6 Customer Retention Tricks That Make Your Current Customers Purchase More

209136_EcommerceWeekly-RetentionAll businesses welcome new customers. But with your efforts to attract fresh shoppers, are you missing the opportunity to create repeat customers? You may be surprised at how easy – and cost-effective – it is to re-engage past and current customers vs. acquiring new ones.

Here are six tips to encourage repeat business.

#1. Make creating accounts easy. When customers take the extra step of registering with your site, sellers enjoy the benefits of recording and tracking shopping preferences – and also have access to their contact information for future marketing efforts. However, many shoppers balk at creating store accounts because it adds work for them; it can even halt an order in progress if required for checkout. One simple solution: Provide the opportunity for customers to create accounts after they place an order, with a prominent button directing them to the form right on the confirmation page.

#2. Keep in touch. Using your customer email list, build and maintain ties with satisfied shoppers with regular newsletters. Use your store’s unique voice to generate interest in products, promotions and even conversation, and include direct links to make clicking over easier.

#3. Give back. Consider surprising your best customers with a personal, handwritten note or a small token of your appreciation. In the e-commerce world, it’s all too easy to forgo the personal touch, but even in modern times, small gestures can mean a lot. If you sell baked goods, for example, just imagine how delighted loyal customers would be to receive a personal thank-you note from you, with a favorite recipe tucked inside.

#4. Stay active on social media. On Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest, create inspiring, thought-provoking posts that highlight certain products, relay back to your brand, and inspire conversation (or liking, sharing, retweeting or repinning). Pay attention to the level of engagement of these posts, and you’ll eventually hit upon the ideal frequency to keep your social media followers up to date and ready to shop.

#5. Use discounts and credits effectively. A good coupon code can bring back shoppers – but at the same time, be sure not to shortchange yourself in the name of customer retention. Selectively send out emails with offers such as “$5 off orders of $25 or more,” or “20% off storewide through December 15.” As an occasional perk for loyal customers, discounts can help generate more sales for you.

#6. Offer reminders. For consumable products in particular, send timely emails to remind customers to re-purchase. For example, if you sell handmade cosmetics with a limited shelf life, you could send a message like this every 60 days: “We’re proud to use all-natural ingredients in our facial creams, and never use preservatives. Each jar has been independently tested to be at optimal potency for 60 days. Click here to reorder today!” This kind of email not only encourages repeat business, but informs and educates the customer, plus creates friendly engagement between buyer and seller.

The Bottom Line
You already did the legwork in attracting customers to your store. Now that you have a few tricks up your sleeve to keep them coming back, enjoy the benefits of repeat shoppers – and sales!