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How To Engage And Inform Your Customers For Maximum Retention

A woman types in her credit card details into a website on a laptop computer. She is at a table with a handbag and other items spread throughout

How To Engage And Inform Your Customers

Solidifying a customer relationship is a big investment for many businesses. Months, hours, and days are spent creating marketing materials, taking phone calls, and in-person meetings to get a sale across the line, but sometimes aftercare can be an afterthought. Post-sale strategies are fundamental to modern business as businesses that show they care to create long-lasting customer relationships, which are gold. Customer retention needs to be a focus for your business to ensure your efforts are not in vain and you retain your hard-won customer base.

According to Semrush, the probability of selling to an existing customer is between 60% and 70%, and the probability of selling to a new customer is between 5% to 20%. In other words, it costs significantly less time, money, and effort to keep a current customer happy than it does to win over a new one. Additionally, according to Invesp CRM, “a 2% increase in customer retention has the same effect as decreasing costs by 10%.” There are numerous reasons why customers defected from brands, but some common ones include poor service (26%), feeling unimportant or unrecognised by the company (23%), and disappearing value (19%).

Businesses need to focus on creating exceptional post-sale experiences for their customers if they want to reduce churn and grow their business. Some ways to do this include staying in touch with customers after a purchase, following up on any problems or issues they had during the sale process, offering loyalty programs or discounts for repeat customers, and simply showing them that you care about their experience with your brand. By putting in the extra effort post-sale, businesses can create loyal customers who come back repeatedly and help promote your brand through word-of-mouth marketing.

What Is Customer Retention?

Customer retention refers to the company’s ability to keep its customers over time. Customer retention is a key metric that encompasses a customer’s satisfaction, repurchase behaviour and engagement, and the likelihood of not moving to a competitor. A company with strong customer retention has repeat customers who are happy with the product or service they’re receiving.

To achieve customer retention, businesses must go above and beyond to make the customer’s life and purchasing journey special. This might mean offering loyalty rewards, excellent customer service, or unique and personalised experiences. By creating a positive and memorable customer experience, businesses can encourage them to come back again and again. Strong customer retention is essential for any business that wants to succeed in the long term.

Why Customer Retention Matters?

It’s hard for a business to run successfully on one-off sales; it’s costly, time-consuming, and not an effective business model. Most businesses know that customer retention is important. But why? What are the benefits of keeping customers happy and coming back? Here are a few reasons why customer retention should be a top priority for your business.

1) Happy customers are likelier to refer their friends and family, which can lead to more business.

2) Loyal customers are less likely to switch to a competitor, which means they’re more likely to

stick around and buy from you again.

3) Retaining customers costs less than acquiring new ones, so it’s more cost-effective in the long

run to keep them happy.

4) Satisfied customers are more likely to use products and services, meaning they’re more likely

to spend money with you.

5) Customer retention helps build brand loyalty, which can lead to increased profits down the road.

Know Your Customer Retention Rate (CRR):

Are you tracking your customer retention rate (CRR)? If not, you should be. Knowing your CRR or churn rate is a key ingredient in understanding how well you’re retaining customers and where you might need to make changes to improve customer loyalty.

How To Calculate Your Retention Rate:

1. Find out how many customers you have at the end of a given period (week, month, or quarter).

2. Subtract the number of new customers you’ve acquired over that time.

3. Divide by the number of customers you had at the beginning of that period.

4. Then, multiply that by one hundred.

Customer Retention Strategies:

1. Create A Customer Account/ Members Area.

2. Improve Your Customer Support.

3. Start A Customer Loyalty Program.

4. Send Engaging Emails.

5. Send A Discount After The First Purchase.

6. Collect Customer Feedback.

7. Start A Referral Program.

8. Offer Personalisation.

9. Consistently Delight customers.

10. Offer Fast Delivery.

11. Make Returns Easy.

1. Create A Customer Account/ Members Area:

Customer accounts or member areas are a great way to boost customer loyalty. Customer accounts enable a customer to create a personalised area on your digital platforms, assisting in strengthening bonds. In these areas, customers can select what information they receive, such as news on product releases and sale alerts. Customers can keep track of previous purchases and monitor delivery tracking.

2. Improve Your Customer Support:

The frustration of being unable to talk to a real person on the phone or have an email replied to can be real. Be sure to have adequate customer support so your customers know they are not just a number but important to you. Clearly display the ways a customer can communicate with you; this may be via email, social media, or phone, don’t make them search for details, as this can be off-putting. Be sure to reply promptly and, if appropriate, display things like frequently asked questions sections on your website to help customers solve their queries or issues that arise.

“58% of customers belonging to a brand’s loyalty program buy from that brand at least once per month.”

A screenshot of the Sephore beauty insider rewards program

Sephora’s Beauty Insider Rewards program.

3. Start A Customer Loyalty Program:

A well-executed customer loyalty program has the potential to increase revenue, decrease costs and create brand advocates. Numerous studies have shown that it costs far less to retain a customer than to acquire a new one and that repeat customers spend more with a brand over time. Loyalty programs are an excellent way to show your customers that you value their business. You can make your customers feel special and appreciated by offering exclusive discounts and early access to sales or previews of new products.

