Customer loyalty is frequently discussed in the business world for good reason; a person who is willing to conduct repeat business with your company is of more value than one who vanishes after a single transaction. For this reason it is important to reward repeat customers and create loyalty to your company.
The Importance of Customer Loyalty
It can be very tempting to concentrate your advertising and efforts towards new sales or pursuing large accounts, but the success of any business is dependent on the continued business of existing customers. Nearly 80% of business is generated from 20% of its clientele, so it is vital to create a positive experience and provide excellent customer service to existing customers. In addition, the cost of drawing new customers is much greater than sustaining existing relationships. A steady customer base ensures continued success for any small business or large corporation.
Strategies to Keep Customers Coming Back
The approach you adopt to build customer loyalty should reflect the personality of the company and create a positive public image. The relationship with your customer can generate future revenues and go far beyond the initial transaction.
- Provide excellent customer service – Prompt and friendly service will make a lasting impression with your customers, but excellent customer service means going beyond expectations to meet their needs. In order to provide this type of service, it is also crucial that customers have an accessible venue to voice concerns and contact the company directly.
- Offer clear and frequent communication – Whether your company sends newsletters, fliers, or simply follows up after the first transaction, reach out to your customers. Dedicate resources into maintaining contact lists to facilitate easier communication for advertising, promotions, and sending other useful information about your company.
- Set your company apart from its competitors – This can be achieved in a variety of ways, but you want to establish a positive image for your company and create a positive experience for the customer. In addition to customer service, ensure that your employees are knowledgeable about all your products and services. Empower your employees to address and resolve customer concerns immediately to build customer satisfaction. The customer will always have other options, so recognize this fact, and remember it is your privilege to be a part of their life.
- Offer promotions and rewards to loyal customers – Everyone loves special offers and saving money. By offering exclusive rewards, you express your appreciation for their continued patronage and are likely to entice customers to keep coming back. Loyalty programs are a great way to offer rewards and provide special treatment for your best customers.
- Personalize your customer service – Personalized service lets customers know they are appreciated and makes them feel important. Try to use the customer’s name during conversations, send handwritten correspondences, and remember special occasions such as birthdays. You can also personalize your sales tactics by offer product suggestions based on previous purchases. Customers are more likely to continue doing business when they feel respected and receive personal attention.
The Face of the Company
Every customer has experienced the frustration of automated systems and would prefer speaking to a real person. If given the choice between a faceless organization and direct communication, the customer will always choose face to face interaction. The personality of your company is the basis of its reputation, and each employer represents your company. Take the time to invest in proper training to instill the most important values into each employ to ensure they convey these ideals to the customers. The customer will always have a multitude of options, so the personality of the company and quality of customer service will help separate your business from the herd; customers are more likely to interact with businesses they can relate to. Customer relationships are the responsibility of every employee; recognize that each customer is an individual making personal decisions, so foster a more personal relationship.