Agility and the capacity for lightning-speed innovation are critical in every industry as the continued digital transformation means companies—and their customers—are finding new opportunities and new competition in equal measure. Now more than ever, businesses need consistent access to relevant, accurate usage and billing data to help spot trends, highlight customer preferences, and guide the decisions that will keep them at the top of their markets. “Standard” reporting times are no longer fast enough, and companies need access to real-time billing data to succeed.

The 4-1-1 on Real-Time Data

What kind of data are we talking about, exactly? Billing data is collected with each transaction and through every step of the quote-to-cash process. If it's real-time data, it's accessible to the finance and accounting teams—and sometimes even to the customers—immediately. Here are a few examples of what real-time billing data might tell us:

  • How much of a specific product has been purchased this month?
  • How much have customers spent on particular services this quarter?
  • Are customers purchasing product A alongside any specific products or services, and does this indicate opportunities to bundle those offerings?
  • How often are customers reloading their prepaid, stored-value accounts?
  • For customers, did my subscription renew automatically when it was supposed to?
  • Is our subscriber churn rate increasing or decreasing?

When the finance team and other decision-makers can see this data at a glance (as opposed to waiting for monthly or quarterly summaries to become available), they can quickly spot trends in how their products and services are performing and how customers are engaging with their offerings. This process enables more accurate forecasting and faster responses to customer and market changes.

Benefits of Real-Time Data in Quote-to-Cash Process

Real-time data benefits for a business and its customers are endless. Here are our top 5:

  1. Stronger Forecasting: When you know exactly how customers are behaving now, it's easier to understand how your business is performing against revenue goals and to predict how those customers will behave in the future. Real-time data empowers businesses to track progress, revise forecasting, and adjust strategies as needed for long-term and short-term revenue success.
  2. Granular Performance Insight: Real-time billing data empowers businesses to understand what’s happening and why. When you see a pattern in usage or engagement (or disengagement), you can dig into internal or external factors that might contribute to those patterns and make changes as necessary from the source rather than just targeting the symptoms.
  3. Instant Customer Access: Though you may not realize it right away, billing is a key part of the customer experience. And when customers can check on their orders, usage rates, and upcoming or paid invoices at any given moment, this minimizes surprises and offers customers a much-valued agency in managing their accounts.
  4. Higher Billing Accuracy: When billing data and insights are available in real-time, the finance team can catch and correct any errors before they snowball into major issues with invoicing or revenue reporting.
  5. Enhanced Fraud Detection: This crystal clear transparency means any fraud- or security-based irregularities can be identified and shut down much more quickly than they might otherwise be.

Accessing Real-Time Billing Data

The first step to getting access to real-time billing data is to let go of outdated or legacy billing systems that require manual intervention, slow the flow of information, and yield less-than-reliable results. All the time spent on these systems waiting for insights, unwinding mistakes, and manually moving workflows forward jeopardizes customer experience, new growth opportunities, and the ability to stay ahead of trends.

Instead, companies that want to capture the advantages and agility that come from access to real-time billing data need to embrace systems that enable two key capabilities:

  1. Automation eliminates the need for manual intervention in almost every aspect of revenue operations. This enables real-time data availability and heightened transparency, which means the resources no longer dedicated to mundane billing tasks can be reinvested into higher-level business initiatives.
  1. Integration is key to ensuring all the systems and processes that underpin your business and affect billing—CRMs, ERPs, and others—connect frictionlessly with one another, eliminating data gaps and redundancies and operating as one seamless system.

Billing platforms that offer both automation and integration give companies access to the real-time data they need to respond quickly to market and consumer preferences changes, empowering them to grow their market share, build revenue, and turn one-time buyers into lifelong customers and evangelists.

Real-Time Billing Data with Gotransverse

Access to real-time billing data improves analytics. The Gotransverse platform is built to offer both automation and integration, giving users more accurate forecasting, granular performance insight, consumption analyses, customer churn statistics, and other key metrics to tell you how your business is doing. What’s more, our Premier Data Access offerings provide direct access to usage, billing, and receivables data that can be used with your preferred reporting solution, helping you visualize and share the data that drives your business and to combine data sets for more holistic data analytics.

To learn more, dive deep into Premier Data Access, take a virtual tour of the Gotransverse Platform, and request a complimentary demo from one of our experts, who will be happy to show you how Gotransverse helps our customers use real-time billing data to meet and exceed every billing goal.

Gotransverse’s “Don’t Worry, Bill Happy” series is a “back to basics” look at foundational components of modern billing systems and processes and how the Gotransverse platform makes even the most complex billing needs easy.