Landing new clients is exciting. It’s like a rush — you see your profit margin increase, and your business scaling right in front of your eyes. Your business can’t really scale, however, unless you’re able to keep your clients in addition to landing new ones.
Repeat customers are essential for retention rates and long term success. It’s also worth pointing out that it’s much cheaper and easier to keep your customers on than it is to acquire new ones. And when we say cheaper, we mean it; it’s about 5x more expensive to acquire a new customer than it is to keep an existing one.
In this post, we’re going to go over four proven ways to increase your repeat customer base long-term.
1. Provide Stellar Customer Service
Customer service is the key to customer retention. There’s a good chance, after all, that many of your competitors have similar products, maybe even at similar price points and features. Customer service can be the differentiator that sets you apart.
Customers are willing to be loyal to brands that prove they’ll be loyal to their customers. Providing lightning-fast responses across all platforms is essential, and you want to treat each customer interaction like it could make or break your business. Offer personalized solutions where possible, and really listen to each customer concern or complaint.
This is what customers are now expecting, and if you deliver, you’ll keep the customers. If you don’t, they’ll find someone who will.
2. Set Up Personalized Marketing
Personalized marketing is the best way to quickly gain repeat sales from established customers. You already know what their relationship with your business is, what they’ve purchased in the past, and even potentially how they’re using your product or service. Use that knowledge, technology, and a little automation to create personalized recommendations.
Examples of this include:
- Feeds of “personalized” recommendations based on what they’re currently viewing or their past purchases. This can be displayed on your site and on product pages to increase add-ons or additional purchases.
- Automated retargeting campaigns, including Facebook Dynamic Ads, which show users ads featuring products or services they’ve recently been viewing or ads that complement what they’ve purchased in the past.
- Triggered autoresponder email campaigns that are delivered based on audience segmentation. If you have multiple services, send updates to clients only about the services they use. If you’re selling clothing, for example, you could send emails featuring petite items to women who have purchased those styles in the past. You’ll see better results and it will bring people back to the site because the content is directly relevant to them and their needs.
3. Ask for Feedback
Customer feedback isn’t just helpful when you’re shopping online and scrolling through reviews, it can also be a game-changing tool for you as a business owner. The best way to get genuine, unbiased feedback about the experience you’re providing is to simply ask.
And guess what? Not only do you gain better insight into the experience you’re providing, it can also save you customers. Imagine that you had a less than ideal experience with a product and you receive an email asking about how your transaction went. You as the customer were provided with an effortless channel to provide your feedback and the business now has the opportunity to rectify the service issue.
It’s simple and inexpensive to do. Send a survey following purchases or any other type of customer interaction and watch the feedback roll in. That’s the stuff that creates strong and lasting relationships.
4. Establish a Loyalty Program
This is the last step that will really drive home the appeal for customers to come back and purchase again and again. Loyalty programs are immediately appealing because they incentivize multiple repeat purchases while rewarding customers for each purchase made or action taken.
There are a number of different loyalty program options you can choose from. These include:
- A points system used by brands like Sephora, which allows customers to accumulate points with each purchase dollar that can be used for free products, samples, or other incentives.
- Referral programs like those used by Stitch Fix, which incentivizes users to refer their friends to you and earn discounts, products, or credits if they convert.
- Tiered loyalty programs like White House Black Market let you reach higher reward levels the more you spend, including first access to sales, new products, or higher discounts.
Consider your audience and what would motivate them most and benefit your business most significantly when choosing a loyalty program.
Customers are expecting higher levels of service than ever before, especially in a world with 1-day shipping and 24/7 support. Putting policies in place to help your customer service and sales teams have more successful and positive interactions with your customers is a good step, and using technology and policies to better serve long-term customers will help to seal the deal. If you follow these four steps, you’re almost guaranteed to see an increase in customers who keep coming back for more.