Customer loyalty is an integral and beneficial part of any business. It is simply the process of providing your customer with benefits, products, and services which make them choose you over the competitor every time. This might mean great customer service, unique and exclusive products, or any other way your business is able to make itself stand out among the competitor. In fact, repeat customers typically spend more than 67% than non-loyal, one time customers. The benefits are clear in a financial sense, but lets explore some other great reasons to promote loyalty among your customers!
Do you remember when you were in college and you’d get a punch card that said, ‘buy six coffees, get your seventh free?’ This is a great strategy to get return customers for your business. If your business can’t do something like this, or you primarily do your business online; you could offer things like free shipping or other discounts. Whatever the case, your customers need to feel rewarded for choosing your business instead of others, so you need to find a benefit that’ll engage them to do business with you.
While this might be for medium to larger businesses, local collaborations are also a great way to get customers excited about your business. It gives them a wider range of products to choose from, and shows that your business is open to things such as collaboration; making you appear more friendly and amiable instead of just another company looking for money. You can also consider working with charities, helping out local organizations which may be short on funds or resources.
Reviews are a great way for any business to build a solid reputation. Authentic testimonies go a long way to convincing new customers to shop with you. Collecting reviews through sites like Google or Yelp is a great way to showcase where your business both shines and needs improvement. By asking for feedback, you open the floodgates to both praise and criticism by your customers. This means you’ll have to respond to it and change your business according to this feedback. While this might sound time consuming or difficult, it can also be a great way of showing a company accountability that encourages trust with consumers and boosts overall business.
Thank yous can go a long way. Many websites will often include things such as thank you notes, extra goodies or surprises with orders, or free bonus items if they spend a particular amount of money. For example, many mail order marijuana businesses often gift their customers additional product for spending certain amounts of money. This makes your business both seem highly stable financially (since you’re able to give away free product), and that you value your customers hard earned money and wish to thank them.
In the event of a customer emergency, service delay, or product malfunction; the best step your company can take is to set up some form of dedicated customer or chat based support. Even if you’re only using things such as chat bots, these applications can be loaded with important information for your customers when they’re in times of crisis. If you can also manage a full, human customer support team then it’ll go over even better. Large companies like Amazon and Google manage massive support teams, and while this can be difficult for some smaller teams and businesses to implement, the overall benefits for improved customer service and relations is nearly limitless.
One thing many customers dislike is the used of jargon or industry language by a company or business. In fact, 75% of consumers say they’ll be more likely to purchase a product or service if the information is presented to them in plain, everyday language. The same rule then should apply to the customer service you provide. Try to avoid using complicated language which may confuse or frustrated a customer, and instead try to explain things in layman terms. You don’t have to dumb it down for them, but don’t expect every customer will know each intricate part of your businesses or products either.
Let’s say for a second that a long-time, repeat customer has requested a refund from you a few days after this return policy has expired. You may lose the customer, and vital business; if you reject their request. While it can be difficult to do this for each customer due to price and business ramifications, small exceptions like this can turn your small-time, regular but casual shoppers into life-long fans and advocates of your business. Going the extra mile never hurts, and nets a multitude of benefits for your team.
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