8 Tips for Generating Return Customers to Your eCommerce Business

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When you operate an eCommerce business, it is imperative to get prospective buyers to visit your website. Your challenge does not end at bringing and converting visitors. You also need to put in efforts to transform one-time customers into repeat customers. Repeat customers generate a steady stream of revenue and enable you to enjoy continuous growth. Getting return customers is an art that you’ll need to master. Having a proper system in place will ensure past customers keep coming back to continue purchasing from your site. 

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Here are some tips to convert one-time customers into return customers. 

8 Tips to Convert One-Time Customers Into Return Customers

1. Improve Website Experience for Your Customers

Just imagine if they walked into a brick-and-mortar store and found it difficult to find products. Or the checkout took too long. Or the employees were offhand and unhelpful. Customers will give a wide berth to such a store. This also happens in the virtual world. When a potential customer visits your website, they need to enjoy a hassle-free experience.

If you’re just starting your eCommerce business and are looking at how to build an eCommerce website, get the navigation right. The site should have user-friendly navigation. Along with a simple and straightforward checkout process. Above all, make sure that your site downloads quickly, especially since eCommerce sites are graphic heavy. Improving the site speed can do wonders for your sales. For example, it can reduce your cart abandonment. Use a content delivery network, get faster web hosting for your online store, and opt for smart routing of traffic as ways to improve the website experience of the visitors.

Bad Website Experience Statistics

Picture 1. Bad website experience statistics

2. Improve Customer Service

There will be times when customers will want more information about a product. Or they may need help to complete the purchase. Under such circumstances, it is always a robust and professional customer service team that comes to the rescue. 

Make sure you have a full-fledged customer service team available through live chat, email or phone to assist customers when the need arises. This personalized service and willingness to assist customers will work wonders. It will also improve the interaction that they have with your eCommerce store. Your customers will, as a result, be more likely to return for their next purchase. 

3. Use Marketing Automation Tools

You need the right tools at your disposal if you are seeing to generate return customers. One tool that all online marketers, including eCommerce businesses, need is a smart CRM. Automating a host of your marketing processes will save you a lot of time and effort. Moreover, it will boost your return on investment

Automating your marketing means you can upsell products to existing customers. You can also use the tool to identify the best leads and prospects. Once you do this, you can reach out to them at the right time and ensure they have a memorable experience with your eCommerce store. It will improve the likelihood of them returning to make more purchases. 

Read Small Business Marketing Automation Platforms.

4. Allow Customers to Track Their Orders and Shipments

Letting customers track their orders and shipments is a wonderful way to ensure engagement even after they leave your online store. Your site can easily become their favorite site if they can track the status of their order and later on the location. It gives them peace of mind knowing that their order was received and finally that the package is on the way. 

A research conducted by Forrester found that nearly 78% of business-to-business customers state that being able to track the order status is essential for overall customer satisfaction. So, you shouldn’t think twice about including this tracking system. 

5. Encourage Customer Engagement on Social Media

Most people have social media profiles and check their accounts on a daily basis. If you know which social media platform your target audience favors, you can establish a presence on that platform to connect with them.  

Use email marketing to offer old customers discounts to follow you on social media. Or, you can provide a discount to everyone who follows you on your preferred platform. Other ways to improve customer engagement are:

  • Holding regular contests that offer contestants free prizes
  • Listing special offers only for your followers

6. Incentivize Your Emails to Past Customers

Have a system in place to track the purchases of your customers. And look for customers, who were previously purchasing regularly but stopped suddenly for no reason. Make an effort to reconnect with them through your email marketing efforts.

You would have to entice and lure such customers back to your site. The best way to do so is by offering them a discount coupon. Alternatively, you can persuade all previous customers who have not come back for another purchase with discount coupons. Or you can send the coupons on their birthday as a surprise gift. Offer discounts on products based on their previous purchase. Give them a reason to revisit your eCommerce store and reconnect with you. 

Discount Statistics

Picture 2. Discount statistics

7. Make Retargeting a Part of Your Online Marketing Strategy

Retargeting refers to a marketing strategy where you can display your business’ ads online just to individuals who have visited your website before. The premise behind this marketing tactic is simple. Just because a person leaves your website after making a single purchase or abandoning the cart, it is not an indication that the person is no longer interested in your products or services. It is quite likely that the person got distracted or was not ready to complete the purchase as yet. 

Retargeting allows you to target visitors who left without making a purchase as well as past customers. The ads showcase your store and this can encourage them to revisit and complete the purchase. One study has found that by using retargeting, it is possible to enjoy a 70% conversion rate. This click-through rate is too high to ignore. Especially if you want to generate return customers. 

8. Reward Your Customers with a Loyalty Program

To ensure repeated return customers, it is necessary to entice them to your site. There they can find the products they are seeking, but also get handsomely rewarded for making the purchase. You can do this with the help of a loyalty program. This program is a way to demonstrate to your customers that you value their patronage. And that you want to give back something to them as a way of thanking them. 

Establish a point system, where customers get a specific number of points for each purchase. Once they reach a particular level, they can encash their points for a significant discount or a free product. Such a program will encourage customers to keep returning to make a purchase at your site rather than your competition’s website. Just make sure that the loyalty program is financially viable for your business and your customer. Set a realistic point system after crunching numbers. It should benefit both your customers and your business.

Perks of eCommerce loyalty programs

Picture 3. Perks of eCommerce loyalty programs

Read eCommerce Loyalty Programs: How to Foster Customer Advocacy?

Make the Most of These Opportunities

It takes a lot of effort and time to generate new customers. That is something you may already be aware of. You should always endeavor to attract new customers, but don’t forget past and existing customers. Using these simple and result-oriented tips, you can transform a one-time customer into a repeat customer. After all, return customers are the lifeline of an eCommerce business and you should not ignore them. 

What is your take on these tips? Do you think they will add to your ongoing marketing tactics and help you generate return customers? 

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8 Tips for Generating Return Customers to Your eCommerce Business was last modified: May 19th, 2020 by Martina Pranjic
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