, as businesses grow, individual requests and more specific requirements will happen all the time, and all at the same time. Teams need tightly connected, automated and easily adaptable components to stay on top of every aspect of the customer behaviour, experience and product purchase.

What kind of technology does the subscription RevOps team need?

Essential components for better business outcomes

All of this sounds quite overwhelming, and indeed the systems required to implement such nuanced details at pace and at scale are complex. However, done well, such complexities can be hidden behind a user experience that's extremely easy to operate, both for internal business users and customers.

What you need is technology with pre-built as well as standalone solutions that are not an extension of, or customised from, the billing tool. You need a complete, event-driven business system that collects the right data, offers a holistic view of customer behaviour and that enables configuration easily, without the need for expensive, time consuming system customisations. That's what we deliver with keylight.

How does keylight support the RevOps team?

Streamlined commerce, billing, and financial processes

keylight has been purpose-designed with the subscription business user experience in mind, troubleshooting the traditional challenges of users, including the RevOps team to maximise the short-, medium-, and long-term success of the business as a whole.

It’s designed not as a billing tool, but as a complete end-to-end business system with pre-built applications. As a result, it enables a powerful combination of fully configurable customer journeys, inbuilt pricing logic for different customer segments and sophisticated guided-selling capabilities to empower sales and support teams.

The result is an easy-to-use platform that helps to boost revenue, successfully implement and improve RevOps strategies and save valuable time, giving customers the best solutions without upfront investment for custom development.

In short, keylight delivers the best technology in the market, removing frustrating barriers for the RevOps team and enabling them to get on with what they do best instead of wasting time on administrative processes and technological difficulty.