Your Company and Customer Retention
When looking at their business, many owners have one thing on their mind, “How can we get new customers?” To grow your business, you need new customers coming in and purchasing your product or service. It only makes sense, right? While you wouldn’t be wrong to think this way, there’s more to running a successful company than bringing in new customers. You also have to focus on retaining the customers you have already.
Why is customer retention important?
- Customer acquisition costs five times more to gain a new customer than retain an existing one**
- Leads to repurchasing/continued service
- Builds relationships
- Increases client base
Now you may be scratching your head thinking, “How am I increasing client base by keeping the same customer? It doesn’t add up.” Think about it like this. You go to a restaurant that is new to your area. The food was fantastic, the service was great, and the price unbeatable. You get home and post on Facebook about your great experience. The next day at work, you tell your coworkers about it and the same to your friends at yoga in the evening. The restaurant not only gave you a great experience and ensured you would be returning. They also received all of this FREE marketing from you, the consumer, that is more effective than any ad they could run.
Having a good product or service alone is not enough to keep a customer.
How many times have you switched brands or service providers simply due to cost? If you’re like most people, you’re always looking for a good deal and ways to save money. When given a choice to spend $50 or $40 on a comparable product, both with five-star reviews, odds are you are going to spend the $40. If the product reviews are different though, say five stars on the $50 product vs. three stars on the $40 product, you most likely are going to spend the extra $10 for what you think will be a better product and, as the reviews suggest, a better product experience.
This example shows why customer service is number one. Having an excellent first interaction with a customer, providing continued knowledgeable guidance and complaint management paves the way for those five-star reviews you want. Caring about your customer service is how you get there. Exceptional customer service can set you apart from a competitor that has an otherwise comparable service or product.
The customer service team, whether it is you as a one-person operation or the employees you have hired on to help, start the relationship with your customers.
The old saying stands true, first impressions are everything. You want to make sure your team is properly educated on the service or product you are providing. A customer will be hesitant if the individual cannot answer questions they may have concerning your product or service. This is also the case with customer complaints. The customer service team should be prompt with their response and be able to begin reconciliation with the customer right away.
Your team should always go above and beyond.
Personalization is a great way to achieve this. People do not want to be treated like a number or just another customer. A simple follow up after providing a service or a friendly “Hello again” to a repeat customer is one of the easiest ways to add that personal touch. Another effective tool can be a rewards or membership program. Rewards can be as simple as a discount after X number of purchases or a “prize” after acquiring X number of points. By doing this, you are not only encouraging a customer to come back and continue using your company, but also giving exclusivity and incentive.
So, get out there and grow, but don’t forget about your current customers! Just remember, you wouldn’t be where you are today without them.