Zuora is a cloud-based subscription management system that spans across commerce, billing, and finance. With Z-Business, strategies implemented by the Sales and Marketing department don’t negatively impact activities in other departments, specifically Billing and Finance, because all facets of the subscription management lifecycle stay in sync.
Some of Zuora’s modules include Z-Commerce, Z-Billing, Z-Finance, Zuora for Salesforce and its support system.
Zuora is a relationship business management solution that takes care of the entire subscription management lifecycle, from sales and marketing initiatives to billing and finance. Zuora’s unified user interface allows organizations to easily manage complicated billing and finance operations despite rapidly changing pricing strategies to increase the company’s customer base.
Zuora gives businesses the freedom to create unique billing cycles, and with its ready-made integration with Salesforce.com, it has become the billing platform of choice for many subscription organizations.
Z-Commerce is a Zuora application that covers product marketing and sales. Most legacy billing and financial systems push back on creative discounts, primarily because any change in subscription pricing can severely impact the way billing and finance officers do their jobs. If the company plans to expand its operations overseas, multicurrency pricing and global taxation become additional challenges. With Z-Commerce, pricing and packaging iterations are quick (and don’t require IT), so you can tailor your offerings to customers.
Z-Commerce also affords the sales and marketing department the freedom to get creative with pricing packaging (one-time charges, recurring charges, pay as you go, overage pricing, discounts, promos and free trials, among others) to attract new customers, with the finance and billing departments not needing a considerable amount of time to revisit their operational strategies to keep up with the pricing changes. This is because all features of the Z-Business system remain in sync. Also, with Z-Commerce, engagement with customers can be done via the web, a mobile device, a sales rep, or all of the above.
An offering within Z-Commerce is Zuora for Salesforce, which includes functionality that brings all aspects of the subscription commerce lifecycle to Salesforce.com. Zuora for Salesforce allows the sales team to use the Zuora product catalog to generate quotes in Salesforce, make processing upgrades, downgrades and renewals while staying in sync with Z-Finance and Z-Billing.
With Zuora for Salesforce, the account and sales management departments have real-time subscriber information at their fingertips, including all subscription transactions and impacted metrics.
Z-Billing gives billing professionals a centralized hub to manage all accounts receivable operations, which can include adjustments, refunds and credits. It is also where they can easily schedule payment and billing activities, and automatically send customers email notifications on events like payment collection failures, credit card expiration, past due invoices, renewal reminders, and the like.
Z-Billing identifies timing, proration, frequency, revenue and taxation rules linked to any charges, while ensuring that key finance and billing operations run as expected no matter how innovative the product marketing team gets with pricing. Branded invoice templates can be created, charges for multiple customers can be consolidated in a single invoice, and payments can be accepted via ACH (Automated Clearing House), direct debit, bank transfers, and checks. And regardless of the company’s growth strategies, Z-Billing ensures you have the data you need to see how much was billed and collected, and how much is still outstanding.
Aside from a clear insight into the health of the business through critical subscription metrics, Z-Finance streamlines and accelerates accounting and revenue close processes so that finance managers no longer drown in spreadsheets to manage revenue recognition, take weeks to close books, or implement new finance guidelines to understand how the business is faring.
Z-Finance makes finance activities tied to business expansion easier to accomplish, whether that’s expanding into new territories or taking the company public. Revenue schedules are automatically generated for subscription charges. Subscription metrics can be freely analyzed, like churn, MRR (monthly recurring revenue) and TCV (total contract value).
Zuora’s global support system employs varied ways to assist its customers. Aside from Zuora University, a self-help knowledge base, it offers a community forum that’s subdivided into location-based user groups, and a site section containing partner announcements and implementation best practices.
With just a click, you can already submit an assistance request and check the status of your existing requests. You can also get in touch with Zuora support via phone, chat and email.
Zuora is built to readily integrate with various applications like Salesforce for CRM; NetSuite, QuickBooks, and Workday for accounting; GoodData, Scout Analytics and SaaSOptics for analytics; Chase Paymentech, CyberSource and Moneris for payment administration; and Vertex and Avalara for tax management. For other integrations, Zuora also provides both SOAP and REST APIs.
Zuora’s pricing scheme depends on your company’s size and scale, and offers multiple subscription packages. After the free trial, you have the option to choose a Growth, Enterprise, or Nine package.
Zuora is a relationship business management system that has been designed for all types of subscription groups: freelancers, small businesses, mid-sized and large enterprises, even nonprofits and public organizations. The software caters to the needs of CEOs and departments like Marketing, Operations, Finance, and IT. It covers a vast spectrum of industries such as SaaS, cloud, communications, media, healthcare, education, among others.
Zuora’s pool of more than 500 customers includes companies like Dell, HP, Zendesk, SendGrid, Zillow, DocuSign and Marketo.Read the full GetApp Analysis