Tactics for Retaining Online Customers
With so many companies offering similar services to your own, retaining online customers can prove difficult. While the ultimate goal is to acquire new customers and keep them forever, the odds of doing so remain challenging.
Developments in technology and changing customer needs often means that what you offer your customer today can become inadequate later. But there are several steps you can take when retaining online customers.
Provide Top-Notch Customer Service
Bad customer service can become a straight road to customers leaving and never coming back. You can offer the best product in the world, but if your customers have a bad experience with you when there is a problem, then chances are they will go to a company that can meet their needs with less hassle.
Great customer service includes providing a well-curated FAQ page so that your customers can find information themselves if they choose. To make searching more intuitive, create easily accessible and usable content, especially for clients who use mobile devices.
Personalize the Customer Experience
When developing a service for your audience, keep in mind that each customer is unique in what they need. Luckily, you can use client feedback to tailor the content you offer. In order to gather useful feedback, you can add a feedback box at the bottom of your web pages to ask your website visitors what they would like you to improve or what they appreciate.
You also need to personalize content to take advantage of the platform it is on. For example, content you create for your company’s Facebook page might differ somewhat from what you offer on your blog. In addition, content viewed on a laptop might look a lot different on a mobile device, so responsive mobile-friendly design is a must.
Develop an Effective Loyalty Campaign
Listening to your customers can you help you gain a better understanding of their expectations, pains, and preferences. With the feedback you collect, you’ll be able to come up with an attractive customer loyalty program. You can offer special discounts, limited offers, and open access to gated content as a part of your customer loyalty campaign.
Test different channels to deliver those perks: email, live chat on your website, text messaging, push notifications. For example, text message marketing works even for small businesses, especially if you need to send time-sensitive offers or notifications.
But do it wisely – spamming a customer’s inbox with the latest offerings is a sure way to get emails from your company sent to the junk folder. You should also keep in mind that you need to get an opt-in from your customers, in other words, their agreement to receive relevant marketing messages from you.
Upselling and Cross-selling Your Services
A great way to offer your customers more than the initial set of services is by upselling and cross-selling. In upselling, you offer a customer a more expensive and upgraded version of what they have bought/are buying or varying levels of service. While one customer might need a simple solution taking very little effort on your part, another might need a more intricate solution that takes more time.
However, you can charge a higher price for the more-involved solution. You then upsell the customer to the service level they need.
Cross-selling is when you offer a related service that goes along with the original service that your client purchased. For example, if you offer one product, you might offer a related product that serves as an add-on to the service or product. You still give them the original service, but the add-on makes it better.
Bonus Tip: Offer Content That Grows With Your Customers
Develop your content so that it caters to your clients’ needs at each stage of their growth. Starting with their initial interest, provide guides and podcasts so that they can assess if what you offer is what they need. Next, provide resources, such as white papers and case studies, to help them make that final decision to purchase your service.
Once they have decided to purchase, make it easier by offering free trials, demonstrations, and a well-curated FAQ page. Once they become paying customers, offering loyalty programs will help in retaining online customers going forward. In addition, keep in contact with them by sending an occasional email or push notification.
These basic customer retention tactics are a great start for retaining online customers and improving the overall level of customer satisfaction. Listen closely to your audience, focus on improving your customer experience, and test various marketing channels.
Alexa Lemzy is the customer support manager and blog author at TextMagic, the bulk text messaging provider. She covers topics like customer retention and customer service in her articles and is fascinated by the developments in the mobile world.