Nonmonetary rewards such as VIP events or insights into your company can also be effective in loyalty programs. Gathering data on your customers is another important benefit of loyalty programs. This information can help you better understand your target audience and cater to their needs. By creating a loyalty program, you can show your customers that you appreciate their business and take steps to ensure they remain happy and loyal for years to come.

Types Of Loyalty Programs:

· Points Programs.

· Cash Back Loyalty Programs.

· Punch Card Programs.

· Tiered Loyalty Programs.

· Coalition Loyalty Programs.

· Premium Loyalty Programs (Fee-Based Loyalty Programs).

· Hybrid Loyalty Programs.

4. Send Engaging Emails:

Emails are one of a business’s greatest tools. They can be used to celebrate, inform, and engage and are cost-effective to produce. Send a welcome email to a new customer, celebrate a customer’s birthday or anniversary with an illustrated email, including a discount and/or gain feedback from your customer base. View our back catalogue of blogs, where we have done an entire piece on the power of emails, for further information. The key is ensuring your email content is engaging, informative and speaks to your audience. With a little creativity, you can utilise this valuable marketing tool to its full potential!

5. Send A Discount After The First Purchase:

Encourage a return purchase with a discount offer after the first purchase. This can help build a connection between your business and the customer, show you care and bring the customer back to your profile or website to learn more about your brand and offering.

“14% of customers leave because the business doesn’t know how to handle their complaints.”

6. Collect Customer Feedback:

Collecting customer feedback is an essential part of any good business practice. It helps you to understand what your customers think of your product or service, and it can also give you valuable insights into how you can improve your offerings. There are a few different ways to collect customer feedback. You can send satisfaction surveys via email or include a short survey during the checkout process on your website.

You can also ask customers to leave reviews on popular review sites. Collecting customer feedback is a great way to show that you care about your customers and their experience with your business. It can also help you identify areas where you need to improve. So don’t fall into the trap of talking at your customers; listen to them and use their insights to develop your business and its offerings.

“An average of 68% of new customers come from current customers.”

An example of a referral program from Urban Decay

Above, we see an example of a referral program from Urban Decay. UD members earn points

for each person that they successfully refer. They can later use these accumulated points to

take money off a future purchase.

7. Start A Referral Program:

Referral programs are a great way to attract like-minded customers and give back to existing customers. Incentivise your existing customer base to refer to their networks by offering discounts, vouchers and or other VIP perks. Customer referrals can be a cost-effective way to grow your audience, as your business relies on its investment in the original customer to drive the connection, not spending additional money to attract new customers. RP’s yield more long-term customers on average as the connection is authentically sourced, and these customers are more likely to refer additional customers.

8. Offer Personalisation:

Personalisation is a great way to show customers they are more than a number and can be an excellent element to implement into your business. Retaining customers is more than just providing the expected, as mentioned above, so why not go above expectations and show your customers you care with a personalised shopping experience? This may be a member login on a website that showcases products they would like based on previous purchases or a member-only sales session.

9. Consistently Delight Customers:

We remember brands that make us feel special and delight us. When customers feel appreciated and valued, they are more likely to return and recommend your business to others. There are many ways to delight customers, but it’s important to find what works best for your company and stick with it. Here are a few tips to help you get started.

· Treat your customers on their birthday. This could be in the form of a discount, voucher, or donation.

· Send a personalised email thanking them for their continued custom.

· Host a VIP event.

· Offer a buy one get one free promotion.

· Provide access to a member’s area.

10. Offer Fast Delivery:

Modern consumers desire instant gratification; they want to purchase on a Tuesday and receive their order on a Wednesday. Delivery delays can damage customer relationships even if the remainder of the process is smooth. So, when a brand can offer fast delivery, this can go a long way to cementing bonds between a brand and consumers and encouraging customer loyalty. Enable customers to track their delivery for peace of mind and convenience through apps or your website; transparency goes a long way.

Like during the pandemic, when stretched third-party sources delayed delivery, word up your customer and set expectations, and if an unexpected delay occurs, be sure to communicate and, if possible, reward customers for their patience through discounts or free shipping.

A screenshot of net-a-porters product returns

Net-A-Porter provides multiple options for product returns in the example above.

11. Make Returns Easy:

Make returns easy. Poor return systems can unravel a lot of the hard work your business has done to engage and establish relationships. Clearly state your returns policy on your website and via emails, provide return documents with orders and state how long a customer has to return an item. This transparency can go a long way to nurturing customer relationships and makes for good business practices.

Make sure you are also offering different ways to return items (e.g., in-store, mail) and providing customers with tracking information so they can easily keep tabs on their returns. By making the return process as seamless as possible for customers, you will greatly reduce the likelihood of them taking their business elsewhere.

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How To Engage And Inform Your Customers

Jane Hayes Consulting, Leading You Through The Digital World:

Jane Hayes Consulting is an independent digital marketing agency founded to help businesses create consistent, creatively aligned, and strategic content. We can help you put your best foot forward with our expertly crafted team covering website design and building, marketing strategy, content creation, brand creation, and project management. We work within budget restraints and look toward the future. Need assistance in developing your digital strategy and creating a business advantage? Contact Jane Hayes Consulting today and sign up for our newsletter.


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