Every business owner wants their business to thrive, but what is the key to their success and growing profits? Their customers. A company’s employees play a big part in selling to the customer but if it weren’t for the customer there would be no sale. It also isn’t down to how many leads that come into the business, profits and success do not solely rely how many new customers are introduced. These customers may not convert or remain customers for very long, it is their longevity and loyalty as a customer to that company that drives continued revenue and profit for that business over time, known as the Customer Lifetime Value.
Of course acquiring new leads is great but even though only around 12 to 15% of your customer base are existing customers they make up 55 to 70% of sales. The power of a loyal customer base should never be underestimated. So why is everyone’s goal to gain as much new business as possible but not focus any efforts on the customers that already know and love them? You should not rely on customers that may make a small order with you once and then more than likely order with your competitor for their next order. Even if small, repeat business is paramount, and although retaining customers can be hard it is worth it.
Why not increase the number of repeat and lifelong customers of your business and continue to maintain the relationships you have with your current ones? When Groove HQ increased their customer retention by just 5% they reported a healthy 95% increase in profits. Here are some strategies to employ within your business to help you start your customer retention journey.
Consistently Great Customer Service
A survey carried out by American Express revealed that customers who feel that they have received great support from a company are on average likely to spend 13% more with that company. Providing great customer service and making sure that a customer has a satisfying experience is good but you want to be able to transfer that average extra 13% of spending to all customers, you need to provide great customer service at all times to every customer.
Make sure that customers feel like and know that you care about them and the potential issue that they are coming to you with. Take an empathetic approach when talking to a customer, understand where they’re coming from and try to feel the frustration that they are experiencing. It’ll help you to respond in a way that you would like to be responded to because it’ll start to feel like it is your problem and that it matters to you.
Ask for Feedback
Following a customer interaction ask the customer how they would rate the service and why they chose to give that particular rating. You could automatically send them a survey once a call or live chat session is over or at the end of an email customer service interaction. It could be as simple or as detailed as you like, but make sure you don’t bombard your customers with surveys all of the time, you need to remember that customers typically don’t like using up their own time to do things that won’t benefit them.
Ask them to rate your customer service, your product or your company and then ask them for a reason. Analyse the responses periodically to take note of what your customers think you need to improve on and what they like so you can continue to provide that. If you notice a trend in the responses and identify an area you can improve on put a plan in place to do so.
Personalisation and Humanisation
Customers aren’t fans of having to go through long computer generated non-responsive menus when they call your support department. They want to speak to someone directly who can help them with their problem straight away or direct them to someone else who will be able to aid them without any further transferring. Humans thrive off human interaction and love conversing with a real person who understands them and can give them a specific answer. Customers have better experiences when they receive specific personalised responses instead of just being redirected from one place to another by a menu system to only gain generic information from an automated message.
Going above and beyond for customers will ensure that that they have the best support experience, they will be more than satisfied and so more than likely to remain a customer and return for further business. Acknowledge your customers, let them know that you value them as a person and understand that they are a real person. Sending out something personalised to customers such as a handwritten card or even just a reward such as a discount code just for them will make them excited, everyone loves a surprise especially when it is just for them.