Ecommerce is an important piece of moving forward in business. Providing products and services online has become one of the most important methods to stay ahead. Many are finally looking at online opportunities to acquire new customers.
Your business’ customer acquisition strategy should be rock solid, but it’s equally important to ensure you have a plan for customer retention. When your top 1% customers can spend more than 30 times your average customers, it becomes a no-brainer that taking care of these high spenders will yield you better long-term results.
If you’re looking to fine-tune your customer retention strategy, here are some things you should look into.
Perfect Your Buyer Persona
This is the first thing you should always look back to when you’re looking to acquire or retain customers. Who are your buyers? What are their problems? What kind of decisions do they tend to make? How can your business be more useful to them?
Make sure you are not creating your persona from stereotypes that you or your team may have. Your persona should have the following information, ideally obtained through research:
- What makes them act like they do? What are their goals and needs that influence their decisions? How do they typically find and evaluate businesses to support?
- What makes them stop buying? What things would make them hesitate or think twice from purchasing a product or service? What information do they need to have to make decisions?
- What is their general attitude or mental state? Do they like scoring quick deals or do they prefer an unhurried experience? Are they brand-conscious or do they focus on maximizing their cash?
Create an Effective Lead Magnet
Lead magnets are promotions or other incentives that your business can give potential customers in exchange for their contact information. This information is usually in the form of an email address that you add to your mailing list, but it can be phone numbers and other information that you can use to make a sale.
These lead magnets can be any of the following examples:
- Guides and tutorials that are of interest to your customers’ based on their profile, or ones that help them use your product/service most efficiently -- these can be in the form of downloadable PDFs, videos, etc.
- Resource lists and cheat sheets are very easy to absorb and are very useful even to a more mature market
- Free trials and consultations can help you get a foot in the door and helps removes customers’ worries about product or service fit
- Exclusive deals can be in the form of free shipping promos, discounts, etc.
If your content is useful and easy to digest for your market, you will leave a positive mark in their minds, leading them to trust your brand more.
Enable Upgraded Guest Checkouts
While it is tempting to require your shoppers to sign up to check out the goods they buy from you--after all, who doesn’t want more customers data?--having guest checkouts are important as it lowers the barrier for potential customers, especially those new to your brand.
But having guest checkouts doesn’t mean that you don’t try to steer your customers into creating an account with you. You can encourage people to create an account after their first purchase by giving them new-member discounts or a loyalty program if they become a member.
You can also invite them to save their details for faster future checkouts, or tell them it’s easier to check their order status if they set a password with you.
Define Your Brand Personality
Social media and email lists can help create genuine relationships with customers. However, if you go about your social media like a pushy salesperson, it may even turn some people off. Developing a brand personality and letting that shrine through your social media accounts can net you a good following and help people feel closer to your brand.
Popular fast food chains like Denny’s, Wendy’s, and Taco Bell have gone this route, and have interesting and fun interactions on Twitter with their followers, who are only too happy to engage with the brand on social media.
Your brand personality can also extend to breathing life into automated chatbots. These chatbots can help standardize your interactions with customers, but also take some of the load away from your customer service staff and social media managers.
Of course, it’s important to monitor complaints and negative feedback on social media. But make sure that you address them in a timely and professional manner, according to your brand personality.
Always Review and Reevaluate
Don’t fall into the trap of being secure in your knowledge of your customers. Your customers are always growing and changing, and you may need to adapt to market conditions or shift your focus over the course of your business as the market matures or moves on.
Revisit your buyer persona regularly. Use that information to fuel the other decisions you have to make regarding your business and marketing efforts. Incremental changes that grow with your customer can also foster brand loyalty. It gives long-time customers a sense that your brand is with them in their journey.
A solid customer acquisition and retention strategy helps your customer make that journey with you as well. Don’t leave it to chance.