In today’s competitive marketplace, customer loyalty is very crucial to small business growth. It’s much harder to find a new customer than it is to retain an existing customer. Restaurants, retailers, grocery stores, salons, fitness centers and more depend on loyal customers and repeat visits to continue growing.
Building emotionally satisfied and loyal customers is the holy grail of any small-business owner.
If you don’t provide an incentive for customers to return to your business, they can easily turn to a competitor after even the slightest inconvenience. But as businesses grow and diversify their offerings, it’s easy for a brand to lose sight of what it originally promised to customers. Small Businesses can increase their customer retention in several ways by rewarding loyal customers as shared in this post.
1. Offer cumulative discounts on selected lines.
Offer discounts to customers when they reach specified spending targets. For example, 10% off their next purchase if they spend N10,000. Limited time offers can encourage prompt purchases, but you must make sure you publicise the scheme to make sure they are aware to buy in.
2. Offer a bonus for reffering new customers.
You don’t have to give a huge bonus to make a positive impact and increase referrals. Try providing a small discount or some company branded swag (such as T-Shirts or Mugs) to show your appreciation. Depending on how extensive your referral program is, you could create a more structured loyalty program to reward customers on an ongoing basis.
3. Give away free items with multiple purchases.
Buy one, get one free. This is a tried and tested method of encouraging short-term repeatable sales for small businesses. Many retailers use this type of promotional offer to increase sales, attract new customers, and keep old customers. Don’t overuse this tactic though, or people might start to question the quality of the goods.
4. Take your best customers for a day out.
Many businesses entertain high-value customers during festive periods (Christmas or New Year) with an expensive party or dinner. But what about an annual day out at for a handful of your top customers – a trip to the races, for example? It could become a fun fixture that customers look forward to that makes them more loyal to your business overtime.
5. Free delivery for all orders over “X” amount.
This is a technique that is most useful for online e-commerce business. Adding free shipping or delivery to e-commerce sites is a surefire way to improve your conversion rate. However, unless repeat purchases drive a large portion of your sales, offering free delivery may not be profitable. It’s not worth offering free delivery unless you can make the offer profitable.