Successful business owners know that well planned customer retention strategies are integral to creating a sustainable business. From implementing customer retention ideas and keeping current customers engaged mangers and owners of small and medium sized business have a lot to gain.
Using customer retention strategies in your business you don’t need to solely focus on finding and winning new clients. Finding new clients costs a lot and it’s more efficient and cost effective to maintain the clients you already have. Putting solid customer retention strategies in place can help increase profits of your business without having to find new customers.
What is customer retention?
Before reading into customer retention strategies you should understand what customer retention is and why you need to utilise it in your business.
A downfall of some businesses is that they prioritise penetrating new markets rather than creating a strong loyal base of customers. According to Pathwwway Panama customer retention services, a loyal base of customers can help to keep your income stable allowing you to predict monthly profits.
Using customer retention strategies helps you to create long-term sustainability within your business. Implementing these strategies into your daily routines will enable you to spend less time and money looking for prospective customers.
Why do I need customer retention strategies?
Ever had a customer buy from you a few times and then suddenly stop? It’s frustrating to lose a loyal customer. You can prevent that happening by adding small techniques and customer retention strategies to your everyday processes.
When creating a customer retention plan you’re creating a feedback loop. Take the time to find out why a customer might stop purchasing from you and look at how you can resolve that issue. A customer may leave for many reasons, it could be a lack of interest or emotional connection to your product. Perhaps it’s a loss of trust in your business, or often it’s simply failure to check in with your customer.
There are many other reasons people stop buying from your business, having customer retention strategies in place will help you gather insights and learn from the customers are leaving. You can then use this knowledge to inform your business practices in the future to prevent further customers leaving and encourage more repeat business.
Which Customer Retention Strategies Should I Use?
The average business loses around 20 percent of its customers annually by simply failing to maintain relationships with those customers. Here are a number of simple customer retention strategies that will cost you little or nothing to implement.
- Extraordinary customer service
The most talked about strategy of all customer retention strategies is excellent customer service. You should be striving in your business for excellence in the way you handle your clients.
This attention to your customers not only keeps them coming back to you time and time again. This dedication to a great experience also inspires your customers to spread the word of what great service they received from you.
Always aim to achieve customer satisfaction by providing immediate high –quality response. Extraordinary service will see the number of repeat customers and sales soar. On the other hand poor customer service will drive your customers away to your competition. Check out Pathwwway Panama as an example of a customer retention provider that gets it right.
- Remember to follow up
After you’ve won a new customer and lead them through the sales funnel to secure their purchase, what happens next? This is where a lot of business let the ball slip. They move on to the next prospect as quick as they can and the original customer feels neglected.
One of the simplest customer retention strategies is to reach out regularly to your previous & current customers. Remember to schedule in a monthly update email to your customers. You’ll find this simple act builds trust with them, makes them feel as though they truly matter. This simple act will keep your business at the forefront of your customer’s minds.
- A personal Touch
Individual attention is one of the most effective customer retention strategies. Personal communication with existing customers will help you learn the specific details about your customers and can help inform your marketing campaigns and communications.
Show your customer that they aren’t just a number in a database, send them a email on their birthday. Personalize your communications using customers purchase history or preferences, the effects of personalization shouldn’t be underestimated.
- Reward your most profitable customers
Tracking sales and customer purchases is useful way in to see which customers account for the most incoming revenue.
Use this information to make your customers feel special so they continue to stay your most profitable customers.
You might have a number of incentives to give away. You could reward your most profitable customers to further increase their loyalty.
- Renegotiate a contract
Tough times happen to everyone, sometimes budgets get cut and sadly your service is the one that just doesn’t make the cut. If this happens you’re left in a tricky situation, you need to decide whether you can afford to lose the regular income and cut ties or you can contemplate reducing your pricing in order to keep the account.
Renegotiation is one of the toughest customer retention strategies to decide to implement. Reduced pricing is never a move that you want to be forced to make but it beats losing a loyal customer completely. Try to find a workable compromise that works for both you and the client in the long term.
- Don’t be a stranger
The most effective of all customer retention strategies is said to be frequent and open communication. Contacting your clients on a regular basis is the best way to know them.
When you have an open line of communication you’ll be able to know when a customer is unhappy and you wont need to guess the problem. An open and honest two way conversation with your customers can provide valuable feedback for your products, services and business.
People value companies that are open and honest in their communications. If a mistake is made tell the truth and apologize whenever you need to. This honesty will help to maintain the relationships you have with your customers. It will also make them feel valued and keep them coming back for more.