The Ultimate Guide to Creating Repeat Customers

Converting new customers to repeat customers is worth your time and money. This collection of articles provides specific tips to help you increase your customer retention rate.
Written by Ruth Chen

Trying to get a new customer to commit to your brand is like doing a trust fall with a stranger: you feel a lot safer falling backwards into the arms of a friend than you do someone you just met. The same logic applies to sales: you're more convincing when you sell to a customer who already knows and trusts you than to a new customer.

These customers who already know and trust you are called repeat customers, or customers who come back for multiple purchases. As you can imagine, repeat customers save you time, energy, and money compared to new customers because repeat customers have already heard the initial spiel and trusted it enough to make a purchase.

If you're not convinced, here are some statistics that show the value of repeat customers:

  • Repeat customers spend 60-70% more than new customers.
    • Customers who come back make larger transactions more frequently.
  • Repeat customers refer twice as many people as new customers.
    • On average, customers refer 3 people after their first purchase and 7 people after their first 10.
  • Repeat customers will buy other products from you.
    • Customers who come back learn to trust your company.
  • It’s 5 to 10 times more expensive to acquire a new customer than to retain a current one.
    • New customers aren’t as profitable as repeat customers.
  • 89% of customers turn to your competitors after a poor customer experience.
    • If you can’t retain them, your competitors will.

Now that you know repeat customers are worth your time and energy, you’re ready to dive in and set up your own customer retention plan. Here are some articles to get you started:

Article #1: 5 critical points in the sales process for creating repeat customers

Repeat customers are fundamental to your company’s success, but customer retention doesn’t come naturally to everyone. There are 5 particular timepoints in a sales process that are especially likely to convert a new customer to a repeat customer. On the day of the sale, be sure to say thank you. When your product ships, include a personalized, handwritten note. One week after your product is delivered, send a follow-up email to check in with the customer. One month after the sale, give the customer a discount to entice him or her to come back. Anytime after the sale, offer the customer exclusive membership to your customer loyalty program.

Read the full article to learn when to follow up with your customers!

Article #2: How to get repeat customers without being annoying

Following up with customers is the most common way to convert them into repeat customers. Because your customers’ email inboxes are already flooded with useless emails, it can be annoying for them to receive even more emails from your company. A few ways you can find excuses to contact your customers without being annoying include personalizing your emails, including useful pieces of information such as advice and discounts, and limiting the number of emails you send.

Read the full article to learn how to email your customers without annoying them!

Article #3: A CRM is your best follow-up tool

It’s tricky to remember when to contact a customer, especially when you have multiple customers you’re working on at the same time. On one hand, you can lose sales from forgetting to contact a customer; on the other hand, it can be embarrassing to follow up with the same customer twice. Here’s your solution: a CRM (customer relationship manager). A CRM can remind you to follow up with right customers at the right time. A CRM can save all the history you’ve had with a customer on an easy-to-read page so that you and your coworkers can reference it at any time.

Read the full article to see how a CRM can help you retain your customers!

Article #4: Why you need a customer loyalty program

Customer loyalty programs are meant to do exactly what they say they'll do--generate loyalty. Your company needs a loyalty program because these programs give customers a reason to come back and allow you to interact with your customers on a personal basis. Your competitors most likely already have loyalty programs, but don't worry; American consumers are members of 10 loyalty programs on average. It's not too late for you to create your own loyalty program and start generating devoted customers who will stick with your brand through everything.

Read the full article to learn why customer loyalty programs generate repeat customers!

Article #5: Tips for effective loyalty programs

When you think of "loyalty program," what is the first thing that comes to mind? You're probably thinking of a point system, where customers are shopping drones who rack up points in return for prizes. However, there are many ways to stray away from the traditional loyalty program, because not all of them work well. Based on research studies, there are several things you can do to make your loyalty program more effective. Some of these tips include using tiers, having an online platform for your customers to check their rewards, and personalizing your customers' incentives. You can even reward your customers for much more interesting behaviors besides making purchases!

Read the full article for tips on creating an effective loyalty program!

Article #6: Loyalty programs based on industry

Not all loyalty programs are create equal. A clothing company's loyalty program is likely to be different from a hotel's loyalty program in terms of rewards and earning mechanisms. Each industry has a slightly different style of loyalty program. For example, if you work in the entertainment industry, you should shape your rewards to include early access to exclusive content. On the other hand, if you work in the financial services industry, you're likely to reward your loyalty program members with cash-back offers and discounts. To get the most out of your loyalty program, you should structure it to fit your industry's needs.

Read the full article for a list of common industries' loyalty programs, complete with statistics and real-world examples!

Article #7: How can a CRM help with your loyalty program?

A CRM, or customer relationship manager, is a powerful tool for organizing and prioritizing your leads and prospects. Likewise, a CRM can be very effective in storing your loyalty program information. For example, a CRM can keep track of which customers are in which tier of your loyalty program, remind you when to send birthday cards to your loyal customers, and help you send mass emails to all members of your loyalty program. You can organize your loyalty program members by location (or any other feature) so you can keep your customers straight and send them personalized emails. A CRM is the perfect tool for an effective loyalty program!

Read the full article to learn how a CRM can help your customer loyalty program!

Article #8: Creating effective deals and discounts

Deals and discounts are a popular and effective way to lure new customers in. Statistics show that customers are likely to return, become regular customers, and best yet, refer their friends and family! To make sure your discounts keep the customers coming back, try tactics such as scheduling the discount for the next purchase or offering a bigger discount on the next purchase). Free shipping and holiday discounts are also good ways to satisfy your customers and give them a reason to stop by. Finally, if discounts aren't working for you, try gifts with purchases.

Read the full article to learn how to keep your customers hooked on your brand with deals and discounts!

Stay tuned for more articles!

Posted on Aug 3, 2015
Filed under Repeat Customers
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