A study of Gartner Group suggests that around 80 percent of the average company’s future gains will come from the existing 20 percent of customers.
It may sound like a broken record, but it is essential to keep in mind that existing customers are the lifelines of each and every company. That’s why many emphasize the importance of developing loyal customers and retaining them.
Customer retention is by far a fruitful strategy to increase your profits by keeping existing customers. But for that to happen, it is important for them to stick around. So, what measures can you take to help your customers stay for a longer period of time?
To keep your customers happy and reach your profit goals at the same time, it is important that you reevaluate, optimize and update your customer retention strategies. Here are top 10 ways to retain customers and scale your business accordingly.
10 Customer Retention Strategies
This is a crucial factor in the customer retention process. Irrespective of the industry you belong to, it is important that your customers can reach out to you hassle-free. Earlier, telephonic accessibility was considered important. But, with the changing times, it is important to be present 24*7 using live chat support software.
A study by Forrester states that customers today expect proactive outbound communication. Seventy percent of companies are investing in SaaS-based tools such as live chat software to ensure proper customer service.
2. Being Proactive
Companies often wait for their existing customers to reach out to them. Remember, not everyone complains. The customers just get fed up, and they leave. According to a study by groovehq.com, for every customer who complains, there are 26 customers who don’t say anything.
Proactively ask your existing customers to give feedback about your product or service. Offer cash back points to the ones who review your products. Invest in tools like live chat or help desk that assist your brand to engage with customers proactively.
3. Survey Customers
The best way to learn about the customer’s needs is to understand their expectations of your brand. So, send across surveys that help your operators provide personalized support at their next visit. You can always incorporate questions like: What attracted you to our products? What can we do to maintain your loyalty as a customer? What can we do to make you more interested in our products? What improvements are you looking forward to?
4. Special Offers
Designing and promoting special offers has proven to be a cornerstone technique of proactive customer retention. Businesses should provide their existing customers with the access to special promotions before a wide-scale launch. The gesture shows them that their loyalty is being valued. It helps to take customer satisfaction to another level. Special offers and discounts can be offered with personalized phone calls, e-blasts, and mailers.
5. Creative VIP Programs
Sometimes the greatest motivator of behavior can be the status you offer. A VIP program takes bonus points to the next level by offering customers elevated status and exclusive offers. This should be in addition to the increasing rewards. The strategy should be – the more you shop, the more you get!
6. Time-Limited Promotions
Often, the top brands present banners highlighting a time-limited promotion. They focus that visitors must complete the purchase within a preset amount of time. Promotions offered can be dependent upon the audience segment they belong to. Moreover, you can also offer a promotional gift card to the visitor’s cart. This showcases the promotion offer during the checkout process.
Remember, the benefit is twofold: the time-limited promotion boosts the conversion rates, and the gift card ensures that the customers make another purchase.
7. Be Honest and Transparent
A company should not hold anything back from their clients. Work hard to establish a relationship built on transparency. Ensure no false promises; they can result in dissatisfaction. Further, owing up to mistakes and amending them is a win-win situation.
8. Stay Ahead of Competitors
New competitors emerge every other day. They aggressively target prospects in an effort to build their customer base. Be aware of the strategies that your competitors use to lure your customers away. Make sure you can combat them with strategies like:
- Lowering the prices of products/services that you offer on your site
- Creating a stronger and positive social media presence
- Using Promotions like free gifts, free samples, new membership offers, and complimentary shipping
- Offering first-time user discounts
9. Address Sources of Customer Dissatisfaction
Improving accuracy and clarity of your products, and other processes can help you minimize customer angst. Simply increase the power of the service and sales team. 100 percent attention should be given to addressing customer complaints promptly. Moreover, offer retention-oriented promotional discounts to appease the unsatisfied customers.
10. Offer Alternatives
Sometimes customers look for a product or service that you don’t offer. In such cases, you should offer a close alternative. Or, in case a similar alternative isn’t available, then you must solidify your image as a trusted industry expert. You must be in a position to recommend them to an industry supplier who can help your customer find that product. Here are some examples wherein you may have to call for this strategy:
- Your customer needs a product that you have discontinued, and you have no alternatives.
- You can’t deliver the product that your customer needs because of lengthy backorders.
- Your customer urgently needs a service, and your bandwidth is squeezed, or you are short-staffed.
The importance of customer retention can’t be ruled out. Indeed, it is one of the best ways to keep your profits constant. With the various kinds of SaaS tools, businesses must gather information about their customers and also manage their activities. This will not only help them to retain the customers but also attract new customers by providing great services.
About the author: Jared is a customer-support Specialist, a marketing evangelist and a book lover, associated with ProProfs Chat. Jared is passionate about customer support and loves to solve customers’ queries. He is always keen to develop new strategies to help customers seeking live chat assistance for a delightful experience. You can connect with Jared on LinkedIn.
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