One of the decisive factors for the success of a small business is customer retention. In the competitive business world, getting repeat customers is quite challenging, especially for small businesses. However, having limited resources does not mean that you cannot build a strong lasting relationship with the customers. All it takes is a smart strategy to make them feel satisfied and happy with your brand. Retaining customers would also benefit you in getting new customers through word of mouth advertising. Here are five insightful tips to get you started!
Make a Memorable First Impression
The statement “First impression is the last impression” holds true for retaining customers. New customers would be judging your service on their very first visit, so take it as an opportunity to win their hearts and build trust. Greet them warmly, listen to them, be accommodating and project yourself as a brand that truly cares for its customers. Even if a customer does not buy from you thank him/her for visiting and showing interest, give them the gesture that you are grateful and would appreciate a second visit.
Deliver Your Best
If you want the customers to stay loyal to you, offer them the best. If you have promised a certain quality standard make sure to deliver it, customers develop an association with a brand that lives up to a promise. Meet your delivery and product launch deadlines. Provide them with a customer experience that they will never forget.
Encourage Customers to Give Feedback
Customer feedback is crucial for small businesses to enhance their services and develop products according to customers’ preferences. Ask for customers’ feedback on every visit, simplify the process for them and add an incentive like a free gift card to get credible ratings and comments. Analyze the customers’ evaluation and utilize it to improve different areas of your service. Customers are likely to stick to your brand when they know that you value their suggestions.
Give More Than the Customers’ Expectations
Wooing the customers with a surprise and something new would definitely earn you an edge. Although a conventional approach, discounts, membership cards and loyalty programs are always a workable strategy for customer retention. You can go a step further and add a unique and personalized touch to it. Exceed your customers’ expectations by offering them exciting gifts, special discount packages and dine out/coffee coupons. You do not have to spend a hefty sum on reward plans, the idea is to be creative and thoughtful.
Learn to Apologize and Appreciate
For developing a strong bond with the customers, you should learn to admit your mistakes. Even the most difficult customers can be won over with an apologetic attitude and willingness to solve the issue. If a customer is unhappy with your product/service apologize first and then come up with a satisfactory solution. Thank the customers for trusting your services and express your appreciation with a gesture that they won’t forget.