There are various customer retention strategies that you can implement in your business. Some better than others, but let’s talk about the ones best readied to help your business be successful.
Firstly, why should you even worry about customer retention? Maybe you have a busy store already, so what is the point?
Well, customer retention is just that: retaining customers; keeping existing customers around. Instead of relying on new customers that may or may not continue to find their way into your place of business, you can gain a steady “following” of regulars that keep coming back.
Retaining customers is how many businesses make it through the slow seasons, as they are called. There are many ways of doing this, some more nuanced than others.
Did you know that your current customers on average spend nearly 70% more than new customers? True story. My guess is, you want to keep your current customers coming, am I right?
Of course one of the best strategies for maintaining this steady flow of customers is through excellent customer service. If customers are treated well, with care and respect, that resonates with most people.
No one wants to be treated badly or as though their business isn’t appreciated. Show appreciation for their time and their investment in your business! They are, after all, what keeps you in business, right?
Get to know them if possible. The better you are at keeping your finger to the pulse of your public, the better suited you are to take great care of them. If you know and understand your audience, you know and better understand how best to meet their needs.
There are countless ways and players involved in this process. It’s a culture that must be instilled in your place of business, and it extends to every single employee you have working in your store.
If every one of your employees is on the same page, you will rest easier on your days off (is that a thing for you?) knowing and having confidence that your customers are in good hands while you are away.
There are some programs that you can implement into your store’s operations that will encourage customers to continue to make your store their #1 Stop Shop.
Have you ever heard of or been a part of customer loyalty programs? They are different with different types of business, but the common theme is the same.
Customers are given some sort of rewards card or club ID that they use when they purchase products or services from your store. They then receive discounts or points at the time of their purchase.
These programs are very easy to start and are not expensive to maintain. Basically, once you decide on a program that works for your business, you start the program and begin issuing cards with barcodes on them to your customers that wish to join the program.
Or have them download the app on their smartphone and sign up with a push of the Facebook button if you’re using a digital rewards program, which we recommend.
If you’re going with a physical loyalty program, your customers carry their cards with them and then scan or enter their card numbers when they make purchases. If any of the items they are purchasing are part of the loyalty program pricing, they automatically get a discount on those items.
One of the reasons we recommend so highly going digital is because customers always have their phones with them. So that’s one less card to carry around. All they have to do is whip out their phone and scan a QR code you have at your checkout and, Pow!, like that they have one or more punches in their digital punch card.
You can also set up and send timed VIP deals straight to their phones. They’ll see the deal start and they’ll also see a countdown timer… the app will also remind them when they only have so much time left.
How about sending a text message, too, to your customers’ phones, letting them know of a discount you’re having?
I smell money. 😉
Of course, the information you collect from all your customers because of the digital nature of the program is invaluable. You can see customers’ spending habits as well as what items or services are hottest. Then you can tailor offers to your customers, thereby selling even more great stuff!
What does any of this have to do with customer retention? Well, think about it for a minute. Everyone likes to get special discounts, right? I know that I, personally, very much enjoy getting goods that I normally buy at a discounted price. When I know that going to a particular place will guarantee me a lower price point, I tend to go there for my goods.
I also tend to go more often. It’s in my subconscious. And, more importantly, it is in your customers’ subconscious. The more money they save, the more money they spend, and the more often they spend it.
When your customers understand that if they shop in your store (which they already love because of how well they are treated, right?) they will be shopping on a more flexible budget because of the savings they get in return, they will most likely think twice before shopping at your more expensive competitors.
The best thing about these types of customer retention methods is that the word gets out!
Customers like to share their pleasant experiences with others.
Friends, family, co-workers, and anyone else that they are around on a regular basis will eventually hear about the great experience they just had at your store and will (maybe not today or tomorrow) eventually come see what all the hype is about.
Once they see what you are doing and how great of an experience it is shopping in your store, and, once they see the savings they can get from your incentive programs, chances are it won’t be the last time you see them.
Retaining customers is extremely important for any business. Customers are much more likely to share negative experiences with their friends and family and even more likely to stop shopping at those places they don’t feel appreciated or taken care of.
For those smart business owners that understand the importance of customer retention, the methods for retaining customers are endless. These are just a few of the more effective and obvious methods.
For questions regarding these and other methods, give us a call at RedFynn! We’d love to discuss these and other customer retention strategies that will help your business really start to gain “lifers”!
Not only can we help you increase profits, but we’ll show you how to increase savings, too. Here to give no obligation, expert advice! Questions about credit card processing, merchant services, or business loans? Give us a buzz!