Consumer Retention

Is consumer retention the key to a better business?

Apart from setting up your work and getting people to visit it; there is one more very vital thing that needs to be given attention too. Once you have customers who shop in your store, they should also like your services. They should be loved so much so that the first time they shop here doesn’t become the last time they want to shop with you. You need to make sure that in every aspect the customers who are with you stay with you. It’s not as a test to their loyalty, but actually the only thing that will make your business grow. After all marketing, new products, launching stuff popularly; everything is for our dear customers. And if you can’t sustain them, then you have to understand you are doing something very essential very wrong. The old customers are the foundation of your business. And frankly without their assurance and allegiance; you have nothing. You can afford to move on new customers once you have the old ones to stay.

Think about it. If you have evangelists who love your work and come to buy from you often, you just hit a jackpot. You can now re-market to this group. Plus they will advertise without asking about you to everyone they know. Increasing consumer retention is a strategy that should be built into your ecommerce systems and maximized fully to ensure the success of your online store. Apart from being really cost effective and smart, retaining customers builds a loyal fan base around your business. Pumped up fans of your brand means more engagement with your company and nothing is more attractive to people than recommendations from fans. Here are some simple strategies to increase consumer retention with your online store.

Style And Attitude Matters

The stuff you sell is going to be same as all other markets have. Apart from the quality and a couple of factors, what really matters while you are trying to engage with customers is confidence and attitude. You have to create an impression with your potential consumers. It should portray you as a professional, not as an immature first time businessman. The vibes you exude are more than important than the customer care service you give. This is because people always assess people when they are placing their trust in any organization. And since you are representing your work, it’s very important how you interact, handle and manage your business.

The number one way to retain customers is to always exude the highest level of maturity. There is nothing that beats being classic prim and proper, with just a hint of formal. Don’t get too over bearing or pushy towards your customers. This will make you look like a desperate show off which is not a good image at all.

Get Your Facts Right

There are a few commonalities that every business should always uphold, like accuracy or honesty, in all their work. No matter what kind of online store you are running, make sure that you add correct descriptions and photographs of the products or services offered by you, including fees. Since, your customer is unable to touch your product, its descriptions and photographs help them to decide whether they want to buy your products or not. The quickest way to lose customers is to lose their trust––and lying does that in seconds! So don’t ever try to over-sell your stuff by adding in descriptions that are not truthful.

You can include certain statements like ‘lowest price’ or ‘high quality fabric.’ But trust me, in case you fail to step up to the claims you make, you will be branded as a cheat! You must remain true to what you’re offering otherwise you will face angry customers, returned purchases, loss of profits, and a damaged reputation. You can write the descriptions in an engaging way, but make sure that you don’t include any lies, just to make your products sell.

Customer Service And Query Resolution

Customer complaints and bad reviews are part and parcel of every enterprise. It could be because someone was having a bad day. Or maybe by a random chance something might not be to the liking of one of your customer! But in order to ensure you continue to uphold and build up your professional image and are able to appease customers’ (and get new ones too) you must address bad reviews and points of customer angst.

Always leave some sort of reply to dissatisfied customers while remaining sweet and empathetic. Do not show any hint of doubt in your brand, its message, or its products. You must demonstrate in actions that you would do anything to make your customers feel satisfied and content. Consumers will give repeat business to such stores without much thought. And even new contacts will flourish without much doubt once you establish your reputation as a reliable businessman.

Respect Time and Money

It is advised to never lie in needs to exaggerate your business. Ensure that your customer knows about any changes, be it in the price of shipping. Come clear to your customer, giving the reason and apologizing to them. A simple apology will surely make them understand the situation. If you keep on making excuses, instead of telling them the truth, it is surely going to hit you back. It just takes an angry click-clacking keyboard on your social pages or feedback to write a bad review about your store and turn many potential customers against you. Respect your customer’s time and money o increase your brand value.

One more thing that people detest upon being lied to about is costs. Specifically shipping costs (since you can’t alter much with the actual price). Customers don’t want to be surprised with varying amounts when they have already placed orders. It is best to let buyers calculate factors like costs, quantity, so that they can decide whether they want to purchase the product or not. Not offering clear cut correct information to consumers will lead to a disgruntled experience with your online store and discourage repeat business.

Award with Open Heart

However professionalism might be expected from you, on a larger scale as a businessman you are expected to have a child’s carefree attitude towards your customers too. Not about your transactions but actually in how you deal with customers. Incentives are solely for encouraging buyers to shop with your website. Everybody loves a good sale. Include such discounts for which your customer just cannot say no. You can put discounts on a certain product category for a week, preferably nearby an occasion for maximum output.

Other than this, another way of enhancing consumer retention is through loyalty or membership programs. You can encourage them to sign up for newsletter or recommend you to their friends and loved one for more discounts. This way, they will surely come back to your store. Also, you can include ‘point system’ to encourage repetitive shopping. For this, a customer needs to sign up for a username or account with your store and points can be given with each purchase. The points are tracked and a reward system decides what you earn as a loyal customer that you are.

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Saahil Goel

CEO and Co-Founder, KartRocket.com

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