We live in an online world and in it, almost every software company uses active communication with their customers. This gives them many opportunities to get to know their customers and find out what they expect from their products. In other words, every online business should be customer-centric, especially if it’s niche. But what if the activation strategies you use are making you lose customers? How do you know which activation strategies are better for your business?
I’ve always wanted you to have more than one choice of strategy for license activation in Keyzy. Now online, semi-online and/or offline activations are ready for your use. To make this available to you, we prepared a client library which supports different activation strategies.
Let’s have a look at our selling cycle first.
The Selling Cycle
After you sell a product to a customer, you send a brandnew serial number to them and they use this number to activate their license. But which strategy should you choose to activate the license for your software? To answer this question, you need to know your industry well and if you don’t have enough information about it, you need to do some research. We’ll get to that later. First, let’s have a look at what strategies we have on the table.
We’ll have a quick look at three activation strategies, technically. Online activation, semi-online activation and offline activation.
Strategy #1: Online Activation
The logic is basic and straightforward. Your software sends queries to the activation server and gets the responses to decide if the license is valid or not. In more specific terms, you can use some timing techniques to query the server. For example, you’re free to check the license on the server daily, hourly or every 5 minutes. You may also check the server many times in each and every run of your software.
Strategy #2: Semi-online Activation
If you like to check the license on the server only at specific times, you may use the semi-online strategy. In the first run of your product, you have to activate it online. Later you can choose to query the server rarely, for example monthly. You just need to inform your customer that your software will need an internet connection monthly. The rest will continue in the offline part. License information should be kept on the device and regularly checked from there instead of the server.
Strategy #3: Offline Activation
If your software needs to run without online connection, you can follow the offline activation strategy. The steps are as follows:
- Keyzy prepares an encrypted file on the server for your customer only
- Your customer downloads that license file
- Customer shows it to your product
- Your product decrypts the file and queries the file to see if the license is valid or not
Yeah, in each of these strategies there are many tasks to do. Fortunately, Keyzy has the C++ client library that covers all of them for you. You just need to add it to your project and use the simple interface.
Which Strategy to Use
Enough with technicality. Let’s talk about how to choose one of these strategies. Yes, it’s not easy. If you choose the wrong one, you may lose customers. In that case, what should you do to find out which strategy is better for your business? Before deciding that, you need to know your industry well. With industry I mean, your customers and your prospects.
#1 Search, Search and (once more) Search
You can find lots of information on your industry and your customers’ behavior on the net. For this, you might check some forums or Quora topics. You’re not limited with your own industry, though. You can find similar industries and get information from there, too. You’re free to search if there is a survey on this subject.
#2 Social Media
Social media can also be a great help. Influencers are very important when it comes to sharing information. What’s more, it’s always beneficial to talk with them. This way, you can find out what they want to do, which strategy they use and which strategy feels better for them.
Yes, you can conduct polls 🙂 I’ve already conducted two polls in the audio industry. One of them was carried out through Kvr Audio and the other one through Gearslutz. People do like polls and they don’t simply mark the given options, they give you feedback too. Actually, it’s with these small polls that I’ve come to realize that we can add the semi-online strategy to Keyzy.
#4 Check With Your Customers
You’re free to ask your question to your customers directly and send them a survey link. There is nothing wrong with communicating directly with them. Just send out emails (personalization is very important). If you are already in communication with your customers, you can ask your question as part of it. If you have a support ticket, it’s even easier for you.
You need to enable your product to be easily activated using short steps with the right strategy. In the customer-centric world, you always need to gather data. Find out about your customers’ environment information, choose the right activation strategy for your products and achieve a bigger success