Retaining customers should be one of the top priorities of online businesses after you've spent your marketing dollars in reaching and acquiring customers. Considering that it is far easier to retain existing customers than to acquire new customers, let’s look at some of the strategies you can implement to ensure your online customers keep coming back.
Strategies to retain your online customers
1. Send engaging emails
Having an effective email marketing strategy is one of the cornerstones to success in retaining your online customers. The emails you send must be engaging and must be spent sparingly.
Ensure that you provide value when you send emails, whether they are about announcing new products, announcing offers that your customers will be interested in, or sharing discounts or sales on products your customers love.
Additionally, keep an eye on the email marketing metrics and change your strategy accordingly.
2. Personalize your messages
Given the vast amount of data available about your customers, there's no excuse not to personalize your messages. You can personalize your messaging and create highly relevant offers using details such as location, past purchase history, etc.
Personalized messages increase customer engagement, and by sending relevant and timely messages, you can build brand loyalty.
3. Create a loyalty program
Creating a loyalty program is a great way to engage your online customers. You can create a loyalty program with different tiers with unique benefits at each level to engage your customers and encourage them to shop more.
Loyalty programs that offer real services make customers feel appreciated and special. For price-sensitive customers, you can offer discounts, free products, and offers. The key to a loyalty program is understanding what your customers want.
For instance, Sephora has a very successful loyalty program that includes beauty samples since its customers love beauty samples. Sephora also offers exclusive promotions and events for higher tiers.
4. Delight your customers
Chewy is a brand that surprises and delights its customers at every opportunity. There are many instances where they've shown their solidarity with customers in moments of emotional distress, such as the death of pet friends.
Even when customers were about to end their relationship with Chewy, they have had positive experiences with them. They show customers that they care by sending them handwritten cards and flowers and building an emotional connection to customers by connecting with their pets.
As a result of this, the customer plays a huge role in the word of mouth marketing for Chewy, which is a dream for any brand.
5. Provide outstanding customer service
Exceptional customer service is setting the right customer expectations, meeting them, and going above and beyond to do right by your customers when things go wrong. Zappos is an excellent example of exceptional customer service and lives by its motto: deliver customer happiness.
Zappos does this by focusing on the customer and not on the costs. The customer service agents at Zappos are not focused on operational metrics and on keeping costs as low as possible. Instead, their focus is on delivering the best value to customers and helping customers find what they need.
Zappos offers a human touch for the customers by displaying their customer service number prominently on their website and being available 24/7. The customer service at Zappos is lauded by customers, who stay loyal to the brand and are brand advocates for Zappos.
6. Have an effective social media strategy
Social media is absolutely essential to inform and engage with your customers, pay attention to their approvals or their complaints and take action on customer feedback in real-time. You can identify key influencers and advocates of your brand and have a wider reach by creating a positive brand image.
By interacting with your customers on social media, you can build customer loyalty through informal exchanges, by celebrating wins and build brand advocates. You also have a chance to respond to reviews by the customer and set things right if there are any issues. By being responsive and attentive, you can build a great brand that drives business growth.
7. Use content marketing wisely
Content marketing plays a huge role in customer retention strategy. It encompasses the emails, social media messages, responses to customer complaints, testimonials, your blog, and every touchpoint that your customer has with your brand.
In every interaction with your customer, you should have a messaging strategy to engage your customers and meet their needs. When customers visit your website looking for information or a product or going over the features of your product or trying to make a purchase or a return, or simply comparing products, they should be able to find the information with ease.
Make sure you use exit intent technology on your website to keep customers engaged with the content on your website.
By adopting the above strategies and by making customers feel valued through positive interactions with your brand, you can make sure that you stay on top of mind for customers. They will be not only loyal to your brand but also become strong advocates for your brand.