Running and growing your business is a fine balance of juggling tasks, filling orders, managing staff, and more. Between all of the stuff on your to-do list and maintaining some sense of personal life, how do you continue to earn and build customer loyalty?
In this post, we’ll discuss why customer loyalty matters and share 5 ways you can better retain your customer base.
1. Why customer loyalty matters
Yes, your customers are the ones placing orders, requesting services, and ultimately, putting money in your pocket, but their role goes far beyond that. Loyal customers are the ones who keep your bottom line strong, but they can also act as brand ambassadors, facilitate referrals, and support your new initiatives.
Now that you know just how important customer commitment is to your company, let’s take a look at how you can foster and build upon these relationships.
2. Encourage feedback and reviews
Online reviews have become an integral part of marketing over the last decade, and positive reviews are a big indicator of success for many small businesses. Think about when you search online for a car dealership, hair salon, or repair shop — your search likely involves a glance over customer reviews. So, if you want to generate new leads, receive constructive feedback, and really connect with your customers, it’s important to focus on your reviews.
One way you can do this is by using a review management platform to help you request reviews, monitor feedback, and update your listings with the most recent and pertinent information. There’s nothing quite as alarming as a scathing review with no response from the business owner or representative.
What’s more, reviews from your customers give you great insight into how you might improve your standard operating procedures. And alert you if you have an employee, service, or product that’s underperforming. Showing your customers that you’re open to feedback and committed to improvement is a great way to retain your fans for the long-term.
3. Send your thanks
For the most part, your customers probably offer their thanks to you on the regular — but how often do you thank them? I mean really thank them. Probably not as much as you should! If you’ve already built up a base of loyal customers, it’s always a good idea to check up on them and express your gratitude. There are several ways you can do this:
- Send out promotional products like a branded water bottle, notepad, or phone charger to make sure your company is top-of-mind the next time they need to place an order.
- Write them a handwritten note to let them know they’re a valuable part of your organization.
- Send them a gift card to their favorite coffee shop or restaurant to show your support for their lunch and caffeine breaks.
- Take part in a customer appreciation campaign and shout out your best ones.
4. Offer rewards
One of the most rewarding ways to support your customers is to offer them rewards. Giving store credit, clueing them into exclusive sales, and implementing stamp card programs are all ways you can thank your loyal customers.
Using a point of sale system with a built-in rewards program is an easy way to launch your rewards program. This way, your system can automatically keep track of customer points and purchases and issue rewards as needed.
5. Stay connected
Social media is not only an incredible tool for connecting with your peers, family, friends, and colleagues. It’s also a great place for your company to build connections. Oftentimes, customers only see a one-dimensional view of your business, but social media can empower you to bridge that gap by humanizing your brand. Whether it’s shouting out causes you’re committed to, sharing stories about your staff, or posting about your community, being active on your social platforms is a really effective way to earn trust and build lifelong customer relationships.
By earning your customers’ trust, you can also gain referrals, long-term business, and fulfilling partnerships. As you go about your day to day, make sure to keep these tips in mind to earn and build customer loyalty. Which of these tips will you try out first? Let us know in the comment section below!