6 ways to build customer loyalty
Updated: Oct 19
Fact : Keeping a hold of your existing customers costs less to achieve than attracting new ones.
In addition to ensure that you offer the right service or product, at the right price, AND providing outstanding customer service, here are 6 ways to help keep your customers coming back for more:
1. Welcome them with open arms – send your new customers a “Welcome” letter or email, or give them a call. Many studies have found a “welcome” tactic can increase repurchase levels substantially. Charities do this very well. A “thank you for your donation” letter, with more information to persuade you to donate even more. And it works too.
2. Be social – talk to your customers. Let them tell you when they are happy with you, and when they are not. Social Media is a great tool for this. Facebook will increase your fans posting messages of love, but will also increase complainants posting their views. That’s fine. Resolve the issue in a public forum and everyone will see how you swiftly you deal with any issues. Many companies report that complainants that have their problems solved then turn out to be very good customers.
3. Helplines – Either a phone helpline or a “Live chat” function on your website are often extremely good for customer loyalty. But make sure they are helpful. In my experience many helplines can leave you hanging on the line, manned by someone who talks jargon at you, or cost £1 a minute! Doesn’t hurt either to outbound on these helplines either after a customer has had a problem, just to check that all is now ok and that they are happy with the service.
4. Newsletters and blogs – either an e-newsletter or a good old fashioned printed mail out. Make sure though, that it is not just rattling on about your own business’ achievements. Ensure it has useful content and articles. Blogs too will help keep your customers coming back to visit your website.
5. Gifts and added value – Often carrots work better than discounts. For example a car manufacturer gave away a free small car with every purchase of their luxury car. Looks far more appealing (to those not hard pressed for cash) than an £8k discount. However, this is a short term strategy. Customers tempted by gifts are often tempted elsewhere by those with bigger gifts, so ensure it is not your only tactic.
6. Questionnaires – ensure you get your customers’ opinions on your product or service. Get feedback. Most importantly, ACT ON IT!