It is a common rule of thumb in business that it is usually cheaper to maintain old customers rather than constantly gaining new ones. As a result, you will want to implement the best customer retention plan possible to ensure you are maximizing your business’s revenue.
With this notion in mind, here are a few effective customer retention strategies to keep your customer base locked in place.
Leverage customer loyalty
A major variable in any business/customer relationship is loyalty. Therefore, make sure you are maximizing the effect of the loyalty established with customers over time. For instance, your business may create a customer loyalty program in which longstanding customers are rewarded for their continued business. This approach will make your customer base enthusiastic about supporting your business via positive reinforcement.
Expanding on the notion of customer loyalty, it may also be effective to implement a Customer Relationship Management system (CRM). This type of system will allow your business to “track, monitor and communicate with customers using an automated platform,” increasing transparency by means of a customizable approach unique to each customer. A CRM will ultimately ensure you are meeting the specific needs and desires of all your customers.
Keep customers in the loop
The easiest way to deter customer relationships is to be a poor communicator. If you are dealing with a set of longtime customers, these customers will likely want to remain in the loop in terms of your business’s updates, changes, announcements, and other matters that could potentially impact their next transaction. An easy way to maintain customer communication is to send out a regular newsletter or email blast containing the aforementioned information.
Use social media
Social media has proven to be an asset to businesses in countless industries worldwide, and it can be a very effective customer retention tool. In many cases, social media outlets will allow your business to further expand upon its communication skills by establishing and strengthening a real-time flow of information. For example, Twitter could give your business an excellent opportunity to keep customers informed of business announcements as soon as these announcements materialize, rather than confining this information to a slower moving email or newsletter. Furthermore, a large “like” or “follower” base could reflect well on your business in terms of web-based marketing.
Focus on customer service
Though it may go without saying, customer retention is contingent on excellent customer service, and this variable should stand as a main focal point for your business. Make sure you are taking time to address all seemingly minuscule details when communicating with clients — leave nothing untouched that might be important to the customer’s experience. Additionally, use customer complaints as an opportunity to learn from past mistakes and ultimately mend customer relationships that could otherwise be in jeopardy.