Attracting customers can be a tricky thing, but retaining them can be even more complicated. You want to make sure that your customers are satisfied with your products or services enough to come back.
Even though retaining your customers is more difficult than acquiring new ones, it's also more profitable. Your most loyal and satisfied customers will be happy to spread the word about your brand and, potentially, bring even more people to you.
If you are operating on the U.S. East Coast, a web design company in New York can help you develop techniques to keep your customers satisfied and to keep track of what marketing tactics suit your brand best. Here are some tips on how you can retain your customers through simple yet very effective steps.
Prove your customers they can trust you
Building trust is a major point in retaining your customers because if you fail to meet their expectations once, it will discourage them from buying your goods ever again. Today it is especially difficult to maintain customers' trust since there are so many brands with similar businesses all over the world to choose buying from.
There are several things you can do to learn more about your customers' experiences. You can put out a survey to learn what the average consumer thinks about your brand. You can also gather customer reviews of your products or services through social media channels, email, or your website.
Share online reviews to the company and the public
Apart from using customers' reviews as a tool to help you improve your business where its performance is lacking, a good strategy to build trust with your customers is to share those reviews with the public. Reviews are a huge asset to proving yourself as a trustworthy brand.
People tend to check out other people's experiences online before making a purchase. The more reviews there are that convey a positive message about your brand, the higher the chance your customers will make a purchase. Use the good old "word of mouth" to your advantage.
Customer reviews can give a good insight into your company's performance. As such, you can share them with the rest of your company, so your team is aware of what they need to improve.
For example, if there are some flaws in the product, the designers who created it can take the reviews into account when looking for opportunities to improve it. Your customers will appreciate the effort you put into improving your products and will be more willing to stay loyal to your brand.
Online reviews don't necessarily have to be text-based. Testimonial videos are even more convincing because your customers can see the actual people who benefited from your brand, making the reviews more personal.
Be open to criticism
You might unintentionally break the trust you had built with your customers. Sometimes you will promise more than you can give, or there might be some misunderstandings about the pricing. These things can and probably will happen, but what's important is the way you handle the criticism.
Ignoring your customers or responding negatively will only make matters worse. Sometimes you might have to apologize even if you think there was no harm done. Being open to criticism will make your customers and know that their opinion matters to you.
Have an outstanding customer service
Your company's customer service plays a major role in retaining customers. You might sell the products that meet the customers' needs, but if something goes wrong and your customer service fails to help your customers, they might reconsider buying from you again.
There are certain ways you can improve your customer service team's performance. It is your job to educate them about your brand and everything that it offers. They need to know all about your products and services, so they can give precise answers to customers' questions and concerns.
They also have to be quick in responding to the customers, whether via telephone, email, or live chat on your website. Your customer service should listen to the customers attentively and patiently, and give them clear instructions
Last but not least, your customers should feel like the person they are talking to understands their problems and is willing to help. If the customers are satisfied with your service, they are more likely to overlook the problems they were facing to begin with.
Make your customers remember you
Another strategy to keep your customers coming back to you is to remind them over and over about your brand. This means keeping them in touch with the latest news your brand has. Keep your customers informed about products, new locations of physical stores or discounts that you offer.
Educate your customers about your business
Educating your customers about your business gives you a better chance to keep them. It's not quite the same as promoting the products you're offering. Don't try to convince them why they need to buy from you but teach them how they can solve problems, using your goods.
This will give them a sense of security because they will know what to expect from your products. There will be less room for complaints which will again build trust and bring more loyal customers to your business.
The way you can achieve this is by interacting with your customers. Organizing workshops or giving your customers hands-on experience is a good method of educating them because interactive training is more engaging and memorable.
If you are not able to organize real-life workshops, you can always upload videos to your website or social media. For example, tutorial short videos about facts and stats related to your business could educate your customers about your brand even more. PlayStory allows you to make some really great interactive videos.
Use email automation
Sending newsletters to your customers will keep them updated about your brand. Unlike manual monitoring, email automation gives you the option to send an email to all of the customers at once. This is much more practical and it saves you a lot of time.
Email automation can be used for different purposes, like welcoming your new customers or celebrating their birthdays or anniversaries. You want to educate your customers about the benefits you offer. Sometimes you just want to remind your customers about your business with a re-engaging email.
Be careful not to send automated emails without testing them first. Establish the tone and voice you want to use when talking to your clients. What you also want to avoid is sending too many emails. Spamming your customers will only get your emails muted or ignored.
Make a customer communication calendar
Even if your customers don't reach out to you for some time, that doesn't mean you shouldn't contact them now and then. A customer communication calendar will help you keep track of your interactions with your customers.
A communication calendar can help you keep track of your promotions, sales or inform your customers of a new store location Or, you can use it to simply keep track when to remind your customers that their account might expire and they should renew it.
Reward your customers with a loyalty program
It's great if you already have your loyal customers. So why not give them something as a "thank you" for being your client? Offer them a loyalty program. There are different kinds of loyalty programs you can offer your customers to choose from.
For example, paid programs offer customers unique benefits in exchange for a certain fee. On the other hand, spend-based loyalty programs give your customers credits for spending a certain amount of money on your brand.
Keep things practical
Some aspects of your website, like poor loading speed or a messy page layout can discourage your customers from making a purchase. Remember that consumers today are more likely to use their mobile phones rather than computers to browse the Internet.
You may have a perfectly-functioning webpage when viewed on a PC, but on mobile devices, it may look completely different. If the text is not organized and the image size is too big, it will give your customers the impression that you are not as professional as you want to be.
Keep track of your churn metrics
Losing a customer is a common occurrence, especially with so many competitors that can offer something you might not have. Churn analysis displays the number of customers you lose during a certain period of time,
Churn analytics save you money. Retaining current customers is cheaper than acquiring new ones. With churn metrics, you can calculate the number of customers that stopped buying from you and the total number of customers that you acquired during a certain period.
Descriptive and diagnostic analytics show you the reason why your customers churn. Once you figure out the reason why some of your customers churn, you will be able to predict which ones are likely to churn with the next few months using predictive analysis and work to prevent that.
Travis Dillard is a business consultant and an organizational psychologist based in Arlington, Texas. Passionate about marketing, social networks, and business in general. In his spare time, he writes a lot about new business strategies and digital marketing for DigitalStrategyOne.