7 Best Customer Retention Tips to Boost Your Business
⏱ Reading Time: 8 minutes
When you think about what makes your business run, a few things can come to your mind. Maybe money, employees, connections or contacts in the first place. But you are wrong. All of these aid your business. Your customers are the ones who make your business run.
A business renders either services or products, and they are both served to the customers.
In this digital age, we have gone even one step further. Nowadays the products are delivered or services are rendered just by ordering them on the internet – at a click of a mouse.
It is popularly called eCommerce and consequently there are separate businesses for that too, which guide people to run an eCommerce website.
Well, you will feel there is nothing new in that and that you already know about it. You are perfectly right, but do you know the magnitude of such transactions?
If we take for example Shopify, you might be surprised to know that it is one of the biggest e-commerce platforms which has contributed $183 billion in economic activity globally. It is larger than the GDP of almost 132 countries.
How do you think they are in a position to carry on business on such a huge scale? Do you think they search for new customers every day and get thousands of new customers per day?
It is true for every business that you have to go on searching for new customers constantly, but along with that what really makes your business big is the retention of the existing customers.
In this article, we would like to share with you some tips feasible for customer retention.
7 Customer Retention Tips
1. Treat Your Customer as a Person and Not as a Sales Generating Object
The number one customer retention tip is about something that seems quite superfluous to say. Customers are humans with sentiments and emotions, and this is how you should treat them. They are not merely sales-generating objects.
It is 100% true that the customer has opted to buy your product only after considering the range of other products available in the market. But there is always room for improvement.
To retain customers you need to understand their needs, emotions and have an empathetic attitude towards them. This is possible only if you listen to your customers rather than just boast about your product.
With this understanding, we care more about the customer. And this care shouldn’t be time-limited. You need to be sensitive about the needs of your customers in the long run. E.g. a customer to whom you once sold a small toy might be in need of books or stationery for their kid after their kid grows up. If you have a proper system installed in your organization then you can stay updated about your customers’ current needs and go on suggesting or selling them products accordingly.
Picture 1. Why customers leave statistic
2. Improve Service and Be Responsive
The best way to retain a customer is to constantly strive to improve your services. This mainly refers to paying attention to the minute details and trying to be responsive.
You need to set a response time KPI for your team so that it is done in the best possible way. It is relatively simple to sell the product once, but you should strive for continuous improvement and be open to suggestions. You should then try to analyze whether those suggestions are practicable and would increase product efficiency.
If the answer to both of the above questions is ‘yes’ then you should try to implement it after considering the cost factors.
3. Make Customer Retention Your Number One Priority
When you search for a new customer it is just like beginning from scratch, whereas when you are retaining the old customers you don’t have to begin from scratch and it takes less effort.
The key is to think about what else you can do for your existing customers or what other services/products they might find useful. This can help to maximize profits and with fewer efforts and money invested you get good results.
4. Meeting Unreasonable Requests of the Customers
In order to ensure customer retention you need to start from putting yourself in your customers’ shoes while meeting their demands. It is very much possible that some demands might seem pretty unreasonable to you. But remember that we live in a digital age and that everything you do wrong can spread across social media like fire.
One adverse remark on social media can dampen your sales similarly, one good remark can make it touch the sky. Well, more and more demands of the same sort can indicate the possible area of improvement.
Turn difficult situations into opportunities to gain a customer forever. The best time to show your support and care is when the customer is upset or frustrated. Don’t mind going out the way to settle the issue for the customer because it is that ‘single customer’ who can ruin your business or make it skyrocket
Understand and measure why your customers are leaving in the first place. It can give you a hint to improve in areas like interface and product improvements, service issues, etc . You need to analyze the sales funnel and ascertain the loopholes.
5. Build the Customer, Not the Sale
Agreed sales is the lifeline of any business but in order to sustain it, you need to make a customer feel like you care about them even after they have made the purchase.
A satisfied customer can recommend your product to someone. It can go a long way in maximizing your profits.
Trying to find unique and new ways to create a partnership with the customer even after the sale is over. This can help you to build a customer. Thank them personally by writing a note mentioning their name. Surprise your customers, do more than what they expect. It is necessary to go the extra mile and do something more than what a customer expects. This can make them stay loyal to you.
One of the most valuable customer retention tips is to strive to over-deliver your promise. For example, Ola and Uber cabs always keep the customer updated about the cab’s current status and the ride is always ready before time. Soon after the ride, they ask for feedback.
Also, employees are the first persons who interact with customers. So you should keep motivating your employees as well.
People feel motivated when they hear their name. Writing a hand letter mentioning a customer’s name can go a long way in retaining the customer. You just need to make them feel ‘special’.
6. Pay Close Attention to the Complaints
Try getting feedback from the customers about your products or services. In case they are not satisfied, they will bombard you with the complaints.
Don’t ignore the customer who complains to you. You should rather thank them for complaining directly to you. They give you the chance to improve, rather than speaking to the whole world about how bad your product/service is. In this way they directly influence the sales. If it comes to that there is hardly any customer retention tip that can help you.
Picture 2. Feedback helps to improve product/service
Creating unique hashtags is also beneficial. You can use your brand name in your hashtag to make it unique and relevant. People who know your business name can find you easily by typing it on Instagram and seeing the posts you shared with your hashtag. No harm in being creative.
7. Let Your Customer Know How Their Feedback Helped to Improve the Product
Just keeping the feedback forms won’t let you gain the customer’s trust. In order to ensure customer retention you need to think about their motivation to buy from you. What truly motivates the customer is the fact that you consider their suggestions and implement them. It can be an icing on the cake if you can incorporate it in a testimonial and write a few words about how it helped you improve the product.
Searching for a new customer is a task which every businessman has to do every day, but retaining the old customers can go a long way when it comes to maximizing the returns.
It does not take much effort to stay connected in the digital age. A simple email, a personalised birthday card, congratulating a customer on their achievement or featuring them in testimonials can make them feel special. After that it is very much possible that they stick to your brand.
One of our basic human needs is to get noticed, cared and loved. And our customer is a living being – we often forget that and we consider them to be a mere resource for our business.
And if you thought that it only applies to the industries that are in the manufacturing sector, think again. A doctor making a call to check up on their patient can mean the world to this person. And it is definitely a good way to retain them as a patient. This person will recommend this clinic to their friends, and this is how a positive image is created. Not to mention the fact that word of mouth marketing is the best possible benefit any business can get.
In the words of Damon Richards, ‘ Your customer doesn’t care how much you know until he knows how much you care’. Think about it.
Chris Wagner is Head of Content @ HostingPill. He regularly writes about hosting, web servers and WordPress. He has more than 9 years of Industry experience.
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