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10 Ways to Retain Your Customers 10 Ways to Retain Your Customers
It’s a common fact that it costs more to acquire a new customer than retain an existing one. In fact, it costs a company... 10 Ways to Retain Your Customers

It’s a common fact that it costs more to acquire a new customer than retain an existing one. In fact, it costs a company 4-5 times more. That’s why treating your customers right after they buy is just as important as it is before they buy. One of the easiest ways to grow your business is to keep your existing customers coming back.

The average business loses around 20 percent of its customers annually simply by failing to attend to customer relationships. In some industries this leakage is as high as 80 percent. The cost, in either case, is staggering, but few businesses truly understand the implications.

Imagine two businesses, one that retains 99 percent of its customers, the other retaining 60 percent. If both add new customers at the rate of 10 percent per year, the first will have a more net growth in customers per year, while the other will have none. Over the year, the first firm will virtually double, while the second will have no real growth. Everything else being equal, more customer retention will result in a doubling of customers every year without doing anything else.

The consequences of customer retention also compound over time, Even a tiny change in customer retention can cascade through a business system and multiply over time. The resulting effect on long-term profit and growth shouldn’t be underestimated.

These are the 10 Ways to make them happy

1. Show Gratitude by Saying Thank You

It’s an obvious one, but it works. Customers like to feel appreciated especially if they just spent money with you. A good way to start is simply ensuring that your staff say ‘thank you’ after every sale. For higher value products or large purchases, send a thank you note preferably within two days of the customer buying from you. A handwritten note always makes a good impression, but a simple email can do the job too if that’s not practical. There’s a variety of ways to say thank you. It’s easy if it’s in person at your location: “Thanks so much for your business. Please visit us again soon.”

2. Be thoughtful

This sounds simplistic, but the fact is that small things can make a big difference to the way your customers think about you. Going the extra mile for your customers by carrying heavy parcels to their car, opening doors for them, taking the time to explain how a product works or check that a job has been completed to their satisfaction it doesn’t take much effort. But because it doesn’t happen very often, people notice it.

3. Invoke the Inner Ego.

Despite what we often say, most people like things that resemble them in some way. This cognitive bias is called implicit egotism, and is an important thing to keep in mind when communicating with customers. In order to attract the sort of customers you want, you need to identify your target customers down to the last detail and then craft a brand message that perfectly matches their pains, goals and aspirations. It’s easier to fill this existing demand than to create one.

4. Get Customer Feedback

Asking for feedback about a customer’s experience or product quality shows that you’re engaged in your business and looking for ways to improve. Customers do have options to share feedback with review sites like Yelp. You should be responding to comments you receive on those sites. However, you should consider sending a satisfaction survey directly to your customers. Not only will you get valuable feedback to help you make improvements to your business, but it keeps your business top of mind with customers.

5. Reward loyalty

No one likes to be taken for granted, so show your customers that you appreciate their loyalty by special anniversary offers for example you could send them a note with a special offer on the anniversary of them first doing business with you. Or, if appropriate, send them a birthday card with a special offer. This will help to keep them coming.

6. Consistently Communicate

Reach out to your customers on a regular basis. Whether it’s a newsletter, coupon or an event invitation, customers want to hear from you about new products, services, discounts or events. Here’s a guide with some ideas:

7. Do the Unexpected

Another way of going the extra mile for customers is to give them unexpected small rewards. After all, who doesn’t love getting a surprise? For example, if you’re a panelbeater, you could give customers a small tin of touch-up paint after they’ve had their car repaired.

These kinds of gestures won’t cost you much, but they can repay you many times over in customer loyalty and word-of-mouth referrals.

8. Under promise and over deliver

In business and in life perception is everything.

Let’s say a customer orders a product that usually takes three days to deliver. You quote a three-day delivery and the goods arrive on time. The customer gets what they expected – but nothing more.

But what if you quoted a five-day delivery? That way, if the goods arrive in three days as they normally do, you can contact the customer and arrange for early delivery. The customer gets more than they expected, and their perception of your service goes up.

Here’s another example. When quoting for a job, it’s common to underestimate how long it will take or how much it will cost, because you want to win the job. But when you exceed the original quote (as happens frequently), your customer feels ripped off. A better approach might be to estimate more accurately so that your final price is the same or (even better) less than the quote. The customer’s perception is that they’ve got real value for money and that you’ve tried hard to keep costs down.

9. Highlight a Customer Experience

Showcasing one of your customers in your store, in an email newsletter or a retweet can garner great engagement  Everyone likes a little attention paid to them or their cause. If you’ve got a customer raising funds for a charity, offer to put up a flyer in your window, sponsor their cause, tweet about it or mention it in one of your blog posts.

10. Turn negatives into positives

All of the above ideas can help you delight your customers, but it’s a fact of life that all businesses deliver negative customer experiences from time to time. If your staff fail to deliver exceptional service it’s disappointing, but instead of chastising or punishing them, sit down with them and ask them what they think can be done to provide better service. Focus on the problem, not the person. It may be that there are blocks that prevent them from delivering exceptional service, and this is an opportunity to identify and remove them.

Dada Chima

Am a Growth and Productivity Hacker. When am not writing, i spend most of my time motivating other people.....

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