It has often been said that retaining a customer is more profitable and easier to do than getting a new customer. Customers can easily come and go as they please, and business retention is becoming ever more important as new market players are aggressively taking market share away from well-established companies who are just trying to maintain the status quo.
Strategies need to be put in place to hold onto as many customers as possible to at least stabilize growth – some advice regarding this important topic is shared below.
Regularly use a high-quality CRM tool
Many company’s marketing efforts rely on keeping track of each customer to you know when they were last contacted, what the messaging consisted of, what their status and value is, and other key pieces of data. CRM tools are invaluable when it comes to engaging with customers in a systematic way, to provide a great experience for them, and to earn as much revenue as possible for your company over time. All types of B2B and B2C CRM products are available, but because each business is unique and has specific needs, one CRM will be a better fit than the others.
Do a customer relationship analysis
Relationships grow and change over time, the important thing is to always know where a relationship stands to understand how to get the most out of it. Customer retention strategies need to be adapted on an ongoing basis as relationships evolve. By regularly doing a customer relationship analysis you can identify any potential weaknesses or issues that could result in losing customers.
Be honest with relationship statuses as competitors are always looking for vulnerabilities that can be exposed to win new accounts.
Feedback surveys are effective for companies that have many customers and need an effective way to get lots of information in a timely manner, or if it’s scalable – have in-person meetings or phone calls at the very least with customers to pick their brains and get a sense of how they feel about your company.
Get obsessed with customer service
Sad but true, many salespeople are primarily focused on making sales but fail to provide quality customer service to support the products or services they sold. It never hurts to fire off a quick email to ask how a customer is enjoying what you provided to them, and if there’s anything you can do for them.
By showing a genuine interest in your company’s customers, these sincere efforts will be appreciated and guess where they will go the next time they want to buy something that your company offers? You guessed it, yours.
Zappos and other companies which are customer-service-centric intelligently allocate their marketing budgets towards dazzling their customers instead of buying expensive television ads, for example.
Improve the website experience
In today’s high-tech age – websites are the lifeblood of many companies now, and so your company’s web user interface and experience need to be outstanding. Making it easy to find, research, and purchase products and/or services online can quickly pay dividends, and keep customers coming back time and time again.
Retaining customers is a tireless and ongoing effort, but the benefits far outweigh the time and financial investment it takes to do it effectively.